Monday, December 25, 2006

Holiday Greetings

This is a little thing I put together to send to my friends on MySpace as a holiday greeting of sorts. I figured I'd post it here for all of those who did not recieve one. So, happy holidays to you!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Pursuit of History

This semester I worked on a Theatre Department production at Brown University. Apparently my reputation as Providence's "Zombie Guy" got around to the director, who approached me to design make-up for a cast of ten singing and dancing zombies. The show was called The Pursuit of History and was about Egyptologists in the '20s who discover a tomb, only to find it full of zombies. Sorry about the poor quality of the photos. They were taken by a cast member backstage, but hopefully the high resolution production photos will show up soon.

Due to the structure of the show, ten actors had to have zombie makeup in approximately ten minutes, so I had five wonderful assistants to aid in the process of applying the makeup.

The makeup is all Cinema Secrets cream-based makeup: "Dead Guy Grey" base layer / "Forensic Blue-Grey" shadow layer / "Black" eye pattern and lips / "Wolf Brown" stippled to simulate dirt.

The director wanted the zombies to look distinctly Egyptian, and to appear as though they had been entombed for three thousand years, hence my decisions to feature Egyptian eye makeup patterns and the stippled dirt effect.

The cast was very cooperative in the process of putting on the makeup, and it was a pleasure to work with everyone involved in the production.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

"The night sky was blacker than India ink..."

Well, I haven't updated in a while, mostly because I've been rather busy with finals and such, but I thought I'd do an update just for the hell of it. This is an older piece, from the Spring. It was my final project for the second semester of 2D Design here at RISD. It was a pretty open-ended assignment, as long as it included a metal folding chair, so I decided to do a single page comic, in a noir style. It's drawn/painted in India Ink on illustration board. Sorry for the poor image quality, but I haven't had time to to a scan or a nicely lit photo yet. Here it is:

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Happy Halloween, and Namaste.

Last weekend I went with Kate to her parents' house in Framingham, Massachusetts to carve pumpkins. Of course, I brought along my set of carving tools, and this is what I came out with:

As you may already know, if you watch Lost, this is the logo for "The Swan" station on the Island. For those of you less familiar with the Dharma Initiative and the Hanso Foundation, here's what the logo looks like in the show:

So, on behalf of the DeGroots, Alvar Hanso and all of us at the Dharma Initiative, thank you. Namaste. And, Happy Halloween.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Are you watching closely?

So, we all went to go see The Prestige on Friday night, and it was amazing. And we wore costumes. Here are some daguerreotypes... er... photos.

Andrew and Kate:

Nick and Fabi:

Claire and Lia:

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

=Science and Honor=

Okay, so as many of you might already know, the greatest Sci-Fi Rocket Roll band in the universe is
=The Phenomenauts= If you're unfamiliar with them, check out or

Over the past few months, I have been working closely with them, and with my father (who is a writer/producer for TV Animation) to develop a show based on the band. I've been working on various character designs to be used in pitches and to promote the idea so that hopefully a studio will decide to buy it.

So, here's the main line-up of the characters:

From left to right, they are:
Orbit (the world's most handsomest space dog!)
Major Jimmy Boom (drums)
Corporal Joebot 2.0 (guitar / vocals)
Commander Angel Nova (guitar / vocals)
Professor Greg Arius (keyboards, etc.)
Captain Chreehos (bass)

You can view a larger version of the main line-up here:

Also joining the cast is Space Girl, the leader of a rival =Vector Squad= unit.

A vicious tyrant and all-around bad guy, Neptune Ted is the main villain.

As far as I can tell, this is what Neptune Ted's bickering little footsoldiers will look like. The design was lovingly ripped off from an amazing book cover from a 1944 edition of Planet Stories, which was a classic pulp sci-fi magazine. To my knowledge the image has become public domain now so I don't think anybody will have a problem with me using it.

I've drawn all these designs traditionally by hand, and then I've cleaned up the drawings and colored them using Flash. Hopefully the show will be picked up!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Finally... Comic Con Report: Day 3!

Okay, I admit that I should have posted this long long ago... but oh well, such is life. Anyway, that being said, day 3 was awesome. No costume, so I was free to walk around the exhibit hall, pick up a ton of free swag, and make some purchases. No panels really interested me that day so basically I just wandered around and it was wonderful. Here are some highlights:

At the Gentle Giant booth I got to see the one and only Ray Harryhausen hanging out with a giant sculpture of his Medusa... it was pretty damn cool.

I got to meet one of my biggest comic book idols, Mike Mignola (for those of you who don't know, he's the creator of Hellboy, one of my favorite comics). I guess he had just gotten there because I was like, third in line for an autograph. I purchased a nice little postcard-size limited edition print at the booth, and then I had him do a little drawing of Lobster Johnson (my favorite character of the series) on the back of the print! He seemed rather happy to do the drawing because he'd been drawing Hellboy for every one of the people who had been in line in front of me.

Kate will most likely read this so I can't say the gift I got her from the Con, but I did get something very cool for myself! Made by Haunted Portraits, it's a nice little antique photograph of "Uncle Percy" who is a handsome gentleman who, when you walk past the photo, becomes corpse-ified! How cool is that? Photos don't do it justice but the lenticular effect when you walk back and forth is absolutely amazing.

Of course nothing can capture the total sensory overload that happens at Comic Con but I think I covered most of the landmark events of the weekend. Now, to start working on next year's costume....!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Comic Con Report: Day 2

We woke up bright and early on Saturday morning, ready to face another exciting day at Comic Con. I suited up in my costume and after a quick breakfast we walked down to the convention center.

