Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Toon Tuesdays: ACEO #001

ACEO comic #1

  This comic was constructed out of a short set of ACEOs (Art Cards Editions and Originals) I made. I'm hoping to make more of these on a monthly basis. These toons might be in comic format or even a short animation. I will auction off each set in my AUCTIONS page up above. (ACEO #001 is the first comic I've ever done in this format, and is up for auction on the a-fore mentioned page)  

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Best Paper Store For Artists In Los Angeles: Part 2

Jump to Part 1
Jump to Part 3
  Back in October I wrote about my two favorite shops in Los Angeles McManus & Morgan and Aardvark Letterpress. (Best Paper Store For Artists In Los Angeles: Part 1) As divine forces would have it, film maker Ben Proudfoot made a short documentary about these two shops recently, and I found out that the final version is posted on his Vimeo page. Watch the full short film above.
  I can't tell you how amazing these two shops are especially when they work together on their client's creative projects. You should not take my word for it at all. You must go visit them. They are next door neighbors on 7th and Carondelet Street in MacArthur Park. I stop in quite often and talk to Gary, one of the shop owners, about business. It astounds me how many artists don't know about this incredible resource. As you can see in the video above they are struggling to survive. What a tragedy it would be if we ever lost either, or both, of these establishments. Go check them out only if you want your creative limits to be blown apart and splattered all over the floor.

Jump to Part 1
Jump to Part 3

Sunday, December 11, 2011


We take ownership of our favorite specialists. "My barber", "My lawyer", "My tailor", "My publicist" - Shad K is my Hip Hop MC
These are the specialists in our lives, but for me the list doesn't seem to be complete. This got me thinking- Hip Hop is very important to me. If I were to call someone "My MC" who would it be? This MC would have to have skills with free-styling, battling, recording, performing, writing, playing instruments, realizing their words must speak into the past present and future among many other things. Who would my MC specialist be?
Gil Scott Heron has the historical vote. KRS One pretty much has it all (but the kids these days aren't ready for him). Who is the Hip Hop MC that has it all for today's day in age? Shad K is that MC right now for me.

Shad has the Punch-Lines, here's proof:

Shad has profound lyricism down:

This MC even tips his hat to the old "Boom Bap" days of Hip Hop (like Drop from the Pharcyde)

He's got his freestyles on lock too

No doubt he has a great stage presence as-well

Ok, that's enough said. Appreciate your MCs whoever they are.

Sign Up For My New Mailing List

  Today I'm announcing my brand new mailing list. Take a look over at the right side bar. You'll find a simple sign up field for the newsletter. If you sign up you receive e-mails regarding updates on...
My latest prints

 ACEO/ATC auctions

vintage book sales

Graffiti pieces

ATC trading posts

hidden art installations

art shows

and caricature events

You will be updated on everything having to do with my art. This is all valuable information for those of you who have invested in my work already and have been following my brand. Please join me in all of the fun!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

My Second Self Portrait ACEO Auction

  The tired face you see above is mine. This is a genuine expression of how I feel at the moment. I posted this ACEO up for auction yesterday and titled it 1% (Self Portrait). "1%" is partially a reference to the current Occupy movement happening in various places including Wall Street and London. While I am very grateful for the people speaking up for all of us I will still argue that almost all of us in the U.S. are the 1% in relation to the poverty that 99% of the world faces every day. I do officially support the masses speaking out against Wall Street though. 
"1%" also refers to the amount of energy I have left in the face of not having a job, but having a broken car, and possibly nowhere to live. Estoy muy consado.  
Please take a look at this auction along with a few others. Be quick because they only have a few days left, and this is only my second self portrait for those of you following my line of ACEOs.

Friday, October 28, 2011

New Original Painting Up For Special Halloween Auction

 (Pictures of the art currently being auctioned)

Head over to my Auctions section at the top of the screen to bid on this original piece. This auction only has 9 days and 23 hours left before it's over.

The Story:
One of the students in my neighborhood (Pico Union) donated their broken skate-deck to me so I could paint on it. Because this board has been involved in too many board slides to count on every street surface in our downtown area I thought I would paint a prayer for the city on it. The image depicts death losing it's sting over the city of Los Angeles in the background. The jagged crack was used to form the city skyline. This is my prayer for Los Angeles and your city.

