Monday, March 31, 2014

Maccentric Mascot

My good friend and Mac guru Thomas Avallone owns Maccentric, Shreveport’s own Apple-Authorized Service Provider. They do great work, and I’m almost waiting for my iMac to crash so I can let his crew work their magic (well, I’m hoping it doesn’t crash anytime soon, but you get the idea). Here’s a short documentary about Maccentric and what they do:

In preparation for the grand opening of their fancy new location, we decided to work together and create a mascot...and it turned out pretty awesome! The following is a peek into the creative process of how “Max” came to be.

Thomas was open for anything, which gave me plenty of room to experiment – in the end, I decided to go with a sleek, Apple-inspired design (with a TOOMASOOBA flair, of course), pulling from different products and UI designs from years’ past to assemble the main elements of our hero.

Max's head and body were inspired by the iMac G4. His face was inspired by the
classic "Happy Mac" icon. His kinda mouse-like?
After discussing and making a few little tweaks, the final design
was carefully crafted in Adobe Illustrator and is now ready for primetime.

So there you go! It was fun to collaborate on this project and create a character that represents an amazing locally-owned company. Max will be available on shirts and other items from Maccentric in the coming months. Keep an eye out.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Skate or Die (and Make Art)

Thanks to the Shreveport Regional Arts Council, legendary pro skateboarder and artist Steve Olson is in town working on a number of crazy projects — it's been pretty insane (in a good way). Friday night was the opening of the show "GENERATIONLESS: Skateboarders are Artists Too!" featuring art and photography from Steve and other skateboard gods like Lance Mountain, Tim Kerr, Dave Hackett, Dennis McNett, and others. AND they were all in attendance at the opening. AND there is a skate ramp in the gallery. AND local roster artists (myself included) were invited to design (and sell) a skateboard to be displayed alongside these fellas as part of the show. So…that's awesome. It's an honor to have TOOMASOOBA in such good company.

If you follow TOOMA on Instagram, then you many have seen in-progress shots of the board already. I wanted to document the process here as well, since it was the first time I'd done anything of the sort...and it was a really, really cool project. Hope you enjoy the step-by-step.

The blank board. I decided to feature a handful of Boomers on my first stab at deck art.
A quick mockup to ensure the design would fit properly (and look generally cool, too).
Tom Petty looks on and provides guidance.
Once I plotted the vinyl (with help from Luke Lee at Fusiform Design Workshop),
it was time to weed, a.k.a. "remove everything that's not a little vampire robot."
From there,  I met up with my buddy (and my Workshop Yoda) Paul King of Index Drums.
We sanded, spackled, taped, and...
...painted that board yellow. Bright yellow. Paul made an amazing board himself.
Click here to check it out — the dude does great work.
No turning back! Time to apply the vinyl — I was a bit nervous going into this part,
but it went smooth as silk. I purposely made my design slightly askew so I wouldn't drive
myself crazy trying to get every little element straight.
The final board! Pretty pumped about how it turned out. Go see it (along with
amazing decks by local artist friends) at Artspace through March 29th. And try
that ramp for yourself if you're feeling brave.