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Thursday, August 7, 2014

Master Splinter Digital Sketch/ Painting Process...

For this week's blog post I thought I'd share another process demo/ tutorial. Instead of using traditional mediums I am going to focus on digital painting/ sketching. For those of you that know me personally know that I love digital painting! Like all mediums it has unique qualities and attributes that are specific to it's self. It can do things that other mediums can't. There is a huge down side to digital painting, unless you draw it out on paper first, you don't have an original art piece when you are all finished. Sure you can make prints but it's not the same thing, trust me. 

The subject for this demo is none other than everyone's favorite ninja rat... Master Splinter! I've been wanting to do a painting of this guy for some time now and Sketch Dailies topic yesterday happened to be Splinter so I decided it was finally  time.

As far as tools go I am using a Wacom Cintiq 24 HD and Photoshop CS6.  

A while back a friend of mine recommended some awesome digital pencil brushes from FRENDEN.  They have a natural pencil feel and add a nice texture to the digital drawing. As with most of my artwork I start out with a few rough thumbnail sketches to get a feel for the character. Once I get one that has the right look I start to refine it. 

Now that the rough sketch is done I lower the opacity of that layer pull up a new layer and tighten up the line work. This process is similar to how a comic book artist would use a light table to refine their pencils or inks. 

 I start the color process by first putting to getter my color pallet. Then I block in the ruff flat colors. after the flats are done I establish a light source and block in my values. I want to note that I am zoomed out and I am using a large brush for this step. Also, I am painting loosely often going outside the lines of my initial sketch. 

 I take my time and build up the layers of pixel paint. I should note that I am only working on one or to layers in Photoshop. I have some really talented friends that can paint on dozens and dozens of layers and manage them, but I have found that for me, personally, it is easier to keep the layers to a minimum. At his stage I start to zoom in for the tighter details like the hair and whiskers.

After I am happy with Splinter I rough in  a loose background. I check a few things and add a slight texture to his robe, add the old signature, and BAM this one done! 

If you have any questions or comments please sound off below. Have a great week everyone!  

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Hellcat: Marker Drawing Process!

I get a lot of questions about my process for sketching and drawing with markers. A lot of people ask how I get such vibrant colors. So I thought for this weeks blog post I'd share my simple three step process for how I go about drawing with this super fun and amazing medium.

Step 1:

I start out with a loose pencil sketch usually drawn with a red, blue or black Prismacolor Col-Erase pencil.  I love these pencils because they don't really smear and they have a soft waxy feel when you draw with them. I've been using them for years and absouluty love them.

 I draw on all sorts of papers and surfaces. My preferred paper is an 80lb heavy stock "oatmeal" colored paper made by the French Paper Co. It's a great paper for mid tones and really helps to harmonize colors better than traditional white paper.  

Step 2:

Once the rough sketch is to my liking I move on to the next step which is applying the marker washes. I say washes because I treat the markers a lot like you would a watercolor painting. Working from light to dark building up the values and the layers. 

As far as the actual marker goes any brand will work. Copic, Touch, Prismacolor etc... I happen to use a super cheap design marker made by Utrecht. I love how juicy and vibrant they are. The nibs (tips) are fantastic and can provide a wide range of marks and strokes.  On one side you get a chiseled tip and on the other side you get a really nice flexible brush. The best part is that they only cost $1.99 compared to $5.00-10.00 for the other brands!

Step 3:

Now that the markers are laid down now its time to make these colors really pop! This step for me is the most exciting because this is where the drawing really comes to life. I use a process similar to oil painting where you paint, or in this case draw, the lights over the darks. 

I grab my trusty box of Prismacolor colored pencils and start to work over the top of the markers drawing bringing out the highlights and accenting the character. The trick is to not be too heavy handed, keeping your hand light and barley touching the surface of the paper building up the layers. 


There you have it! Like most things in regards to painting and drawing it's all about the process. Certain process will yield different results. In my case this is the process that I have come to really enjoy. Is it the only way to draw with markers and colored pencils? Of course not. I would encourage all you to try experimenting and develop your own process. Feel free to comment or ask questions down below. 

I am currently working  a more in depth video tutorial of this process. I'll post it up once it is completed. Until next time take care and keep drawing!

Links for materials:

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Iron Giant for Sketch Dailies...

Sketch Dailies is a feed on Instagram and twitter that posts a new topic every day and then 1000's of wonderful artists sketch their interpretation of that topic. It's a great challenge and a good way to combat artist block! Today's topic was one of my all time favorite animated movies The Iron Giant!

I've been really into sketching birds lately and I though this was a good and funny way to fuse a bird and the sketch dailies topic together. I know the bird is a little big in comparison to the robot, but hey that what you call artistic licensing. This painting took about an hour and half in photoshop.

See, I told you that I was going to post more often on the good ole' blog! Have a great day everyone!

The Blog is Not Dead!!!

Yes I am still alive! I'm sorry that I haven't been as active as I should be on the blog. I have been focusing a lot of attention on social media websites such as Facebook and Instagram. I post almost daily to those platforms so if you want to keep up on what I'm doing on a daily basis come and follow me!

