All Taped Up And No Where To Go

“Wait a minute, Doc. Ah… Are you telling me that you built a time machine… out of a DeLorean?”

“The way I see it, if you’re gonna build a time machine into a car, why not do it with some style?”

For as classic of a movie as “Back To The Future” is and as iconic as the Time Machine DeLorean has become…you know that one day they are going to remake the first movie and everything’s going to change. They remake everything these days, and “Back To The Future” is not safe from such perils as well. My hope is that never happens, ’cause the next thing you know the Time Machine will be made from a Toyota Corolla or some green Hybrid car or something like that. A Corolla does not a Time Machine make…the DeLorean has been, is, and will always be the make and model of the time traveling vechile of the future. ‘Nuff Said!

Batteries Not Included

“Whoa, this is heavy.”  “There’s that word again; ‘heavy’. Why are things so heavy in the future? Is there a problem with the earth’s gravitational pull?”

I’ve always said that if I won a large sum in the lottery, if by some chance all my numbers came up in the Powerball…my one main luxury that I’d splurge on would be finally obtaining my dream car. Second to that would be a life-sized Han Solo in Carbonite, but that’s another story. If I could get my hands on an actual prop vechile from the movie that would be the best but if not, then at least a faithful replica would suffice. The only other added thing would be that I would have to have a Hoverboard replica as well laying in the seat next to me at all times. However, since I have not been fortunate enough to gamble my way to extreme riches or have yet to make them on my own…my dream is completely out of my reach…at the moment. I’ll have to be satisfied by merely being within a foot of it. Look…but do not touch!

I’ve been to Universal Studios several times, both in California and Florida, and whenever there I made sure to visit my holy ground…the site of the “Back To The Future” DeLorean. The photos below were taken during one such occasion back in Summer of 1990.

Boy you can not fathom the restraint it took not to break that barrier, crack open a gulf wing, and zip off into the future for a little joyride. I am so proud of my will power that I demonstrated there that day and on any other day I’ve been there.

Well…I guess this is the closest I’ll ever get, but at least I got this close…right!

Reruns

“Yeah, well, I saw it on …rerun.”    “What’s a rerun?”

I absolutely miss all those 80’s sitcoms and TV shows. It’s one thing to pop in a DVD and watch them that way but that still doesn’t disguise the fact that they’re reruns. Why oh why couldn’t they discover hidden away in the corner of some dark and dank basement boxes upon boxes of lost episodes from my favorite 80’s TV show. How great would that be…brand spanking new shows of shows that are no more…brilliant! How come they don’t find “Lost Episodes” like they use too. There was a time when they were making these discoveries it seemed like on a daily basis. Were people in the 80’s just more responsible that they didn’t lose episodes of the shows they had worked so hard to produce…is that it? But oh how a boy can dream that one day again he’d hear, “Stay tuned for a very special episode of ‘Diff’rent Strokes’.” Oh well, that day may never come but at least there are DVD season sets. If I want to travel back in time to the 1980’s, all I have to do is press play on the DVD player and zip on back to experience the nostolgia…1.21 gigawatts not required.

Future Boy

“Then tell me, ‘Future Boy,’ who’s President in the United States in 1985?”

I know that some fans are more faithful to the original, but I’ve been a fan of every incarnation of “Back To The Future.” Whether it be all 3 movies, the animated TV series, the comic books, the Universal Studios Ride, or merely the Direct TV commercial with Doc Brown…I’m a fan! However, not everything “Back To The Future” related is a gem. If you’re a super fan and simply miss seeing Christopher Lloyd decked out in his Doc Brown garb and you’re tired of just watching the movies, as if that would ever happen, then the following just might be for you. Back in 2007, Christopher Lloyd shot a short film for Mircosofts’ Key Note Address as Doc Brown and spoofed the movies. Even though it was nice to see Emmett once again, it was pretty sad and only made me miss the movies more. Thankfully I could pop in my DVD’s and erase the bitter taste of the Microsoft film from my memory. If you’re brave enough and have several minutes of your life to waste, then click on the link below to view the short film.

2007 Microsoft Key Note Address Short Film

Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Flux Capacitor

“No, wait! Doc. Doc. The-the-the bruise – the bruise on your head. I know how that happened! You told me the whole story. You were standing on your toilet, and you were hanging a clock, and you fell, and you hit your head on the sink. And that’s when you came up with the idea for the Flux Capacitor…which… is what makes time travel possible. “

As I most likely mentioned here countless times and as every single one of my friends and family will confirm…I’m a hugh fan of a little 80’s flick titled “Back To The Future.” When I was a kid, I wanted to be Marty McFly…at certain times…I still do. I wanna zip around in my DeLorean time machine, evade Biff’s descendants on Mattel Hoverboards, and play “Johnny B. Goode” at the Enchantment Under the Sea dance. I’ve always be pretty hard pressed to pick a favorite movie. When people ask, I tend to rattle off a list as long as my arm and then add an Et cetera at the end to show that the list continues on for infinity. However, when push comes to shove, the Adventures of Marty and his faithful companion Dr. Emmett Brown…would definitely be at the top of that list.

