reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Mel Odom (born September 2, 1950) is an American artist who has created book covers for numerous novels, notably several books by fantasy author Guy Gavriel Kay such as The Fionavar Tapestry trilogy, Tigana, A Song for Arbonne, and The Lions of Al-Rassan. Odom was also the designer of the Gene Marshall collectible fashion doll. He celebrated his 19 years together with his partner Charlie Saputo, whom he married in New York City in July 2013.

Odom was born in Richmond Virginia and grew up in Ahoskie, North Carolina, where his parents nurtured his interests in drawing and in dolls. He majored in fashion illustration at Virginia Commonwealth University and pursued some graduate studies in England before moving to New York City in 1975.

His distinctively elegant Art Deco-like style quickly established him as a successful commercial artist, at first via erotic illustrations for sexually-oriented magazines such as Blueboy, Viva, and Playboy, the last of which named him their "Illustrator of the Year" in 1980. In the same year, he provided the cover art for Edmund White's novel Nocturnes for the King of Naples, which opened his path to a wider audience.

During the 1980s, his work achieved success in many commercial media. He created album covers for CBS Records and book covers for numerous other novels, usually in the genres of fantasy, mystery, or horror. He provided illustrations for the science/science-fiction magazine OMNI and (in 1989) a front cover for Time magazine. He also received professional recognition from his peers, receiving the Society of Illustrators's Gold Medal (Editorial category) in 1982 and a Silver Medal (Book category) in 1987. He has exhibited his work in New York City at the Cooper-Hewitt Museum and the Society of Illustrators.


Mel Odom is an American artist who has created covers for numerous novels, notably for fantasy author Guy Gavriel Kay such as The Fionavar Tapestry trilogy, Tigana, A Song for Arbonne, and The Lions of Al-Rassan. Odom was also the designer of the Gene Marshall fashion doll. He celebrated his 19 years together with his partner Charlie Saputo, whom he married in New York City on July 3, 2013. "In Mel Odom's world the perverse has become at last a candid pleasure...a vision of utopia" Edmund White


Mouth to Mouth or Arrangement, 1979, Blueboy Magazine

Read more... )

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mel_Odom_(artist)

more illustrations )

more covers )

Gene Marshall )

Days of Love: Celebrating LGBT History One Story at a Time by Elisa Rolle
Paperback: 760 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (July 1, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1500563323
ISBN-13: 978-1500563325
CreateSpace Store: https://www.createspace.com/4910282
Amazon (Paperback): http://www.amazon.com/dp/1500563323/?tag=elimyrevandra-20
Amazon (Kindle): http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MZG0VHY/?tag=elimyrevandra-20

Days of Love chronicles more than 700 LGBT couples throughout history, spanning 2000 years from Alexander the Great to the most recent winner of a Lambda Literary Award. Many of the contemporary couples share their stories on how they met and fell in love, as well as photos from when they married or of their families. Included are professional portraits by Robert Giard and Stathis Orphanos, paintings by John Singer Sargent and Giovanni Boldini, and photographs by Frances Benjamin Johnson, Arnold Genthe, and Carl Van Vechten among others. “It's wonderful. Laying it out chronologically is inspired, offering a solid GLBT history. I kept learning things. I love the decision to include couples broken by death. It makes clear how important love is, as well as showing what people have been through. The layout and photos look terrific.” Christopher Bram “I couldn’t resist clicking through every page. I never realized the scope of the book would cover centuries! I know that it will be hugely validating to young, newly-emerging LGBT kids and be reassured that they really can have a secure, respected place in the world as their futures unfold.” Howard Cruse “This international history-and-photo book, featuring 100s of detailed bios of some of the most forward-moving gay persons in history, is sure to be one of those bestsellers that gay folk will enjoy for years to come as reference and research that is filled with facts and fun.” Jack Fritscher
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Edward Nicholas Backes, known to most as Nick Backes, passed peacefully from this life on the afternoon of February 11, 2013, surrounded by his family. He was born on January 2, 1950, to George Medford Backes and Billie Mae Backes. Nick was preceded in death by his mother, Billie Backes; brother, John Kinghorn; and his beloved partner of thirty-five years, Ron Martin. He is survived by sisters, Frances Calaway and Virginia Marchand. (Published in The Oklahoman on March 17, 2013) (P: OK - Let's Talk, 18" x 24" )
"Nick lived for beauty and left a legacy to inspire..." --James Coburn
Professional Artist and Illustrator with extensive experience in publishing, fashion, advertising, television, and retail industries for over 25 years, Nick Backes was known for creating classic, realistic images for a diverse clientele. Accomplished in pencil, pastels, and oil, he was honored in the Society of Illustrators Show in New York City with work in the Society’s Thirty-First Annual of American Illustration. He had also additional experience in theater art.

“I’ve never liked my work,” Backes said. “I don’t think it’s good. I prefer other artists, and like different styles than what I do.” Despite Backes’ personal opinion, for decades the 58-year-old Oklahoma City native had made a career out of creating art for those who see his work in a much different light.  

 
Dreamer, 24" x 18"
Professional Artist and Illustrator with extensive experience in publishing, fashion, advertising, television, and retail industries for over 25 years, Nick Backes was known for creating classic, realistic images for a diverse clientele. Accomplished in pencil, pastels, and oil, he was honored in the Society of Illustrators Show in New York City with work in the Society’s Thirty-First Annual of American Illustration. Nick was preceded in death by his beloved partner of 35 years, Ron Martin.


