Monday, July 24, 2006


Originally uploaded by stymie924.
One thing I try to do as often as possible is to sketch. Sketching from life, from television, from my imagination...

A particularly fun thing I enjoy is taking favorite scenes from films and attempting to recreate them as quickly as possible in color using Photoshop. This keeps me sharp--sort of the drawing equivalent of doing windsprints. I also cannot rely just on draftsmanship, I have to be thinking in terms of color, mood, light...

This scene is from The Mission starring Robert DeNiro. I wasn't after a likeness, rather, I was trying to quickly capture the overall palette and feel of the scene as it appeared in the film.

Friday, July 21, 2006


Originally uploaded by stymie924.
I came across this book today while doing some online research on Howard Pyle. Pyle was, and is, considered to be one of the greatest American Illustrators that ever lived. N.C. Wyeth was a protoge' of his, as were several other illustrators who lived and worked during the early twentieth century.

I love Pyle's work for its simplicity, its technique. I also admire his ability to place the viewer right in the middle of the action. It has to be said that nobody paints pirates like Pyle.

Tonight I was back at it, painting on canvases again. It's a different animal from digital art. You have to work--execise, almost. Some days it's easier than others...

Saturday, July 15, 2006


I AM BLESSED-with a beatiful, funny, quirky wife and a movie-start cute kid! I also have the best dog in the world. To have a job doing what I love.

I WANT-to be liked.

I WISH-I could take a year off and do nothing but sculpt. I were a better painter.

I HATE-That I am so sensitive--that I read too much into people's interactions with me. That I need to be liked. That I sometimes talk to much. Bill O'Reilly.

I MISS-South CArolina. Camp Cherokee. Playing soccer. Doing theatre.

I FEAR-Cancer. Losing my wife, my son.

I HEAR-The air-conditioner in my office. MVY radio online out of Martha's Vinyard.

I WONDER-If illustration is what I was meant to do... If I'll get any better as an artist. If Leo will be an artist or will he rebel against all things creative.

I REGRET-Not going to art school. Some past job interviews.

I AM NOT-Untalented. Skinny. A redneck. Black.

I DANCE-better than my wife.

I SING-in church every Sunday at 8:45.

I CRY-more than I am comfrotable even admitting...

I AM NOT ALWAYS-a good Christian. Happy. Sad.

I MAKE WITH MY HAND-art. Lots and lots of art.

I WRITE-like a child with a crippled hand.

I CONFUSE-Chipotle and cilantro...

I NEED-Friends close by. Something to draw. My family. My wife. My son. To be appreciated as an artist.

I SHOULD-be inside with Mandy. Get a new hard drive for my mac. Get my iPod fixed.

I START-illustrating a book on Monday.

I FINISH-very few ambitious projects I start on my own..

Tuesday, July 11, 2006


Originally uploaded by stymie924.
Yes, I know I have been way absent from the "blogospehere" but I have been consumed with work/fatherhood/general malaise. I have been grappling these past months with a wee bit of the old depression--otherwise known on the street as, "the pity party." I apologize to any and all faithful readers of the 'smear who have been missing me. I am back, for now...

Yes, I have been a-wallowing in the pit of semi-despair (more like semi-sadness--or whiny-ness) of late. However, art continues to be an area of comfort for me and I am happy to have some time to try something different--painting on canvas. This is something that I enjoy doing--though time doesn't always permit it.

This is an as yet unfinished large canvas in a series of canvases entitled "Men with Hats" since I somehow always end up painting men in the 1930's style with those fedora hats on. I don't know why, it's just something that I have always done. Subconsciously, I guess it's all about what I grew up with. My Grandfather was always wearing one of those hats (never indoors!!). In all the pictures I saw of him over the years, he had the same stern--yet placid expression on his face and a-top his head was always one of those hats. Later in life, it was a Tom Landry/Bear Bryant-style hat--the kind with the little feather in the side of the brim. Anyway, y'all let me know what you think...