To make up for the lack of posting on the blog I thought I'd share a few paintings from my recently completed BFA project at UVU.

I will be posting weekly on the blog again so stay tuned and have a great week!

Monday, April 28, 2014

This years painting for the Primary Children's Hospital!

As some of you know every year in the Spring time I get together with the fantastic artists at UVU to create some artwork specifically to donate to the Primary Children's Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah. Every day these brave boys and girls face challenges that we can only imagine and these noble doctors, nurses and the rest of the hospital staff do all in their power to help them.

This was my contribution for this years donation.... the Easter Bunny himself. My thoughts for this painting were that I wanted to show him painting an egg, carefully paying attention to every detail and admiring his handy work. I chose this concept to mimic the tender care that this amazing hospital gives to these children on a daily basis.

I know that my contribution is small in comparison but, if I can use my artistic talents to bring a smile to just one of these amazing children in a time of difficulty it makes all the time and effort it takes to create one of these images worth it! I can t wait to do it again!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Cap'n Merica!

What's up everyone!!! Just incase you are wondering  this is not a halluciantion I am in fact posting to the blog! I apologize for not being consistent I've have been working non stop on my BFA show and I want the new paintings, 14 in all, to be a surprise for all the guests that attend my show on May 9th.

That being the case I couldn't resist the urge to post my latest painting in honor of the new Captain America movie. I've seen it and it's fantastic!!! If you haven't get out there and see it! This was painted 100% in Adobe Photoshop CS6!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Arrrrr... thar be Pirates!!!

  This body of work is from my final project for Will Terry's Children's Book Illustration class at UVU. For this assignment we had to Illustrate three scenes from a narrative supplied by Will about three pirate friends. Other than following the text we had to include a mammal, a foul, and a sea crustacean. 

As usual with anything involving instruction from Will, I had an absolute blast working on this project! 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Ron Swanson

He everyone I wanted to share another painting for my BFA show coming up this spring. This weeks subject is Mr. Ron Swanson himself!

First off I want say that I'm a huge fan of the hit tv show Parks and Rec. I think that I entire cast is absolutely hilarious. Ron Swanson, played by the talented Nick Offerman, is by far my favorite character on the show. He's a mans man with a  love for whiskey, breakfast foods and has a sweet spot for  celebrity miniature horses. If you haven't seen the show check it out!

That's it for this week's post.  I have several more paintings in the works that can't wait to share with all of you. See you next week!


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Witch Portrait

Hey everyone out there in cyberspace!!! Sorry for the delays in blog posting. I've been super busy with school and life and haven't had a lot of time to post here on the old blog. I have however, been posting daily sketches on my Instagram account! Search munoa13 or click on the link and you should be able to find me.

Another big thing that has contributed to my lack posting is the fact that I have officially started working on my BFA (Bachelors of Fine Art) project for school! My BFA project will feature 14-20 caricature/ character portraits and our lovely Witch here is the first one in the series!

I'm supers stoked to be working on this project that will showcase all that I have learned while attending UVU. When completed the artwork will be on display at a gallery open to the public. I'll let you know when I have the final date, location, and time secured.

Thanks for all the love and support!


Monday, October 28, 2013

TMNT... Raphael!!!


Rough Sketch

Refined Sketch

Value Painting

Final Painting

A good friend of mine, Micah Larsen, works for a local museum called The Leonardo. He is the supervisor over the digital commons area. This is a really neat part of the museum that focusses on digital mediums such as video, animation and art.

 Looking to feature some digital artwork at the museum, Micah thought it would be fun to showcase some of the artist from Utah Valley University. He contacted Don Seegmiller and they worked out a theme and set a date for submissions. The theme surprisingly was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Any of you who have taken classes from Don, know why we were all shocked.

For my submission I wanted to paint my personal favorite ninja turtle, Raphael. I've also included a few progress images so you can see how this painting was created. This was made100% in Photoshop CS6 from the sketch to final painting.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Dog vs Cat!

Hey folks! For this blog post I wanted to share my latest painting from my Children's Book Illustration Class taught by Will Terry.

For this assignment we had to Illustrate the word "Action". Will gave us a brief narrative about a dog chasing a cat through the kitchen eventually destroying a birthday cake and most of the room.

Having grown up on a healthy diet of Saturday Morning Cartoons, I thought it would be fun to pay homage to one of my favorites Tom and Jerry. Everything about that show was fantastic! The backgrounds and the characters were so well designed especially in the earlier cartoons. Each environment painting could easily stand on it is own and the attention to detail was absolutely amazing!

I had originally worked out a completely different background with a fun forced perspective. I spent forever painting that version but ultimately it wasn't working. So I choose to  simplify my painting and go with the less busy wall and I think it worked out for the better. It was hard to let go of something that I had invested so much time painting, but hey that's the life of an artists.

As usual I learned a ton on this assignment and am ready to move on to the next project!

Down below is my original thumbnail sketch, final character designs and the backgrounds that didn't make the cut.

Till next time!

