31 October Portraits

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In the beginning of October, I announced an ambitious project I titled 31 October Portraits. The concept was to produce one watercolor study/exercise every day in October featuring a horror icon. Each piece would be an exploration in painting technic and realistic lighting. These exercises are important to me because I make a living as a cartoonist drawing and painting what is in my head. It is beneficial and necessary for my growth as an artist to put the cartoons aside and focus on realism. I had the month of October completely open and thought this goal was plausible, even with a 3-month-old baby. But as I was exploring reality in my art, reality smacked me in the face. October not only is the month of Halloween, but also the birthdays of my wife and myself. Then, my wife took on a design job visualizing a compelling retail space which involved me making this vision a reality, helping with construction, renovation, painting and set dressing. Halfway through the month I fell behind on my portraits and even worked myself to the point of illness that befell on my the morning of Halloween.

I had planned on releasing all 31 portraits for sale on November 1st. But the deadline arrived and I only had fifteen pieces done. It was a good attempt, but when it comes down to it, our bodies are only machines, not avatars, and inevitably we do break down. I had so much fun producing these studies that I’m going to carry on and try to finish the 31 portraits by the end of November. I will be releasing these paintings for sale weekly, on every Friday starting next week. In the meantime, the first fifteen are currently available for sale on my webstore until the end of November.

OVER THE GARDEN WALL 2017 SPECIAL

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In April 2017, while hovering around my booth at Monsterpalooza, I was approached by a couple editors from Kaboom! comics. They asked me if I would be interested in contributing to an Over the Garden Wall comic book special. I was most likely reserved in my reply but on the inside I was elated. I’m a huge fan of the series by Pat McHale and the world in which he created for animation is the world in which my head lives daily.

In the months to follow, I conceived of an idea inspired by the legend of Robert Johnson and the Devil at the crossroads. For research and inspiration, I read tales of diabolical dealings like Young Goodman Brown by Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Devil and Daniel Webster by Stephen Vincent Benét, and The Devil and Tom Walker by Washington Irving. I researched old folk songs like The Devil and the PloughmanSold It to the Devil, and Old Lady and the Devil. I dug deep into the German legend of Faust, the diabolical speculations around Italian violinist Niccolò Paganini, and other folklore found in A History of the Devil by William Woods, Magic, Supernaturalism and Religion by Kurt Seligmann, and The History of Hell by Alice K. Turner. But it was in discovering an eleventh century sermon titled On False Gods, where Archbishop Wulfstan II warns of encounters with Mercury (or Odin) at the crossroads, that I was led into Norse Mythology and the stories involving Odin.

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Thus, Odin’s Bargain was bore into existence.

Odin’s Bargain presents a seamless combination of Over the Garden Wall and Grimly’s own work, such that things that shouldn’t seem to work on the surface end up working perfectly”
-Multiversity Comics

Over the Garden Wall 2017 Special was released Sept 20th, 2017. Currently, I am offering the book for sale at my webstore. All books ordered come signed on the cover.

CELEBRATING 10 YEARS OF REDNECK GHOULS

CANNIBAL FLESH RIOT

In July of 2007, I released my short film Cannibal Flesh Riot! as a collector’s edition DVD with an accompanying CD of music inspired by the film. Ten years later, this creature feature is still enjoyed by fans who snagged up a copy. I look back at this film with fond memories. A group of friends with ambition and vision came together to make an eclectic film inspired by old black and white monster flicks, trashy exploitation, and Rock ‘N’ Roll. In commemoration of the Decennial, this same two-disc set is available for $10 for everyone to enjoy! I will be exhuming some old posters and postcards to throw into every order while supplies last. While looking for these items I will also be gathering up other out-of-print merchandise, as well as new items, to release on the site throughout the rest of the year

Go to the curios page to pick up a copy of Cannibal Flesh Riot! today and look for new items in the months to come.

MONSTERPALOOZA ART RELEASE!