This is what I wore on Saturday. It's the T-1000 from Terminator 2: Judgement Day. I'll do a more detailed posting on the creation and the specific elements of the costume, but this pretty much shows what it looks like. Of all the costumes I've ever worn, I think this one got the biggest reaction, and I think that's saying a lot. We didn't even get a block from the hotel when a guy stopped me and asked to take a video of the costume. People were shouting out things like, "awesome!" "sweet!" "radical!" Okay, maybe not that last one, but as I passed I could hear everyone exclaiming, or even just pointing out to their friends that a terminator just walked by.

The day started with the LOST panel, which was a lot of fun. Of course they didn't reveal anything about what was going to happen, but it seemed like the panelists were having a good time so it was really entertaining. Afterwards I made a futile attempt to wander around the exhibit hall but I kept getting stopped to have photos taken of me. God knows who has photos of me. They're probably floating around the internet somewhere. I felt like a character at Disneyland or something, the way people were lining up to pose with me. It was awesome. Dad and I made our annual trip to Dick's Last Resort, a great barbeque restaurant where the staff are intentionally rude and insulting to you.

After lunch, we went to the SHAG panel. If you aren't familiar with him, he's an amazing painter who does these sort of retro tiki lounge paintings. They're really cool, and you should check him out at . I had to leave the presentation to go to the Disney panel, at which they presented stuff from Pirates of the Caribbean. They explained in great detail the effects used to make Davy Jones, and they even previewed some clips of the third film! It was quite awesome. Immediately after followed Sony's presentation of Ghost Rider and Spider-Man 3. The crowd went wild when the first actual footage of Venom was played on the screen.

I met up with my dad and the =Phenomenauts= outside the Adult Swim panel, which they had gone to, and the drummer Jimmy Boom came with me and dad to a couple of fancy cocktail parties for animation industry professionals. After getting weird looks from drunk people coming out of the clubs (I was still in my costume) we collapsed back at the hotel.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Comic Con Report: Part 1

So, Friday marked the beginning of my 2006 Comic Con trip, and it was awesome. Claire rode down to San Diego with me and my dad, and we spent the day together. After parking the car and eating breakfast, we kicked off the con by going to the panel for Hellboy Animated, which looks absolutely amazing. I can't wait for it to come out. After that, we wandered around the floor and met up with my good friend Byron. We went to the beginning of the 20th Century Fox panel, but we had to cut out early to head over to Battlestar Galactica! What a great panel. Every one of the cast members and creators was so entertaining, especially considering what a bleak show Galactica is. After that we just grabbed lunch and wandered around some more for the rest of our day at the convention center. I guess before I move on to Friday's other events, I'll show some photos from the day!

Here is what I wore on Friday. It's the "Baron von Fogel" out fit again, but I'd like to point out a couple of changes since I last wore it! I made a tie pin out of a gear! And the buttons now look like little clocks! Yay!

People kept coming up to me and asking me what I was from. They seemed a little confused when I told them it was an original costume design, but I guess it's nice to know that people liked it enough to ask.

This is, without a doubt, one of the sexiest statues I have ever seen. I guess I'll have to dress Kate up as Leia sometime...

Weta Collectibles is making ray guns! This is one of three that they had on display. Claire and I were salivating just standing there looking at the pretty ray guns. Maybe some day I'll be able to afford one.

Later in the evening, we attended a =Phenomenauts= concert at the House of Blues! If you don't know who they are, go to and please check them out. You will be amazed. Anyway, it was a great show. The crowd was a bit intense and we got pushed around even more than usual, but it was a lot of fun. I don't think I've been covered in so much sweat in my life... and I'm not sure it was even my own. The Aquabats! were great too, of course.

=The Phenomenauts= also attended the Con, at which they decided to give out convention-exclusive pins! It was much to my surprise, then, that the pins featured the character designs that I had drawn for the cartoon show pitch! Each one of the guys had pins that featured the cartoon version of himself, and you had to find each guy in order to get that particular pin! It was just freaky though to be at the show and see everyone walking around with my art pinned to their clothes.

I suppose that's about all I've got to share from the first day. Stay tuned for more Con reports in the coming days...

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

First Post - An Enchanted Evening

Well, even though this is my first post and I've got a lot of time to make up and things to discuss, I'll start with my most recent experience: The Labyrinth of Jareth Masquerade Ball! Wow, what an event. Not only did I get a chance to show off my own costume, but I got to see so many amazing costumes that other people had made. Unlike a run-of-the-mill Halloween or costume party, everyone clearly put a ton of time and effort into their costumes.

I attended in my trademark "Baron von Fogel" outfit. As the following photos show, the costume consists of a vintage collapsible top hat, welding goggles, shoulder armor (four aluminum plates that I cut, filed, curved, buffed, and riveted to a leather strip and a belt), and a vintage tailcoat (courtesy of Kate). Oh, and my Russian pocket watch made a fine accessory. But enough of this banter. Here are the photos:

While at the ball, I met up with a group of my friends from high school. Here's Minni's awesome costume:

I also met up with some people from the LA-based fan group Tolkien Forever. They seem to pop up at all the geek events. Additionally, I ran into Kato, an acquaintance from MySpace (She's one of Dr. Steel's nurses! If you don't know what I'm talking about, go to and check it out). Plus, I made some new friends there! I spent a good deal of time wandering around with a nice girl named Meghan who was wearing an awesome Arwen dress.

I chatted for quite some time with David and Paloma Candelaria, who are two of the most brilliant costumers I've ever seen. They were so incredibly nice, and they were very encouraging to me as a budding costumer. If you don't know who they are, please check out their site at and prepare to be amazed.

I suppose that's all for now. More pics from the ball will come as they show up!