Happy Birthday, Steven Spielberg!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Today is the birthday of Steven Spielberg, one of the greatest film directors who ever existed. He is one of legendary film directors and screen writes who made Hollywood a real dream factory which unsurpassed creations never stop to excite generations of movie fans from all over the world. I just couldn’t help but draw a portrait of this genius to pay tribute to his talent and accomplishments which let our imagination take flight to the world of dreams and exiting impressions. Happy Birthday, Steven!

Steven Spielberg portrait
Steven Allan Spielberg


Pentel Pocket Brush Pen Drawing Videos

Saturday, December 17, 2011

If you follow my blog for a while you might know that the Pentel Pocket Brush Pen is one of my favorite drawing tools which I use almost in each my project either as a main drawing medium or as an auxiliary one. I was lucky to have discovered art supplies from Pentel a year or so ago. Today Pentel products are indispensable in my work as an artist.

drawing with a Pentel Pocket Brush Pen
Drawing with a Pentel Pocket Brush Pen

Work in Progress Videos

I would like to share a few work in progress videos featuring a Pentel Pocket Brush Pen as a main drawing tool:

Related posts:
Pentel art supplies in action
The best tool to outline drawings
Wacom Inkling


Military Pin-Up (Custom Gift)

Friday, December 16, 2011

I would like to show you another custom pin-up poster which was commissioned by a woman whose husband was in the military. This is the second pin-up created by me as a gift for a husband serving in the army. The first one was the Cowgirl pin-up.

military pin up girl with a rifle, saluting pinup
A military pin up girl with a rifle

There is nothing more exciting for a soldier who stays far away from home than knowing that he has a beautiful girlfriend / wife waiting for him to return home. A custom pin-up poster is a smart gift given by a wife to her husband to remember that he must get home safe and sound to experience again all that care and delights which only the beloved woman can offer.

Click here to see all my custom pin-ups on this blog
All my pin-up videos


Portrait of General George S. Patton

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Portrait of General George S. Patton is my other contribution to the Heritage t-shirt series produced by Buffalo and Company.

General George S. Patton
George Smith Patton, Jr.

Well, the US army has always been one of the most powerful armed forces of the modern world. It is naturally that such military power scares many of those who confronts and hates America openly or covertly. You can hear a lot of hateful words and accusation being said against the USA military activities in today’s world. But laying politics (which is a very dirty business sometimes) aside and leaving nothing but dry facts, one cannot deny that the United States of America have managed to build the most powerful army within a relatively short span of country’s history. And I am sure that whatever other nations think about America and their armed forces, the majority of the US citizens have a lot of reasons to respect and be proud of their military history. George S. Patton had been one of the main contributors to the outstanding development of the United States Army, therefore Buffalo and Company included the General to their Hall of Fame to honor his name and deeds.

Related posts:
Portrait of Harry S. Truman
Portrait of Winston Churchill
General Stonewall Jackson portrait
General Robert E. Lee


Portrait of Adam Smith

Friday, December 2, 2011

Portrait of Adam Smith belongs to the serious of famous men portraits created by me for Buffalo and Company.

Adam Smith, portrait
Adam Smith (social philosopher and a pioneer of political economy)

Have you ever wondered why the USA remains one of the most economically developed countries in the world? My strong belief is that the reason for a wonderful economical success of the United States was the wisdom of country’s first leaders who were greatly inspired by freedom and who had chosen and adapted economical theories which guaranteed freedom and equality of rights of each American citizen as much as it was possible within the bounds of the active legislation. Therefore it was not surprising that American intellectual leaders noticed and got interested in Adam Smith’s economic theory laid out in his “Wealth of Nations” in which he outlined the ideas of the so-called “laissez faire” philosophy. The phrase laissez faire is French and means "let do", i.e., when applied to Smith’s views, it is of paramount importance for the government not to seek to interfere in people’s economical activity unless it is an illegal business. It is now proved by the history that providing as much freedom for business as possible results in positive economical development of the country due to a sound competition and fair legislation.

I do not want to say that Adam Smith’s economic theories are perfect as there is nothing perfect in this world. However one cannot deny that the ideas of Adam Smith laid the foundation of today’s economical success of the United States of America. No wonder that Buffalo and Company chose Adam Smith as one of the greatest men who they and their customers would honor by wearing t-shirts featuring my portrait of this famous economist.


Custom Vector Illustrations for a Chiropractor

Saturday, November 12, 2011

I have recently created a series of custom vector illustrations for a chiropractor from Paris named Fabien. He commissioned me to make 8 illustrations in a peculiar style which looks like old school comics style advertisements. Fabien wanted to print out a big poster incorporating illustrations which would represent real life situations when people are suffering from pain caused by certain pathologies, harmful conditions or injuries which can be effectively treated by an experienced chiropractor like Fabien C-Storz. So if you urgently need help of a manual therapist while in Paris, make sure you contact Fabien for a quick relief or a comprehensive treatment (you can visit his website at www.myosteopathe.com). Meanwhile, let me show you the illustrations I created for him:

Custom Illustrations for a Poster at the Manual Therapist's Room

ankle sprain


Portrait of John Wayne

Sunday, October 30, 2011

John Wayne was not only an icon symbolizing American values and ideals he was also an actor whose characters in their majority exemplified the universal image of a rugged gentleman whose courage, appearance and actions set standards of masculinity. When Buffalo & Company organized a poll on their Facebook page in which their customers were asked to share their thoughts about what men should be honored for personifying classic values of manhood, it was not surprising that quite a few people voted for John Wayne. As a result I was commissioned to draw a portrait of John Wayne.

John Wayne, portrait
John Wayne aka Duke

There are some interesting facts about John Wayne which are especially curious to me as I was born in USSR. According to Wikipedia Joseph Stalin was a fan of John Wayne's movies, although Stalin had ordered to assassinate the actor as John Wayne was an ardent anti-communist with an incredible popularity in the USA. Stalin died before his order could be carried out and his successor personally rescinded the order. Another interesting fact is that there were not many Western movies made in the USA which penetrated the Iron Curtain and were shown in Soviet Union cinemas. However one of Wayne’s movies called “Stagecoach” ran in Soviet cinemas. In USSR the film was shown under the title “The Journey will be Dangerous”. It means that values and ideas depicted in John Wayne’s movies are rather universal and comprehensible not only by Americans.

I can only imagine how extremely popular John Wayne was (and still is) in the USA. But there is a fact which tells me a lot about the actor’s popularity. It is a rare thing when a public location is named after an actor. However there are several public places named after John Wayne in the United States among which I can mention John Wayne Airport (Orange County, California) and John Wayne Elementary School (Brooklyn, New York). There is also John Wayne Cancer Institute founded by actor’s son to find the cure for the disease which had taken the movie star away from millions of his fans. Thus the name of John Wayne lives on to keep the memory of the great actor in a special place in American people’s hearts for many generations to come.


Portrait of Hank Williams, Jr.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Hank Williams, Jr. portrait is the second artwork created for Buffalo & Company’s American Music Legend T-shirt Series.

Hank Williams Jr., portrait
Hank Williams, Jr. aka Bocephus

I have already told in my blog post dedicated to the portrait of Johnny Cash that country music is probably one of only a few music styles which absorbed the wisdom and philosophy of many generations of American men. Those men had actually built the country which became the home for the world’s most powerful nation for a relatively short period of time. I believe such a stunning success of the American nation was possible because, from its very cradle, the country was ruled by men who appreciated the basic values of manhood passed from generation to generation, including courage and intelligence. But rulers are not the only ones who build a nation as it is impossible to do it without average men and women whose hands and brains play a great role in the prosperity of every country. These average Joes and Janes preserved their experience, both positive and negative, in the form of music. Country music is probably the closest to the hearts of those US people who still honor courage, thirst for adventure and other real men’s values in times when such values are often forgotten.

Buffalo & Company has built their brand on honoring classic masculine values through men’s apparel they produce. No wonder they pay special attention to legendary country singers as Johnny Cash and Hank Williams Jr. whose appearance and art express the old spirit of a real man. Unfortunately, being a celebrity, Hank Williams Jr. is not easy to reach in order to get his permission to use his portrait on t-shirts. May be one day Mr. Williams will read this post and watch the video showing how his portrait was created and he might want to contact Buffalo & Company to discuss conditions on which he could allow selling t-shirts featuring his face. I believe he would be pleased to be honored by Buffalo & Company and their customers alongside with the great Johnny Cash, American presidents and other famous men. If one day Buffalo & Company gets his permission I’ll update this post with a picture of a Hank Williams, Jr. t-shirt.

Related posts:
Johnny Cash Portrait


Custom Pin-Up with 3 Cars

Monday, October 17, 2011

I knew that after I had made a few custom pin-up drawings featuring cars along with actual pin-up girls (see my previous blog posts dedicated to the rat rod pin-up, the Chevrolet pin-up and the pin-up portrait featuring a girl changing a tire on her car) there would be more clients with a particular interest in cars who would commission me to draw personalized pin-ups with automobile theme.

Soon after the posts about my car pin-ups had been published on my blog I was contacted by a guy named Brandon whose business was related to cars. The guy also had a beautiful wife whose beauty he admired even more than cars. He had an idea to commission an artist to create a cool artwork combining two most common passions of a man – a beautiful seductive woman and powerful cars. Well, pin-up is exactly the type of art which purpose is to stimulate men’s passion. So Brandon thought that a personalized pin-up portrait featuring his beloved wife and his favorite cars would be a great and unique gift for his spouse (and for himself, of course), especially if his wife shares his passion for auto & moto. The custom pin-up poster I created for Brandon features his wife with three vehicles – a 2004 lifted Ford Excursion, a 1981 Corvette and a 2011 Corvette Grand Sport.

pin-up with cars
Custom pin-up portrait featuring Ford and Corvette cars

Brandon also wanted another version of the pin-up incorporating the logo of his business (Auto Adrenaline).

pin-up girl with cars
Another version of the pin-up incorporating the Auto Adrenaline logo

I’ve also made a time-lapse video showing the work in progress. The video is set to some cool rock’n’roll tunes to reflect the character of this particular pin-up and to let readers of my blog feel the beat and the passion of the pin-up art in general.

As you can see in the video, I used art supplies from Pentel (brushes) to paint some basic parts of the pin-up. these tools are really handy and I try to expand the usage of Pentel brushes as much as possible.