Read more... )

Source: http://www.nickbackes.com/

Original Interview: http://distinctlyoklahoma.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=299&Itemid=62

Days of Love: Celebrating LGBT History One Story at a Time by Elisa Rolle
Paperback: 760 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (July 1, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1500563323
ISBN-13: 978-1500563325
CreateSpace Store: https://www.createspace.com/4910282
Amazon (Paperback): http://www.amazon.com/dp/1500563323/?tag=elimyrevandra-20
Amazon (Kindle): http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MZG0VHY/?tag=elimyrevandra-20

Days of Love chronicles more than 700 LGBT couples throughout history, spanning 2000 years from Alexander the Great to the most recent winner of a Lambda Literary Award. Many of the contemporary couples share their stories on how they met and fell in love, as well as photos from when they married or of their families. Included are professional portraits by Robert Giard and Stathis Orphanos, paintings by John Singer Sargent and Giovanni Boldini, and photographs by Frances Benjamin Johnson, Arnold Genthe, and Carl Van Vechten among others. “It's wonderful. Laying it out chronologically is inspired, offering a solid GLBT history. I kept learning things. I love the decision to include couples broken by death. It makes clear how important love is, as well as showing what people have been through. The layout and photos look terrific.” Christopher Bram “I couldn’t resist clicking through every page. I never realized the scope of the book would cover centuries! I know that it will be hugely validating to young, newly-emerging LGBT kids and be reassured that they really can have a secure, respected place in the world as their futures unfold.” Howard Cruse “This international history-and-photo book, featuring 100s of detailed bios of some of the most forward-moving gay persons in history, is sure to be one of those bestsellers that gay folk will enjoy for years to come as reference and research that is filled with facts and fun.” Jack Fritscher

More Artists at my website: www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art

More Real Life Romances at my website: www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Real Life Romance
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Today post is very easy for me ;-) I will simply let Paul speak and he will announce the winner for the Uncovered contest. From my side I want only to add that I was immensily pleased to host Paul and his contest in this page, Paul's art is classy and funny, just as I like it.

Hello everyone! This is Paul Richmond and I’m excited to unveil the results of our Uncovered Contest.



For those who joined us during the commercial break, let me re-cap:

A month ago, I stopped by to enlist your help in an important decision – which of my novel cover illustrations should become the next limited-edition print offering in my online store. I asked you to vote on your favorite, which would also put you in the running for some fabulous prizes. Well now it’s time to unveil the results…and the lucky winners!

We had more votes this year than ever before, and it was a close race. The four covers that were in the running are:

four covers ) 

And the winner is…

 
WOKE UP IN A STRANGE PLACE.

Rah! Rah! Cue the confetti and fireworks!
“Woke Up in a Strange Place” is now officially available in my online store at a first-day discounted price of $32.50. Order a print for yourself here: http://paulrichmond.bigcartel.com/product/woke-up-in-a-strange-place-print  

And now for the prize winners:

1st prize – Richard Duncan
Will receive the first print in the series of “Woke Up in a Strange Place,” the corresponding novel courtesy of Dreamspinner Press, and prints of the previous Uncovered winners “The Hired Man” and “Shadows from the Past.”

2nd prize – Monika Krasnorada
Will receive the second print in the series of “Woke Up in a Strange Place” plus a print of “Rainbow Cheesecake” (the official pin-up boy of the Rainbow Awards)

3rd prize – Anke Gabriel
Will receive the third print in the series of “Woke Up in a Strange Place”

Congratulations!!!!! Woo-hoo! And thank you to everyone for participating in this year’s Uncovered Contest! How fun was that?? We MUST do this again.

Oh, and let’s not forget the bonus prize! I included a space on the entry form for you to ask me a question – anything you wanted – so that I could choose my favorite questions to answer in today’s post. Of those whose questions were picked, one would be randomly chosen to receive a signed copy of my book “Cheesecake Boys.” Since I fancy myself a master of suspense (even though I can’t really keep a secret to save my life!), I’m going to answer the questions first and then announce the bonus prize winner at the very end. No skipping ahead!

And I should say, there were hundreds of questions submitted and I had a hard time narrowing them down to a reasonable amount that wouldn’t completely use up all of Ms. Rolle’s server space. You asked some awesome questions, many of which gave me quite a chuckle!

Q: (from Jessica Lee) I see a mixture of bare buttocks, sneak peeks, and underwear clad models displayed in your art. Of the three, which do you find the most appealing to create/include in your designs? I've heard some to say that the imagination is sometimes more fun and sexier than the reveal. Which do you find the most provocative?

A: To me, just a little peek of something we’re not supposed to see is almost sexier than erotic art where absolutely nothing is left to the imagination. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate some of the more overt stuff too, but in my own work, I prefer to keep things a little more on the suggestive side. You’ll notice in a lot of my cover illustrations, I try to sneak in a hint of the figure’s underwear waistband peeking out, as if it’s popping up to say, “Hello, don’t you wish you could see more?”



Q: (from Regina) Hi Paul- has your partner ever modeled for you?

A: Dennis is so handsome and I’d love to paint him all the time but he’s quite a reluctant model. Perhaps I pushed my luck with one too many bizarre pin-up boy pose requests. I can’t imagine why my Jewish honey would find it slightly undignified to pretend that he’s putting a star on top of a Christmas tree while his robe flies open to reveal a pair of skimpy, candy-cane printed undies! I do have a few serious paintings of him, and I plan to do more. I may just have to catch him off guard next time for the reference shot!

The Greatest is Love )

Q: (from Kirsten) Aside from your own work, who are some of your favorite artists and who influences your work?

