Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Two Year Anniversary

Yesterday marked two years since our friends serenaded Syd and I to a rendition of "Total Eclipse of the Heart" on kazoo.

Trust me. It just added to an already wonderful day.

More importantly, yesterday also marked the two year anniversary of the best day of my life.

Syd and I enjoyed a very quiet two year anniversary. The day before we decided to pack a picnic lunch and go to the Quabbin Reservoir for the day. Which she had never been too. A bit disappointing because it seemed like the more interesting places around the reservoir had been closed off. I suppose it was to do with what had happened there recently.

But as for last night, we both cooked dinner and exchanged gifts. She got me a really nice necktie, tie clip and cufflinks. I got her season four of M*A*S*H and the series finale on DVD. Which is her favorite show. And I liked season four because it introduced Harry Morgan as Sherman Potter. Who is a favorite character of mine on the show.

So we spent the rest of the evening watching M*A*S*H after a really nice meal topped off with a Lemon Meringue Pie.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Bid on A Study in Sherlock w/ORIGINAL ARTWORK

To celebrate the release of my current book A STUDY IN SHERLOCK: 13 YEARS OF SHERLOCK HOLMES ARTWORK 2000-2013 I am having a special auction!!

Right now you can bid on a copy of the book containing nearly every single Sherlock Holmes related piece I've done over the past 13 years. The book includes original illustrations (including the very first one I ever did), small works, unpublished comic art and set and costume designs from the two plays I was involved with. Which also feature photographs taken at said productions.

The winning bidder will not only receive a copy of the book PERSONALLY SIGNED to them but they will also receive an ORIGINAL PEN AND INK ILLUSTRATION!! Also PERSONALLY SIGNED to them.

Click on the link below and Happy Bidding:

Monday, May 27, 2013

Alice and the Queen of Hearts (11x17 color print)

Full color measuring 11x17 and printed on high quality glossy stock. Signed and numbered. Another new print you will only be able to get first at stART on the Street: Canal District Spring Edition!!

Hope to see you all at stART!!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

New WIZARD OF OZ print (11x17 color)

From a pen and ink original. Image colored digitally and printed on high gloss stock. Signed and numbered. A five print limited series.

And you will only be able to get it if you come out to stART on the Street: Spring Canal District Edition taking place next Sunday June 2nd on Green Street in Worcester Massachusetts from 11AM till 5PM!!

Hope to see you all there at stART!!

Friday, May 24, 2013

War of the Woo (11x17 color print)

A print I came up with for the upcoming stART on the Street: Spring Canal District Edition which I have to confess was inspired by my buddy Andy Fish's HARVEY BALL'S REVENGE illustration he did (and won a prize for) at the Harvey Ball celebration which took place at the Worcester Historical Museum a few years back.
H.G. Wells's WAR OF THE WORLDS with a decidedly Worcester Massachusetts twist. Featuring a few current and historical hotspots in the fair metropolis known affectionately by some as Wormtown, Wortown, Woo-Town or the Big Woo.
Both places that are still standing and a few that are sadly long gone.
The print measures 11x17 and is printed on a high quality glossy stock. A limited signed and numbered set.
And you will only be able to get it at stART!!
It's also to promote a possible upcoming event that may or may not be happening sometime soon. Exactly what said event is I cannot say. You'll just have to wait and see.
I'm trying to work on a couple more before the day of the show as well as perhaps bringing back a couple old favorites. So stay tuned gentle readers!!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

stART on the Street: Canal District Spring Edition is June 2nd!!

I can't believe I'm saying this but it's almost June!! And June means stART on the Street: Canal Edition!! Having the event on Green Street in the Canal District started last year after a few years of having the event on Main Street.

Bunny and the Badger will be there!! And so should you!!

Green Street proved to be a huge success and now they are having it in the Canal District for a second year in a row!! And you all should come!!

To be honest with you all, I was really surprised with how much the city has cleaned up the Green Street area. Before stART the last time I had been down Green Street was between 1998 and 2000, and it was not the type of place you'd want to bring your family down for an event.

But that's changed with the way they've really cleaned up the area with some really great restaurants. Including my wife Syd and my favorite place Smokestack Urban BBQ. There's no place better in the Woo.

I might do a blog at some point about some of the places they've either cleaned up or are attempting to clean up. You might be surprised with what you discover. However, that's not the suject of this blog.

