Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Episode 71--The Doldrums...

In this weeks' episode Socar, Drew, and Jeremy discuss "the doldrums"--those occasional periods of inactivity in the studio when no fresh contract work appears on the schedule. What to do??
Other topics include LinkedIn and Drew's experiences at the Illustration Master Class.

We hope you enjoy!

Subscribe now on iTunes or be found adrift on deathly quiet seas...with nought but Socar playing the xylophone to keep you entertained...

Other great podcasts can be found on the Visual Artist Podcast Network!

The Illustration Master Class!
Drew Baker's Blog!
Art Order Ning Group
Mike Burns

What were your experiences at the Illustration Master Class, you lucky few?
How has a site like LinkedIn been of service to you?
Are you in the doldrums right now? What are you doing with your time?
Any ideas for future show topics? Post them here!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Episode 70-The ASFA Wants You!

In this week's episode, Jeremy sits down to talk with Mitchell Bentley, the current president of the Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Artists.

In the interview, we learn about this non-profit educational organization, its history, and its goals for the future.
The ASFA is revitalizing the whole organization and is preparing to unleash many exciting programs for the benefit of current and future members as well as our entire community of science fiction and fantasy artists.
We hope you enjoy the interview and will seek to learn more about it.
The ASFA is in need of passionate members and volunteers as well.
Now is a great opportunity to join in the fun and help mold the organization for the future.

Be sure to subscribe to the Ninja Mountain Podcast on iTunes or the philistines who hate fantasy art will have won!

Additional information about the ASFA can be found at the organization's website.

The Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Artists


Don't forget to check out other most excellent podcasts on the Visual Artist Podcast Network!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Episode 69-Another lion of illustration has passed...

In this week's episode Patrick, Socar, and Jeremy take some time to remember Al Williamson--legendary cartoonist and inker.

The conversation later moves onto the topic of choice of medium and whether more time spent in the studio necessarily makes for better work.

We wrap up with a lengthy discussion on some of the additional costs associated with operating a freelance studio and how late payment and ( Heaven forbid) non-payment can hurt our business.
To publishers who don't realize this already---creativity is not the only outlay that studio artists contribute to your projects...

Of course, more finds its way into the weaving path of conversation, but you'll have to tune in to find out.

Make sure to subscribe to the Ninja Mountain Podcast or you may miss out on all the awesomeness! Each episode totally takes like six weeks to prepare!....Seriously! Why are you laughing??

More awesome shows can be found at the Visual Artist Podcast Network!

More about Al Williamson can be found at the following links

The Word Balloon Podcast

Don't hesitate to join in the conversation via the "comments" section of this very blog post, folks! As always, we are seeking your thoughts on these weighty topics.

Friday, June 11, 2010

This week---No podcast, but a great book review!

Because all the Ninjas are too hunkered down under the weight of deadlines this week, we were unable to get a show recording together, but rest assured that we will be back in the saddle every shortly with an all-new episode.

In lieu of a podcast, Jeremy thought he would offer up a review of the latest title to find its way to his book shelf...

Hey there, my fellow Ninjas---

I hope folks won't mind me pointing listeners in the direction of a most excellent book I've recently acquired.

James Gurney is the creator of the ever-popular Dinotopia series of books, and more recently authored an instructional book on realistic illustration entitled, " Imaginative Realism-How To Paint What Doesn't Exist".
For those of you who have not looked at this book, I would like to offer my thoughts and high praise for what I feel is one of the best treatments of the subject I have yet seen.

While many instructional books are available on the art of fantasy illustration, few have proven to be as valuable and as well-executed as Mr Gurney's.
The author is a master of his craft and has once again proven his willingness to teach those who aspire to follow in his foot steps.

Mr Gurney's intellectual curiosity and his intense research of the techniques of the master painters and golden age illustrators informs each chapter along with examples of the various principles as seen in his own expansive body of work.

His section on composition is worth the price of admission all on its own.
He introduces terms to the reader such as "spoke-wheeling", " shapewelding", "counterchange", and " repoussoir".
Techniques to help focus one's compositions are offered with an enjoyable and accessible writing style that both beginners and more experienced artists will appreciate.

He offers advice on how to gather and generate reference for your imaginative work to help create verisimilitude when depicting even the most outlandish subject.

The book concludes with overviews of various illustrative disciplines and some excellent step-by-step description of painting procedures.

The bottom line for this reader is that it is fast proving an invaluable resource.
I am already planning to apply many of the concepts found in this book to my own contract work.

I think those who aspire to more realistic modes of illustration should have this book in their studios whether they be digital painters or traditionalists.

Get it from your local library or, if you are into more permanent ownership---
Check it out at your favorite local book store or hit the internet with credit card at the ready.

To learn more about the artist and his work, he maintains a very informative and entertaining blog called, " Gurney Journey". I make sure to head over there every week for a good read and I think you will enjoy it as well.

If you do pick up the book, let us know what you think in the comments section of this very article !

Also, if there is a book you think your fellow Ninjas should check out, don't hesitate to share your suggestions here on the mountain.

Thanks for reading, folks. We'll be back soon with a new podcast episode to share!

New episodes of your favorite illustration podcasts are available at The Visual Artist Podcast Network...

Friday, June 04, 2010

Episode 68--Ideas and ID's...

This week Socar, Patrick, Drew, and Jeremy discuss the synergy of dynamic paradigms...or something like that....
We also discuss the challenge of being original in the genre market along with setting out your shingle.

Make sure to subscribe to the Ninja Mountain Podcast on iTunes or Socar will come to your studio and take your all your lunch money.

You should also head on over to the Visual Artist Podcast Network to check out all the great studio listening!

Many thanks to KiiChan and Brian Bowes, two very talented artists who stepped up with interesting topics of conversation this week!

Here are some fun question for listeners---
What was it like setting up your business?
What is the most egregious job title you've encountered?
What obstacles to originality have you encountered in your work? How did you conquer them?
Fantasy Illustrator or Fantasy Artist---which are you?