Friday, December 28, 2012

Masters of Contemporary Illustration:

Vladyslav Yerko

Vladyslav Yerko was born in 1962 in Kiev, Ukraine. He lived at his grandmother’s house in the village of Pirniv until he was seven years old and considers this to be the best time of his life. He spent his first year sleeping in a large suitcase, which rested on a chair under a lilac tree, and, likening his childhood to that of Mowgli, from Kipling’s Jungle Book, Yerko says he was raised, not by wolfs, but by “chickens, turkeys and the village cats”! His surroundings – the forest and river, insects and fish – all left a deep and lasting impression on the young boy and to this day, flora, fauna and the diversity of nature’s beauty serve as the wellspring of his inspiration.
Yerko graduated from the Kiev Polygraphic Academy before embarking on his highly successful career as an illustrator.








Friday, December 21, 2012

Tarzan Sketchbook

Dark Dragon Books, the publisher of the collection of my Tarzan stories, has decided to print a separate Tarzan sketchbook. This book will include all the sketches and drawings I ever did back in the eighties while working on the Tarzan comic. There will be some new drawings as well which I recently did in order to reconnect with my old jungle friend.
Here is a little preview to the upcoming sketchbook. Yes, this is supposed to be Jane. It looks like she spent more time in the gym, than hanging on the lianas and trying to keep up with her wild husband.

I wonder whether she managed to persuade Tarzan to buy her a little TV or PC, or at least a few glossy magazines, for she is apparently good informed about the latest trends…

Friday, December 14, 2012

Giants and girls 2

There was a giant once who was lonely. Most giants are, of course, or would be if they stopped to think about it...
They don’t think about this loneliness, however, because thinking isn’t something they go in for very much. Mostly they just get on with business of being giants, which takes up all their time and which is very hard work because it is laid down in the Rule Book fore Giants that, when they aren’t actually eating or sleeping, they have to stamp around the countryside bellowing at the tops of their voices and looking very  fierce. Looking fierce is hard work in itself as you’ll find out if you try it for half an hour. You keep on forgetting that you’re supposed to have a scowl on your face and you find yourself smiling at something. Than you have to start all over again…
Being kept so busy means that giants don’t have much time for thinking. When a giant does manage to get a few minutes to himself he generally feels so tired that he just drops off to sleep. He sits down first of all with his back against the nearest hill. Than he opens his huge mouth and gives a huge yawn. Then he spits out all the birds that have got sucked into his mouth while the yawn was going on. Then off he goes to dream-land.

But the giant who was lonely was different. He had long since lost his rule book and had never bothered to get it replaced. He didn’t go around stamping and roaring because he couldn’t see much point in it. It only made your feet sore and gave you a headache. Besides that, it frightened people away and he didn’t want to frighten people away. He wanted to be friendly.
What made him especially different from other giants though, was that he was always thinking, and what he was always thinking about was how much alone he was.

It was true that Angus (his name was, by the way, Angus Macaskill) did have one or two friends among the ordinary-sized folk. There was Morag Matheson, for instance, the shoemaker’s daughter…
She doesn’t look like a shoemaker’s daughter to me, does she!

However, if you like to read funny, charming and intelligently written fairytales, read The Lonely Giant by Alasdair MacLean.  
Just don’t pretend that you have outgrown the good bedtime stories! How can you be a great illustrator if the child within has left you. Think of, for instance,  the Hobbit novel, which Tolkien began as a simple bedtime story for his children. At the moment the whole world is talking about the Hobbit movie. More importantly  there would be no The Lord of the Rings without Hobbit!  Great things have often small, and sometimes silly, beginnings :)

I wish you a happy day with a good, healthy dose of silliness and laughter !

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Art of Petar Meseldzija

I am very happy to announce that Dark Dragon Books has decided to publish a book of my art, titled The Art of Petar Meseldzija. This book  will include a selection of paintings and drawings  from the past 25 years,  with the emphasis on the fantasy  themed  works. The book will have about  140 pages, and the text will be in English.
I will be collaborating with Dragan Bibin on this project.  Apart from being a brilliant illustrator, Dragan is also an accomplished designer who generously agreed to help me with the lay-out of the book. 

I have been trying for some time to find a publisher for this book, but without success. Most of the publishers I approached admired the art, but at the same time they thought that it would be financially too risky for them to invest in a book of an artist whose profile is not yet “high enough in the US”, to quote from a recent reply I got from a publisher. In other words, they think that, in spite of the quality of my work, my name still does not resonate enough with profit and prestige.
However, thanks to Amin Gemei, the founder and the publisher of Dark Dragon Books, his vision, bravery (willingness to take the risk) and his trust in my art, I will be finally able to present you with this art book.