Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Hanging at the Playboy Mansion

Hey everybody! Something really cool happened this past week. A painting I did of Hugh Hefner was given to Hugh Hefner in person as a gift at the Playboy Mansion in LA. And I gots the pics to prove it!
Last week at the King Con Convention while i was talking shop with the Royal Flush crew, founder and editor-in-chief Josh Bernstein excitedly told me he had actually been invited to the Playboy Mansion by Hefner himself! There's a lengthy interview with Hef in the newest issue, focusing on his early love of comic books, his transition to magazines and the trials and tribulations of starting up Playboy, plus some really great stuff i never knew about Hef.
Upon receiving an advanced copy of the Royal Flush, Hef was blown away, very impressed with the issue's design and content. This coming from a magazine magnate, an all-time titan of industry, was outstanding. And he wanted to meet Josh! Needless to say, JB was freaking out. He and his girlfriend Mara were going on Friday! Josh asked me if he could give Hef the painting I did of him and the bunnies as a gift, as a token of friendship. It's the kind of question you don't expect to be asked on any given day. "Of course!" I replied in shock, "Sure!"

I did the painting back in January. For some reason i did it larger than usual - 13'' x 21''. In hindsight i was very glad i did. I got reference from a photo of Hefner and the Playboy Bunnies on a tarmac from the 1960s, during the early years of Playboy Magazine. Below are some photos of the process from the sketch through to the presentation.

Double page spread.

The painting and I share a last moment together.

We put it in an 18'' x 24'' frame with a 13'' x 21'' matte inset.

Reflection of a smiling me in Hef's suit.

En route

And voila!

The Money Shot. Pretty friggin cool. Josh said Hef loved the painting and was genuinely touched, showing it off to all the other guests at the mansion, including a reunion of bunnies from the 60s and 70s.

Two of which happened to be in the 60's tarmac photo i had used for reference. Crazy! Josh and Mara had a fantastic time. Hef was really cool and a great host. They all watched the movie Basic Instinct - (!) haha - to a bunch of hooting and hollering from the audience. In Josh's words, "It was surreal." At the end of the night, Hef took the painting with him into his room. Hopefully it's now hanging in a cool spot somewhere within the hallowed halls of the Playboy Mansion.

Thank you Josh for including me in your adventure. This is just the beginning!

The newest issue of Royal Flush Magazine is On Sale Now. Available Online or at finer magazine racks everywhere.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Royal Flush, King Con and Cards

Had a great weekend with the Royal Flush crew at King Con in Brooklyn. Was part of my first very panel with Josh Bernstein, Danny Hellman, Steve Chanks, Steve Ruvolo, Cojo, Harlan Paul Cress, and Sean Pryor in a raucous discussion of the intersection of comics & rock & roll and the origins of Flush. The indomitable Jeff Newelt was moderating.

I also met some really fine people - Rick Parker, Seldon Hunt, Neil Adams, Danny Hellman, Brian Ewing and the lovable Harvey Pekar. Hot damn this mag is taking off! It's all grown up... sniff sniff -

There's illustration galore from the likes of Rick Veitch, Danny Hellman, Steve Chanks, Sean Pryor, Josh Bernstein, Brian Ewing, Aaron Augenblick, Sedlon Hunt, Erik Rodriguez, Cojo, Ryan Dunlavey, Brent Engstrom, Paul Pope, Harlan P. Cress, Jesse Lefkowitz and me!

Below is the front and back cover, plus a bunch of interiors. Artist's name and link are below their respective work.

Robin Eley

Josh Bernstein

Brent Engstrom

Pat Sentman

Sean Pyror

Danny Hellman

Basil Gogos

Patrick McQuade

My contribeush for this ish.
It's 13'' x 21'' AND it's hanging in HEF'S BEDROOM!!! Hopefully...
For the full story click here

Rick Veitch

BOO YA! That's some hot art and sizzling content.
All page layout designed by Josh Bernstein

Featuring Cover story with the one and only Hugh Hefner!, Rock Legend Joan Jett, Inside the Mind of Ted Nugent, Basil Gogos, Leslie Neilsen, Golfing with Alice Cooper, Jack Kirby and his friend Frank Zappa. Harvey Pekar, Dethklok, Osaka Popstar and Lamb of God! Under Cover Nerd… Jenna Jameson, Californication and the Man Behind the Machete, Danny Trejo, Red Hot Funny Guys; Jeffrey Ross, Jim Gaffigan and Brian Posehn! Plus, Hispanic Batman Vs. Hugh Hefner, Diarrhea Dog, The Man Awards, The Return of the Douche Bag 100, The Super Friends, Harvey Pekar, Paul Pope, Lux Interior, Basil Gogos, Torche, Black Tide, Osaka Pop Star, Evan Handler, Madeline Zima, Danny Trejo, Slayer and so much more!

Check out the website at

You can purchase a copy today online through the site directly or Amazon or

Royal Flush is distributed NATIONALLY at hundreds of strategic locations, including Barnes & Noble’s, Border’s Books, Virgin Megastores, Tower Records, Hot Topic, newsstands, galleries , comic shops, coffee shops, in such places as New York City, Los Angeles, Boston, San Francisco, Washington D.C., Houston, Phoenix, Seattle, Chicago, Detroit, Miami, New Jersey, Conneticut, More importantly, Royal Flush can be found at many of this country’s great independent book and music stores such as Newbury Comics in New England, Planet K Records in Texas, Manifest Disc in South Carolina, Zia Records in Arizona, Quimby’s in Chicago, and the Kim’s Underground Video chain in New York City.

So proud of everyone involved. The Flush is simply unstoppable. Props to the chief - Josh Bernstein for gettin' er done, seen here with Harvey Pekar and Sean Pryor.

I also recently made up some promo postcards for this blog. Upon review of the Shapes, my lovely and talented wife Daria commented that Queen Nadya of Pollen Nation and Ramburger the Chancellor were married - haha! - story forthcoming. I thought this was brilliant and put them side by side, then found this great vintage wallpaper i found online.

Fantastic Wall paper i found on DeviantArt by
Edd Li

which he got from these fellas, Bobbyperux and Xe0s

There you have it.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

4 Sketches till Ramburger

Here are the four sketches I did that led to Ramburger. Kinda went off the reservation in a couple spots. The final doesn't really look like the initial Shape but that's ok. Sometimes you just gotta go with it.