A: My biggest influence has always been my childhood art teacher, Linda Regula, who put a paintbrush in my hand when I was three and a half years old. We’ve remained great friends and are collaborating on some exciting projects now. Some of my other favorite artists include Melissa Forman, Eric Fortune, Jason Driskill, James Rosenquist, Isabel Samaras, Paul Cadmus, Gilbert & George, Ross Watson, Mark Ryden, James Bidgood, Michael Breyette, John Cameron Mitchell, Mike Ruiz, and David LaChapelle.

Linda Regula and Paul Richmond, in 1984 and 2010 )

Q: (from Kiernan Kelly) What's your secret to getting so many men to drop their drawers for you?

A: Assuming you’re referring to my Cheesecake Boy subjects, the answer is “Just ask!” They have all been quite willing to oblige, even contributing their own ideas about what their wardrobe malfunction scenes should entail.

Photo reference of Jack Mackenroth )

Q: (from Jorgi) How did you get into cover illustration?

A: Puerto Rican author Carlos Vázquez Cruz discovered my painting “Not Just a Closet” and requested to license it for the cover of his novel Dos Centímetros de mar (Two Sea Centimeters) published by Librería Isla in 2008. My introduction to Dreamspinner Press was through my friend Jane Seville, who asked me to illustrate the cover of her wonderful gay thriller novel Zero at the Bone. Dreamspinner was pleased with the way it turned out and have been keeping me really busy ever since, and they are a dream to work with! I’ve also done work for other publishers as well, and at this point, I’ve illustrated over 80 novel covers…and counting!

Paul's first covers ) 

Q: (Cooper West) What was your earliest inspiration, even as a child? Nature? People? Animals? Or...?

A: Divas! I was fascinated by the Snow White story as a child, mostly the character of the wicked queen. She was elegant, bitchy, and willing to do whatever it took to get her way — what could be better? She’s like a cartoon Barbra Streisand! From Snow White, I progressed to the human cartoon Dolly Parton after happening upon “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas” on tv. I was too young to fully grasp the premise, but I liked the idea of living in a big house with Dolly, wearing glamorous clothes, and singing and dancing all the time. Alas, my childhood ambition to become a whore was quickly squelched when I announced my plan to my parents.

 
“Snow White” by Paul Richmond at age 6

Q: (from Joann Finke) If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be and why?

A: I would want to have a little British royalty in my blood so that Dennis and I could witness the royal wedding tomorrow in person! As it is, I’ll be doing my queen’s wave while watching the festivities in bed, sporting tighty whities and bedhead. So undignified!

Q: (from Lloyd Gootee Jr.) Your Cheesecake Boys are reminiscent of the Pin-Up Models of the 40's and 50's. You recently did a series of prints with famous gay celebrities of our time. If you could travel back to the Golden Age of Hollywood, what famous male celebrities would you have wanted to meet and have model for you?

A: Well, Rock Hudson and Cary Grant would certainly be fun to de-pants (for the sake of art, of course!).

“Blast from the Past, Starring Darryl Stephens” )

Q: (from Jerome Stueart) If you had to recast a great novel from the past--American, Canadian, English, European---with gay characters, and illustrate the cover---which novel would you choose? And what would you do with the cover? (Personally I'd like you to redo Treasure Island ---a bunch of hairy bear pirates would be beautiful.... but hey, that's me.... what about you?)

A: “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man” by James Joyce – don’t you think he would look great as a young, blonde, freckled boy from the Midwest?  Actually, I like your idea better. Do you think Mr. Stevenson would mind?

Q: (from Jennifer Swanson) If you could be at an historic event in person to paint it, what event (or person) would you pick?

A: A Marky Mark concert, of course. He was the ultimate Cheesecake Boy, after all! Ok, I suppose that would be a colossal waste of my time-traveling privileges. Here’s another idea. I’ve always had a fascination with ancient Greek culture. I went to Greece a few years ago with my friend Melissa and got to live out some of my Grecian fantasies. Opa! I would love to have been there to witness (and paint) the first Olympic games.

Q: (from Bobby Phillips II) Do you ever imagine yourself in the scene of your illustrations or are you the observer who is the artistic biographer of gay life?
 
A: If there are figures in the painting, I do usually take reference photos and while I have several friends who are really good sports about it, sometimes I have to use the good-old self-timer on the camera and be my own model. This, of course, results in some bizarre antics in my studio as I set the camera in place and then dive into pose as quickly as possible before it goes off – trying to look as sexy as possible, of course. Sometimes it’s quite a test of one’s acting prowess. Just the other day I had to pretend I was hiking across an Alaskan river trying to dodge a leaping sockeye salmon with my pants falling dangerously low. Try that, James Franco!

Paul ) 

Q: (from Linda Regula) How did school-yard bullying motivate you to become a creative adult?

A: I’m so glad you asked, Linda, because it gives me the perfect excuse to plug our new anti-bullying project! I was definitely a target for bullies as a kid, because of my effeminate mannerisms and artistic nature. Thankfully, I had you to show me how I could turn those frightening, confusing, and painful experiences into works of art. I don’t know what I would have done otherwise. Being an artist gave me a voice, and no bully could take that away. That’s why Linda and I just launched the You Will Rise Project, an online gallery dedicated to giving the victims of bullying a voice through the arts. It provides a multimedia showcase for drawings, paintings, sculptures, videos, poetry, and other creative expressions by people of all ages, representing their experiences with bullies. It’s an exciting project because it empowers people to speak up about what they’re experiencing and share their stories with each other. Check it out and get involved here: www.youwillriseproject.com.



