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Jeremy Geddes May 9, 2011

Posted by leskanturek in Artists, Student Blog posts, Student Post, Surreal.
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Post by Taylor Grant

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Jeremy Geddes is a working illustrator in Melbourne, Australia.  Beginning his career as a video game artist and art director, Geddes made a name for himself in the world of comics, game art and graphic novels. Having studied painting in the 90’s, Jeremy became a master of oils and turned to a career as a full time painter in 2003. His paintings exhibit an amazing capacity for rendering,with rich tones, extreme detail and a carefully considered composition. In order to achieve such refined finishes, Geddes starts with a preliminary painting which allow him to work out the composition, color and tone before starting on the finish.  From there, the painting is drawn out using washes of color to prep the canvas.  Finally, the painting is completed and then an additional level of glazes is added to enhance the depth of colors and texture.

(above)  The Cafe, right- details

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A combination of conceptual planning and technical ability makes Geddes’ pieces incredibly compelling.  The extreme photorealism of his rendering creates scenes that are completely believable, despite the surrealist elements. This idea is exemplified in Heat Death which features an astronaut floating weightlessly in an urban setting. Though his gravity defying pose is impossible, the figure and setting are both recognizable and realistic. I think this juxtaposition heightens the surrealism because I read the scene as a photograph, making it disconcerting because I know it could not actually occur.

(above)  Heat Death

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The same eerie discontentment is seen in Cluster. but unlike other works by Geddes, this piece is not in a setting but instead uses the negative space to add to the surrealism. the figures are intertwined to create an uncomfortable cluster in the center of the page. Their limbs are entangled but the weight of the form is limp.  The discomfort of their pose is haunting, which is again heightened by the believability of the rendering .

(above) The Cluster

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Jeremy Geddes continues to illustrate graphic novels, commissioned paintings and his own personally conceptualized work. You can view more of his paintings at: www.jeremygeddesart.com


Illustrator Scott Campbell April 9, 2011

Posted by leskanturek in Artists, Student Blog posts, Student Post, Uncategorized.
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Post by Vania Wat

Scott Campbell graduated from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco with a BFA in illustration with a focus on comics and children’s illustration in 1992. He began his career at Lucas Learning as a concepts artist for children’s video games. Over the years, he has worked as Art Director for Double Fine productions, published numerous comics and children’s books, and exhibited at galleries. He is most known for his nostalgic watercolor paintings and scraggily drawing aesthetic.

(above) From Campbell’s book “Zombie in Love” by Kelly DiPucchio (2011)

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One of Campbell’s most recent endeavors is his GREAT SHOWDOWNS project in which he illustrates famous scenes in movies. He is very successful in choosing a scene in a movie and rendering it in his carefree , cute style while preserving key elements and spirit of the movie. It has received great popularity, as viewers often have fun guessing what movies are depicted.


(above) From Great Showdowns…Take a guess at what movies they are

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Scott Campbell has received an Honorable Mention (2009) and Silver Medal (2005) for Dear Ship’s Log and Igloo Head and Tree Head, respectively. He has also received an Ignatz nomination for Best New Talent as well as numerous art direction awards for Psychonauts, a children’s computer game by Double Fine Productions.

(above) Paper Boy 1884

More of Scotts work can be seen at http://www.pyramidcar.com/ and Scott will be at MoCCA this weekend.

Jerry Marks Class Visit-IN 3-D! March 3, 2011

Posted by leskanturek in 3-D work, Anaglyph 3-D, Artists, Guest Visits, Subway/MTA Proposal, Visually Cool & Relevant.
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On his website, Jerry Marks is described as an “artist working along the border were art and science join…”   which is a good description of what you see when you enter his studio.  Part art studio, part laboratory of perception with maybe a little mad scientist thrown in (maybe a lot)  Jerry has been exploring the atistic applications of 3-D for a number of years. It’s really his passion and it comes through when he shows stereo images from the 19th century or a contemporary 3-D image experiment. Jerry’s work can be seen in books, music videos for the Rolling Stones, The 28th St. subway station, The New York Hall of Science , and theatre sets to name a few of the many projects he’s worked on . He is a accomplished 3-D silk screen printmaker, a teacher for many, many years , musican and has 3-D-ified everything from Bulwinkle to views of Venus.

