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    Entries in Illustration (43)

    Monday
    Mar152010

    Hop, Throttle, Soar: Adam's Picture

    This illustration is a very special piece that I was honored to be asked to do because it's for a four year old boy named Adam Grover.  Adam's two favorite things in the world are frogs and the Blue Thunder Monster Truck.  Adam was diagnosed with Mitochondrial Myopathy Complexes I & IV on June 4th 2008.  This mitochondrial disease affects the mitochondria of the cells, which harness energy for the body.  The disease leaves him very tired, among other symptoms, that get in the way of living life as four year old boy who wants to play and go to school.  It ultimately leads to fatality, and there is no cure.  There are certain kinds of vitamins that can possibly help to treat this disease, but insurance does not cover them.  Here's a picture of Adam and his Blue Thunder toy:


    This piece is going to be presented to Adam at his Make A Wish party this spring, where Blue Thunder and its driver will be present.  I am beyond touched and grateful at being able to participate in this celebration of Adam.  To find out more about Adam and/or to find out how donate to his fund to help contribute to medical costs, please click here.

    The challenge for this picture was to come up with a way to integrate the frogs and the Blue Thunder Monster Truck into an image together so that it made sense.  I wanted to draw tree frogs because I think they are simultaneously beautiful and odd looking animals.  I love their bright green color and their contrasting bright red eyes.  Their bodies are a lot like rubber humans, which make them fun to draw.  I thought the best way to overcome the size difference between small frogs and a huge truck was to show the frogs in the foreground, and Blue Thunder behind them.  Because these frogs live in the rain forest, I thought it would be great to showcase the truck ramping off of the rain forest mountainside.  This gave me an excuse to be able to illustrate a lush rain forest aerial landscape shot.  I like these kinds of views because they let me to create the kind of picture where you want to go inside it and explore all the different places in it.  Click on the pictures below to access larger versions.


    Blue Thunder Detail:


    Frogs on the left detail:


    Frogs on the right detail:


    11.5 x 7.75 Bristol board.

    Pencil, ink, Prismacolor pencil.

    ©Kevenn T. Smith 2011

    Monday
    Feb082010

    Cold Hands, Warm Heart: An Ice Valentine by Kevenn T. Smith

    This is a Valentine artcard featuring Justice League international character, Ice, whose real name is Tora Olafsdotter.  Ice is a princess of a tribe of magic people hidden in Norway.  Her powers allow her to create and manipulate ice.  And while her powers are very cold, Ice is known for her warm and sweet personality.

    Because February is such a cold month where I live, and because Ice is such a caring person, I thought she'd be perfect for a Valentine's Day card.  Ice was stupidly killed off at one point, but has been thankfully resurrected by Gail Simone during her first run of the Birds of Prey title.  I am very glad Tora was brought back, because there aren't enough loving characters like her in the comics.  Not every character needs be be tough and hard or sarcastic and bitter.  She even charmed the heart of a hardened character like Green Lantern, Guy Gardner.  Ice brings personality diversity to the characters in comic books, and I like to give her features a more diverse look as well.  While I was doing this card, I really liked the idea of making her eyelashes white as well.  I think they give her a very fantastical quality.

    This artcard and all the other artcards I’ve done are all original hand-made works and can be purchased or $15 plus shipping ($4.95 USPS Priority Shipping – international shipping will be calculated upon an individual order).

    Ice, Tora Olafsdotter, Valentine Portrait ©Kevenn T. Smith 2010

    4.25 x 5.5 inches cardstock.

    Pencil, ink, Prismacolor pencil.


    Ice, Tora Olafsdotter ©DC Comics 2010

    Now also available as cards and postcards at RedBubble.com!

    Wednesday
    Jan272010

    Singular Sensation: Yurgod the Gryphon

    This Singular Sensation entry showcases my illustration of Yurgod the Gryphon that I did for the wrap-around cover of issue #37 of Oziana Magazine.  Yurgod the Gryphon is a character from the Russian Oz series of books.  When The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was translated into Russian, it seems that it took on a life of its own, and several follow-up books were written in Russian, completely separate from the Oz books that L. Frank Baum continued to write.

