Saturday, March 28, 2009

Working out with a Pencil

As some of you may know I am about to embark on another massive waste of resources that is commonly associated with the production of an independent animated film. Jeez, another caveman thing, what a monumental surprise. Here are some preliminary sketches of one of the primary characters, Ooga-ooga. I am trying some different ideas here even within the same drawing. Decisions, decisions.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Longhair and Doubledome's Cave

Background for "Good Wheel Hunting", a pilot for the Cartoon Network.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

From Post it to final

Doing a little twitter button. Probably won't make the cut, too damn cute, but what the hell, I thought I would post something before I go stealth for a couple of days.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

More pictures of Knock Knock

Here are some crappy pictures of the old studio. I can't remember if we ever got the damn place painted.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A little story

I once went to a large canyon to see if I could hear my echo. When I reached the rocky ledge, I yelled out the first thing that came to mind, "HEY!". After a brief moment, a voice echoed back, "Help me, please, help, I fell off the ledge!" It didn't even sound like me, stupid echo.

More Art from the Archives

MAKTAR Line-up

Here is the final character line-up for the ill-fated project produced for the Cartoon Network. Shot down for various reasons, I still like the designs. I mean who could hate kids named, Leadbelly, Fries, and Poot.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Remembering Knock Knock

Here is a picture of many of the people who worked at the Cleveland studio of Knock Knock Cartoons. I was fortunate to work with and know some incredibly talented people during our 12 years there. Pictured from the top left, L. Todd Myers (Todd, Todd, the Ink god, great designer, director, this guy was crazy good), Big Gav, Dave Fedan (Dave, Dave, the Inking Knave also crazy good at everything), the great Tom Parker, Melissa Heltzel (the best writer and assistant ever), Cody Wood (Great talent), Anthony Judge (Frans Hals), Ed Zimmer (of the black nail polish), Sarah Curry (of the red lipstick), and Mike Chipchak (one talented guy). Not pictured unfortunately, Valerie Totire (Ms. versatility), Ben Smallridge (a phenomenal digital artist and animator) , Bev Chiara (one of the best cel painters I ever knew), Bridget Ginley (wonderful watercolors), and Pants Sechrist (this dude rocks, big rocks).

Friday, March 13, 2009


I love gorillas nearly as much as I love cavemen. I wonder what that says about me, hmm, I will ponder that one another day. In the late 70's, I spent hours in the Ape house of the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago sketching the great apes. I loved drawing the form of one powerful Gorilla in particular named of all things, Fred. One day as I was standing by the glass with my wife, Jackie, Fred sauntered over. Standing there in front of me, motionless, Fred posed sideways to the glass nonchalantly showing off his massive arms and incredible physique. Without warning, Fred launched a powerful fist directly at my face and pounded the glass with a thunderous boom. The action caused the crowd there to gasp and I was proud that I didn't scream out like a school girl. I stood there stunned, mouth agape, checking my chest for pulse. My wife and I couldn't stop talking about it for days or at least I couldn't stop talking about it. A couple of months later, my brother in law, Bob came to town and we took him over to the zoo and of course to the Ape house. I had to introduce everyone to my buddy Fred, and as soon as we were in front of Fred's enclosure I started to tell Bob the story of Fred and our stormy relationship. As I came to the conclusion of the story, Fred looked over in my direction, rose from his seated position in the back of the glass cage, and slowly made his way in front of me. He stood there motionless once again and I thought for sure we were going to be treated to a repeat performance. Instead, Fred raised his giant hand, suspending it for a moment and then gently tapped the glass in front of my nose. He then returned back to his favorite spot after his little joke left me once again speechless. Remarkable. So here is my portrait of Fred and the gorillas he inspired for a commercial that Knock Knock Cartoons did years later for the Field Museum of Chicago. Research never dies, it just gets filed away.

I have to blog

Now that I have posted the famous "Foot Job" I will have to start blogging again, just to get it to another page. Hard for me to look at it, and not cry.

Monday, March 9, 2009

From the GAV Production Days

OMG. I think everyone who has been in the animation business long enough will have the pleasure and pain of doing an animation job so bizarre that it defies any known logic. I believe as animators we all come across a job that solidly ascertains your place in animation whore history. Back in the early 90's, GAV Productions, my first company, had its day in the blistering sun of the "job that time forgot". THE FOOT JOB. It was a 20 minute film for diabetic foot care and the main characters were feet, feet with faces on them. My favorite was the all knowing, Professor Foot, complete with moustache and wire-rimmed glasses. There were other characters, primarily a male and female lead, characters on human ankles (only one ankle) who would walk into screen and educate us about the trials and tribulations of diabetic feet. Yes, it had it's unusual requests from the client, like make sure the mouths did not look like cuts or wounds (an issue for diabetics who have characters on their feet) and make the character action as natural as possible (again an odd request considering someone in animation LALA land is wearing a pair of glasses and a moustache on their ankle). The job did have couple wonderful advantages, it forced and taught me to draw feet, and we got paid. Other than that, I am still trying to forget.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Caveman hands

These were sketches for Doubledome's hand model sheet.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

I Heart Cavemen

Yes, I'll say it and everyone should know it. I am the king of Cavemen. I did them before Geico, I did them before they became popular. Cavemen are mine, all mine so back off, suckas. HA! Came across some drawings from Longhair and Doubledome in the vast Knock Knock Cartoons/Horrendous Fiasco archive. Thought I would share my love of cavemen with the whole damn blogging world. These drawings/designs were done by yours truly, and they were inked by Todd, Todd the Ink God, and Dave Dave, the Ink Slave. Both tremendous talents.