Robert Saunders
Whatever interests me
Sloan Snags a Silver
Michael Sloan receiving his silver medal from Committee Chair Tim O'Brien at the Society of Illustrators 49th Annual Exhibition Sequential Awards Gala.
I want to congratulate my pal and Half-Tone mate, Michael Sloan, for winning a Silver Medal in sequential art for his full-length illustrated novel (without words), The Heresy of Professor Nimbus, from the Society of Illustrators. You couldn't find a nicer guy or more dedicated artist. Michael went to New York to receive the honor Tuesday night. I asked him if I could put a notice about it here. Photos of the event were nil, so the image above will serve to illustrate the occasion.

You can find out all about this 60-page book at:
Maiden Voyage of Today
Congratulations to on their big launch today. It's a great day in the neighborhood! People are dancing in the streets, artists are coming together and rejoicing, and critics are predicting the dawning of a new paradigm. is a smart new venue for art directors and designers to acquaint themselves with distinguished illustrators, view their working methods, their latest projects, sketches, whimsical creations, read blogs, and collaborate in cool, streamlined ways. More to come...
Victory in da House
Ooh! Ouch! Ow! Ooh!
I've trotted out a few of my stock illustrations on the morning after the Republicans' defeat, to make the point that this is what Congress is going to do to the White House now that the Democrats have taken back the majority of seats in the House. It is time to hold the lobbyists', Bush admininistration's, and crooked politicians' feet to the fire. First off, I'm hoping there will be a renewed ethics committee, then an investigation of laws broken by the administration, and a restoring of the inspector general's office on waste and fraud by contractors in the Iraq war.
I want Congress to get rid of the bad apples—even Democratic ones—
...and restore ownership of this country to the people who pay the bills and hunger for a little bit of justice.
Doin' the Right Thing
I did my civic duty today, and boy do I feel proud. I was able to mark everything in the right place without getting befuddled. I have no doubt we're going to hear before the end of the day that there have been voting irregularities somewhere in the nation, so brace yourselves. It could get wild out there!

What a country.

PS: In the interest of full disclosure, this silly pic was done on the subject of "Self-esteem" for some bleeding-heart-liberal health newsletter, sometime in the last century.
Haiku Lampoon
Did these images for Entertainment Weekly when they wanted some art for haiku to lampoon movie stars and couples in a "meditative" but ironic way. I submitted the art for the writer to insert the copy into, but the published haiku wasn't very funny. They must have felt it wasn't working, too, because after two of these ran, I never saw any more. I thought I could do better haiku myself, anyway. Haiku (1st line is 5 syllables, 2nd line 7, last line 5) is hard to do right. Try it and see.
Crib Boy
Ever do something like this? You do a job—this was for California Lawyer many moons ago. The subject is how a 16-year old victim of statutory rape by the mother of his child got dragged into court and sued for child support by the county. You send the final in. Then you realize: damn! I should have worked on that profile. It looks too much like a little man, like me, not like a kid. Well they were happy with the piece, no problem, so go figure. But I, in my obsession can see that the image doesn't really read as well as it should. So I take it into Photoshop later for the hell of it and tweak it so that... looks like this—now in my stock archive.
4/7 of The Half-Tones
It's rare that The Half-Tones pose for a pic, but here we are as a quartet at the Society of Illustrators Sketch Night a couple weeks ago. We really enjoy playing the Sketch Nights, which take place every Tuesday and 3rd Thursday of the month. In the drawing sessions there are live models, music and an open bar, and on Thursday, a buffet. Not too shabby, no? is redolent of Toulouse-Lautrec and the demimonde—all that's lacking is the absinthe! From left, Barry, Joe, Rob, and Michael.
Saunders Humorous Illustration
In a perfect world...
Ebullient abuse
We've all seen a metric ton of these things. Well, here's this season's first cheery entreaty to come spill your creative gifts for free.The "proposal" this AD's  putting forth is slimy: Persuading innocent lambies with visions of stardom in their eyes to vie for the privilege of working on spec...effectively a call for free labor. I love the cheery tone to the exploitative phrases: "Want to add manacles and ball-and-chain to your drawing board? Go for it!" And they sent this to me? I didn't squander the best years of my life on the Graphic Artists Guild's executive committee for nothing. Go for it!

City Pages, Wine & Dine

Request for Proposals

This proposal is for City Pages’ cover design of Wine & Dine, an annual special issue.
Please visit <> to see last year’s cover design and editorial content. The issue is generally heavy in wine content and restaurant advertisers.

For the 2006 cover, we are looking to step out in a new direction. Descriptive words that have been tossed around are “vibrant” and “modern”. Elements that decidedly need to be present are a person/people and a wine glass/bottle. Beyond that, we are willing to go wherever you take us.

Please note that your cover design should leave room for the logo/text. We are not set on the previous year’s logo and will adapt this year’s logo with respect to the design chosen. If you find yourself inspired to create a logo and incorporate it into your design, go for it! Be sure to include the City Pages logo, “Wine & Dine” and the year.

Full color, full bleed, glossy cover illustration.

SIZE: Bleed - 10.5" x 12.5", Live space - 10" x 12"
Ideally the illustration should work on its own and have vignettes which can be cropped for use as spot illustrations.

DELIVERY: Prefer electronic delivery (300dpi for RGB JPEG). Other means can be arranged if necessary. FTP transfer is available.

This is for the chosen illustration only:
Working sketch October 5, 5:00pm (Th)
Final artwork October 20, 5:00 p.m. (F)
Publication Date November 8, 5:00 p.m. (W)

$300-500, commensurate with experience. In addition, the illustrator is allowed a visible signature or accreditation in the illustration.

If you are interested in pursuing this project please e-mail me a proposal containing
(1) a written description and (2) a “faxable” sketch of your concept by September 25, 5:00pm (M). Contact me at, 612.343.9515 or fax 612.372.3737. All entries will be notified of decision by September 28, 5:00pm (Th).

Thanks much for your consideration!

Dana Graham
Art Director
concrete poetry
Kids' Faces
I drew these in my sketchbook when I was feeling incapable of drawing (I feel that way a lot of the time). I looked in the newspaper for photos, anything at all to draw just to get me out of my misery, and I saw an ad for like, kids at risk or something. They had cute faces. I assume that they were photographed when they were showing their candid emotions. I drew 'em really teeny (here they are more grandiose—I still have to master the image-sizing thing). Sometimes just going through the motions of observing and recording things gets you warmed up even if it's from newsprint. I'd like to draw from life more, but my nearsightedness is making that harder. Anyway looking back at these faces I like how human the subjects are.
Why should I blog?
I could use a little input here. I'm conflicted. Why blog? I tried it and quit once already. So this is my second attempt. Isn't there enough to do in a day already? How long can a person keep this up?

Do you blog for commercial, artistic, reasons, or PR, image? Do you do it to break out of an illustrator's isolation? Is blogging working for you? Thanks for humoring me. I'll get some art up on here soon.
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