Thursday, March 29, 2007

Art Hugo Nominees

Congratulations to the Hugo nominees. After the time spent at last year's World Con business meeting debating the Art Hugo, I am glad to see that, while not a widely different line up than in recent yeasr, all five of these these artists are, in fact, current and influential artists. All five are wonderful at their trade....and they are pretty great peoples too. Congrats guys!
Bob Eggleton
Donato Giancola
Stephan Martiniere
John Picacio (Double congrats on the wedding!)
John Jude Palencar

If the boys are game I'll soon post mini galleries of their work created in past year.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Spectrum 14 In List

The list of who got into Spectrum 14 is posted. There were nearly 7,000 entries this year, to be included is truly an accomplishment. I'm glad to see a lot of my favorites listed and I'm super glad to see some of the younger people that I've been keeping an eye on listed. Lots of names I don't recognize -- somewhat due to the new concept art category -- which makes the wait for the book this fall all the more exciting. Congrats to everyone!

Medal winners posted here.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Stephan Martiniere: Pirate Sun Progressions

Anyone reading The Art Department for a while knows what a Stephan Martiniere fan I am. Here is his latest for us, it's the third book in Karl Schroeder's Vigra series, Pirate Sun. (The first two being Sun of Suns and Queen of Candesce) Stephan generously saved this series of progressions. More than any other illustrator, I'd love to watch him at a demo -- even seeing these shots his process is still boggling .

I asked Karl to say a few words about Stephan:

Stephan Martiniere brings the eye of a classically trained painter to digital art, with sometimes astonishing and always beautiful results. I've admired his work for years, so I was thrilled when I heard that he would be doing some of my covers--initially, the cover for Lady of Mazes. This piece is simultaneously spiritual and concrete; it looks like a piece of abstract art but in fact accurately represents a scene from the book. This ability to satisfy the particulars of a contract while taking a piece in an unforeseen and wonderful direction is a hallmark of Martiniere's work.

For the Virga books, his images again seem abstract, but are in fact accurate to my vision of specific scenes from the books. It's as if he's taken a snapshot, but rather than an image of light and shadow, his camera captures a moment of perception, with all its subjectivity and emotion. I love his work, and couldn't be happier with the ways he's brought my stories to life.
Stephan's latest art book, QuantumScapes, shows a progression of Variable Star (also the cover to Quantum) along with his book, movie, and gaming work.

Here is a quick interview with him that I posted a while ago.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Amazing Visions Exhibit

For those in, or traveling to, the Northwest: Roq la Rue Gallery in Seattle will host an exhibit of fantasy and science fiction artwork throughout April. The line up looks top notch. If I were in the area, I'd be sure not to miss it.

April 13th 2007 - "Amazing Visions" group show co-curated by Travis Louie Artists: Matt Wilson, Wayne Barlowe, James Gurney, H.R. Giger, Charles Vess, John Brophy, Terese Neilsen, Kuniko Y Craft, Vincent Di Fate, Vince Natale, Don Maitz, Gregory Manchess, Jeremy Bennett, Brian Despain, Brom, Mark Garro, Stephen Hickman, Chet Zar, James Warhola, Kirk Reinert, Basil Gogos, Dave DeVries, Donato Giancola, Miles Teves, Bob Eggleton, Omar Rayyan, Joe DiVito, Tristan Elwell, Daniel De Santos, Gabe Marquez...and more.

A Sunday Post for Mom

Saturday, March 24, 2007


CG Society announced the winners of their Eon Challenge. You can see multiple place winners for movie trailers, 3D scenes, and illustrations for a theoretical movie based on Greg Bear's Eon. Some very impressive work there, well worth checking out.

Friday, March 23, 2007

MicroVisions 2

Last year Dan Dos Santos and I asked a group of artists to dedicate their time and talent to help raise money for the Society's student scholarship fund. Each artist created a miniature painting, 5x7, that was exhibited at the Society for a month and then auctioned on eBay. All of the proceeds went to the scholarship fund. That auction raised $5,700.00 for art students. We are very excited to announce this year's participants:

Patrick Arrasmith
Tristan Elwell
Eric Fortune
Donato Giancola
Rebecca Guay
John Harris
Steve Hickman
Bruce Jensen
Tom Kidd
Todd Lockwood
Red Nose Studio
Dave Seeley
Ashley Wood

The paintings will be on display in June and, once again, auctioned on eBay. I'll update this site as the paintings come in and the auction draws near.

