Specialising in caricature, I’ve also done character designs and
storyboards for television and film. In recent years, I’ve done more
realistic illustrations in addition to the humourous art. An example of
this is my cover for Sports Illustrated’s 50th Anniversary Issue
depicting the entire Sistine Chapel ceiling, which was shown at the
Society of Illustrators in 2004; the Society of Publication Designers
awarded it a Gold and Silver Medal the same year, and it garnered the
Master (gold) award in the Editorial Category in the 2006 PAINTER
Awards. For the majority of my career, I’ve worked in traditional media
(mostly acrylics), but, began to dabble in digital painting sometime in
2000 or 2001 — my friend, Ernest Burden III, an architectural renderer,
who embraced digital illustration early on, gave me my first PC, because
he felt I needed to be working digitally; he has long insisted that
artists should get paid for learning and encouraged my experimenting in
the digital realm with paying jobs. I continued to work in acrylic for
more mainstream publications and used smaller trade magazines as a venue
for my digital attempts.
After much thought, I don’t think there have been any real innovations
to my work due to the tablet, other than the tablet allows me to work
digitally. I use the tablet and stylus very simply, to make marks, like
a pencil or brush on paper, except the result is on the monitor. I hold
the stylus and draw. Maybe this low-tech approach is a selling point in
that it’s easy to transition from analogue to digital because the
process of drawing remains the same, no bells and whistles necessary.
While digital art provides the possibility of exploring options and
different artistic paths with a given piece, it’s not really a time
saver. I find making digital images still takes about the same time as
analogue; the strokes still need to be made. One difference is I can go
back to a previous version and try something else without redrawing from
5. What applications do you use in your work flow and what functionality
is driven by using a Pen/Tablet.
Generally, I use Photoshop to import a scan done on paper and pencil and
save to TIFF. I bring the TIFF into Painter and paint digitally. I’ll
save to RIFF if using layers and eventually save to TIFF. I use
Photoshop to clean up the file or add masks/borders. The pen and tablet
are used to make the marks. I don’t know that anything is driven by
them. They’re simply the tools to get what my hand does to the thing
displaying the art.
6. If you could ask for any new features or future innovation with Wacom
Pen/tablets what would that be?
Since I’m only using an Intuos, I have no idea what I’m missing with the
Intuos 2, Intuos 3, or Cintiq. Features they have might be things that
would be useful, and may already account for anything I might require. I
like the idea of drawing on a Cintiq and working directly on an image
and the art instead of having the disconnect of drawing on the tablet
and looking at the monitor. I’d love to try out the later models,
especially a Cintiq to see what is possible and how it might change my
work. But, at this point in time, I have no answers or experience with anything but the plain old Intuos. Several friends suggested I contact WACOM and get them to send me tablets to try out, like when athletes work out sports endorsements. I told them I didn’t think that would work (one friend insisted it was nothing for companies to do stuff like
P_Britches1 is an image from “Prickle Britches”, a 6-minute digitally hand painted animation produced in Janary of 2006.
BLUDREN1 is an image from “Bludren”, a 7-minute digitally hand painted animation produced in 2003.
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