Oh By Golly, Have a Holly Jolly Halloween This Year

Modern Halloween: -Trick or Treat in the day time! -Trick or Treat on a weekend around Halloween. (Luckily Halloween actually falls on a Saturday this year). -Trick or Treat in the mall? -Drunk adults with "Sexy - fill in the blank" costumes.

Not quite the same as when I was a kid, but we will still have fun. Halloween is also my boy's birthday. He turns one tomorrow. We're having family over for a party and trick or treating. I think every major Wizard of Oz character will be represented. Then maybe a good horror flick. I'm thinking Frankenstein or The Wolfman.

Also, a shout out to Matt, Kathe, Dale, Jordan, Gina, and Marq. I appreciate your support and comments with my art life. Trying to make some kind of career out of artwork is a hard transition. In the years leading to success, it's nice to know that my artwork is at least being seen. Miss you guys.


Would You Hire this Man?

Here are some rough business card layouts I've been working on. I'm thinking of printing up one that is kind of whimsical and kid oriented and one that's a little more serious and business-like. Any thoughts?


The Forgotten Wildlife: Sunflapper

Sunflappers have large wing-like ears on the side of their heads which they use for "flopping". Flopping can be thought of as either a really impressive hop or a really pathetic attempt to fly. Thousands of sunflappers can be seen flopping during the long, hot summer afternoons. This is how they find each other through the deep and thick grasses of the rolling plains where they live.

As they flop, their long rubberband-like necks stretch and snap between their bodies and heads. A sunflapper landing is not a graceful sight. The body usually lands first causing the neck to snap the head to the ground. The sunflapper drags it's head and droopy ear flaps along the ground until it's next flop.

I used the same sketch to experiment with some different color options and style:


Princesses Everywhere

My Daughter likes Disney princesses. I'll take that over Bratz any day. Actually, I think I'm more excited about the upcoming The Princess and the Frog than she is. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h6DmEgtibOg
I made this canopy for her play set.

First, I found pictures of all the princesses and combined them into a composition that would fit the canopy. Then I traced the composition so I would have crisp closed lines. Scanned it in and vectorized it. Digitally filled in color and found matching vinyls. Cut the vinyl (over 15 colors) and applied each as a layer on the canopy. It turned out pretty cool, but it seemed to take forever!


Leave(s). Go. Goodbye.

Please, Please, Please, can we have a mild winter? I am not a shovel and blower fan.


Back and Forth

I painted a bunch of abstracts with this back and forth theme. These are all acrylic on canvas. The back and forth theme carried over into some of my other paintings. You can see it in the background of this 4' x 5' painting that is hanging in our living room.


A Monster's Favorite Time of the Year

I love Halloween. Horror movies, monsters, and candy are a year round obsession for me. This is the time of year when these things are everywhere. Horror Geek Fun!

Here are some scenes or trailers from five of my favorite horror movies.

Jacob's Ladder: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I0kW6xuxtPU
Creature from the Black Lagoon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lM1o1xe5FGE


Zombie Has The Blues

Why? Because it is Monday.

I started working on Cow 158 this weekend, but I won't have time to finish it before it's due date. I will finish it, though. It's a pretty cool start.

The time I have for working on art will mostly be devoted to an upcoming show for one of my bands. I'm working on gig posters / flyers and t-shirts. We haven't played together in a while, but practice has been good. We are thinking of recording the show to release as a live disc. (which could be another fun packaging project.) We'll see how it goes.


19 Cups!

Coffee is an artist's best friend. Long and strange hours are a necessity, especially for an artist with a full-time job:( who comes home to a full-time family:). . .

I was up late last night setting up a portfolio website. It is basic but I think it looks pretty sharp. I set it up through a premium membership at DeviantArt, which lets me use my own domain name (denverwagner.com) and opens up a bunch of other options on their site. After alot of research on setting up a website, this was by far the best value for me. It is new so I will be updating it over the next few weeks to get it right, but I think it's a nice start. Now I just have to figure out how to get clients there. ..
Any thoughts, comments , or advice will be appreciated. http://denverwagner.com/



"Please pull your pants up, Sir."
I am working on a portfolio website. I've done a lot of research on this over the last few months, and I think I found a way to make a nice site with a reasonable cost. Should be up by next week!



Dinosaurs rank pretty high on my list of cool things. No, I'm not 8.

I was flipping through some old sketchbooks from high school that my mom found at her house. There were dozens of dinosaur scenes that were pretty bad. I like these five, though. I think they represent a transitional time in my artwork. I was beginning to understand composition, lighting and shading, and narrative. I was starting to create things just because I wanted to see them.

I miss being able to sketch and doodle all day, which is how I spent my high school and college days. I think it's easier for some people to absorb information with the left side of their brain while their right side is engaged. Thankfully, some educators understand that. I still try to sketch when I can, but it was much easier when I was able to sit at a desk for 6 or 7 hours every day.


Go Ahead, Try to Make a Whole

Coming off a pretty unproductive art weekend. Side-job, sick family, yard work, and church obligations...Sheesh! Just thankful Sunday afternoon band practice was cancelled. Hopefully, I can get back on track this week but it's looking pretty full already. What I really want is a healthy family, I'll take everything else as it comes.

Here's a to-do wishlist for the week:
-set up website
-work on abstracts for possible display/show
-work on Forgotten Wildlife poster
-research and apply for next year's art fairs
-work on pieces for next year's art fairs

Here's a to-do reality list for the week:
-Make up time at work for lost hours due to sick family last week.
-Work on ongoing side job
-Meet with possible client, work on his project
-Meet with Bank / State Department of Revenue
-Yard work / House work/ Be dad (Not complaining here, but all parents know how time consuming children are.)
-Prep for incoming guests/sleepover
-Band Practice


Rabid Cosmic Mud Puppy Vs. The Inappropriate Frog

We just shot the moon. (Another Mr. Show prophecy comes true!) Did anyone think this thing through? Of course not! Now we have angered Pudmuppy, the rabid cosmic mud puppy. Our only hope is the Inappropriate Frog, who surely will turn his wrath on us even if he wins. Nice.


Okapi Craving M&Ms

Give me M&M's or I'll blow up your planet!

My wife has been calling our kids "Bumper" and "Bruiser" lately. Great names! Anyways, Bruiser is home sick today so Ma and Pa are each working half a day. I'm taking Bruiser into the doctor this afternoon. And then hopefully he'll take a long nap and I'll get an extra hour or so to work on the Forgotten Wildlife poster.

I think I'll start with the Crowned Quib.

Here are some old sketches. I'll need some good photo references as well. I'm thinking okapi.


The Big Creature Feature

I am starting a project that I've wanted to do for a long time. It's a Forgotten Wildlife character poster. I am going to create each creature separately so they can be used in various other projects. A simplified cartoon style will transfer easily between different programs, projects, and media. I will post my progress intermittently and show some techniques and processes along the way. This will take a while, but I hope you enjoy watching the poster fill in over the next few months. This is a work in progress, so any advice, observations, or comments along the way can help make this a stronger piece.

Ape Watch 2009