Friday, May 30, 2008

Hard Looks

Who's that Pokemon???

It's Metapod!

I drew this ages ago (five years ago, in fact) for two kids at Comic-Con who were taking a sketchbook around and having artists draw random Pokemon. They sent me a scan of it, and here I am, a jillion years later, finally doing something with it.

A few years later I saw those kids again, but they weren't kids--they were young men, in college, and they were in a band. I'm old!

The end.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The arbour argument

My father is feeling old.
As I spent last weekend at his place, the sun was shining and we were both pottering about in his garden.
"The damn arbour is going for sure" he muttered as we walked around the house.

My heart nearly stopped. I love that arbour. It's what makes his garden sooo special. I remember playing inside it as a kid, having picnic inside it as a wannabe adult and snogging my ex fiancée inside it on our first visit to Sweden.

"I can't believe you're saying that" I stuttered highly upset and slowly turning into a stubborn teenager which sometimes happens when talking to my dad. "I love it! It's over a hundred years old! How can you be so stupid?" I screamed, pedagogically...

"I'm close to 70 years old" he answered matter-of-factly and rather pissed off. "The arbour needs cutting at least 3 times a year to stay nice, and it's really hard work as the branches are so thick".

My heart sank. My beloved arbour that my great grandfather planted. My father siezed the moment:

"let's make a deal" he suggested, " you look after it, cut it and so forth and I promise I won't remove it".

Yep, you've guessed it already I'm sure. I agreed... So it looks like I'll be travelling to Lapland 3 times a year to trim a god damn hedge. That's how it goes when you listen to your heart, I guess.

just one of those lists that they send you...

...And I couldn't help but fill it in:

10 favourites:

Colour: green

Food: something someone cooked me with love

Place: Easter Island in a tie with Jersey

Film: Kill Bill

Alcoholic drink: Beer (I’m such a sophisticated girl!)

Book: A star called Henry – Roddy Doyle

Sport: Dancing is the ONLY sport

Time of year: summer

Spare time activity: lying in my bath tub

Ice cream flavour: chololate

9 right-nows:

Mood: satisfied

Flavour: cinnamon tea

Clothes: PJs

Music: fab 80’s tunes on the radio

Nailvarnish: blue toenails

Time: 22.54

Surroudings: white and tranquil

Smells: a branch of honeysuckle I pinched from the garden and put on my table

8 firsts (very, very firsts!):

Best friend: Lina

Car: my beloved Mini Mayfair

Pets: our dog Pricken and cat Cocos

Piercing: earlobes when I was 16

Love: Martin, when we were 5 years old

Music: nursery rhymes, of course

Memory: my horse Julle sniffing my hair, for some strange reason

7 latest:

Cigarette: I did smoke 1908… But that IS a long time ago!

Food: a prawn salad and then shit loads of cashew nuts

Drink: Persian Earl Grey tea

Trip: into town today for some serious crazy shopping

Regret: Eating that bag of crisps yesterday

Phonecall: my brother Po

TV-show: Navy CIS

6 have-you-ever:

Dated your best friend? The one you date should be your best friend as well as lover…

Broken the law? who hasn’t?!

Gone skinnydipping? Yes, but I don’t like it

Been on TV? Yes, in several Swedish films

Kissed someone you don’t know? Hell yes! Wasn’t that what the teenage years was all about?

Lied about your age? All the time.

5 no thank yous:

Clothes: shoulder pads are a bad idea unless you stick them in your bra

Food: liver and kidney are just WRONG

Music: metal and hip hop-wanky-stuff

Drink: tequila

Personality trait: bullying/discrimination

4 things you can’t live without:





3 people:

You can tell everything: Lisa, Ann, Po

You like: are several more than 3

You don’t like: are several more than 3 too

2 choices:

Coffee or tea: tea

Sping or autumn: spring

1 trait you don't like in yourself:

My complete lack of self discipline...

