Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Royal Guard Teddy Troop

English Royal Guard Teddy Troop
So while I work on commission art, I try to work on a small, personal piece at the same time just to break things up a bit. Figuring I've got commissions lined up easily until the end of 2008, if I don't work on a few things for myself once in a while I'd go crazy. With that said, here's my latest "me" piece- a 4-inch custom Teddy Troop based on those famous English Royal Guards. This was one of those projects I'd had on my list for a while, I'd just never gotten around to working on it. I had kind of forgotten about this, and then I saw a photo of a royal guardsmen and the idea popped back into my head. I was hoping I'd be able to get the flocking on the helmet a little bit "shaggier", but I was happy with the way it turned out. This little guy will be going up in my web store pretty soon- he'd make a great late holiday gift :)

Monday, December 3, 2007

Totem Nintendo 64

Totem Nintendo 64
Here's some more totem goodness that I finished up this weekend. Yup, that's a Nintendo 64. When I was asked by the client if I would paint on a game console, I thought it was a pretty cool idea. So over came the shell of the machine (he removed all the electronics beforehand) and I got to it. It took a little while to figure out a good design for it, as I wanted to incorporate a mouth where you insert the game cartridge. Once that was set it was business as usual. The design changed a bit from my initial comp, but I'm definitely happy with the way this came out. I had a fun time working on this project, but now it's back to toys for a bit...

UPDATE: The Totem Nintendo 64 got a little press over on joystiq and on Digg- nice!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Sadly Beautiful Totem Skate Deck

Totem Skate Deck
It's been a while since my last post and I'm kind of bummed about that. I wanted to keep this going with at least two posts a month, but alas November was a bit too hectic for me to even sneak in a little time to post anything. My 9 to 5 has been more like a 9 to 9 (actually much worse) and I've been pulling 70-80 hour work weeks. Needless to say that really limited my time to pursue any artwork. Enough whining- the work storm cloud has passed and things seem to be back to normal, so I've been really trying to finish up some projects that have been in progress for way too long. First up is my Totem Skate Deck for the Sadly Beautiful show at Black Maria Gallery. This is the first time I've painted on a deck, and I must say it was quite fun. I have a few more blanks, so hopefully one of these days I can work on a few more. Anyway, everyone that's in LA next Saturday (Dec. 8th) should come check out this show. There will be a wide range of art at various price ranges- the goal being that there will be something for everyone. I'll be there- if you see me say hi.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

New Interview Up

I did an interview for the Custom Toy World website. Custom Toy World is a toy website created by Wonderworks, a design firm located in the Netherlands. The founder, Daan is an avid toy collector and owns a few of my customs. With that said, you can read my interview here.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Artist Formerly Known As...

So I finally got around to changing my username on the Kidrobot Discussion Board. Okay, so you didn't even know I wanted to change my name huh? Well, here's the story.
Back when I first joined the KR board in early 2006, I wanted to stick with a username I could easily remember. Well, since I used "ryanc44" for my Yahoo IM name/email (yes, now all you stalkers will be able to find me on IM now), I figured I'd use a modified version of that- hence rc44 was born.
Fast forward to about a year ago- as I started getting some recognition for my art and custom work through the board, I realized that my username is what people remembered me by, not necessarily by my real name. Then one day I just decided to Google "rc44" to see what popped up. Low and behold I had a few entries on the search results, but the majority were all about a racing sailboat. Huh? Yeah, that's what I was saying to myself. Anyway, I didn't give it much thought beyond that, and it faded away.
So fast forward to about two months ago. I started to notice that a few old people on the Kidrobot discussion board seemed to have new names. Now it didn't appear that they had created brand new accounts all over again, but in turn their old accounts had been updated with new names. This got me thinking. Why not see if I could get my current "sailboat" username updated to something actually meaningful- like my website name? Now that's an idea... So as of today, rc44 will only be known as a sailboat, and reactor88 is now the guy on the Kidrobot Discussion Board that makes all the Spade-Skull and Totem custom toys. Yeah, I figure it will confuse some people for a little bit, but that small setback will be worth it in the long run. Heaven forbid I decide to change the name of my website on day...

Friday, October 26, 2007

Miscellaneous Updates

With the sheer ease of adding new material and pics to this blog, I find that my website updates are fewer and farther between these days. With that said, I just updated my site will all my newest custom toys. And as usual, while spending a few hours processing images and setting it all up on my site, I start thinking about how in dire need my site needs a re-design. It's hard to believe I've had that site up in it's current form for almost 2 years now- in internet/computer time that's an eternity... Anyway, I'm setting a goal to at least have a "signed-off" new site design by the end of the year. Sounds easy enough, but I've been saying that for a few months now. We'll see.

On a side note, the good folks over at Flying Fortress have posted my recent 4-inch Totem Teddy Trooper on their blog. Sweetness! Now if only Adfunture would take some notice, maybe we'd see a production Totem Teddy one day...

I've also got an interview up over on Vinyl Addiction Vox Blog. Big ups to Matthew (aka Sandman) for posting all my gibberish.

Monday, October 15, 2007

New Custom Minis

Mini Spade-Skull Dunnys
Mini Totem Dunnys
Mini Flocked Spade-Skull Dunnys
Mini Mono Spade-Skull Dunny
Here's some new minis I've been working on over the past few months. Now these aren't commissions or for shows or anything like that- these were done just for fun. I like to work on minis while I'm working on bigger commissions, just to break it up a little bit. If I have someone on my commission list that wants a mini- it works out well. If not, then I just do them for myself. Since my big stuff can take months to finish, it's nice to spit out a little guy and get a little bit of instant gratification. Don't get me wrong, even my little guys can take weeks and weeks to finish- but that's usually because I'm only putting in a few minutes here and there. And usually with minis, I'm trying out ideas that I've been wanting to do for a long time. Take for instance what you have here. I've had flocking forever, and while I've flocked a few customs in the past, I really wanted to work on more. So that is how the two little flocked Spade-Skulls came to be. The totems- well, I always love working on those. But for minis I personally like the "duotone" style and have been creating a whole series of different colored ones. And of course, the regular Spade-Skull minis- these I just like making little variations, trying out new base colors and things. The red and blue ones both have a white pearlescent base coat, and the camo one is actually GID. And last but not least, there's a "mono" one- seems everybody has to have a mono colorway :) Fun stuff...

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Baby Totem Teddy Trooper

4-inch Totem Teddy Trooper
4-inch Totem Teddy Trooper
Here's my recent commission- a 4-inch Totem Teddy Trooper. Hopefully you aren't sick of seeing Totem customs, because everyone on my commission list sure isn't. Everybody wants a Totem- they're all the rage these days :) Anyway, this guy is tiny compared to the 10-inch one I finished a few months back. Even though he's a lot smaller, I tried to pack in as much detail as possible. The client wanted something with red, so I initially thought one of my "duotone" totems- red base with a black design. He then mentioned adding in white to the mix. Hmm- I wasn't sure how that would look, so I created a mock up of my sketch on the computer and created it with a red/white/black color scheme, and I must say I liked the results. So that sealed it, and off I went. As usual, the white paint needed about 4-5 coats to really get it to be opaque on the red, but the end result was definitely worth it. My favorite part of this little guy is the face on his backside- the little tongue sticking out makes me laugh...

Friday, October 5, 2007

Totem MadLs

Totem MadLs
Totem MadLs
I completed some new custom toys a few weeks back- this time it's a group of Totem MadLs. Surprisingly, these were all commissioned pieces for one person. I was surprised when I was first asked to create three of them (about a year ago) by this person. I thought he was kidding, but he was very serious. So I put his name on my list, and finally in early summer his name was at the top and I contacted him. I once again asked him if he was sure he wanted three, and once again he said yes. So fast forward a couple months later and these three Totems are complete. I think one of the intentions was to possibly have them stand on top of each other, but unfortnately the shape of the MadL head isn't completely level/flat on top, so that's not happening. I kind of wish I would've at least tried to take a pic with them stacked up on each other. Oh well, I guess I'll leave that to their new owner. Note, these guys are traveling half-way around the world- I think this was my first international commission work. So does that mean I've "gone international"? Nice...

Monday, September 17, 2007

I'm Now A Photojournalist

So Saturday night I went to Shag's Conspicious Consumption show at Billy Shire Fine Arts. The good folks over at Guillotine asked if I'd help them out and take a few pics of the show. Guillotine is a pretty cool French Art/Toy/Sneaker/Lifestyle site that has these neat photo features of artist's studios- that's how I came to be familiar with their site. Anyway, I got to the show early to make sure I could get some good "uncrowded" pics, and shot away with my trusty old point 'n shoot digital camera. You can see the photos here. Not bad if I do say so myself- maybe I have a new career starting here...

Addendum- the good folks over at Vinyl Pulse heard I went to the Shag show as well, so I shared my pics with them too. You can experience deja vu here.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Totem Lunchbox

Totem Lunchbox
Yes, the Totem art just keeps on coming. Here's a hand-painted lunchbox currently on display at Monkeyhouse Toys for "Recess - A Custom Lunchbox Show." I had many different ideas for this project as I wanted to try a few different things. I sketched a bunch of ideas out, but ultimately came back to a native design style. I stopped by the opening this past Saturday and was impressed to see such a large turnout. I didn't hang out too long (I've got the flu bug right now) but I'm glad I stopped by to give my support. If you're in the Silverlake area you should check out the show- there's a lot of great work.

New Dunny Commission

Totem Dunny
I just finished a new commission this weekend. It's an 8-inch Dunny with a traditional NW Native American design. For this custom the design actually has a theme to it. I gave it a bear face on the front, and then on the back I designed my rendition of one of the more famous traditional Native American folk tales about the bear mother and cub. So the face on the back of the head is my rendition of the mother, and on the body is the bear cub in the womb. Surrounding all of these main elements are the usual traditional shapes and designs. Interestingly enough, this is actually the first 8-inch Dunny I've customized. It definitely won't be the last though...

Totem Skate Deck and T-Shirt Design

Totem Deck and T-Shirt Design
A while back I was randomly contacted by this little European skateboard company called Carrot Skateboards. They liked my art and asked me to create a deck and t-shirt design for them, so I whipped this up a while back. If all goes well I should get some samples of both. Pretty cool.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Vinyl Requiem Issue #2

Vinyl Requiem Issue Two
So the kind folks over at Vinyl Requiem asked me if I wanted to submit some photos of my customs for their magazine. A few months later issue number two of their vinyl toy magazine is out and my Aqua Blossom Qee is featured on the cover- sweet. I haven't seen the mag yet, but I'm sure it's pretty cool. It's nice to see my Aqua Blossom getting some love. He's one of my favorite customs that I've done, mainly for the fact that it's so different than what I usually do. Anyway, you can pick up issue two at Lulu Press as either a printed version or a pdf download.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Look What I Found

Tofu Space Robot
So I happened to be digging around in my parent's attic and found this cool little metal toy buried under a pile of old tin cans. He's taken quite a beating through the years, but is still holding up. Okay seriously, this is my custom Tofu Robot for the upcoming Tofu Robot show at Robocon. I'd seen a couple of custom toys lately that had this old, worn-out, tin toy style, and it really caught my eye as I definitely enjoy vintage (real and faux) stuff. I'd taken a crack at a "griming" up a toy last year when I made my Recon-bot MadL, so this was just taking it a step further by actually giving it some real scratches, scuffs, and scrapes. I also (for the first time) used some enamel spray paints (from my old model kit days) for the finish, and used some little homemade templates for the designs on the body of the robot. So I definitely explored some new territory with this little guy.
Anyway, the show at Robocon is coming up later this month, so if you're in the area come check it out.

