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Compositional Reality

Posted on April 24th, 2017

Dave!Did you know that yet another issue of Thrice Fiction Magazine will be debuting this month (hopefully)?

Well, it's true!

And while I don't want to give any of the awesome stories away, I thought I'd take a minute to share one of the art pieces I put together last night.

My favorite way of creating art to accompany a story is to draw, paint, or photograph something of my very own. But there are times that it's just not possible for what I'm trying to communicate. For one particular story in our next issue, I wanted to create a Bon Appetit magazine-style page. My vision was to have a kind of fried fish/prawn hybrid sitting on a plate in a Japanese restaurant... perhaps with a dollop of wasabi on the side. Being a vegetarian who hates seafood, the idea of putting fish parts in my deep-fat fryer filled me with horror, so I decided the best way to get what I wanted was to buy stock photos and assemble them into what I was envisioning.

And so I searched Adobe Stock for the pieces I needed...

Stock Photos

Then downloaded preview images into Photoshop so I could see if they would fit together well...

Rough Comp

Then, once I was happy with all the parts and pieces I found, I'd purchase the full-res photos and get to work. I had to combine three pieces of fried fish/prawns into one... add it to a plate with some wasabi and chopsticks... then paint in shadows to bring it all together and make it look "real-ish"...

Rough Comp

And voilĂ ! A fish-prawn thing is served!

To find out why it's served... you'll have to download the April issue of Thrice Fiction, coming soon!

   

Icing

Posted on February 27th, 2016

Dave!Wow.

This kind of artistry makes my heart ache...


   
Everything about these cookies is mesmerizing. I can only guess that they taste amazing as well...

   

Mezesmanna Cookies!

If you're looking to be completely blown away... here's her Facebook page.

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Bullet Sunday 452

Posted on December 6th, 2015

Dave!The holidays must be near, because the gift of Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• AVOID! I'd like to begin this entry with "Screw United Airlines," easily the worst airline going. They bring nothing but misery, and just don't give a fuck. I'd rather eat a piece of shit encrusted with pubic hair than to ever give United Airlines one cent of my money.

   
• Ware. Chris Ware is one of my favorite living artists. His work provides insight into the human condition in a way few people can match. This is his latest...

Chris Ware New Yorker Cover

As if that wasn't gift enough, a "behind the scenes" exploration of the cover has been ANIMATED over at the New York Times website. Absolutely worth a watch. Click here immediately to experience it.

   
• Rescue. Speaking of cats... essential viewing...

Catfishing! Amazing that somebody probably abandoned the poor things out there.

   
• SvB. Oh gawd. The Superman vs. Batman film looks even worse than I imagined. Even worse than the pile of shit that was Man of Steel. How could DC have fucked this up so bad? Oh... Zack Snyder... that's right. Let's overdramatize the shit out of even the most mundane moments. People love that. Barf...

This makes Superman IV: Quest for Peace look like total genius... because at least that turd had Gene Hackman in it. Jesse Eisenberg's "Lex Luthor" is a fucking embarrassment. I can't help but wonder if this movie fucking tanks... as it rightfully should... what happens to the DC cinematic universe? Hopefully it gets flushed down the toilet so somebody who gives a shit about the comics can start over.

   
• Regerts. A kitten who regretted his life choice...

Does it GET cuter than this?

   
• Diamonds. Dayamn! No pressure...

Marry Me Sounds So Much Better than Merry Christmas

And also... WAR AGAINST CHRISTMAS!!!

   
I'm spent. No more bullets for you.

   

THRICE 14.1

Posted on August 28th, 2015

Dave!Today's your lucky day! There's a brand-spanking-new (and FREE!) issue of Thrice Fiction out today!

As usual, I'll be discussing the artwork that went into our latest issue. This may or may not include spoilers for the stories, so I urge you to please read it before proceeding.

All done? Then... here... we... go...

Putting together the artwork for a non-profit magazine which relies solely on the generosity of its contributors is both a thrilling and frightening prospect. On one hand, you get to work with some amazingly talented people at the top of their game who regularly blow you away with their creativity and their kindness. On the other hand, people working for free can be an unreliable resource. And who can blame them? If a paying gig comes along that's going to take care of your rent and put food on your table, you drop everything and take the job. If you have an opportunity to do something that will advance your career as an artist, you drop everything and do it. Heck, even if it's something frivolous and fun that comes your way when the alternative is slaving away on something you're not getting paid for? Yeah, go for it. I get it. Honestly I do. And I try not to be upset when it happens, because that's just the way free work goes.

This month I had the grand ambition of letting our stable of "regulars" have an issue off. It's a busy summer for everybody, I've gotten plenty of new submissions for artwork, and it seemed a nice thing to do.

Except when all four of your new artists end up not working out. Then it's just plain folly.

