Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Bay Area Sketchcrawl summer 2014

 The 'Russian Mansion' on Alamo Square.

 Haight and Masonic. The nudist strolled past and into my picture, his modesty preserved by a golden fig leaf! The freaks, hippies, beatniks and junkies still flourish in Haight Ashbury.

 A trip to Berkeley Marina. The pier above stretches 3000 ft into the Bay!

 Mojo Bicycle Cafe on Divisadero.

 A couple views from the top of Piedmont Cemetery with Downtown Oakland in the background and the Bay behind.

These old navy vets were in full uniform for a memorial service. They each carried a rifle and fired a salute for their departed brother.


This house on 'Billionaire's Row' in Pacific Heights looks like a Greek temple.

Mansion over-looking the Bay on Lafayette Square. Apparently the largest private residence in San Francisco and owned by Danielle Steele.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Incredibles Gesture Class

More Gesture Class sketches where the poses were inspired by 'The Incredibles' (digitally coloured later).

 30 sec. warm-ups

 1 min. poses

Friday, July 11, 2014


'Une doxie a Paris'

Dachshunds came from all over to worship the great Dox Idol. 

Dachshund Hammett had a San Francisco based Pet Detective Agency. This picture shows him in Chinatown tailing the philandering husband of the drop dead gorgeous French Poodle that hired him. 

'Bavarian Dachshund' 
Did you know the dachshund breed originates in the Bavarian Alps where they are specially bred to hold large quantities of beer? Mini lederhosen are tailored to each dog with their family crest sewn into the pocket.

'The Dachshund of Liberty' 

'Western Dachshund' 

'Explorer Dachshund' 

'Hockney's Dachshund' 

'Picasso's Dachshund' 

The prehistoric dachshund! Did you know dachshunds evolved from fearsome, giant creatures into the lovable dox we know today.


'Venice Beach Dachshund' 

 'Longhair Dachshund' 


 'The Dachshund of Nob Hill' 

'Polynesian Dachshund' 

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

San Francisco Noir

SF based illustrator Ben Walker and I went on a themed sketch-crawl over the July 4th holiday. Inspired by a recent article in the NY Times on Dashiel Hammett's connection to the city.

We trailed Hammett all over San Francisco. We started at 891 Post St where  Sam Spade's detective agency was based in the Tenderloin. Then on to Burritt Alley to see the site where Spade's partner was killed. A plaque marks “On approximately this spot, Miles Archer, Sam Spade’s partner, was done in by Brigid O’Shaughnessy.”

 This is a view from Dashiel Emmett alley

With still no sign of Hammett we broke for lunch at Lori's Diner, on Powell to compare notes.  We gum-shoed it down to the Flood Building on Market Street, where Hammett was employed as a private dick for the Pinkerton's.

Near Union Sq. we bribed the doorman of a downtown hotel where Hammett was known to stay. There's even a suite named after him. . . 

Around the corner is Hammett's favorite hang-out, John's Bar & Grill. Still in business as a restaurant and now the HQ of the Hammett Society. The author is said to have written much of 'The Maltese Falcon' at a booth here.
We went inside and smooth-talked the dame on the front desk. She let us go upstairs and find the famous falcon itself.

Pinkerton's were on to us so we high tailed it through the Stockton Tunnel and laid low in North Beach. We had a tip-off that Hammett liked to drink at Tosca cafe but we lost him in the crowd. We sat outside a cafe and observed the wild-life on Broadway.
He was elusive, kept to the shadows but we're gumshoes and we'll find him. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon ... 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Digital Gesture Drawing

Testing out a new stylus and sketching app from Adobe on the i-pad Air. The stylus is called Ink and the drawing app is Adobe Sketch. I-pad drawing still isn't as intuitive as Wacom but these tools gave me a kind of wire-sculpture feel which is perfect for Gesture Drawing.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Time-lapse inking

A friend commissioned me to work up a version of the sketch I made of North Beach landmarks Vesuvio's and City lights Book store. I roughed it out in pencil, threw down a light wash then while inking it I thought I'd try and record it in a time-lapse video.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Gesture Drawing Class

This is a test video made under ad-hoc conditions; i-phone balanced above my shoulder on a shelf, me drawing while trying to keep an eye on the phone and the paper in view. Not ideal but several people have asked me to video myself drawing in gesture class and I hope to make some better quality clips soon. These drawings aren't very good and I break all the rules you're supposed to use but this will give you an idea of my approach. 1 minute poses and I'm drawing slooooooow! It's weird to watch yourself draw.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Jack-Jack Manhattan

This weekend the Cartoon Art Museum San Francisco holds its annual fundraiser at Pixar.It will be a day of 'Incredibles' events inc. the original crew (Bird, Mandrews, Ted, Kev, Tony Fucile) talking about the film plus an auction of 'Incredibles' themed artwork. I did this Incredibles/Watchmen mash-up: 'Jack-Jack Manhattan' 6"x6" Gouache & acrylic on clayboard. 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Keeping up With The Joneses

My parents came to visit back in March and I've been working on some paintings based on the highlights from our Northern California expeditions. We went on the Hitchcock trail; Muir Woods (Vertigo) and found the old schoolhouse at Bodega used in The Birds. The bleached cypress tree and sealions are from the 17 mile drive around Carmel. 

Saturday, May 10, 2014


I painted a Stormtrooper helmet for Star Wars Day! Nowhere near as imaginative as a lot of the others you'll see but it was fun to create a Yoda camouflage. Thanks to Jeffrey Jon Pidgeon for the pix. More info here