Spade-Skull Labbit

Spade-Skull Labbit
So here's my finished 5-inch Labbit for the upcoming Uberbot Labbit show. I was literally putting a couple finishing touches on it this morning, took these photos, packed it up, and dropped it off at the post office this morning- since the deadline to get it over to them is next Monday. I've been wanting to do a Totem Labbit for ages (I've had a 10-incher primed up and sitting on my desk for ages), but with the time constraints I was under for this show, a Spade-Skull it had to be. Even still, these things take a long time. I had a few issues with the yellow, and since I used a flourescent orange, once again many, many coats of paint were necessary. In the end, I really liked how this guy turned out- hopefully everyone else will too.

A few more pics of this little guy can be found over on the Kidrobot Discussion Board here.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Totem Teddy Trooper

Totem Teddy Trooper
Totem Teddy Trooper
FINALLY! I've been working (on/off) on this guy for months (and months), so with the photos I took today I am officially saying I'm done with this beast. Needless to say when I took on this commission last year (yes, it's been that long) I didn't really know what I was getting into. I knew it was a bigger toy at 10 inches tall, but I didn't really take into consideration that it would be like painting two customs- the bear and the helmet, as they both by themselves are the size of the standard vinyl toy (7-8 inches.) And because of the sheer size and workable area of this guy, I would say it's my most complex and detailed totem custom yet. Anyway, I could've probably kept working and working and working on this guy, but I felt it was time to put the paint down, and send him off to his new home. More pics can be found on the Kidrobot Message Board. It even made it's way on the Flying Fortress blog- sweet.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Sticker Shock

Spade-Skull stickers
So I finally got some stickers made. I'm not sure why it took so long- probably just blatant procrastination. I've always wanted to make some, but never really knew much about the process, where to go, etc. I guess with the sticker explosion in the last few years and prices coming down for folks like me that don't want a gagillion stickers, it was time to really investigate and get these puppies made. Plus I finally had something I could legitimately make into a sticker- my little Spade-Skull icon. After finding a fairly inexpensive, local sticker place (one of those word of mouth kind of things), I pulled the trigger. I went with some basic, one UV color rounds on white vinyl to start- kind of a trial run thing. Next time I'll probably go die-cut, clear vinyl with crack & peel backings, but since I have 500 of these, next time is gonna be a while. Anyway, these little guys will find there way into all the packages I send out to clients, and who knows where else...

Monday, July 16, 2007

Dawg with Fez & Uberbot Super Labbit Show

Woof!
It's been a while since I've posted on my blog. Well, I guess two weeks isn't that long compared to some, but for me I like to have some sort of update every week, so it's fair to say I'm slacking. Anyway, I finished this up last week, and I just shipped it off to it's new home in paradise i.e.- Hawaii. Some backstory on "Dawg with Fez." In my quest to get back into traditional painting a few years ago, I made some little "test" paintings of some characters/doodles from my sketchbook just to get the feel of it again. Anyway, someone perusing my website saw the original mini-Dawg painting and inquired about purchasing him. Well, since the masonite panel I painted the original Dawg on wasn't prepared properly, I didn't feel comfortable selling it, as the painting might "disintegrate" in a few years- hence no more Dawg. But I did agree to do a larger, commission for the client based on the original Dawg painting- and so Dawg with Fez was born. I also included a sweet little sketch of a concept for the original Dawg painting from my sketchbook, but like a moron I didn't scan it in before I sent it off- I really need to start to remember documenting my sketches and stuff...

And on a side note, I've reluctantly decided to participate in the Uberbot Super Labbit show slated for late August. I know, I know- I'm so backlogged with commissions and other shows that I would be insane to get involved with another show, but I've really wanted to customize a 5" Labbit ever since they came out, and I love the name Uberbot. Yeah, I'm crazy. So all you on my commission list that have been patiently waiting months and months and months- sorry. Trust me, it'll all be worth the wait...

Monday, July 2, 2007

Love : Hate

Flocked Cuties
So here are my Baby Bunee Qees for the Love : Hate show presented by Subtext and Cardboard Spaceship. So by now some of you are looking at them and probably saying, "where are the skulls?" "where's the Totem-style designs?" Well, while I love creating designs based around my Spade-Skull icon and Native Northwestern Indian art, I like to mix things up a bit as well. I've been wanting to do another flocked project ever since I did my holiday custom last year, and I also wanted to do something kind of "cutesy." This little pair of Qees seemed to be the perfect candidates. I think it was very fitting for this show, just for the fact that I figure some people will love these, and some people will hate them- ha. Either way, they were a lot of fun to make (look for more flocked projects in the future.) Even if mine aren't your style, there's a big line-up of artists participating in this show, and I've seen some of the other pieces and they're top notch. So if you're down in San Diego during SDCC this month, take a breather from the convention and check this show out- you won't be disappointed.

Friday, June 29, 2007

My Workspace

What a mess...
Every now and then I like to take a picture of my workspace. It's kind of neat to look at the past pictures and see the projects on the desk, what's on the computer screen, and the various levels of general disarray. Anyway, someone was asking a questioon on the Kidrobot message board about what type of desk/art table, supplies, storage units etc. they should purchase to start on their toy customizing career. Well, I started to type a reply, then I thought- hey, it's been a while since I took a workspace photo, so I did. I then posted the pic, told him how this was probably more of an example of how not to do, and then put in my 2 cents. Anyway, he seemed pretty grateful, so I guess it helped somebody.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Spade-Skull Munny

Spade-Skull Munny
So I just finished up my custom Spade-Skull Munny for the Lift Footwear Detroit Munny show. The show is this Sat (the 23rd) and pieces were supposed to be there by the 18th, but folks were given a little wiggle room. I think they were a little more flexible with the deadline because this event was organized at the last minute and not much of a heads-up was given to the artists. When I was first asked to participate in this show, I was very hesitant to get on board because of the short notice. But I decided to get on board and see what I could do under the gun. Anyway, my goal was to finish it this weekend (which I did), and it will be out in the mail tomorrow morning headed priority over to Michigan. I'm still quite amazed I was able to finish this in only about 3 weeks- I usually work a lot slower :) I'm also kind of hoping a few folks on my commission list take notice of this piece and pick it up from the show. Mainly because they're on my list for a Spade-Skull Munny, and if they grabbed this guy that would knock someone off my every increasing list. UPDATE- show blurb is up on Vinyl Pulse- nice, my Munny gets a preview alongside of Dok-A's piece- talk about being in good company...

So with this guy complete, it's on to finish up my pair of baby Qee customs for the Love & Hate show next month and hopefully start plugging away at that commission list before it gets unmanageable...

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Reactor-88 Update

Reactor-88
Since I've been really busy painting toys and canvases for a bunch of upcoming shows and trying to plug away at my commission list, my website has been neglected. So it was about time for a bit of an update. I added my recent Cereal Killers "Cereal Totem" painting to the Artwork section. I also added a Shows and Events section and a Store section. Since I'm participating in a lot of shows this year (and hopefully that will continue) I decided to devote an entire section of my website just to listing all my past, present and future shows/events. Also, since I now have a few items sitting around that aren't sold that might be of interest to some folks, I've decided to put up a store section as well. Note, it's nothing fancy at all- just pics, a price, and who to contact if you want to buy it. Works for me...

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Cereal Killers

Cereal Totem
So the Cereal Killers show was last night at Monkeyhouse Toys. As expected, there were lots of great pieces (mostly paintings, only a couple of custom toys) and there was a pretty good turnout- Monkeyhouse is definitely getting more popular now that they are on the Kidrobot message board radar. A lot of the usual suspects were in attendance, so it was good talking to some of the old regulars. A few of my favorite pieces were Dave Pressler's "Monkey Vomit" painting, and Jenna Colby's "Girl on a Cornflake"- that wasn't the actual name, but whatever. Of course my buddy Lou Pimentel killed his pieces, and since I like the old fashioned-type stuff, Betso's piece definitely caught my eye. So if you're in the Silverlake area, I highly recommend you head over to Monkeyhouse and check out the show- you won't be disappointed. If you can't make it, be sure you check out the show coverage and pics on Vinyl Pulse.

