Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Heroes and Villains SKETCHBOOK PROJECT

Green Lantern / graphite on paper / 2012
It's the last day of January and I succeeded by the skin of my teeth in completing two Superhero Projects to kick off 2012.  My Hero | My Villain was a very successful exhibit this past Saturday night at No Egrets Tattoo here in Clarksville.  After the riotous bedlam of this one night event, it was right back to the drawing table Sunday and Monday to finish up my Sketchbook Project for Brooklyn Art Library in New York.  The theme assigned to me was Heroes and Villains and the book had to be postmarked today for its inclusion.  I'm happy to say it is on its way in care of the good folks at the USPS.

With this new book of graphite illustrations, I now have three different volumes of my work included in Brooklyn Art Library's permanent collection.  Patrons can sit down and flip through literally thousands of sketchbooks from artists living at all corners of the globe.  My previous submissions were much more lowbrow where I went through and covered the books in a plethora of wild imagery with my trusty markers.  This year, I decided to take a more tradition route and do actual sketches with only pencil.  In my everyday illustration, I generally do preliminary sketches but don't build them up much, only using it as a guide for my inked linework.  Each of the 14 comic characters took about 2-3 hours each to get them where I wanted them using only the medium of a mechanical pencil. 
Thanos / graphite on paper / 2012
Daredevil / graphite on paper / 2012
The Heroes and Villains sketchbook will go on a World Tour before finding a permanent home on the shelves of the Brooklyn Art Library.  Cities hosting the tour include Chicago, Portland (Oregon AND Maine,) Philadelphia, Atlanta, Austin, San Francisco and Los Angeles.  The book will travel internationally also to Vancouver and Toronto in Canada, Melbourne in Austalia and London, England.  Click HERE for the official calendar to see where you can catch the tour LIVE and in person!  Can't make it in person?  Check out this video of the entire book!

Sunday, January 29, 2012


Photo by Joe Melanson
Joe Melanson harnessed every molecular bit of his superhero art powers this month to build up, hype and create the explosion which was a ONE NIGHT ONLY event last night at No Egrets Tattoo here in Clarksville.  A steady stream of folk perused the plethora of heroic and villainous scenes created by a dozen or so regional artists and experienced my interactive installation courtesy of four Superhero Theme Music Tracks composed my buddy Dustin TEADS Wright!  I'll be high off the buzz of this show for weeks... what a night!

For the past month, I've been living and breathing comic lore by creating new illustrations as well as four new paintings to go along with the tracks TEADS concocted by fusing clips from the heroes' movies and shows with his own dubstep and metal versions of the TV theme songs for Batman, Spiderman, and The Incredible Hulk while borrowing from Black Sabbath for Iron Man.  The final result was an interactive experience which gave the viewers another dimension in this surreal experience!

All the previews were finally over and the end product was here as last night it all went down.  My Hero | My Villain was a thrilling experience for me to see so many eyes and ears on my new work and collaboration with TEADS.  Thanks to everyone who bared the cold to be our audience!  My Super-Art Wife Aurora took most of these wonderful pics capturing the night...

Thursday, January 26, 2012

She's POISON for My Hero | My Villain THIS Saturday!

Inks on Bristol / 2012
We're down to the wire for My Hero | My Villain Exhibit curated by Joe Melanson at No Egrets Tattoo this Saturday night at 7PM.  I'll be in the flesh, painting live and watching people dance to my interactive exhibit where four NEW paintings will have headphones hooked up to them with dubstep Superhero Theme tracks composed by TEADS!

I want to give you one last preview of the show since we're 48 hours away.  In addition to the interactive paintings, I'll be exhibiting some new illustrations including a Rogues Gallery of some of my own favorite villains in 5in x 7in form including the likes of Bizarro Superman, Carnage, Brainiac and our feature here today, Poison Ivy!