Long Overdue Post: My Friends Are Talented

Those of you who read my blog regularly are well aware that I am a terrible procrastinator. Hopefully, you're also aware of the fact that I have talented friends. With both those things in mind, I've been meaning to mention a few things for several weeks (months)--

Sherri's most recent young adult novel was released not too long ago (in February), titled Hot, Sour, Salty, Sweet. Using a middle school graduation day as a backdrop, Hot, Sour, Salty, Sweet tells the story of a young girl struggling with her bi-racial heritage, and her transition into adulthood. Great reading for young adults, as the last days of school give way to the summer. And if you haven't already, please give Sherri's other books a look as well. Sherri's stories tend to deal with young women finding their way in life, and while the books are never "too girly" for a general audience, I particularly recommend them for girls and young women looking for role models who aren't vapid starlets.

Danielle has recently stocked her Etsy store with a series of elegantly hand-made greeting cards and bookmarks. Each piece is one-of-a-kind, and Danielle's prices are ridiculously affordable, so if you see something you like, buy it fast!

And, for the buccaneer in your life--Ren just added some charming Pirate Grrl greeting cards to the Paper Lotus Etsy store. I caught glimpses of this set in progress, and I'm stoked to finally see them available for purchase. Buy these so that Ren will make more!

GTA IV Lola Del Rio

If you don’t feel like you wasted enough time chasing non-existent Bigfoot, Leatherface and UFOs all over San Andreas, you have another chance with GTA IV. The new GTA game is out and so are the infamous GTA myths. This time the myth is a lot sexier, it’s hot and suggestive lollipop sucking girl called Lola. Fake screenshots and stories on how to find her already started to appear all over the Internet.

Lola is a prostitute who appears on promotional artwork for the game. In October 2007, her character art was painted on the side of a building in SoHo, New York, advertising the game. She can be found near the docks. After a certain point in the game, you can search the Police Database for Lola Del Rio and it will tell you she was one of the first prostitute to return to Star Junction (Time Square) even after it was called a family zone.

Little is known about her, and no one is certain if she is in the game. She might not even be a prostitute, as it says she came to Liberty City to become a stage performer.

LCPD Database
Surname : Del Rio
First Name : Lola
Age: 22
Place of Birth : San Fierro
Affiliations : N/A
Criminal Record :
2003 - Prostitution

2005 - Public Lewdness

2007 - Prostitution

Notes :
Believed to have moved to Liberty City from San Fierro

to pursue a stage career.

One of the first prostitutes to return to Star Junction

after it was said to be a family friendly zone.

Often seen sucking on a red lollipop.
The red dots are where it was claimed Lola can be found, and the red lines represent her possible routes.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Don't let it go to your head (plus a review of "The Fall")

Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing... MODOK:

MODOK is spectacularly hideous, and therefore great fun to draw.

And now, a five second review!

* * *
The Fall (In theaters now!)

Contrasting a slyly humorous, self-aware, and visually gorgeous fantasy world against a nostalgic yet poignant view of 1920's Los Angeles, The Fall elegantly tells the story of two convalescent hospital patients. Watch the trailer here.

Verdict: Awesome. Just go watch it!

For More Fantasy Movie Awesomeness: Corny and not self-aware, Krull is still pretty awesome. Just saying.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Wizard World Philly and Subway Sketching Postponed

Hi Everyone,

Friday May 30th to Sunday June 1st Bobby, T and I will be in Philadelphia for Wizard World Philly. Because of this, Subway Sketching is postponed until June 8th.

If you're in the area, come on by. We'd love to say hi!
We'll be at:
TABLE 1401-1403

Here are some recent subway sketches...rotating my pens and pencils for practice. Hope you like them :)

Here's some killer links that we've wanted to add for quite some time but never got the chance to!
Sylvain Marc

Geneviève Godbout

Nathan Fowkes’ Landscapes

Nathan Fowkes

Erwin Madrid

Oren Haskins

Claudio Acciari

Aurélien Predal

Chhuy-Ing IA

there's more links to come...


