Saturday, September 10, 2005

Gallery O' Terror

I'm teaching a little class as a guest illustrator at Brigham Young University. It is a class of senior illustrators and the deal is that a different guest illustrator comes and teaches the class once a week for three weeks. The first week I do the song and dance routine. Show my work, talk about the business and give them the assignment. The second week I have the students come to my house and visit my studio. We review sketches and I do a demo. Then we finish up with a final critique the third week. (This year it might even involve food. They wanted to have some kind of pot-luck dinner. I'm game. I'm bringing brownies) Anyway, the assignment I gave them this year is this: Gallery O' Terror!!! (spoken in a creepy Vincent Price kind of voice) It needs to be a children's book illustration. Either a double page spread or a single page illustration and a spot for the other page. Each page is 9x10 horizontal or vertical layout. The only rule tis year is that they must include a pumpkin somewhere in the illustration

The idea started years ago when I worked with a bunch of artists animating educational software for kids. It was really cute stuff. I mean sometimes it was waay too cute. So we found the only way to balance the cute was to periodically delve into the dark. Every fall we would do the Gallery O’ Terror. We would make a topic and everyone would do their own version and then we would hang them on our cubicle-wall gallery. Loads of spooky fun. This is where the idea came from. The reason I give the assignment in September is so that if a artist wanted could make a promotional postcard to send to art directors or to Grandma in time for Halloween.

My wife started taking a bunch of my past gallery submissions, framing them and hanging them in our living room at Halloween time. Those crappy little paintings started looking okay with a nice frame around them. So, now I try to do something each year to keep the gallery growing and to keep the too cute stuff at bay.

This is the sketch for this years painting. It is also the painting I was doing as a demo for the class. I’ll post the final when I finish it.

And here it is.

I include this assignment here for any reader who might want to participate or might want to begin their own Gallery O’ Terror for themselves (even if your not an artist). Of course you don’t have to follow my rules. Do whatever you want. You could email me a jpg or a link and I could post it. Now get to work. Your grade depends on it.

My daughter and her cousin joined in. Aren't they awesome.


dalene said...

Funstuff Guy! My favorite is the creepy green guy carrying the tombstone.

And we accept your challenge. That sounds like a fun family activity. We'll let you know how it goes.

By the way. I bought two books already. Shhhhhh--they're for Christmas presents. I need to pick up one more, then can I bring them over for a signing?

idobcool said...

You have some GREAT Illustrations here! I'm inspired by your work and want to get back into illustration & cartooning. I am a graphic designer/digital retoucher and don't have much time to sit and draw anymore. That new Pumpkin Head sketch looks great & the zombie family is classic! I'll be checking back to see more.

Uli Meyer said...

I love your gallery of terrors! I am very into spooky, fun illustration (see my Zombie Post in the archives of my blog). I've got tons more but are not able to post 'em yet. Would love to see more of this great stuff.

Unknown said...

U got a great idea!! This is so much fun!! Love the little green tomb stone man picture!! I was thinking to make a Halloween special illustration for my blog ... You give me some inspiration!! :)

MikeS said...

Your gallery of illustrations are just chalk full of the macabre and great fun! Superb job! Hope you gallery continues to grow!

And thanks for the very kind comment you left for me, Guy. Very much appreciated!

Drazen said...

YAYYY a gallery of terrors! BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA the first is my fave and it sounds like a fun class. Looking forward to more spookiness as halloween approaches.

topher clark said...

I love Gallery of Terror. Can you make it into wallpaper? Like real wallpaper, not computer wallpaper? just wondering.

Kactiguy said...

Compulsive- I can't wait to see what you come up with. Really looking forward to what Shane does. Could be interesting. I'm ready to sign your books anytime. Bring em over.

idobcool- Thanks. I hope I don't dissapoint.

Uli- Your zombies are awesome. Everyone needs to see them. In fact go here or check out his site. Iwant to see more of your spooky stuff.

alina- You definitly should do a Halloween piece. Thanks for your comment.

