Tuesday, October 22, 2013


So there I was, snorkeling with the kids, looking for crabs, sand dollars, snails, starfish, whatever and along floats a dead Crevalle Jack. A small one to be sure, but a very fresh one. In fact, it still had a small fish in its throat. I am unable to pass up small gifts like these. So my wife, who is very understanding, advised me to put the fish in the cooler and take it home for later use.

I have been reading a lot about gyotaku lately. Ever since I took up fishing agin, I have been enamored of the idea of printing my fish. This little Jack was a great opportunity to engage in some saltwater gyotaku.

This is the fish as I found it; it has been cleaned, dried and positioned on styrofoam. 

My next step was to paint the fish using oil based relief inks. I tried to approximate the natural colors of the fish, but I think I may have juiced the colors a bit.

This is the print as it looked immediately after having pulled it. The eyes are painted in later, after the print has dried. 

The finished print complete with painted eyes.

Monday, August 26, 2013

New Drawing Book Pages

The one on the left was during the chapel homily at school and the other was done during The homily at church. I only work in pencil or pen during church, all the color work is saved for later.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Revelation 12

I like to make artistic resurrections. I rarely throw anything away - even the complete junk. Because, hey, you never know. Sometimes painting over that failed piece, or turning it upside down and scrawling all over it is just the thing.
Some time ago I assigned master copy linocuts to my high school art class. The venerable Albrecht Durer's Madonna and Child on a Crescent Moon was among my students' choices.

Very good you say; but Durer was very good and even diligent students find him difficult. If diligent students find him difficult, those who are less-than-diligent find him nearly impossible:

There was a lot about this that I really, really didn't like. But there was something that I hoped I could work with. The student was beyond done with this print and didn't care about the image at all. So I decided to take the best impression he had and see what I could do with it. Here is what I came up with:

I am very happy with this piece. Since I never screw up on any of my own work (ahem), I hope to have more lackluster student pieces in the future that I can work with!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Florida Swamp Animals

These are some preparatory watercolors I have done for some murals to go on 1st grade classrooms. These images will be printed on dimensional PVC and attached to the walls of the classrooms. My colleague and I will paint backgrounds directly on the walls of the classroom that these will go on. I anticipate putting some bluegills, turtles and trees to go with these animals. That's the plan anyway.

Friday, August 2, 2013


I am a keeper of chickens. I like them very much and sometimes I even draw them. But I usually add things that are not strictly in keeping with actual chicken anatomy. I sort of picture these two as a squabbling couple. The rooster is being hen-pecked.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

New Illustrations

Earlier in the summer I was asked to do a series of illustrations for a short book on classical education co-written by my brother and a colleague of ours. I did six images in pen and ink. Lots of cross hatching here. This first image is of "Pius Aeneas". This is the scene in the Illiad where Aeneas dutifully carries his aged father to safety as the strong-greaved Achaians sack Troy.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

More monsters for another day

Here are the next four monsters in the tremendously fun Monster-A-Day series.


At the end of the school year I found myself signing yearbooks for students. Since I am not the sentimental type, I made monster drawings in each of their books. Each drawing took about 5 to 10 minutes and, I thought, turned out rather nicely. So I decided to do a monster a day drawing project. One monster each day for 25 days, black and white, pen and ink. Some days I drew no monsters and some days I drew four. I'm irregular like that. Below are the first four of the series.