Friday, December 17, 2010

The Year That Was, Pt. 2

So, after reflecting on that list I found, and being disappointed by not doing anything on it, I got to thinking about those things that I DID accomplish in 2010.

1. By years end, I will have done 371 sketch cards for the Topps Star Wars series.

I have been wanting to do sketch cards professionally for a while, and the opportunity finally arose this year thanks to my buddy Dustin Foust. I've seen many an artist pay their dues by trudging through the sketch card gigs, and now I can count myself among them.

2. I no longer work under the heel of oppression.

Without naming names, because we all know they're watching us, I now view April 28th as one of the best days of the year. At the time, I was angry and scared, but, just like everyone said, it became such a blessing. For 3 years I thanklessly worked for an overbearing tyrant in a tie, and the eight months since have proven to me that I can make it on my own. I would still LOVE to have the security of a "full time" job, but my Illustration/Animation business is chugging along quite nicely.

3. I have established long term clients.

I have begun relationships with some great people during this endeavor, and a few of them have become long term clients that know they can turn to me for fast, reliable, service. They're the kind of clients you always are happy to do work for, and never question your ability. I look forward to working with them more, and finding some more clients I can build great relationships with.

4. I have created the look for two video games.

Not only can I now mark down two Nintendo Wii titles under my belt of "hey, I worked on those", but I can also say that I have created the look for two other games.

5. I am an Art Director.

Ok, Assistant Art Director, but still... Whenever I went on interviews prior to being let go from the least creative place on earth, I would always tell the interviewer that I was ready to step into a lead position, and I was, and still am. After working for my current company where I do my main work for three weeks, they offered me a promotion, and a significant bump up in pay, and a new title. I am super excited that I get to shape this game in conjunction with the people in charge.

6. I was asked to do a guest strip for an established webcomic.

Couple months back I got a surprising email from David Reddick asking me if I would want to do a guest strip for his Legend of Bill webcomic. Of course!! David is an awesome guy, and it really got me itching to do the comic strip thing again.

7. People walk around wearing my art on their shirts.

And it's not just people I know. I had the pleasure of both designing the look of an entire line of shirts, but also one of my gigs allowed for a shirt to be made featuring the art I did for an app. Haven't seen any "out in the wild" but can't wait to see my art out there.

8. I have representation.

I have an art rep. I've wanted one, and hopefully it will become my way to break into gallery showings and the like.

These things are all wonderful things that have happened this past year, and I look forward to more surprises like these in 2011.

Stay tuned early next week for part three, where I outline my goals for next year!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Year That Was, Pt. 1

While sifting through boxes, I came across my "2010 Goals" list stuffed into a box full of important papers and other junk. Sadly, not one of those goals were met. Now, I made this list around this time last year, and most of them still apply, but as I reflect back on the year that was 2010, I accomplished a LOT of other goals I had set for myself prior.

My 2010 Goals:

1. Illustrate 3 Children's Books.

Not only did I not illustrate 3 children's books, but I didn't even illustrate one. I had my first book lined up and ready to go when the author decided to use someone closer to them that they have known for a while. I totally understand the thinking behind this, but I was pretty disappointed to lose out on this one. I do have a book that is written and ready to be done, the trick lies in getting the time to do it, as it doesn't pay upfront. I also have 3 more to write myself, the ideas are there, again, just not the time. Hopefully, 2011 will bring either the time or the opportunity to allow me at least one book.

2. Finish at least 1 issue of a comic book.

Again, time was my enemy on this one. I did get the time to iron out a definitive story for one of my properties, which excites me, but the fact that I didn't get to finish even a 5 page story makes me sad.

3. Complete an animated short.

This one looked like it was going to happen as well, then April rolled around and I got laid off. My priorities quickly changed from being able to do things in my spare time to having to do things that PAY in all the time I have.

4. Have Illustrations published in a magazine.

Ok, this one I can live with, due to a few things that DID happen, and some things that ARE GOING to happen in 2011.

5. Learn to paint.

I DID try this one. I also DID complete one painting this year for a friend...on the side of a giant trash can. I was actually pretty happy with the result, seeing as how I'm not a good painter to begin with.

6. Design a toy.

Another one I thought was going to happen, but then the client went with another designer (again!). To the guys at Levlr, you KNOW you want the badger to be a toy, you just know it (make it happen, lol).

7. Lose 50 pounds.

Yeah, it's ALWAYS on my list. And I got half way there...then began to eat crap again, and gained most of it back. Ah...the never ending battle.

That's the list. So close with some of them, not so much with others. However, a lot of things DID happen in 2010, stay tuned later in the week to see part 2. Thanks for reading!