Monday, December 21, 2009

Merry Merry (I Need Your Huggin')


The holidays are always tough for cracker headed boys.
Best of the season to all...

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Brick a Brack...

Some random recent snippets:
Above: My friends, the Dawsons of Bramalea, recently welcomed their 2nd son, Rex Fisher, into this here world. I made them this card. Sort of a visual pun on his name...

Above: "Twitter Fiction Takes Off"-from Broken Pencil #45 (Fall 2009)

Above: "Hands Off"-This is my contribution to "Lust" the first of the Seven Deadly Sins series of group shows happening at the Beverly Owens Project (link)in Toronto. The show runs from Dec. 3-Jan 3. and features the work of 100 different artists and illustrators.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Taddle Creek-Winter 2009 Issue

As a continuation of my post below, here's the four pieces I contributed to the current issue of Taddle Creek (on news stands now). Thanks go out to Conan Tobias for having me on board...

L: "Corey Was a Danger Cat" by Heather Hogan
R: "My Life Among the Apes" by Carey Fagan
L: "See You Next Tuesday" by Stacey May Fowles
R: "Savage" by Nathaniel G. Moore

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Taddle Creek Launch-Thurs. Dec 3

This Thursday, December 3rd, Taddle Creek launches its pretty-new-looking, full-colour winter issue at el Mocambo, 464 Spadina Avenue (just south of College). It all starts at 8 p.m., on the second floor. Admission is free, magazines are the non-literary-magazine price of $5, and entertainment is provided by Stacey May Fowles, Nathaniel G. Moore, Terry Murray, Lindsay Zier-Vogel, and Paul Bellini as the voice of Taddle Creek.

Though admission is free, please do bring some sort of canned good for the el Mo's Serving Charity. It's all the bar asked of Taddle Creek, and each canned good will give you a chance to win some wonderful door prizes.

If you can't make the launch, the issue is now on finer newsstands everywhere. Do pick up a copy. And remember to keep on top of upcoming Taddle Creek events by becoming its Facebook fan at www.facebook.com/taddlecreek.

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My connection to this here party is that this particular issue is the first to feature illustrations as contributed by me, so if you're in the Toronto area, come on by. Since the magazine's not officially out, I won't be posting my pieces as of yet, but I'll say that I'm quite happy with the end results...

Twist Away Those Gates of Steel...

Well that only took me a week...
Above is part two of the Devo posters, a bit of a departure from my usual style, but a little change is good for the soul. Once again, big thanks to Studio 19, Shawna from Warner Bros. as well as Michael from the Devo camp for putting one aside and the nice lady with the clipboard from ATG for letting the Mrs. and I into the post show schmooze. A couple of the best nights of my life!
If anybody's interested in copies of both posters, please drop me a line: matt@shinypliers.com

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I've Got Eyes All Around....

I'm not normally one for the "oooh look at the famous people I met" type photos, but this night is one of those exceptions. I had the supreme honour of designing the posters for Devo's first trek through Toronto in 25 years. It was both a scary and amazing experience. They're doing two nights in town, this particular night (Nov.23) was devoted to the classic "Are We Not Men", night two (Nov.24) will be based around "Freedom of Choice". The perks of being a part of this is that I was able to get into the meet and greet which was also a scary and amazing experience, but I got to meet a band I've been a fan of for a number of years and they were a swell bunch of fellows (regardless of my extreme nervousness and lack of clear communication ability). As for the show, it was an amazing experience-end of story. Looking forward to night two...
Above: Poster design for "Are We Not Men..." signed by the bandAbove: Mr. Mark Mothersbaugh and I showing off our marketing plan to dominate the cereal market...Above: Me again with Bob 1 and my lovely lady Mrs. Lindsay Gibb (look at that hair!)

Thanks abound foremost to the band for letting me do this, Shawna Samboceti at Warner Brothers for all her work being the liason between the band and I and to Bianca and Mike at Studio Number 19 for their usual top notch printing work. I'll have the second design for night #2 up tomorrow...

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Pictures at an Exhibition...




This would have to definitely be one of the most fun CD projects I've been a part of in a long while. As done by my close friend, and erstwhile gentleman, "Friendly" Rich Marsella (link), "Pictures at an Exhibition" is a re-interpretation of the classical piece by Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky (1839-1881). The artwork was influenced by 20th century Russian and Soviet illustration, while trying to avoid the obvious Soviet era iconography. To all the Jim Flora fans, the front cover is an homage to his classic illustration to "Inside Sauter-Finegan" (link)
For anybody in the Toronto area, there will be a CD release accompanied by a similarly themed artshow at the Tranzac on November 7..