Click here to see all my custom pin-ups on this blog
All my pin-up videos

Related posts:
Pin-up with a rat rod
Pin-up artwork with a car
1956 Chevrolet pin-up


Portrait of Harry S. Truman

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Another US president whose portrait I made for Buffalo & Company was Harry S. Truman.

Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman (33rd President of the United States)

As you might know from my previous posts, Buffalo & Company advocates classic values of manhood in men’s lifestyle, fashion and character. The company designs clothes with the heritage of men in mind opposing their brand to today’s trends in men’s fashion promoting the image of pretty-boys instead of rugged gentlemen strengthen with the life full of challenges. Buffalo & Company honors men whose courage and resolution, talents and charisma, intelligence and wisdom totally correspond to the classic image of a man. Harry S. Truman can definitely be among those men honored by Buffalo & Company. A president of a country, especially such a big and powerful country as the USA, is the person who faces an enormous number of challenges in his daily life. I cannot even imagine how difficult and tough must be the life of a president whose country is in war as the destiny of the whole nation depends on his decisions. But even if he takes unpopular decisions, the President must be an extraordinary person to lead the nation to the victory and never loose the universal esteem years after.

Related posts:
Winston Churchill portrait
John F. Kennedy Portrait
Teddy Roosevelt portrait


Enhanced Influence of Poster Art Among All Age Groups

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

I continue publishing guest posts which topics, I believe, can be interesting for some of my existing clients as well as for future ones. This time I would like to publish an article dealing with porter art. This kind of art may be interesting for those who commission me to create custom pin-up portraits.

You will find a huge number of fans of poster art in your surroundings. Posters are mainly printed or painted that has either typography or graphic constituent. It is an easy and affordable way to get an access to art that inspires you. You can decorate any part of your home, apartment, office, boat house, hotels, restaurants, dorm rooms, café and many other placements with the help of posters. There is a huge collection of posters that include celebrity, movie stars, movie directors, music bands, concerts, educational, different types of sports and players, food, cooking, cartoons, maps and many more to choose from. Just decide what type of poster or a collection of posters you want and then go for it or them. You have to keep in mind all aspects of mounting or placing them and your placements to enhance and enforce the chemistry in-betweens. Pay special attention to frames because frames alleviate the beauty of art. Go for wider frame in case of large posters, if you want that particular piece to be the focal point of any place, and also manage to get proper lighting above or around the framed poster to catch an eye towards it.

vintage pin-up poster art
Vintage pin-up posters can be a great example of poster art

Original and antique posters are precious, quite praiseworthy and valuable, especially the ones before the period of 1950s. The prodigy of antique posters of art and images has full-fledged in the previous ten years. The original ones are usually available at the heritage auction arcades and galleries and are accessible auctions. Auction arcades are more reliable and a good way to acquire original posters because there are unlimited supply of reproduced and replica posters. The differences between the original and replica are obvious if noticed keenly. If you ever get the chance to touch the original one, you will find its surface a bit rough and dull while replica will have a smooth silky surface and shine. Search for your full consent about the reputation of the dealer, if you want to invest your fortune in antique poster, whether you are buying it online or in person. If he is dealing in general posters then maybe he is selling replica.

It is very important for the safety and maintenance of your posters. Bring it to a specialized conservator who will engage in precautionary measures to decelerate the unavoidable decaying process. Prevent them from heat and water because they will accelerate the deterioration process.


Andrew Jackson Portrait

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

My next portrait created for Buffalo & Company and their Heritage t-shirt series features Andrew Jackson, the 7th president of the United States.

Andrew Jackson portrait
Andrew Jackson, aka Old Hickory

Andrew Jackson t-shirt
Andrew Jackson t-shirt by Buffalo and Company

Well, Andrew Jackson is far from being the most favorite president for the Americans as he is widely criticized for his support of slavery and the Indian removal policy. However, I believe, nobody can deny Andrew Jackson’s big role in laying an important brick in the foundation of today’s American democracy and one of the most effective political systems. Just read the Wikipedia article on Andrew Jackson to get convinced that some of reforms started by the 7th president of the USA were of considerable importance and wisdom for today’s free and democratic society of the United States.

Related posts:
George Washington Portrait
Thomas Jefferson portrait


Roosevelt and His Rough Riders

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I’ve been recently involved in a number of projects for Buffalo and Company. I am going to show you the results of my work in this and a few next posts. Today I want to show a stylized image of Teddy Roosevelt and his Rough Riders based on the famous photograph of the 1st United States Volunteer Cavalry regiment, also known as the Rough Riders, made by photographer William Dinwiddie.

photograph of Roosevelt and his Rough Riders
The reference picture of Roosevelt's Rough Riders

The drawing was to be placed on pocket t-shirts produced by Buffalo & Company to honor brave men and express company’s concern over today’s extensive feminization of men’s fashion. Drawing all soldiers on the reference picture too thoroughly would be time consuming and expensive but I thought that using my signature drawing technique (cross-hatching) could result in a somewhat sketchy but rather cool looking image of Roosevelt and the Rough Riders. This stylized image, I believe, is perfect for a tee.

Roosevelt Rough Riders
Roosevelt and his Rough Riders (drawing by Igor Lukyanov)

And again I learned an interesting story from the United States history. It’s kinda cool how the Rough Riders regiment had been gathered. It had been formed of volunteers who were cowboys, American Indians, college athletes, ranchers, gold or mining prospectors, hunters, gamblers, former military men etc. Only the strongest and the most capable men had been selected to join the regiment. This story reminds me of Hollywood movies about selecting the most talented, capable and brave soldiers to accomplish the most impossible military missions.