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Only a few days away from Monsterpalooza, which is creeping up on us this weekend April 7th-9th. My biggest announcement for the show is the release of new classic monster originals that will premiere at the show. These pieces include watercolor studies and pencil renderings ranging in price from $250-$600. I will not be doing event commissions at this time, so snatch one of these pieces up instead. I will also be exhibiting a few other originals, but mostly focusing on showcasing prints. I am still ever-so-patiently awaiting the arrival of the three newly published Wicked Nursery Rhymes books to come in (which should be any day now). I’m crossing my fingers that they arrive in time for the show. I will have the first four WNR prints available, but I’m also bringing a limited quantity of the next six WNR prints that will be released within the next few months. In addition, you can expect a library of my classic titles, new toddler shirts, and the Society of Grave Robbers garments. I will announce on social media any other items that I might stumble across worthy of bringing. I will be joined by musician/colleague/friend Curtis RX of Creature Feature, who will be gracing the MCP booth with his presence and his own diabolical creations. I hope to see you there.

MONSTERPALOOZA…HERE WE COME!

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Monsterpalooza is coming up in April, and I’m getting geared up to be there. This is the second year Mad Creator Productions will have a booth. I rarely do conventions anymore, but this is one of my favorites to be a guest at as well as attend. I will be bringing some artwork, but mostly focusing on prints this year. A majority of my book catalogue will be available along with Society of Grave Robbers T-shirts and Hoodies. Unless there is a mishap, I will have all three Wicked Nursery Rhymes books fresh off the boat, along with WNR affiliated merchandise. I WILL NOT be doing any more convention sketches at this time. But I plan on having something new to satisfy the art collector. Be sure to follow me on any of my social networks to stay up-to-date.

MONSTERPALOOZA April 7th-9th
Pasadena Convention Center
300 Green St. Pasadena, CA 91101

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SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES…

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I am delighted to announce that an excitingly wicked time draws near. The release of Wicked Nursery Rhymes III, along with reprints of Wicked Nursery Rhymes I and Wicked Nursery Rhymes II, is scheduled for this Spring (March/April). It has been many harvest moons since both WNR1 and WNR2 have gone out of print and WNR3 was originally planned to be released in 2009. But due to acts of misfortune, untimely distraction, and evil curses, this happening was drawn out for eight grueling years. Other than by an act of God, I feel fairly confident that within a month, I will have the trilogy in hand.

I will be releasing merchandise to coincide with the books. Starting at the end of February, I will be releasing sticker packs and two new prints. In March, I will begin preorders on the books (with a limited trilogy bundle price) along with two new prints and t-shirts for toddlers, kids and women. I will be releasing a total of thirteen WNR prints throughout the rest of the year. I also plan on releasing more shirts and other WNR affiliated goodies.

If you are not already following me on instagram, I have been posting the history of WNR, going back to 2001 when these characters first appeared on shirts sold in Hot Topic stores. The posts include final artwork, sketches, scribbles, notes, ramblings, shirt designs, press news, and everything else that I can think of that centers around the WNR universe over the past fifteen years. Go check it out if this kind of thing interests you.

It will be a very wicked year indeed.

MERRY GRISMAS

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I set up this website to be easily updated so I could produce a weekly newsletter showcasing events, work-in-progress, future releases and lifestyle insights. While the website is seamless as a platform for this activity, my life’s priorities are not. Although my family will always take precedence, I would like to find a healthy balance where my website updates receives it’s fair commitment. Now that 2016 is turning it’s final pages, I see this as a possible goal for the new year.

Until then…Merry Grismas!

TALES FROM THE BROTHERS GRIMM BOOK LAUNCH RECAP

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Saturday, July 30th, was an amazing night at Creature Features, as we launched my new book, Gris Grimly’s Tales From The Brothers Grimm. On display were thirty framed original watercolor paintings from the book in the gallery space of the store. But to get there, you had to pass through a small room that was designed and decorated by my wife and a handful of friends. This space transported the individual to a mystical world preying on all possible senses. Before the curtains even parted, the aroma of dewy pine trees and spiced gingerbread cottages IMG 7945indicated that another world existed beyond. Within the room, earthy turquoise walls and incense calmed the soul, preparing the mind for a heightened sense of consciousness. The overgrowth of ferns, moss and other fauna let you forget the urban world you came from and enticed a carefree existence within this enchanted realm. It was a spiritual domain, cloaked in sacred tapestries and laced linens, dimly lit by candles and mythical orbs.

