Scott Bakal
April 2007
Bowled Over
On March 30th, 2007 I was lucky enough to visit Joe Bowler's home and studio with my Master's class for the day and discuss with him the history of his work as an illustrator through to his life as a portrait painter.

Bowler was part of Cooper Studios in New York City starting in the mid 50's and quickly rose in popularity as an illustrator at the tail-end of the 'golden age' of illustration. He was inducted into the Society of Illustrators Hall of Fame in 1992.

Joe Bowler Website

It was a pleasure to meet with him and amazing to watch him paint. It is not often one would get to see a master painter work but able to meet someone who experienced that wonderful time in illustration history.  I created a special 'History' gallery here on Drawger with over 50 photos of his work and photos of Joe working on a portrait as a demo for us.
The thing I always found interesting of his work is his handling of color, in particular, the temperature.  Warm, cold, warm, cold.  Joe's palette is set up based on the temperature of the colors as you can see in the photos.  Warm yellows and reds to cool reds for the skin tones then same for the greens and blues.  I had a note somewhere around here about what his exact colors are.  I'll post that when I find it.  Watching him mix and throw paint was worth the trip alone.  I hope that the gallery will at least give one the mere impression of what he does and how he does it.  Enjoy.

The portrait he was working on in these photos was done in under 1 hour.
Joe Bowler Photo Gallery
All images copyright Joe Bowler.
One of my all time favorite Bowler illustrations. I took this photo of the original art at his home.
Breathe Deeply Pt. 2
Finished Cover
Over a month ago I got a call from Joannah Ralston at Insight Design to do a series of illustrations for a trade magazine I never heard of.  I found out that the guy Milken went to jail for some reason or another (??).
This was an interesting article that I wanted to feature here because it dealt with a new method of reducing carbon emissions which lead to global warming.  The method is making money off of carbon pollution by buying and selling 'carbon credits'.  The conservative right that always hemmed and hawed about greenhouse gasses and whether or not it actually leads to global warming are listening up and joining the bandwagon because now; they see dollar signs.
Briefly, how it works is that companies that emit gasses are given a certain amount of 'carbon credits' and they may buy or sell these credits to other companies if they have too many credits and the other company releases more gasses and needs these credits to offset their pollution.  While it is an incentive for the larger companies to TRY to reduce their emissions, if they have the cash, they can buy their way out of it so it becomes a rather shady idea.  Now, these carbon credits are traded on various stock markets and it is really gaining momentum.
While it is not commonplace to trade these credits yet, I feel this subject needs to be thought about a little more because other than a vehicle to make money, some of the methods of dealing with pollution are pretty thin.  If it reduces emissions, I guess it could be a good way to jury is out on this one.
This is a new client and the art director was absolutely grand to work for.  I would post more sketches but I have dozens as I had the latitude to conceptualize whatever I wanted in the beginning and then we went through the piles of work and sifted through what she wanted and what the editor wanted.  It also gave me a chance to play with doing some black and white work which I haven't done since 1995!  There will be more posts of recent black and white stuff which I am excited about.  This black and white work led to another job for another new client. 
So, get green people...and make some money!  Ugh.
Rough for Bank/Market Illustration
Final Bank/Market Illustration
Cover Version 1
Cover Version 2
Cover Version 3
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Bakal is teaching at TutorMill, an online mentoring site for students of illustration!