Thursday, November 4, 2010

Summer Presents

So you may be looking at getting a gift for someone in the near future and your eye may just hit a piece of my art on Redbubble. Maybe it could be A calendar, a greeting card, a framed print, a tee, or even a sticker. What I'd recommend is dropping in to the store quickly and having a good look around but ensure you enter in a brand new code for 15% reduction:

and this should work right up until the 14th of November

and should you like my 365Notepads items you can use this code to get the equivalent 15% off till the 14th of November:


Monday, June 7, 2010

A Day of Drawing

Last Saturday marked the day of sketching for a considerably number of people around the world with the officially title Drawing Day 2010 starting and finished a good number of sketches, doodles and other such stuff. The rule being that the sketches had to start and finish on the day.

My own efforts involved a coffee shop in Parkdale , a plate of french toast, two coffees and a pot of tea to come back with 4 sketches

And I'm quite happy with my sketches.

But this isn't all about me. If you have a look at the Red Bubble group for the day you'll notice that there are stupendous amounts of sketches and more will probably still be rolling in over the next few days.

Now since they are aiming to have quite a few sketches for the day (the aim is 1,000,000) then I should feel it is my duty to direct you to a few images from other artists who do make wonderful images. Ensure you click through to look at there work properly.

And so if you do feel like you want to get into such a project next year I recommend this one. For a fun day whittling away the hours with a marker of your choice it's great to pass the time and relax.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Illustrator Interview - Simon Sherry

For most people the ability to call on numerous demons, creatures of the night and gigantic robots of destruction would be enough to pass the time but illustrator and creative mind Simon Sherry still has ideallistic views of taking over the world as a dastardly villain.

Well, at least, it seems that way anyway.

With a definitive style of jagged dark lines, silhouettes and limited tone shading you could be fooled to thinking that a tee or a poster may not contain much detail but you'd be wrong. From the meticulous fluid lines inside a Killbot™ to the hairs on the chest of a gun toting Ace of Clubs his attention to detail is superb and the creations leap off the page and into the mind of the viewer.

VC - Most illustrators have found that inspiration comes from there childhood and what literature inspired them. What is the picture book or comic that started you wanting to draw?

SS - I can point to four things:
  1. The Masters of the Universe toys and box art. If you’ve never seen the original box art, I recommend checking it out – it’s an awesome mix of Frazetta-style sword and sorcery and Flash Gordon Sci-fi pulp. Can’t go past Barbarians and robots! The miniature comics and storybooks that came packaged with the toys also fired up my imagination, and probably sowed the seeds for my love of pulp fantasy.
  2. Warlock of Firetop Mountain and the whole Fighting Fantasy gamebook series – again, an amazing array of art both on and between the covers.
  3. Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are and In the Night Kitchen – pure fuel for the imagination.
  4. Larry Elmore’s art on the Dungeons and Dragons gamebooks – take a look at the red box artwork of the basic set for an example of what I mean (I’ll give you a hint, one lone warrior versus one very big and angry dragon).

VC - Have any of your killbots ever been arrested for disturbing the peace?

SS - Not that I’m aware of – although it’s possible that someone’s tried – the bodies just haven’t been found yet.

VC - What is your best inspiration when having a creative blockage(your plumbing muse so to speak)?

SS - Playing with the kids, random scribbling on paper or monitor, loud music in the ears and a short walk – all of these things have been known to kickstart my creativity.

MF - You have a range of different projects that have been completed including Killbots™, Deck of Cards and The Game of Kings™, What other projects are currently sitting in the docking bay?

VC - Well, I’m pretty excited about the next phase of Game of Kings. People have seen the ‘cast’ that make up the two opposing sides of the board, so the next step is to have them duke it out. We’ve managed to bring some new recruits into the fold to lend their own particular brand of artistic muscle to the endeavour, and I think we’re going to end up with a pretty awesome collection of work to show you all later in the year.

Aside from that, I’ve been assembling my own fictional concept band as part of a challenge being run over at redbubble, and slowly but surely gathering steam with a couple of other ideas that will hopefully see the light of day sooner rather than later. One of them involves a certain undead egg, and I’m pretty eager to get onto it…

VC - I have heard that you are a fan of your Wacom (on occasions it could be seen as a deity of drawing) Is there any other equipment that you are especially fond of?

SS - I think that if I didn’t have a Wacom in my arsenal, I’d be a pretty sad fellow. These days it’s pretty much my primary tool of the trade, although I still like to break out the ballpoint and paper on occasion. I’m keen to try my hand at a bit of sculpture, but like a lot of things, it’s something I haven’t managed to get to yet ;o)

VC - If you had to have any movie/tv series alien as a pet, where would you keep them(oh and which alien)?

SS - He doesn’t really count as an alien, but a miniaturized Godzilla would be perfect. Not only would he be a great conversation starter, but I could set him loose on the neighborhood teens when they get on my lawn.

VC - Should the world be attacked by intergalactic demons with swords would you:
a) Turn on Killbots 7 and 8. 7 to destroy them and 8 to have a cup of tea.
b) Unleash the Bullrock, or at least leave the sidegate open for it to go on a rampage across the land.
c) Politely inquire with the Queen of Diamonds to stare them down.
d) Save the file, go to bed and look forward to finishing the sketch in the morning.