Teddy Roosevelt Rough Riders t-shirt
Roosevelt's Rough Riders t-shirt by Buffalo and Company

I think that the image of Theodore Roosevelt and his Rough Riders is the perfect choice to use as a symbol of genuine masculinity reflected in character, deeds and fashion.


General Stonewall Jackson Portrait

Friday, September 2, 2011

I keep on working closely with Buffalo and Company to create custom portraits for their Heritage t-shirt series. It is fun to draw portraits of famous people and learn more about the history of the Unites States of America at the same time. One of the latest portraits drawn by me for Buffalo and Company was the portrait of an American Civil War general Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson.

Portrait of Stonewall Jackson

General Stonewall Jackson, portrait
Portrait of Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson

Stonewall Jackson is probably a very controversial personality in the eyes of many Americans as he was one of confederate commanders along with General Robert E. Lee whose portrait I have already drawn for Buffalo and Company. But what really amazes me about the United States is that there were enough wise people to organize the Lost Cause movement purposed to reconcile and unite societies of the American South and North. As a result Americans can freely honor soldiers and leaders of both belligerents today. And this is not what can be often seen in countries where civil wars occurred.

Stonewall Jackson T-Shirt

confederate general Stonewall Jackson t-shirt
Stonewall Jackson t-shirt by Buffalo and Company

Related posts:
My second portrait of General Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee and his horse


Cowgirl Pin-Up

Friday, August 12, 2011

Cowgirl pin-up is probably the most American custom pin-up I have created so far. This drawing had been commissioned by a woman named Sarah as a gift for her husband who was a military contractor in the Middle East.

cowgirl pin-up
Personalized cowgirl pin-up

If you look back to the history of pin-up art, you will notice that paintings of pin-up girls became extremely popular during World War 2 when they were source material for American nose art – a painting on the fuselage of a military aircraft. Paintings of beautiful pin-up girls reminded soldiers about their most important goal of getting back home safe and sound to meet again their wives or girlfriends. What else can be more stimulating and exciting for a young trooper than thinking about the beloved woman waiting for him somewhere far away? Pin-up nose art was a kind of a representation of woman’s grace and beauty so much missed by soldiers fighting overseas. This art can also be regarded as a symbol of peace and joy of life which, for men, is usually built upon comfort and delights only the woman can offer.

Thoughts about the history of pin-up helped me realize that my personalized pin-up drawings could be a perfect gift idea for wives and girlfriends wishing to surprise their men in the army and to get them something to keep their moral and spirits high in tough times of military service.

Sarah’s cowgirl pin-up gift was even wiser than that. Cowboy / cowgirl culture is one of well-known symbols of America. Therefore the pin-up not only evokes tender feelings in Sarah’s husband’s heart for his beautiful wife but also stimulates his patriotic ardor and love for his motherland. Furthermore Sarah and her husband, living in North Carolina, seem to be big fans of cowboys / cowgirls style of life. They even have a horse trailer which they promised to decorate with the pin-up by turning it into a vinyl sticker (and I am very much honored). So, by giving a custom cowgirl pin-up portrait of herself to her husband, Sarah made him appreciate even more her beauty, their country and the way of life they enjoy together. Isn’t it a wonderful gift?

Click here to see all my custom pin-ups on this blog
All my pin-up videos

Related posts:
Rat rod pin-up Military pin-up


Pentel Art Supplies in Action

Saturday, August 6, 2011

This is not for the first time that I write about art supplies from Pentel, however I will never stop commending this company for their products as long as I use their art supplies (especially brush pens) either as main or auxiliary tools almost for every my project. In fact, Pentel brushes allowed me to reach the higher level of drawing experience by providing me with more control over each line of my artwork. I have created a special video to demonstrate how I draw with Pentel art supplies. The video features color brushes from, an Aquash brush, a pocket brush pen and an outline marker from Pentel. The video would be especially useful for fellow artists and craftsmen to discover new possibilities Pentel art supplies can offer to make their work easier and more efficient with even more impressive results.

sunflower, drawing created with Pentel drawing tools

Related posts:
Pentel Pocket Brush Pen drawing videos
Wacom Inkling review


Let Banner Stands Do the Talking for You

I have a lot of people who commission me to create various kinds of artworks for both personal and business use. In most cases images created by me end up to be printed on paper or clothing, engraved on wood and plastic, stamped on leather, embroidered, tattooed etc. These seem to be very complicated procedures for an average customer of mine. I am sure a lot of people do not even know about some of the above-mentioned services and opportunities they offer. That is why I decided to make my blog a little bit more useful for my customers by accepting guest posts dealing with different types of services related to printing or other methods of turning digital images into palpable art. Today’s post is about banner stands.

