Nurturing creativity with art, animals, and science fiction

Tag: dragons

Come inside to see the Artwork at Archon 43!

Artwork at Archon 43

All sorts of Images of Interest

did not receive the same license to shoot pictures at the Archon 43 Art Show as my rare opportunity afforded by Peri Charlifu to photograph his artwork at FenCon XVI, But I’d like to highlight three of the artists who are showing artwork at Archon 43, even so.

A sign by the open doorway invites us into the Art Show, to see the artwork at Archon 43.
Setup for the Archon 43 Art Show began Thursday night before the convention.

Mitchell Bentley

Archon 43’s Artist Guest of Honor is Mitchell Bentley, who owns Atomic Fly Studios. I’ve known Mitch since he and I were both very young, and just beginning to work out what sort of artists we wanted to be. He was living in Tulsa, OK, working with oil paintings. I was under the illusion that I wanted to become an illustrator. We’ve both evolved since then!

Mitch has moved several times, earned a Master of Arts degree and lived in a variety of places. I’ve stayed basically in the same place, but had several different art-related and art-adjacent careers.

Not all of Mitch’s images featured in this post are among his artwork at Archon 43, but I thought they were representative of some of the things he does really well.

Quantum Presence by Mitchell Davidson Bentley is representative of the kind of work he does really well.
Quantum Presence, © by Mitchell Davidson Bentley
Starspawn, © by Mitchell Davidson Bentley is a spacescape similar to some of the Guest of Honor display of his artwork at Archon 43.
Starspawn© by Mitchell Davidson Bentley
Wild Ride, createdby Mitchell Davidson Bentley for the Yard Dog Press book, Assassins Incorporated, by Phillip Drayer Duncan.

Rachael Mayo

Rachael Mayo also has artwork at Archon 43. She “dragons” frequently, and she does it extraordinarily well. She has an active presence on DeviantArt as rachaelm5, and a devoted following at sf convention art shows.

The central piece in the display of Rachael Mayo's artwork at Archon 43 was her "Deep Rising 11-Finale."
Deep Rising 11–Finale© Rachael Mayo, is the large show-stopper in her display at the Archon 43 Art Show.
"Jazzdragon 13" by Rachael Mayo demonstrates the kind of brilliant gradation work visible in her artwork at Archon 43.
Jazzdragon 13, © by Rachael Mayo
Shadowgorge © by Rachael Mayo demonstrates her brilliant use of contrast and color.
Shadowgorge © by Rachael Mayo

Lucy A. Synk

As you know if you’ve been following my blog this summer, I’ve been acting as Lucy A. Synk’s agent at sf convention art shows this year. You’ve possibly already seen displays of her work on my blog posts and Facebook pages.

Here’s a look at Lucy’s Art Show panels at Archon 43. I had permission, for this one! This artwork is all © 2019 by Lucy A. Synk.

Here are some of her individual images you may enjoy. They were displayed and sold at sf conventions earlier this year.

Planet Archipelago,  © 2019 by Lucy A. Synk, is a fantasy planet image developed a base created with the  "dirty pour" acrylic method.
Planet Archipelago, © 2019 by Lucy A. Synk
Three Sisters, © 2019 by Lucy A. Synk.

A Planet Called Amethyst© 2019 by Lucy A. Synk.

These three artists represent only a fraction of the artists who are exhibiting in the Archon 43 Art Show. Each offers an individual and beautiful approach to a science fiction or fantasy subject. I hope you’ve enjoyed this glimpse of the artists and the artwork at Archon 43.

IMAGE CREDITS:  Jan S. Gephardt photographed the entrance to the Archon 43 Art Show, and first posted it on Facebook. The Mitchell Bentley images are all © by Mitchell Davidson Bentley. Quantum Presence,  Starspawn, and Wild Ride all came from Bentley’s website.

The Rachael Mayo images are all © by Rachael Mayo. Deep Rising 11–FinaleJazzdragon 13, and Shadowgorgecome from Rachael’s DeviantArt presence

Tyrell Gephardt took the photos of Lucy A. Synk’s Art Show panels specifically so he could text them to her after he put them up. She gave us permission to blog about them. My company Weird Sisters Publishing LLC has licensed the use of the three individual images for uses such as this. All of Lucy’s artwork shown here is © 2019 by Lucy A. Synk. 

