Monday, December 21, 2009

Small Update

Long story short - Most of this month I'm on a new contract so I couldn't find time to update stuff. Most of LAST MONTH however - was taken up by Dragon Age Origins. Blame Bioware for making such an awesome RPG.

I've gone back to pencil sketching recently and found myself in need of practice. The problem with using software is the ability to experiment and make mistakes while in traditional work you can only change so often. I do miss pencil sketching though - even though you can't undo.

Here's something I've been working on - a contractor with an AKS74U with quality mods. Still researching the AK so please pardon any inaccuracies. This piece had already been touched up digitally - that explains the sharp linework but the underlying sketch was done in pencil. I haven't had the confidence to ink sketches for a long time now.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Where Did The Month Go?!

I'll be back with something soon. November sure went by quick.

Friday, October 16, 2009

M4 Carbine Progress

Going a little slow this week. More tweaking the little parts than actually working the major parts in. There are little things here and there to add and change, so as the old saying goes, slow is smooth and smooth is fast. Placed in the remaining major components that aren't done yet to see how it looks like as a final:

Not too bad - should be able to get the piece done by end of October.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

M4 Carbine Progress

More work done on the M4. Integrated the EOTech holosight and added the entire buffer tube construct. Also added the forward assist key, but it looks off - may redo it. Added a retouched Timney trigger - the hammer spring is in the proper position now. Also retouched the Magpul MIAD grip, dunno if anyone can see the difference haw haw haw.

Just plugging away for now, hopefully will be able to get this up to scratch by the end of October.

Friday, October 9, 2009

M4 Carbine Progress

Still testing the 'ghosting' - but I've rendered a few more components and tossed them in for a quick look see. They seem to fit fairly nicely and it shouldn't be too much hassle. At this point I'm not too sure if I can get away with a full phantom/ghosted view. Might have to rethink the strategy here - hopefully I don't have to do extra work by doing a cutaway for the rail panels.

Pretty rough last couple days - a rushed storyboarding job with a probability of more work if the pitch is successful. I better go sleep - don't want to fall asleep in class in front of my students haw haw haw haw.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Works on Exhibit - Anatomia @ Ontario Science Centre

Several weeks back my Prof from school emailed me on whether I'd like to toss in some works for an upcoming Exhibition at the Ontario Science Centre. The exhibit is titled 'Anatomia: An Exhibition Exploring The Art And Science of Anatomy'.

Obviously I said yes and here it is:

It is an honour to have my artwork exhibited among my peers from my school days, and among other talented illustrators and artists of OCAD, UofT and ÉPFL. Much thanks to Ontario Science Centre, Sheridan College, Ms Ana Klasnja-curator of the !dea gallery where the exhibition is held. Last but not least a big THANK YOU to my Prof Kathryn Chorney for taking time out of her busy schedule to coordinate with everyone to make this possible. Couldn't have been easy especially with me being literally on the other side of the world.

Here's a better view of the pieces chosen for the exhibit:

For more information, go here to access the OSC website. If you're in Toronto, do drop by to check out this exhibit.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

More M4 Carbine progress

Pretty much slacked off all of last week - with the exception of my part time teaching and some progress work on several personal pieces - including this one. Here we go:

Timney drop-in trigger. Timney doesn't make a full auto trigger. What they have is highly accurate drop-in match grade triggers for the M4/M16/AR15, but I gave it some liberal creative license - with full technical knowledge just so you guys know its not BS - and made it a full auto trigger. The...errr...selector plate is still not done.

The hammer spring is the wrong resting position haha.

Below here is one of the few files I've worked on. Basically I did the linework for each component and then paint them separately. Made some discoveries while rendering these. I'll be working with photoshop paths more from now on.....lesson learned.

Here we have a 'test'. I'm still tweaking the balance of the masking - since there are many lines, its hard to figure out what to sacrifice yet what detail to retain while masking the surface layer to reveal the internal components. More tedious than difficult.

Thats all for this update. I'll have another WIP up in a couple days.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Some Updates....WIP

Its an eventful few days - couple weeks back just as I started work for this client, my computer died suddenly. After some figuring out I thought it was a motherboard issue. To keep the story short, the old motherboard 'exploded' right in my face. I saw a chip glow bright orange and fizzled into white smoke. Changed the mobo and I'm now back in business.

Been working away on the series of illustrations for the current client. I won't post those just yet, I want them to use it first.

But here are some progress work from personal pieces, the M4 carbine and a new piece that I don't believe I've put up here before.

Back to work - man the air smells stale today....

