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.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Porter Flea Holiday Market 2013

I headed up to Nashville, TN, for last weekend’s Porter Flea Holiday Market – it was rainy. And cold. And I had a cold. But I didn't let that stop me - the Flea was fantastic as always, with huge crowds and plenty of holiday cheer to go around! I love getting the opportunity to join in with other artists to sell shirts and meet new friends and fans along the way. Many thanks to organizers Katie, Brent, and Jessica for tirelessly making magic again and again.

As always, photos are below – check ‘em out. Click here, here, and here for a look at previous adventures in Nashville!

The table set-up. I wanted to add some height for the Flea, and I think it turned out
pretty sharp. The show was Friday evening and all day Saturday this time around.
A wide shot of the space at Track One. Grimey's provided awesome music all day.
My good friends Barb and Dave saved the day while I was feeling under the weather.
I can't thank them enough for makin' sales while I took breaks for cold medicine.
God bless America, and God bless TOOMASOOBA.
Oh, and the below happened, too...I need to work on my moves.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Fall 2013 Makers Fair

This Saturday marked my sixth experience at the TAMF and, for the first time, a bit of rain showed up in the afternoon – but that didn't dampen the spirit of the (massive) crowds, no sir. Partnering with Shreveport Regional Arts Council's UNSCENE event this time around, the Fair was large and in-charge and awesome as always. I've said it before, but it's amazing to have an event like this in my hometown. I've done fairs far and wide, and this one is always a highlight!

Many thanks to Kelly and Garrett and all those with the Texas Avenue Community Association who make it happen. Below are a handful of photos from the day.

Here's the TOOMA booth along with my TAMF neighbor & friend Kelly Rich.
Read about her shotgun house project NORLA here! She's making things happen.
The Queensborough Elementary Flag & Drum Line marches through the Makers Fair.
Pete eats fire. Nathan drops beats.
I've had prime booth space these past few fairs and I'm glad for it.
Jake and I will defend TOOMA turf to our last breath, so watch out.
New fan Gavin poses with his Roddy print – cool face paint, even cooler kid!
Look at the joy in Jack's face as he hangs out at the TOOMASOOBA table. I love it.
This might just serve as my new promotional photo – what do you think?

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


As the lines and colors and attitudes of TOOMASOOBA characters evolve, I sometimes retire a "classic" design that's a bit outdated and replace it with a newer illustration that matches the current aesthetic. But don't worry, friends…like any good horror movie villain, they always come back! Below is a look at two of my earliest creations dating back to 2009 who were recently re-imagined and are available online once again.

Roboy, 2009 and today.
Owlivia, 2009 and today.

Big (and better) difference, huh? Perhaps you'll see more TOOMA veterans let loose on the world again in the coming months. Glad to have RoBoy and Owlivia back in action!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Rhino Birthday Party

Rhino Coffee recently held their one-year birthday party, and TOOMASOOBA was there to help celebrate! A handful of vendors and bands were asked to join in for an evening of caffeine and revelry — Index Drums, Day Old Blues Records, Art Punch, Engine, Joshua Powell, Jacob Disedare, and Kyle Craft were some of the talented makers and rockers doing their thing.

The place was packed throughout the evening — it was a great time. I debuted a couple of new shirts and prints, spread the TOOMA word with folks who hadn’t encountered my art before, and, of course, I also had plenty of coffee. If you happen to stop by, might I suggest an Eastside Latte or Iced Thunder, perhaps?

Rhino is a cool, independent business that supports the local community (and vice versa) — I’m glad they’re thriving here in Shreveport. Here’s to many more years!

A rad hand-drawn sign to announce those involved.
I was glad to be set up inside, where there was air conditioning. I was not
so glad to be photobombed by James of Day Old Blues.
Kyle Craft doing his solo thing. Listen to his music and thank me later.
Index Drums representing on the back patio.
Engine performing - these dudes are amazing. Buy their music now!
Shoppers checking out the TOOMA action.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

PRINT Workshop

Five Shreveport artists were chosen to join in a two-day screen print workshop with Modern Multiples’ Richard Duardo in mid-August — and I was one of 'em! It was awesome learning from a master (plus he's a really cool dude). The workshop was offered as part of the current PRINT exhibit at Artspace featuring seriographs by Richard and other print makers and designers, including street art rockstars Cryptik, Shepard Fairey, and Banksy! Whhhhaaaattttt?

The exhibit is up through October – so go check it out if you’re in the area! You can also view Richard’s artist talk for all the behind-the-scenes info. Definitely worth checking out (crank up the volume).

Many thanks to Shreveport Regional Arts Council for making this happen, and to my fellow UNSCENE Street Team artists: Ben Moss, Taffie Cragon Garsee, John H. Lomax, and Jeormie Journell. See more photos on my Facebook album. Rock on!

Our playground - a recreation of Richard's early workshop space.
Ben and John making magic as Richard looks on.
Experimenting with spray paint on our demo prints.
Drying racks.
Richard during his artist talk - this is some of his "pop schlock" work, as he calls it.
The gang - it was honor to work with these talented artists. Left to right:
Jeormie, me, Ben, Britt, Taffie, Richard, and John.