An award-winning experiment finds a home

The Artdog Image of Interest

One of the nicest things that happened for me while I was at Westercon/MALCon in Denver earlier this month was receiving a blue ribbon in the 3D category at the Art Show. I feel very honored, because there was a lot of wonderful 3D artwork in this show.

The honored piece was a special, one-of-a-kind Artist’s Proof (abbreviated AP) of the Common Cliff Dragon–Male collection of multiple originals. I called it the “spiny ridge” AP because in a fit of madness I experimented with cutting out each individual scale on the ridge along the dragon’s back, then sculpting them to stand up slightly.

I took the second photo in December 2016 before I matted the piece. I have to admit it looked pretty cool, but it was a delicate operation, it took a long time, and when I’d finished I swore I’d never do that again. Granted, one should “never say ‘never,'” but now I’m officially on record that it was a one-of-a-kind experiment.

A one-of-a-kind experiment that was awarded this wonderful honor, and one which also has now been “rehomed” with a new owner. The owner got some prize-winning new art, but I was the one who got to keep the ribbon!

IMAGES: Both photographs were taken by me, Jan S. Gephardt, of my own artwork. If you wish to re-post or reblog either of them you may, as long as you include an attribution to me and a link back to this post. Thank you!

Kansas City represents, at SoonerCon 27!

The Artdog Image(s) of Interest 

I hope you can endure one more post about SoonerCon 27, held June 22-24, 2018 in Midwest City, OK. This one’s about Kansas City artists at SoonerCon 27.

At left is my SoonerCon 27 Art Show display; at right is my friend Rachael Mayo, another Kansas City-based artist who specializes in dragons. One of hers, titled Shadowgorge 4, very deservedly won a Peer Choice Nucleon Award in the Professional Artist category. She came in second to John Picacio, which is not doing badly at all.

Rachael and I weren’t the only Kansas City artists in the SoonerCon Art Show, however. Fellow Kansas Citian Allison Stein filled several panels with her small, one-of-a kind mixed-media artworks featuring quirky animals with attitude.

Also present but not exhibiting work in the Art Show were Kansas City author/artists Sherri Dean and James Hollaman.

IMAGES: Both photos in this post were taken by me (Jan S. Gephardt); in the case of Rachael’s photo, with her permission and cooperation (I asked her to smile. This is what she gave me. Twice. “That is my happy face,” she said). If you wish to reblog or re-post these images, please attribute both me and Rachael, and include a link back to this post, if possible. Many thanks!

Surprise Encounter

The Artdog Image of Interest

Surprise Encounter (2015-2018), a one-of-a-kind original mixed media paper sculpture by Jan S. Gephardt.

This is my newest fantasy paper sculpture, titled Surprise Encounter (2015-2018). I’ll be showing it in public for the first time at the SoonerCon 27 Art Show, June 22-24, 2018.

It features two of my favorite fantasy creatures, dragons. As in all of the Gemflower Series, they are tiny dragons, but still quite fierce! Their iridescent wings and bodies consist of several layers, including touches of interference metallic acrylic paint on the scales and feathers of the uppermost layer. The flower, based on a Gerbera daisy, has four layers of petals. The image area of the sculpture is approximately 8 X 9 X 0.375 inches.

IMAGE: I took this photo of my original paper sculpture, Surprise Encounter. Feel free to re-post this image, as long as you include the information that it’s artwork by Jan S. Gephardt, and link back to this page. Note: I apologize that the photo has a shadow of me in it! I had to work on a very tight time frame this week getting ready for the convention, and–well, this photo is better than nothing, I hope! I’m working on developing a better system.

New artwork debuts at ConQuesT 49!

The Artdog Image(s) of Interest 

Gerberas and Gold #1, 2016-2018, © by Jan S. Gephardt
Gerberas and Gold #22016-2018, © by Jan S. Gephardt

As promised in the mid-week post, today’s Images are my newest finished artwork. They go on display today in the ConQuesT 49 Art Show, along with most of the rest of my current work. Can you tell I don’t have the best setup for photographing my artwork right now? Believe it or not, both mats are the same color.