At Jerry’s  Feb. 14th class visit to our concepts class he presented some wonderful 3-D eye candy,  a  powerpoint show of anaglyph photography and comics by  
Kim Deitch (It’s 4D!
) Bob Sikoryak (The Lost Treasure of the 3D!) , and Micheal Kupperman (Hercules vs. Zeus)


space(above) a 3-D panel from comic book artist Kim Deitch’s “It’s 4-D”.  Adapted for 3-D projection by Jerry.

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(above) “The lost treasure of the 3D”  art by by Bob Sikoryak

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(above top) An early virtual reality construction of the  mural at the 28th st. subway .  (directly above) ” 7 waves 4 twenty eight” the mural is built into glass blocks in which the curvature of the glass inside the block forms cylindrical lenses. ” Marks plans to use the lenticular (lens-like) properties of the block along with the appropriate lights, projectors, lenses, filters, in the space behind the wall to create a 3-D illusion art display. The mural will appear to move as you ride into the station”.

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After the powerpoint presentation Jerry took some time to describe the process of creating an anaglyph image in photoshop. In the next week or two they’re be a follow up post with the finished 3-D images done by the class.

Stephanie Wunderlich-Class Visit November 28, 2010

Posted by leskanturek in Artists, Comics, Guest Visits, Handmade, Theatre.
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(above) Stephanie in class during her powerpoint presentation of her work.

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On Monday Nov. 8th German editorial illustrator Stephanie Wunderlich graciously came in to room 802 to speak, share her experiences,  and show some of her work to all four of the Soph. concepts classes.    Stephanie has clients both in the United States and Europe, which made for an interesting in-class discussion on the differences in art direction between the two.  Her illustration process involves  cutting and collaging paper and though Stephanie has worked all digitally at points in her career, the excitment of  traditional hand cut paper  is still the most attractive for her.

(above) The cover of  Spring #7   (right) a shot of Stephanie’s board in her studio.

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Stephanie is a regular contributor and collaborator for  Spring, a collective graphic magazine/comic published annually in Hamburg which  has contributions all by women. A few issues of this inspiring, 200 page. plus, illustrative, graphic experience  were passed around during Stephanie’s presentation.

(above) sing issues of Spring. below that is the June 08 issue of Spring /Alter Ego

(above) Stephanie holding a pop up book she designed and constructed to be used in the Play – Warum das Kind in der Polenta kocht (Why the child cooks in the Polenta) – for the theatre Schausspielhaus Hamburg.  Additional pop-up spreads are on the right.

Stephanie also discussed the process behind creating illustrations/props that were used in a play in Germany. Theater  there  is subsidized    by the government and Stephanie explained that this subsidy facilitated experimental theatre.

Danke für Ihren Besuch Stephanie! (Thank you for visiting)

Jon Vermilyea Spills His Guts: Class Visit October 4, 2010

Posted by leskanturek in Artists, Comics, Guest Visits, Narrative, Printmaking.
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Monday, Sept. 27th  Illustrator-self publisher-silk screener Jon Vermilyea came to class to show his work, talk about his influences, his process and to offer advice.  Our class was joined by Peter Hamlin’s concepts class and Veronica Lawlor’s drawing in motion class along with other visitors, so  a good crowd were present.  Jon brought a variety of his work and started right off with some tee shirt designs.

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A few  books Jon worked on were passed around and Jon spoke about connections he made in school and how that lead to self publishing. Jon attended SVA for cartooning. He also talked about the importance of school as a place to experiment and try different ways of working without the fear of failure.  Embracing opportunity seemed to be a theme of Jon’s presentation.

