If you are interested in obtaining any one of my prints, a personal drawing for commission, a portrait, or just a simple inquiry, you may contact me at the following email address:
Thank you for stopping by and having a look.
Do you accept commissions? Yes. However, I do reserve the right to either accept or decline the commission.
Why do you only draw with charcoal and carbon and not use strictly graphite? Graphite is far too shiny and reflective to use purely for creating realistic drawings. Shadows should not shine and neither should a person’s eyebrows. While graphite can allow you to draw some amazingly sharp, fine lines, thus creating tremendous detail, I’ve found that pure graphite drawings need to be either sprayed with a fixative that helps eliminate the shine, or your image has to be “fixed” in Photoshop. I’m not a fan of using either one.
Do you paint, or have you ever painted? No. But I would love to learn to paint! In fact, I would say that I have a much greater desire to learn to paint than I do to draw. Drawing is more of a hobby than a passion or strong interest.
What art school did you attend? None. I’ve never had an art instruction class in my life. I had an “art appreciation” class in college that was an “elective” but we never made artwork or undertook artistic endeavors. My degrees are in Biology, Biochemistry, and Medical Technology with a minor in Physics.
If you never went to art school, where did you learn to draw? It’s always been something I’ve been able to do. I would also say it ran in the family. Not that what you see on my blog is equal to what I did in the third grade. Of course not. But I would say that it’s something that has always been there. What I’ve discovered in the past three to four years is that the more you draw, the better you get. The more you observe your subject, the more you understand light reflection, tone, value, contrast, proportion, balance, etc.
Most of what I know, I’ve learned from just experimenting with the materials in front of me or accessible to me. Trying new things as blenders or mixing….things like that. Perhaps the only thing I can attest to, which I did utilize to learn more about my style of drawing was a book by J.D. Hillberry. While the book doesn’t give you step-by-step instructions on how he created his fantastic works, it does provide you the same materials he used. So, I figured; “Hey! If he is at least telling me what he used and some of what he did to render his textures, then why can’t I experiment with the materials he is using to see if I can copy or reproduce the same textures?” And that willingness to try to experiment is how I got started and progressed.
Do you watch or recommend any youtube videos or vlogs? Hmm. Good question. Yes, I have watch many youtube videos about drawing, but I’ve found almost most of them focus on graphite. However, there are many that deal with charcoal but very few who will tell you that the type of paper you use makes all the difference in the world when it comes to rendering realistic values and textures. Do I subscribe to any artistic youtube channels now? Nope, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t any out there that are helpful. I just don’t like searching for videos on a certain topic only to be given clips that do not show what I want. A complete waste of my time, so I just try to discover myself.
Does it matter which brand of charcoal, carbon, or graphite I use? Aren’t they really all the same? Oh HECK NO! This is something I found out the hard way and I’ve only seen about two videos that ever address this issue and you would never know the subject was buried in the video until you watched the entire thing. This question is something that could lead to a HUGE Master Thesis but due to time and space constraints, I’ll make this simple: different brands do not perform the same. Different brands can give different shades, tones, values, textures, contrast, blending qualities, etc.!!! Cheap isn’t always a great way to go but expensive can be very disappointing. If you want to know more about what I like to use and why, you can just email me personally.
Why are your prints so expensive? Based on what, exactly? What makes you think they are expensive? The price I am asking? Let me make a long story short. Despite spending nearly 16 months researching about how to reproduce your artwork in order to make prints for resale, I’ve encountered about every snake-oil salesman/woman I could imagine. What I discovered is that nearly everyone operates on a “standard economy of scale” i.e. a lot of art is reproduced at “bare minimum” or “minimum standard” requirements in order to maximize profits. This leads to poor reproduced artwork, resulting in a compromised quality in the art you are purchasing.
Almost every company who is a high volume printing service operates at the minimum industry standards to achieve good results. Good results are what one might purchase at a national chain arts and crafts store. But I don’t want good “standard” results. I want the best results. And best results for black and white artwork don’t come from using standard OEM monochromatic, K3 ink combinations. Nor do they come from standard RGB files created from professional photography and scanning. That’s why I decided to utilize the technique of piezography for doing all my black and white artwork reproduction. There simply is no comparison.
Despite being told by nearly twenty-one (21) different professional photographers and printers that the new advancements in ink technology for Epson and Canon printer systems, are equal in appearance and quality to those pigments used in piezography, I’ve come to the conclusion that they either need glasses, or they are drinking from the same bottle. From the samples I’ve seen and had tested, I COMPLETELY DISAGREE!
Piezography utilizes seven different carbon based pigments and requires a much more expensive software system to run and operate. It requires a high level of calibration that is time-consuming. It also requires more sophisticated application heads, since the old pigments were notorious for clogging standard injector heads and ports. In other words, it costs more to have prints printed than a regular high volume monochromatic system.
If you do a little research yourself and take a look at what many companies charge for a standard 11 x 14 giclee print, you’ll see that an artist who is selling their prints for $45 is making a 200% profit in markup alone (in some cases as high as 800% or more). I ain’t even close to that!
Another attribute of piezography that really influenced my decision was the longevity of the pigments versus standard OEM inks. My prints could easily last over 100 years before any significant fading is seen. Placed within museum grade glass or u.v. protective glass and your print could outlast your great, great, great, great great-grandchildren and beyond.
I’ve written enough about this subject and my space is limited. But do yourself a favor and go research piezography for yourself. For black and white printing, you just can’t beat it, despite what so many professionals claim.