Monday, August 21, 2017


Being a big nerd, I watched NASA both before and after the Solar Eclipse passed over my hometown of Clarksville, TN.  We are lucky enough to be twenty miles outside of ground zero for the longest period of totality during the coast-to-coast wave of awesomeness today! One of the interesting things I learned from the official broadcast was how NASA's earliest research of solar eclipse science comes from drawings.  In the grand scheme of things, the camera is very much a modern invention.  Inspired by the 18th and 19th century drawings shown on the air today, I took to the drawing table this afternoon to create a visionary depiction of my own solar experience!

Monday, July 3, 2017

Topsy-Turvy III at The Roxy

The past few months, I've been really letting my art animal out at the easel here in my home studio.  It felt good to get away from the confines of illustration and just experience the joy of art again.  Over a decade ago, my first solo gallery exhibit was called Topsy-Turvy.  All of the works of art I displayed were created from at least two different perspectives and could be hung in different directions to get a fresh take on the imagery.  The work was fun and I created two bodies of work for exhibits in both 2006 and 2009. These new paintings are created with that style in mind, but with a much lower-brow tone.  The paintings are all free-styled, and just paint spun to canvass from a liberated mind- pure automatism!

Enjoy these previews of the work and check them out in person if you're local!  Topsy-Turvy III will be on display at The Roxy Regional Theatre here in Clarksville through the end of July!  I'll be tabling in-person at the show during the Downtown Art Walk, this Thursday evening, July 6th!  Drop by and see me there!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Predators Posters! (Download and Share the Savageness!)

Everyone has gone bananas for hockey here in Tennessee so I lent some time at the drawing table this week to make some shareable artwork for the Stanley Cup Finals! Go Preds!!! Click on the images to get the full-sized, high-res posters which you can download and share!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

In Memoriam: Chris Cornell

As a teenager, grunge music was a driving force in my life so it is sad to see the likes of Chris Cornell move on from our world.  His music spoke to a generation and I have a feeling it will be around long after I'm gone as well.  For today and until then, thanks Chris for your guiding voice.  Today, I created a visionary portrait in memoriam and jammed out to some Soundgarden...
In Memoriam: Chris Cornell (pen and marker on bristol board / 2017 / Brandt Hardin)

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Pictures from Free Comic Book Day

Today was an absolute blast in Nashville, where I had the chance to see some familiar faces and meet plenty of new fans for Free Comic Book Day!  Special thanks to Rick's Comic City for hosting the event and having a fantastic turnout!  A fun crowd of fellow geeks kept me busy with commissions and conversation all day long- I enjoyed every minute...

My cousin Sam and his partner in crime, Ben dropped by to say hi and got a nice pic of the DREGstudios! Table

Thursday, May 4, 2017

New Art for Star Wars Day!

I hammered out a very surreal Vader today at the DREGstudios! drawing table. Enjoy and May the Fourth be with you...

Surreal Vader (pen and marker on bristol board / 2017 / Brandt Hardin)

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Top 10 Concept Albums

To me, listening to music is often done by putting on full albums.  By listening to an artist's collection of music, it gives each song context.  Often, this roots from the style of music which they were making at the particular time the record was produced.  The very best binge-listening experiences come from a concept- a story which ties the entire record together.  These albums with fully realized stories are referred to as concept albums.  Something deeper is realized and told by the musician over the course of the tracks.  Here are my personal favorites... click on the album names to read their stories and let me know about your own favorite concept albums in the comments section below!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Rivers and Spires: A Thank You for the Memories and Opportunities

Here in my hometown of Clarksville, TN, The Rivers and Spires Festival has become an annual tradition and one I'll always hold a fondness for.  This year was to be it's 15th and final year, yet the remainder of the weekend was unfortunately cancelled due to inclement weather.  It seems this is a sad note for the community to part ways on so I wanted to extend my own heartfelt thanks and goodbyes.  

Rivers and Spires had been around a few years before I really got serious about art in my mid-twenties.  The festival became a local event where I first broke through some barriers as far as finding ways to display my artwork to the public.  I quickly found my work stuck out like a sore thumb, got funny looks, gasps, laughs, and eventually collectors who would seek me out and even become friends.  At first, I started out sharing booth spaces with other artists and splitting the cost.  This eventually gave me the courage to attend other art fairs outside town and now as of recent years, attend comic and horror conventions as well.

As I developed a relationship with our local festival, I also was honored to win their Poster Contest two consecutive years in 2010 and 2011.  It was a cool feeling seeing my custom artwork displayed on billboards, fliers, t-shirts, and the official festival poster around town leading up to the event!  It's an experience I'll never forget and one which gave me plenty of confidence in my abilities as a growing artist.  

Rivers and Spires began as a celebration of a recently-rebuilt town after the 1999 tornado which destroyed much of Downtown Clarksville.  Over the next couple of years, we'll see many more additions to the downtown area again.  As we feel the swell of ever-expanding Nashville, the city grows and grows.  I'm excited for the changes- a new downtown park which is about to break ground, a new arts center as the Roxy expands, and even a Barnes and Noble bookstore will all be here before we know it.  

The ending of Rivers and Spires will be the passing of a torch to a new Clarksville and I'm hopeful for things to come!   Many thanks to the entire event staff and every single local volunteer who offered their time to make Rivers and Spires a wonderful event each year (rain or shine)!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

End Prohibition NOW!

Happy 4/20 from DREGstudios!  The past several weeks, I've been letting my mind bend and playing with paints like it's 2005 but today got me back to the drawing table!  As a proponent of dancing with Mary Jane, I was compelled to draw a small ganja-inspired tribute to the sweet leaf today.  Here's the finished illustration along with some process pictures!

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Top 10 Movie Picks of 2016

Movies take us all to different places and I for one enjoy the escape when I can grab a couple of hours, buckle up, and take a voyage which (more often than not) costs millions of dollars to create. Cinema is one of the reasons we live in the most magnificent time in the history of the arts.  Each year, I compose my own Top 10 list of the films which I found to be my own favorites from the previous year.  It's a way to share my love of film and hopefully give you some suggestions on what to watch when you too have a few hours and are ready to escape.  Making my annual list is never short task.  First I keep a running list throughout the year of the films which I think have a chance of winding up on this post. Mulling over these notations around Oscar season, I get to relive their impressions on me as I revisit them in my mind and decide which I'd like to write about.  I always try to fit in a few I hope you haven't heard of, a few which may be awards contenders, and perhaps even a couple of summer blockbusters.  Here are my favorite flicks of 2016...