Big thanks to Bil Betsovic (and a Happy Birthday shout out) for inviting me to participate in this show, and of course Mayra at Monkeyhouse Toys for hosting it.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Big Dawg

16-inch Dog Qee16-inch Dog Qees are big
So when I dropped off my Cereal Totem painting this past Saturday I picked up another 16-inch Qee. I still can't get over how big these things are. The second pic was taken next to my 8-inch Kenzo Dunny just for reference- yeah, I guess it is basically twice as big... Once again it was free, but this one was actually given to me for an upcoming commission. I can't divulge any other details about the project as I always treat my commissions like I'm under an NDA- some folks don't care, but just in case I extend the courtesy. Anyway, I'm really excited to start working on this bad boy. The client has some basic guidelines as far as what they want, but for the most part I can take as much creative freedom as I want with it (I think.) As usual, I'll sketch out some ideas on some Qee templates, and once I'm in agreement with the client the fun will begin. But as usual, this project is still a little bit off on the horizon. I need to finish a couple customs for some upcoming shows, finish a couple of current commissions, then I can begin to brainstorm about this one. I can't wait...

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Art Toy Alchemists Show

Totem Mini
So last night was the Art Toy Alchemists Show down at Artifact Unmundane. I had no idea there was a place to buy vinyl down in the O.C. until PJ had contacted me and asked me to be in the show. What a hidden gem for the folks down there. It's located in a very industrial area down in Anahiem, probably not where you'd think to find a vinyl shop. Anyway, the turnout was pretty good and there were a lot of great pieces in the show. The highlight of the show was the Mr. Bunny raffle. Now, anyone into vinyl toys knows how sought after a Mr. Bunny is. Well, I don't consider myself a lucky guy so I usually don't enter raffles and such, but the raffle proceedings were going towards helping the Cipriani family (Ava's parents), so I grabbed the last $5 bill I had in my wallet and bought a few tickets. Low and behold, I won the Mr. Bunny! And to think I even questioned whether I wanted to make the drive down to Anahiem for the show- hehe... Anyway, once again there were many great pieces in the show. I think my highlights were Jason Jacenko's Circus Punk, Motorbot's Bunniguru, a Frankenstein Munny, and Daniel Damocles Wall's beautiful flocked Giraffe Dunny. I'm guessing PJ will be putting all the pieces up on his website shortly. There's still lots of pieces for sale. In the meantime, see below for a few of my favorites, and of course a shot of my new Mr. Bunny :)
Giraffe Dunny
Franken Munny
Jason Jacenko Circus Punk
Motorbot's White Rabbit
Custom Munny
Spade-Skull Icebot
Mr. Bunny

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Detroit Munny Show

So it looks like I'll be participating in the "2nd Annual" (I just made that part up) Detroit Munny Show at Lift Footwear next month. Yeah, next month is coming up fast. I was asked to participate last week, and hesitantly agreed. I usually require a few months (if not longer) of lead time before I'll commit to any show, but at the same time I really enjoy participating when I can, and I figure I can get something together in 3 weeks (I hope.) I've already warned the curators there will be no Totem (those take me months), but there might be the first ever Spade-Skull Munny- unless I can think of something cooler that I can pull off on short notice.

The Cereal Totem

Cereal Totem
I finally finished my painting for the upcoming Cereal Killers show at Monkeyhouse Toys. It's a 10x30 acrylic on canvas. This is actually the first "real" painting I've done in years. Well, I guess I did do a small series of random masonite panels last year, but this actually felt like a real painting- maybe because it took forever to finish (which probably isn't very evident at first glance.) Anyway, it was a lot of fun, but I think I'll get back to some smaller painting- it seems I just don't have the patience that I used to back in college. And to think I used to paint with oils...