Last year's auction. Huge thanks to Julie Bell, Bob Eggleton, Boris Vallejo, Greg Manchess, Dan Dos Santos, Vincent Di Fate, Lars Grant-West, Stephan Martiniere, Jon Foster, Adam Rex, John Jude Palencar, and Scott Fischer for participating.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Moore College Visit

A group of students from Moore College of Art and Design stopped by Tor for a quick talk. A nice bunch with good questions. I wish them all the best of luck in their studies and their careers.

(As you can see, I made myself at home in our conference room, making it resemble my office in a frightening way.)

David Grove, Hall of Famer

I've been meaning to show off David Grove's cover and drawings for Gene Wolfe's Pirate Freedom for a while...And now, I just learned that David will be inducted into the Illustrators' Hall of Fame this summer. I couldn't be more thrilled for David. He is an amazing artist and this honor is well deserved. I come into work each day with one of his drawings on my wall and it makes me smile every morning. I love how abstract and spontaneous he can be within the bounds of realism -- he can tell a story without ever giving too much of it away.

Pirate Freedom
will feature about 20 drawings at the chapter breaks and will be out in November.

Gene Wolfe is Sexy says Jeremy Lassen. He gave us some nice kudos on the re-design of the New Sun books. It’s especially gratifying since I am often very jealous of the Night Shade covers.

Thanks go out to Jamie for the design work.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

At LunaCon

You know, there really is more to the job than hanging out with artists but it just so happens that there has been a lot of hang time lately.

Lunacon was loads of fun. Dave Seeley did a great job as Guest of Honor. He was on panels day and night - slide shows of his work, progressions of paintings, industry info, prop making, you name it. He also had a massive exhibit in the show -- very impressive. Dave was instrumental in setting up the "studio" that hosted a number of planned and unplanned demos which seemed popular.

All the art programming I saw was well attended. I must say, Lunacon treats the artists right. I think last year's World Con had three or four programs items for artists over the entire four days - Lunacon had multiple tracks of art programming all day long, all weekend long.

Two of my favorite paintings in the exhibit sold -- the portrait that Donato had started at Art Out Loud and Dan Dos Santos' Spirits that Walk in Shadow. (Someone remind me to get a raise so I can buy more art.)

I got to meet a bunch of the crowd. Shout-outs to Shay, Brendan, and Ben. (Sorry if I've missed anyone.) I realize I've met some of you at Art Out Loud but my mind tends to be mush by the time we get to those demos. It was great spending real time talking.

Some random shots. (I'll leave out the wheelbarrow racing to protect the ridiculous.)

LEFT TO RIGHT, TOP TO BOTTOM: Dave Seeley and Dan Dos Santos, Donato, Bob Eggleton, Dan Dos, Shay Casey, Brendan Keough, Arkady Roytman, Dave Palumbo, Rebecca Guay.

Next up, some actual book covers, I promise.

Thursday, March 15, 2007


The artist line-up at LunaCon promises to be pretty awesome - rivaling most World Cons. I’m on two panels, listed below. (Frankly, the second panel is the only interesting thing left to say about the first panel but, we’ll see how we do.) Otherwise, I’ll be in the art studio or the bar. Stop by and say hi.

