Monday, July 27, 2009

Testing the System


Saturday, July 18, 2009

Quality! Quantity! And for Free please!

I've been pretty held up this month, unfortunately its more because I've been losing jobs then finishing them. Freelance is hard and for this entry I'd like to share two of my freelance stories that took a wrong turn. Maybe someone will read it and learn from my experiences, or maybe it'll be a good laugh or two. Whatever the case, I hope those doing freelance can see this and take something away from it.

For the time being we shall refer to the person(s) dealt with each project as Client "X".

Project :Waterboy

This was one of the most difficult projects I've dealt with because of a few problems, Communication and not being able to properly identify what is wanted. I first dealt with Client "X" on a earlier project helping to identify the look for the characters for a project they were going to pitch to a company for Educational Products. My first rough drafts are as follows:

Client "X" originally was ok with these sketches and had asked me to create a final character sheet for each. (What was chosen on the bottom page was the boy to the top left and the water sprite to the bottom right). So I went ahead and designed and colored the character sheets for the three.

Client "X" was happy with the designs and was preparing to send payment. But when 3 weeks past and no payment was dropped into my inbox for Paypal, I started to get a bit worried. (That and there was a post about Client "X" on Deviantart about not paying previously hired artist..a long forum post...It was kinda scary to think it might happen to me. So through Paypal, becuase they let you do so, I sent Client "X" a bill for the work done. (There was also a illustration that I worked on too). Two days later I recieved a email from Client "X" and they were furious. When dealing with work I tend not to ever use "!" at all or even "GIANT TEXT" unless explaining a story, talking to a client that happens to be a friend and can understand humor withing exaggerated text. Otherwise its always seen as offensive to me. So I told him through email that there is no need to shout or be offensive. I'm willing to listen or hear out whatever your problems are. So he stated them...or it. "The waterboy (the small sprite made of water) doesn't look like water. He looks like fire! Make him look like water!" I sat for a few hours pondering this. My girlfriend later told me that I should round him out more. So I did. I edited the character sheet and the illustration to make him appear as this:

He was accepted and payment was sent. However this is not the end of this story. Months later I recieved a email from Client "X" again, stating that they got the project approved and are happy to offer me a chance to help out with the main artwork. I agreed because if the idea was aproved that ment that I didn't have to spend hours reworking things that I already did right? Wrong. After my approval email, Client "X" emailed me back and stated that the first thing needing to be done is Making the Waterboy "look more like water". I had to stop myself from throwing me out of my chair. It was back to the drawing boards for me and the little Waterboy. So, I ran water in my sink for a few minutes....while washing my face, (I'm no waster of water haha!) and dove back into the re-creation of this character. I came up with these:

Quite an improvement if you ask me...but thats just me. I sent these in to Client "X" and he picked out the one towards the bottom to finalize. So I brought it into Photoshop and added colors and a bit if edits and you have what you see here below:

I sent this in and crossed my fingers it would all be over. wasn't. I got a email back from Client "X". "It doesn't look like water". There was a explaination on how there should be more water drop added and more flowing and less of a defined shape, so back to Photoshop, some more edits later and I had this:

The previous one behind it to show what changes had been made. I sent it in and again sweezed my thumbs and crossed my fingers and sure enough, there was a new email from Client "X". The line that I hated to hear was placed with care in the top of the email. "I still doesn't look like water." This project has just elevated to the level of frustrating. I was told that water should be more clear and less blue looking. I understood what he ment, but when I wrote him and asked should I just morph a actual photo of water for use, he said no and to just edit my character as it is. He also didn't like the faces and told me to change that as well.

These concepts were created. And I though it would be the end of it all. Its been 2 or 3 motths in time from the oringinal sketches and I prayed this would end it...It didn't. Besides the battle to protect work being stolen from me, Client "X" again felt that this "didn't look like water." (Normally with all clients I never realease work without a watermark unless it has been paid for. This client had threatened not to pay unless I take the watermarks off. Long story for another day). At this point I was very upset working with this client and sought a end to this. So I sent him a link to SKYPE and told him that after he downloads, installs and creates a account, to send me a IM/call and over webcam we will create this character right then and there, even if it takes the whole day. He accepted and the next day, I recieved a Skype call from Client "X". With my webcamera on, I awaited him with a sheet of paper in front of me and the camera pointed directly at it. We spent 2 hours discussing how the character needs to look, what he wants, what he likes, what he doesn't like.