Edward the Great...

When I was about seven or so, I first saw the cover to Iron Maiden's "Killers" at a record store and it pretty much scared me half to death. You have to admit that makes for an effective cover. Being a good little catholic at the time, I saw anything to do with the band as completely satanic and I would be disturbed any time I saw a teenager sporting a t-shirt with Maiden mascot Eddie's mug plastered on it (although I was secretly fascinated). By the time I was in my early teens I came to my senses, became a full fledged metal nerd and Eddie became my new hero. The more I saw of the artwork on their albums, singles and merchandise as done by Derek Riggs, the more I'd want to be able to draw like him and would scrawl Eddie after Eddie in whatever notebook or school binder I had available. I became a huge comic book reader around the same time and thanks to these influences I put away my dreams of becoming either a yuppie or a pro wrestler and decided that being an artist would be my goal in life.
This homage to the "Killers" cover was done for the third issue of Uppercase Magazine (link) in a section called "Cover Me". Here a variety of illustrators and designers re-interpreted some of their favourite album covers in some pretty radical ways, so check out the magazine if you get the chance. "Killers" is not my favourite of the classic Iron Maiden covers, but I figured that since it's effect on me indirectly influenced my future career choice, it would get the nod....

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Label Extinction

Bon Vivant column, Tidings Magazine-October 2009
On newstands now....

Profile In Now Then Magazine



Top: Cover Image, Now Then Magazine-October 2009
Bottom: Poster Insert, Now Then Magazine-October 2009

I recently had the honour of having my work profiled in issue 19 of "Now Then" which is a free independent arts and culture magazine based out of Sheffield in the UK. I'd like to give my thanks to Mr. Matt Jones (link) for having me be a part of this and for the continuing excellent work on the magazine. Check out some back issues here including a link to a free download of issue #19.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Three Years of Tidings-Pt.3

Left: Barrel History-Dec. 08/Jan. 2009
Right: Uneasy Cork-Feb./March 2009
Left: Screwcap Controversy-April 2009
Right: Starting a Collection-May/June 2009
Left: Sunshine Wine-July/Aug. 2009
Right: Silent "E"-Sept. 2009

Three Years of Tidings-Pt.2


Left: War of the Worlds-Oct. 2007
Right: Tons of Body-Nov. 2007
Left: Picky Families-Dec. 2007/Jan. 2008
Right: Fit to Drink-Feb./March 2008

Left: Pairing Pizza-April 2008
Right: Sugar Overload-May 2008
Left: Cooking Wines-Oct. 2008
Right: Ancient Tipples-Nov. 2008

Three Years of Tidings-Pt.1

This fall marks three years of my longest lasting recurring gig, which is illustrations for the "Bon Vivant" column in Tidings, which is a bimonthly wine magazine based out of Montreal(link).
The funny thing about this being one of the more fun jobs I've had, is that I don't drink. Never have. But I digress, here's to a fun three years. Here's some of my "greatest hits" if you will...

Left: Nouveau Wine-Nov. 2006
Right: Stop With the Cheese-Feb./March 2007


Left: Classy Chablis-April 2007
Right: Beautiful Legs-May/June 2007
Left: Terroir Talk-July/Aug. 2007
Right: Great Finds-Sept. 2007

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Rated R Show-The Aftermath (With Pictures!)

Last night (Sept. 18) was the opening of the The Rated R Show, in the tight confines of the Gladstone Hotel's Art Bar (here's a link for you non Torontonians). Although my time there was brief, it was a fairly fun night, largely spent reminiscing about mid-90's 'zine shows with fellow survivor, and show participant, Jennifer Ellison.
There's a great variety of work to be seen, so if you're in the Toronto area from now until October first, please try and check it out.
A big thanks and hi fives to show curators Eric Kim and Mara Sternberg. I hope they managed to finally get some sleep after last night.
And now, pictures....



Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Rated R Show-Sept. 18-Oct. 1 2009 (Rude Word Warning)

An Exhibition of 16 Artists
Curated by Mara Sternberg & Eric Kim
Art Bar at the Gladstone Hotel
September 18th to October 1st 2009
Opening Night: September 18th, 7pm-11pm

Guaranteed to arouse, disturb and amuse, The Rated R Show is an exciting new outlet for local artists to explore adult subject matter. Sixteen professional illustrators, photographers, fine artists, video game and comic artists have been given the freedom to tackle the taboo.