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Illustrators Don't Work For Free

This article was first posted on Craigslist and later flagged/removed. But not before someone caught sight of it and re-posted it on his blog. I don't agree with it all, but I do agree with most of 98%. I'm doing the same by reposting here and I hope everyone spreads the word.

Special thanks to my teacher Kathryn Adams for bringing this to our attention.

Original Post on Position Relative

"Craig’s Pissed
January 23, 2007

I’m a self-employed graphic designer. In the old days, when I was greener than a leprechaun’s testicles, nothing would make me consider suicide quicker than a potential client who was, in fact, just some deluded jackass. The hook was usually, “If you do this job cheap, I’ve loads more work for you!” and I bought that line more times than anyone with an ounce of sense ought to have.

This morning, the following was posted on CraigsList. It’s been doing the rounds on design boards and blogs in a big community whoop because it captures and excoriates so perfectly the ignorance and arrogance inflicted on designers by design morons.

The post was quickly flagged and removed (i.e. censored) by CraigsList users, but not before it became the gift that keeps on giving. Who was that masked crusader? Designers everywhere owe him a hot coffee and a big hug.

Post from CraigsList

Every day, there are more and more Craigs List posts seeking “artists” for everything from auto graphics to comic books to corporate logo designs. More people are finding themselves in need of some form of illustrative service.

But what they’re NOT doing, unfortunately, is realizing how rare someone with these particular talents can be.

To those who are “seeking artists”, let me ask you; How many people do you know, personally, with the talent and skill to perform the services you need? A dozen? Five? One? …none?

More than likely, you don’t know any. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be posting on craigslist to find them.

And this is not really a surprise.

In this country, there are almost twice as many neurosurgeons as there are professional illustrators. There are eleven times as many certified mechanics. There are SEVENTY times as many people in the IT field.

So, given that they are less rare, and therefore less in demand, would it make sense to ask your mechanic to work on your car for free? Would you look him in the eye, with a straight face, and tell him that his compensation would be the ability to have his work shown to others as you drive down the street?

Would you offer a neurosurgeon the “opportunity” to add your name to his resume as payment for removing that pesky tumor? (Maybe you could offer him “a few bucks” for “materials”. What a deal!)

Would you be able to seriously even CONSIDER offering your web hosting service the chance to have people see their work, by viewing your website, as their payment for hosting you?

If you answered “yes” to ANY of the above, you’re obviously insane. If you answered “no”, then kudos to you for living in the real world.

But then tell me… why would you think it is okay to live out the same, delusional, ridiculous fantasy when seeking someone whose abilities are even less in supply than these folks?

Graphic artists, illustrators, painters, etc., are skilled tradesmen. As such, to consider them as, or deal with them as, anything less than professionals fully deserving of your respect is both insulting and a bad reflection on you as a sane, reasonable person. In short, it makes you look like a twit.

A few things you need to know;

1. It is not a “great opportunity” for an artist to have his work seen on your car/’zine/website/bedroom wall, etc. It IS a “great opportunity” for YOU to have their work there.

2. It is not clever to seek a “student” or “beginner” in an attempt to get work for free. It’s ignorant and insulting. They may be “students”, but that does not mean they don’t deserve to be paid for their hard work. You were a “student” once, too. Would you have taken that job at McDonalds with no pay, because you were learning essential job skills for the real world? Yes, your proposition it JUST as stupid.

3. The chance to have their name on something that is going to be seen by other people, whether it’s one or one million, is NOT a valid enticement. Neither is the right to add that work to their “portfolio”. They get to do those things ANYWAY, after being paid as they should. It’s not compensation. It’s their right, and it’s a given.

4. Stop thinking that you’re giving them some great chance to work. Once they skip over your silly ad, as they should, the next ad is usually for someone who lives in the real world, and as such, will pay them. There are far more jobs needing these skills than there are people who possess these skills.

5. Students DO need “experience”. But they do NOT need to get it by giving their work away. In fact, this does not even offer them the experience they need. Anyone who will not/can not pay them is obviously the type of person or business they should be ashamed to have on their resume anyway. Do you think professional contractors list the “experience” they got while nailing down a loose step at their grandmother’s house when they were seventeen?

If you your company or gig was worth listing as desired experience, it would be able to pay for the services it received. The only experience they will get doing free work for you is a lesson learned in what kinds of scrubs they should not lower themselves to deal with.