    I was completely unfamiliar with Yurgod, but the challenge for the cover was to showcase characters that appeared in stories inside the issue.  Some characters I knew, but others, like Yurgod, I only had was a couple of images of him provided by my editor.  However, he was a visually appealing character, and I was eager to try my own take on him.  How could I resist the chance to draw a fantastical creature like this?  The drawings I had were very stylized, and I wanted to inject a sense of realism in anatomy to my version.  In order to depict him in a way that he would fit in even better with other Oz characters more firmly established in the canon, I wanted to add the bow to the end of his tail to echo the bows on the ends of the tails of the Cowardly Lion and the Hungry Tiger.  I think the bow makes him look decidedly "Ozzy."


    Pencils, Ink, Prismacolor Color Pencils, and Photoshop.
    ©Kevenn T. Smith 2011


    Now available on a t-shirt at RedBubble.com!

    Monday
    Dec142009

    A Boy And His Dog: Superboy & Krypto the Superdog

    This is a commission piece that I did of Superboy, Conner (Kon-El) Kent, and Krypto the Superdog.  Superboy is a clone using DNA of both Superman and Lex Luthor.  The current DC Comics stories have Conner living with Martha Kent on the Kent Farm and going to school in Smallville, much like Clark Kent did when he was growing up.

    For me, this piece was also an opportunity to go back to the rural small towns and farm areas that were nearby where I went to college.  I had the opportunity to go back there earlier this year for a wedding, and I think it really helped me in depicting the small town/rural setting.

    This illustration is available as prints. Please use the "Contact Me" form at the top-left of this page to request one and inquire further about pricing and sizes.

    Superboy & Krypto by Kevenn T. Smith ©Kevenn T. Smith 2009

    Superboy & Krypto Zoom-In by Kevenn T. Smith ©Kevenn T. Smith 2009

    8" x 10.5" on Bristol Board
    Prismacolor Color Pencils

    Superboy & Krypto © DC Comics 2011

    Tuesday
    Oct062009

    Singular Sensation: Dorothy & Ozma - Princesses of Oz

    You knew it was coming - the Singular Sensation entry that features the last part of the website header illustration.  If you know The Wizard of Oz, you know who Dorothy is, however most people aren't used to seeing her portrayed as a blond.  They expect to see a brunette with braided pigtails, ala Judy Garland.  While Dorothy did look like that in the book, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, with Dorothy's return in the third book of the Oz series, Ozma of Oz, Dorothy was portrayed as a blond with a fashionable haircut by John R. Neill.  Neill continued to portray Dorothy with this look throughout the books that he illustrated, which equaled to many more appearances than brunette portrayal in the first book.

    Princess Ozma of Oz came on the scene in the second book of the series, The Marvelous Land of Oz.  Ozma, who was a fairy and the rightful ruler of Oz, was restored to the throne.  When Ozma and Dorothy met, the two got along famously and became best friends.  Ozma ended up making Dorothy a Princess of Oz.  In the sixth book of the series (which Baum intended to be the last, but was besieged with requests of "More Oz, Mr. Baum!"), The Emerald City of Oz, Dorothy, along with Toto, Uncle Henry, and Aunt Em (and Eureka the kitten whom we met in the fourth book, Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz) all moved to Oz permanently.

    In portraying Dorothy, I like to stick to Neill's blond take on her.  I also draw her with visual cues like silver shoes and in modernizing her, I give her a gingham-like print on her t-shirt.  In Oz, you never grow older unless you want to, and Oz creators like Eric Shanower have Dorothy changing with the time, while remaining a child.  Even Neill drew Dorothy's hair cut changing trhough the years that he illustrated the Oz books, through the early 1900's to the 30's.

    I like that approach.  Ozma is usually depicted as being a little bit older than Dorothy.  Her pendant is a representation of the different areas of Oz:  Green in the middle for the Emerald City, yellow Winkie Country to the west, the purple Quadling Country to the north, the blue Munchkin Country to the east, and the red Quadling Country in the south.  Ozma was usually drawn wearing two large poppies on either side of her tiara, which I followed, but I left off some of the ornamental ribbons that were usually included on there as a way of showing that in some ways, Ozma is keeping up with the times too.  Who wears ribbons in their hair any more?  Like Dorothy, Ozma was also drawn differently as the Oz series progressed, even getting a little older.  I also thought it'd be nice to break the background tradition for the Singular Sensation entries and include a more detailed background.  It better contrasts with the rainbow magic and sparkles.

    Dorothy and Ozma by Kevenn T. Smith © Kevenn T. Smith 2009

    Pencils, Ink, Prismacolor Color Pencils,  Watercolor, and Photoshop.
    ©Kevenn T. Smith 2011


    Now available on a t-shirt at RedBubble.com!

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