Luckily for me, begging and pleading to Thrice Fiction staples Kyra, Katelin, and Chad were met with offers of help, or you'd be reading this is October. The fact that they not only took time out of their busy schedule to step up and bail me out... but that they did so at the last possible moment with a ridiculously short deadline is what I'm talking about when I say "amazingly talented people at the top of their game who regularly blow you away with their creativity and their kindness." Truly, from the bottom of my heart, thanks so much for your dedication to Thrice Fiction, which would be something entirely different if not for you.

And now for a look at the art that went into the first half of Issue No. 14...

Thrice Fiction No. 14

This installment's cover was dreamed up by yours truly. It came about as I was reading an article about the increasingly horrific consequences of all the "space junk" humans are leaving in orbit with breakfast one morning. Then, as I was driving to work, I saw that somebody had tossed a sack of McDonald's garbage on the road, and it occurred to me that it's only a matter of time before that stuff like this ends up in orbit as well. Yadda yadda yadda... heeeere's our cover! Originally I used a photo of that same McDonald's garbage (which I stopped and picked up) for the elements on the cover. But it wasn't blowing my socks off, so I decided to use a metal Coke can instead of the McPaper Cup since it reflects light better... and a previous photo of McDonald's fries that was more interesting than what I got. The background image is a photo I shot out of an airplane which has been layered with a starry night photo I took in Africa. All thirteen parts of the finished illustration were independently textured, shaded, then composited Photoshop.

It turned out rather good, if I do say so myself. If nothing else, it has terrific visual impact and a good sense of "What the heck?!?" which is what I like for our covers in the hopes that it makes people curious enough to download the magazine.

And now, for a look at the first half of the art included in this issue, read onward in an extended entry...

→ Click here to continue reading this entry...
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THRICE 13.2

Posted on April 28th, 2015

Dave!Welcome to PART TWO of a discussion about the art that's running in the latest issue of THRICE Fiction Magazine!

If you haven't read PART ONE yet, you should do that first.

And if you haven't downloaded a FREE copy of our April 2015 issue... then you should definitely do that first because, WARNING... SPOILERS MAY ENSUE!

THRICE Fiction No. 13

Putting together an issue of Thrice Fiction is no walk in the park. There's hours of work put into it from myself and others before it all comes together. Once all the art is in, I then get to assemble the Print PDF (for those wanting to purchase a printed copy at MagCloud), the Download PDFs (for those grabbing their FREE copy off our website), and the ePub/Kindle versions (for those who have an e-reader, also available FREE at our website). Then there's proofing, revising, and correcting... it goes on and on. Until it doesn't, then we're done.

There are times along the way where I ask myself "Is this really worth all the time and effort it takes to put this thing together?"

And then I take one look at the finished issue and the answer is always the same... yes, it most definitely is worth it. This issue was more difficult than usual, which made the finished magazine even more worth it.

And in four months we do it all again.

Now on with the second half of the art you'll find in our latest issue...

→ Click here to continue reading this entry...
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THRICE 13.1

Posted on April 27th, 2015

Dave!Lucky you! There's a brand-spanking-new (and FREE!) issue of Thrice Fiction out today!

As usual, I'll be discussing the artwork that went into our latest issue. This may or may not include spoilers for the stories, so I urge you to please read it before proceeding.

All done? Then off we go...

Our Editor at Large, RW, has long been lobbying to add some comics to Thrice Fiction. On the surface, this sounds easy. But finding the right comics to include in our pages is easier said than done. My first choice was the brilliant stuff that Reza Farazmand is doing over at Poorly Drawn Lines. Not only because I'm a huge fan... but because his work seemed the perfect "fit" for what we're doing.

Not that I expected he would say "yes," of course. Surely he has better things to do than hang out in our little lit mag, right? But nothing ventured, nothing gained, so I worked up some samples of how his work would be presented in Thrice and dashed off an email.

Much to my surprise and delight, Reza not only agreed to let us re-print some of his strips... he also agreed to re-work a panel from one of my favorite Poorly Drawn Lines comics as our cover! And that's how Small Cat came to end up fronting Issue No. 13...

Thrice Fiction No. 13

Glorious, is it not?

And now, for a look at the first half of the art included in this issue, read onward in an extended entry...

→ Click here to continue reading this entry...
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THRICE 12.1

Posted on January 2nd, 2015

Dave!Hey! Did you know there's a brand new issue of THRICE Fiction out?

Well, there is... and it's totally FREE! Click here to download a copy!

As usual, I'll be discussing the artwork that went into our latest issue. This may or may not include spoilers for the stories, so I urge you to please read it before proceeding.

All done? Then off we go...

This issue's beautiful cover was created by Allen Forrest. The guy has created a lot of covers for lit mags, and we're very lucky to have him gracing ours...

THRICE Fiction No. 12

I try to make sure there's artistic variety in our collection of cover art, and am rather embarrassed that we didn't have any impressionistic pieces yet. To have that oversight rectified with such a great painting is icing on the cake. Thanks so much, Allen!

And now, for a look at the first half of the art included in this issue, read onward in an extended entry...

   

→ Click here to continue reading this entry...
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