After designing and adding color in Photoshop, this is what I came up with. Client "X" liked it, except that "it still doesn't look like water." He asked to have a BG with it so it'll look more like its from a water sorce. So, I adjusted colors....

The top one was accepted. And the project was finally finsihed...for me. After all that Client "X" decided to go with another artist. So...after all this work I recieved...nothing.

Project: Game Images

This project was a bit more current. BG images for a game. I always like to dip my hands into things I'm not totally experienced with. But I wanna be the best artist I can so I give it my best. Client "X" asked for some sample BG's created to see what I would created. Based from his rough ideas and from images online I created these sketches:

Client "X" liked the sketches and asked that I finish with them. So, I brought them into photoshop and re-inked, added color and presented him with these two images:

I recieved a email the next day from Client "X". He stated he was sorry because " he could not accept these BG because he needs quality images and nothing else." I was a bit taken back, because he looked at my gallery of work, and he knew what kind work I would produce for him. So I wrote him back asking to define what "quality" was to him. He did, and he told me to refer back to his rough ideas. The word "Quality" as defined in the dictionary is:

1. an essential or distinctive characteristic, property, or attribute: the chemical qualities of alcohol.
2. character or nature, as belonging to or distinguishing a thing: the quality of a sound.
3. character with respect to fineness, or grade of excellence: food of poor quality; silks of fine quality.
4. high grade; superiority; excellence: wood grain of quality.
5. a personality or character trait: kindness is one of her many good qualities.
6. native excellence or superiority.
7. an accomplishment or attainment.
8. good or high social position: a man of quality.
9. the superiority or distinction associated with high social position.
10. Acoustics. the texture of a tone, dependent on its overtone content, that distinguishes it from others of the same pitch and loudness.
11. Phonetics. the tonal color, or timbre, that characterizes a particular vowel sound.
12. Logic. the character of a proposition as affirmative or negative.
13. Thermodynamics. the proportion or percentage of vapor in a mixture of liquid and vapor, as wet steam.
14. social status or position.
15. a person of high social position: He's quality, that one is.
16. of or having superior quality: quality paper.
17. producing or providing products or services of high quality or merit: a quality publisher.
18. of or occupying high social status: a quality family.
19. marked by a concentrated expenditure of involvement, concern, or commitment: Counselors are urging that working parents try to spend more quality time with their children.

The word "Realistic" as defined in the dictionary is:

1. interested in, concerned with, or based on what is real or practical: a realistic estimate of costs; a realistic planner.
2. pertaining to, characterized by, or given to the representation in literature or art of things as they really are: a realistic novel.
3. resembling or simulating real life: a duck hunter skilled at making realistic decoys.
4. Philosophy. of or pertaining to realists or realism.

(Both are taken from

Client "X" stated QUALITY and wanted REALISM. Now, I'm not the best at realistic illustration, but because whenever there is a first disagreement between me and a client, I'll fix it without holding it against them. (I.E. extra payment for them forgetting to tell me something essental towards the creation of this project, also meaning something they just forgot which then makes more time for me to go back and fix it) So, I went into the 'shop, and spent a good day on remaking the BG. I came up with this.

Client "X" responded later the next day as not being too happy with it. Again telling me that it needs to be high quallity, and wanting some things changed because it doesn't look right. So I did.

Client "X" still wasn't happy. Certain things doesn't look right, and its just not high quality. So, at this point, I take the same approach with the previous client, and ask him to download Skype if he doesnt already have it and IM me when he is active online.