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Custom Dumb Dummy Totem


Here's a little (and I mean little) custom commission I just completed. In case you aren't familiar with this figure, it's a Dumb Dummy created by Toby HK. This little one was a serious pain to paint. For some reason I seem to have more trouble painting on toys with flat surfaces, as opposed to the curved ones- I really don't know why. Add it the size factor on this (these are about 1"x1.5"x1") and that's a mixture for some serious hand cramp and blurry eyes. Anyway, as with most minis that I paint, this was done in small "spurts" between some my bigger projects, so it actually wasn't too bad.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Vinyl Elements Show


So the Vinyl Elements show was last night, and I must say it was a very cool show. There were tons of great customs, including my Water Totem BUD. Artists were also on hand, kicking back and talking with all the fans. Even better, Munky King held a raffle for three of the much sought after exclusive Black Possessed toys. And no, this wasn't just the original idea of the guarantee to be able to get one, they were giving them away for free! No waiting in line, no cost! FREE!! So three people left the show very happy that night. Anyway, I just want to thank Jack for inviting me to participate in the show- I was honored to be a part of it and have my work displayed with some of the top toy customizers/artists in the scene. For pics of the show, be sure to check out the Vinyl Pulse's write-up.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Upcoming Show Listing

While trying to organize and prioritize my projects, I've been looking over my calendar and realized I'm in quite a few shows coming up pretty soon. Wow, I am really in over my head with this stuff. I need to stop blogging and get to work!

Vinyl Elements
May 17th, 2007
Barracuda (Los Angeles, CA)

Art Toy Alchemists
June 2nd, 2007
Artifact Unmundane (Anahiem, CA)

Cereal Killers
June 9th, 2007
Monkeyhouse Toys (Los Angeles, CA)

Detroit Munny Show
June 23rd, 2007
Lift Footwear (Detroit, MI)

Love and Hate
July (SDCC) 2007
Subtext (San Diego, CA)

Tofu Robot Show
August 2007
Robocon (Los Angeles, CA)

Social Tilt and Urban Vinyl
September 7th, 2007
Arthouse (Calgary, Alberta, Canada)

I think I'm also participating in a custom painted lunchbox show at Monkeyhouse Toys coming up sometime this year. Either that, or a blank metal lunchbox has sprouted from underneath my work table. Okay, enough chit chat- back to work...

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Art Toy Alchemists Show

So I mentioned this a few posts earlier, but I'm in the upcoming Art Toy Alchemists show down at Artifact Unmundane in Anahiem, CA. I'll have my Spade-Skull IceBot and an older 3-inch Totem Dunny I made a while back. I finally saw the "flyer" for the show, and the line-up is looking pretty good. I'm hoping to cruise down there for the opening on June 2nd. I also heard a rumor that they might be having a Wheaty Wheat Mr. Bunny giveaway. Whoa- that should bring in a crowd...

Totem Trooper is Coming...


Even though I really need to finish my painting for the upcoming Cereal Killers show, I was having a bit of a mental block on it (changing gears again), so I decided to put it aside this weekend and get going on my next commission- an Adfunture 10" Teddy Troop. I had finalized the design and color scheme a while back with the client, so I figured this weekend I could take some time and actually apply the design to the toy. I didn't really think about it before, but this is almost the equivalent of doing two 7" customs. Since you can remove the helmet, it can be considered one custom, and the teddy the other. Well, all I know is next time I will have to take that into consideration when I give a quote :) Live and learn...
Anyway, I feel like a fairly large milestone has been hit with this piece. Seeing the design on paper is one thing, but when you actually have it all laid out on the toy is cool. Now it just needs a light sanding, another coat of priming (to reduce the lines a bit), and it will be ready for paint. But first, I have to finish my Cereal Killers piece- no worries though, I'm scrapping all my previous comps/ideas and going with a new idea that just came to me this evening. I can't believe I didn't think of it in the first place...

