Showing posts from 2016

Women Quietly Become a Force in Comic Book World


Since Clark Kent got his first desk job, comic books have been a male-dominated field. Be it the audience, the creators or the titles themselves, the numbers were downright anemic when it came to female involvement. This story first appeared in the October 06, 2015 issue of Variety. Subscribe today. “I can still see things moving forward,” says “Gotham Academy” creator Becky Cloonan. “Being more inclusive allows for more diverse stories to be told, which in turn allows for a larger readership, which feeds back into allowing for more creators. The industry is a lot healthier than it was 10 years ago, and by all accounts it should continue to flourish.” But women, though small in number, have always had a place in the comic book industry, from “Kewpie Doll” illustrator Rose O’Neill to “Wonder Woman” editor Alice Marble. And thanks to the surge in popularity of comic book movies, comics have become more accessible, and have seen their fanboy base grow to include more women. This growt…

Top 10 Sexiest DC Female Comic Book Characters


Dream Cover Show at Krab Jab Gallery

By Lauren Panepinto

I'm really excited to announce a project I've been working on for months now with a great gallery, some fantastic artists (some of whom you'll know as fellow Muddy Colors contributors), and an expert jury of Art Directors. In fact, some of you might have already seen some of the works in progress on social media, but here's my official announcement and some of the final pieces:

I met Julie Baroh (half of Krab Jab Studio) last year at Spectrum Fantastic Art Live, where she volunteered to give a great seminar on how illustrators can break into the gallery world. (She has since posted the material here on Muddy Colors for you: Demystifying the Gallery World Part I, Part II) Since then we've kept in touch and she asked me to guest curate a show for Krab Jab. Now I know I literally wrote the article on Saying Yes, but I was still super intimidated by the idea of curating an entire show. I know I've gained some experience with Every Day Original and…

Building Basic Portfolios

By submitting to shows and getting my work out there, it exposed the portfolio to a wide range of clients. This allowed me to adjust the book with imagery that reflected the market place, but also allowed me to stretch. 

Greg Manchess

Portfolios can be agonizing to figure out. What do clients want to see? We find ourselves thinking, “if they just knew that I can totally do dragons, they’d put me on their cover!”

No, actually, they won’t. The client is like you—they don’t read minds, and they won’t see your potential beyond what’s right in front of them.

I’ve compiled a list of basic standards for different types of portfolios. They are quite simple examples but they are not suggestions. These are necessary basics for what a specific portfolio should contain for an artist to get work.

A portfolio doesn't need to be all things to all possible clients. Clients will be looking for all kinds of topics, so don’t worry that you don’t cover every subject they want. That’s fairly impossible.


by Cory Godbey

Typha is a beautifully animated short that I just recently had the good fortune to stumble across online.

The story is as simple as could be but what really caught my attention is the color. Yes, I like the design and the style just fine but I just found these delirious, vivid colors inescapable.

The values are impeccable and the surreal palette serves to enhance the otherworldliness of this very terrestrial journey. I believe it's well worth three minutes of your time!

Typha, a young girl living in a miniature village is chosen by her people to accomplish the rite of renewal : She has to bring the egg of life to the forest spirit before he passes away.

Credit where credit is due! I first saw this short film because of a tweet from Zac Gorman.

Studio Equipment : Plants

-By Dan dos Santos

Like many artists, I keep a Hepa Grade air filter in my studio that I run periodically if I happen to be painting with a lot of paint thinner or varnish. And although we have discussed air quality and safety before, and will discuss the specifics of that filter in another post, there is an even easier way that you can quickly improve the overall air quality of your studio almost immediately...


Not only will plants convert the CO2 in your stale studio air into Oxygen (providing you with better, more energizing air), but plants can remove an amazing range of toxins from the air as well, including some toxins that even an expensive air filter won't get.

NASA recently conducted a Clean Air Study to identify the best air-filtering indoor plants, and compiled a list of the 18 best plants for improving air quality. All of these plants can be commonly found at local flower shops, or even the Wal-Mart Garden Center.

This infographic (kindly made by …

Using Unconventional Painting Tools

-By Vanessa Lemen

Some folks have shown interest in the tools I use for the mark-making in my paintings, so I thought I'd do a post here about some of them. Besides alternating between bristles and sables for different effects and purposes, there are some lesser known or unconventional painting tools I use for many of the marks that my paintings consist of. In fact, the unconventional tools are what I tend to use more than the more conventional tools, much of the time. I use the word 'unconventional' only because it's a word that we all can relate to as a definition, but I don't necessarily find them to be unconventional in the sense that I find them to be quite practical and expressive, and they suit the purposes I'm after in my own work. I tend to layer several passes of mark-making to build up the depth, leaving one layer of drips and splatters to dry, and then cover it with paint in order to pick out with a spatula or squeegee to reveal portions of the …

WORKING ART: Dancing in Public

by Greg Ruth

Making art is ALWAYS a private event, not matter who is watching. It is however something else entirely for everyone who makes it, especially when we are asked or invited to draw in front of others on purpose. For me, it gives me the palsy. But we live in the era of dvd extras for everything now and there is a heightened expectation to reveal oneself behind the curtain more and more beyond usual realms of academia. Folks really do love to see artists at their craft, and frankly so do I.... however, this is not such a simple and easy thing when seen from the other side of the lens. Drawing and painting in a room full of people, on stage, or via video is not for everyone and everyone has their own combinations of limits and coping mechanisms.  This post is inspired by a conversation I had with Vicki WIlliams after I responded to a request to film my process by essentially cry-dancing panic with some mild hiding under the table with my hands over my ears. Despite the drama, w…