SS - Well…

a) Odds are that no. 7 would turn on me instead, dysfunctional as it is, and I don’t think I’d ever be game to try the concoction no. 8 calls ‘tea’ – I’ve seen what it does with it’s victims, and I’m convinced that liquid has more in common with Soylent Green than Twinnings.
b) Not unless I like the idea of being either stomped or incinerated, or both.
c) She’d probably end up striking a deal with them and taking me out herself.
d) That sounds like the safest bet ;o)

All images in this interview are by the awesomeness that is Simon Sherry . If I could claim any credit for them I would but I have a fear of Killbots that stops me acting unethically

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Photography Interview - Paul Louis Villani

As a new person to the wonders of art on the web my first impression of Paul came from meeting him at a few walks around the Botanic Gardens. With a dominating hieght you can be fooled by Paul being a dangerous person but his demeanor, friendliness and smile dismiss all of that in an instant. And this is all before he starts picking up his camera.
When he does get his hands into the artwork it seems that light, sky, trains, instruements and models are his bread and butter. His extensive collection of shots vary from all around Melbourne's industrial scene burning vivid colours and images into your mind. From trains, models and automobiles everything that stands in front of Paul's wide angle becomes a vivid story layered in history.

VC - What inspired you to first pick up a camera?

PLV - Mum. She was always the designated photographer at all family events, eventually becoming official wedding photographer at a few matrimonies along the way. She wasn't a trained pro but she loved capturing people at play. Other inspirations come from my earliest memories of band and musician photography. The covers of albums and the covers of The Rolling Stone magazine are definitely some of the first things that piqued my interest in what a photographer can do.

VC - You have a heavy influence of music in your photos and, evidently, you are a musical person at heart. If you had to choose any band to photograph the album art for, who would it be and what would you think you’d like to do?

PLV -  Oh dear... only one band?? ;p
I sometimes feel a little strange about being so "into" the era of music from 1966 to 1976... I say this because I was born in 1970 and logistically should've been influenced by the mid eighties to the mid nineties but...
The imagery that was created for and about musicians during that time (late 60's early 70's) still inspires me today.
So, to answer your question (before I blabber on about music for the next 10 hours!!! hehe!) I would love to photograph musicians like Muse, The Killers, System of a Down, Lady Gaga, David Bowie, Plant and Krauss, Jack White, Sarah Blasco, Missy Higgins, The Arctic Monkeys, Peaches and Wolfmother... You can see why it is very difficult to narrow that all down to just one!! :)
The way I'd shoot them... well that would all depend on their brief and their imminent needs but if it was up to me it would be something avant garde... create a new and visual world within a controlled setting and let the musicians shine whether that be by their own personality or by creatively nurturing an alter ego yet to be exposed... that would be joyful photographic challenge!

VC - Your fascination for rust and grime in industrial photos seems to be boundless. Have you ever dismissed items that are too clean?

PLV - Too clean... LOL!! :D
I'm sure I've walked past many "clean" scenes and just put the camera away but these scenes can sometimes be (visually) absolute magic!
Minimalistic vastness, bland hues and different shades of grey... to be able to photographically "see" more than what is already there, that can be the recipe for some pure art.

VC - Are freight trains better than passenger trains?

PLV - Yes. ...and no! Passenger trains are cool but freighters just seem to have rustic and charismatic qualities. Before photography took over my life trains were kind of passé' in my world.
It wasn't until I spent some creative time in country Victoria that I began to understand and appreciate the whole "rail" thing and the robust beauty of a freight train.
We are all intrinsically drawn to things that have qualities we admire or aspire to... I often wonder if that's the reason why I enjoy capturing trains in general.
They are strong, powerful, dependable and necessary, all things I wish I was, all things I aspire to be as an artist and as a human being.

VC - If you had to run quickly out of the house as it was on fire would you (with everyone else from your house being safe)?
a) pick up the camera to ensure you had photos of a burning building.
b) pick up your guitar to play a concert for the firemen and the neighbors
c) pick up the timetable for the next Melbourne - Sydney train to make sure you didn't miss a good photo opportunity
d) all of the above.

PLV - LOL!! Without a doubt the answer is D!! Naturally I couldn't help myself but to take some piccies of the event... and yes, if there is a Guitar in my hands I'm going to start singing and probably scare the firemen away (which would be bad because of the fire!!) and yep, wherever a good photo opportunity is, I'll go!

Monday, March 8, 2010

A calendar for life and other news

In order of importance of news I have the great pleasure that I am the new illustrator for Bananafish Magazine as well as having the fun of designing their new masthead. After seeing advertisement for an illustrator for there site and upcoming publication I approached them and have happily had the header accepted.

and all this after a year of keeping my notebooks with me and sketching for all I am worth. But onto that news as well. I have happily completed two months of The 365 Notepads Calendar and am working my way, whistling, through March.

I have specifically kept the day and year off the calendar so that you don't have to buy a new one every year and am looking into the options of publishing the whole lot at the end of the year. Most likely it will be a  day to a page (with some method to cover leap years).

If you have any comments please leave them here or on the Facebook fan page as I'm always intrigued which images people like (even like them if that's all you want to do). It is also posted on the

Monday, February 8, 2010

My t-shirts of interest

So for all you people out there who may not know, Red Bubble recently updated the previews of t-shirts to make them more authentic to the final option and including a 'detailed view' behind our modelling pale figure

So, if you ever were wondering what my image looked like on a pale model you can get a good idea now (but seriously, these new previews are really, really really cool.)


Hmmm, I think I need to go out and get some more designs up now.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

365 days of Sketches

My first project for the New Year, should last a whole year and revolves around a full calendar of sketches. For every six days of Black and white I'm also having a seventh colourful day.

Here are the first of the days: