Category Archives: Things that Inspire

Dana Gould plays Helium Comedy in Portland (and I made a poster for it!)

I recently had the very good fortune to do some work for one of the smartest comedians working right now, Dana Gould. He has a new stand up show that he has been performing at clubs all around the country. On March 24 through 26, he will be bringing it to the Helium Comedy club in Portland, OR. To promote this series of stand up performances, Dana has commissioned several artists to create a unique poster for each venue on the schedule. On this occasion, it was my turn.

For those that don’t know Dana, in addition to being a top shelf humorist he is also know for being a tremendous geek. He has a tremendous love for all things science fiction and horror with special places in his heart reserved for the works of Ed Wood, and the “Planet of the Apes” film series. This is obviously something he and I have in common. We first met many years ago, back during my Makeup Effects days, when he came to K.N.B. EFX Group looking for like-minded folks to help bring his MTV puppet show “Super Adventure Team” to life. We bonded over Apes and Monsters and have been friends ever since. Over the years, Dana has asked me to create various pieces of personal art for him. The jobs are always fun and challenging. This time was no different.

The brief for this assignment was simple; create a parody of the cover art to the legendary EC comics “Tales From The Crypt” Issue Number 24. This is the original piece.

Thanks to mycomicshop.com for the image

Thanks to mycomicshop.com for the image

Like the other posters in the series, simplicity was the key. Even though we batted around various ideas, we decided to just stick with the close approximation of the original Feldstein art. After working on the composition, and the DG likeness, this is MY version.

Dana Gould Helium Comedy Poster Art by Mark Tavares

“Dana Gould Helium Comedy Poster” 11 x 17. Brush and Ink on Bristol Board with Digital Coloring and Text. © Mark Tavares

I am actually quite proud of this piece. In the past when I have done this kind of comic book style ink and coloring, I would get carried away with the inking details which I would then muddy up with too much digital color. This time I worked hard to restrain those tendencies and I believe it paid off.

As with his other shows, I believe Dana will be having some prints made which he will sign and sell at the show this weekend. I will also put them up on my print store sometime next week should anyone be interested. I’ll just make sure it’s cool with Dana first though.

If you happen to be in the Portland area this weekend, go check out his show! Tell him I sent you! http://portland.heliumcomedy.com/events/9118

Thanks for looking!

 

Also posted in Caricature, Celebrity, General Musings Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy Birthday David Lynch

I am a little late on posting this here, I know, but Happy Birthday David Lynch! This is a little something I painted as a sort of birthday card to the famed director and monument to Eccentricity.

Happy Birthday David Lynch painting by Mark Tavares

“Happy Birthday David Lynch” Acrylic on Bristol Board. 14 x 17. © Mark Tavares

Given that a new “Twin Peaks” is on it’s way to screens sometime in the next..however many years, I thought this would be an appropriate background.

Thanks for looking!

Also posted in Art for Sale, Caricature, Celebrity, General Musings, New Art, Television, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy New Year 2016!

Welcome to the brand new year everyone! My family and I had a wonderful Holiday. I hope you all did as well.

One of the great things that happens around this time of year is the “SyFy” channel’s three day marathon of “Twilight Zone” episodes. Just having them on during the day as we went about our Holiday routine provided a wonderful soundtrack to our New Year’s weekend. Rod Serling’s creation while dated in some superficial aspects, continues to stand the test of time. The stories are as powerful today as they were when first broadcast.

Rod Serling himself has always been a fascinating character to me. His onscreen manner as the host of  “The Twilight Zone” with his trademark tight-lipped delivery and ever-present cigarette is the stuff of TV legend. I had made attempts in the past to capture his likeness in a sketch but I was never completely successful. Having binge watched all five seasons over the weekend, and then having seen a fellow artist’s rendering of the man, I was inspired to try to capture Mr. Serling’s likeness once more.

Oil Painting of Rod Serling by Mark Tavares

“Rod Serling” 16 x 20. Oil and Acrylic on Canvas Board. © Mark Tavares

Not a bad way to start the new year, if you ask me! As with my other works, this painting is for sale. Please contact me if interested. I will also be selling prints through my Fine Art America store.

I am looking forward to the artistic challenges this new year will bring, both with my personal work and the reinvigorating of my business, Humerus. Of course, commission work is always welcome! 🙂

Thanks for looking and have a Happy 2016!

-Mark

Also posted in Art for Sale, General Musings, Happy New Year, New Art, Paintings for Sale, Television, Twilight Zone Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Ode to Justified

This was something about which I had to keep my trap shut. Now, all can be revealed.

