... I was born in Boston, and before I was conscious to my surroundings, I was suburbanized for eighteen comfortable years in Andover, Massachusetts. My love and propensity for math, science and the making of art sent me off to college at Rice University in Houston where I earned a dual degree in architecture and fine art, and in the process, became an avid comics and fantasy art collector. For a dozen years I practiced architecture while my desire to make art was subverted into art collecting. As a collector, I tracked down Rick Berry and Phil Hale and bought two collaborative paintings from them, both of which are on the jacket of their book Double Memory
. I hit it off with Rick, with whom I began late night collaborative painting over beer and Irish whiskey. Seduced by the charm and glamour of image making, I derailed my salaried full time day job as an award-winning architect, to have more fun and feed my creative spirit by making images. You can see my printed work in Workbook, The Directory of Illustration, SPECTRUM: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art, Expose, and various art book collections I'll include in the Press section of the site. I'm an annual exhibitor at San Diego Comicon
- Booth 4600, at Illuxcon
, and I often exhibit at the annual Boskone Convention.
I live and work in my studio in Boston with my wife and son. We love the urban life and walk everywhere.
About My Influences
... I share a "virtual studio," via email, with fourteen awesome illustrators and an art director, where we critique each others' ongoing projects. This is an amazing way to keep it fresh, and grow, in a profession where most of us are home alone. I owe a great debt to my studiomates. Currently our roster includes: Greg Manchess, Dan Dos Santos, Lars Grant West, Stephan Martiniere, Rebecca Guay, Todd Lockwood, Julie Bell, Bruce Jensen, Cyril Van Der Haegen, Donato Giancola, Sam Burley, Doug Gregory, Jon Foster, Scott Fischer and Irene Gallo.
Influential (and intimidating) artists beyond my studiomates include Rick Berry, Phil Hale, Ash Woods, Chris Moeller, Kent Williams, John Muth, Dave McKean, and Robert McGinnis. I love the art of Caravaggio, Egon Schiele, John Singer Sargent, Robert Graham and Odd Nerdrum. On a recent trip to Paris, I found Philippe de Champaigne
at the Louvre, and he rocked my world. I wonder why I'd never heard of him before. Here's some history
I’m far more influenced by modern day sci-fi film noir than by vintage genre illustrations. Aliens, Bladerunner, The Matrix, The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Edward Scissorhands and the Star Wars films, have all been incredibly influential. I continue to be inspired by new films, and by the art of movie VFX.
About My Images
... I almost always kick off a new piece from the ground up with photo-collage in the computer using Adobe Photoshop. I am an OCD level collector of images -an Image Junkie- and am constantly shooting photos of anything that I might use in my images. Pattern recognition = paradigm. Boston is an incredible resource for both "found" photo ops, or if I need to go shoot something specifically. My latest love is the Canon 5D mark III. I use Model Mayhem
to find models, and will shoot for specific projects, or for collaborations that often turn in to images that grow from the spontaneity of a shoot. I find that the best laid plans are often supplanted by better ideas that intervene along the way. In addition, I own about 110,000 royalty free stock images that I keep in a searchable Extensis Portfolio catalogue.
I'll start an image with a strong photo or two chosen for the assignment brief, or just because they inspire me. Images are composed by montaging 2 to 100 photos (usually small parts of photos) into a singe image. I'll add parts and pieces in a Frankensteinian flurry, and distort, relight, repaint and overlay photos. I'll rework figures and do sketches inside and outside the computer to reconcile anatomy and composition. Once my collage begins to gel on screen, I'll shoot or search specific elements, and splice them in over roughly sketched areas, or I'll sometimes add traditional media (paint and pencil drawings) imported digitally. I've also been building 3D images in Google Sketchup, and exporting jpegs to incorporate into images. I can take this process all the way to a finish, or I can bring this up to an "underpainting" level of 85% or 90% complete, and then print it on archival media, and finish it in oil paint. This allows me to produce a painterly finish on a piece composed in photographic collage. Depending on my client's needs, I can produce a range of stylistic finishes from photographic to loose painterly. If time is tight, or if lots of changes are anticipated, I will use Corel Painter to achieve a painterly finish on an entirely digital piece.
Check out the film clip about me from the Roadhouse Films "Visions from the Edge"
documentary to see an overview of my process.
Check the Progressions section of the site for process examples and demos.
About My Roots
... Occasionally I'll get a chance to return to my traditional fine art techniques. In the "unplugged" portion of the site, there are several traditional oil paintings on a variety of substrates. Often I'll start with a monochrome oil "wash drawing," brushed, wiped and fingerpainted onto a base layer of acrylic gloss medium over gesso. I'll use oil crayons, or a narrow brush, to sketch on the initial surface and into the paint for line definition. Opaque whites, or full colors can then be added into the wet paint for full wet-on-wet (alla prima) painting, or the surface can dry down, be barrier-coated with Liquin and then be opaque painted or glazed with color. This is all an inherently lovely, delicious, toxic and deadly process, but can be ultimately rationalized by comparing it to other forms of even more deadly nihilism.
Check out the Press section of the site for Articles and Interviews.
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