Pixel and Paint
Saturday March 17th 5:00 - 6:00 Room: Elija Budd
What is the impact of the digital revolution on genre art? Come hear a panel of artists, and directors talk about what has transpired, and
speculate about the future. What were the predictions, what is the reality? Has it been for better or for worse? Who benfits most as digital makes further gains in the cover illustration space?
Participants: Joseph Bellofatto, Dan Dos Santos, Jon Foster, Irene Gallo, Dave Seeley

Virtual Studios
Sunday, March 18th 11:00 - 12:00
Room: Birch
Join top professional artists discussing the "virtual studio" where they share work in progress for constructive criticism and collaborate in an open exchange of ideas. These studios represent a significant evolution in the way artists work as a result of the ubiquitous www. While the virtual studio harkens back to shared real studios, these lists take on a life of their own - there are significant differences in these virtual
manifestations which creates some new dynamics. They can be invaluable, get out of control, and/or implode.
Participants: Dan Dos Santos, Jon Foster, Irene Gallo, Donato Giancola, Dave Seeley.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

David Bowers Art Book

David Bowers will have an art book published in May, David Michael Bowers: The Evolution of an Artist. Tor has been privileged to have David's work on a number of our covers, one of my favorites being painting seen here for Ramsey Campbell’s The Darkest Part of the Woods.

“After being inspired by current artists, I finally realized that the leading artists were receiving much of their inspiration from painters of the past. This realization led me to intensify my studies of art history and the cultures that produced them.” — David Bowers, from the introduction.

Society Sequential Opening

I wrote this out about a month ago and never got to posting it. The exhibit is over but I loved the two medal winners so, although ancient history in blog terms,....

About a month and half ago I went to the Society’s annual Sequential opening. I had a great time, and stayed way to late, talking to various peoples. I was a juror for this exhibit this year and have to admit that the parameters for this category are poorly defined by the Society and not enough is done to promote it to the creatives most involved in sequential work. That said, there was a lot of great work to look at. I was particularly excited by two of the medal winners.

The gold medal went to the animated commercial for United Airlines titled “Dragon” and it is just fantastic. To make something so sweet and effecting out of a hardcore advertising job is not easy. The animation made the rounds on many blogs last year, but if you haven’t seen it, check it out here, along with a short “making of” clip.

A silver medal went to Michael Sloan for his short story, The Heresy of Professor Nimbus,that “tells how Nimbus confronts a world that blindly chooses myth over scientific fact.” The story is told without words and yet by the end you would have swear to have experienced moving, talking pictures. I saw this book early on in the judging process and was crossing my fingers all day that it would make it to the medal debates -- and thrilled to see it honored at the end of the day.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Greg Manchess: Step by Step

Greg Manchess just finished a series of paintings for a non-fiction children’s book, Magallen’s World, due out in July. (Look carefully and you’ll see that the role of Magallen was played by Donato Giancola.) Here is a step-by-step of the scene where Magallen forces the native Filipinos to burn their religious artifacts. Followed by “Navigating the Straits”, “Firing the Cannons”, and a detail progress of Magallen’s comeuppance. Currently, Greg is at work on the sequel to S. M. Stirling's The Sky People for Tor.

"This rare type of book assignment is especially engaging for me. I like to try to combine historical fact with a grand sense of adventure. History is extremely exciting and I take it as an honorable task to excite kids to appreciate it.

I painted 10 pieces for the book in 5 weeks. I planned it so that every piece would be fun for me to paint. By the time I had gotten to each of the finishes, I saw each one so clearly in my mind that I was able to simply fill it in. I don’t start a piece until I know eactly where I’m going with it. The experimentation is all in the concept stages."
-- Greg Manchess

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Donato Giancola SI Opening

Just another name dropping post:

Donato’s Society of Illustrators opening (aka SF Hang-out Night) was a blast. Here are some random shots. Many more wonderful people were there but my camera missed them...or caught them blurry and bleary-eyed. A few people introduced themselves to me as Art Department readers and mentioned that they found out about the party here. Thanks for reading and thanks for coming out. NY has a pretty tight SF art community, hopefully we’ll see you at more events.

Greg Manchess, Kinuko Craft, and Donato Ginacola / Chris McGrath and Dan Dos Santos / Rebecca Guay, me, and Julie Bell / Boris Vallejo and Dan Dos Santos

Michael Kaluta / Mark Korsak / Patrick Arrasmith / Bruce Jensen


Stainless Steel Droopings profiles Raymond Swanland. (And they happen to feature a number of Tor covers.)

Laura Resnick's five part series on cover art is well worth reading.
Via SF Signal