6. (This one is FOR the artists out there, please pay attention.) Some will ask you to “submit work for consideration”. They may even be posing as some sort of “contest”. These are almost always scams. They will take the work submitted by many artists seeking to win the “contest”, or be “chosen” for the gig, and find what they like most. They will then usually have someone who works for them, or someone who works incredibly cheap because they have no originality or talent of their own, reproduce that same work, or even just make slight modifications to it, and claim it as their own. You will NOT be paid, you will NOT win the contest. The only people who win, here, are the underhanded folks who run these ads. This is speculative, or “spec”, work. It’s risky at best, and a complete scam at worst. I urge you to avoid it, completely. For more information on this subject, please visit

So to artists/designers/illustrators looking for work, do everyone a favor, ESPECIALLY yourselves, and avoid people who do not intend to pay you. Whether they are “spec” gigs, or just some guy who wants a free mural on his living room walls. They need you. You do NOT need them.

And for those who are looking for someone to do work for free… please wake up and join the real world. The only thing you’re accomplishing is to insult those with the skills you need. Get a clue."

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Was it the best ever console? Maybe not, but it has some of the best games on consoles ever!!! I had a wonderful time with my DC when it was alive. I still keep its carcass in my drawers, maybe I'll ship it out to get repaired one of these days.

I attributed the downfall of SEGA's console business to 3 points:

1. Piracy - c'mon we all had some 'cracked' Dreamcast games at some point.

2. Sony's marketing power - had us all fooled, PS2 wasn't more powerful than the DC - in fact it took them several years to iron out anti aliasing problems that were never an issue with the SEGA console right from the start.

3. Astronomical development costs of the Shenmue Saga. 70million dollars in USD sure sounds like about average for development costs now, but think back 10-12 years ago where the market isn't as vast as today and neither were videogames as accessible as now (and neither were the profits as readily accessible to the publishers and developers).

Shenmue had a lot of innovative features that were improved from older games - its so called 'quick time events' where you have to push a combination of buttons when the game requires you to - is now de facto standard for some of the biggest console titles (The Force Unleashed and God of War are some examples). Yet very few console games were able to replicate the sandbox feel of Shenmue - save GTA4, Fallout3 and the bigger budget games. It wasn't a profitable business since it was rumoured that every DC owner would have to buy Shenmue twice for SEGA to actually make money on both the console and Shenmue. Still when you look back at Shenmue maybe 8-9 years ago....the graphics looked on par, if not better than the Wii.

Anyway - I think its a shame SEGA got out of the console business - because it meant no exclusives, and the lack of a hardware department meant they weren't able to do things to what they want.

Here's to the good times!!
Sorry for the cut off, I my blog can't take images more than 400px across.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Fresh Posts To Come

I've recently started a series of commissioned artwork and will be slower in updating this blog. I'll toss up things as soon as they're okayed - I want to ensure the client uses them first before I post on the blog.

Till then...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Work In Progress - M4 Sneak Peek - LINEWORK COMPLETE!

ALRIGHT! The linework is finally done. Took a bit longer than I expected. This represents maybe 95 hours of work. I hope to have it completed sooner but that's that. I have a new commission that might start this month so this will have to take the back seat. Though I hope to have it finished before October.

Here are some close ups.

The full linework setup for Phantomed View. Parts are ready to be painted in Photoshop.

The forward assist key is missing from this. Its already done but the line weights haven't been added at this moment. I'm not really too sure how its going to turn out, hopefully it won't suck - but I'll keep this spot updated so anyone who is interested can follow the progress.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Sooo....Disney Buys Marvel.....

For 4 Billion dollars. Now the deal might not go thru eventually but board members on both sides have agreed in principle to the deal....

Just sayin it might look like this thats all :D

Here's one more....I'm having WAAY Too much fun with this.

PS. I've been offiically pimped by my friend Andy over at ToysReviL.

Work In Progress - M4 Tactical Carbine (sneak preview)

Can't figure out what's not working, but its not Blogger's problem - its my firefox browser.
Yeah, lots of things going on, I probably should've updated the blog more often.

This is still a WIP. I've placed it on a 30/10 axonometric grid to avoid distortions in perspective, but some bits are slightly tuned because it looks better on the eye. Tested out the EO-Tech styled holosight in colors to see what needs to be tweaked in the linework.

The linework itself took about 85 hours on Adobe Illustrator, and its still ongoing because there are some tweaks here and there with the lineweights and several smaller components like the full auto sear and small springs and catches are not fully included yet. This piece of work is set up for exploded style drawing or a phantomed view drawing which I am attempting - a lot of work up front, but I can get 2 versions of artwork from the same linework. Will be needing another 40 hours or so more for this. The mess you see here is really not that messy at all, its just the way I work - clutter.