After you check out the process pictures below, drop by The Leaf-Chronicle's website with an insightful and in-depth look into the local art scene written by Karen Parr-Moody by CLICKING HERE!  She gives a great promo for My Hero | My Villain and the story at some of the artists involved.

It's pretty tight and tiny work as I outline the vines in green...

Of course there is a THIRD EYE in my form and fashion!

Completed Line Work
I want to see YOU in a set of my headphones Saturday!  Drop by No Egrets Tattoo here in Clarksville THIS Saturday night from 7-10PM! 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

ART (and PEACE) for your EARS

THIS Saturday night, I'll be involved with My Hero | My Villain, a ONE NIGHT ONLY Group Art exhibit at No Egrets Tattoo Studio here in Clarksville featuring a plethora of regional artists who are creating a lowbrowpalooza of the south with Joe Melanson and the shop's help.  If you've been missing out on these exhibits, I'm upping the ante this time around with a MULTIMEDIA exhibit that you can ONLY experience LIVE this Saturday.  My boy TEADS has been mixing up some dubstep theme tracks to go with four portraits I've painted in Superhero Surrealism for the show.  His tracks will be featured on headphone sets which will be hung with the art so the viewer can listen and look to experience this multimedia experience!
Last night, I got a little crafty when I was playing with the headphone sets I purchased to use in the installation this Saturday.  Using some of my foil peace sign stickers, I made the headsets a little more DREGish...
The stickers themselves were just a hair too big for the stickers so I cut our the center bones of the peace signs!

The silver borders on the headphones set them off- it was like it was meant to be!

You can try one on THIS Saturday night!

I wanted to challenge myself with this installation by creating four NEW paintings.  I've only really been painting the past few years live and in group situations so the work for My Hero | My Villain is new territory for me in more ways than one!  RSVP at the Facebook Event Page to come this Saturday and see what IRON MAN is drinking, how the HULK transforms, what bit SPIDERMAN, and BATMAN in a straight jacket!  All four paintings will feature original theme music composed by TEADS!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

IRON MAN on the Rocks

Acrylic on Canvas / 2012
January is full of heroism and villainy here at DREGstudios as we prepare for My Hero | My Villain curated by Joe Melanson at No Egrets Tattoo ONE NIGHT ONLY on Saturday, January 28th!

I've spent the past few Sundays teaming up with Amateur Supervillain Charles "Wolfie" Bennett at his lair of acrylic and gouache solitude to paint new material for this unique exhibit.  I am doing four acrylic paintings on canvas which will be the basis of a collaborative multi-media display you can ONLY EXPERIENCE IN PERSON!

On New Year's Day, I showed you the first painting- HULK SMASH! and I've kept a tight seal on my Spiderman which I painted the Sunday after.  Alas, I do have new treats today though with some process pictures from my Iron Man painting.  I decided to go with the old school original armor suit Tony Stark donned long before he became the drunk we love and adore today in reds and golds.  I teamed this Golden Age relic up with his modern habit of the drink though.  What do you figure a billionaire superhero sips on?

To see the final products, I hope you make it out to the exhibit next weekend!  For now, check out these process pictures from my painting session at The Wolfman's...

Sunday, January 15, 2012


The Spy Vs. Spy Comic Strip from MAD Magazine celebrated 50 years last year, dating all the way back to 1961.  Antonio Prohias, a Cuban cartoonist, created the spies and pitted them against one another in the epic and endless game of cat and mouse, of black and white, of assassination and covert destruction.  The violence and flip flopping action was consistent and made the title the enterprise it is today with trading cards, video games, and animation all rooting from the original black & white strip, to which MAD gave a world-wide audience!

If you're just dropping by in this young year, I'm neck deep in superhero and comic lore for two art projects this month, one of which this preview is for today.  On Saturday, January 28th, Joe Melanson will be curating My Hero | My Villain which will be a ONE NIGHT ONLY extravaganza of visual delight.  Comic vendors, LIVE Body Painting, LIVE Music, LIVE Photography and More will keep you busy where I hope you find my own new works including this TOPSY-TURVY: Spy Vs. Spy which will be framed to hang in either direction!  I have to get it colored along with more brand spanking new illustrations AND four Superhero Paintings which will be on display WITH interactive headphones to listen to original tracks my boy TEADS is mixing up!

