Saturday, December 31, 2011

Striking Bearded Man

I have an amazing cabinet card that I've been trying to do justice to in graphite, but I just can't seem to do it. Inspired by the style in yesterday's post I tried to draw this guy the same way. I think I came close in the second one, but it's still too realistic, and a tad too cartoony, which I realize are conflicting statements.

Attempt #1

Attempt #2

I'm glad that I made it up to 144 posts this year, as the square root of 144 is 12 and there are 12 months in the year. There's a quiet harmony to that that I find pleasing. Anyhow, hope everyone has a good new year's eve tonight!

Friday, December 30, 2011

A Doodle Reworked

I liked the Karaoke Napkin Doodle I did the other week of my friend Jesse, and I wanted to rework it into a real drawing. I'm even happier with results and want to explore doing more portraits in this style.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tom at Tom's House

Messing around with blind contour portraits. Tom at Tom's house on craft night.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Scruffy the Wild Cat

Well I'm at it again. A long time ago, in a season far far away, Stephanie's Mom hired me to draw portraits of three of her cats. I've finally made good on one of those portraits and the others should be close behind.

This is "Scruffy". He's an outdoor cat with a bit of a wild side, so I turned him into a Mountain Man. I also recommend doing a google search for "mountain man" because it yields some interesting results. If only we could get all of those guys in a room together. It might be too much beard and animal pelts for us to handle.

I can never resist the urge to convert my portraits into a sepia tone.

And the lovely model.

You can see some of my previous cat portraits here, here, here, and here.

Friday, December 23, 2011


Stephanie bought this dog skull at a yard sale over the summer and now it sits in our living room. Bones are always great still life subjects. They have so many drops and shadows.

Happy 4th night of Hanukkah tonight!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Karaoke Napkin Doodle

At the last karaoke night I doodled this blind countour of Jesse. I like the way it came out.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Another Painting of a Fox

Nothing like a birthday to get the creative juices flowing. Also, animal calenders provide great reference photos.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Interpretive Album cover

For Stephanie's birthday, and in honor of the interpretive dance party she's having for it, I bought her this album as a gift. HOWEVER, I was not able to find it in any of the stores around town and had to purchase it online. I wanted to give her a present on her birthday so I drew up a mock cover and put it on a random album we had and wrapped it up. Kind of the same thing, right?

Luckily the album came in the mail the day after her birthday.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

New Portrait 1904

Here's a portrait I've been working on on and off for a few weeks now. I photoshopped it into a vintage cabinet card frame to make it look a bit more official.

I'm really happy with the way it came out, but I've gotta start making bigger work and not just work in my sketch book all the time. Hopefully some bigger work will be hitting the blog soon.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Israel Schraer

While in San Diego over the holidays I came upon this photo of my great grandfather, Israel Schraer,. In a way it was like seeing him for the first time. This man was my namesake, though I have no memory of him. My parents wanted to name me after him, but as he was still living, and in the Jewish tradition you don't name anyone after a living relative, they chose to use his first initial when choosing my name.

I have no memory of him, he died when I was very young and even then lived across the country, but I also have no image of him. If I think of him no picture comes to mind, though I must have seen a picture of him at some point. This photograph is the only memory I have.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Friday, December 2, 2011

Paging Mr. Herman

I'm starting a new blog everyone and I want YOU to be a part of it! It's called Project P.W. and if you want more information you should check it out.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Scratchboard Thriller

Looks like the rainy day that I prophesied back in August finally came, which means I got around to finishing my scratchboard portrait of Michael Jackson. I find it hard to let any project go unfinished and this one was particularly labor intensive. I wish I had had time to finish it back in June because I'm much more pleased with it than the graphite version I ended up putting into that show. I don't think I'll feel like experimenting with this particular medium for a while now.

This sucker IS for sale, for those of you who are trying to get a head start on your holiday shopping. Let me know in the comment section if you're interested and we can talk prices.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Kite Flying Society

This is from a picture of my Dad and I that I thought would look good as an art piece. For some reason I came out looking like a zombie though.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Crosshatched Oldies

Here are a few more sketches from sketchbooks past. The top one is my attempt at comic book style illustration and the bottom is an old sneak a sketch from the MUNI in San Francisco. New sketches coming SOON.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Humble Insect Collection of Charles R. Mammoth

My friend Stacie at Notes From Below invited me to contribute a piece for a coloring book she's putting together. I decided to redraw and expand upon an older sketch for it and I'm pretty happy with the results. I'll let you kmnow when the whole coloring book is assembled. Until then feel free to print this guy up and color him in. Send a scan of the finished masterpiece to and I'll put it up for all to see!

