Entries in fiction (4)


Leurzer's Archive

A quick post to show my page from Leurzer's Archive 200 Best Illustrators Worldwide. This landed on my doorstep a couple of weeks ago, but I didn't have time to open it until now. Honoured to be a part of this - so many incredible talents and a great cover by Brian Stauffer.

I don't get to illustrate fiction very often. This image was for SubTerrain, and I illustrated the entire issue, from cover to cover. I posted about the project here. This piece won gold in the Western Canada Magazine Awards. Nice to have work out of the realm of my usual purview recognized.

On another note, my work was paired with Richard Borge in the spread. I am a huge fan of his work and he's a super nice guy! (I met him at ICON in Portland this summer).

The image was for a short story titled 'Detachment' - about a remote RCMP detachment, a stray dog, and the struggles of a young family, from the viewpoint of the oldest daughter. It was written by Lee Kvern.

Here's a full version of the image:




Winning Combination


Last week I had a surprise visit from Brian Kaufman, the publisher of SubTerrain Magazine and Anvil Press. Brian happened to be at Oeno Gallery and saw my work. Owner Carlyn Moulton sent him my way and we got together for a coffee on the back deck. It's always nice to have visitors from distant locations, Brian lives and works in Vancouver. Even better when it's someone who has handed me one of my all-time favourite projects.

Second surprise: on Friday night my work made the finalist list for the best illustration at the Western Canada Magazine Awards. (Actually two of the five choices for the award were pieces commissioned by SubTerrain). The illustration for Lee Kvern's short story Detachment won gold! 

Detachment is a beatifully written short story about a girl growing up in a remote RCMP police detachment. I was drawn in immediately and had vivid images come to mind, scribbling down thumbnails as I read through. I was given creative freedom on this project and it's rewarding to see my interpretation of the story recognized by the judges. Lee won gold for her writing as well. A double victory for the magazine.

You can read about the entire project, a cover-to-cover edition illustrated by yours truly. Work on this project has also been recognized by American Illustration and the Society of Illustrators NY.

Thanks Brian, Lee, and the Western Magazine Awards!


In the Show

I created this for SubTerrain magazine, artwork for a short story by Marni VanDyk titled 'The Red Mouths' . This piece will be hanging in the editorial show at the Society of Illustrators, NYC, which opens tomorrow night (Feb 1) and will be published in the SOI Annual #55. 

Excited to be a part of the show!


Strong Words for a Polite Nation

Creative freedom. I have worked on books, been handed manuscripts and have always made an effort to satisfy my creative abilities by initiating new projects. Back in 2008, I had the opportunity to illustrate an entire issue of In Character, the Grit issue. This past spring, I was contacted by publisher Brian Kauffman, who offered the chance to work on a cover-to-cover design of SubTerrain.

SubTerrain is a Canadian arts and literary review, offering short stories, poetry and art. Its tagline is 'Strong Words for a Polite Nation'. I haven't had the chance to work illustrate fiction and poetry very often. I reviewed the articles, scribbling down the images springing to mind. I wanted to create strong images to go with the words.

Working on this project was like an all-you-can-eat buffet, or a night at a gourmet restaurant. One tasty dish after another, each with a different flavour. Here are a few of the courses served up:

'Detachment' - a short story about a remote RCMP detachment, a stray dog, and the struggles of a young family, from the viewpoint of the oldest daughter.

'Beautiful Bratislava' relates the struggles of an aging poet, peddling his latest volume of collected works.


'Uncertainty Principle' - artwork to accompany a poem.

I was honoured to have my work regognized American Illustration jury. The following two pieces were chosen. Creative freedom and artistic affirmation. A great combination.

'The Red Mouths' - a coming-of-age story of an inner city girl, and the object of her affection.


'Passing' - finding a place in between high school and higher education, between two different countries and cultures.