It’s a cliché to say that a picture is worth a thousand words, but it’s a cliché for a reason, the reason being that it has more than a grain of truth to it. When it comes to attracting the attention of would be customers, or conveying the maximum amount of information to interested parties in a high impact, low cost, deeply flexible manner, than banner stands are the medium you’re looking for.

banner stands examples
Examples of banner stands

Banner stands take the form of full colour high quality prints on a massive variety of backgrounds and materials and in as wide a range of shapes, sizes and formats as there are ideas in your head. It could be that you want a 48 or 96 sheet poster, either front lit or back lit for preference, and wall mounted or free standing. Once you’ve made that decision you can opt for an image printed on a specialised material which precisely suits the needs of your situation. For example, you may wish to post a large image in a position where high winds will be a problem; high on the side of a building perhaps, or in a large open space. In a placing such as this, wind resistance is a key consideration, and an image printed on a flexible mesh will reduce this problem to the minimum, without compromising the integrity of the image, by allowing the wind to pass through the banner. Alternatively, it could be that the clarity and quality of the visual image is your over-riding concern. Perhaps you deal in fine arts, or fashionable designer products which need to be displayed to the best effect. For banner stands such as these the banners will be printed onto fabrics or textiles such as knitted polyester or canvas, materials which can capture the finest detail and richest colour whilst still allowing the image to be reproduced to a size which will create maximum impact.

So, whether you’re displaying at a trade fair, attempting to capture passing trade in a busy thoroughfare or setting up a permanent but flexible visual display within a retail space, banner stands will offer the perfect solution no matter what the product, business or circumstances. Make the choice between the sizes, shapes, materials, colours and formats which best suit your needs and then sit back and watch the image do the work of a thousand words.


Pin-Up with a 1956 Chevrolet Car

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Today I want to show you another custom pin-up portrait created by me. This time the drawing features a vintage 1956 Chevrolet car along with a pin-up girl.

Custom 1956 Chevrolet Pin-Up

Custom artwork featuring a pin-up girl and a 1956 Chevrolet car

As you might have noticed pin-up girls often go with hot rods or classic cars on photographs and drawings. I believe there are at least two reasons why pin-up girls and retro cars seem to be inseparable.

First, pin-up artists, while creating a product of pop art mostly targeting men, are prone to combine two most exiting objects of men’s dreams – a hot girl and a great car. No doubt, this detonating mixture drives men crazy as there is nothing else which can elevate man’s self-esteem higher than conquering a woman's heart and owing a cool-looking automobile. Having both a woman and a car makes men feel good and happy.

1950s Chevy
Women and cars have always been men's most passionate desires

Cars became a popular subject of pin-up artworks due to the fact that classic pin-up pictures are, in fact, products made in the USA and later popularized all over the world by means of the dream factory called Hollywood. I believe in 1950s more people could afford a car in the USA than anywhere in the world. An affordable car of decent quality and appealing design became a symbol of the strong economy of the United States. Mass production of automobiles and comparatively high purchasing power of Americans made it easier for even average US citizens to buy a car. And that is why cars were added to the list of any self-respecting man’s desires along with attractive women. This resulted in introducing cars into the art of pin-up which the main purpose is to stimulate men’s most basic desires.

Secondly, there is nothing as good as a classic car from 1950-s to help preserve the atmosphere of the golden age of pin-up. The woman’s beauty has being a subject of many kinds of arts throughout the human history. So drawing a pretty woman alone is not always enough. However there are a few ways to impart the “feeling of the epoch” to a drawing or a painting. These ways include imitating famous pin-up painters’ style and adding some clothing and objects easily attributed to the targeted period of history. The appearance of cars has been ever-changing just like fashion and many car models are associated with the years of their production. Therefore vintage cars like a 1956 Chevrolet can be perfect objects for modern pin-up artworks if a pin-up artist or his/her customer wishes to leave a mark of those years when pin-up art was at the top of its popularity.

Work Progress Video

I offer you to check out the video below if you think it might be interested to watch how I draw my custom pin-up portraits. I hope you will enjoy the video and its background music which creates the atmosphere of 50s. By the way, among other art supplies I used Pentel brush pens again to create this artwork.

Click here to see all my custom pin-ups on this blog
All my pin-up videos

Related posts:
Rat rod pin-up
Pin-up portrait featuring 3 cars
Custom pin-up artwork with a car
Portrait of a woman with a Chevrolet Bel Air


Johnny Cash Portrait

Monday, July 11, 2011

The portrait of Johnny Cash is the first artwork created for Buffalo & Company and their American Music Legend T-shirt Series. I’ve been working with Buffalo & Company for around a year creating artworks reflecting the essence of the company’s business and their mission of creating clothing for real men to oppose themselves to today’s men’s fashion which seems to have lost the idea of classic masculinity.

Portrait of Johnny Cash

Johnny Cash portrait, American music legend artwork

I love working with Buffalo & Company because they honor a lot of great men whose deeds have made history of the USA and, in a certain extent, influenced the history of the entire world. With Buffalo and Company I’ve been extending my knowledge about American presidents along with other brave, smart and wise men such as John Muir, Ernest Shackleton and others. Now it seems that I will learn more about some famous American singers and composers whose art and philosophy perfectly fits to the image of real men honoring and taking proud of their manhood.

