Sunday, November 23, 2008

Personal Art

Every since I turned professional I have been talking about doing paintings now and then just for myself. The idea of painting something just for fun is both amazingly appealing and incredibly terrifying, so I mostly talk about it. However, several years ago, when I first met my Julie, she showed me a drawing that she had done long before she became a pro herself. I was so impressed with the strength of her drawing that I decided to do a painting based on her sketch (with her permission, of course) The result fell way short of the power of the original drawing. Here are both versions, hers, bold and powerful, mine, professional but lacking in drama.

Since then, almost twenty years later, I have done a couple of other pieces "just for fun". Here are two more of those. Some day I will do more, I am sure.


Monday, November 17, 2008

Portrait of My Father

I did this painting as a birthday present to my father, Milton Bell, who is a highly respected architect in Texas. He has designed many landmark buildings including the US Embassy in Mexico City and the Texas Energy Museum. I chose to paint him at work at his drawing board because, well, I think it's just his most comfortable spot in the whole world. In fact, it's possible that he may be genetically linked to his drawing board.
Inspired by our sons' gallery paintings, I wanted to experiment with a looser style of painting than my usual fantasy art style. I recommend to other artists to try out different styles if for no other reason than the psychological. It feels so funny! It's good to explore and stretch yourself.


Friday, November 14, 2008

Hajime Sorayama Show

Last night at the Opera Gallery in New York City, we were privileged to attend the opening of an exhibit by the seriously great artist, Hajime Sorayama. His work is a huge inspiration to each and every one of us and meeting him in person was an amazing experience. He's as down-to-earth, gracious, and friendly as a man can be!
Hajime Sorayama, Julie, David Palumbo, Anthony Palumbo, and Boris

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Illuxcon, 2 days after

Well, if you weren't at Illuxcon this past weekend, you missed a pretty good time and a unique opportunity to see tons and tons of beautiful fantasy paintings, drawings, and sculptures by some of the best artists in the business.  Here are pictures of some of the fun(Left to Right and then down) View from the second floor, David Palumbo during a painting demonstration, Patrick Jones, David's table, Michael Whelan, John Jude Palencar, dinner at El Campesino in Altoona, Justin Sweet.  
Dave Seeley's corner, Julie with sculpted figure by Tom Kuebler, Boris with sculpted mask by Jordu Schell, Jordu with a sculpture that he traded us for a sketch!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Going to Illuxcon!

Tomorrow we're heading out to the great city of Altoona, PA to attend the first Illuxcon, a convention devoted entirely to fantasy art.  It was invented and put together by Pat and Jeannie Wilshire, obviously two of the most devoted fantasy art fans ever!  We're going to have tons of original art on display as well as panel discussions and painting demonstrations.  Plus, as always, we're going to have tons of fun.  But then, we always take our fun with us wherever we go.
So, we're leaving you with these winged ponies gorging themselves on organic, trans fat free tortilla chips as food for thought.  
To all of you who will be with us in Altoona, see you soon!

Boris and Julie

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

From My Nasty Sketch book

I have always enjoyed doing cartooning just for the fun of it. Most of the time I do them on napkins or envelopes, so I don't usually keep them. Many years ago, 1979 to be precise, I decided to do a full book of the nasty cartoons that often come from my sick head to my even sicker pen, and then they get tossed into the garbage bin for obvious reasons. After the initial drawings, priorities pushed aside the project. Anyway, here are two of those.


Saturday, November 1, 2008

Peter Workman's Birthday party

Peter Workman of Workman Publishing (the folks who publish our calendar every year) had a birthday recently and we were invited.  The party was aboard a really cool yacht in the East River in New York and we cruised all around the city from a viewpoint we'd never seen before. We were all sitting around eating cake and listening to a live Dixieland jazz band and someone said, "Wow! The Statue of Liberty!" We thought, "oh, we've seen it before, but let's go take a look anyway." But, whoa! We were really close and at night with all the lights on it, it was truly breathtaking. Really gorgeous.  And huge, too.  That is one huge statue.

Boris, Peter Workman, Regina Pereira, Julie, Suzanne Rafer

Workman Publishing has published Boris' annual calendar for 29 consecutive years now (think about that!). Julie signed on to the calendar in tandem with Boris in 2000. Suzanne Rafer has been the art director since 1983 (25 years!).  It's definitely our favorite project every year to paint 13 paintings of exactly what we love to paint--beautiful, heroic people in fantasy settings doing magical things.
Happy birthday, Peter!  We love you!