Syd and I are doing stART on the Street again this year. The event kicks off at 11AM and ends at 5PM.

Syd will be selling some brand new jewelry she has just finished creating recently and I will hopefully have copies of my new book A Study in Sherlock: 13 Years of Sherlock Holmes Artwork by the time of the show. We will also have copies of our own book Memento Mori as well as my previous graphic novel of The Casque of Amontillado. I'm also going to get a few new prints done before the event.

More information can be found on stART on the Street's website. Hope to see you all there June 2nd bright and early at 11AM!!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Ray Manzarek: 1939-2013

I admit it. I was a huge fan of the Doors as a squeaky-voiced teen. A lot of it had to do with listening to an old LP of LA Woman my Dad owned. I still think it's probably one of their best albums and my personal favorite. It was bluesier than any of their previous albums and less of the Lizard King-eque dark psychedelic sound of any of their previous albums.

And I have to admit. It WASN'T Jim Morrison I was a fan of. It was their keyboardist Ray Manzarek I was a fan of.

Some of it might had to do with the fact he wore glasses like me. I even tried to grow my hair like his my Freshman and Sophmore years of  High School. I probably have the pictures somewhere. However, I also really liked the way he played keyboards. His style and sound added a unique element that made them stand out from other bands. Some of it had to do with the fact that they did not have a bass player in those early albums. Manzarek would play the bass parts on a Fender Rhodes Piano along with the Vox Continental Combo Organ which gave the band their signature sound. He would later switch to a Gibson G 101 Kalamazoo Combo Organ because the keys on the Vox Continental would frequently break.

Manzarek along with his fellow band-mates unfortunately got overshadowed by the larger than life on stage antics of their lead singer. And even got unfairly labelled as either Morrison's back up band or Morrison's hired hand. But honestly and to give credit where credit is due, I don't think Jim Morrison would be nearly as successful without THAT particular arrangement of musicians.

Especially Ray Manzarek's keyboard and piano playing.

He was very understated in his stage presence. Most of the time his head would be down swaying back and forth as though he was in some trance. Caught up in the groove he was creating. Leaving the theatrics to his lead singer while he and his band-mates would create the instrumental punctuation to the lyrics Jim Morrison would be signing.

I don't think Ray Manzarek ever got the praise he deserved or even the success that some musicians had as a solo artists. I think that was a shame considering how talented he was. But I can think of so many artists like that. People like Leon Russell, Mick Ronson, Harry Nilsson and even Frank Zappa. They created such great music yet they never really got the praise they deserved.

And I think Ray Manzarek is in that group. Who knows why. But it didn't stop him from continuing to create music after the Doors and continuing to tour. Both with former band-mates and on his own projects. He even recorded a rock version of Carmina Burana. Which I confess I have not heard. But being a fan of Carl Orff's original, I would love to hear it.

But I can say I was a fan of Ray Manzarek. And I was very sorry to hear about his death recently. It came as a surprise to me because I had not realized he was so sick. But it's understandable his family would not say much about it because of the need for privacy.

Here's to you Ray!! And thank you for shaping my early teen years!!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Now Available!! A Study in Sherlock: 13 Years of Sherlock Holmes Artwork 2001-2013

I've spent the last 13 years (on and off) working on art based on Sherlock Holmes. I was about 24 when I started. Yes, it's cliche but it doesn't feel like that long ago. Since then I've done various illustrations. Both independantly and for print.

I thought it was time to collect up as much of it as I could in one volume. Not every single piece in the book is a gem by any stretch of the imagination. However, it does map out my development over the past 13 or so years as an artist.

What you will get is a great number of illustrations, small works and comic art. Both published and unpublished. I've also included my set and costume design which includes a few choice photographs for THE CROWN DIAMOND: AN EVENING WITH SHERLOCK HOLMES staged at Nick's Bar and Restaurant in Worcester Massachusetts.

I plan on having copies available at stART on the Street in June. However, if you can't wait or you won't be able to make stART, you can order your copy by clicking on the link below:

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Bid on CROWN DIAMOND poster signed by the cast!!

Measuring 11x17 and printed on a high gloss stock. The poster has been signed by the entire cast of THE CROWN DIAMOND: AN EVENING WITH SHERLOCK HOLMES which was staged Friday May 10th 2013 at Nick's Bar and Restaurant.