With that said…

I want a DeLorean Time Machine…it is my dream car…not just a DeLorean but the actual one from the end of the first movie with the Flux Capacitor, Time Circuits, and of course absolutely…a Mr. Fusion…’cause who wants to get trapped in the past with out the ability to travel back home to your own time. Getting one’s hands on 1.21 Gigawatts is pretty damn difficult…watch the movie…you’ll see. So, if I can’t somehow own the original prop vechile, or reconstruct a replica like so many out there do, then at least I could own the device that makes time travel possible…the Flux Capacitor. I spotted on the Internet that Diamond Select Toys has produced an extremely detailed prop replica of the Flux Capacitor for you to power your own Time Machine. I guess Time Travel is finally possible for everyone who can afford it. So today’s Post It Post drawings were inspired by exactly that, my desire that one day my sweet Fluxie…you will be mine!

Post It Posts R Back!

That’s right folks…read it and rejoice…just as it states above…Post It Posts are back! Now even though I’ve been posting lately, the Post It Note drawings have been MIA. Below are the first of many to come so prepare for the onslaught.

So one of my New Year’s Resolutions this year was to draw and create more personal artwork for myself. I want to up my production and be the Stephen King of the art world when it comes to prolificness that is. So far I’ve been pretty successful, but there’s still more that I could be doing. This past Christmas and as well as my Birthday, I received a number of pre-made blank canvases as presents. People were trying to tell me something…don’t you think. However, approaching a painting can be daunting to say the least. The glaring white void of a blank canvas screams to have pigment smeared and lathered on it’s surface…that I have yet to accomplish this year. I will definitely have completed a painting, at least one, by the time 2010 comes screaming into existence…FO SHO! Painting is time consuming for me, but it’s worth it when I’ve finish covering my massive canvas and stand back to take admire my handy work. It’s at that point that I realize that I’ve just created something, no matter how good it is, that will out live me long after I am simply dust in the wind.

So my “Artzee Fartzee” Post It Note drawings today are about just that, putting my nose to the grindstone, buckling down, (insert your own cliched phrase here), and just get at it while the getting’s good! So until next time, I’m back off to my art table to bang out another drawing.

The Force Is Strong With You!

In my continuing campaign to post more examples of my illustrations from concept thru creation to final birth…I wanted to share with you artwork below.

Like any guy from my generation, especially one that has both feet in the deep end of the pool of Geekdom, George Lucas’ “Star Wars” Universe…precisely that from the original trilogy, has always been a strong influence on me. For my own personal joy, I choose to illustrate four characters from those movies. The stylized Gouache paintings I illustrated were done on Watercolor Paper and measure 5.5″ x 7.5″.

Each one of the paintings started off as pretty detailed and tight pencil drawings on Tracing Paper. Working on tracing paper in this manner was a hold over from my college years where I was taught to do all thumbnails on Tracing Paper for some reason…I still not quite sure why. From there I made Photocopies of each of these drawings and did Color Comps in Prismacolor Color Pencils. A majority of the time I nail the colors I’m gonna use on the first try. Occasionally I may tweak the colors a bit either in another Color Comp or during the painting process itself. From there I work rather closely at trying to match those colors in the Final Gouache Painting. I think I was successful.

“Darth Vader” Pencil Sketch, Concept Color Comp, & Final Painting

“Boba Fett” Pencil Sketch, Concept Color Comp, & Final Painting

“Stormtrooper” Pencil Sketch, Concept Color Comp, & Final Painting

“Jabba The Hutt” Pencil Sketch, Concept Color Comp, & Final Painting

Click on the Pencil Drawings and the Concept Color Comps to view them larger.

I plan on doing more paintings in this style either in Gouache or in a digital format because the style really lends itself to the vector Illustrator format. I’ll keep you updated here. May the Force be with you!

Man Of Steel

Faster than an speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, able to leap tall buildings in a single bound…is it a bird? Nah! Is it a plane? Nope! It’s Superman…sort of!

Several years ago I had an assignment back in college to illustrate any current affairs topic of my choosing…the stipulation…I had to us a pre-existing famous piece of artwork as the inspiration for my design. At the time, Christopher Reeve had just suffered the tragic spinal cord injury that put him in his wheelchair and left him paralyzed. With the time that followed, his perseverance to survive against all odds, I saw him more of a Superman than ever before…and I believe he did too. “Man Of Steel” is a 5.5″ x 7.5″ Gouache painting on Watercolor paper.

My inspiration was Pablo Picasso’s painting “Girl In The Mirror.” There was enough tenderness and…no pun intended, self-reflection, that it certainly fit the subject matter that I was trying to illustrate. I went for a more literal translation of the piece and switched out the Girl and here reflection for Christopher and his rather super mirror image.

Above is also my original Pencil Sketch for the painting that I drew on tracing paper then blew up to the appropriate size before transferring it to Watercolor paper and laying paint to paper.

This illustation is probably one of my favorite pieces that I’ve done. I was really proud of how it came out.

Retro Resort

Over the past ten years of working in the apparel industry I’ve designed numerous textile repeats. Below are two versions of a Retro Tabasco Hawaiian Resort shirt I designed called “Bottoms Up.” What inspired this repeat was the 60’s. That time period had such a great design aesthetic and with “Bottoms Up” I was trying to capture that Atomic feeling.

This was my First Version of the design that I completed. It contained many more fluid shapes as well as an Atomic Star element that my boss insist that I remove for the Final Version.

In the Final Version I was told to add a bit more color along with the removal of several elements. I feel the design still captures the look I was originally shooting for.

Drink Up!

Tattoo…Da Plane Boss, Da Plane

I’m a big fan on the the tattoo TV shows “Miami Ink” and “LA Ink,” not that I have any tattoos or plans on getting any inked on my skin, but I do appreciate the artwork that tattoo artist create. When I was coming up with new designs for our TYVEK Wallet line at my previous place of employment, I thought I’d present the concept of doing one based on tattoos.  Ed Hardy’s designs, which are tattoo related in nature, had not hit mainstream at that time so I thought that we’d be hitting the ground running with this popular trend. So with that in mind I sketched up the concept design below.

Like most of my sketches, I work pretty closely to my original concepts when it comes to working it up in the computer. I started by sketching out some pretty tight pencil drawings of the individual elements, scanned them in, and then colored them in Photoshop before laying out the wallet design.

The above were my initial color versions of the design. Like the “Rockin’ Guitar” design I posted yesterday, nothing gets by without some tweaking, changes, and alterations…and “Tattoo” was no exception. I won’t bore you with all of the incremental changes between the major ones, but I will share with you the significant ones. After a couple of nips and tucks to the artwork and layout, my boss decided that he wanted to take the design in a different direction, a more monochromatic direction. Below are the results of said demands.

I think that the above version works…it’s just different. However, since my original concept was tattoo art, I still prefer the first version which more strongly captures that feeling. The changes didn’t stop there…after reconsidering and some overt nudging on my part, my boss wanted to revisit the first version…but with some further…modifications.

On the Exterior Artwork, the Winged Heart was replaced with a Lion’s Shield, ribbons were removed, wording changed, etc. The major change was on the Interior Pocket Artwork where the Coy Fish and Lotus Flower were completely deleted and a large Flaming Dagger became the focus. Even though we returned to some of my original ideas, I still lean toward my first attempt.

The elements from this wallet were then worked into a Textile Repeat and placed into various apparel templates as potential future clothing concepts.

So there you go, my first attempt at being a tattoo artist…all-be-it in Photoshop, but a tattoo artist none-the-less.  Enjoy!

Rockin’ Guitar

It’s been a little while since my last post so I wanted to make sure that I got something up here for everyone to see and enjoy.

The last couple of days I’ve been organizing and backing up some of the artwork that I completed during my last few weeks at my previous job. I had done a series of different designs that were printed and were intended too be printed on TYVEK paper and fashioned into designer wallets. One such piece was titled “Rockin’ Guitar.” Like any design or illustration, it went through countless changes and alterations until it was completed and in the can. The more hands and opinions that deliberate over a design, the more likely it is to mutate from version to version. With “Rockin’ Guitar” the changes were more on the color side rather than the design. There were probably about a dozen different subtle versions, but instead of pasting them all up here I thought that I’d show you just a couple of the different color ways.

Above is the Original Thumbnail Sketch that I did to show my concept and how the design would lay into the wallet template. After the concept was approved I moved right on into the computer and began to execute and illustrate the piece. The powers that be requested that the design be multicolored and bright like a rainbow. I was also told to add several more guitars to flesh out the design. Below is the first colored version I completed.

This is the Full Design that wrapped around from the outside right into the interior of the wallet.

Above is the Exterior Artwork of the wallet as it would appear.

This is the Interior Artwork of the design as it would appear when you opened the wallet.

However, after countless changes in the details of the design and several major color alterations, I arrived at the version below.

I prefer the colors in the final version over those in my original coloration, but miss many of the details that my boss elected to remove. Such is the life of a Graphic Designer/Illustrator!

However, the design did not end there. We were working on new designs for our apparel line as well and since I had the elements already drawn and illustrated, I worked it up into a Textile Repeat to be used on both Lounge Pants and Boxers.

Besides the Textile Repeat, I also created the Lounge Pant and Boxer templates that I placed the artwork into. Click on the apparel above if you’d like to see them larger.

Enjoy and keep Rockin’!

Quantum Leap Accelerator

Two years ago I designed a “Quantum Leap” T-Shirt for my brother-in-law Cary for his Birthday. Why “Quantum Leap” you might be asking yourself? Well, when I was younger and Cary was merely dating my sister, it became our weekly ritual. He’d come over to my parent’s house, sometimes with a package of Twizzlers in hand and we’d sit back and enjoy the time traveling escapades of everyone’s favorite Quantum Leaper…Dr. Sam Beckett and Holographic pal Admiral Al Calavicci. So it sort of became our thing. Hell, he even gave me a pair of “Quantum Leap” underwear for Christmas one year…okay…they weren’t really officially licensed “QL” wear, they weren’t “Quantum Leap” in any sort of way.  Rather it was an incredibly nasty gag gift of pseudo-stained underwear that he had taken from his dad’s underwear draw and wrapped very festively for me. So there’s a history of each of us giving each other “QL” merchandise, even when there was no merchandise out there to give. So a couple of years ago for his birthday I decided to design a T-Shirt for him with our favorite subject matter.

Above is a photo of Cary opening said Birthday T-Shirt and grinning from ear to ear.

The story doesn’t end there…fast forward….um, I mean…Quantum Leap forward to a little over two years and here is where the saga resumes.

I was contacted by an individual named Tom Soliva through my Flicker account where I load a majority of my artwork…and one piece of that portfolio is this design. He simply asked, “Is there anyway someone could buy one or more of these shirts?” He explained that there was going to be a 20th Anniversary “Quantum Leap” convention coming up in Los Angeles at the end of March and that he was sure that many fans would love to get a shirt with my design on it. I thanked him for his kind words and interest in my artwork but informed him that “unfortunately, the design was done solely for my own pleasure and not for profit. I do not own the rights to the photographs used in my design and therefore can not profit from them.”  With that he informed me that he would bring my T-Shirt design to the attention of the Convention planning committee.

A couple of days later I was contacted by Brian Greene from “The Leap Back,” the official “Quantum Leap” 20th Anniversary Convention.

He informed me that they had gotten permission to use the photos that I used in my design and would love to be able to use the design on T-Shirts for the convention. After working out the details with Brian, I decided to allow the design to be used because all the profits made from the shirt as well as from the convention itself were going to be going to charity, The Starlight Children’s Foundation.

So if you’d like to purchase a T-Shirt with my design and also help out charity, below is the link that will take you there. Not only has the design been applied to T-Shirts but it has been placed on almost every type of apparel imaginable as well as Mugs, Clocks, Aprons, Bibs, Teddy Bears, Etc…Oh, Boy! So there’s something for every “Quantum Leap” Fan.

CLICK on me to view “Quantum Leap” items

All merchandise is being printed through Cafepress and remember, not only do you get a cool design, you’re helping out Charity.

One of the coolest thing about this situation is the possibility that “Quantum Leap” stars Scott Bakula and Dean Stockwell, and show creator Donald P. Bellisario might see and appreciate my design. Being that I’m such a big fan of the show and it’s special place in my childhood memories, it’s an honor to be able to come full circle and in my way, take part in the monumential 20th Anniversary Celebration. I will not be attending the convention and will not personally be able to meet and greet with the stars and creators, but knowing that my artwork will be there is enough.

If anyone out there that is reading this and is going to attend “The Leap Back,” I would love to hear about your experience and whatever comments anyone involved with the show had to say about my design. If you wanna send me any photos from the convention of Scott, Dean, or Donald wearing or simply you wearing the shirt with them, I’d appreciate and love it. I’d post a follow-up story and post your photos detailing your experience. Also…if you feel compelled and wanna send me an Autographed Photo by any of the individuals attending the convention…that would be super. Hey, you can’t blame a fan for trying.

I hope you enjoy the design and hope to hear back from you.