Friday, May 23, 2008

sound vs. noise

I dont think theres anybody out there who is as fixated about sounds as I am. A good tune can (and quite often does) make me cry or laugh out loud. A strange noise outside my window will have me intrigued until I uncover its origin. I love to listen to sounds in the forest and have to have music surround me most of my time. Music is the heart of my life, as corny as it may sound.

But then theres the kind of noise that I loathe. And those kind of noises will consume me even more than pleasant sounds do. My downstairs neighbour is an alcoholic. I see no reason to get worked up about it as some of my elderly neighbours do. But then, in the middle of the night, he brings his friends home from the park (where they usually hang out, drinking homemade vodka). They talk loud. I start to twitch. They put the music on. I get my earplugs. They start to sing along to some tacky Swedish pop tune and I am livid. I hate him. I lie in my bed and wish I was a bloke so I could go down and piss through his letterbox.

I think about phoning the police, and then hate myself being so petty.

what would I want someone to do if I had a noisy party? I think to myself, the damaged daughter of a psychiatrist I am.

oh, of course I will go downstairs and knock on his door and politely ask him to turn his noise down.

I get out of my warm bed, get dressed and wander downstairs. Knock on his door. Knock again. And again. No one gives a fuck. I hate him. I hate his screechy doorbell and I hate his stupid stereo with his knackered speakers. I hate his arrogance and most of all I hate being the kind of person who had to get out of bed to knock on his door.

Finally the music and out-of-tune-sing-along stops. I get back into bed. Five minutes later theres loud banging in my ceiling:

thump-thump-thump paws-paws-paws thump-thump-thump paws-paws-paws

The upstairs neighbour has a gorgeous Labrador who enjoys playing with his tennis ball in the middle of the night. Now how come that noise makes me smile?

I bet I could pass the Chunin Exams...

Is it weird that I, a grown man, often daydream about being a shinobi of the Hidden Leaf Village?

Obviously I have been catching up on my Naruto. Naruto is seriously one of my favorite things ever.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

GTA IV Pißwasser Beer

Enjoy the crisp, salty taste of Pißwasser. The German fighting lager of choice for the more discerning binge drinker. Brewed from rice, barley, hops and the fresh urine of Bavarian virgins.

Warning: May cause karaoke and domestic violence.

Pißwasser Advertisement Video

Some webmasters were lucky enough to receive a box of Pißwasser beer from Rockstar Games. Click here to download Pißwasser jingle.

Things I ate, and an awesome bonus illustration from a SUPERSTAR artist

Food consumed this weekend was as follows (in chronological order):

  • 1 large turkey hoagie cross-section, approximately 4 x 4 x 3"
  • 1 plate full of barbecue chips, kettle-cooked
  • 2 Snapple ice teas
  • 1 slice of chocolate cheesecake
  • 1 pear
  • 1/2 order of sliced chicken with garlic sauce (Chinese take-out)
  • 1/2 order of mixed vegetables in light sauce (Chinese take-out)
  • approximately 3 glasses of Fresca
  • 1 foot-long Subway tuna sub (with American cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, spinach, black olives, cilantro, and mustard)


My pal, Dustin took some time out of his crazy rockstar schedule to draw an awesome piece for me:
click above for larger view

The l'il robot on the left is my character Cog and the super-hott dame on the right is Big Barda, my favorite character from DC's New Gods.

YOU'RE THE MAN, DUSTIN! Be sure to check out his Deviant Art gallery, and go buy all his issues of Detective Comics, available in finer comic book stores now!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Free digital painting video - Bobby Chiu

Here's a new commission I did recently for Sketchbook Pro. I've been kinda selective about jobs recently but I loved doing this one because they let me do anything I wanted! My initial idea for this piece was a dark-ish little girl with a pet creature that she "dolls up" in the way that normal girls might dress up a cat or a puppy.

