It's been a while since my last post... In addition to my Alternative Humor day job, I am busy teaching a course in Visual Development for the animators and illustrators at Cleveland Institute of Art. Part of the class is devoted to teaching the history of Visual Development, starting with Disney's Albert Hurter and working our way up to present day vis dev artists. The class is also visually developing and adapting a story to pitch to a hypothetical director, using their own artisitic POV and outside influences.
I hope the students are having as much fun in this class as I am!
The animated sci-fi/comedy TV show Packages from Planet X premiered on Disney XD this past Saturday morning, July 13, at 8:30 a.m. Needless to say, it was an exciting morning. The first episode included Feast Beastand Brain Briefs.
It was a long time in the making (7 years since I first pitched the concept) but I think worth the wait. I am no doubt completely biased, but I think it turned out to be a really fun show, thanks to the many people involved from AG Properties, DHX Media, Disney XD, and Teletoon. Thank you for your persistence, hard work, passion and for believing in this show!
This is the poster that I created for the advanced screening.
This is a sketch of the Magic Kingdom's Cinderella's Castle.
It's also the first drawing in the new Moleskine sketchbook.
OK, it's not another Charles M. Schulz Museum/Snoopy Moleskine sketchbook,
but I'm working on that.
This is a sketch of EPCOT's Germany Pavilion. Epcot is easily my favorite theme park because of the world showcase. It reminds me of the olympics in a way, which I am also a huge fan of. There is something about all the nations coming together in one happy place. Where else can you travel around the world in one day and encounter the people, architecture, and flavors of the different countries, AND watch a Bee Gee's concert? Ok, it was "Stayin Alive," the Bee Gee's tribute band, but they were very good. Anyway, we ate at Germany's Oktoberfest. Lots of yummy German food, fun entertainment, and a good amber beer called Hovels. Laura, our waitress from Germany, taught me how to say Hovels in German. You don't enunciate the "H,"like Huvells. I made that mistake. It's pronounced "oovelz" with a silent H.
This is the last drawing in my Charles M. Schulz Museum Moleskine sketchbook. I started drawing in this sketchbook on May 2011 in Santa Rosa, CA. It's been to NYC, Lake Placid, Montreal, Back to NYC (to Late Night with Jimmy Fallon w/ Of Monsters and Men; and to the The Eugene O'Neil Theater), Stockbridge MA (The Norman Rockwell Museum,) Salem MA and Canobe Park in NH (where I saw the best Michael Jackson impersonator of all time.) Lot of fun sketches and memories. Sooooo thank you, Snoopy sketchbook, for being my trusty sketchy travel companion. Now, sadly, you are out of pages. Time to replace the old dog with a new Snoopy Sketchbook. :o)
A bit of exciting news! Earlier this year I was nominated for a Chairman's Award at American Greetings in the Category of Creativity and Innovation. Last Wednesday I found out that I was the Grand Finalist/winner. I couldn't be more thrilled and honored!
The nomination was for creating two TV show concepts: Packages from Planet X, and another TV show concept currently in development. Packages is in production as we speak at DHX Media in Vancouver Canada, and is scheduled to air in the Spring of 2012 on Disney XD. Thanks to everyone at American Greetings Intellectual Properties for believing in these shows, and to all of our partners for doing such great work! Stay tuned for PFPX and be sure to contact your cable provider if you don't already have Disney XD.... and keep your fingers crossed for that other show!
I took a trip from upstate New York to Boston with some stops along the way: the Fenimore Museum in Cooperstown, NY, the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge MA (top), the Eric Carle Museum, Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and the Salem Witch Museum. Loved the Fenimore. They had a great collection of American impressionism and early American Folk Art. The Norman Rockwell museum was as I expected... great. Very inspirational to see his Post covers and original paintings. Eric Carle had original art from his books and art from "A Snowy Day" by Erza Keats. I just missed a Mo Williams visit (rats). The Salem Witch museum was a bit hokey, but still interesting. I spoke to a kid who worked at the museum and asked him what it was like in Salem during Halloween. Apparently they get "a million people" in town on Halloween night. He avoids town that night. Saw an amazing Michael Jackson impersonator at Canobie Park in Salem New Hampshire. His 15 minute show blew away the Immortal World Tour by Cirque Du Soleil, which cost 80 bucks in Cleveland OH.
Here are a few quick sketches of some of the sights and people I encountered along the way.
Went to New York City last week for a meeting and to find inspiration. Found plenty of that. Here is a sketch of the restaurant at Ace Hotel. Delicious food. I had the baked egg with spicy tomatoes and Chorizo sausage. Yum. I also got tickets for Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Here are some people that I sketched while waiting for the show to start. I saw "Of Monsters and Men" at the show. What a fantastic band.
More public info released for Packages from Planet X. These are links to Disney,Variety, and Kidscreen. All briefly mentionthat Packages From Planet X is one of the new animated series acquired by Disney XD, and will debut in early 2013.
is Maryoku Yummy, animated by OddBot. This has turned into a very cute show for pre-school aged children. Before Maryoku evolved into what it istoday, I did some really early visual development of environments like Nozomu and the Wish Mill. It was a while ago, but these were a lot of fun to work on... Above is a sketch of Nozomu, a magical place where Wishes and their Wish Sitters live.
The idea for this image is that under ground roots trap drops of water (center). The Yummy live in these mushroom houses, which defy gravity and crawl around on the underground roots like snails.
A very early concept of the Wish Mill... wishes would
drop down through roots in the ground and float
through a system of water ways to Nozomu.
Another Wish Mill Concept... Wishes drop down through roots
in the ground into another series of tubes, then enter the "mill."
The area below is where the wishes would be nurtured.
... and yet another Wish Mill concept.
This concept of the Wish Mill includes an early concept of Tapotapo/
mill. He's sort of controlling the whole process and all the wishes go through him.
"The Twisted Whiskers Show" is now on the HUB, formerly the Discovery Kids channel. I had fun working on the early development stage of the show, designing some of the backgrounds and characters. (see below for more...)
I imagine this guy stranded on an island or in the middle of the wilderness and he hallucinates that he's still in New York city trying to flag down a cab, but he's really chasing after a dolphin or a moose.