Blog

Let’s Pull Together

I’ve been thinking a lot recently about what it means to pull together, as a community of creatives.

Read More »
 

A Bold New Style Inspired by 19th Century Chapbooks

I wanted to share some new work inspired by 19th century chapbooks in a slightly muted palette. Take a look and let me know what you think!

Read More »
 

He’s sensitive. He’s huge. And he’s a hero.

The Hugely Wugley Spider is my latest illustration project. Written by Emmy-award winning comedian Ethan Berlin and published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux Books for Young Readers, the book is slated for release in early 2018.

Read More »
 

A Muirandessi Randonneur

Muirandessi is frame builder Andrew Lu based in Eugene, Oregon. I worked with him and Keith Anderson to create a one-of-a-kind bike in the French randonneur style. Enjoy lots of photos!

Read More »
 

La Grenouille (The Frog): The Evolution of a Collaboration

La Grenouille or The Frog is a bike project that began in 2014. I wrote about the frame modification in a previous post. This post talks about a collaboration with Keith Anderson that involves graphics, decals, a unique head badge, and superb custom paint.

Read More »
 

A Room Full of Flies

I spent Saturday morning in a room full of flies. Baby flies. Toddler flies. Little girl and little boy flies. And even a few mom and dad flies. The largest fly was 6 feet four inches. I am grateful to Jeremy Garber, Rachael Waller, and Mark Savage at Powell’s City of Books here in my […]

Read More »
 

The Year of The Fly!

The release date for “Fly!” is March 24. Kirkus Reviews gave it a thumbs up.

Read More »
 

Meet Frankenagency’s Monster

Halloween is almost here and every art director, designer or small agency knows the horrors of last minute demands by sadistic and clueless clients. I had the pleasure (horror) to work with Steve Klinetobe, Creative Director at The Cartoon Agency, on this creepy project.

Read More »
 

2014 Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show Poster: Bike and Beer Festival

I collaborated with Kelley Dodd and Andy Newlands of Strawberry Cycles on this year’s poster for the Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show, the Handmade Bike & Beer Festival, sponsored by Hopworks Urban Brewery. Find your perfect pairing September 27-28. See you there!

Read More »
 

Fly! takes off . . .

It’s officially official! Alfred A. Knopf Books is publishing my debut work as a children’s picture book author and illustrator. Fly! is the title, and it will be released spring of 2015.

Read More »
 

Portraits of Champions

Alli and Laveau are champion black labs. Here’s the story of their portraits.

Read More »
 

REAL Character Development

Normally, when I develop characters for a commercial, they tend to be humorous illustration. This assignment, for Dell’s Alienware X51 Mini Gaming Desktop, was different. Real different. Real as in realism.

Read More »
 

StarMichael Bowman Cycles

Frame Builder and bike shop owner StarMichael Bowman is a rising star in North Portland. We collaborated on a pair of projects: Graphics for StarMichael Bowman Cycles, and modifications to transform an old, beat-up 1978 Trek TX770 into a traditional randonneur-style bicycle.

Read More »
 

The Best Way to “Shoot” Your Dog

This time of year, I get a lot questions about the best way to shoot your dog. Photographs, that is. Fall is when people commission dog portraits as special gifts for the holidays. I’ve gathered together a quick guide to make the process easy.

Read More »
 

Who Needs an Art Director When You Have a Veterinarian?

Initially, I thought this might be “just another logo job,” but it morphed into something very different.

Read More »
 

Evil Penguin Sighted in Oakland

“You that never done nothin’, but build to destroy. You play with my world like it’s your little toy.” – Bob Dylan, “Masters of War”

Read More »
 

Bobby Walthour IV and the Dixie Flyer Experience

Bobby Walthour IV will be in Portland July 12-14 for the Alpenrose Challenge. He will introduce his new line of bikes, the Dixie Flyer. I worked with Bobby to design the headtube badge.

Read More »
 

The Google Experience: Illustrations for a New Client

I had the opportunity to finally work with Google! It was fast-paced and intense. Here are some examples of the work I produced over a period of nine days.

Read More »
 

Process of Process: Who is Justice Jack?

Who is Justice Jack? He’s a real-life superhero! Well, really he’s just a guy in Spandex and a mask who rides around town on a dirt bike, hoping to find some crime to fight.

Read More »
 

Process of Process: The New Albion Cycles Badge

Recently, I had the privilege to work with Mary Sales, Jim Porter, and Stanley Pun of the Merry Sales Company, the Bay Area distributor that co-founded SOMA Fabrications. Jim contacted me to design the head badge for a new line of lugged bicycles. Merry Sales Company will distribute these bicycles under the brand New Albion Cycles. […]

Read More »
 

Process of Process: What is the plural of Elvis?

The plural of Elvis? Elvi — or in this case, Elvi impersonators. Follow the steps in the process to create the cover for Wendelin VanDaanen’s lastest Sammy Keyes mystery, Showdown in Sin City . . .

Read More »
 

IS THIS PROCESS PROGRESS????

I was recently approached to digitally update illustrations for two books I originally illustrated by hand with pen and and ink and watercolor in the early 90’s. I found myself struggling with how much of the new me was willing to be the old me.

Read More »
 

“Dammit! That still looks like a kangaroo!!”

