Friday, April 23, 2010

At it Again!

Time is slipping out of my grasp it would appear. On the list for today is to check out the Goonies from the library today, paint, draw out the cover for a magazine, do the pencils for the first couple pages of "Wings of Fury" and just generally start to get things more in order for my move which basically starts happening in two days.

Craziness. To top it all off, I was in no mood to work on any of the projects that I am supposed to work on today and started ripping into this bad boy. Though now that I think of it, I think I am going to do a black and white version for the cover of this Poetry and art journal that I am supposed to do the cover for.

What do you think? I think it would make an excellent black and white image. I need to come up with some stuff for this black and white publication. Mostly I work in color. Not too many pen and ink drawings this day that are complete pieces. But I think this and a couple sketches for pieces that were similar would lend themselves well. I'll keep you posted as to what I end up doing.

On a completely different note, my cat was a total love bug today. It really helps to have a creature to take your mind off of the stress. Thought I'd show you just how big a fan of Cezanne he is.

Jasper really prefers planes that don't line up from one side of paintings to the other. I think it's because his eyes are so shifty, but whatever it is, at least we dig some of the same art.

Anyhow, I'll have some more serious posts soon. Hopefully I don't continue to procrastinate.
Til next time.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


Ladies and gentlemen, can I get a drum roll please. We have made it to 200 posts on the Keep on Trucking, Man and his beer van blog. It has been a little over three years now and the blog is doing well. There are a lot of new followers this year and I thank you profusely for your support and for those of you who have been reading from the start, I know who you are, I love you, and thank you with a big, warm, fuzzy Mike-type hug on top.

Ok. The blubbering is coming to an end. I have said that along with the 200th post comes a limited edition print. I am fairly new to printing, actually brand new to printmaking so the edition is a little more limited than I had anticipated, however, I have two prints that look like this bad boy below. The deal is this: They are free! How do you get one of the two? Leave a comment by midnight on Friday night and I will draw names from a hat to see who gets one. You will have to of course leave your email address in the comment so that I can get your address to send your print out, and I promise that I will not be flooding you with any mailing lists or anything like that. Just a print!

Here tis:

Also in celebration of 200, I've made two small paintings, which are both for sale at $40 each. Drop me a line at mike @ lewis acrylics dot com if you are interested in one of these.

This one is titled "Jamming in the House". It comes from an older series that I thought would be nice to visit for my bash.

This piece is titled "Old Skool Song" and is also from a different old skool series, that I thought would be good to revisit for the 200 celebration. Hope you like these two. They are both 5" X 7" and a deal at twice the price. Just email me or send a pay pal payment to the same address and I'll send you a sweet little old skool Lewis Acrylics piece.

Coming up we've got some exciting things going on. I have been invited to be in the 25th anniversary of "The Goonies", a show at Lunar Boy Gallery. I'm very excited for two reasons. 1.) It's the Goonies, need I say more, and 2.) I get to work with Deborah Starr of Lunar Boy again. She is just such a pleasure to work with. If you don't know the gallery, you should really check it out.

Next up, I'm working on a movie poster, a feature for OVS Magazine, and last but not least, I am getting ready to go to grad school. It is now just two months away. I am certain that this will all be amazing. I will be sure to keep you updated on the new work. Thank you for coming back, thank you for following, and please have an awesome night.


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Countdown to 200!

The 200th post to Keep on Trucking is coming up incredibly soon, and in commemoration of a project that I never thought would even last this long, I am creating a special print run. I am making five prints that I will give away to 5 people at random who comment on the 200th post. That is not this post, but I figured I would show you the sketch of the print, because I am excited to give back a little bit and very excited about the drawing in general.

So here's the initial sketch of the print.

Be sure to stop back next week on comment on this upcoming post so you have a chance at being one of the lucky five. And thank you to you all for checking out the blog on a regular basis. It is much appreciated.

Til next time.

Friday, April 9, 2010

The Next Stages of Plumbing

The Plumbing series continued this morning. My walk through the woods on Monday completely changed my position on where I thought roots and trunks belonged. There were so many trees with strange shapes bursting out of the ground. So I've been working at dropping the plane which the trees are coming out of.

Check it out.

I am really digging the color in this piece. I think that this will most likely come back to earth tones, but the greens are providing something good to do some scumbling over.

Second I've started thinking about the different ways to make these pieces more 3-d with the capability of more interaction with the viewer. Here is one of my first attempts.

Basically just a cube, but I'm thinking that I may put the different layers on a swivel so you can line up different shapes of tree piping by turning each piece, sort of like the kids books with three different panels making up a face.

still working. stop back later and see what comes up next.
til then

Thursday, April 8, 2010

The New Mighty Lark Mini Comic

It has been quite a while since I've worked with the Mighty Lark. Shockingly people have noticed that he disappeared. For those who were concerned that they might never see the little bird scrapping with robots again, your concerns can now be alleviated. This morning I roughed out the first full mini comic featuring ML and a bunch of power line eating robots.

The drawings were coming to me easily in the sketch stage, which gives me great hope for the upcoming final drawings. I've also figured out that I will be posting this comic in installments on the Mighty Lark blogspot too. I'm going to give it a couple weeks until I have the first few pages and then begin posting on Wednesdays every week until the Mighty Lark show in September at the Blue Bottle in Seattle. At that show, I will be selling physical copies of the minis.

Here's a couple of drawings so you can get the flavor of what's coming up:

One of the beginning scenes here showing Mighty and a carpet-bagger pigeon. Think the pigeons name is Lenny. I really want the bird interactions in this comic to be reminiscent of the characters in a Damon Runyon short story. Those of you who don't know Damon Runyon. Guys and Dolls was based on the characters and short stories created by Runyon. The books are way better.

I'm really excited about creating this book with a more horizontal format so I can get some big sweeping images in. I think it will really help convey some tension in the book without getting people too on edge. It is just birds and robots after all. We're not talking about going hunting with Dick Cheney.

And here we have ML's ode to MJ.

I love it, so pleased to be able to use this in the book. Hope you like the sketches. I'm looking forward to putting together the final and sharing it with you. That will be over on

Until next time.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The First 2 Successful (?) Prints.

So here we have it. This past week I constructed a printing press with my fiance's father. It is a high quality piece of machinery involving three pieces of 16 X 24 inch plywood, two long 2 X 4's cut up, a piece of maple for a cross piece and a 2 ton car jack. The press, miraculously, is a success. I, I am finding out, am a novice at the art of printmaking. That said, this whole process, has been completely and utterly awesome.

I have been etching into plexi glass plates and making small, 5 X 7 inch, prints. At first the paper was too wet, and I was losing the image to smudging and then I have been etching too hard and making some super huge grooves that are not printing well, but the one spot in the following prints gives me great hope, because it is exactly what I am looking for.

Check out the two semi-successful prints that I made this afternoon:

The print to the left was the first print. I liked how the line came out, but I was looking for a bit more atmospheric shading. So I added a little cross hatch in the second and found that the light cross hatches actually came out clearer than any other aspect of the print. And so, I think I have finally figured out how to obtain the quality in the prints that I am looking for. We will both see tomorrow when I post the results of my findings.

Today, I also took my street scene painting that I have been working on to a new level. It is nearly complete, and very successful thus far. I am extremely pleased with the result. The aim is to finish it by tomorrow so that I can take it to see its buyer.

This may be the first piece that I have ever put together with five people in it. And remarkably, I cam coming to enjoy all five of the figures. And to anyone who is upset that this piece is already spoken for, I would be glad to take a commission on another similar piece, because this has been an immensely interesting and enjoyable project.

Well, that's all I've got for today. I will try to make it back tomorrow with the finish of this street scene and with a higher quality print.

Until next time.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Tree Plumbing

I have lost my internet connection at home for a little while, but have now figured out a schedule using my public library to update Keep On Trucking, which is good because I have a lot to share these days.

I have been working extensively on the plumbing in the trees series. A few hikes in the New Hampshire wilderness as well as a keen interest in the piping around me has honed my focus to a more earth tone approach and less busy pipework. In my observations I have noted that most pipe work is relatively limited. There is not a lot of excess pipe work. Perhaps it is the expense of materials and a matter of flow, but no matter, I have decided to carry out the same sort of structure in the piping in my trees. Trees are very efficient life forms, so I feel I should keep their piping to the point and keeping flow.

The earth tones have also allowed me to focus a little more on form and to keep the pipes feeling as if they belong to the trees. The wild color palette seems to throw the tree off from the pipes. I really don't want this, I want the two to feel fully integrated. Here are my results for the week. Let me know what you think:

I am really pleased with the leaf life structures of the negative space in this piece. The simplicity of the branches has felt good to me as well. However, the pipework may still be a little to complicated. I am still working that out in my head.

I am much more satisfied with the leaf area in this piece. I feel the color really plays well against the drawing and with the overall yellow of the rest of the works' ground.

I have also started working with the pipes and the universe drawings. This is still in the fledgling scale but I anticipate spending most of the summer working on this series anyway, so I am not too concerned with that. I feel that this work will be more complete when the viewer is amidst the elements in the piece. Big plans big plans.

And there you have it. I hope you like it. There is so much work to do, so I wouldn't be surprised to find these posts a little more regular coming soon. I have a lot of small projects that I have put off that I am now finding some momentum for, so be on the lookout.

Until next time.