Happy bidding and Happy Halloween!

The Best Paper Store For Artists In Los Angeles: Part 1

Jump to Part 2
Jump to Part 3

If you're an artist in the Los Angeles, California area I'm about to let you in on a great trade secret...

This is McManus & Morgan paper store at 2506 W. 7th St near downtown (the oldest art store in LA)...

and this is Aardvark Letterpress also on W. 7th St 

They are next-door to each other.

Both of these store-fronts are highly specialized. McManus & Morgan excels at listening to each artist that comes in and finding the best paper possible for their unique projects. They carry paper from 25 different countries, many of them being hand crafted, and they are able to order whatever they don't have in stock. McManus & Morgan also carries vintage books, post cards, and magazines as-well as hand crafted envelopes and ephemera. Aardvark obviously specializes in letterpress printing. There is no single component of letterpress print making that their technicians don't know about. Having these two resources in such close proximity to each other is a power house of a resource for any creative. 

High end event planners have been using this duo for years creating invitations on behalf of companies like: Adidas, AMC, and Guess Jeans. There are some samples below, but you should visit McManus & Morgan and ask to browse through the staggering amount of invitations they have made with Aardvark. I guarantee you'll be inspired.

 (AMC invite to premiere of Madmen season 4)

 (Guess Jeans invite utilizing paper with a mirror finish)

 (letters pressed into real leather)

 (invite to launch of David Beckham's clothing line)

Check out what Aardvark Letterpress and McManus & Morgan did to print the CD covers for Gillian Welch's award winning album the Harrow & the Harvest.

Jump to Part 2
Jump to Part 3

Monday, October 10, 2011

BJØRN Webcomic Sketches

Hello fair readers! It's Monday which means more art needs to be posted on the blog. Above you see some concept sketches for my new webcomic BJØRN. For the purposes of longevity in drawing page after page of a comic, I'm forcing myself to keep the style minimal yet delicate. I like playing with shapes while building a character's form. 
The first sketch shows a hunter of some sort. I think I will simplify his design much more over the coming days, but more or less that's what he will look like. The bear will be huge. I want the bear to be both a quadruped and a biped in the story.
Last Monday I posted the cover page of the comic. Next Monday I will be posting the first page. Please come back and follow this journey into story telling. 

Monday, October 3, 2011

BJØRN Web Comic: Cover

Today I'm announcing the start of my first web comic titled "BJØRN". Above is the cover which is the first installment. I have to be realistic with my schedule and workflow, so I will be posting new pages the first and third Monday of every month. This comic is designed to be open ended which means I will keep the a-fore mentioned schedule when I have an idea for a story-line. One short story might finish within a few pages, and I'll start again as I get more ideas. Along the way I'll be posting sketches and concept work here and there. I hope you'll join me in the adventures ahead.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Creepy New ACEO Auctions Posted!!!!

Nosfuratu ACEO Auctioning now!

Hello art fans! October is a few days away, and that means one of my favorite holidays is coming up- All Hallows Eve. Most of the ACEOS (Art Cards Editions & Originals) that I've posted for auction have a Halloween theme to them of some sort. There are ominous birds like ravens and crows, as well as my take on some popular monsters. Click on the "AUCTIONS" link above to see my ebay store. Remember to check often. I post all new and original ACEOS on ebay every 10 days or so. (this time I was really late. Sorry)

While I'm on the topic of ACEOs, I hope you don't mind me addressing a question that I get a lot on this blog and in my travels. Many people are still asking what an ACEO or ATC is. Below is a video that may lack quality in audio picture and editing, but it explains the ATC ACEO movement quite well. Maybe someday I will make my own video explanation. I hope this video clears up all of the confusion...

Monday, September 19, 2011

My ACEOs Thus Far

My goal is to offer the best quality in original art in fun one-of-a-kind formats. 
The slideshow above displays my more popular Art Cards Editions & Originals (ACEOs) to date as-well as some current ones that are up for auction in my AUCTIONS section right now. Over the last month some of the bids went over $5. I want to thank everyone who has supported my work. Please spread the word and visit my blog, auctions, and shop regularly.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

7 New ACEOs Posted On My Ebay

  Above is a sample of the ACEOs that are up for auction now on my ebay account. The drawing is of a B-girl (break-dancer) that I found a picture of among my files of the old days when I actually had time to go to Hip Hop shows.
  I apologize to those who were waiting for this batch. This time around I was a little late. I'll do my best to keep things on track from now on.
  Don't forget that you can click on my "Auctions" link at the top of the page to access my ebay storefront any time. Again, I'll do my best to keep posting new original ACEOs every 10 days (no repeats ever).