This season is the final one for the FX network show, “Justified”. This show has been a favorite of mine from the get-go. It has great characters, crackling dialogue, and like most of the original programming on FX, it pulls no punches. I highly suggest Netflix-ing it if you don’t already watch.
 
A few weeks back, I was approached by my friend, John Harrington, who is the Prop Master for the show. It is customary for cast and crew departments to exchange gifts at the end of a series. John wanted to do something unique. Knowing my fondness for caricature, he hired me to create this painting. John wanted something a little reminiscent of Jack Davis in style and humor, but not as kinetic. I sketched up a few ideas and we went with a portrait of the main characters hanging out in Johnny’s Bar.
 
Even though we decided to limit it to the main cast, I had to try and get some of the other terrific characters from the show into the painting as well. I included as many “shout outs” as possible in the background, not the least of which being author and creator of Raylan Givens, Elmore Leonard. ..and yes, just like on the show, everyone is packing heat! Prints were made and are being distributed to the cast and crew even as I type this post. I do hope they like them. It was a tremendous honor and pleasure to be able to give something back to one of my favorite shows on television!
"Ode to Justified" 18 x 24. Acrylic on Masonite. © Mark Tavares

“Ode to Justified” 18 x 24. Acrylic on Masonite. © Mark Tavares

 
The even better news is that once the cast and crew get theirs, I can offer prints for sale through my Fine Art America store. So, stay tuned!
Thanks for looking!
Also posted in Caricature, Paintings for Sale, Television, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy Birthday Rick Baker!

Award-winning Makeup Artist and Mentor to generations of Effects Artists, Rick Baker, celebrated his Birthday yesterday. I sketched this out as a Birthday “card” in honor of the event. Happy Birthday Rick Baker!

"Happy Birthday Rick Baker 2014" 10 x 8. Acrylic on Masonite. © Mark Tavares

“Happy Birthday Rick Baker 2014” 10 x 8. Acrylic on Masonite. © Mark Tavares

Also posted in General Musings, New Art, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , , , , , |

October Shadows 2014

Another October is upon us and that means it’s time to get my Halloween on! A big part of that is being able to participate once more in Taylor White’s fabulous “October Shadows 2014” Group Art Show at the Creature Features Gallery in Burbank. As in the past, the show celebrates the traditional iconography of Halloween. Artists had to incorporate Witches, Pumpkins, Bats, Cats, etc. into their works in order to be accepted into the show.

I wanted to tackle a Witch portrait, and there is no more iconic a witch than the infamous Elphaba Thropp, a.k.a. The Wicked Witch of the West from “The Wizard of Oz”. The character, immortalized on film by the equally iconic Margaret Hamilton, has been painted time and again. In trying for a fresh take, I was inspired by the self portraits of renowned artist, Frida Kahlo. One painting in particular shows the artist posed against a backdrop of tropical flora and surrounded by monkeys. The connection to the Wicked Witch and her Flying Monkeys was inescapable. I had my take.

I present to you, “Portrait of Wickedness”!

"Portrait of Wickedness"  24 x 30. Oil and Acrylic on Masonite. © Mark Tavares

“Portrait of Wickedness” 24 x 30. Oil and Acrylic on Masonite. © Mark Tavares

The show runs through Halloween. You can find information at www.creaturefeatures.com. In case you are interested, this painting is for sale. Contact me for details. Prints are available HERE!

Thanks for looking! Happy Almost-Halloween!!

-Mark

Also posted in Art for Sale, General Musings, Halloween, New Art, Paintings for Sale Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Big Daddy Roth revisited

This Labor Day weekend saw the opening of another art show at “Creature Features Gallery in downtown Burbank, CA. This show is called “MonsterFink” and it celebrates the grotesquely beautiful Monsters and Cars art created by the legendary Ed “Big Daddy” Roth and the slew of imitators to come after him. The walls were lined with paintings and sculptures all sporting day-glo paint jobs. The art may have been low brow but the quality was high! In addition to the visual delights, the band “Boss Fink” rocked the crowd while a slew of hot rods cruised Magnolia Ave thanks to the good folks at “Autobooks” next door.

Do check out the show if you can. There is a lot of fun stuff to take in! All the art is for sale. However, if you are operating on limited funds, you can also buy prints of the amazing work, including MINE! Speaking of which, here it is!

 

"Hybrid Fink" 18 x 24. Acrylic on Masonite. © Mark Tavares

“Hybrid Fink” 18 x 24. Acrylic on Masonite. © Mark Tavares

 

Thanks for looking!

