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Tuesday, August 9, 2016


Apparently it is #INTERNATIONALBOOKLOVERSDAY! Who knew? So I thought it might be fun to show you a few books that have helped shape my career as an artist. For those of you who know me, you know that my wonderful wife, Andy, has allowed me to build a small studio in the back of our apartment. It keeps growing.... The best part of this is my reference library! Here are a few selections that have helped me along the way! Take a look! Then let me know what you think!

"Kingdom Come" by Mark Waid and Alex Ross. Not a single book has had an impact on my life as this one. This is the book that made me want to be a real artist. Not only are the illustrations of Alex Ross absolutely mind-blowing, it takes the ideas of aging superheros and their children, then tackles the generational problem of superheroes and power that so few books have been able to address. This is a must read for any comic fan.

"Schulz And Peanuts" by David Michaelis.  I was never a Peanuts fan. Sure I would watch the Christmas special every year, but I never connected with what was going on in the comic strip. It was too boring and too old-fashioned, even for me. To be fair to this book, like many biographies the Schulz family was not happy with this book. Still, reading this gave a whole new perspective on Charles Schulz and the generation that he helped shape. I have not been able to look at that comic strip the way same since I picked up this book. It helped me see how his personal life shaped his work. Still a great read!

 "Bill Peet: An Autobiography" by Bill Peet. I first read this at thirteen years old. My school librarian lent this to for a weekend. I read it in a single night, a rare feat for a student like me. It was another twenty years before I held this book again. Still, it always stuck with me. I think I was drawn to his style. It was of a different era, and his story was relate-able and honest. I guess that is why I had to buy a copy a few years ago. Then again after I gave one to my godson who for some reason wants to be an artist.
 "Creative Illustration" By Andrew Loomis. I love old school magazines and advertising. To me, there is no better example of America's contribution to the arts as this form of work! This book has had several editions and print runs. Amazon is now carrying the newest version of Loomis's many instructional books. His books are an amazing way of looking and working. Just don't look for much racial diversity, it is of a different time period.

 "Illustration." This magazine is one of the finest publications in the art world today! I don't think you will find a better reference source for illustrated works from the American golden age of Illustration. The articles, photos, and reference material are second to none. It is worth every penny! This publication has shown me art and artists that I would have not ever have found on my own!