Bomb Linework / Ink on Bristol / 2012

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday the 13th (Have a Lucky Day)

There is a term to label the condition of folks afraid of the Fridays which fall on the assumingly unlucky 13th of any given month- it is called friggatriskaidekaphobia. Now say that three times fast and roll the dice baby!  Such superstition surrounding this macabre number date back hundreds of years, mainly due to the irregularity of this number which follows the coveted number 12.  Twelve is the number of wholeness or completeness: 12 having its own term in goods as a dozen, 12 months in the year, 12 Gods of Olympus, 12 Disciples of Christ and so on... By following this holy number, the awkward 13 gets a bad rap as the red-headed stepchild of the numeric system.  

Friday itself takes its own dark undertones from history even without the double-helping of fear brought on by aligning with the 13th day of the month.  Jesus was crucified on a Friday and the worst stock market crash in history was on a Friday- dubbed Black Friday. Friday was even demonized as a dark day as far back as in the 14th century with Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales.  Of course, context is everything as you'll find Tuesday the 13th to be ominous day of bad luck in Spanish and Greek-speaking countries.
Here's a blast from the past with an illustration from my Topsy-Turvy series called Lucky Lucky!
Inks on Paper / 2006

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

The Joker (in the Eyes of Pop Surrealism)

BAM! POOF! BANG!  I'm movin' right along this month with my two superhero themed projects which will culminate at the end of the month with My Hero | My Villain (an art exhibit at No Egrets Tattoo) and The Sketchbook Project (which will tour the globe in a traveling interactive exhibit before being housed in The Brooklyn Art Library.)  Here's a second helping from The Sketchbook Project where my assigned theme is Heroes & Villains...
Graphite on Paper / 2012

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Dark Knight (in a Straight Jacket)

I'm in superfanboy mode here at DREGstudios! this week with two comic-themed projects this month.  I'm knee deep in my comics and graphic novels scouring for ideas to fill up a sketchbook for Art House Co-op, who do some wonderful group projects collaborating artists from across the globe.  I've previously participated in two of their Sketchbook Projects, from the which my entries are housed in The Brooklyn Art Library with thousands of others artists' work open to public viewing.  Past Sketchbook Projects have gone on tour across the United States, Canada, and Europe before resting on the shelves of this one-of-a-kind library.

For their 2012 World Tour Project, themes were given and I was assigned "Heroes and Villains."  Irony and laws of attraction always seem to align with the compulsion to create taking me by the seat of my pants.  I'm also slated to do an interactive installation at My Hero / My Villain at No Egrets Tattoo here in Clarksville (a one-night extravaganza on January 28th.)  Check out my New Year's Day HULK SMASH post for more!

As the next couple of weeks pass, I'll be giving you some previews of the work for these shows.  Today's sneak peek is special though because it will really be the only work which bridges both the My Hero / My Villain exhibit AND my Sketchbook Project.  Bats is always my favorite because he doesn't have any powers, he's just insane; this insanity being the inspiration behind my first sketch for my Heroes and Villains theme.  I'll also be doing a painting from this sketch for my interactive display at the end of the month!

Batman as the patient at Arkham? 

Friday, January 6, 2012

Fundraising and Awareness through Art

Last month, I wrote about a new illustration, "Geisha for a Cure" which I created for Visual AIDS, a nonprofit organization who raises money and awareness for AIDS research through artists and their creations!  [Click HERE for my blog entry if you missed out.] This weekend, Postcards from the Edge opens at Cheim & Read Gallery in New York City at 547 W 25th Street.  If you are in the area, drop by to view and purchase postcard-sized artworks donated from artists across the globe!