So I believe it was a few day after that email that I got a IM from him. I didn't have a microphone currently because someone was using it, and so everything was recorded via IM. As I stated before, I never use "!" or "BIG TEXT" because to me this shows shouting, and is very rude in dealing with clients. But the majority of this IM conversation, Client "X" in every line sent to me had "!" and use one or many "BIG TEXT". At one point, I had asked him not to use those because I find it offencive and is totally unnessesary for this converstation because I'm trying to hear him out. However it continued, all up untill the point where he told me that the work that I've sent him aren't quality enough for him. This offended me as a artist because I worked my butt off to draw everything sent to him, and I told him so. The "online yelling" (I guess thats the best way to sum it up) continued and after a while he told me that he had 5 other artist waiting to jump in on this project. I felt it was then necessary to end this project with him, because he obviously will never feel like anything I give him is quallity work, and with that, I ended the contract with Client "X" and asked him to please find a new artist because we would not see eye to eye, ever after talking about it online together. So, another project for nothing, yet I jump back onto the PC and look for more offers out in the world. Just my luck, another day in the world of Freelancing.

Don't sell yourself short. Someone out there can apprechiate your work for you.


Christopher R. Taylor - Illustration and Comics


Web Galleries: Portfolio Site

Deviantart Gallery

SKETCHFro! Blog and Illustrations


The Art Institute of Philadelphia/ The Art Institute of Phoenix July 2002 - September 2005

Major: Media Arts & Animation Degree: Bachelor of Arts for Media Arts & Animation

Graduated with Honors

Professional Qualifications:

Computer Skills: Flash (Good), Photoshop (Very Good), Premiere (Good), After Effects (Good), 3D Studio Max (Good), Maya (Good), Microsoft Office (Good)

Customer Service Skills: Good audible voice along with clear and proper grammar pronunciation, friendly, inviting, able to handle various situations as well as stressful encounters with customers.

Freelance Project History:



Pierre-Yves Lapointe Brisson- Pixel Characters for Browser Game

Description: Created villain and hero characters for a browser game. Designed characters on paper, then re-created pixel characters in Photoshop. Pixel sheets were created there and then animated by using FLASH.

Steven First- Texture Edits for Model

Description: Client had created textures for models that needed fixing. Readjusted texture and designs to fit the models. Editing was done in Photoshop.

Windmill Games- Sven- Concept Art for Online MMORPG

Description: Designed characters, starting clothing, Mafia clothing, villains and main city for studios use to develop 3D models of the concepts. Sketched characters, penciled, inked and then colored in photoshop.


Gameforge Studios GmbH- Internet Advertisement Banners

Position: Designer

Description: Created a set of 7 web banners for one of the studio’s popular game series using stock imagery and FLASH to help arrange and design.


Illustration and Design:


DORMWORLD – Storyboards for short animation

Description: Created 8 page, 4 panel storyboards for use for a short animation. Drew pages and then scanned into Photoshop for final edits and text matching.


Mark Krasovicki- Russian Training Manual Comic

Description: Created a 55 page Comic detailing the tasks of a Waiter/Waitress at the Temple Bar in Russia. Drew comic with pencil, then scanned into Photoshop for inking and editing. Added Russian text and word bubbles afterwards.

James Kershaw – 2 Mascot Designs

Description: Designed and Created 2 mascots based off of clients descriptions. Drawn, edited and colored in Photoshop.

Ron Brouwers – Professional Gaming Logo

Description: Created 2 logos for a professional gaming group for RTS games. Designed logo on paper, then scanned final work into Photoshop for coloring and editing. Lettering was applied through Illustrator and edits in Photoshop.

Pierre-Yves Lapointe Brisson – End Smoking Mascot

Description: Created a personal mascot for a quit smoking campaign. Designed, illustrated and colored in Photoshop.

Channel M- Princess Lucinda Short Comic

Description: Created short 10 page black and white comic for use by Channel M for their ongoing Heroine, Princess Lucinda. Created rough sketches and full illustrated pages digitally through Photoshop.

