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I am very excited to announce the release of my first children’s book! I was contact last year by Little Brown Books, who was working in association with Universal Pictures to develop a few different kids books for their upcoming movie HOP. I was happy to hear that they were interested in having me illustrate a 24 page,  full color, 8×8″ paperback for them. The story was a lot of fun to work with, and it was also a delight to illustrate characters designed by one of my favorites, Peter de Seve.

I’m not exactly sure where the book is available…I’ve heard it’s at Target and I know you can get it on Amazon here: Hop: Chicks Versus Bunnies

It even comes with punch-out easter egg stands! Fun for the whole family this Easter! Haha. I’m really not sure how much I can post of the inside of the book at this point, so for now here is an early sketch of the cover I did:

And the HOP trailer, for anyone interested:

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Here is a painting I just finished for a fine fellow I met at the first CTN expo in 2009. He is working on a 3D short film called “Ride With Me”. I will post some of the character designs I did in another post. A few sketches for this piece, because that’s always fun:

 

So, what was it that made Kabam interested in buying a little casual Facebook game company like WonderHill? Well, I’m not exactly sure, but I think it mostly hinged on our final WonderHill release, Dragons of Atlantis. This was a huge departure for us as a company, as it was a much deeper and more realistic strategy game than anything we had done before. It was a big gamble, but in the end it paid off! Dragons is now one of Kabam’s premier titles. You can play it on Facebook here.

I didn’t spend too much time on Dragons, as I was moved to a new project when we were acquired by Kabam. I did get to design the logo, as well as work on battle reports, store items, and a couple of Facebook ads. I also included a few studies I did for learning dragon anatomy.

This project had some amazing talent on it, including Art Direction by Kate Burgess and gorgeous paintings by Rosie Sullivan. They both helped me out with trying to wrap my head around a more realistic style than I’m used to. Had a great time stretching my artistic limbs…

 

2010 is gone! 2011 is here!

One of the more interesting things that happened last year was the acquisition of my employer, WonderHill, by social strategy game giant Kabam. I thought I’d finally post some of my work from WonderHill, from games like GreenSpot, Enchanted Gardens, Harmony Mahjong, Three Hills Solitaire, Fairy Rescue, and Tattoo City.

Last weekend, Mayka and I took a trip three hours north to Mendocino so that I could attend Erik Tiemens‘s gouache landscape workshop. Meanwhile she had her own adventures. The workshop was full of great demos and I feel like I learned a lot. Erik is certainly a master and it’s great that he’s so willing and happy to share his wealth of knowledge. Here he is doing a demo:
 
And the demo itself, which was very useful:
It was a two day workshop, and there was time in the middle of both days for us to go outside and sketch around Mendocino.On the end of the second day we worked on a more finished painting and Erik came around and gave individual help. Here are some of my warmups/sketches and a slightly more finished painting:
I got to a point with that last painting where I felt like I didn’t know what else to do with it. I had Erik take a look at it (paintbrush in hand) and he just started going to town…scrubbing bits out, adding contrasting colors, foreground elements, eliminating symmetry, etc. If there’s one thing I took away from the workshop, it is to be less fiddley and attached to my paintings and be more willing to take broad action with them.
As for Mendocino itself, it is a really strange town. I constantly felt like I was in a Hitchcock film. The town is very small and remote and foggy. It seems that everyone there is an artist of some sort, which gets surprisingly annoying after a while. Considering that 90% of the workshop was from San Francisco, I am hoping Erik has more workshops in the Bay Area. Here are some “Mendo” photos; eerie and charming at the same time:
 
That last one is not actually from Mendocino. On our way home we decided to take a “shortcut” from highway 1 over to 128 because we thought 1 would be too long and windy to take all the way back. BAD IDEA. We ended up on “Mountain View Road”  – winding up and down a mountain top in the middle of nowhere for an hour (an EXTRA hour than it took to get there) If the car had broken down I’m pretty sure we would have just died in the woods. We both ended up carsick from the twists and turns and constant braking…but at least I got that photo.
In other news, APE is coming soon! Will have lots of new work to post shortly.

About Me

27, Bay Area, artist. I love books, drawing, and dogs. Full time gig as a Lead Artist at Kabam in San Francisco.

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