Monday, November 14, 2011


I've been mining for character ideas lately and this is the hippest I could come up with. What do you think, is it a golden nugget or am I way out west with this one?

Saturday, November 12, 2011

How to Frame a Picture for a Present

Funny story. I was looking up videos on youtube yesterday on how to frame an oil painting and came upon a treasure trove of instructional videos from independently owned retail frame shops. That's where I found this guy, in all his earnest and awkward glory. Within a few seconds into the video I knew I had to draw him.

Before the shading.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Chicken's Don't Clap! Show Flier!

Here's a rough draft and final version of a flier I recently did for a show in San Diego. My old pal Derek Emery (DJ Dirty Rock), author of music blog Chickens Don't Clap, put it together and it's probably going to be pretty awesome.

The keen eye will notice that I got the lineup order wrong in the rough draft. Quality control, people. Quality control.

Monday, October 31, 2011

The Deadly Phorusrhacos!

I 'm really excited about this new portrait. The Phorusrhacos was a giant flightless predatory bird from the Miocene era, characterized by her massive pointed beak. Although this one may seem a harmless, if you look closely you can see a twinge of mayhem lurking behind her bespectacled eyes.

Happy Halloween everyone!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Absurd

Hope everyone is having a good Halloween weekend. Here's another one from the vaults that I found to be fitting. What if I only drew people in silhouettes?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Self Portrait as Walrus vs. Self Portrait as Rhinocerous

Here are a few more from an old sketchbook. The assignment was to do a self portrait as an animal and these were my preliminary sketches.

I eventually settled on the walrus for the final piece pictured below.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Fanciful Toad and Quail.

So like I said the other day, I stumbled upon some old sketch books and thought I would post a few of the images here. Ones that I think could inspire future work. Here are a few that I did around 3 years ago.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Macho Halloween

By popular vote my new Halloween pumpkin tribute issssssssss- MACHO MAN RANDY SAVAGE!

Happy Halloween everybody!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Mammoth Hands

This mammoth has the horrifying disfigurement of having human hands!

Sorry for the break in posting, but I've been hard at work on some more in depth drawings than usual as well pondering the meaning of my own existence. As you can see, it's been rough! I recently looked through some old sketch books from 4-5 years ago and rediscovered some stuff that I think it pretty neat so I'll be posting some of those drawings here to fill in the gaps.

Has everyone settled on a Halloween costume yet? If not you better get crackin'. Hopefully tomorrow I'll have a new carved pumpkin tribute to post on here. It's going to be quite savage.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Great Bill Murray

He's always been one of my favorite guys, so I thought I'd take a stab at a portrait. It was also good watercolor practice!

Saturday, October 15, 2011


This is the drawing that I spent the majority of the session on last Sunday. Aside from the head being way to big for the body I think it was a successful study. Though I think I prefer the looser ones to this approach.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


I had about ten minutes left at the end of the figure drawing session so I decided to zero in on the foot and see what happens. Aside from hands and ears, feet are probably the weirdest part of our bodies.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Sunday Painter

I made it to another figure drawing session at PNCA this past Sunday. It was my first time there in a while. On sundays it's just one pose for three hours so it really gives you time to figure a few things out. This one I did pretty quickly though.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Scuffz reads

On Memorial Day it was hot, we went to the river, and we had a BBQ with friends. I also drew this picture!

Well summer is over, but here's to apple cider, fireplaces, scrabble, winter squash, and all things autumn.

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Boys

When I was in San Diego last I "borrowed" this photograph from my Dad of him and his three brothers when they were kids. It was too classic for me to not recreate. You can really see their individual personalities shining through.

(My Dad is the youngest)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

In Tandem

This drawing was for my friend's editing and web design company, Tandem Web and Reels. Check em out on that one social networking site too.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Garfield the Destroyer

In one of the special features of the Garfield: The Movie dvd Jim Davis teaches you how to draw the different incarnations of Garfield. Though I still think it was weird that he drew him on a pile of skulls, but oh well. Go figure, right?

I wish Garfield forever looked like this. He was so awesome in his original incarnation. I'm gonna start a fan strip where Garfield looks like this instead. Anybody want to write them?

Monday, October 3, 2011

Friday, September 30, 2011