Antoine Dillard - Website - Hardcore Animation

Description: Redesigned and coded website using Flash. Designed, illustrated and coded complete layout for website. Can be seen at

Patrick Sessoms - 8 Paged Pitch Package with Cover

Description: Created a 8 page comic with cover for a pitch package. Drew pages with pencil, inks added and then scanned pages into Photoshop for retouching and adding letters and bubbles.

Kristopher Waddell - 5 Paged Pitch Package

Description: Added colors and set mood to illustrators inked paged for a 5 paged pitch comic. Coloring was done in Photoshop.

James Ives - Wedding Illustration

Description: Created Illustration based upon the Client and his wife for use on their wedding invitations. Drawing was created from photo reference, then brought into Photoshop to finish line-work, and color.

Alex - Console Dealer- Mascot Design

Description: Client wanted Mascots to help advertise their website for games. Designed sketches from descriptions, then made final line-art and colors in Photoshop.

Pinup Illustrations- Sexy Nuns

Description: Designed 2 illustrations for use in a collection of "Sexy Nun" drawings and illustrations to be sold. Sketched, then digitally inked and grayscale colored in Photoshop.

Curtis Lawson - History of Comics - Day of Comics Museum comic

Description: Created 2 pages in my style for used in a collected anthology comic of various artist about the history of comic books.

COZMIC- Tattoo design

Description: Design a memorable tattoo design from popular game Character Mario for the client. Sketches made, then pencil work and inked before brought into photoshop for color.

Marc Dahlem- Cartoon Book Project- Zeusinger

Description: Created illustrations to go along with a Germany Humor book to be pitched to publishers. Designed characters, sketched, penciled and inked illustrations before brought into Photoshop for final edits.

Celtic Minstrel- Web-comic- Trillium School of the Art

Description: Weekly web-comic for Created characters from clients description and sketch and pencil pages for the web-comic weekly. Drawn then colors pages. Edits made in Photoshop.

Anthro-Furry Character- Action Illustration B&W

Description: Designed the clients character for use in story/website. Sketched, penciled and then greyscale colored in Photoshop.

Zach - Black and White Character Illustration- Collection Website

Description: Commissioned to draw clients character in my own style for presentation on a collection website gallery. Sketched, penciled and inked the illustration before final edits were created in Photoshop.


Tone Chambers- Dr. Dre Illustration for Inspired Music CD

Description: Illustrated a cover for the design of Music inspired by the music artist Dr. Dre. Illustration was drawn, and then imported to Photoshop for color.

Yann Lülfz – Logo for local Member Group

Description: Design and created logo for use of a Members group. Logo will be used for stickers, advertisements and other assorted material for use in the group. Designed fully in Photoshop.

Will Beatman- Flash Animation for Website/ Spinning Record on Projector

Description: Created a short, repeating flash animation for use on a new website called “VIBE & SYNC”. The projector and spinning reel were to match the logo for the site in colors. Transferred logo into Flash and designed 2 projectors for the client to choose from. Once one was chosen, I animated the spinning film reel and movie reel onto it and added the logo of the site to the record.

Alessandra Davola- Fairy Tale Illustration

Description: Created an illustration based on a description for personal collection.

Drew the rough draft, then penciled the image for scanning and colored on the computer.

Cory de la Guardia- Zuda Comics Contest/Pitch Entry- Minimum Wage

Position: Pencilist/ Inker/ Colorist & Lettering

Description: Created an 8 Screen Pitch entry to Zuda Comics for Cory de la Guardia’s Minimum Wage. Designed characters from reference photos, rough pages, pencils and inks, then scanned into PC for Color and Lettering layout.

Greg Wilkinson- Mascot for Website

Position: Mascot Designer-Graphic Design

Description: Designed a Mascot for used on music web space from a design the client had originally created. Mascot was drawn, colored and optimized for use on the web.

Todd Guilmette- CD Album Booklet Artwork

Position: Graphic Designer for Album Book

Description: Designed Music CD album artwork for the client’s second music cd. Booklet included Visible Cover and back cover containing the client’s personal character. Style Matched main character into a created BG from description, inked then scanned into PC for color editing. Client ended up not using in the final product, however services were paid for.

