December 23, 2013

Happy Holidays!

 This is from an early version of Shrek's Holiday special.

December 09, 2013

November 20, 2013

If you'd like to head to Vegas in a couple of weeks...

I'm going to be a part of the Autodesk CAVE conference in Las Vegas on December 2 at 2:45pm. My presentation is:

Storytelling and the Hidden Language of Production Design

Storytelling is successful when an audience is not consciously aware of the underlying visual design, it just feels right. Artists find real success when they learn how to visually connect with their audience on an emotional level. In this presentation, concept designer and animation artist Nathan Fowkes will take you on a behind the scenes look at how the visual storytelling process can be designed to powerfully affect viewers emotions through the subtle use of color, light, shape and space. Nathan will share concepts as well as experiences and anecdotes based on his 18 years working with such notable clients as DreamWorks, Disney and Blue Sky.

CAVE Conference is dedicated to bringing together artists, designers, and storytellers to explore and celebrate the fundamental spirit that traverses these creative domains and disciplines. CAVE welcomes professionals and aspiring professionals alike!

November 18, 2013

It was fantastic to meet all of you who came out to CTNX, and great to reconnect with some of the Superstars who were mentors to me on my first feature, The Prince of Egypt.

Here's one of my scenes with the original color key sketch:

November 12, 2013

My CTNX Demo Saturday at 4pm!

For those of you attending CTNX this weekend, stop by and join me Saturday at 4 to 4:45pm in the digital atrium for my demonstration. The topic will be using color and light as major design elements for concept art.

And I'm looking forward to meeting those of you who signed up for my Friday workshop (sold out).

See you there!

October 14, 2013

A Full $100 Off My Self Taught Class, Sale Ends Friday

The sale is now over, thanks so much for the overwhelming response! The class will remain available at this link as self taught or fully critiqued. I hope to have a chance to work with you in the future.

Give your work beauty and artistry, drama and emotion, give it designed color and light! A full $100 off the regular price for the self taught class until Friday October 18. Now is the the moment you've been waiting for! Easy signup here.

September 30, 2013

Sign up for my CTN Animation Expo workshop!

This event is now sold out but I am doing a presentation/demo on the main floor Saturday afternoon at 4pm. See you there!

I hope to see you all at the CTN Animation Expo this year! My workshop is on Friday Nov. 15, 5:30pm and is now taking enrollments. Only $10, sign up while seats last!  Click this link and go to the third one down called "How to Find Artistry"

Here's a description:

Finding Artistry and Elegant Simplicity in Complex Concept Art 

As an animation artist, you'll be required to find beautiful artistry and clarity within challenging and complex subject matter. Whether it's sophisticated architecture, busy foliage or a landscape filled characters, this workshop will give you tools to meet the challenge!

September 18, 2013

My Self Taught Online Course: Designing with Color and Light Fall Sale!

Give your work beauty and artistry, drama and emotion, give it designed color and light! A full $100 off the regular price. Now is the the moment you've been waiting for! Easy signup here.

September 12, 2013

Florianopolis Brazil Workshop!

For any of you in Brazil, I'm very excited to travel to Florianopolis for workshops with Pixar's Louis Gonzales on November 2-3

See you there!

August 19, 2013

Online Portrait Drawing Course!

Study portrait drawing with me from anywhere in the world in my online class Drawing the Portrait in Charcoal. It begins January 13, 2014, enrollment is limited, sign up today! Hosted by the great people at LAAFA!

I've done my best to make this class the strongest such class on the market, it includes nine fully illustrated,  jam packed audio/video lectures, twelve video drawing demonstrations showing a wide variety of subjects, techniques and materials, and weekly homework assignments that will build on themselves to teach you a clearer, better way to work from life.

I'll work with you personally each week, you'll get a full audio/video critique of your work where I'll talk through with you what's working in your drawing and what can be improved. I'll draw over your image to give you a personalized demonstration for every assignment you turn in.

This class is designed to show you how to make drawing cease to be a source of frustration and become a pleasure, I'm looking forward to working with you.

August 05, 2013

Landscape Quicksketch

Sketches in the vicinity of Crystal Springs Reservoir, California.

July 08, 2013

San Diego Comic-con!

I hope to see you at San Diego Comic-con this year.
I have 2 presentations at the Schoolism booth (booth# 2042):
  1. Finding the simple solution to complex scenes, Friday, July 19, 1:55pm - 2:55pm.
  2. Photoshop Demo: building a scene with color and light, Saturday, July 20, 1:55pm - 2:55pm
See you there!

June 18, 2013

The Reveal

Color key sketch for the intro of The Legend of Puss in Boots.

June 04, 2013

The job I almost had but thank goodness I didn't

The art director called me to do the paintings for this commercial. He said they needed a landscape painter to do paintings that would appear in a Subaru commercial about a guy who used his Subaru to travel to remote locations to sketch. The paintings would be meant to capture the beauty of each location.

As often happens in TV they pulled out at the last minute saying there was a story change and they were changing the tone of the artwork they wanted to use.

I love how the commercial turned out and I'm so glad my work was deemed inappropriate for it :)

You can see my landscape sketching blog here and the whole enchilada here. They are mostly 30 minute sketchbook studies with the occasional larger work.

June 03, 2013

Sketchbook Quick Study

Watercolor with white gouache in a heavy weight oatmeal paper sketchbook. 2002

May 28, 2013

Pasadena Workshop June 15!

This will be a thorough and intensive workshop for designing compelling animation and game environments. Saturday June 15, 2-7 pm. Enroll online at Concept Design Academy.

See you there!

May 20, 2013

Shrek Village

This one is from a ways back, 2005 I think. We needed a take on a traditional medieval village. It's a collaboration, Henrik Tamm did the layout and I painted it.

April 29, 2013


I do enjoy the challenge of quicksketch drawing. Hopefully the face reads passably here because the goal was to do the entire profile with 1 stroke only. It's done by varying the pressure on the flat side of a compressed charcoal stick.

April 08, 2013

Self taught version of my online class special sale!

If you've been interested in my online entertainment design class but haven't been able to get into the sold out sessions or if you're on a tight budget you'll be glad to know that the self study version is available at $100 off the regular price until April 26th, 2013 @ 3:00am.  Don't miss out!

If you'd like to study portrait drawing with me in self taught format, that's available too! click here for the portrait drawing class.

March 18, 2013

February 25, 2013

SiDEBAR Interview

My interview with the gang over at SiDEBAR has just been released. You can listen to it here and check out their many artist interviews at

February 19, 2013

Class demo, gouache on illustration board.
This painting is available on the Original Art for Sale page.

February 11, 2013

February 04, 2013

January 13, 2013

January 07, 2013

Charcoal on Rives lightweight paper.

And a reminder, my new 9 week online class: Drawing the Portrait in Charcoal begins January 21, you can study with me from anywhere in the world, enrollment is limited, sign up today!

January 02, 2013

Keeping the Dream Alive...

The resolution that I have always kept: an extra study a day, every day until the sun goes out.