The 19th Century resonated during the research that took place in and around production of the book. Grimms Fairy Tales are a collection of Germanic folk tales that have no author and date back beyond generations as they were handed down through verbal storytelling. Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm took on the scholarly roles to collect these tales and publish them in 1812. But it is the 1884 translation by Margaret Raine Hunt that I chose to focus on for the reprinting of the classic. The years in-between, and the events that occurred, shaped the tone and content of these didactic stories. I chose to set the stories and it’s characters in the Edwardian period that shortly followed. It seems to be the last age of magick, where although science was exposingfolklore at a rapid pace, superstition, devils and sorcery could still exist in unexplored regions of the woods and caves. This is the foundation of the book that I created, and I took it upon myself to create that experience at the event, by hunting down antiquated devices, utensils, furniture and taxidermy.

IMG 7986Signs of life and death abound all around, deep in the shadows, around corners and overhead. A mounted “wolf” guarded the entrance to the gallery. A royal frog anxiously waited upon his perch to steal kisses from beautiful maidens. The earthly remains of roebuck and faun lay scattered among the mulch floor and strewn over gypsy tables. The observant eye may have even caught a glimpse of an abnormally long lock of flaxen hair weaving throughout thickets of branches. The ancient melodies of folk songs representing Poland, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Romania, and other European countries, danced through the humid air in a composition of fiddle, dulcimer, nyckelharpa, flute, accordion, and violin. Two spirited drinks were concocted and offered. The first, a favorite of mine called Faithful John, was a smoked whiskey enriched with Eastern spices, aromatic herbs, and a hint of anise. Smoldering rosemary unleashed a wormwood enchantment. The second, called Seven Ravens, was a sweet black berry infused Grauburgunder, whose amethyst transformed before your eyes. It was crisp, decadent, and bewitching. A gallery of baroque and romantic paintings were displayed in the room, reminding the contemporary multitude, that we were once a theistic species who feared God, conflicted with the devil, and believed in magick.

Once beyond this sensory experience, the individual was IMG 7881changed and thus prepared to exhibit the artwork from Gris Grimly’s Tales From The Brothers Grimm. Or, at least that was my intention as I felt it was important that the viewer share the same consciousness I had when I approached the cautionary tales for illustration. I was in the gallery through the duration of the event, mostly sitting at a Victorian table that was overtaken by moss, sipping whiskey and signing the new book for attendees. Every book purchased that night received a sketch of the Frog King. By the end of the night, I was drawing Frog Kings in my sleep.

Along with the exhibit and book signing, I released new limited edition prints and other merchandise to sell at the event. One print that was released exclusively for the event (and sold out) was an irregularly sized reproduction of Rapunzel from the book. We also released a signed and limited edition set for Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel and Little Red Cap. These prints are currently available in the store. We will also be releasing a limited edition print of The Frog King. Follow me on any of my network sites to be informed when this happens. I am also happy to have released the first set of enamel pins in an ongoing collection that I will be releasing regularly. This first design is the Frog King lifted straight from the cover of the book. He was released in both emerald green and the limited numbered edition of the albino variant. All of which are available in the store with only a couple albino variant pins left.

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Overall, it was an unforgettable time. Old fans/new fans, old friends/new friends, and strange vagrants who just happened to stumble in for free booze, participated in a magickal evening that occurred once, and will exist in history as “Once upon a time…”. This is the way I like to celebrate the release of a new book. Gris Grimly’s Tales From The Brothers Grimm was ideal for such a big festivity and beckons fantastical set designs. But I plan on approaching future book releases in the same way, collaborating with my wife, and friends, to deliver a once in a lifetime experience that will one day feel like a dream.