Thursday, October 30, 2008

Happy Halloween: Number Two of Two

As promised, above is the book cover for the anthology "Witch Way to the Mall" edited by Esther Friesner. I like painting silly and grotesque stuff. The editor wanted a sexy soccer mom type witch though (a WMILF?). Can you find the Wizard of Oz allusion? I did it entirely subconsciously. (Hint: a means of propulsion, although not usually a desired one.)

Below is one of my initial thumbnail ideas and three bonus, more traditional, witches I painted for "Wyrd Sisters" by Terry Pratchett many years ago.

Now to go and eat the candy I bought for the Trick-or-Treaters. They're going to be egg-throwing angry with me.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Happy Halloween: Number One of Two

The more I paint the more I want to draw. The more I draw the more I want to paint. Then there's inking. I love to work in pen & ink. You can get so much out of a line. It's spooky -- BOO!

I know that's pretty lame but that's what Halloween is all about, bad puns and being horrifically unfunny. The pen & ink above is a frontispiece for an anthology called "Witch Way to the Mall" edited by Esther Friesner. (See what I mean about puns). I'll post the cover for the book later, nearer to Halloween.

I've added a new blog to my blog links. It's The Bastion: Web Journal of Fantasy Author John Marco. He asked me to do a guest blog and doing it reminded me how much I liked doing my own blog. Thank you John. John has a new book coming out I did a wraparound cover to called "Starfinder." I'll post it here at some point but if you want to see it sooner you can click on the link to John's blog. You'll need to scroll down when you get to his blog though.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Long Shadows of Introspection

Last week I completed several projects that kept me happily busy. Is work really its own reward or is it a way to escape unproductive pondering?

Quite often when I complete a great deal of work and the pressure of looming deadlines is lifted I like to sit in a dimly lit room and do nothing. This can last a couple of days. My wife finds my behavior unnerving. This time though I was filled with energy and I quickly went about doing all the little things that I couldn’t do when I was busy. That lasted about three days and then I started brooding so I went out for a long walk. I’m not sure how many miles I traveled but my walk lasted for hours. Heck, it’s two miles into town alone. I decided to look at homes for sale in town. If the right one presented itself I’d buy it and turn it into a studio. It’s a good time to buy. Prices are low. A few years ago I considered buying a small church. What a great studio that would’ve made with its vaulted ceiling. I’d have to have a contractor take off the giant white cross though. All these ideas are completely impractical yet I continue to entertain them. Maybe, just maybe . . . well, I wouldn’t want to miss a great opportunity, would I? (See how my brain works).

The long walk didn’t work though. Today was worse than yesterday. I dragged myself through the day. I did some organizing and some cleaning. It depressed me further. I kept running across disheartening things.

Around four o’clock I went for a run. It was colder than I expected so I had to change my usual path so I’d be running in the sun. As I saw my long shadow ahead of me I thought about what I wanted to do with my future and I decided to start my blog back up.

The picture above was done for Subterranean Press. It’s the cover to an anthology called "Songs of Dying Earth" and I did several pen & ink illustrations for it as well that I will someday post to this blog. I greatly enjoyed reading every story in the book. The reason I put it up on my blog today is that it fit my mood but that mood is gone. I ran away my long shadowy thoughts.