Suitable for framing and the ideal gift for that Sherlock Holmes fan in your life. Click on the link below and happy bidding:

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Worcester Magazine Article on The Crown Diamond

I hadn't gotten the chance to post it just yet. But if you did not pick up the latest issue of Womag, I did an interview with Josh Lyford  on The Crown Diamond. Which was published the night before the performance. Read it by clicking on the link below:

The Evening After An Evening With Sherlock Holmes

If you weren't able to make it to The Crown Diamond: An Evening With Sherlock Holmes, you missed a really great performance by a really great cast of people I am very pleased to call my friends.
But I should mention. By 6:30PM it was standing room only!! I kid you not!!
I think a good 60 people showed up. And needless to say, I was absolutely overwhelmed by the turnout. I looked over at Syd at one point before the performance and she just said, "Wow!!"
But despite the really short rehearsal schedule, it turned out to be a really great night!! The cast outdid themselves with their performance. The play itself was ideal for both the Nick's stage and crowd. I don't think anyone could have handled a three act performance that night.
I know I couldn't.
But this particular play fit Nick's perfectly.
We even had members from a Connecticut chapter of the Sherlock Holmes Society come up to see the play. And they enjoyed themselves immensely. Even took me to school on some of the information about the play itself.
But I want to thank Nicole Watson and everyone at Nick's for allowing us to put on this performance. There was a lot of stress and a lot of pressure that night. And even a few last minute hiccups to work out. But they were great and everything ran smoothly.
I keep saying it. But if you have not been to Nick's Bar and Restaurant on Millbury Street, I highly recommend checking it out. Nicole and company run a top-notch establishment with both the food and drinks they offer.
And if you happened to check out the performance last night, thank you very much for stopping by. If I did not get the chance to thank you personally last night, I apologize.
What do I have planned next?
Oh, just you wait. Just you wait.
Watson, you're drunk!


Friday, May 10, 2013

Come spend an Evening With Sherlock Holmes tonight at Nick's

Well, I've been spending that last couple weeks putting up flyers in some of the various establishments around this fair metropolis we know as Worcester. So you might have seen one when you were having breakfast at Paris of the Eighties or lunch at the Theater Cafe.

Or you might have read about it in the latest issue of Worcester Magazine.

But tonight's the night!! Tonight's the opening of THE CROWN DIAMOND: AN EVENING WITH SHERLOCK HOLMES at Nick's Bar and Restaurant.

It's been nearly six months of planning, getting a cast together and rehearsing. With many nights spent between Devon, Ed and Jared's place reading through lines and working through stage direction over good food and good spirits.

I mean both the drinks and the company.

Now the set has been hung, the costumes have all been gathered up and after six months of planning that night has finally arrived.

But for me this has been 13 years in the making. Originally I wanted to do something like this at one of the local theatres like the Foothills. I had even chatted with the fine folks who used to run the Foothills the possibility of staging William Gillette's Sherlock Holmes with my artwork as set design back in either 2001 or 2003. I can't remember. Although, nothing materialized and the Foothill sadly shut its doors, there was a part of me that wanted to do something like that up here. Doing the set design for Gillette's play for the Kentucky Rep just made me want to do that more.

Enter Nick's. What's funny is the fact I found out last night after the dress rehearsal Nicole Watson who runs that fine establishment actually worked as a costume designer for the Foothills. So, in some ways I AM working with the Foothills...

...sort of.

But I am very excited. If you have not been to Nick's Bar and Restaurant, why not make tonight your first visit? It's a great place with a great atmosphere. And for one night only, the famous stage at Nick's will be transformed into that familiar sitting room at 221B Baker Street.

The show starts at 7PM and it's a mere $5.00 per person at the door to see the show. So if you're looking for something to do tonight, why not take a trip down to Nick's on 124 Millbury Street in Worcester Massachusetts and spend An Evening With Sherlock Holmes?

Friday, May 3, 2013

The Crown Diamond Promo Art

Well, here's the poster for THE CROWN DIAMOND: AN EVENING WITH SHERLOCK HOLMES taking place at Nick's Bar and Restaurant May 10th. Please could you do me a favor and repost it on your own blog, Facebook page, Twitter site or website?

Many thanks and I hope to see you at Nick's on May 10th!!