A little closer to home here in Clarksville, you can pick up some autographed prints at another fundraiser entitled Lupus Sucks! This one-night event will be held at The Coup at 819 Crossland Avenue.  I've donated 10 different reproductions of my work and proceeds will got to The Lupus Foundation.  The artwork will be sold in a silent auction open to the public with LIVE Music and Entertainment.  The event starts at 8PM and you can Click HERE for the Facebook Event Page to RSVP!  Here are a few of the prints you can take home from the benefit...

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Top 10 Movie Picks of 2011

If you couldn’t tell already by being here, I love art in all of its forms as channels for human expression.  Film is one of the highest arts, taking teamwork, planning and of course months of execution to create.  For years I’ve loved talking about film with my friends and debating who would be worthy of our own praise.  Last year, I decided to begin a tradition of posting my own Top 10 Movies of the Year (Click here for my 2010 Picks!)  
inks on bristol / 2011
2011 was a great year for cinema and there were some tough cuts I had to make from a list which was constantly being revised throughout the year.  Some genuinely good movies with huge production value such as Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Limitless, and Water for Elephants (one of my wife’s favorites, based on a novel she loves) made my list initially but got bumped in the end.  Acting doesn’t always carry a film to the finish line with me either.  Look for Woody Harrelson to get an Oscar nod for his balls-out psychological portrayal of an anti-hero dirty LAPD officer in Rampart, a movie worthy of note that could only be carried so far by some really nice acting.  But hey, you don’t want to hear about who didn’t make the cut, right?  Let’s get to the films which did make my list this year…

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Gifts from a Family Who Know Me...

I'm delighted that this past holiday was one of the better ones in recent memory getting to see all of my family happy and moving toward better times.  The Christmas / New Years rush is one of the craziest times of the year and we're all still recovering from it this week even with the fevered atmosphere about us leading these American lives.  I'm blessed to have your audience and blessed to have my friends and family.  Most importantly, I'm thankful for people who know and understand the teetering insanity driving the pulsating urge to create- the lighting in the bottle in my brain.  My family followed through in style in feeding the beast.  First, my Sister and Bro-in-Lawz got me a gift card to Snobby Lobby which will come in handy very soon I'm certain.
My wife Aurora got me this awesome mini MUNNY!  I get to paint him sometime this year when things calm down a bit.  Each one of these dudes from kidrobot comes with a MUNNY shaped sticker to color and a MYSTERY Item- mine is an AXE!  I'll post some process pictures later on when I get to him.
My wife also got me art in another form with a few graphic novels I wanted included an awesome Elseworlds Superman... the Elseworlds DC series are a weakness of mine!  In these books, alternate realities and time periods are created to show what these superheros would be like in another time and space.

Every year I take a portion of my Christmas Bonus from my top secret day job as a Marketing Manager and I spend it re-upping my marker supply.  Here's what I got in the mail today from Cheap Joe's... they don't call him Cheap for nuttin'- you can't beat $1.99 Prismacolors with a stick... or a MUNNY Axe for that matter.  I even snagged a few NEW colors I've never had before!

Another neato parting holiday fact: The Incredible Hulk painting I posted from New Year's Day is on a canvas my father got me for Christmas this year!  Click HERE to see the painting!

Have a prosperous 2012 dear viewer- I hope you find the encouragement you need to see your own dreams through.  I wouldn't be creating without the belief of those around me.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Hulk Smash on New Year's Day

Kablam!  I'm kicking off 2012 on the right foot today after a five hour painting session at The Wolfman's house where we were working on new eye goodies for My Hero / My Villain, our next art exhibit at No Egrets Tattoo Studio and curated by Joe Melanson.  This one night exhibit takes place Saturday, January 28th!  Check out the Facebook Event page and RSVP when you Click HERE!

Here's my Transformation of the Incredible Hulk which I pounded out today as my first piece which will be displayed!  

Click HERE for the HULK SMASH Music Video!!!

Check out the process pictures below from start to finish of the Big Green Nasty...