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Big Rump Vinyl

Big Rump Qee Bear
I got a big rump vinyl DIY Qee Bear on Sunday. First off, you're probably asking why I said "big rump". Well, on the Kidrobot messageboard, they've got some sort of word substitutor that exchanges any "bad" words you type and posts alternate words. Most people swear to evoke some sort of emphasis with what they say, so I find it pretty funny that those words usually get substituted with some sort of toned down version. For instance, ass = rump. So if I were to say Big Ass Vinyl, the message board would translate that to Big Rump Vinyl. Funny. Anyway, I totally digressed there. What you're seeing in the picture is my new buddy- a 16" DIY Qee Bear that (best part) I got for free. Yes free. Well, not quite- I did have to take a painting break on Sunday and drive down to the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica and take part in the "Find the Boo" contest that a fellow Kidrobot message board member put on. Surprisingly, I came in second, but still won the (literally) biggest prize that was offered. Once again, big thanks to Mark (you know who you are) for going out of his way and setting up this fun little Sunday afternoon jaunt.

New Stuff

So I've finally finished up some new customs, so I thought I'd share. Now don't you feel special? First pic- a sneak peak of my piece for the upcoming Vinyl Elements show. I guess I could show the whole thing since no one really reads my blog, but hey, you never know. I don't want to upset Jack... I just packed this up to send over. Hopefully when they receive it they'll take some real pictures of it. My little digital point/shoot just isn't quite up to take studio/product shot-type pictures.
The second pic is my Spade-Skull IceBot that I painted for the Art Toy Alchemists show at Artifact Unmundane. Where is this you ask? It's down in Anahiem- yes, I was surprised when I found out there was a vinyl shop in Anahiem too. This world is full of surprises. I'm pretty sure I'll be driving down for the opening night- as long as it's on the weekend.
The third pic, are some fun little mini customs I've been working on. I call them my Spade-Skull Metal Series. It sounded cooler than saying Gold, Silver, Copper. Anyway, all three of these little guys sold at my "online preview." It's pretty scary when someone like me is setting up "online previews" by request. Like I said, this world is full of surprises...

Monday, April 23, 2007

Vinyl Elements Show

Flyer Front
Vinyl Pulse's big custom vinyl show, VInyl Elements is coming May 17th, 2007. I've seen some sneak peaks of some of the pieces, and by the looks of the artist list this should be a really good show. Here's the details from the Vinyl Pulse website:

Vinyl Elements brings the excitement back on Thursday May 17th @ Barracuda from 7 to 10 PM. The elements the ancient Chinese believed to make up the universe Metal, Wood, Water, Fire and Earth form the show's theme. This classic theme will be interpreted by a select international group of fifty top-flight artists including David Horvath, Frank Kozik, Nathan Cabrera (for SURU), Tado, Tim Tsui, tokidoki, Touma and more. Flyer BackRather than working on one identical platform, this stellar group will present their wide range of styles and techniques across twelve different vinyl figures. Vinyl Elements, a must-not-miss event, delivers the essential elements to showcase the very best in custom toy art, piece by piece from the first to the last.

Sounds impressive, huh? With that, I really need to finish up my piece. I'm customizing a 9" Jamungo BUD- I'll try to get a couple of sneak peaks up soon...

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Tofu Robot

Hi! I'm a naked Tofu Robot
So yesterday I went down to Robocon in Chinatown to pick up a Tofu Robot. Created by the good folks at Spicy Brown, this little guy stands about four inches tall and has five points of articulation (I think that's just a fancy way of saying his head, arms and feet move.) Anyway, they usually have this little tofu graphic on the belly, but mine is blank because I'm participating in a Custom Tofu Robot show at Robocon's gallery later this summer. Is everyone ready for Totem Tofu? Sorry, I couldn't resist.

I Want Your Skull Issue #2

I Want Your Skull
So issue #2 of the zine, "I Want Your Skull" dropped this weekend. Once again yours truly graces the pages of this cool skull art-based zine. Ryan August (the brainchild behind it) did a great job on the first issue, and this one looks to be just as good. It also comes with a lot of extra goodies, and the packaging is top notch. This will probably sell out just as quick as issue #1 did, so jump on this folks.