-Mark

Also posted in New Art, Paintings for Sale, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , , , , |

H.R. Giger

Greetings once again!

Well, the “Godzilla:All Art Attack” group show has been a success. The opening brought in a huge crowd, and the event was chronicled on several important websites. Taylor and Eric should be very proud. I am very happy that I am included in such a fun event. Of course, that has made coming up with something better for the next show, “Planet of the Apes: The Evolution”, a much harder task. I have the “bones” for several decent ideas. The problem is that I can’t, as yet, quite figure out how to properly assemble those bones into a decent painting.

Just to give my mind a break, I thought I might work on something else for the moment. As you may have heard, noted Swiss Surrealist painter and sculptor, Hans Ruedi Giger, passed away last week at the age of 74. In case there is someone reading this who might NOT know, H.R. Giger is probably most famous for designing and helping to create the titular creature from the 1979 horror film “Alien”. Many considered his work to be genius. I am not sure about that. It was, however, intense, fascinating, and inspirational to generations of creature creators and nightmare designers.

I had thought about doing a tribute piece that involved his most well-known creation, but there are plenty of those on the Internet already. Instead, I chose to do what I always do and focus on the man himself. Giger himself was as intense and surreal in appearance as anything he created with his airbrush. A most interesting character indeed.

Mark Tavares's painting of H. R. Giger

11 x 15. Acrylic on Watercolor Paper. © Mark Tavares

 

Rest in Peace.

 

-Mark

Also posted in New Art, Paintings for Sale, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Stuart Freeborn (1914 – 2013)

The Make-up Industry lost a giant this week, with the passing of Stuart Freeborn.

Over a 60 year career, he created an amazing array of memorable characters. I won’t go into a breakdown of his career accomplishments here. There are many other sites that have already covered it much better than I could. What I will say is that while he worked on a huge variety of feature films, it was his contributions to the a little film series called “Star Wars”, in particular the creation of it’s most famous Jedi, that had the greatest impact on me. As I have stated before, “Star Wars” cemented my desire to work in Special Effects. It seemed like every magazine on the subject always had a picture of Stuart, or his wife or son, brushing out Chewbacca’s coat or doing touch ups on his mask.

Even though they may have been staged publicity shots, I always loved the way Stuart would always be shown in the lab, wearing a nice dress shirt and cravat under a beige Artist’s smock. My favorite of all those “in progress” shots shows Stuart working on a sculpture of Yoda’s head. What makes it special for me is that, in addition to his usual professional attire, he is also wearing a “Superman” watch. It’s a nice, whimsical touch.

20101031_yodac6_bg

In honor of his passing, I thought I might paint up my own take on that moment of film history.

Stuart Freeborn working on a sculpture of Yoda

Celebrating the life and career of British Make-up and Special Effects artist, Stuart Freeborn, who created the most recognized Jedi in all the Universe.

Rest in Peace, Mr. Freeborn. Thank you for all the inspiration.

-Mark T

Also posted in General Musings, Make-up Effects, Uncategorized

Things that Inspire! Part 2

Hello again!

As we enter the final stretch of 2012 (Can you believe it?), I thought I would point out a really nice thing that happened recently.

As I have been a practitioner of Special Make-up Effects, it should come as no surprise to anyone reading this that Rick Baker is one of my artistic idols. His work is at the top of a long list of folks who helped point me towards this most curious career path. Long considered one of the best make-up artists in the business, Mr. Baker has designed and created characters for some of the most memorable  genre films of the last three decades such as “Greystoke”, “Harry and the Hendersons”, “Gorillas in the Mist”, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller”, “The Nutty Professor” films, and of course, “An American Werewolf in London”. It was this last one which made the biggest impression on my young film-going psyche. Coincidentally, “Werewolf” was the film for which he received the very first official Academy Award for Best Make-up.

Since then, Rick Baker has received six more Academy Awards, as well as a slew of nominations and other awards. Well, now he can add another to the list. This past Friday, he was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Despite the rain, a large number of Hollywood producers, directors and actors turned out to honor the man and his body of work. There were also a large number of effects professionals in attendance, including Mr. Baker’s mentor, the legendary Dick Smith. Since I was working on his likeness for a potential future project anyway, I thought I would mark the occasion in my own manner.

I present “Rick’s Star”.

“Rick’s Star” 9×12. Casein on Canson Watercolor Paper.

 

Congratulations Rick!

-Mark

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