White Eye Studio-Lawrence White- Colorist for Comics

Position: Flatter and Colorist

Description: Flatted and added color detail to comics being published by the Indie Comic label White Eye Studio. Preview of Comic can be seen here

Cotton Snourth- Maglenda’s Errand Girls-Manga Comic Pitch

Position: Pencilist/Inker/ Color Grayscale & Lettering

Description: Created a 6 page pitch comic for Louis Badalament’s Maglenda’s Errand Girls. Created Character Designs, layout pages, penciled and inked pages, then scanned into the PC

Mark Krasovickis- Sample Colored Comic for Website

Position: Pencilist/Inker/ Color & Lettering

Description: Created a 5 page sample comic in color with cover for use for a freelancing Comic artist web space. Comic will be seen as an example of what the website is set out to do, which can be seen here .

Sebastian Blasiak- Kidslab- Character Designs and Illustration

Position: Character Designer- Illustrator

Description: Created and Designed Characters for use in an Educational Project about water aimed for Children aged 7-9. Characters were then set in a illustration that would be used for the final presentation of the project.

Broken Souls Press-Short Story Comic- Donald Black

Position: Pencilist/Inker/Toner/Layout & Lettering

Description: Based of a story from a writer under BSP label, Curtis Lawson gave me the script to fully illustrate 10 comic pages to be used in an Anthology devoted to Horror stories as well as a magazine for horror comics.

Brian McKee- Book Cover

Position: Illustrator/ Cover Design

Description: Designed cover for book of short stories entitled “At the Gates of Heaven and other Short Stories” and for “Krishna in the Park- Selections from the diary of Carol Sheaves”. Books can be seen here:

Christopher Rama Rao- Web-comic

Position: Concept Artist/ Pencils/ Inker/ Colorist

Description: Work on comic panels for online comic. Design Characters and backgrounds while applying them to script that was provided. A panel every week.


Rob Giorgio- 360ep, Inc

Position: Illustrator

Description: Worked on two projects within the company and designed characters for use on t-shirts and websites.

Antoine Dillard- Hardcore (Website)

Position: Web Designer

Description: Designed and created interactive website for display at Hardcore Website designed and created in Flash.

Mark Tioxon- Getting Girls the Anime Way (Book and website)

Position: Concept Artist/ Lead Artist

Description: Designed and created the cover image for the book in use of sales. Also will be used as graphics for the website.

Mangamix Studios- Team MAXIMUM

Position: Illustrator

Description: Redesign characters for use in a poster to advertise for their comic. Designed poster for production and distribution for promotion purposes.

Arizona Independent Animation Project

Position: Concept Artist/Lead Artist

Description: Designed characters within one of the studio’s main animation projects. Also designed promotions and album covers for distribution at Conventions.


Sean Allan: Music DJ

Position: Album cover designer

Description: Designed an album cover for his next music collection album.

Willow Cottage Studios

Position: Lead Artist

Description: Character Design for lead character in production. In process of working on Storyboards for script.

Project: Bladeslinger

Description: 8 Paged pitch comic for Ken Faggio. Created Character Design, penciled and inked pages, toned and texted pages.


Position: Character Artist

Description: Have drawn various characters for use on web space on


Glen L. Down Elementary School Festival

Position: Caricature Artist

Description: As the day progressed, I was hired to draw paying customer’s

portraits in my style of art.


2 publication pieces in DOT, DOT, DOT magazine 2001-2002

Best of Show: Phoenix Anime Convention

Awarded for digital Artwork: A man and his Gun

Books and Publications:

Künstler und andere Nervensägen : Written by Dr. Michael Dahlem

Link to page:

Final Hour : Various Artist and Writers

Link to page:

Mysterious Visions: Volume 3: The Essex- Story by: Curtis Lawson, Illustrations by: Christopher Taylor

-Link to page:

Manga/comic: NEO|ARK Volume one

Link to page:

Endless Journeys: Book of published photographers work published.

My work: “The Falconer” ISBN: 0-7951-5247-7