Two shows this Saturday 10/29/11

I have two gallery shows coming up this Saturday evening. If you're in or near Chicago and can attend either one it would be great to see you there.

The first show of the evening kicks off at 6:30 PM at The First Annual Dark Art Exhibiton, Maleficium.

I will be at Maleficium from 6:30 until about 8:30. I will be showing two new pieces that I haven't posted online yet. The illustrations are from a children's story I'm currently writing. Click on the link above for more info.

The next show up is Things That Go Bump In The Night at Gallery Provocateur. This show goes from 8PM to 12Am.

I'll be at Gallery Provocateur from 9PM to until 11 or 12. Click the link above for more info.

This guy and several other illustrations will be on display (and for sale) at Gallery Provocateur.
Goblin Hammer 8x10 framed and signed.

Both galleries are encouraging people to come out in costume.

See you there!


Long overdue posting

Hey Gang,

If anyone is still checking in on this blog I apologize for the lack of posting. It's been a busy couple of months but I'm finally getting caught up. I can't post any of the professional stuff I've been working on but I should have some fun new projects to announce very soon. Most recently I've just wrapped some more work for New Holland Brewing and I can't wait until the product is on the shelves and I can show you what I've been up to.

This coming week my wife and I are heading to New York so she can do some modeling and I can visit various children's book publishers and the New York Comicon. I'll be dropping off samples the old fashion way and touring the city at the same time. Cross your fingers, I'm hoping to find my first publisher.

In just a couple of weeks I'll have some of my paintings in two galleries here in Chicago. Both of the galleries are having a Halloween theme and have asked me to participate.

I'm very excited about these shows. They're my first gallery shows ever and both of the galleries sought me out. The only downside to this great thing is that both shows are on the same night and the galleries about an hour apart. I will try to split my time evenly between them but I have a feeling by the end of the night my brain will be fried like an egg.

The first show of the evening will be at Kosar Effects Studio and Gallery starting at 6:30 in Westmont, IL (a Chicago suburb). I'll be there at the opening and hang around for an hour or two. I'll have two smaller paintings in this show.

Next up, I will have seven paintings hanging up at Gallery Provocateur on October 29th. The show starts at 8PM but I think I won't be there until about 9 or 9:30.

More info to come soon and I'll have plenty of art post in the weeks to come. For the time being, I give you a little sketch that turned into a painting of Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh. I've been experimenting with this older style of illustration and drawing characters from Winnie the Pooh is a fun way to test the waters.



Some sketches

I realized I hadn't posted anything here for a few weeks so here are a couple of sketches to hold you over. I'm working on designs for a new project, a couple of small commissions and I'm spending a lot of time researching publishers. I'm hoping to get some more art up here on the blog soon.




I just realized I haven't posted any of the preliminary work I did for the last project. These two pieces were style tests I did and sent off to New Holland to show them a couple of different methods I was playing around with. They (obviously) picked the top one.

Watercolor on watercolor paper

Brown pencil on paper and Photoshop color/textures



Hatter Days

I can finally do a little show and tell for the work I did at New Holland Brewing. I illustrated 4 Mad Hatters to go along with 4 seasonal beers based off of the Mad Hatter IPA from New Holland.
All of the illustrations were painted in watercolor and then my art director and graphic designer added the text and some age to the label. I'm really happy with how they came out and can't wait to see them on the actual bottles.
New Holland is only brewing one big batch of each of these beers so I'm not sure what the availability of the beer will be. You might have to talk to your local liquor store into ordering some of these. I believe they'll be out at 22oz bottles first.

On June 11th I'll be attending Hatter Days: Mad Hatter Birthday Bash at the New Holland Pub in Holland, MI. I'll be signing posters and doing a little sketching from 8-10 PM and then hanging around afterward to try out the beer.
More info can be found here: http://newhollandbrew.com/blog/featured/mad-hatter-birthday-bash/



Hey gang,

I recently picked up The Complete Winnie the Pooh and was immediately inspired to do this piece.

This piece and many more are available over in my Etsy shop. Spread the word http://www.etsy.com/people/KyleBice



Peter Pan

My take on Peter Pan.

Ink, watercolor and gouache on watercolor paper.



