What’s in a Name?

I’ve been signing my name for over two decades. Over the years my signature really hasn’t changed all that much. It’s not fancy or creative. It’s not particularly neat or overly messy. It’s just… my signature.

I’ve had some real jealous moments when I see other artists’ signatures. From creative layouts to unique flairs, these other signatures had that special quality I always thought mine should possess. I am, after all, an artist by trade. My gift is creativity. But my signature always seemed to fall flat.

Finally I decided to design a new signature–something that was more of a logo than a cursive mark. I have a small amount of proficiency in Photoshop and came up with something I’m quite fond of.

This custom design I had turned into a handful of rubber stamps in different sizes. So when you order a custom painting from me in the future, you may find this signature stamp in the corner. And my hand signature will be on the back of the painting.

Holy Common Bird Sightings, B-Man!

A couple weeks ago I got a notice from Etsy. This painting of mine was one of many listings across Etsy to be targeted by Warner Brothers as copyright infringement.

I try to draw from my own original creativity when painting, but it’s pretty hard not to allow some influences seep in and usually it’s other artists’ styles that can be found in some pieces of my work. I never copy and I definitely don’t steal (which is more than I can say for Ali Express, which has made a habit of thieving my work and selling prints of it online).

Have you picked up yet on what part of this painting was considered intellectual property? You might have to squint. Ah, yes, there it is. The green mask adorned by the American robin. (That’s lower-cased robin, not capitalized, since the latter might be crossing a line.)

It’s a common bird that signifies the return of spring. And it happens to be wearing an iconic mask that signifies a sidekick of a character once portrayed by Adam West.

When I painted it, I meant it to be a pun. Or at least a meta joke. It’s a general reference that most people would get. But evidently it’s not allowed.

I was surprised that the Warner Brothers scout would have even noticed that little mask. And I was even more surprised that something so trivial would have invited the wrath of the copyright police. Is that mask really copyrighted?

Well, after digging a little deeper, I found my true error. In the list of tags that I included in my Etsy listing (words that might be entered as a key phrase for shoppers), I actually used the definitely-copyrighted B–man word. You know what I mean, right? The fellow once played by Adam West.

Obviously I should’ve known better than to use that specific proper noun. To amend my misdeeds, I now will donate every penny of the purchase price of this painting to Asbury Woods, a local nonprofit. And let that be a lesson to me.

Watch Me Paint This Opossum In Under One Minute

I try to record a time lapse of me painting at least twice a month. I may not always meet that goal, but at least I try! This is my most recently recorded painting. It’s watercolor with some acrylic paint on a 4×6″ cold-pressed watercolor block.

If you enjoyed this video and want to see more, follow me on Instagram where I post regularly!

We’re a Small Shop and We Love Shopping Small

As an artist and a small business owner, I know how much time and commitment can go into a craft. I know how frustrating it is to be overlooked because something similar to my hand-crafted product is being mass-produced overseas for a fraction of the cost. I also know what it’s like to be a drop in a bucket of artist who are just trying to be seen.

Because all of those struggles are so familiar to me, I always try to shop small and shop local. Wherever I can, I support fellow artists and small businesses. I spend a lot of time perusing Etsy (parsing through the AliExpress accounts pretending to be small artists) and have made some really amazing purchases on there.

I’d like to share some of those purchases for anyone else who’s interested. Here’s a review of some really cool espresso cups I bought recently. I’ve been using them daily for months and they are holding up perfectly.

If you want to read about them and find the link to buy your own, or check out what else the seller has in their shop, you can read my full blog post below.

Terry Crews in Under 2 minutes

This under-2-minute video is a time lapse painting tutorial of actor Terry Crews. Painted on an 8×10″ hand-cut sheet of watercolor paper and using Windsor & Newton watercolor paints, this video will show my painting process in lightning speeds. Take a peek and maybe try your hand at your own portrait!

Please feel free to post any questions in the comments below or on my YouTube page. I’ll try to answer them quickly!

If you enjoy this video, please give it a thumbs up and subscribe for more tutorials! I’m so thankful for your support!

Miniature Portrait Time Lapse

This 2.5-minute video shows a time lapse of my most recent miniature pet portrait. It is painted on a 4×4″ hand-cut sheet of watercolor paper and using Windsor & Newton watercolor paints. Take a peek and maybe try your hand at my whimsical, messy style of pet portraiture!

Please feel free to post any questions in the comments below or on my YouTube page. I’ll try to answer them quickly!

If you enjoy this video, please give it a thumbs up and subscribe for more tutorials! I’m so thankful for your support!

Billie the Chihuahua Mix

This 5.75-minute video is a time lapse painting of four dogs. Painted on a 12×12″ hand-cut sheet of watercolor paper and using Windsor & Newton watercolor paints, this video shows different angles as I complete the portrait. Take a peek and maybe try your hand at my whimsical, messy style of pet portraiture!

Please feel free to post any questions in the comments below or on my YouTube page. I’ll try to answer them quickly!

If you enjoy this video, please give it a thumbs up and subscribe for more tutorials! I’m so thankful for your support!

Woman and Skull Time Lapse

From the archive: This video is a time lapse acrylic finger painting tutorial of a woman blowing away a skull. Painted on a 16×20″ stretched canvas, this video will show my painting process in lightning speeds. Take a peek and maybe try your hand at your own fun art!

Please feel free to post any questions in the comments below or on my YouTube page. I’ll try to answer them quickly!

If you enjoy this video, please give it a thumbs up and subscribe for more tutorials! I’m so thankful for your support!

Deep Sea Tentacles Time Lapse

From the archive: This video is a time lapse acrylic finger painting tutorial of a seascape transitioning from light to dark, where octopus tentacles are reaching. Painted on a 16×20″ stretched canvas, this video will show my painting process in lightning speeds. Take a peek and maybe try your hand at your own fun art!

Please feel free to post any questions in the comments below or on my YouTube page. I’ll try to answer them quickly!

If you enjoy this video, please give it a thumbs up and subscribe for more tutorials! I’m so thankful for your support!

Dapper Mountain Time Lapse Art

This video is a time lapse acrylic finger painting tutorial of a mustachioed, bespectacled mountain. Painted on a 16×20″ stretched canvas, this video will show my painting process in lightning speeds. Take a peek and maybe try your hand at your own fun landscape!

Please feel free to post any questions in the comments below or on my YouTube page. I’ll try to answer them quickly!

If you enjoy this video, please give it a thumbs up and subscribe for more tutorials! I’m so thankful for your support!