Thursday, December 24, 2015

Small Paintings from Illuxcon Part 3

 Mermaid: Peridot

I decided to do another mermaid before I realized how popular mermaids had become with other fantasy artists.  They're everywhere now, and a frequent subject at IlluXcon.  I wondered what color of skin a mermaid would have before I started on the finish.  Would she have a color that camouflaged her from predators in the sea?  Or would Mer-people be the top fish in the ocean?  Maybe her skin is green simply because of the filtered light from above.   The original is 7.5" by 5.25", oils and graphite on shellacked acid free bristol board, mounted with archival boards and materials, and matted to size 11" x 14."

Happy Holidays,


Thursday, December 17, 2015

Small Paintings from IlluXcon Part 2

The Stars in Her Hair

This small painting for IlluXcon was made from the fuzziest photo I may have ever used for reference.  I was at a convention in Iowa many, many years ago when I took several pictures of a very lovely young girl whose mother was shepherding me, as artist guest, about the con.  I saved those pictures for years and years and only in the last decade did I bring them out and make some drawings and paintings from them.  She had a clear, victorian kind of beauty and so inspired this tiny homage to Dante Gabriel Rosetti's "The Blessed Damozel."
  • The blessed damozel leaned out
  • From the gold bar of Heaven;
  • Her eyes were deeper than the depth
  • Of waters stilled at even;
  • She had three lilies in her hand,
  • And the stars in her hair were seven.
Needless to say she has more stars in her hair than seven, because that amount just didn't look right. The whole effect makes me think of the spirit of sleep and nighttime. Below are the other small paintings I did from this same model.  All 3 little paintings are sold now.

The Pearl Circlet

The Pearl Earring


Don't let the bedbugs bite

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Small Paintings from IlluXcon Part 1

Cavalier Cat

This started as a small drawing I did while waiting for my child to finish a sports practice.  It was just from a picture on my iPhone of our siberian cat Rumble Roar, nothing very deliberate or with much planning.   After 30+ years doing very meticulous art for book covers, its rather a relief to do little works that will be finished in days instead of weeks.  I expanded it to put him in a cavalier costume, for he is a very even tempered gentlemanly cat, and I have a nice large book of Van Dyck paintings for reference.   I then put a layer of shellac over the graphite to seal the paper and painted the finish in oils.  It's mounted and matted with acid-free papers.

Rumble Roar with his portrait, pre-paint

Matted and mounted for IlluXcon

I'm hoping to do more animals in costume.  That was a lot of fun, especially learning how to make that silk effect on his doublet.


Me, feeling a bit poked at this season.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Holiday Handmade Cavalcade Tomorrow

Holiday Handmade Cavalcade
Saturday December 5th
One last post before the fair!  These fresh and modern botanicals will be available as originals, prints, and letter size cards.  They were a lot of fun to do, a nice change of pace from my fantasy work.  Next week, a post about the small works I did for IlluXcon.


Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Holiday Cards

Happy Holidays from New York
The Pizza Rat saved a slice for you!
When you're craving some fries
Greg Samsa found just the right gift for his sweetie
NYC Critters celebrate the season of giving

All on sale in my Etsy shop, and available in person at the Holiday Handmade Cavalcade at Chelsea Market in Manhattan this Saturday, December 5th, and at the Gowanus Holiday Market at Breukelen Colony on December 19-20.


Monday, November 30, 2015

Holiday Handmade Cavalcade

Holiday Handmade Cavalcade

Already mounted mini paintings and Super long cards
This year I will be selling mini paintings, prints and cards of botanicals and modern artifacts with the Etsy New York Team.  We are returning to Chelsea Market in Manhattan and I will only be there on Saturday, December 5th, from 10AM to 8PM.  Here are some of the wares I will be offering.  More on Wednesday!  I will also be at the Gowanus Holiday Market at Brooklyn Colony on December 19 & 20th for any last minute shoppers.

Original art, ready to hang
Modern Artifacts
Remember these?
Unusually tall and printed on watercolor paper

Monday, March 9, 2015

From a High Tower

Cover Art for 
"From a High Tower"

This is the original sketch I did for Mercedes Lackey's new Elemental Masters novel.  "From a High Tower" takes place in Germany and the heroine is working for a Wild West Show.  This of course excited me because I haven't done anyone in western costume since art college.  

Some photos as reference - Miss Annie Oakley and my son posing as a falling villain.

But with input from the author and publisher, it was decided it would look too much like a western instead of a fantasy story, and the heroine's outfit turned into a feminine version of a Bavarian huntsman's jacket and hat. Also the magical symbols and wind in the background didn't tie in with the title well, so the tower was added.  So a few changes from the original idea, but all for the better, and here is the finished art.

Oils on gessoed illustration board


Monday, February 16, 2015



I've been busy for the last few months, and it's time to catch up on the cover art!  This is in oils for the House Wars Chronicles by Michelle West.  

This is the comp shown to the publishers.  Below are some of the photos I used for research or reference.

While I used to do a finished drawing before I start the painting, I was under a tight deadline and just enlarged the sketch onto the gessoed illustration board.  I started with the stag known as the Winter King, then moved onto Jewel, the rider, and the background of arches in the center triangle.  These aren't color corrected so they're pretty yellow.

Moved on to the Oracle and Evayne

The snowy trees and stars in the sky.

 And  with the black triangle outline and some gold inlaid designs on the Winter King's antlers, it's done.