Johnny Cash entered both the Country Music Hall of Fame and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In fact, rock and roll and country music have common roots stretching almost 300 years back to the times when men were fulfilling their main mission of exploring new lands, hunting, fighting and protecting their families on the daily basis. Those men were strengthened by constant danger and challenges they faced while confronting nature and foes. Their physical labor and the role of providers and protectors made those men accustomed to pain, blood, sweat and dirt. Such way of life was reflected both in songs and men’s fashion. Men’s clothing used to be as practical as possible. The clothing was robust, comfortable and purposed to withstand harsh conditions of travel, hunting, fighting and hard labor. Today, when there is hardly any unexplored spot on the Earth and a lot of people have to spend more time staying in cities than in the open country, therefore quite a number of men feel a natural need and even urge to escape from crowded urban areas and indulge themselves in the most ancient activities of the mankind – fishing, hunting, exploring unknown territories. I believe that every man has a kind of a call of the wild in his heard that makes him long for the thrill of adventures. This is exactly for such men that Buffalo and Company produces its clothing.

Country music has absorbed the energy of generations of men who lived and worked closer to nature and had to be strong and brave to be able to take the best of the ever-challenging wilderness. Johnny Cash is one of a few genius artists who not only played the strong men’s music but also developed his peculiar charisma and philosophy which made him worth being called the idol by many of his fans. And I am also proud to contribute to honoring this man by my portrait of Johnny Cash.

Related posts:
Portrait of Hank Williams, Jr.
Portrait of Steven Spielberg


Rat Rod Pin-Up (Custom Gift)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

A few months ago I created a custom pin-up portrait featuring a so-called rat rod. The pin-up was made for a woman named Leann from the USA. Wikipedia defines the rat rod car as
“a style of hot rod or custom car that, in most cases, imitates the early hot rods of the 40s, 50s, and 60s. Most rat rods appear "unfinished" with just the bare essentials to be driven.”
When I read the Wikipedia article about rat rots, a thought crossed my mind that a rat rod car can be a perfect symbol of my custom pin-up art representing the very essence of my drawings of this type.

Just as rat rods, my custom pin-up artworks are mostly imitations of old pin-up drawings by well-known pin-up artists. I do believe that even the most perfect imitations and even copies of classic art always lack the spirit of aging and the original authors’ charisma. Just as new wine is never as good as the aged beverage of the same brand, imitations of any classic artworks may look cool but are never as appreciated as the original art of old and popular masters.

Rat rod cars are often assembled from old car parts and frames. They are usually customized in accordance with owner’s desires. The purpose of building a rat rod is creating a low budget alternative of retro hot rods which has the main function of a hot rod car (the ability to race) while retaining a touch of the exciting vintage cars appearance. The same can be said about my custom pin-ups. I take the parts from classic drawings of pin-up girls (postures, clothes, accessories) for my personalized pin-up artworks then I customize images by imitating old pin-ups drawing with my clients’ portraits instead of the original girls’ faces and by adding and/or changing any other desired elements like clothing, hairstyles, props, objects etc. My customized pin-ups serve the same purpose as classic pin-up drawings published in vintage magazines, which is to represent a woman in an appealing and seductive way creating an artwork worth being “pinned up” on a wall to delight the eye of any viewer. My pin-up drawings, although being customized, still have that peculiar look and feel of good old classic pin-ups.

This particular drawing is especially interesting because along with the pin-up girl it features a full-size car. I used color pencils and brush pens from Pentel to make the drawing. For those who love watching an artist at work I recommend watching the drawing progress video below. The video can also be interesting for those who love rock'n'roll and rockabilly music as I have added some cool old tunes which are very likely to warm your heart and make you wanna dance.

Custom Pin-Up Featuring a Rat Rod (image + video)

rat rod pin-up, custom gift
Pin-up with a rat rod

Click here to see all my custom pin-ups on this blog
All my pin-up videos

Related posts:
1956 Chevrolet Pin-Up
Custom Pin-Up with a Car
Cowgirl Pin-Up
Pin-up with 3 cars


John F. Kennedy Portrait

Friday, June 3, 2011

The portrait of John F. Kennedy was another artwork created by me for Buffalo & Company’s Famous Men T-shirt series. John Kennedy is probably one of the most famous US presidents. However, outside the United States this president is mostly known because of being assassinated and all that mystery around his murder. Nevertheless people whose knowledge about John Fitzgerald Kennedy extends beyond his mysterious assassination consider the President Kennedy one of the greatest presidents of the United States even in spite of being the youngest one. JFK actually became a political idol for quite a lot of people even outside of the USA.

Portrait of John Fitzgerald Kennedy

John F. Kennedy portrait
John Fitzgerald Kennedy

John F. Kennedy t-shirt
John F. Kennedy t-shirt by Buffalo & Company

John F. Kennedy was one of the first presidents to face challenges of the Cold War with the Soviet Union. In this respect JFK’s activity is of special interest to me as I was born in the USSR. It’s great to be able to learn more about this president and listen to his speeches which had been unavailable for average Soviet people. Youtube and Wikipedia provide the access to such information today and I really enjoy the opportunity of getting to know John F. Kennedy’s heritage further. I love how passionate, patriotic and encouraging Kennedy’s speeches were. It seems that he truly believed in what he said and there was a kind of energy in his words that made people believe his promises too. His speeches inspire me greatly, most probably because of lack of politicians of such caliber in my country. That’s why when creating the drawing progress video I included a few famous quotes by President John F. Kennedy to the background music (soundtrack from the movie “JFK”). You can watch the video below.

