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T-Shirt Tuesday – Octopus Edition

Hey there. As you may have noticed, weekly t-shirt releases were on hiatus for awhile as we prepped for (and recovered from) Hot Pink .

But now we’re rebooting the t-shirt release program, starting with this octopus from the upcoming Ocean Rain show (more on this at a later date):

You can buy this lovely cephalopod right here in my Redbubble store .

Cheers.


Welcome back, and thanks for joining us. It’s been a few days since the Dinosaur Show – time spent recovering and regrouping, for the most part. It seems that the bigger these events get, the more time it takes to bounce back.

And this was definitely a BIG event.

Earth-shaking, even.

The excitement all started Friday night, with a trip to imagemaker photographic studio to hang the show. This is part of the process that I always stress needlessly about, as it usually goes off without much of a hitch. In this particular case, the positioning and hanging of the paintings was a breeze; it was just the peripherals (a display for posters and calendars, for instance) that raised questions.

That night I slept well, which has never happened the night before a show till now. Come to think of it, I slept pretty well for most of the preceeding two weeks.

In the morning I was up early, running last-minute errands in the rain. We were at the studio doing last-minute setup by 1:00PM…

… and then it was showtime. My friend Cindy, who moved here recently from Ontario, snapped up the medium-sized T-Rex almost immediately after we opened the doors. Technically that was the second sale of the show, though, because John from HogShack had already spoken for one of the struttin’ T-Rex paintings.

Over the next six hours lots of people came in, often with young dinosaur fans in tow. Talked to old friends, met some people I’d previously only talked to online, sold a few paintings, and all in all had a great afternoon.

And then it was 8:00. The afterparty started.

The Agent was outfitted in a custom T-Rex top, and we also had hot pink T-Rex buttons made:

The people who got into the dinosaur theme the most, though, were Candice Roach and Danny Parker. Candice made a cake especially for the show, and Dan brought not only a T-Rex hat, but a full-on dinosaur COSTUME :

I kept thinking we’d hit the point where people were more focused on the party than the art, but then, miraculously, a few more paintings would sell. The final tally: 14 paintings sold out of a possible 17.

Did I mention there were drinks? Cake? Sandwiches and pumpkin pie cheesecake that my friend Melissa Jones so thoughtfully contributed? That people came from all over the place just for the show?

I’ve gotta say, the show of support never gets old.

Things wrapped up pretty quickly around 1:00AM. The day was done, the show a success.

Thanks, first of all, to the people who bought my paintings, posters and prints: John Lim Hing, Cindy McShane, Nic & Todd Cruickshank, Lori Kittelberg and George Smeltzer, Lindsay Bayne, Christine Warner, Geoff Gauthier, Irving Lau, Mark Crater, Candice Roach, Krista Lee, Amanda West, Donna Jay-Crowe, and all the people who bought buttons.

These lovely people couldn’t make the show (which will always happen) but were still kind enough to send along apologies and/or encouragement anyway: Chantal Michaud, Kate MacDonald, Lynn McIlwee, Jackie McCaughan, Adam & Corinna Carlson, Lyndsey MacEwen, Jewel Staite, Crystal Witty, Ceci Graber, Erin Kyle, and Jeff Hornby.

And of course, how could I forget my agent, Tess McCann? We’ve been through a lot together in the 14 months since we met, and this show actually started with her posting T-Rex cartoons on her Facebook wall in the early part of 2012. Thanks for everything, Tess. At the risk of repeating myself, this wouldn’t even be possible without your help.

(Photos courtesy of Danny Parker, Ned Tobin, Amanda West, Lindsay Bayne, Krista Lee, John Lim Hing, and John Watson.)


Playing catchup again, so this post will be a two-fer:

Ink, coloured pencil, gouache.

Pencil, Photoshop.


Another shotglass offering tonight. This one’s from Busch Gardens, another place that I’ve never been:

Graphite, watercolour, gouache.


… and counting. My brain is practically exploding with ideas lately. Something like twenty paintings are currently in the works, and ideas for more come every day. Having your brain on fire is kind of a weird, surreal thing sometimes. But I’ve learned to just roll with it.

In particular, ideas for the show/book of pinup girls in bars just keep popping up. I’ve tweaked the idea from the other day, and sketched out another. I’ve got concepts in mind for almost ten more.

Here’s where things stand right now:

I’ve also just complete two 6×6-inch metalflake paintings that I’m pretty happy with. Been thinking for awhile of doing some with just a simple border and no other linework, and lo and behold, the concept works:

On top of that there are Christmas gifts and five commissions in the works. Busy, busy.

And that’s my story.


Working, as I may have previously mentioned, on another series of metalflake paintings. Today there was big progress on 15 of them.

A few highlights of the day:

What’d you do today?