Sunday, September 29, 2013


Being an artists is a lot of fun but, being a dad is 2 million times better! I love my kids they are the best and every year I get to help design and create their birthday invitations. Can you guess this years theme?

Recently, my soon to be eight year old son Ben has become obsessed with monster movies like Godzilla, King Kong, Jurassic Park etc... Earlier this summer his cousin Ethan came up from California for a visit and told him how awesome the movie JAWS was.

A little background for those of you that have never met Ben. He is completely obsessed with animals!  He can tell you pretty much anything about crocodiles, snakes, big cats, and yes sharks!

Since Ethan's visit, Ben has begged and pleaded to see JAWS. So I hesitantly, borrowed a copy from my Dad and we watched it. He freaked out a little but is now 10 times more obsessed with sharks!

This project started with a quick sketch on some bond paper, was scanned and painted in Photoshop CS6.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Sad Simon

This is my first painting of the semester. It was for Will Terry's Children's Book Illustration class, which I'm taking for a second time. The assignment was to illustrate an emotion along side a given narrative. 

As usual I had a lot of fun with this project. I loved designing the characters but, I struggled with the overall layout and the background. With help from Will and some other friends I was able to get it somewhat passable. You win some and you lose some. The biggest thing that learned is that I really need to do more environmental  studies!

Till next time! 

Monday, September 23, 2013


Today, I was sitting in front my computer with the best intentions to write a paper for an ethic's class that I'm taking right now.  While I was desperately trying to find the motivation to get this paper written, my mind drifted off to the month of October and the upcoming Gallery of Terror exhibit at UVU. Seeing as I hand't started my painting for the show I thought that now would be as good as time as ever to start. The paper would have to wait!

As most of you know I'm a huge fan of old monster movies! I love the drama and the set designs I especially love how everything was shot in black an white. The entire film had to read strictly in value. Light on dark and dark on light and so on. Boris Karloff was by far my favorite actor from that genre. So I thought it would be fun to paint a caricature of him for the gallery.

This painting took about an hour and a half to complete. It was painted in Photoshop CS6.
I've included a link to youtube which has a time lapse of the whole process.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Salt Lake Comic Con... That's all folks!!!

The Salt Lake Comic Con has come and gone. It was an awesome experience. Honestly There were soooo many people. The event even sold out on Saturday! I want to say a big big thank you to everyone who stopped by my booth at convention! I met some incredible people, sold some prints, and drew a ton of sketches! Thanks for all the love and support! Can't wait to do it again next year! You all rock!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

No no no...I'm Batman!

The Salt Lake Comic Con is this week and I am super pumped for it! As with most conventions, there are going to be so many incredible guests! One of those guests is Adam West! Love him or hate him, he was my first real introduction to Batman. When I was a little kid I would go to my grandma's house and watch the caped crusader run down the streets of gotham city, scale buildings, and fight off sharks with his shark repellent bat-spray! He was awesome! It wasn't until I got older that I realized how campy the 60's TV show really was.

In anticipation of the Salt Lake Comic Con, a friend of mine asked if I would be willing to do a painting the Adam West Batman so he could get it signed by him. This is nice in a way because it completes the run on my favorite Batman actors (Bale, Keaton and West). Well at lest until Batfleck comes out!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Friday, August 16, 2013

I'm still...Batman!

A few weeks ago I painted caricature of the Michael Keaton Batman (my favorite batman). As I was getting all my ducks in a row for the Salt Lake Comic Con that particular painting was bothering me big time. So I decided to "fix" some of the things that were bothering me and make it into the painting that I wanted it to be. So here it is. The top one is the new version and the bottom is the old one.

Prints will be available at the con or if you are unable to attend you can purchase them through me and I can can ship them pretty much anywhere in the world. All you have to do is email me at:

Thursday, August 15, 2013

He's no good to me dead!

As most of you know I've been super busy painting and getting prints ready for the Salt Lake Comic Con. Here is my latest piece... Mr. Boba or "Bobble" Fett!

Having been a huge Star Wars nerd all my life, Mr. Fett was an easy choice while trying to come up with subjects to paint. I could have easily painted Vader or any number of Jedi but, I thought it would be more fun to tackle ole' bucket head. He is arguably one of the coolest villains ever created! To bad he went out like a buster!

If you are in the Salt Lake area September 5-7 drop on by the Salt Lake Comic Con and stop at my table (A-5) in the artist alley!

Till next time!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

I am Iron Man!

Hey everyone out there in cyber space! I'm really excited to share another painting with all of you! For my latest project I'm continuing with the superhero caricature theme for my table at the Salt Lake Comic Con. This week's subject is...The Invincible Iron Man!

I've been a big Iron Man fan for a long time now. I love the movies and the comics, especially Adi Granov's work on the graphic novel Iron Man: Extremis.

Like last week's Thor painting, I had  a lot fun working on ole' Shell Head's armor. In particular the scratches and the arc reactor on his chest. It takes forever but, I really enjoy zooming in and painting some of these little details!

Also, for your viewing pleasure, I've included step by step process shots for each stage of this painting. Hope you enjoy it!

Now it's time to get back to work!