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What I also understood while learning about John F. Kennedy was that rivalry with the USSR had actually had a very positive influence on the USA with respect to technological development, human rights protection and the freedom of speech in the United States. The rivalry between two super powers was like a competition between two businesses compelling to create better products and services to be ahead of the competitor. This competition resulted in the need to protect and cherish the national values Americans are so proud of today such as equal rights of any individual, patriotism and urge towards being the best in any sphere of life. Ideological opposition to the USSR as well as ardent desire of Americans to compete in technological sectors allowed the United States to create a society offering a better life standards and fair rewards for work and skills not only for Americans themselves but also for other people from all over the world willing to assist in further improvement of people’s lives and maintaining values of a democratic society.

Related posts:
Portrait of George W. Bush
Portrait of Ronald Reagan
Harry S. Truman portrait
Portrait of Theodore Roosevelt
Portrait of Thomas Jefferson
George Washington Portrait


Colored Pencil Portrait of a Sweet Couple

Saturday, May 28, 2011

I have recently created a colored pencil portrait which can serve as another demonstration of how I use color pencils to make custom artworks.

The portrait was commissioned by a man named Dominic living in the USA and whose girlfriend was in Ukraine (the country where I live too). Thousands of miles dividing this sweet couple prevented Dominic from spending as much time and giving as much attention to his Ukrainian girlfriend as he wished to. Therefore the guy decided to commission me to draw a big portrait of him and his lovely girlfriend in order to remind again about his tender feelings for her and how he was missing the joy of the moments when they were together while his visit to Ukraine. The original portrait was eventually mailed by me to the girl’s address in Ukraine. I’ve made the drawing progress video which background music, I believe, pretty much reflects the feelings of these young people longing for the time when they reunite to experience their sweet romance close to each other’s loving hearts.

colored pencil portrait


Family Portrait with a Dragon (Inspired by Fantasy Art)

Friday, May 6, 2011

I cannot call myself a big fan of fantasy art because I still have more traditional tastes and prefer more realistic art. However trying to be a versatile artist I take on different types of commissions ranging from children’s illustrations to imitation of engravings and portraits of famous people with rather academic look and feel. Fantasy art projects are rare in my schedule and they feel especially surrealistic in comparison with my other drawings but I do not reject opportunities to create such artworks providing that they evoke my interest. Thus, I have recently completed another fantasy art inspired commission which I consider to be by far the most unusual artwork created by me as the this family portrait features a dragon and a medieval castle along with quite extraordinary images of people.

The portrait was commissioned by an Italian guy named Dario who had already commissioned me to draw a portrait of his wife as an elf princess. It seems that Dario has a passion for fantasy art and all kinds of medieval fairy-tale themes. This time he wanted me to make an unusual portrait of his entire family – his wife, baby son and himself. Dario suggested not only quite a peculiar subject of the portrait but also an interesting mixture of media. On the portrait his wife was supposed to be drawn as a fairy with wings with a graphite pencil to make the portrait look soft while he wanted his face to be drawn in ink to give it hard manly lines. The little boy was to be drawn with color pencils to make his portrait brighter and, after all, color pencils are what little boys love to draw with too. What else makes this portrait my most unusual artwork is the drawing of a flying dragon giving a ride to the child and a Romanesque castle in the background.

Dario’s passion for art can be explained by the fact that he used to write about art for a newspaper as a critic. And this is amazing how the guy can see artworks with his trained eye. He wrote some comments on my initial sketch and I understood that he could interpret art even better that an artist. He managed to discover symbolism everywhere in the drawing and not only in objects like the flower in fairy’s hands but also in the composition and geometry of the artwork. Luckily, he was kind enough not to try finding drawbacks in my sketch.

I personally consider such kind of custom art to be an interesting gift for any person and especially for those who have everything and are hard to surprise. Well, who does not dream to be a king in a fairy-tale land owing a huge castle and having a beautiful fairy wife, a strong and brave baby with a pet dragon? A custom portrait is the easiest and most affordable way to touch a seemingly untouchable dream because drawing and painting is the most flexible art when it comes to visual realization of any dream and most incredible fantasies.

Family portrait featuring a flying dragon (image + video)

family portrait, dragon image, fantasy art
A happy fairy-tale family with a pet dragon

Related posts:
Drawing a family portrait


Custom Pin-Up for an Australian Woman

Friday, March 18, 2011

I have been recently commissioned to create a custom pin-up portrait for an Australian woman named Tara. She wanted me to draw her as a pin-up girl sitting on a vintage style couch or a chair wearing a sexy black corset and stockings. This pin-up poster was supposed to be a personalized, original gift for her husband.

When I first saw the photos Tara sent me to draw her pin-up from, I immediately told myself that she might be a fan of pin-up art because all – her face, make up , hairstyle and clothing – suggested that this women knew how to use her femininity to blow men’s minds in “pin-up style”. I can imagine how much her husband must appreciate her employing the image of an attractive pin-up girl (I am sure there are a lot of other things he loves her for). The thing is that the key factor of pin-up popularity among men is the fact that pin-up art was created by men for men. You can clearly see it when looking back to the pin-up art history. Most popular pin-up artists were men (just remember popular pin-up posers by Alberto Vargas, George Petty and Gil Elvgren). Undoubtedly, these artists, being men, understood right what normal men are attracted to in a woman. Their talent was not only in drawing pin-up posters technically correct and making realistic seductive pictures, but also in ability to depict an attractive and a bit naughty female without crossing the line into vulgarity and sometimes even bringing in a touch of a cute innocence which entirely conquers men’s hearts. Pin-up influenced a whole generation of men. Its popularity has never faded and will always remain at a decent level, at least as long as men love women (and we all know that their love for women will never end).