Smook- Thank-you for leaving me kind comments.

Drazen- Everytime I look at your spooky stuff it makes me want to do another...something. So inspiring. Lets see what you've got.

Chris- For you I think we could make this happen. Wall paper gore. Nice idea. Maybe instead of a pumpkin I should have said banana. That would be more scary to you, right?

Jon McNally said...

Gee, Guy, you seem to me a creative juggernaut. GOT is a fabulous idea.

Christina Forshay said...

Cool stuff! I really like your Zombies painting. I'm definately gonna come up with something for your assignment. It'll give me something to work on!

I SHOULD be Boss of the World said...

Since I've stumbled upon your site from IF, I've become increasingly inspired to draw illustration types again. Being a Detailer, and constantly thinking "technically" kind of sucks the creativity out of me. I enjoy your illustrations, and marvel at the technique and the colors. I admire your work greatly. I would kill (getting ghoulish) for a chance to attend your class at BYU and see how creative work is done. Are there any books available that you recommend to teach good illustration techniques and publishing prep? I'm thinking that the students at your little class might be using a good textbook, or something else you would know of. At times when I've been able to have time to sketch, I've channeled a few little ghouls out onto the paper myself.

Sandra Khoo said...

I beg to differ,your works are really rreeaallyyy fun to look at,I absolutely love your cat tacos banner!!! So adorable,and I won't have the heart to eat it. XD Thanx so much for dropping by with your lovleh comment,otherwise I wouldn't have found your site! ^^ Muchos Gracias me muchacho! :D Gracias!

kacy faulconer said...

You should take your class on a field trip to "The Corpse Bride." It should be coming out at just the right time. I'm sure you can tie it all in somehow. See you there.

PS You are cool.

Mercedes said...

Hi! I like the idea, I have great inspiration in the office everyday to participate! I think it will be like therapy !:-))

Julie Oakley said...

Lovely work and you've inspired me so I may well participate if I can find some time

constanthing said...

Your Gallery is a roar! An overdose of cuteness can sure kill... you shown it well with the skeleton at Hey Diddle Diddle... It's a wacky project idea :)

Courtney Pippin-Mathur said...

great work and just the right thing to inspire some great halloween stuff, i'm in.

John Nevarez said...


Love these drawings!! Beautiful!! It's like I want to see them animated. Keep 'em coming!! said...

Ohhhh your zombies are beautiful and creepy I love this .....

Diandra Mae said...

I'm slowly working my way back to art, and this is just the assignment I need to look at my work in a new way. Thanks!

Kactiguy said...

Thanks again for the comments. I added a few submissions from my daughter and my niece. They asked what I was doing and when I told them about the assignment they jumped in with both feet.

Uloo- Coming from you that means alot.

Boss of the world- I don't really know of many books that teach illustration so I'm not much help. Maybe some of the folks reading this might be able to think of some. My best advice would be to draw ALL the time. Put a lot of mileage on that pencil and you are bound to get better. Study artwork that you like and try to do it yourself but mostly it come down to drawing. Hope that helps.

Lorien said...

And have a really good wife.

Fulton Beal said...

Bumps in the night
From zombies just might
Free up your bodily functions
Cuz its just a scream
This galley so clean
Here at this halloween junction

I must have a go
With monsters ya know
Mayhaps up a skull or a two
One stiched at the neck
Drac? What the heck
And maybe someones that go boo

Thus goes the gall'ry o terror
The ways of the shattering mirror
With blood and some guts
We'll scarf em like mutts
Awaiting the scraps of the dinner

Kactiguy said...

Cheezy you never dissapoint. Nice poem.

Cat said...

OH, my! I love this idea! I'm a huge fan of Halloween. I wish my own G.O.T. would be as well done as yours. I love your spooky pieces! Well done! Thanks for sharing and for the ideas.