Q: (from Jaime Samms) I have to ask: How much do you _love_ your job? :)

A: You have noooo idea! I am a seriously lucky boy, and I don’t take it for granted. I know that if it weren’t for the support of you and Elisa and everyone reading this, I might be in that accounting job my dad always dreamed of. Of course there would be some corporations with majorly screwed up financial reports because their accountant was busy scrolling through the “Behind the Cover” archives on Elisa Rolle’s journal wondering “What if…”



Weren’t those great questions? This was a blast! And now to go out with a bang, let’s announce the winner of that bonus prize…

Drumroll, please….

Cooper West!!! Yay!!

Thank you again to everyone who took part in the Uncovered contest, and especially to Elisa for being our fabulous hostess and Dreamspinner Press for contributing to the prize offerings. I don’t want the fun to end! Can’t I just take you all home with me?

I suppose I should quit talking soon though and get back to work. I do have quite a few cover illustrations waiting patiently on the shelves beside my easel. Who knows, maybe someday I’ll be asking for your help deciding which of them to “uncover” next!

---
Paul Richmond’s website: http://www.paulrichmondstudio.com
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
It’s not the first time that I feature Sven de Rennes on my LiveJournal, but the last time I did, I noticed an interested for his artwork that I haven’t noticed before: many of my friends, authors, pointed out that the paintings were really short stories themselves, and they wouldn’t mind to have them as covers for their books. And actually Sven is not new to the cover art world, he did many cover for LGBT publishers in France, pity that the books weren’t translated into English or Italian, so I haven’t had the chance to read it.


Cover Art for Une Histoire Simple by Roger Vhere

When I approached Sven to plan this post, I asked him if he was still interested in doing cover art, and he told me “sure!”, so friends, if you have in mind something, and you like Sven’s work, and you want to contact him, he is open to your proposal… yes, yes, I’m a matchmaker, but I do that only in the name of Art and to bring good works on the cover of the books I love.

And now I will let Sven speak for himself!

“I’ve worked as an illustrator under the nom de plume “Sven de Rennes” since March 2002.

Ever since I was a little boy, I thought drawing was a magical power, the way to show others what I imagined or what I had in mind. My goal was to manage to represent all this in the most realistic way possible.

After studying at the art college of Rennes II (Bretagne, France), I became interested in science-fiction and fantasy universes; I was fascinated by the creation or distant worlds, unreal moods, bright cities...

It was in 2002 that I decided to “come out” and took an interest in the gay world. I like playing with erotic situations, sometimes soft, sometimes not so subtle, always trying to incorporate a bit of humour, tenderness and feeling in the bonds between my characters.


Notre cabane, loin du monde

As time passes, my subjects evolve, but I know I want to explore and deepen more and more the backgrounds, lights, staging, and, most of all, the mood.

In any case, I hope my illustrations arouse your imagination, send you dreaming, and let you escape for a while. That’s what they’re here for.

A lot of people ask me how I work. I'll try to take you briefly through some of the secrets of my trade, with an illustration I called "Le Ménestrel" (The minstrel).

Step 1: Sketches

The ideas for my drawings come from everywhere. They can come from my everyday life, from a sight I saw, a photograph I liked on the Net, a friend, someone I meet, or just some daydreaming I fell like putting on paper.

For "Le Ménestrel", I aimed to create a tender, both magical and private universe; some sort of a hijacked medieval tale... I started out with the idea of a cloister, full of life, with green everywhere, its fountain, and also shades and lights playing here and there.

I always take in consideration the context of my pictures, not just the background. I really wanted people to feel the whistling of the wind in the leaves, the soft rustling of the water flowing into the pond. Thus, I didn't hesitate to blend in numerous details, to make the drawing more lively, not forgetting to center the tableau on our two lovebirds and their little courting session.

Step 2: The original drawing

The last sketch done, I now have a precise version of what I want the end result to be. That's when I start the creation of the final drawing. 

Step 2 )

I don't use a tablet and I always work with my own hands on Canson 224g/m² A3 paper, with my pencils, eraser and pens.

Drawing and Laying-out require great focus. The gesture has to be precise yet dynamic, and I willingly confess it is a balance I still have a hard time to find.

Step 3: Colorization

This is it, the original drawing is done and inked up, at last I can scan it and start the numerical colouring, which I do with Adobe Photoshop.

Step 3 )

I already had a clear idea of the colours and the atmosphere I wanted to give this artwork the moment I started the preparatory sketches. There can be a playful side in the colouring, the creation of textures or effects often requires an elaborate strategy as a means to an end. I apply the colours, lightings, shadows and textures, and sculpt the shapes step by step while revelling in the sight of the picture emerging to life under my gaze.

Step 4: Finalization

The artwork is almost done, I've applied all the colours, textures, shading and I've worked the shapes, the only thing left is what I call the "Finishing Touch". This is when I tune the colours to give the illustration a "mood", a coherent set of colours.



For "le Ménestrel", I wanted yellow tones, maybe even golden nuances, in order to find both the spirits of a summer evening and of an old piece of time-faded parchment.

I hope these short explanations brought you some new clues about the way I work. Please do not hesitate to ask questions if you feel like it, I'd be glad to answer them.