The fact that he self-published, created an animation music video  for Animal Collective (http://vimeo.com/2616231) silkscreened prints and has a tee shirt line among more traditional work like comics is fairly signifigant and one of the reasons I asked Jon to stop by.  Jon generates his own projects and I think does so with a lot of integrity .

(above) Jon walks us through his Venom cover redo.

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(above) The Animal Collective box set illustrated by Jon designed by Rob Carmichael

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(above) Jon explaining color choices on the Mothman screenprint for the Giant Robot (San Francisco) show One Hundred Beasts that ran for the book Beasts! Book 2 published by Fantagraphics.

Thanks again for stopping by Jon it was great.  Here is a link to Jon’s site www.jonvermilyea.com/

Jon Vermilyea Class Visit September 22, 2010

Posted by leskanturek in Artists, Comics, Guest Visits, Visually Cool & Relevant.
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Here is a link to Jon’s web site to see more of his work-   http://www.jonvermilyea.com/

Inkstuds: The Radio Show about Comics December 31, 2009

Posted by leskanturek in Art History, Artists, Comics, Graphic Novels, Visual Narrative, Visually Cool & Relevant.
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Despite the porn sounding name if you go to the Inkstuds site you will not find pictures of Jack Kirby giving you the full monty.  What you will find is a radio show out of Vancouver hosted by Robin McConnell thoughtfully discussing the art, creators, the industry, inspiration, history  and influence of comics.

McConnell’s show which has been “on the air” for the past 4 years offers an incredible range of interviewees  including ;  Ralph Steadman, Seth, Tony Millionaire, Joe Sacco,  James Jean, Barron Storey, Rutu Modan, Scott McCloud, Art Spiegleman on Chris Ware, Rick Geary…the list goes on.   I highly recommend  tuning in to the show and hearing the intelligent discussion that takes place.

Manny Vega/Un Artista Con Alma January 13, 2009

Posted by leskanturek in Artists, Guest Visits, Public art.
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As you step off the train at 110th Street and Lexington in the NYC subway, you find yourself face to face with the art of Manny Vega. four panels, each approximately four feet high depicting scenes of life in the barrio lovingly, painstakingly crafted in mosaics. Un Sabado en la Ciento Diez (A Saturday on 110th Street). Manny took some time out to stop by class this last spring semester to talk about his work, and the process of creating art for the subway and the public. Manny is a self taught craftsman but also an obvious sponge for any knowledge of his craft. In terms of the 110th st. commission I was struck by the relatively short time frame it took him to accomplish such a laborious process. Months versus what I assumed would be a minimum 2 year process with execution and installation.

img_24(Above) 110th street station (6 train) 2 of 4 mosaics , Un Sabado en la Ciento Diez (A Saturday on 110th Street)

A characteristic of Manny that comes out when he speaks and that is also evident in all his meticulously crafted work is Corazón, passion, and a commitment to truly public art. Manny spoke about, what he felt was was his responsibility to represent the community that his work was appearing in. Manny spoke about working on the Portrait of Julia de Burgos mosaic in a storefront and having people in the community stop in and take part in placing tiles. The mural was completed in Oct. 2006

juliadeburgos_01(Above) Portrait of Julia de Burgos. East 106 Street between Lexington and Third Ave. Julia de Burgos was a Puerto Rican poet and civil rights activist who died at 39 in 1953.

(left) Mosaic El Rey Del Pollo at El Malecon Restaurant

Photos by Librado Romero of Manny and his work and audio of Manny speaking about his mosaics and philosophy.

