Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Crispy Creepies

Here's my illustration for the new "Cereal Killers" book for Von Kreep over at Kreepsville Industries.

I really wanted to do a lesser known cereal, so I based mine on a cereal called Crispy Critters circa 1966. I loved the layout of these boxes so much. I love how they really frame the character with text and cereal shapes...

Here's the sketch:

Here's the flat version (before photoshop textures):

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Hanna Barbera Doodles

Sorry for the lack of posts. I took a little break from painting to do some other projects. I'll announce more soon...

I was watching the Huckleberry Hound DVD the other day and just had to do a couple doodles. Does anyone even remeber these charcters or like them?

I love Huckleberry Hound, I think he's my favorite HB character...who's yours?


Sunday, March 19, 2006

Legend of Zelda

Well, here's my second series of paintings (three all together) I'm doing for this year's I Am 8-bit Show.

I picked Ledend of Zelda because this is actually the second game I ever got for the NES. Oh the harsh Pennsylvania winter of 1986 was warmed by searching a new world filled with little weird creatures lurking about bushes and tombstones.

The game was amazing, but another really cool thing were the illustrations from the manual. They looked like a Disney cartoon I have never seen! There was this little blond-haired kid )who looked like me) killing bats and searching though dungeons.

I wanted to try something new for this piece so I tried lots of rendering techniques and color comps:

I finally settled on this one:

The final "Antique Link" is (5.5. X 9") acrylic on spruce:

I was only going to do one painting but I really liked how Link turned out so I decided to do 4 small (5x5") paintings on partical board post ends. I drew the ideas on little post-its:

I scanned them in and tightened them up:

Here's the final paintings:

Would you buy paintings like these for 50 bucks?

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Thursday, March 16, 2006

Newest Marios

Here's some new Mario paintings I did for this year's I Am 8-Bit show. When thinking about the new pieces, I wanted to try to do ideas I didn't have a chance to touch on the first time around.

Here's a little known fact that Mario had a submarine from Mario Land for the Gameboy:

I always try to incorporate the frame into the color choices and sometimes the actual design. I'll have to track down a picture of the framed piece.

(This really isn't the best scan of this piece, sorry!)

Mario 3 Power ups---I know, I'm missing Kuribo's Shoe, but I'm saving that one...

This was actually my first painting entirely digital to paint, no physical rough...

Next post, Legend of Zelda paintings!

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Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Comments Welcomed

Sorry all, I'm still new to all this blogging and I have some kind of comment moderation set? No wonder nobody was commenting on anything! Well, you're free! You opinions high or low, left or right, all are welcomed!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

"Remixing the Magic"

Finally caught up to the present! Here's my new paintings I did for the "Remixing the Magic" show at Galley 1988 which was just taken down. I wanted to do a couple more, but I seemed to run out of time toward the end there...

When first asked to do paintings based on any Disney movie or character, I immediately went straight to one of my favorite artists who also happens to be one of the nine old men, Ward Kimball. He's my hero, not just because of his later more stylized cartoons, but mostly becausae he's an amazing animator. The more I study his scenes, I always discover countless subtle actions he layers into them. He was a genius, and will live on in his work...

This is a very self explainatory illustration of Mickey and Minnie's realationship, especailly in the Ub Iwerks cartoons... I wonder if Walt and Ub were having girl problems back then...

Friday, March 10, 2006

Commissioned Paintings

Here's two paintings I did for money! People pay for these?! I guess they do!

This is my version of a classic cartoon character for Barry Blumberg the previous President of Walt Disney Television Animation. I always wanted to do a painting of Micky with no black in it.

color comp


This is my version of a new cartoon character called El Tigre. This was for my new boss Dave Thomas. Dave's only request is that he wanted Tigre to be in an action pose. I think it's pretty action packed...


color comp


I'm open to commissioned pieces all the time, so if you're willing to pay for this, then I'll do my best to please!

Man, I wish there was some way to retain those colors from the comps. Any advise on how to acomplish this impossible task is much appreciated! Next post is Disney stuff, stay tuned!

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Other Video Game Paintings

Who said that Mario was the only videogame character worth painting?! Oh, that's right, I did. Regardless, I'm a giving person, and both of these paintings were Christmas gifts for my 2 good friends, Jon Gibson, and Tony Mora.

Don't ask me why, but Jon is a huge Burgertime fan! He has a Burgertime arcade cabinent in his apartment and everything! He can't seem to finish eating a whole hamburger in real life though...

Tony begged me to do a Donkey Kong painting for about 1 year before he gave up. Then, when he least expected it...hee hee

Tomorrow I'll post some of my commissioned pieces...

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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Super Mario World 2005

After my first mario paintings sold at the show, the curators asked me to do another peice for the closing party. For some reason I forgot about all the pain that went into the first 3 pieces and decided to do the "ultimate mario painting". I started to think of the best game to do. As luck would have it, I just played through "Super Mario World" for the SNES a couple of months before this. I was blown away by the sprites, the gameplay the environments, music and characters in that game, so the chioce was natural. I started with some reference-oh the wonders of the internets! Then drawing-- I couldn't stop, and before I knew it, I redesigned pretty much every character in the game!

That's good for the enemies but what about the stars?! Well, those are always the most fun:

Then once I was happy with some of those characters, I figured out how to fit 'em all in there!

Now color! The best part! The most fun! When I started referencing the colors of the game, I found out that Miyamoto/Nintendo actually had a real color script in the game! Wow! Even more genius! So I tried to incorporate that:

Yes, this is a color comp created in flash. I find it's the easiest way to resize/color/layer and export everything.
So, now the most dreadful part of the piece must commence...the painting! Here's some rare pics of the work in progress.

Well, after the second night, I finished the Background, and I hated it! I thought it looked terrible!
So, the next night I completely started over and repainted the entire background!
Then the characters...

Then finally, after 4 nights, the "ultimate mario painting" which turned into the "ultimate pain in the butt" was finished!

Here's some other doodles from the first Mario pieces:

Now that I'm all caught up on old paintings, time for some new ones!

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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Mario Paintings 2005

These are the my paintings from last years I Am 8-Bit art show at Gallery 1988. As you can obviously see, I was still painfully trying to learn how to paint. I'm glad I got a little better since then or these would have been the only Gabe Swarr paintings the world would have ever seen!

Why Mario you ask? Anyone that knows me knows that I like that puny plumber (just a little)...

I even got me one of these!

There is one more GIANT painting I did for the closing party of the show. I'll post that one soon enough!

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