Sven”

Here is some example of Sven de Rennes' work as Illustrator

Illustrations )

Visit Sven at his website to see more of his wonderful works:

http://www.svenderennes.com/  

And here is Sven's previous work as cover artist:

Cover Arts )

More Artists at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Since today is Behind the Cover's weekly appointment, I thought this video is right on the matter: it's the video of the session shoot for the cover of "Boy Midflight" by Charlie David, Palari Publishing. From what I understood, it was a collaboration between the publisher and Otter Fashion (http://www.otterfashion.com/, click on the link to see a beautiful photo of Charlie David...). Boy Midflight is the story of Ashley, an 18 years old struggling with his important life choices who has the chance to be a fashion model for Otter; it's quite a good commercial choice to mix reality with fiction, both of the partners in this business, Palari Publishing and Otter Fashion, gain a showcase in the other market industry.

And then, have you ever wonder how those photoshoot are? I know that most of the time, the picture is chosen on a photostock website, but it's nice to see that sometime an author is lucky enought to have his own personal photo for the cover.



The Final Cover )
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Do you know that feeling when you are sure to know something but you are missing the link between two points? I like very much Steve Walker's art (even if I wonder why does he change website every few months...: http://quest.sasktelwebhosting.com/) and I'm pretty sure to be able to recognize his style when I see a paint. Then I like very much some of Michael Thomas Ford's covers (http://www.michaelthomasford.com/), the one with the white background and in the middle a picture of one or more men, always by behind. It's months already that I wanted to buy one or more of that books, but I have to order them online, and usually I prefer to see the book before ordering it. So Sunday, during my last shopping trip (wondering where? Giovanni's Room in Philadelphia obviously!), I picked up one of those books, neither being sure if it was exactly the one I wanted to read, but the cover was so pretty and I knew that the author is very good, so one or the other was the same. My choice is Looking for It, and during the flight back home I sat there, admring the last addition to my collection and suddenly I had a realization: that picture on the cover was for sure a Steve Walker's work! And yes, I was right, I searched the back cover and there it was, the name of the artist. As soon as I was back home, I searched for all the covers of Michael Thomas Ford with that style, and then matched them one by one with a Steve Walker's paint in his gallery. And today I'd like to feature you my little matching work.


Prince of Tides, Steve Walker, 2002

Changing Tides by Michael Thomas Ford, 2007: Few authors write about the full spectrum of gay men's lives with as much warmth, honesty, humor, and compassion as Michael Thomas Ford. Now the bestselling author of Last Summer, Looking For It, and Full Circle, delivers a shimmering, heartwarming story of one summer in the lives of three people, of the elusive search for human connection—and the necessity of love. Marine biologist Ben Ransome understands the sea, especially the tiny, beautiful sea slugs he has studied and admired for most of his life. What Ben doesn't understand are people, and now, one of the most important people in his life—his sixteen-year-old daughter, Caddie—is coming to live with him for the summer. But the sweet, happy child he remembers has been replaced by a wounded, angry stranger who resents everything about her father. Caddie is determined to act out in every way, leaving Ben feeling more alone than ever. Hudson Jones has come to Monterey, California, to find the answers to all his questions. The young, ambitious graduate student believes he's found a lost John Steinbeck novel called Changing Tides that seems to hint at the author's love for his best friend, Ed "Doc" Ricketts. If he can prove it, his career will be made. And then, perhaps he can quiet the personal demons that haunt him. But first, he'll need some local help in his research, and Ben just may be able to supply him with access to the information he needs. It's clear to Hudson that the handsome, quietly passionate Ben needs some help, too—with Caddie and his life. Sharing dinners and walks on the beach, intellectual discussions and heart-to-heart conversations, Ben and Hudson move from tentative friendship to a surprising, revelatory relationship, one with the power to point them toward the most important discoveries of their lives. For Ben, it's a summer of new beginnings, even as his daughter embarks on a dangerous course that will test the new happiness he's found. Changing Tides is an extraordinary novel that explores the glorious flaws and frailties of human beings in the never-ending struggle to connect, to be open to love, and to embrace the unknown in order to live fully.

Amazon: Changing Tides

Read more... )

More Artists at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
The Portuguese artist HvH is probably familiar to you in one form or another from a variety of publications, for example, his comics have been published in the American magazines FRESHMEN & MEN. Patrick Fillion’s house of comics Class Comics have also often provided a platform for this very talented artist.



more pics )

HvH’s drawings impress with their imaginative style and consistent bizarre visuals that are very distinctive.

The first time I saw his works was inside the Eric Arvin stories collection's Slight Details & Random Events. After that he did all the other covers for Eric Arvin, both old a new version of Subsurdity, and the sequel coming out this September.

In June 2008 Bruno Gmunder released Gone to the Movies by HvH: Never before seen and yet somehow strangely familiar – HvH’s wilful new gay interpretation of more or less famous movie posters is highly entertaining. The artist masterfully plays with our expectations, playfully tweaking the history of cinema a bit, where until now gays have always gotten short shrift. His work is sometimes ironic and irrelevant, occasionally affectionate and amusing and in the end is simply a magnificent homage to cinema!

Amazon: Gone To The Movies

"Ironic, respectful, lovingly and amusing in equal measure" Kontakt

"A lot of the illustrations are surprisingly hot and some are hilarious. [...] flipping through it and laughing at a few posters at a time provides a nice amusement." EDGE Boston

http://hvhexpo.blogspot.com/

More Artists at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Professional Artist and Illustrator with extensive experience in publishing, fashion, advertising, television, and retail industries for over 25 years, Nick Backes is known for creating classic, realistic images for a diverse clientele. Accomplished in pencil, pastels, and oil, he was honored in the Society of Illustrators Show in New York City with work in the Society’s Thirty-First Annual of American Illustration. He has also additional experience in theater art.

