Thursday, June 28, 2012


I'm always scheming and sketching out new TOOMASOOBA designs, but between the ol' day job, show & product prep, and a million other things, I don't sit down and finish off a digital illustration as often as I should. Of course, I miss the creative thrill that it TOOMACHALLENGE 2012 (a.k.a. TC12) was born!

Here's how it's gonna work: Every Monday in July and August, I will post a new Tooma-character that I've crafted the week before. Most will start from collected sketches (see below), though many designs will veer far from the initial idea...that's all part of the fun. I'll discuss the creative evolution and even give you guys a chance to name the character (with prizes in store if your idea is chosen).

TC12 begins on Monday, July 2nd...check back soon for the first installment. Boom!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Porter Report

One of my 2012 TOOMASOOBA goals included showing work in a new state or two...and now I can mark Tennessee off the list! I was honored to be chosen as a vendor for the Porter Flea in Nashville last weekend  awesome show, great venue, non-stop crowds. One of the best markets that I've been a part of so far.

I was glad to have my long-time friend (and Nashvillian) David Brooks as my right-hand man for the day. He came up with some funny sales pitches that I totally plan to use again (and probably take credit for) down the road. Thanks for joining me in the trenches, Dave!

Many thanks to Katie, Brent, and all of the organizers who put the show together...I truly appreciate your hustle. And check out the work of some of my new friends like David Pound (Twenty Heads), Chris Hamer (UrbnPop), and Tim Cook. You'll enjoy their art.

Oh shoot, almost forgot  Mike Wolfe (from American Pickers) was there to check out the show, too. Not gonna lie, I got a little starstruck when he strolled by my table. See y'all at the holiday Flea in December!

This was a fantastic venue! And indoors, too, which is a great thing in the middle of June.
Photo by Emily Spence.
Setting up so quickly I was just one big blur.
Where's TOOMASOOBA? Photo by Emily Spence.
Boomabot wants to be your friend.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Takin' It to the Streets

Back in January of this year, my friends (and talented artists) Nadine Charity, Robert Trudeau, and Kathryn Usher posted some artwork at the corner of Kings Highway and Youree Drive in Shreveport  and it intrigued me from the start. Recently, I was able to join in on a "hanging" at En Plein Air (a.k.a. Beauty Supply Gallery a.k.a. Gallery BS) and add my art to the mix.

I've always been a bit inspired by Obey Giant, and this project definitely got me pumped. Don't be surprised if you see more of these popping up around town...and, um, if the cops ask, you don't know who is responsible for these shenanigans, okay?

Tony Reans was there to document the process  below are several great photos from the evening. You can view a complete online gallery here!

Hello, it's a big ol' Ninjacat.
Nadine and Robert showing me the ropes. And the Elmer's glue.
Originally we planned to hang the art up high, but the surface wasn't agreeable.
Making sure it's stuck real good.
Partners in crime.
The finished product.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

There Will Be Bots: Part 2

It's time to chronicle part two of Boomabot assembly. Did you miss part one? Well then, click here. And if you want to learn a little more about Boomabot, check out this video!

With the protective covering now removed, it was time to line 'em up and
get started with the glue. This blue and green robot army is coming together nicely.
We'll try some different colors next time.
At Cassidy's suggestion, I picked up some Weld-On Solvent Cement to adhere
all the pieces together properly — though things went smoothly, I may go for the brush-on
version next time (the tube tended to clog and make the glue a bit stringy).
After a bit of dry time, I cleaned off all the fingerprint smudges and attached the bots
to their bases...originally I planned to glue them down, but they seemed to stand great
without it (also allowing the option of a reversal base and easier packaging). All done!

I'm quite proud of how these little fellas turned out, and I hope you like them too  they'll be officially unveiled at the Porter Flea in Nashville this weekend and I will put the rest in my Etsy shop as soon as I return, so keep an eye out.

Many thanks to Cassidy Keim for his expertise and enthusiasm on this project...I look forward to collaborating again in the future. Boom! Boom!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

There Will Be Bots: Part 1

I'm always eager to try something new with my TOOMASOOBA creations and I've been fascinated with the idea of cnc fabrication for a long time. As it turns out, my buddy Cassidy Keim of Catalyst Design is quite the expert in such matters (check out the amazing work on his website and prepare to be amazed).

After a few discussions, a few prototypes, and a few short drives to Ruston, Louisiana, the plexiglass Boomabot statue was born! I decided to chronicle the assembly process via a (two-part) step-by-step we go:

I eagerly picked up the box of bot parts at Cassidy's house...he was gracious enough
to do the laser cutting, but now it was time to get down to business.
First, I laid out the pieces to make sure all of the bots were good to go.
I had enough for ten statues  we figured that was a good starting point and
plan to produce another run in the future.
Though removing protective tape from acrylic was a tedious process,
it was still fun to see the various colors revealed. And I only stabbed myself twice
with the X-Acto knife. Be careful, kids.

Next up: Time to glue! Can you stand the suspense? Click here for part two of "There Will Be Bots."

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Inspiration Machine #5: Jean Jullien

I've had an iPad for awhile now and though I don't use it for anything overtly productive, it does offer the opportunity to relax on the couch and surf for inspiration  which is exactly how I found the work of Jean Jullien.

Jullien is a French designer living in London, and he works in a variety of media  all very bold, strange, playful, and pretty awesome. Check out his website...and take a look at the video below, too!