-John T

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

New ACEO Auctions Up Soon

I apologize to everyone for not having new ACEO's posted on my Ebay account. I've been feeling under the weather, so I will have to finish and post them whenever I have more energy. Thank you for your patience.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Tommy Cinquegrano

(None of the work in this post is mine.)
Tommy Cinquegrano is an artist who has worked in video games for THQ, Electronic Arts, and Activision to name a few. I happened upon his art while searching for some inspiration for four color screen prints. One of the gems I found was his warehouse series pictured above. I knew I had to share these pieces as soon as I saw them. I love the texture of these urban facades. The simple white space around the buildings off-sets the intricate information within the images of the buildings. His collage style has a great rhythm to it that makes me want to scan each facet of the buildings like you would scan a page in a Where's Waldo book. Well done Tommy Cinquegrano.

Monday, August 29, 2011

New Art Show In LA During September

I'm curating this art show along with Evelin Gonzalez. The artists featured in this show are all local graffiti and street artists whom we think you should all be introduced to. Please join us for a fun night as we open the show on Sept 10th from 7Pm to 10. The opening event and the month long show will be held at Mama's Hot Tamales in Los Angeles.

Mama's Hot Tamales Cafe
2124 W 7th St
Los Angeles, CA 90057
Neighborhood: Westlake
(213) 487-7474

Sketch Hidden At the Alcove Cafe

At the Alcove Cafe on Hillhurst Ave. in L.A. I hid a sketch in this drawer. I think I might be hiding more artwork here in the future. Could this be a possible grassroots ATC trading spot?

The food and service is great. My advice to you if you ever go looking for this sketch is to get the buffalo chicken wrap (mine was without coleslaw). My girlfriend had the jerk chicken sandwich which was also pretty bomb.

Alcove Cafe & Bakery
1929 Hillhurst Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Neighborhood: Griffith Park/Los Feliz
(323) 644-0100

New ACEO Prints For Sale

(To purchase, click on the SHOP link at the top of this page)
In my last post I mentioned some limited ACEO prints I have for sale in my shop. I was in a rush, so I didn't have a chance to offer any details or pictures. Well, here are the details and here are the pictures!

The original Lion ACEO was auctioned off a few months ago, and proved to be one of my more popular art cards. There will only ever be 15 prints of this collectible. Each card has a smooth gloss finish, and is a thick durable card-stock. I will never use this image again in any of my future pieces or products. Once these are gone they are gone. As you can see above, each card is signed and numbered on the back. The cards will be sold in numerical order which means the first buyer gets card number 1 and so on. Order early so you can get a lower number in this limited run.

I plan on making a limited print run on other popular ACEOs of mine in the future. This should raise the values of the originals. Make sure your keeping an eye on the original ACEOs up for auction by clicking on the AUCTIONS link at the top of the page.

Thank you to all who have purchased my ACEOs in the past. I sincerely hope you have enjoyed the new editions to your collections.

-John T

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Theory Hazit and A Red Doberman

Pictured above is an ACEO I drew of Hip Hop MC Theory Hazit. "I've never heard of him," you say- well that's exactly my point in drawing him. Google this guy's name. Listen to his music; especially the track "We Are The Ones." ... You're welcome.

Since this is a preview of yet another original ACEO, you must know what time it is. Yes, I finally posted 7 new ACEOs up for auction on ebay. Click on my AUCTIONS link at the top of this site to see all of them. Among others, I have drawings of a red doberman, Billie Holiday, Budgie Birds, and even the rare abstract piece.
Remember to come back every 10 days for more original one-time art pieces up for auction. I settled into my new place so sorry for the delay this month.

Psssst Check out my SHOP link at the top of this page too. I have a limited print run for sale on my Etsy shop. There are only 15 of them. Enjoy shopping my friends.

-John T