Friday, June 9, 2017

Graphic Design Project: Wiffle Ball Team Logo

A corporate Wiffle Ball league team wanted a logo for t-shirts and other assorted team apparel, and communications. The brief contained a skull and the name Marauders. With a little sketching, I came up with the idea to add Wiffle Ball holes on the cranium and the idea was approved enthusiastically.

The first logo design and text treatment was essentially approved as is. It was noted that they needed a black and white version with no grayscale, as well as a color version.

The finished logo came out great embroidered on hats and printed on T-shirts. 

Friday, March 10, 2017

Project: Book Cover Art for 'In The Crosshairs' by Robert Gonko

Author Robert Gonko commissioned cover art for his new novel. This is the second cover I have done for him. 

His 13-year old daughter did the concept art this time. With the art direction already prepared, I did not need to do any sketches before starting production. 

I began with the outline of the police shield badge and used 3ds Max to create splines, then used the Surface modifier to fill in the shape. 

I next did a test of the bump map using some clip art as a placeholder. I set up some lights to see the surface better as I started work on the vector art for the shield. 

Using the clip art as a rough guide, I used Adobe Illustrator to make a grayscale bump map. 

After some guidance from the author, I settled on a navigational "rosette" for the center of the shield. The fictional city of Port Mason straddles a river. 

Police badges are commonly silver and gold, so using the bump map art as a starting point, I created the simple color scheme. 

At this point we held a client review and Robert was very happy with the artwork. With the texture work completed, I moved on to refine the modeling of the shield, adding an edge shape to the Shell modifier using a custom spline. I then duplicated the resulting object, and moved the copy below the original and scaled it up slightly, to act as the shield backing. I used a procedural texture for the backing, creating a subtle, slightly weathered black leather appearance. 

A few test renders followed, using lighting and shadows. I used four lights in the scene, two of which were colored red and blue, to evoke a police car's rooftop flashing lights. To avoid casting colored shadows, I turned off the shadow casting for the colored lights. Because the render would cover the front and back of the book, I positioned the shield to the right of the image so that it could be positioned in the center of the front cover. I added the new art to the book cover document in Photoshop, using the font and layout established in the previous cover design. At this point, the back cover text had not been changed yet. 

After further review, Robert asked for a deeper, richer blue for the fabric that the shield was laying upon. I rendered three versions with changes to the surface gloss and specular level, lighting, and shallow vs. deep depth of field. 

Robert selected a shallow depth of field and a higher level of gloss and specular material. Changes included making Robert's first and last name closer in size than the previous cover per his request, and I decided to not add the actual cross-hair overlay to the design, because it would have been too cluttered and a bit too "on the nose." Since the back cover text was made up of longer paragraphs, I elected to left-justify the text instead of centering it. The final cover art was completed, and I also made a Facebook banner for his author page

Here is what the book looks like when it is shipped to you! 

Robert's new book is now available at the following link:

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Logo Design Client: Shabab El-Bourj Sporting Club, Lebanon

This logo design was created for the Shabab El-Bourj Sporting Club, a Lebanese club. the logo brief asked for a design that would show that the club is for young and other ages, for different people regardless of their believes and political orientation, that all would work as a team, with a 3D effect. I created some example shapes and text treatments to begin as sketches on paper, then laid them out in Adobe Illustrator for review by the client.

The option of using the Lebanese Cedar iconography was then requested. The previous logo concept had two figures holding a victory cup, and this was updated to have the two holding the Cedar tree instead of the cup. In addition, the client asked that the heads of the people be somewhat humanized, so I reshaped the heads so they were not circles, and positioned them so they looked like they were looking toward the tree. We removed the stars, because although they liked them, they were thinking when they have a performance or win a cup, they could add them in the future to signify the achievement.

The client settled on the shield shape for simplicity; with the two people holding the cedar tree in the middle, and color treatments were begun.

The logo text was in both English and Arabic; Arabic text in vector art was provided by the client. The colors requested were yellow and black, with red and white for the Lebanese flag and the green for cedar in the middle. Blue was selected as the color to accent the black areas and make them look more dimensional.

The shield shape was given a 3D edge that looks like it is beveled, the text was also given highlights and shadows, and shadows added to parts to make the different areas look like they are separated. Adjustments to the shapes and arrangement of elements were tried, as well as a different blue palette. The Cedar tree broke the border of the text to further add to the dimensional appearance.

Final changes included the human figures to be two colors - red and white, with the inner two colors inside to evoke the Lebanese flag. With a few more variations of color arrangement, the final version was selected with a grouping of hues that were more generally concentric.

 Final Logo.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Some 3D Models Made for Second Life

This head model was made to work with the existing Second Life avatar body, replacing the head with a rigged Bat inspired furry head. The rigged components are the head, neck and eyes. Custom texturing by Rob Sword. Textures made to client specifications to match reference artwork.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Creating 3D avatars for the upcoming film "Ready Player One"

A recent project called for avatars to be created for the upcoming Steven Spielberg film, "Ready Player One". I had a few that were in various states of completion from previous clients and other projects. I created two original avatars, ElectroNaga and Exosius Mistwalker.

ElectroNaga is the avatar of a grad student who loves gardening and animals. She also wears a patterned hoodie and a backpack. ElectroNaga is 5.5 meters, or 18 feet, from nose to tip of tail, and 1.9 meters, or 6.25 feet, fingertip to fingertip in her relaxed pose.

Exosius Mistwalker is a half dark elf, half dragon. He's a powerful techno-mage and is a renowned teacher and crafter of arcane objects. In the Oasis, he makes avatars and custom virtual items for select clients. Exosius stands 7.5 feet tall, or about 2.3 meters, from his feet to the top of his scaled head crests.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Sketch to Design to Product

A sketch I drew a while ago finally got traced into vector format and now is available on several new items!

Products with this can now be obtained from my Zazzle online store! 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Project: Book Cover Art for 'The Servant' by Robert Gonko.

Author Robert Gonko commissioned cover art for his new novel. We first went through several very rough layout ideas. 

The author selected a version with the gun and a Bible on the cover. 

Next, I created the text in Adobe Illustrator and assembled some different ideas in color. The gun is a 9mm Beretta, specifically referenced and used in the book. I used a public domain image from Wikimedia for the gun. The sketch called for a Bible and the gun to be on the front cover, but the layout was awkward with both elements. I decided instead to make the entire cover reminiscent of a bible, and use the gun as a solitary element.

The author chose the black cover with gold and silver text effects.

A few spacing, lighting and alignment corrections later, and we had the final version.

And here is the electronic book cover version.

You can purchase this book from