A few Saturdays ago, Jim Burke and his family were over for some dinner. Along with a fine bottle of wine, he brought a Frogfolio calendar project for me to create, due that coming Friday. Excited for sure, but I had a number of assignments due the same week. (Ugh!) Ah, the life of an illustrator!
The Frogfolio calendars will be available in September - online ordering info to come for all frog-loving parties interested.
A detail and sketches follow.
Re: the title of this piece - does anybody remember Flit? Or seeing the ad campaigns in old publications? It was bug killer in the late 20's to the 50's containing DDT in the later years. Theodor Suess Geisel created artwork for the long running campaign.
Many thanks to Jim Burke - I've admired the calendars he has art directed so well for so many years and am glad to be a part of this series. Jim and a number of illustrators have garnered something like 8 medals from the Society of Illustrators over the years for their calendar illustrations.
I am currently working on re-writing / re-interpreting and illustrating a collection of Aesop's Fables. This is a personal project that I am working on and will search for a publisher soon. Not really sure about the feasability of this, but it is worth a try! If anyone has a thought as to who or what publisher might have interest in this ballpark, I'd be eager to hear. (Thx!)
While some of the fables I am totally re-creating, the Bear / Grim Reaper stays pretty close to the original story, only substituting an old bear with blueberries for the old man: Old man carrying bundle of sticks throws them down in exhaustion asks for death to come take him. Death appears and asks, 'did you call me?" - to which the old man replies, "Oh, yes, would you help me pick up these sticks I have dropped?" Moral: Be careful what you wish for - or, We would often be sorry if our wishes were gratified...
When Art Director Morten Jacobsen from Zing in Denmark contacted me about the Visit Your Local Mall campaign, I hung up the phone because I didn’t like the snarly tone in his voice. But luckily, he called back a few days later, sporting a new attitude and what must have been a fresh pair of slacks. Starting this month in over 2,900 malls across America (only malls consisting of no fewer than three stores and having at least one food court, snack van or vending capability on-site), the Visit Your Local Mall Today poster push begins. The object is simply to raise awareness of the importance - as well as the entertainment value - of shopping, and to attempt to jump-start our anemic economy, nudging our GDP upwards and slowing the rate of a sinking social morale. Some early results are in, and the numbers look good. Over 7% of those without pre-existing mall shopping experience have expressed interest in a possible mall visit “in the near or not-to-distant” future. This is a good thing.
Creative Director Bekka Gothersgade could not have been better to work with, although many of the late night calls veered off track a tad and got kind of personal for me (Hi Bekka!). And thanks to Senior Branding guru Erics Van Tuborgs for his insight and disturbing, sick sense of humor - without which, we could not have completed this on time.
So get out and shop! And don’t forget your wallet.
Visions of Europe - an exhibition of 90 works of art - curated by artist, New Hampshire Institute of Art Illustration Chair (and Frogfolio Art Director!) Jim Burke, is up and on the walls through December 20, 2013
This exhibit features works from renown artists including Milton Glaser, Gary Kelley, Alan Feltus, Teresa Fasolino, Brad Holland, Jim Burke, Lani Irwin, Ellen Weinstein, Paul Rogers, Leigh Guldig, John Thompson, Rich Pellagrino, Giselle Potter, Roger DeMuth, Patrick McCay, Ryan O'Rourke, Allison Cole, Bill Cass, John S. Dykes, Damon Lehrer, Rick Berry, and NHIA students, faculty and alumni.
The exhibit and opening reception are free and open to the public.
The exhibition is located in the lobby at One New Hampshire Ave., Pease Tradeport, Portsmouth, NH and runs from Saturday, Nov. 2 through Friday, Dec. 20, 2013.
Hope you can make it - Here is a selection from the show.
John S. Dykes, 'Window Washer - Estonia' - Gouache and pastel.
And here are a few more of my pieces for the show.
... Many thanks to Jim Burke and all at New Hampshire Institute of Art, where I have been teaching since September. This is my first teaching experience - Fridays only, so it is manageable(!)... I cannot believe the progress all my students have made. It has been a rewarding endeavor.
John S. Dykes, 'Three Trees' - gouache and pastel.
John S. Dykes, 'Benediktbeuern' (Bad Tolz, Bavaria, Germany)- gouache and pastel.
And now for something completely different... an earlier mixed media piece turned travel poster / print.
I'm trying to do a portrait a day, which realistically ends up at around 4-5 per week, for the next few months. (Monday - Friday). I have done this before for short periods, usually only lasting a couple days, maybe a week or two. Recently, my friend Chris Piascik, creator of Daily Drawings, (which is up to about #1,479 or something!) inspired me to get into it again, and tie into Instagram and other sites social. Having fun so far. I think I'm the only person out there with an Instagram account with nothing on it! Zip. Not enough hours. Well, soon enough...
Here are some from the first few weeks...
•The Daily Reportrait: Portrait illustrations of contemporary figures created in varying mediums by John S. Dykes. These portraits are created daily (mostly) and are accompanied by a hand-lettered fact, rumor, complete falsehood, or otherwise illuminating highlight of the character portrayed, and are designed to enlighten and entertain people and their relatives.
Please just contact me if you wish to receive these in a weekly email, or subscribe on my website.