An update and some pears

I'm busy working away at some commissions right now and won't have a whole lot of time to update the blog over the next couple of weeks. I will try my best though.

Coming up in June I'll be attending a party thrown by New Holland Brewing for the release of their seasonal Mad Hatter beers that I did the illustrations for. The tentative date for the party here in Chicago is June 11th. I'll be signing posters and sketching.

Soon after that I'll be heading over to Ft. Wayne, IN for Summit City Comicon on June 18th to sell prints, paint and sketch.

Here is a quick little watercolor piece I did the other day. I was trying out some new paper and slightly looser style of painting. It's available in my Etsy store if anyone is interested.



Chimps for charity

A friend of mine is organizing an art auction to benefit a private elementary school that focuses on the arts. I wanted to donate a few pieces but I ran out of time in between projects. Last night while at my local drink and draw I cranked out this little chimp sketch. I was pretty happy with it and thought it might sell at the auction so I handed it over.

If you're in Chicago check out the auction on April 30th https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=206803266013558

This piece and many more by dozens of other local artists will be available.



Imagining the Fantastic (day 2)

Day 2:

The day started off full of rainy weather. I discovered right away that I needed to replace my windshield wiper or might end up running over some poor student. Thankfully there was an auto part store down the block from me. Exciting stuff so far, huh?

Ok, onto the party. I made my way back to campus via downtown Mt. Pleasant. As I was driving through downtown, on my quest for some decent coffee, I came across a used bookstore. With a little time to kill before the first lecture of the day I stopped in and went straight to the kids section. I picked up two Spiderwick books for real cheap and got a suggestion from the clerk about where to find some good coffee. Turns out downtown Mt.Pleasant doesn't have good coffee, you have to go to the campus.

I swung by the local hot spot for caffeinated beverages and then walked over the building I needed to be in. The whole lecture had moved into a ball room so they could serve us lunch later on in the day.

I got in with a few minutes to spare, found a decent seat and got out my art supplies. I sketched for the first hour of lectures which was a blend of a recap from the day before for the newcomers and brief talk about what each of the artist think about as home and how that relates to art. Towards the end of this lecture I noticed that a table had been set up with some merchandise. I had a few bucks left from the previous day and had been hoping to by something else by Charles Vess. I was in luck! They had a few of his books left.

Shortly after I bought the book lunch was served. During lunch a big storm blew into Mt. Pleasant. I checked the forecast for the rest of the day and decided it would be in my best interest to get on the road before dark.

I made a circuit of the room, got a few more signatures, shook hands and said my goodbyes. I packed up the car and took off for me next stop, New Holland Brewing in Holland Michigan. Holland is just two hours down the road on my way back to Chicago. I had to stop in to deliver some paintings and pick up some hand-me-down art magazines from the art director I had worked with at New Holland.

It was a pretty easy drive. Holland Michigan is nice looking town and the pub is located in a swanky looking part of downtown. I hadn't eaten much during the lunch in Mt. Pleasant so I would be hungry enough to sample New Holland's menu. I order a Poet Oatmeal Stout and a BBQ chicken pizza. It was heaven. It was really hard to say no to more and get back on the road.

The rest of the trip was pretty easy. I made it back to Chicago just in time to meet my Wife and my brother and sister-in-law for b-day dinner celebration.

It was a fantastic weekend! I'm still at a loss for words on how I felt about meeting these artists.

Below is a snapshot of each of the signatures I collected.

And then, my favorite New Holland beer...The Poet.

Thank you to all of the people who helped me get over to MI for the weekend. It was a once in a lifetime event that I'm glad I didn't miss. I learned a lot and I'm looking forward to seeing how this all influences me in the immediate future.



Imagining the Fantastic! (day1)

About a week ago I noticed on Facebook that there was going to be an event, within easy driving distance of Chicago, that would feature some of the biggest names in children's picture books and fantasy art. Dr. Ari Berk , Brian and Wendi Froud, Tony DiTerlizzi and Charles Vess were coming to Mt. Pleasant, MI to give a free lecture and do a Q&A with the public.

After a 4 1/2 hr drive I arrived in Mt. Pleasant, found the campus where the talk was being given and after much wandering, found a parking lot within walking distance of the auditorium.