So, things are progressing nicely. All the glazing for the paintings is finished, and clearcoating is underway (the longest part of the process). Six of the eighteen paintings are finished.

Here’s the latest:

Just designed these two in the past couple days:

And I’m looking at this for the next t-shirt tie-in:

Oh, and I’ve already had inquiries about two of those six finished pieces.

So far, so good.



Wow, it’s been quite a night here. As you may recall from previous installments, I’ve been planning a series of paintings for a show sometime this year – all simple, iconic white lineart over glossy, deep, metallic surfaces. The title of the series is “Metal Flake”, so the common subject is rock ‘n’ roll.

Since December I’ve been filling a sketchpad with thumbnails:

And of course, I’ve also been doing the heavy-lifting portion of the first three paintings:

Anyhow, this first one came to a head tonight. I masked off the necessary areas and laid down the white lineart:

And when that was done, I promptly posted this last photo on Twitter, Facebook, etc. etc. The result? Within 17 minutes the painting was sold and financial details were sorted. God, I love the internet.


So hey, I’m still plugging away on the hot rod book. Learning all kinds of things – some trivial, some not. One of the most fun things about a new piece is deciding on the colour. It’s amazing the kind of resources that are out there on the net these days. Yesterday I started on a picture of a 1960 Chevy Impala Brookwood station wagon, and put the word out in a few places ( , Twitter , etc.) that I was looking for colour suggestions. In the space of an hour I had about a dozen suggestions, and dammit, they were all good. I’m still undecided, to the point where I may actually do 4 versions of the car.

But I digress – I was talking about the resources you can find online, wasn’t I? Well, one of the responses was a scan of the paint-chip chart for 1960 Impalas. You can find it here if you’re interested. Stuff like this is a goldmine to me. I think from here on in, I’ll make an extra effort to source this kind of reference material whenever I draw a vintage car.

So, back to the Brookwood wagon. I wanted a two-tone paintjob, and a couple of non-stock colour combos came to mind. Then when I saw that chart, I saw several other viable options. (Even as I type this, more come to mind. Maybe I need to stop looking at it now.)

I finally narrowed it down to 5 options yesterday, and then managed to weed out one more. Without further ado:

That’s option 1 – what I call the Creamsicle Combo. Cream and orange pearl.

Option 2 is based on factory colours – Jade Green and Cascade Green. I may render them to look like metalflake, though.

Option 3 is Pagan Gold and Candy Root Beer. From what I’m reading in the car magazines these days, that brown is one of the trendiest colours around in that scene. Though I must admit, I never thought I’d draw a brown car.

Option 4 is, like option 2, based on the factory colours (in this case, Royal Blue and Horizon Blue). And again, will probably be done in metalflake.

Obviously these are all still in the extremely rough stages, but what you see here should get the point across. And the more I look at these, the more I like all of them. This car would probably look good in just about any colour, really.

Anyhow, if you’ve got feedback, I’d love to hear it. Other suggestions would be fine, too. Maybe I could do a poster with a whole slew of Brookwoods on it.

Thanks for reading.
Bret


Kind of a catchall entry this time around – no specific theme, just a few updates and tidbits.

First off, two more of the car pieces are finished. A 1929 Ford Model A Tudor Coupe:

And a hodgepodge vintage racer that I just refer to as “Lucky Seven”:

It occurred to me recently that matching art styles with vintage cars would be an interesting exercise. It immediately got me thinking about drawing some drag racers from the late-60s psychedelic era in their full mind-blowing day-glo glory. Hell, that could almost be a book in itself. So far I’m leaning towards some type of Mopar funnycar at night, foot-long flames shooting out of the zoomies. Or maybe a lace-painted Corvette with a rocket engine.

Next on the blog agenda is this 54 Chevy:

I’m seeing this one in my head as being inked with a brush, and then coloured with watercolour paint splashed all over the place. As I’ve indicated before, inking is a real chore for me, so obviously I need to do a lot more of it.

In other news, I just shipped a commissioned piece that I’ve been cleverly referring to as Top Secret Painting. Once the lucky recipient gets it and I know everything’s cool, I’ll show the whole piece. In the meantime, here’re a couple of macro detail shots:

The skulls are just a minor background accent; unless the light hits them just right, they’re practically invisible. But I think they really make the piece.

This glossy green bit is a more significant part of the painting. I used a faux- encaustic technique to add depth, and as is often the case, it resulted in something I couldn’t begin to capture with a camera.

This last shot is of a green pearl paint I mixed for this piece – a mix of Tri-Art Liquid Mirror and phthalo green, with a subtle touch of interference green.

Finally, I wanted to mention that I may be participating in a group art blog with some artist friends of mine. Things are still very much up in the air right now, but I think it’s an idea with some promise. More info to come once things get finalized.

And now I think we’re up to date. What are the rest of you people up to these days?


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