(please note. this is an older post spring 2008 which was reposted – thanks Les)

Mammal Invades like Mongol Hoard December 10, 2008

Posted by leskanturek in Artists, Guest Visits, Visually Cool & Relevant.
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Mammal is a self published “pictorial dispatch” that allows it’s founders and contributors to “…produce illustrations, comics and visual editorials that interpret, explore, assault, confront, or straight up disrespect a singular chosen idea. The first issue was about newness, the second , and current issue’s theme was machismo. On Monday November 17th, some of the men from Mammal Magazine (Benjamin Marra , Jim Cooke, Matt Dorfman, Tom Forget, and Dan Meth) converged on room 811 to show their work, talk about art, self publishing, viking destroyers, careers, mistakes, successes, Tom Cruise… really everything and anything.

Missing was sixth mammal founder Devin Clark. One of Devin’s shows was green lit for a pilot and he was dealing with “all the craziness of actually making it”. Contributors Eric Eley and Chris Hosmer reside out of the NYC area were also missed.

devin(Top) Two of Devin’s Mammal contributions ( left) tEveryday Hairstyles for the Modern Lady, (right) Devin went around the New York Comic con asking attendees to identify as either “Tough” or “Not Tough” and taking their photo. (Lou Ferrigno pictured

I was hoping that along with students seeing a lot of fantastic work, our class would also get a glimpse at the inner workings and group dynamics of self publishing Mammal. I was fortunate to be the fly on the wall during discussions the group had about cover choices and content. It was interesting to see the shift take place from a group of contributors into a group of publishers. This meant in one case being responsible for content that might offend or be construed as racist. It also meant reconciling each persons view of what Mammal is. All this heated discussion went on in a very supportive, articulate atmosphere. Something that really impressed me and seemed to be worthy of holding up as an example.

Jim, Tom, Dan, Matt, Devin and Ben met while attending Syracuse University and become inspired by each others work. All of them have held down various jobs in the arts along with illustrating, including web design, art directing, designing, and animating.

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(Top) from left to right: Jim Cooke, Dan Meth, Matt Dorfman, Tom Forget and Benjamin Marra discuss the best way to corrupt young minds while Ben passes around some awesome sketchbooks.

A number of issues were touched upon during the visit. Holding down a number of careers, Illustrator/Designer/animator as entrepreneur, work ethics, and creating work for yourself first and foremost.

A large percentage of an illustrators income, now stems from self generated projects and entrepreneurial ventures versus a model of supporting yourself from commissioned work exclusively . While there were always illustrators and designers that promoted themselves by developing their own projects, today , these self generated projects go beyond promo pieces. Work is sold through their web sites , toys, stock art, fashion accessories and self published books to name a few.

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(Top) Ali Stackpole looking through one of Ben Marra’s sketchbooks. right is Ben’s Zombie Traci Lords. Ben was selected/identified as a Young Gun by the Art directors club. His work has appeared in American illustration, 3 X 3, the Society of Illustrators, and  the Society of Publication Designers.

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(Top left) a portrait of Pat O’Malley for Cleveland Magazine (right)The Curtsy 18×24 poster, silkscreen poster. Both by Matt Dorfman, whose clients include the New York Times, Penguin books, New York magazine, Time, Wired,and Mother Jones. Matt is also the voice of cougar from the Meth Minutes.

jim-matt1(Top) Matt Dorfman (Left) and Jim Cooke

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(Top- left to right) by Jim Cooke, Machismo Tom Cruise, Jerry Bruckheimer for Esquire, God save the Fan for Harper Collins Publishing. Jim has done work for for FS & G, Harper Collins, Scholastic publishing . and t Black table.com.

tomsolo(Top) Tom Forget explaining how 1950’s true crime pin-up mags have influenced/corrupted him. Tom is also an author, designer and music reviewer for BUST magazine

(Below) Two paintings by Tom (left) Bionic Commando for I AM 8-BIT Gallery (right) Dolly Parton for the DOLLYPOP show at the World of Wonder storefront gallery in Hollywood

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Capping off the class was an amazingly funny reel shown by animator Dan Meth , creator of the online animation series the Meth Minute”, and Nite –fite. This September Dan was a panelist at the Ottawa Animation Festival, as well as the winner of the the Frederator Vanguard award. If you watch many of Dan’s Meth minutes (and I suggest you do) you’ll recognize the voices of most of the Mammal guys. Everything and anything becomes animation material in the hands of Dan, stuffed animals, watermelons, body parts, as well as traditional drawing. Meth minutes can also be viewed on youtube.

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(Top) Three stills from Dan’s Meth Minute39 “# 2 Sex Machine“. (Bottom) Devin Clark and Tom Forget… and the Meth Minute characters they lent their voices to September 6, 2007 at Frederator Studios

Mammal is approaching it’s third issue along with independent projects on the horizon for a number of the Mammals, I look forward to seeing how the magazine/collective changes and evolves.

Gretchen Van Lente from Drama of Works Visits October 16, 2008

Posted by leskanturek in 3-D work, Artists, Class Topics, Guest Visits, Narrative, Puppets, Visually Cool & Relevant.
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Monday October 13th saw the class not only play host to a lot of Frankenstein puppets or is it a pride of puppets? A clutch? (see the post: Assignment of Frankenstein! for pics of student’s puppets) we also were graced with a visit from Drama of Works (DOW) Artistic Director, and one of it’s founders, Gretchen Van Lente.

Gretchen’s background started with a BFA in illustration, and a BA in Liberal Arts with a concentration in theatre. Gretchen showed an interest early on in mixed media often utilizing both 2-D and 3-D elements in her work.

A visit from Gretchen is a performance in itself as she animatedly speaks about her work while interjecting her talk with demonstrations of puppetry. Gretchen’s artistic passion was inspiring as she presented a

(Above) Scenes from DOW productions of (left) Doubting Dorothy, (Middle) curiouser & curiouser, (Right) Sleepy Hollow

wonderful powerpoint slide show of productions DOW has staged such as; Doubting Dorothy (a version of the Wizard of OZ story), Doctor Faustus, The Ballad of Phineas P. Gage, Titus, The Sid and Nancy Punch and Judy Show, Curiouser & Curiouser (Alice in Wonderland), and Puppet Kafka among others. Gretchen and DOW have maintained an international presence traveling to Puppetry Festivals from Finland to Bali and

(Above) Gretchen demo-ing the bug used in Puppet Kafka which was created out of an overturned basket.

points in between. While traveling Gretchen has had a chance to view a number of different forms and traditions of puppetry. DOW, and Gretchen, favor a “McGyver-esque” approach to narratives and puppets.

(Above) Gretchen holding up a mirror. The image on the mirror (here a hand), causes an ethereal, distorted version of the drawing to appear on objects the reflected light falls on.

Any object that can be manipulated in some way can be used to further a narrative according to Gretchen, so DOW productions tend to utilize traditional puppetry along with the experimental all in the same production.

Puppetry is at a natural intersection between 2-D and 3-D illustration, animation, graphic narratives, in short all the elements that are seen in the new venues that have opened up for illustration in the last few years. View DOW’s collaboration with GH avisualagency on a shadow film for NOKIA which plays on a giant screen at Heathrow airport in London. Also take a look at Dave McKean’s work. McKean was aware very earlier on of this intersection as evidenced not only by the mixture of traditional media and 3-D in his Sandman covers but in his graphic novel The Tragical Comedy or Comical Tragedy of Mr. Punch by Vertigo. His collaborative film with Neil Gaiman, Mirror Mask was a natural progression of the melding of all these disciplines.

Puppetry, with it’s rich history of traditional craft and experimentation is another branch of a tree also occupied by illustration. Like illustration puppetry has a background of drawing inspiration from literature. Both disciplines utilize some of the same skill sets because they share common goals. I’m hoping that Gretchen’s visit not only inspires potential puppet creators but also influences and expands students notions of the possibilities of illustration.

Thanks for speaking in class Gretchen!