CAN! Cuban Artists Network

We’ve launched CAN- the Cuban Artists Network. It’s a non-profit campaign to bring art supplies to Cuba, where the artists do AMAZING work with extremely limited supplies. Please consider donating! And if you can’t donate, please post it on your social media- every little bit helps. To read about the organization, go here: and to donate, go here:




I’ve been busy. Again. Super busy. But came across this old image I created for a science publication while I was trying to make space on my WD passport. It was a fun drawing to create and wasn’t sure if I’d posted it before. So it’s up on my website for now. for more illustrations and stuff!amec

Piper and Pickle SMILE

Just released today, a children’s book written by Dallas veterinarian Brittney Barton and illustrated by Susan Young, SMILE is available for purchase online. Veterinarian Dr. Brittney Barton Dvm, has just published her first children’s book emphasizing the importance of teaching young children about the human/animal bond.You can buy it  HERE.


Cleaning House (adding animation)

I’ve just revised my website- I tweaked the bio, deleted the ‘news’ section (as this blog has replaced that), added SHARE buttons and created an animation section. I’d put it off, as revising my website (in my head) is laborious, time consuming, and generally overwhelming. But much like cleaning my house, once I’d done it, I realized how quick and easy it was, and wondered why I’d lived in squalor for so long.

Take a look! click here!

Tortuga Tattoo

A returning client asked me to create an image for her tattoo. She is great- she knew just what she was looking for and was able to communicate it and had examples of similar images. She wanted a tribal-esque land turtle, and wanted to see a variety of color combinations to help her decide.

I started with a basic pencil sketch:

turtle pencil sketch and then traced my own drawing, creating a more graphic interpretation:

graphic land turtleLastly I imported it into Illustrator and traced it out, making edits along the way to make it cleaner. Once it was a vector image it was pretty easy to mock up a few different color combinations.

turtle finalsShe loved it and will get it done in a few weeks! So looking forward to seeing it!

The Process

I’ve finally gotten a client who didn’t have a non-disclosure agreement. However, I think his story is great and very sellable, so I won’t talk about it publicly. I will however talk about my process.

So first, I was mistaken about the target age group and presented him with this rough sketch:

Penelope Rough Draft

The Client let me know that it was WAY too young. I had missed the mark. He was great about giving me a better description of what he envisioned, and so I produced this rough which he was pleased with:

Penelope Rough Draft 2.5

As you can see the characters are for a much older audience. I also cleaned up the text using Illustrator. I didn’t want a freehand look to the words, but more of a blockish poster look. From here I took it to color. I generally work dark to light, dropping in the overall shadow color and texture first.

Penelope in Progress

I put in the base colors first, and then layer, layer, layer. And then I add more layers. Once I get it to a point that I like and feel ok committing to, I’ll consolidate my layers so that my file isn’t ginormous, but all the initial layering of thin opacities help create a more painterly feel.

Penelope in Progress 2

At this point it’s starting to take shape, but it’s in it’s midway stage. And here, is the final, which hopefully the client will be pleased with:


Brotherly Love _ EWww!

I’ve just built my brother his very own website and hooked him up with a wordpress blog. He still needs to upload more images, but I’ve created an easy way for him to do this using Webassist‘s Power Gallery! (Though we got it when it was on sale. From time to time it goes on sale for 50% off.) My brother’s site (drumroll and horns):

You may be saying, “Whoa, that looks an awful lot like your site, structurally speaking” and you’d be a keen observer. I’m not a website-building-guru, and he didn’t actually give me any sort of insight into what he wanted. I knew he wanted his Chinese name in there, so I asianed the site up a bit. It may change once he tells me how he really wanted it to be completely different and all the time I put into it is a waste. Sort of like hanging the Christmas lights. Each year we say, “Jonny, you’re so picky about the lights, why don’t you just hang them this year”? And he says, “No no, you guys hang them”. And so we do. We take our time, hang it all up, start to put the ornaments on even. And when we’re almost finished he wanders into the room and says, “WHAT?? You did it like THAT???” takes everything off and restrings it himself. So once he figures out dreamweaver I’m sure he’ll restring it, but his current official take on his site is, “I guess that’ll do for now”.

I’ve also hooked him up with a blog. He’s leaving for Kenya in the morning, so hopefully he’ll figure it out by then and post updates and photos with his new and trusty wordpress iphone app. And here is his blog:

And here is the photo for this post- a book cover he and I did together a few years back.


For my brother’s bio information, click here and scroll down. The one for his site is “coming soon”.