 
OK - Let's Talk, 18" x 24"

more pics )

“I’ve never liked my work,” Backes said. “I don’t think it’s good. I prefer other artists, and like different styles than what I do.” Despite Backes’ personal opinion, for decades the 58-year-old Oklahoma City native has made a career out of creating art for those who see his work in a much different light.

Nick Backes lives and works in Oklahoma City, OK, and formerly was a San Francisco's resident. He attended Academy of Art, San Francisco, CA, and previously University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond, OK. He served as Designer and Illustrator for OKLAHOMA EDUCATIONAL TELEVISION AUTHORITY (OETA) while attending Central State University on full scholarship. Backes studied art as his major, while minoring in theater. It was several years after moving out from his strict childhood home and only a couple of years after graduating from college when Backes truly found himself in the midst of a successful profession. With a confident mindset, Backes moved to San Francisco to launch what would become a whirlwind career. “I thought I may be famous,” Backes said. Within a week of job hunting and a quick skim through the phone book, Backes had an artist agent and a job with Levi Strauss.

He illustrates books for The Pleasant Company, a division of Mattel, Inc., including the art for the “Molly” books in the American Girls Collection. He slso worked with Bantam Books and Dell Publishing Company.

 

fashion art ) 

He was commissioned by Italian couture designer, Valentino, to illustrate fashions in the 1983-1985 international advertising campaigns for HOUSE OF VALENTINO, Rome, Italy. Backes’ eyes still twinkle when thinking back to working in Italy with the famed designer. “It was thrilling to be in the Couture House with Audrey Hepburn in the next room, and to touch and feel Brooke Shields’ dress,” Backes said. “It was a whole new world; I was so innocent and had never traveled that far. But I got used to it pretty fast!”

Experiencing first-hand the damage and distress caused by the 1989 earthquake, Backes reevaluated his living conditions and decided to move back to his childhood home of Oklahoma City. “It was a traumatic experience,” Backes recollected, thinking back to the earthquake. “It’s odd to not be able to cross a bridge, or to fear going up to the 20th floor to see a dentist. I had a first aid kit and a suitcase by my bed – that’s crazy.” Moving back to Oklahoma, Backes found himself closer to family and friends, and comfortable in the familiar setting. The opportunity to continue working in theater gave Backes the ability to hone his acting skills while designing and painting sets for Carpenter Theatre. But as the years passed and new technology developed, Backes realized he must reevaluate his career as well if he wanted any kind of future in the business.

 

publishing works )

“The advent of the computer has almost erased all jobs,” Backes said. “It was an era that kind of went away.” Always ready to try something new, Backes looked at this as an opportunity to jumpstart his career and to delve into art in which he had little experience. While computers have made finding work much more difficult, Backes remains optimistic, and has turned to new challenges, including oil painting and murals.

Though work may be slower these days, Backes does not plan to add technology to his current successful duo of pencil and/or paints and old-fashioned creative ability. “I don’t like computer art at all,” he said. “Machines and technology, I just don’t have a sense for them. I’ve worked my whole life to get where I am now, and it’s very hard to try to start a new career.”

While Backes looks for new clients, he spends his spare time painting for art shows, a rare occasion when he can create whatever art he wants. For Backes’ latest art show, oil paintings dotted the walls, breaking away from the customary drawings that have always driven forward his career. “I liked doing oil paintings because I never do it,” Backes said. “It takes techniques I’m not used to, and it’s freer and less restricted.”

The future of Backes’ art may be uncertain, but one thing is clear – he will always be ready for a new challenge, and is almost undeniably going to conquer it. “I love what I do because I can do some things that a lot of people can’t do,” Backes said. “It’s very nice to be born with something that can make you a living, and I feel very lucky.”

http://www.nickbackes.com/

Original Interview: http://distinctlyoklahoma.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=299&Itemid=62
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
""If you're having fun, you're doing it wrong" - Fred Fixler - The only advice Fred gave us which I didn't take to heart.

Several decades ago, with the original intention of drawing super-heroes, I started serious art study with retired illustrator, Fred Fixler. Fred was a highly skilled illustrator best known for painting movie posters ( Comedy of Terrors, Pit and the Pendulum, Man with the X-ray Eyes, Burn Witch Burn, House of Usher, Hercules- Unchained, Where the Boys Are, etc...). and elegant pretty girls. Fred had been a student of Frank Reilly and Robert Beverly Hale at the Art Students' League, with fellow classmates James Bama, Robert Maguire and Clark Hulings, among many others.


Summer Treat

Glen Orbik )

After a few years, I took over many of Fred's classes at the school he started when he retired from teaching and have continued off and on for over 20 years. While at school I met future partner and sometimes collaborator, Laurel Blechman, a fellow Fixler student and teacher. I've been lucky enough to work on everything from book covers to movie posters, collectable lithographs and plates, to video games and comic books. I've gotten to do covers for such authors as Stephen King and Ray Bradbury.

I've painted retro detectives, femme fatales, fantasy heroes, Sci-Fi rockets & Jedi's, western bandits and Hammer-style vampires. I'm a major fan of classic magazine illustration (who isn't ?), pulp paperback art, and film- noir.