More posts coming up this week. Keep watching this space.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

New Posts Coming...

The last time this happened it took me almost a year to start posting new stuff haha.

Gonna put something up over the weekend.

Post Update: Blogger seems to have some javascript problem and I can't upload anything. Once this problem is resolved I will put up new work.

Monday, July 6, 2009

15 Minute Portraits

Some sketches from the July 09 OIC Portrait Day event at the Red Dot Museum - I really should go more often. All the portraits were of folks off the 'street' (we were indoors) who signed up to model for 15 minutes, so sometimes its a challenge for all artists because they weren't paid professional models. But that makes it more interesting because you gotta use a lot of short term memory. The models also could buy the portraits they liked (there were at least 40 artists there) at 8 bucks a piece - so thats' not too bad!

In case anyone was wondering about the size of the sketchpad, its an A3 (or 11x14 for you north american types)

The pooch (image below) presented a different challenge. Pooches being Pooches, can't sit still for too long - especially when its an 8 month old Italian Greyhound thats full of energy. Still it was a very rare opportunity to get to observe and draw dogs up close, the last time I got to draw critters up close was a few years back when the Prof had a couple of birds - a Great Horned Owl and a Peregrine Falcon - that were brought in for our ornithology illustration part of the program.

I was actually hammering away at this one because its only 15 minutes and you can only get so many details in. My previous experience with dogs helped a lot with the structure so a lot less time was spent on observing and more on actually drawing.

Pooch was awesome by the way, he's a real darling -

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Environmental Concepts

Here are a couple of images hot off the press. I'm bidding for a storyboarding job recently and while I'm not sure if I'll get it, I've taken the opportunity to explore environmental concept art again. Used to do it for a living a few years back - though I admit I'm not the best at it. These are some of the locations I'm looking at for a comic that I'm writing, they're coming along slowly, but nicely.

Hope y'all will like these.

I've also taken my own sweet time to recover from a virus. I swear I almost coughed up a lung.

New addition - just continuing the work - got some new references and hopefully I can put something up next week.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Work In Progress - Polish Winged Hussar, in color

This is a work in progress. I was looking through my older sketches and I've been wanting to put some colors into my Polish Winged Hussar sketches as found in my earlier post. Its still kinda rough right now, I'm not really looking to finish this up really soon coz of the other work that are bringing in money and the fact I'm easily distracted by so many things.

I've had some difficulty doing research off google images - I don't know if its flattering or embarrassing, but I get results of my own sketches more than the actual images from museum pieces out there. Although I try to be as accurate as possible, there will always be some artistic freedom license (appreciated or not) involved when creating an image from scratch. Hence its sometimes quite frustrating to not find what I need to enable me to create more accurate renditions of this unit.

Further digging did yield several wonderful websites out there with fairly good detailed photographs of Winged Hussar gear and equipment and those sites are worth looking at. Here are a couple of them:
- <- I believe this one is in Polish -

Thursday, June 4, 2009

New Personal Logo

Been working on some ID/branding job recently. So I took some break time to scribble in my own stuff. And after just a few tries I came upon the idea that led to this:

Now I just gotta figure a way out to integrate this into my business ID. That's all for this week, not much time to hammer things out. Back to the job that pays.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Arctic Sniper + SAKO TRG 42

The SAKO TRG is one of the finest sniper rifles built in recent times. This piece was created with the same profile style as the previous post, but because I'm not too keen on working the internals so it took a lot less time. SAKO provides a very detailed pdf manual online and it provided great information to work with. The touqe looks unfinished and I guess it is, but it'll do for now and I gotta turn my attention to other stuff.

Without Camo

With Camo

Friday, May 15, 2009

Title Bar Artwork

The artwork on the title bar was actually specifically created for promo purposes. If y'all think it sucks then I'm in trouble. What's already up now is just part of the complete artwork.

The snubby M4 carbine the fella is peering thru will in fact be a cutaway drawing showing the internals of the rifle. Here's an idea how it'll look like:

This was a rather fun piece due to the research I had to do. I'm rather satisfied with it and its now being tossed up onto my business card, hopefully future promos will make further use of it.

More Dogs!

Fawn Colored Great Dane
Work in progress of the Grey Wolf - Canis Lupus Lupus
Frakkin furry frak.....

Monday, May 4, 2009


Almost 8 months since the last post. After months of neglect, here's something at last.

Profile views of a Dobermann....
....and a Belgian Shepherd Malinois

More to come...


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