The resulting body of work is as diverse as it's creators; Anthony Brennan, Greg Boychuk, Erin and Kelly Carty, Mike Collier, Matt Daley, Jen Ellison, Melanie Gillis, Paul Hillier, Eric Kim (curator), Alex Leitch, Nadine Lessio, Deryk Ouseley, Corey Pierce, Mara Sternberg (curator), Miguel Sternberg and Kyla Vanderklugt.

Their works have appeared in such notable publications as NY magazine, Scholastic, Xtra, Photo Life Magazine, The Globe and Mail, The Toronto Star and Diva Magazine UK, as well as graphic novels published by Oni Press. Other accomplishments include exhibitions at Smash Gallery, Lonsdale Gallery, and Sweet Art Gallery. The work has also been recognized by both American Illustration and Applied Arts.

The artists have all approached the term "Rated R" however they saw fit, whether indulging in juvenile humour, pursuing darker themes, or celebrating sexuality without shame. Among them are Kyla Vanderklugt and Paul Hillier. Vanderklugt, a local illustrator, has created a series of gory but beautiful paintings entitled "Breaking Up the Band", inspired by the unpleasant ends of several ruling dynasties. Hillier, by contrast, is exhibiting photographs that explore Shibari, the intricate art of Japanese rope bondage. One such image features a bound and tattooed model topped by a victorious toy Transformer. These are just a few of the many unique directions taken by the artists when freed from restrictions.

The Rated R Show takes over The Art Bar at The Gladstone Hotel for two weeks beginning September 18th and running until October 1st. The September 18th opening reception (7pm-11pm) will take place during The Gladstone's annual kickoff party for The Queen West Art Crawl. A looping projection of "Maverick", a documentary on flesh hook suspension by video artist Madison Cawker, will be a part of the exhibit on the opening night alone. Saucy gift bags are available for the first hundred people that attend.

MEDIA: For more information on The Rated R Show, contact organizers Eric Kim and Mara Sternberg at 647-222-3009 or 647-400-7287 or media@ratedrshow.com. For images relating to this event, please visit our website at http://ratedrshow.com/media/

SPONSORS: The Rated R Show is made possible thanks to the support of The Beguiling, The Central Bar & Restaurant, the AIDS Committee of Toronto, YYZ Records, Come As You Are, Sleeman Breweries, Pomophobe Productions, Canvas Creative Solutions, and Glamour Puss Burlesque.

LOCATION: The Gladstone Hotel is located at 1214 Queen Street West.

DIRECTIONS & PARKING: http://www.gladstonehotel.com/information.html

GALLERY HOURS: 12-5pm Daily

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Here are my contributions to this little pow wow. Oh my stars and garters...




Top: "Fairy Godmother"-12x9 Giclee Print
Bottom: "Mamabicho"- 12x9 Giclee Print

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A Tattoo For Mr. Sutherland....

Left: Final tattoo design for Sam Sutherland
Right: First draft of the design

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Vilipend Part 2...





Layout for Vilipend CD "Love Left to Rot"-Self Released 2009

Vilipend Part 1...




I'm considered the go to guy when it comes to doing design work for my friend Chris' band Vilipend (myspace). Here's a recent hoodie design...

Lonely Robots-The Aftermath...

The Lonely Robots show took place on July 16th and it turned out to be a great evening and a great overall success. The turnout was healthy, making things a bit on the humid side in the gallery space, but plenty of people enjoyed what they saw and were interested to see what this group was going to pull off next. Big hugs and a huge round of applause for Mr. Damian Zuch, for his unwavering dedication in making the show happen, all the artists involved for some great work and for their enthusiasm, and to our hosts at the Magic Pony for being top notch. Nice to meet many of the participants that I'd never crossed paths with. If you're Facebook enabled some pics from the event can be found at this here spot.
Here's my contribution to the show entitled "A Bot in the Belly"....

Michael Kupperman Interview...

The AV club has a great interview up with cartoonist/illustrator Michael Kupperman (of the fantastic "Tales Designed to Thrizzle") where he talks about his work, animation and writing gags on twitter. It's also got a bit of insight as to the problems facing freelance illustrators these days with many of the publishing options going down the toilet and budgets being slashed. Check it out here

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Captain America...


I've been enjoying some of the collections of Ed Brubaker's take on the good Captain (except the library doesn't have vol. 3!!) and I decided to do this for fun...

Captain America copyright © 2009 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Custom Cards....


TOP: In honour of the birth of Benjamin Oppermann, son of my friends Paul and Jen. March 2009
BOTTOM: Commemorating the 40th birthday of my friend Greg Dawson. June 2009