A short, incomplete list of artistic influences (and a chance to name-drop...): Robert McGinnis, Gil Elvgren, Dean Cornwell, Mead Schaeffer,Andrew Loomis, John Buscema... and a healthy dose of Norman Rockwell

Partial client list: DC Comics, Vertigo, Marvel Comics, Warner Bros., Clampett Studios, Universal Pictures, Sony, Avon Books, Berkley Books, cRandom House, Del Rey, Hard Case Crime, and TSR / Dungeons and Dragons." Glen Orbik

---

""If it takes doing 100,000 drawings to get to the good ones, you'd better get started." - Fred Fixler

When I was a classical musician, I used to do art for relaxation - those days are gone. After trying several different art instructors, I was lucky enough to find Fred Fixler. Beyond being astounded by his drawing skills, his practical approach to teaching art really struck a cord with my own musical training. As a professional illustrator, Fred's working methods (and now our's) were very simailar to Norman Rockwell's (also a former student at the Art Student's League in NY). We do extensive research, where my background in costuming often comes in handy. ( I make Glen build the props.) Our back room is a melange of costumes, props (anyone need a Galatus helmet?), scrap files & my old comic book collection.


Roslyn's War

Laurel Blechman )

My first artistic influences were the decorative styles of artists like Aubrey Beardsley and Alphonse Mucha and the bold compositions of the early poster artists like Ludwig Hohlwein. Any partial list of major art influences would definitely include James Bama, Mead Schaefer, Bernini, Ingres, and 50's & 60's illustrators like Coby Whitmore and Al Parker who pushed the compostional envelope. And for great compostions you can't beat old black & white film noir and classic Westerns-- at least that's what I have told my students.

Partial client list: DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Berkley Books, Scholastic Books, 20th Century Fox, Bic, Penzoil, Screen Writers Guild, California Bar Association" Laurel Blechman

http://www.orbikart.com/
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
For all romance fans, the name of Victor Gadino maybe says nothing, but he is the cover artist for some of the most famous romance savage covers like Prisoner of My Desire (just the title!) of Johanna Lindsey and Lord of the Wolves by Heather Graham. But what probably most of the romance readers don't know, is that Victor Gadino is also the cover artist for the first novels by Gordon Merrick, like The Quirk. Plus he is also a very appreciated artist for movie posters and collectible items related to the movie industry. Victor Gadino is also a gay themed artist, hosted in important Gay Art Foundations.


The Magic Pill, 20 x 24, Original drawings in graphite of Angels

more pics )



Victor Gadino's covers for Gordon Merrick )

Victor is an award winning artist who holds an MFA from Pratt Institute. His work has appeared in the promotion of the top clients of the corporate, publishing, and entertainment worlds, and awards received include one from The Hollywood Reporter for his work on prominent movie posters. He has created album covers for various artists, posters for Broadway plays, and collectibles for the Bradford Exchange, and Franklyn Mint. His work has been featured in several publications including Aphrodisia II -the art of the female form,Direct Art Magazine Volume 14,Treasures from the Permanent Collection of the Leslie Lohman Foundation,and Dirty Little Drawings published by Bruno Gmunder.He also accepts portrait commissions and his work can be found in the collections of Mr. Goerge Lucas, Mr. Clint Eastwood, Mr. Alan Alda, the Tisch family, and other prominent New York City families.

Clients: American Express, Disney, General Foods, Harper Collins, Hearst, Lucas Films, MGM, NBC, Paramount, Playboy, Random House, RJ Reynolds, Seagrams, Sony, Time Warner, United Artists, Universal

More Artists at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Proud to have a place in the hearts of women for 60 years

NEW YORK and TORONTO, April 6 /PRNewswire/ -- In celebration of Harlequin's 60th anniversary, the internationally recognized publisher is sponsoring an exhibition of original cover art that will focus not only on the changing shape of desire and fantasy but also on the social meaning and context of these images. THE HEART OF A WOMAN: Harlequin Cover Art 1949--2009 debuts at the Openhouse Gallery in New York City on May 29, 2009, and will be on view until June 12, 2009.



By presenting 60 years of cover artwork, the exhibition offers a unique insight into the profound transformations that have occurred in women's lives over the past six decades. These changes have been captured and reflected on the front of Harlequin novels--from shifts in private desires to shifts in the politics of gender. Although it is the stories of romance that charm the hearts of so many women, it is the artwork on the book covers that offers the first tantalizing hint of the pleasures that await between the covers.

The show also spotlights some of the notable names who created these stirring pieces and how the artistic process itself has changed over the decades. Over a hundred original works of art will be displayed, from Harlequin's beginnings in 1949 to the present day.

vintage cover art )

Elizabeth Semmelhack is the head curator at a major museum in Toronto. As an independent curator, she has curated exhibitions at the Museum of Sex in New York and the St. Louis Art Museum. She has also been a consultant to the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. She is the author of Heights of Fashion.

Harlequin Enterprises Limited is the global leader in series romance and one of the world's leading publishers of women's fiction, with titles issued worldwide in 28 languages and sold in 114 international markets. The company produces over 120 titles monthly and publishes more than 1,100 authors from around the world. Harlequin's Web site is located at www.eHarlequin.com. Harlequin has offices in 19 countries, including offices in Toronto, New York and London. For more information please visit www.eHarlequin.com or press.eHarlequin.com.

vintage cover art )

Event:
THE HEART OF A WOMAN:
Harlequin Cover Art 1949-2009
Openhouse Gallery
201 Mulberry Street
New York (Soho), NY
Private Event: May 29
Open to Public: May 30-June 12

SOURCE Harlequin Enterprises Limited

Marleah Stout, Senior Manager, Public Relations, Harlequin Enterprises Limited, +1-416-391-7009, marleah_stout@harlequin.ca; or for press inquiries: marleah_stout_press@harlequin.ca

vintage cover art )
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Since 1993 Craig White Illustration has been providing illustration and design services for the media industry.