To see the mini tutorial and interview with Sketchbook Pro please click HERE

I recorded the process of the entire painting and did a time lapse while talking over top of it. This is a video podcast about my experiences as an artist and the lessons I've learned that will hopefully help other artists achieve their goals.


Friday, May 16, 2008



Pretty Fly For A Shy Guy

Today I've got a Shy Guy for you, from the world of Super Mario Brothers. I've taken a few liberties, but overall this is a pretty straight-up interpretation.

I think I've mentioned before how much I love the mythology of video games, in spite of my ineptitude at actually playing video games. I've been playing a little Smash Brothers and Mario Kart at Hammers's apartment recently, so the larger Mario-verse has been on my mind. Luckily, a site like Super Mario Wiki exists, so that I may satisfy my deep craving for obscure trivia about the Mario-verse.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

All for Love!

I'm happy that I can finally share this with everyone, a different job from me . . . this was actually a collaboration of a few artists. I worked with the animation company Nathan Love who have done some amazing commercials, very talented guys. They created a baby-like cupid with no hair or wings and the gun, it was handed to me as a pencil drawing. Another artist painted the background. This was an interesting job because I didn't do any drawing besides the hair and wings . . . my part in this was to paint the cupid and gun so that it felt like and old "Victorian" painting . . . this was a challenging job and was a lot of fun doing something different!

The final billboard hangs in a train station somewhere in Switzerland, 30ft x 100ft . . . . crazy!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Just Swimming Along...and Street Fighter sneek peek!

This is a fun little sketch I did not too long ago.. I needed to do something more peaceful and relaxing---aaahh, I wish I was her right now! I'm planning to turn this into a finished painting.

And also..

Here's a seek peek of my contribution to the "Art of Street Fighter Tribute" book.
This was a very last minute thing and I didn't expect to be in it because of work, but I've grown up with Street Fighter so I couldn't help but do one! Thank you to the guys at Udon Comics!!

Its over 300 pages of kick ass art! And there's a cool art contest too. To find out more info, or to pre-order CLICK HERE.


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Don't Go Crying To Your Mummy

In need of a last minute subject, I turned to my crony Charles, who suggested a mummy:

This sketch continues the informal series I started last Halloween (comprising of this and this, so far).

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Textural Healing

(Posting early.)

Today, a momentary respite from the recent deluge of He-Man related sketches. I was working on this one a few months ago, but put it on the backburner as other things came up. I sketched and 'inked' this piece in Photoshop (in addition to coloring in Photoshop, as usual), so the result is 100% digital. The subject matter was pretty random. I started sketching a girl, which became a go-go girl, and then I just threw in a ray gun for the heck of it. This is what happens when I let my mind wander. Really.

click above for larger view

I decided to stretch my wings a bit and experment with some textures for this piece--the blue and purple pattern on her dress was created by me, using pressure-sensitive opacity brushes in Photoshop; the other textures were taken from free texture sites (this one and this one). The texture for her hair is a sunset, and the texture for the boots and purse is stained glass. All in all, I'm pretty happy with the results.

IMPORTANT MATTER FOR ARTISTS - we must take action today! Do not lose ownership of your art!

Please post this in your blog! Very important.

I read this on!
IMPORTANT MATTER FOR ARTISTS - we must take action today! Do not lose ownership of your art!

Hi everyone,

The text below will be self-explanatory. There is an important issue facing us as artists, related to the copyrights of our works, which corporations wish to control and take at our expense, We must put a stop to this immediately unless you wish to see others owning and plagiarizing your art.

This is too important to ignore please participate and forward to your others.
House version:

Senate version:
Congress is rushing these bills through to a floor vote. The House will start marking up their version of the bill at 2:00 today; the Senate will do so tomorrow. To try to stop this bill, we first need to slow down the race to get it passed.


