Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Digital Art Roundup

I've been doing a lot of messing around with Photoshop lately. I love Photoshop as a program but I've never been crazy about doing anything more than sketching with it until recently, when I started really getting into trying out different brushes and techniques for creating new things. I've found that by downloading some good textured brushes and really playing around with the presets, it is possible to make drawing on a tablet feel a lot more intuitive and closer to drawing traditionally. One of the biggest breakthroughs for me was messing with the opacity jitter, which allows you to "layer up" your brushwork like you would with graphite.

Here's a few of the things I've churned out in the past couple weeks as I try to grow as a digital artist.

For those of you who draw with Photoshop and are on the lookout for more traditional-feeling brushes, I highly recommend the Nagel Series 33, a free-for-download brush pack available from These are the primary brushes I used for all of the artwork here and I'm loving them to death.

Download the Nagel Series 33 here

Thursday, November 3, 2011

"Spiderman" - Halloween 2011

Okay...I'm pretty proud of this. I had never made a mask before this one, (nor attempted much sewing, for that matter) so I think it came out pretty good.

The idea actually came from the kind of doodles I like to draw. If you've seen my sketches you know I like to draw people with weird creature heads...deep-sea fish, bugs, etc. etc. So when I was thinking about making a Halloween costume this year, I decided just to do that. The idea to call it "Spiderman" happened when I was thinking about how I was gonna explain my costume to people. But I'm glad I thought of it, because I think it ended up way funnier than "arachnocephalic businessman" would have been.

Here's more or less how I made it:

1. Traced my head onto a sheet of butcher paper, from the front and from profile, and made sketches of where I wanted the fangs, eyes, and everything else to go.

2. Made a wire armature of the head using my tracings as guidelines. I used steel wire held together with Aquamend (a kind of malleable adhesive that molds like clay, but dries rock-hard). NOTE: I don't actually recommend the use of wire for this, because it is a) uncomfortable and b) difficult to secure in a fool-proof fashion. Like I said, this was my first mask. Next time I think I'll try to use construction foam for this part.

3. Used Aquamend to form the fangs at the ends of the chelicerae.

4. Wrapped batting around the armature to shape out the chelicerae and add some padding to the rest of it. Tacked the batting down with thread.

5. Laid in black netting above the fangs so I would have a slit to see through, and attached it directly to the armature with glue.

6. Cut a pattern for the fur and lining using scrap cloth.

7. Sewed all the fur and lining pieces onto the head.

8. Cut 1 racquetball and 3 ping pong balls in half, spray painted them flat black and glazed them with a mixture of metallic black acrylic and iridescent red glass paint. These are the "eyes" on the mask.

9. Glued the eyes onto the fur.

10. Bought a suit.

11. Put it on and pranced around, took silly pictures, answered the door wearing it, etc.

Of course this is the cut and dry outline of what I did, without all the messy experimentation I went through to reach a few of these steps. But that's the gist.

Also, this is the first time I've put together a costume in YEARS, and let me just say...doing this kind of thing makes Halloween WAY more fun.

Can't wait till next year.

Saturday, October 29, 2011


I created this sculpture of Cipactli (a pretty freaking cool monster from Aztec myth) for Fox TV Animation's "Origins" art show. With such an open theme I really felt like I could do anything, so I just kind of went crazy. I freaking love monsters. I can't help it. Anyway, it's another Super Sculpey piece, painted with acrylics and with clear Epoxy for the drools. It's enclosed in an 8"x6" shadowbox.

Unfortunately this piece didn't sell at the gallery, so I shall have to think of something else to do with it. I still think it came out pretty cool. But my tastes are pretty weird.


Also I finished up my Halloween costume today...the first one I've put together in many a year. I'm pretty proud of it. I'll make a post about it when I have some pics. 

Saturday, October 1, 2011

The Tiny Show

Yesterday was the Tiny Show, the first art gallery I've participated in since being hired at Fox. Obviously, the entire show was for small-format works...which was nice because that was the ONLY guideline I had to follow, leaving me free to create whatever madness popped into my brains. It was super exciting/terrifying to both see more personal work from the artists I work with and showcase my own. Plus I got interviewed, which I think I handled okay, despite the fact that I was worried I might have Dorito dust on my teeth.

Anyway, here's what I submitted:

 Big Bite, Prismacolor pencil on toned paper over Copic marker, with acrylic texturing.

Dreadmole, Super Sculpey clay, acrylic paint and clear Epoxy.

And, hey! They both sold!
So I will definitely be doing this again. In fact, I will be doing it again next week. Because that is when the next show is going to be. The theme for that one is "Origins," a multi-layered and complex theme deserving of deep thought and consideration.