Pin-up art is also popular with women as the majority of my clients who commission me for custom pin-ups are women. Well, it’s explained by the fact that classic pin-up art is actually a manual of seduction with iconic images rooted in men’s brains and evoking males’ most private fantasies. And wise women are always aware of the importance of keeping their men attracted to them and maintaining the fire in their men’s hearts.

Now let’s return to the custom pin-up portrait created for Tara. Here is the pin-up I have created along with a work progress video:

Custom pin-up portrait for a woman from Australia

Australian pin-up girl
Pin-up for an Australian woman (this image was eventually changed a little)

Tara commissioned me not only for a personalized pin-up but she also wanted me to draw more detailed portrait for her which I also would like to show here.

Australian woman portrait
Tara also commissioned me to draw a portrait for her

I really hope that my personalized drawings will make a great gift for Tara’s husband and he will love the pin-up image and the portrait of her wife.

Click here to see all my custom pin-ups on this blog
All my pin-up videos

Related posts:
Pin-Up Art with a Car
Custom pin-up picture for Cindy


Portrait of George W. Bush

Saturday, March 12, 2011

I continue working for Buffalo and Company and I have been recently commissioned to draw another portrait for the heritage t-shirts series – the portrait of George W. Bush. This is the first portrait for the famous men series depicting a still living president. George Bush has recently left office and his successes and mistakes are still fresh in the American people’s memory. May be that’s why he is a rather controversial personality with a lot of people criticizing him for the Iraq War and other unpopular actions as well as a great number of Americans supporting him for his resoluteness and willingness to protect his country by all means. I am not a U.S. resident and that is why I consider myself far from being competent enough to discuss failures and successes of the President of the United States of America. My job is drawing portraits, but not talking about politics. I can only suggest you reading of what Wikipedia tells about George Walker Bush if you want to learn more about the 43rd President of the United States. In any case, t-shits with the portrait of George Bush are apparently created for those who respect and support Bush. I hope those people will appreciate my George Bush portrait and will proudly wear t-shits with the portrait which are to be released by Buffalo and Company very soon.

George Bush Portrait

George W. Bush portrait
George Walker Bush

Related posts:
Portrait of Ronald Reagan
Portrait of Theodore Roosevelt
Portrait of Thomas Jefferson
George Washington Portrait


Cute Stuffed Animals

Saturday, March 5, 2011

I have recently been commissioned to create a few sketches based on a number of pictures of real-life animals to guide the design of cute stuffed animals toys. I was asked to illustrate baby animals from multiple photographs provided by the client. Those animals were a tiger cub, a bunny, a mouse and a marmot. The drawings were to involve my impression of the features most represented in the provided images to create a look that is cute and adorable, favoring on realism but not reproducing each detail of real-life animals. The client wanted the sketches to be suggestive of how a real, cute young animal would look, rather than a cartoon representation. The most important parts of the animals to be drawn were the upper torso, extremities and the head.

Good toys, especially those cute stuffed animals, have always evoked positive and tender emotions in me. I still remember plush toys I used to play in my early childhood. Today, being a father of three kids, I often visit toy shops to buy some cuddly toys for my children to play with. Today the choice of toys of any possible kind is much wider than when I was a kid. However, it’s always only a few soft toys that attract my attention more that dozens of others. And there is more than just a great design and cuteness that make me purchase this or that toy; there is something else – something special and individual which is hard to explain. I think those who create plush stuffed toys must have some kind of intuition to be able to make toys which would appeal both to children and to adults who often buy toys for their kids as a surprise gift, i.e. a child does not choose a toy himself/herself at a shop.

There are at least two reasons why I love this cute stuffed animal sketches project. Firstly, I am extremely happy that I had a chance to contribute with my drawing skills and artistic vision to the creation of cute stuffed toys which are very much likely to become favorite toys for hundreds or thousands of boys and girls to cultivate kindness and love for animals and all living beings in their little hearts. It is always a pleasure to create something good for kids as they are the most grateful people whose smiles are extremely inspiring and encouraging for further creations. Secondly, the project was very interesting while being relatively easy as it required only sketches of cute animals and conveying my artistic vision of young animals adapted for the stuffed toys look without having to elaborate complicated soft toys patterns and without showing toys design features.

Cute Stuffed Tiger Cub Toy

cute stuffed tiger
Sketch of a cute baby tiger to guide the design of a plush toy

Cute Stuffed Bunny Toy

cute stuffed bunny rabbit
This sketch of a cute rabbit will help people create plush toys for kids
Cute Stuffed Mouse Toy
cute stuffed mouse
Sketch of a mouse to be used to make a cute stuffed animal toy

Cute Stuffed Marmot Toy

cute animal stuffed toy - marmot aka groundhog
Sketch of a marmot also known as groundhog and woodchuck

I hope the guys who commissioned me know how to make stuffed toys which would appeal children and adults at the same time. Anyway, I am very happy to have participated in this cute stuffed animals project purposed to make kids happier.

Related posts:
Cute panda tattoo
Lion drawing

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