Take Action: Don't Let Congress Orphan Our Work

We've set up an online site for visual artists to e-mail their Senators and Representatives with one click.

This site is open to professional artists, photographers and any member of the image-making public.

We've provided sample letters from individuals representing different sectors of the visual arts.

If you're opposed to the Orphan Works act, this site is yours to use.

For international artists and our colleagues overseas, we've provided a special link, with a sample letter and instructions as to whom to write.

2 minutes is all it takes to write Congress and protect your copyright:

For international people like myself, you can help by participating HERE

Please forward this message to every artist you know.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

GTA IV PS3 Zombie Skin

Zombie Gameplay Video

Zombie skin is available exclusively for PlayStation 3 owners. In order to get it all you have to do is to level up you character to level 1 in multiplayer. Then press L1 and choose an option to play as a zombie. Also by pressing L1 again you can customize your zombie’s outfit. If you press L1 while playing as the zombie, he will growl.

Monday, May 5, 2008

I'd be lion if I said this wasn't a terrible title.

(Posting Early... )

Today's illustration is a monstrous steed for the subject of my previous post. He resembles his mythological namesake, but with some minor differences, and of course he's patterned after Battle Cat, Panthor, and my own fan character, War-Tiger. He is not to be confused with Montecore.

click above for larger view

This one feels a little stiff and "blah" to me. But as longtime readers will note, I live my life by the phrase, "they can't all be winners." I'm happy with the color scheme though... I feel like I successfully emulated the bright and garish style of 80's action figures. Forward, to the nerdy bio!

* * *

PROFILE: Armed with a poisonous sting, a deafening roar, and the power of flight, the fearsome MANTICORE serves HIGH PRIEST LEO as loyally as the High Priest serves the God-King of Infinita. Like Battle Cat, Manticore is a highly intelligent creature, fully capable of speech.

HISTORY: Upon achieving the rank of High Priest, Manticore was granted to Leo by the God-King of Infinita himself, as a servant and ally. Manticore is the head of his clan, and is widely known for his arrogant sense of pride as well as his steadfast sense of loyalty and duty.

* * *

Also posted on the fan-art forums. The thread is here, and my post is here.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Crabby Chat

Hi Everyone!
Here's another little cutie Bobby Chiu and I did recently. It's another piece for our new book coming out end of the month called "Water Worlds."
Painted in Photoshop.

Here's a little WIP gif

Hope you like it!


Friday, May 2, 2008

Starts with a "Skele-" and ends with a "-tor"

Okay, strap yourselves in kiddies, it's gonna be a bumpy ride. And by bumpy I mean nerdy. And by nerdy, I mean Skeletor-related.

Basically, there was a variation of Skeletor manufactured in India with a significantly different, darker color scheme. The Indian toy company was named Leo, and so this variation is known amongst He-Man enthusiasts as Leo Skeletor. Naturally, I decided that I needed to turn this into a new character, as is my custom:

click above for larger view

I'll be the first to admit, this one is kind of a stretch. I took a look at the original toy and decided that I would interpret his dark blue body as chain mail, and using the moniker "Leo" as a theme, I integrated lion-related imagery into his armor to differentiate him from Skeletor proper. After that, his personality and background quickly fell into place.

A not-so-brief note to the truest of He-Man die-hards--you will note that the character's ring is modelled after the glow-in-the-dark skull insignia ring that was included with the Trap Jaw and Tri-Klops action figures. The ring has no official backstory or copy attached to it--however the symbol on it has popularly become known amongst fans as the "Grayskull symbol," believed to be modelled after Castle Grayskull or the spirit of Castle Grayskull (a smokey skull-shaped apparition that appeared in several of the early mini-comics that were packaged with the action figures).