The assignment: Create a not-too-cute, sort of realistic, edgy, hipsterish product spokesperson that happens to be an alpaca. SPECIAL BONUS for ASPIRING ILLUSTRATORS at the end of the post.

Read More »
 

The Process of Process: The Badge

For Joseph Ahearne, one of the Pacific Northwest’s finest bicycle frame builders, the Ahearne Cycles head tube badge is much more than a logo. The badge tells the story of the bike and its maker.

Read More »
 

Edwards’ Theory of Evolution: Why Hippos with Braces are Okay, but Sharks with Glasses Are Just Too Scary

Darwin’s Theory of Evolution proves the notion of survival of the fittest. What does Edwards’ Theory of Evolution of Illustrations for a Dental Clinic prove? Read on to learn the answer to this bewildering mystery.

Read More »
 

July 2011 Profile in BikePortland.org

This is a profile by BikePortland.org editor Jonathan Maus published on July 15, 2011 and reprinted with permission.

Read More »
 

Trouble at the Lake: First Volume in the Squwak Adventure Series

“Trouble at the Lake” is the first in the “Squwak Adventure Series” of child safety books produced by the Yell and Tell Foundation. This post talks about collaboration between me and the author, Yell and Tell founder Jean Davidson.

Read More »
 

Using illustration to help deliver an important message to kids.

For the past couple of years, I have been involved with a wonderful charity called Yell and Tell. It was developed by Jean Davidson, the granddaughter of Walter Davidson, one of the four founders and first president of Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Company. Rather than join the family business, Jean chose to dedicate her life to teaching […]

Read More »
 

The Process of Process: It’s a Bike AND a Book!

  There are two things I really like: illustrating kid’s books and restoring bicycles.  I’ve designed graphics for many custom bike frames. Here are a couple of examples of my original designs.   I’ve also illustrated stories about bugs riding bikes. This is a dummy for a book I presented at a children’s book conference […]

Read More »
 

The Process of Process: Generating 2 HP

  A good friend forwarded this announcement from the Froelick Gallery here in Portland: EQUINE Juried Group Exhibit: Equine theme June 01 – July 16, 2011 “Across cultural boundaries and throughout history, few animals have carried as much symbolic weight as the horse. They can stand for unrestrained freedom and independence, loyalty, luxury and nobility, […]

Read More »
 

Jake

Jake is a Yellow Lab who lives in Portland, Oregon. He’s almost twelve, but has the personality of a puppy. When I was scheduling a date to take photos to use as reference to paint his portrait, Vonnie, his owner, wrote, “Can we meet at a park? That’s usually where he has that big, ear-to-ear […]

Read More »
 

The Process of Process: The New Kid

I just completed a very fun job for Random House. They are great people to work with.  The book was written by Newbery Honor Winner Mavis Jukes and is titled The New Kid. This post is a written and visual record of the steps involved to develop illustrations for the front and back covers of […]

Read More »
 

The Process of Process: Sammy Keyes Book Cover for Random House

This post describes the process behind creating a book cover for “The Wedding Crasher”, the latest in the Sammy Keyes series by Wendelin Van Draanen published by Random House Children’s Books.

Read More »
 

It Takes a Dialogue to Paint a Successful Dog Portrait

This week, almost exactly a year after I finished the portrait of Brinks, I received sad news from Barbara and Jacque. Brinks maintained her dignity throughout her struggle with a debilitating, progressive neuromuscular disease. I felt privileged to know her through my correspondence with Barbara. Brinks’ story is an inspiration as we each face our personal struggles great and […]

Read More »
 

Who is this Kay Bridge? She’s brilliant!!!!!

I met the artist Kay Bridge three years ago in a painting master class with Leigh Hyams. At that time, Kay was beginning to work on canvas on a large scale. As I struggled to make something, “look like it is supposed to,” Kay let loose, and made it look like it’s supposed to feel. […]

Read More »
 

Bridger: Portrait of a Hunting Retriever

This post illustrates the stages in a commissioned portrait of Bridger, a Yellow Lab owned by Jane Francis of Cheyenne, Wyoming. What started as a portrait of his head evolved into a dynamic painting that more truly captured the spirit and personality of this exceptional dog.

Read More »
 

Auto: The Ferret of Them All

This week marked a career first. In my forty years doing animal portraiture, I’ve painted dogs, cats, horses, iguanas, hippos, hawks and flamingos, but never a ferret. A member of the weasel family, ferrets were once used to hunt rabbits. The subject of my painting is named Auto. Auto belongs to web designer and printmaker […]

Read More »
 

A Modern Antique: The Pedersen Bicycle Poster Project

In this post, I talk about creating an oversized poster for a Victorian era bicycle, the Pedersen, which is still in production today. I designed the poster in the style of a 19th century lithograph that might have been used to advertise the bicycle when it was first introduced in 1896.

Read More »
 

Welcome! Karl Edwards Studio Illustration + Fine Art

Welcome to my new blog. Posts provide glimpses behind the scenes of my commercial illustration and fine art studio. I’ll share my projects while they are in progress. There is a lot of variety in my work. I move between advertising campaigns, children’s books and commissioned animal portraits, tightly rendered watercolors and loose, humorous cartoons. […]

Read More »
 
Copyright © 2017 Karl Edwards| All Rights Reserved | E-mail: illustration@karledwards.com | 503-244-7773