Sunday, September 27, 2009

Betty and Flathead

Zdepski's Day 1 of Betty Page on a Ford Flathead Motor
Here's day one with the Painter 11 version of Betty Page on a 1952 Flathead Ford motor. The final piece is a period cover of Hot Rod Magazine (Comp Sketch Here), with two of my surfing Tiki gods in the background. The master's class assignment is to do a period cover, with a period celebrity by a period illustrator. I've chosen to work as closely as I can to the style of Gil Elvgren - obviously the king of Pinup from the 40s-70s. The fact that I'm attempting this digitally has it's own challenges. Elvgren worked in a lush impasto, fluid lines and vibrant color. I'm also struggling with the desire to make the engine an accurate portrayal of a pivotal piece of engineering. Many Rat-Rodders will scrutinize every bolt. I have quite a way to go, but it's a good "Day One"
Zdepski's Illustration of a Shrunken Head Tiki Surfer
I spent some time on Saturday colorizing the Shrunken Head Tiki Surfer from August. Every one of these digital projects presents its own challenges, and pleasant surprises. I'm getting quicker and more fluid in my execution. Time is a great teacher.

Click to Enlarge

Saturday, September 26, 2009

IF: Pattern

zdepski's rough set of Communists Old Maid characters
Commies... A whole mess of Commies...

I'm working on a deck of old maid cards, limited edition deck of 54... I have 5 more sets of characters to comp, but I'm nearly there. I plan on marketing them as an art piece, not a "kid's game", although, it is. check my previous post for the card layout design

Click to enlarge

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Soviet Playing Cards

Pining for the Cold War... Things were so much simpler then...
zdepski's Gymnast Soviet Hero for the Old Maid set

zdepski's Cosmonaut Soviet Hero for the Old Maid set

All things being equal in a true Communist state, all cards are of equal value: The Deuce of Spuds.

This idea came to me on Friday during lunch. Now it's a full-blown deck of 21 sets of Old Maid (Old Capitalist) cards. THESE ARE COMPS!!! I know my typography sucks. I need to really work on these. I'm still hashing out the colorizing, but you can see where it's going. The original image was a wax pencil drawing of a "Soviet Hero".

zdepski's base Soviet Hero for the Old Maid set

zdepski's Pencil Group of Soviet Heros for the Old Maid set

I've been developing a number of different games for the dogBabies, Tikis and just plain old fun... Punch-Buggy came from these brain storming sessions. These are part of my broader approach to marketing thrust and turn-key items for production.

zdepski's Soldier Soviet Hero for the Old Maid set

zdepski's Surgeon Soviet Hero for the Old Maid set


Friday, September 18, 2009

IF: Infinite

zdepski's digital illustration of the electric wizard

Off into the Infinite Beyond

I've been haunted by this image since reading Elizabeth Stuckey-French's story The Electric Wizard in the Atlantic Monthly back in 1998. I did a pencil drawing and oil painting back then, but wasn't fully pleased with the results. I have revisited it here for Illustration Friday's word "Infinite". The mystereous kid is killed by a jolt of electricity and vaulted into eternity...


the poor little bastard is a mystery to everyone... no one really has any strong memory about him... He was like the wallpaper in life.

a great read.

Just in from the author:

"Wow! What a wonderful wonderful illustration...I love it. And a great surprise and delight to know you're still thinking about my story. Thanks so much for sending it to me. It's amazing the way you captured the emotional landscape of the story. It's beautiful.

Pencil to Digital - Click to Enlarge.

Punch Buggy

Zdepski's digital illustration of the Punch Buggy game involving Volkswagen products
My brothers and sisters were always, ALWAYS looking for reasons to pound on each other. We had a game called PUNCH-BUGGY that was played while riding, walking or lounging in front of the television. IF a Volkswagen product happened to drive by, the one who saw it and yelled "Punch-Buggy" (or Slap-Buggy, Kick-buggy, etc.) would pound on the person of their choice.

I showed an earlier version to my sister Jean, who disputes some of the model:punishment designations. She recalled a family trip to Philadelphia that happened to take us past a Volkswagen dealership... "lots of bruises and red marks on the legs, arms..."

This was a game that usually ended in Dad yelling or Mom pulling over and threatening corporal punishment.

ahh... the 70s.

Pencil to Digital - Photoshop and Illustrator

Corporal Punishment Series
Click for BIG fun!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

IF: Welcome

zdepski's digital illustration Voodoo Stew
"Welcome, We've saved you a seat..."

Voodoo Stew

The chef gives you a deep bow, or perhaps he's just getting a better look at your meaty legs... i dunno.

a new Tiki Hut piece. i had my sketchbook cracked open while watching the 1933 and then 2005 versions of King Kong. Lots of campy resources of Tiki material there.

pencil and digital
click to enlarge

Monday, September 7, 2009

zany zebra

zdepski's digital illustration of Zeke's Zany Zebra
Zeke's Zany Zebra: The chimps are more interested in the balloon!

Three pages and 7 letters down this weekend... pretty good pace. NOW i have to revise some of the other comps to fit in with my new ideas. Thankfully the project is self initiated, so revisions can happen without pissing any art directors off.

pencil to digital: entirely photoshop this time: Click to enlarge

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Puppies at the Vet

zdepski's dogbaby spread for letters, STUVWX
Six, count them... Six puppies taken care of in a two page spread. S through X

"S is for Stephie, too scared to go
T is for Todd with a tack in his toe.
U for Umeko’s ulcer frustration
V is Vince’s vile vaccination
W is for Wendy’s wart wasting away.
X is for Xander’s exciting X-Ray."

I'm pretty stoked about the colors - gotta mess with a couple more pieces to see if this is the trend in execution.

digital: Painter 11 and Photoshop CS2 - Click to enlarge to a whopping 1200px wide!

best song in the world

Hockey Monkey by The Zambonis... no arguing - accept it.

visit the band's site for Hockey related fun:

Friday, September 4, 2009

IF: Strong

zdepski's painting of Arnold Schwarzenegger as Atlas
Arnold as Atlas, carrier of California's problems. I did a few portraits of the "Govern-ator" back in Hartford this summer in C.F. Payne and Gary Kelley's class. I liked this one the best... totally goofy.

watercolor on fabriano.
click to enlarge