Craig's work has appeared in numerous national magazine advertisements, packaging, outdoor, web sites and book covers.



more pics )

Craig's work has graced the covers of best-selling authors such as, Robert Ludlum, Vince Flynn, Clive and Dirk Cussler, Laurell K. Hamilton, Sherrilyn Kenyon and others.

An avid surfer and snowboarder, Craig resides in southern California with his beautiful and lovely wife and costantly amazing daughter.

http://www.craigwhiteillustration.com/
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
"'Normal' things wind up being not so normal, once you scratch the surface...." Chad Michael Ward

Chad Michael Ward's appreciation for the abnormal and different began when he was still a child. While most kids buried themselves in Saturday morning cartoons, Chad was always waiting to catch a glimpse of the next Saturday afternoon horror film. He invested in comics and sought out artists who showcased the macabre and inhuman in an alluring and refined way. Artists like H.R. Giger, Dave McKean, and Barron Storey became his early heroes, and his first influences. After 20+ years of reading, watching and absorbing the bizarre, the terrifying, and the odd, Chad began to set foot on his own artistic path, originally just to purge the ideas and thoughts of his own mind.



more pics )

Enter digital art. It afforded him the ability to most accurately and immediately express much of what was already rattling around his head. Having been interested in photography as well, Chad began to shoot some amateur photos in 1997 as a way to work the images into his art.

Chad moved to Los Angeles in 2002 and was soon asked to shoot material for a local modeling agency. From there he went on to shoot many other local models. As his art emerged he found other artists and photographers that inspired him such as Ashley Wood, Cliff Nielsen, Phil Hale, Jon Foster, and of course, Joel-Peter Witkin.

"I've never been formally educated. I just started playing with Photoshop one day, and eventually started posting my work to a website. That wound up landing me my first professional gig." Chad Michael Ward

Once in L.A., Chad was invited by director Nathan "Karma" Cox to shoot some still photography for a couple of his music videos, the first being Static-X's "Cold" video. From the moment he set foot onto the set that day, he knew film was his next artistic destination. Exposure to directors such as Chris Cunningham, Floria Sigismondi, David Fincher and Mark Romanek aided in cementing his new love. Shortly after working with Nathan Cox, Chad met Pearry Teo. Pearry was very interested in Chad's work, and besides being a good friend, became Chad's business partner. Together, they formed Teo/Ward Productions. They are now in preproduction for their first up-and-coming film project, "The 13th Hour" which includes Chad's short film "FABLE". Chad continues to pursue his photographic and digital art as well. With 3 books of photography now available--Black Rust, Autopsyrotica, and DevilEngine, and many more in the works-- Chad continues to create on several mediums, and continues to evolve both as an artist, and an icon.

"I think 'scary' or 'ugly' things attract people because they are different. Everyone knows how to appreciate something beautiful or pleasant, but when something scary, repulsive, or different comes along, we can't help but to stop and stare. We're drawn to it, because we are drawn to that which we don't understand. That is human nature, to want to examine the unknown." Chad Michael Ward (BIOGRAPHY BY SHELBY JONES)

http://www.digitalapocalypse.com/
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Imitation, Influence... and Coincidence is an exhibition developed by Covering Photography, currently on view at the Boston Public Library. The real world version is up through December 31st, 2008 in the BPL's Rare Books and Manuscripts exhibition space (the Boston Public Library is located at 700 Boylston St., Boston MA. Hours are Mon - Fri, 9 - 5)



For those of you who live too far away to be unable to view 'Imitation, Influence... and Coincidence' in the real world, you may view a virtual tour of the exhibition, complete with photographs and text. It's not the same as actually attending, but it's probably the next best thing.
 
The purpose of the site is to take the viewer through the show, display by display, using photographs of the exhibition space and details of the books, covers, source images and accompanying text. The books are displayed in a total of 17 display cases.

Imitation, Influence... and Coincidence: an Online Tour:

http://bplshow.blogspot.com/
reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
Aleta Rafton, an award winning book cover artist, has illustrated hundreds of bookcovers for major publishers in the United Staes.

Originally working exclusively in oils, Aleta now paints mostly digitally. She has a wide range of styles, from impressionist to realist and her work genres include romance, fantasy, landscape and still life.

In the past she worked for Avon Books, Bantam Doubleday Dell, Ballantine, Harlequin, Harper Collins, Kensington, Penguin Putnam, St. Martin's, Scholastic, Zondervan.



more pics )

http://www.aletarafton.com/

Profile

reviews_and_ramblings: (Default)
reviews_and_ramblings

April 2017

S M T W T F S
      1
2345678
91011121314 15
16 1718 1920 21 22
23242526272829
30      

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Disclaimer

All cover art, photo and graphic design contained in this site are copyrighted by the respective publishers and authors. These pages are for entertainment purposes only and no copyright infringement is intended. Should anyone object to our use of these items please contact by email the blog's owner.
This is an amateur blog, where I discuss my reading, what I like and sometimes my personal life. I do not endorse anyone or charge fees of any kind for the books I review. I do not accept money as a result of this blog.
I'm associated with Amazon/USA Affiliates Programs.
Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. However, some books were purchased by the reviewer and not provided for free. For information on how a particular title was obtained, please contact by email the blog's owner.
Days of Love Gallery - Copyright Legenda: http://www.elisarolle.com/gallery/index_legenda.html

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Apr. 24th, 2017 03:19 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios