Thursday, June 30, 2011


Here is another design for the Bible/Sunday School clothing line.  The knight would have been stitched on a baseball cap or a small polo shirt.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Jonah and the Whale

In my version of this story, Jonah catches the whale while fishing.  It's more fun than getting swallowed by the great fish.
This is a paper sculpture with digital clouds added post-production.

Jonah and the Whale, December 2004

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Heavenly Sunshine

Let's do a week of Vacation Bible School, art style.  Sorry, there are no snow cones or prizes for being the best-behaved.  Here is another design for the clothing line I mentioned yesterday.

I posted this one a few months back, but it bears repeating.  (Bears?  Bares?  Not sure.)  Tater was all excited about a movie his class was going to see at school.  Tater says, "I can't wait!  We're gonna see Diarrhea of a Wimpy Kid!"

Monday, June 27, 2011

This Little Light of Mine

I made some Bible/Sunday School illustrations for a group looking to launch a clothing line for children.  Here is my first one, This Little Light of Mine.  I imagined it stitched on a little toddler polo shirt.

Tater got the chance to see newborn kittens with their mother.  Tater says, "Aww...look at those little kitties.  They're drinking milk right from their mommy's pimples."

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Shaman Bear

I redesigned my bear slightly smaller, but much deeper with more peaks and valleys.  This one was made with a new faux wood mixture.  Faux malachite makes up the silhouette of the Native American Shaman.  A leather strap was carefully glued around the outside of the bear.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Penguins cutout

These penguins were inked and colored on illustration board, then meticulously cut out using x-acto knives.  I must have gone through about a dozen or so x-acto blades with this one!

Penguins cutout, August 1992

While riding in the car, Tater and I spotted a very large groundhog.  Tater says, "Dad!  Look at that!  It's a platypus!"

Monday, June 20, 2011

Tater says...

I'm starting a new mini feature called "Tater says."  Tater is my son, Stephen and he really comes up with some funny stuff.  And I know if I don't write some of it down, I'll soon forget some of these nuggets.  I know all our kids say funny stuff and Tater is not unique in that regard.  But, hopefully, you'll get a chuckle or two from some of these postings.

Here is a shot of Tater breakin' bad in Gotham City.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Explorer Harrison Ford

This character is loosely based on Indiana Jones, portrayed by Harrison Ford.  He even has an embossed scar on his paper chin.  Additionally, there is the leather jacket, artifact bag, and fedora.
As for the process, the explorer is all paper sculpture.  There is also a miniature yellow light bulb wired behind the torch that actually lights up this cave scene.  The background cave paintings, based on Altamira,  were accomplished with stencils, sponges and inks.  Many dark colored inks were dripped on heavy watercolor paper to make up the cave rocks.  This piece is 20" x 16" and about 4 inches thick.

Caveman, Lighting the Way, July 2003

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Clint Eastwood brush & ink

This was supposed to be airbrushed with colored inks, but I either never got around to it or I liked the stark black and white better.
I'll never win any awards for this one, but it was another step in my pursuit of art.

Clint Eastwood brush & ink, November 1991

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Lucille Ball paper sculpture

Earlier this month, I posted an illustration board cutout of Lucille Ball.  Here is an airbrushed paper sculpture of Lucy with an old black and white background of the Hollywood hills.   

Lucille Ball paper sculpture, March 2004

Sunday, June 12, 2011

African Wild Ass Tribal Mask

Such language!  You can call it a donkey if you want.
I've had the support piece finished for this mask for quite some time.  The support piece gets wrapped in aluminum foil and the faux wood clay is molded over the support.  This support was actually made to create a zebra mask, but the pinhead design would have gotten in the way of the mane.  So, I looked for another ungulate and the African Wild Ass seemed like a good choice.
This mask was made to be a pendant but it has two antique copper-colored rings on the back so it could be hung on the wall or in a shadow box frame as well.  The stems on the pins were cut to size and bent in half so that they should not slip out of the clay.  This mask pendant is a chunky 3 3/8" tall.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Batman Box Art

I've always been a big Batman fan.  When the animated series came out in the early 90's, I wanted to have every episode on video tape.  And I couldn't just record them and slop any old label on the tapes.  So, I ordered a whole case of black video boxes and inked my own artwork for the outer sleeve.  The box art even included graphics for the spine of the box.

Batman Box Art, October 1992

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Samurai Shield Bugs

Here is another digital paper sculpture, Samurai Shield Bugs.  When you look at this insect upside-down, the shape and markings resemble a face or a mask.
All the patterns are created in Photoshop.  Then the patterns are printed on archival card stock and cut out.  The edges of each cutout piece is rounded using embossing tools.  Another, smaller, piece of card stock is cut out and glued behind each cutout piece.  This helps the embossed edges to hold their shape.  Then, using the original drawing as a guide, the cutouts are glued together to form the finished art.  Small pieces if illustration board and foam core are used to raise various areas of the piece to give it dimensionality.

 Samurai Shield Bugs, May 2008

Monday, June 6, 2011


Making a nice piece of art is great, unless the photography is lacking.  Lighting is everything.  Flash is out of the question.  Harsh lighting, like flash, is unflattering when used on people and even more unkind when used on artwork.  Natural lighting is the way to go.  Here are two examples.

The first lion was taken using natural lighting, but it was strong sunlight streaming through a large open window.  It's very harsh and the shadows hide some of the details.

Here is the same lion.  I took him outside on a bright sunny morning, but the photo was taken in the shade behind a big white building.  I also positioned the shot slightly higher.  It makes the lion look more vulnerable, and cuter.  Big difference, huh?

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Faux Wood Hippo

Here is the third in my Faux Wood Animal series.  The first one, a panda, took the better part of a month to complete.  Number two was a lion, and it took three weeks to finish.  This one took 2 weeks.  So I am improving, but I'm not there yet.
As with my other animals, this is made from Premo polymer clay and it is made to be a pendant.  It could, however, hang on a small wall or be displayed in a shadow box.  It is approximately 1 3/4" tall and wide.
All my polymer clay stuff is available at  Look for Fauxhead, that's me.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Lucille Ball cutout

This caricature of Lucy was inked, airbrushed and cut out of illustration board.  I usually ruined a half  dozen x-acto blades freeing one of these projects from the thick board.

Lucille Ball, January 1992

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Puss Moth Caterpillar

This was my last paper sculpture.  As with the last 20 or 30 paper sculptures I did, the color patterns were made in Photoshop and printed.  The patterns were then cut out, manipulated and assembled into the finished piece.  So, many of my paper sculptures look digital, when, in fact, they are paper sculptures made from digitally produced patterns.

  Puss Moth Caterpillar, August 2009