I'm gonna submit a monster with big teefs.

Sunday, August 28, 2011


I recently ended up doing a series of Harry Potter drawings for myself and a couple of friends. It started off as just one drawing of myself, but there were five of them by the time I was done. It maybe got a little out of hand but I had a lot of fun doing them, despite the number of times that my boyfriend pointed out to me that I was spending a lot of hours on a series of completely unpaid projects.

The second half of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was coming to theaters, and lots of people were getting back into the Potter spirit. A friend of mine drew a picture of herself as a Hogwarts student and posted it on Facebook. I thought it was a great idea and decided to be a total biter and make my own.

It probably would have ended there, but there was also a Patronus generator meme going around that was causing a lot of hilarity, mainly because it had an extremely limited Patronus selection and was therefore less than capable of giving people everything they expected from a personalized Patronus. Thinking it would be fun to find out what kind of witch/wizard my friends would be if they really had a choice in the matter, I typed up a little questionnaire meme asking people to post information about their magical personas - wizard names, Hogwarts house, wand type, Patronus, etc. My friend Nathan, who is a big bearded guy that loves small cutesy creatures, chose a flying squirrel as his Patronus, and the image of that was so hilarious that I ended up drawing this for fun and posting it on his Facebook.
Once that happened and people got the idea I was giving out drawings, two more friends of mine dropped subtle hints that they might like some for themselves, and I ended up doing two more...

...although that second one got delayed for awhile, because it turns out my friends over at the Order of the Triad podcast were gearing up to do a Harry Potter episode and asked me if I would do some Potter-themed artwork for them.
I had a lot of fun and was pleased that everyone seemed happy with their artwork. Now that the Potter craze has died down again I haven't received any more requests, but if this Pottermore thing takes off...who knows.

Click here to listen to the Order of the Triad podcast:

The font used on the Order of the Triad: Episode 9 3/4 pinup is Harry P by Phoenix Phonts, available for download at

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Fire Dragon sculpture

Whew! First update in a long while! Got a job as a full-time PA so things have been busy...but as a side effect, I've gotten really fired up to sculpt!

This guy is made with Super Sculpey, baked and painted with acrylics. Thin coating of clear resin to shiny up the eyes and mouth.

There will be more sculptures. Oh yes. There is no turning back.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Order of the Triad Pinup

A couple friends of mine started a podcast awhile ago that discusses geek-related things. They are calling themselves "The Order of the Triad" and they asked me if I would be able to create a pinup for their second episode. Here we have Justin Quizon as the Alchemist, Nathan Schulz as Dr. Orpheus and Bobby Johnson as Jefferson Twilight. Everything was done in Adobe Illustrator.

The podcast itself is really fun if you're into geeky stuff. You can find the current episode at

The font used is "It Must Be Destroyed" by Tony O'Farrell. It is free for download at

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Ink Sketchies

Going through old sketchbooks again. I started drawing in ink a lot last year and ended up with some pretty fun stuff. Make sure to click on 'em as the previews look fuzzy for some reason.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Toxic Pond Critters

I recently did an assignment for my production for illustration class that gave me an excuse to do a lot of really fun creature designs. I was really happy with how they came out and decided to post them. Maybe I'll post the final mock-up of the assignment if it comes out well. These were all inked and colored in Adobe Illustrator.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Beetle Brawl XXVI

A large-ish watercolor (the original is about 18" by 24"). Beetles are super fun to draw and so are mutants. I find myself working digitally a lot lately but I still enjoy the ol' watercolors.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


I was going through some old sketchbooks today and thought this one was pretty fun.

Friday, April 29, 2011


Trying to get a bunch of my sketches scanned. Here are a few from a little book that I recently filled up.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Zeke & Klaus

A 1-page comic featuring original humans by Aaron Hoffman and original monsters by me. Drawn in charcoal pencil and hand-separated.

Alien Sketch

A sketchbook drawing that ended up being a pretty fun design.

Nothing Is Impossible

But trying to solve a Rubix Cube with your mouth is not fun. Painted in gouache, acrylic and India ink.

Graveyard Ghoul Anatomy

A fun little montage showing the hairless and skeletal forms of a monster. Drawn with ink and brush.


Sketchbook drawing of an adorable monster that whistles through the hole in its neck. The valves on the side of its neck change the pitch.

Omnigator space! Painted with gouache.

Red Devil

Design for a demonic creature wearing a cool jacket.

Rat Monster Sketch

A semi-aquatic ratlike monster which, being eyeless, hunts primarily by scent.