However, this explanation still didn't quite sit right with me... the shapes projecting from the top of the skull insignia's head were too pointy to be the battlements of Castle Grayskull, and were also far too regular to be wisps of smoke as per the spirit of Grayskull. To my eyes, the projections looked far more like three demonic horns. While all that could be perhaps dismissed as me looking at the ring's visual cues too literally, something bothered me even more--the fact that the ring was included only with two of Skeletor's best-known evil warriors. Why were they the bearers of the mysterious rings?

To make a long story long, I decided to go against conventional wisdom--the insignia is not a symbol of Grayskull in my interpretation. I don't claim to be an expert, and this is all just for fun, so I hope you'll all enjoy yourselves as the story of that insignia unfolds through the continuing profiles of my variant characters, moving from the classic Masters of the Universe line, to the New Adventures of He-Man, and beyond.

* * *

PROFILE: Hailing from the world Infinita, and serving the God-King of Infinita, HIGH PRIEST LEO is an alien warrior-cleric of the highest order. He was born of the same process that created Skeletor--given demonic powers and a terrifying skeletal visage through dark spellcraft and ritual scarring. Armed with a Havoc Staff (the traditional weapon of Infinitan priests) and accompanied by his winged mount MANTICORE, there is no zealot more fiercely devoted than Leo, whose famed exploits in the name of the God-King have earned him the title "the Lion of Infinita." All who cross High Priest Leo's path will bow to the will of the God-King of Infinita. HAIL INFINITA!

HISTORY: With no communications received from Eternia in years, Skeletor was declared a renegade, and the High Priest Leo was dispatched from Infinita to track down and report Skeletor's whereabouts. His vessel damaged by a meteor shower, Leo crash landed somewhere in the jungles of Eternia, and began the long trek towards Snake Mountain.

Nearing the perimeter of Skeletor's Fortress, Leo spyed Trap Jaw and Tri-Klops standing guard. With little effort, Leo stepped into the open and bested them both. As Trap Jaw lay on the ground groaning in agony, his prosthetic arm torn from its socket, Leo level his Havoc staff at Tri-Klops. Tri-Klops's glaring red eye widened at the sight of Leo's ring, bearing the insignia of the God-King of Infinita--a triple-horned black skull. "W-wait--there's been a misunderstanding!" he stammered, as he fumbled through his belt pouch. Amused, the High Priest paused to see what attempt at bribery this Eternian could muster--though it did not matter, Leo would kill him one way or another. What Tri-Klops produced from his pouch was not gold or silver, but a blank ring. Tri-klops put it on his finger and held up his hand for Leo to see.

"Hail Infinita! Hail the God-King!" Tri-Klops cried. With a gleam of demonic energy, the triple-horned skull insignia materialized on Tri-klops's ring. "We've been waiting for you, my lord."

With great effort, Trap Jaw clumsily managed to put on a similar ring on his remaining good hand. He muttered the same invocation, and an identical insignia appeared on his ring as well. Leo stayed his hand, somewhat disappointed that he would have to spare these two Eternian wretches. "Tell me everything you know," Leo demanded.

In the distance, a stealthy barbarian and his dreadlocked young ward strained to hear the conversation between the High Priest, the swordsman, and the cyborg. When the invader fell from the skies, they had shadowed him silently, ultimately tracking him to the fringes of Skeletor's lands. The barbarian decided that they could no longer risk detection--it was imperative that this development was relayed to his allies in the capital.

Without a noise, Savage sneaked away, his protege on his heels.

* * *

Also posted here on my variants thread on the fan-art forum.

For my other "new characters from old variants" posts:

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Little Red Dragon

We found this shy little sea dragon observing us from a bank of coral. He was no bigger than my thumb, but one of our explorer friends claimed that, on a dive last year, she'd come across a full grown sea dragon that was the size of three school buses!

Hi everyone,

Here's a new pic Bobby and I did together. This is a study on deep sea photography. It's a cute little sea dragon for our new book "Water Worlds". For pre-orders click ---> [link]

Hope you like it!


Here's a little WIP gif.