The auditorium itself was smaller than I expected but I was pleased that the whole event would be more intimate. Each artist gave a brief 30-45min talk with slide show of some of their most famous pieces and some of the process behind them.
Tony DiTerlizzi gave a comedic, well thought out talk that was somewhere between a pitch to a publisher and walk down memory lane. It was pretty amusing.
The event lasted until about 6:30 and then all of the artists wandered into a small gallery space to sign books, prints, dvds, and even a t-shirt or two.
A friend from Chicago had brought her camera and was kind enough to snap a few pics of me with each of the guests.

Tony DiTerlizzi, who was super nice with his time not only to take a photo with me but also to look at my portfolio and give me some great advice about the biz.

Me and Charles Vess. A super nice southerner full of jokes and smiles.
And then there's this guy. I never thought I'd meet the legendary Brian Froud but here I am shoulder to shoulder. Brian is a stereotypical Englishman from the country. He's a bit on the quiet side but once he gets talking he mumbles, shuffles, smiles and eventually becomes quite animated (when talking about Faeries).
I somehow managed to miss getting a picture with Wendi Froud but I did talk to her briefly and like all of the other guests, she was a real pleasure to meet.

It was an honor to meet all of these icons. Day 2 starts soon. I'll be back with more.

*Expect edits. I've had little sleep and am pumped up on coffee until this weekend is over with.



Color study

A wee little color study for a larger painting.

It's up for sale in my Etsy shop if you're interested http://www.etsy.com/listing/71569342/rooster



A week off....kinda

I'm back. I had to take a little time off after C2E2 to get caught up on freelance, clean my studio and get settled back into a normal life.

I also took the time to open an Etsy shop for all of these little paintings I've been doing lately. Please, take a few minutes to check it out, recommend it to a friend(s) or feel free to buy something. I'll be updating it on a fairly regular basis.


Starting this week I'll be getting back to more of the fantasy and children's book art that I was doing before.

I bought some new tinted watercolor paper to try out so I did this little guy the other night. I guess you could call him a Bulldogicorn.

Be on the lookout at the beginning of May for some of my art work appearing on some taps and bottles from New Holland Brewery. Once the project is officially launched I'll let you know exactly what I did and post links for everyone to see.



C2E2 Recap

Hey Folks,

I've been a bit off of my new schedule of painting because of The Chicago Comics and Entertainment Expo (C2E2 for short).
I thought I'd give you guys a mini recap with some photos and art.

Day 1: I was up early and out the door with coffee and snacks. As I was driving downtown the sun was coming up over a line of houses, creating a gorgeous skyline to drive next to. I pulled over real quick and snapped a photo. I was feeling pretty electric with pre-show jitters and excitement.

After I got into the show and set up my table, arranged my supplies and downed the rest of my coffee, I decide it was a good time to take a quick stroll to get the lay of the land. I found a balcony area where you could see almost the entire show floor. This was about 20 minuted before they opened up to the public.

Doors have opened and I'm ready to roll!

I decide to warm up and set the pace. I knock out a Darkseid sketch in watercolor. I notice right away that people seem to enjoy watching me paint. I finished this up and leave it on the table as bait.
A guy walks by soon after and asks me to put it on hold so he can come back and buy it later. We're off to a good start!

The rest of Friday was a bit slow but I sketched a few commissions and then completely forgot to take a photo before the customers walked off with the art.

Saturday was insanely busy and I managed to only get a couple of photos in between a bunch of commissions, regular sales and various chat breaks with an assortment of new and old friends
who stopped by the table.

During a slow moment I made a bet with one of my table mates that I could probably get a crowd if I painted a Yoda sketch. I did this sketch and had a nice little group of about 20 people watching me while I did it. The sketch sold quickly.

Knowing that post festivities were going to make me pretty tired the next day I went ahead and cranked out one more sketch before leaving. I was hoping to have something fresh to show people first thing in the morning on Sunday.

I painted this little guy. I think this was my favorite sketch of the weekend and it was a hard one to let go of but I figured I could always recreate it in the studio if I really wanted to.

Sunday morning was a little rough and mercifully slow. The show picked up speed after lunch and I was busy selling prints and doing more sketches. I managed to finally get out from behind my table for about an hour and walk around Artist Alley to see what else was going on. I bought a few sketchbooks and a couple of drawings and then was back to the table to wrap up the rest of the show.

All in all it was a pretty good weekend. Many more highs than lows. These big shows are nerve wracking and can end up costing quite bit but I had fun and made enough to make it all worth while.
I met a lot cool people, made some new friends and handed out a ton of business cards.

Time to start gearing up for the next show but first I'll be getting back to painting more of the fantasy/children's book art.

Thanks for reading!


P.S. My cat Noodles was inspecting the damages to my con poster late Sunday night. I think he approves of the destruction.



Heya folks,

Just a heads up... The Absinthe Faerie, The Owl Wizard, and The Witch are all spoken for.

All of the others are still available and I'm hoping to get 2-3 more done before the show.



C2E2 this weekend!

If you're in or near Chicago this coming weekend you should come by C2E2 and say hi. I'll be at table D-9 in Artist Alley selling my paintings, drawings and prints. I still have enough time and space left to do one or two more commissions. http://www.c2e2.com/

I'll be selling all of my recent paintings as well.




Absinthe Faerie

Just a quick watercolor sketch of an Absinthe Faerie.

A Faerie

My lovely and very observant wife has noticed on more than one occasion that I tend to draw more men then women. By that, she means about 95% of the time I draw men or at least male characters from a variety of species. She recently brought it up again and I felt it was time to make a change.
This is my first real attempt at drawing a faerie and my first real attempt at painting a woman since I graduated college 10 years ago.
I struggled through on this piece but I learned a lot while doing it and I plan on doing several more in the upcoming weeks.

Thanks for bearing with me while I relearn things I've forgotten over the past ten years. I'm trying to improve every day. Also, thanks for the nice comments and e-mails that have been sent my way. It's always nice to hear from people when they like something I'm doing.



Witch Cauldron

She couldn't find her broom so she just jumped into the cauldron and off she went.


A Sad Ogre

This started out as a pretty funny picture but as I progressed in the drawing stage and I accidentally drew a sad face on this guy. Once it was there the painting took on a life of it's own.

Hope you guys like it.



Owl Wizard update

The owl wizard now prefers to be known as the Wizard Ugla.

I added a little more paint and teeny tiny bit of photoshop to help fix the saturation and brightness of certain areas.

Hope you guys like. I have a few more lined up.


Wizard Owl

Getting into watercolor lately and I can't seem to get away from magic/fantasy stuff.

I'm thinking about doing some children's book work if I can find it.




If you're in Chicago between March 18-20th, stop by C2E2 and say hi. I'll be at table D-9 in artist alley.

C2E2 is just a couple of weeks away and I'm putting the finishing touches on a few different pieces. I'm excited for the show. It looks like it's going to blow last year out of the water. There are tons of great comic and media guests.

See ya there,


Troll Dad updated

I added a few more details, evened up some of the values and added another wash over the figure. It feels done to me now.




I woke up the other day with an idea for children's book. It's a story about a family of trolls. I don't want to give anything else away except that the picture below is frustrated dad, pondering what to do about his daughter.

I started this is a sketch and never really meant for it to become a full blown painting but I was having so much fun working on this...well, I couldn't stop. I have a few more planned for this theme and style.
I think I've had more fun working on this than any piece over the last year. I might just be moving away from the comic and storyboard stuff for awhile to see where this style will take me.



A work in progress - Constantine

I'm gearing up for C2E2 and I needed to come up with a new promo image for the C2E2 website and my artist alley table. So far, this what I came up with. I'm getting close to being done with it. A few more tweaks on the inks and then it's off to color city. I'll be posting the colored version pretty soon.

John Constantine from DC's Hellblazer

Hellblazer © DC comics



Catching up


I've been absent for a bit. The holidays and random projects have kept me from posting but I'm back and I should have plenty of things to post for the foreseeable future.

I'm getting ready C2E2 again and I'm trying produce all new stuff for the show this year.

First up:

I was commissioned by a friend to do 4 drawings of some characters for a RPG she plays. They were all done separately for different people but I wanted to be able to show them in the same setting so I tied the pieces together with a common background. It was fun to do and I'm looking forward to working on some more game stuff soon.

This next guy is a little preview shot from a webcomic I'm developing. I'll more info on this soon.

More to come...