These two pieces feature another variation on the “Gemflower” idea (these are based on Gerbera Daisies), that I started playing around with in 2016.

Each little dragon is not only hand cut, sculpted, and assembled, but it’s also touched with metallic gold and/or copper paint, and each dragon is posed slightly differently. Each is genuinely unique, while preserving the overall look of the series. More variations on this theme are in the works. I plan to debut a third, larger piece in this series at SoonerCon 27.

IMAGES: Both of these artworks are © by Jan S. Gephardt. You may repost or reblog them, as long as you don’t alter them, give a full attribution, and provide a link back to this post. Thanks!

A glimpse from Capricon 38

The Artdog Image of Interest  

Paper sculpture by Jan S. Gephardt, as displayed at Capricon 38, in February 2018.

I’m in Wheeling, IL, for the weekend, at Capricon 38. So far, it’s been fun. I’ll probably have more thoughts about Capricon in future posts, but here’s a look at my Art Show panel, as it appeared before the show opened.

IMAGE: I took this photo, in part for this blog post. If for any reason you re-post it, please do so with an attribution and a link back to this page. Thanks!

Love in the Storm

The Artdog Image of Interest 

For now, this wraps up my series of Images of Interest focused on my own artwork. Love in the Storm is one of my more recent multiple-original images, based on a 2016 stand-alone original that is now in a private collection.

I developed the image from several separate drawings penciled on tracing paper, overlaid against each other for placement, then inked, scanned, and colored using Photoshop.

Each multiple original is one of 25 double-layer multiple original paper sculptures. Each is printed with fade-resistant inks on archival paper, then cut out, sculpted, and assembled by hand using archival materials.

The single mat (available in black or white) tops 2 layers of foam board spacers and an acid-buffered backing. Each piece is individually hand-signed and numbered by the artist, Jan S. Gephardt, and comes with a Certificate of Authenticity. Images from this edition are now available at a few science fiction convention art shows and through the Artdog Paper Sculpture Shop on Etsy.

The Making of “Love in the Storm”

My newest piece of artwork debuted at ConQuesT 47 in Kansas City, this past weekend. It’s titled Love in the Storm, and I’m still trying to decide if it’s finished or not.

This is Love in the Storm, as it appeared in May 2016 at ConQuesT 47.

It looks okay at fairly close range, but when you back several feet away the green dragon kind of fades back into the waves. Is this enough of a problem that it needs to be addressed? Or is it good the way it is? Please comment below, and let me know what you think! I’d appreciate viewers’ guidance.

Overlays fit pieces together.

I use overlays to fit pieces together.

My paper sculpture is all based on line drawings that I draw “from scratch,” usually based on reference photos. I scan the inked drawing, and often use tracing paper overlays to draw details, such as pieces of wings, interlocking shapes, etc.–then scan them, too. This piece is the culmination of three years’ assorted drawings and re-thinking. Perhaps you’d like to know how that happened. 

I often re-use “base” drawings for several different compositions. The “base” drawing for the green dragon in this piece dates back to early 2014. You might recognize it, because it’s been the basis for a fair number of my other recent dragon images. I blogged about it last year, in a post called Dragon Variations

I built up the color layers for the “Ocean Wave” background element in PhotoShop.

I originally created the “waves” that form the background of this piece with the idea that I’d use them for the backgrounds of my “Koi-colored” dragons of 2015. They didn’t work for that, so I left the drawing in my sketchbook. But I realized that once I added color, cut them apart and layered them up, they would be just the thing for this piece’s background.

Deconstructing, then sculpting, layering and reconstructing the waves.

The little red dragon was the element I added this year. I’d originally wanted to create a piece with swooping dragons flying together, when I did the 2014 drawing–but I never could manage a second dragon that I liked, until this past May.

Sculpting and assembling the dragons.

I made that one the same basic way I made the first one: base drawing, wing to add on (in fact, its wing is a reverse of the green dragon’s wing), then Prismacolor pencils to enhance the color from the computer printout. I like to add the touches with Prismacolors, for their rich hues and responsive handling. Then I put it all together, and thought, wow. That actually looks okay. 

IMAGES: This is an easy one: I took all the pictures of my own art. 

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