Monday, January 30, 2012

Week 4: Neighborhood of Make Believe

(Bert by Nacho Díaz )

Howdy Neighbor! We've met a bevy of monsters, found ourselves menaced by the God of the Gun, lost some time worshiping the Goddess of Procrastination and nearly consumed by Galactus. Time now to put on our indoor shoes, put on a comfy cardigan and wonder into the Neighborhood of Make Believe! This week the RBMC attacks our collective childhood! Big Bird, King Friday, that frog from Gullah Gullah Island not even a purple dinosaur who shall not be named is safe from our piercing eyes or worse our oddly shaped brains! So enjoy the next week, how you see your beloved childhood characters my change, FOREVER!

Tim W3:Galactus!

EDIT: Galactus Cometh!

Well, sorry to be tardy to the party (again), I've never drawn the big purple planet eater before, and I kinda got carried away drawing all that killer Kirby kewl-ness, but after a long and seemingly hopeless struggle, a strange bald entity wearing a shimmering space toga appeared to me brandishing a weapon of unimaginable" Ultimate" cosmic power, using the weapon I was able to "Nullify" the great space god's power in a manner most mighty, I was left with only this drawing to commemorate the marvelous event .... or you know, I may have dreamed this...I need sleep, Excelsior!

Ink on paper drawing, colored in photoshop, as always go here to check out the rough line work: 

and for a (much) larger view go here:

work in progress post

Galactus is officially kicking my ass, it's 2am Monday morning and he is going to win.... for tonight (stupid procrastination gods). This is a "work in progress", I just wanted to post something, when I'm done I'll edit this post with a finished  "Devourer of Worlds".

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Mrs. Galactus

What does the omnipotent, planet eating entity known as Galactus fear more than The Watcher?..More than the FF? More than even The Ultimate Nullifier? That's right...Mrs. Galactus. When she's not making him hang ceiling fans and taking out the trash..this powerhouse persona of female power calls the shots. Planet eater? Bah, she says! BAH!! She finds the largest and most fertile planet (She has no need of a mail lackey to find her food source.) and one she begins to feed on it's energy all surrounding planets are sucked in by her consumption. She eats entire solar systems. Oh yeah. She's that badass. She shows who wears the pants...or skirts in this relationship. Tremble and fear Big G! Tremble and fear!!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Week 3: Ants! We're All Ants!

I think about Galactus a lot, probably a lot more than I should.  

I wanted to do something to counteract the pragmatism of my post last week, and I wanted to draw a lot of things, and I think I did just that.  I love drawing in this hatch heavy style, and someday soon hope to find a reason to use it besides drawing on place mats.

If you haven't already, do yourself a favor and read the Fantastic Four #48-50. It's really one of the best stories the medium has to offer, and is a constant inspiration for me.
Man, he just looks so cool.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Week 3: Galact-adorable

I am a career cute-artist. I spend my days drawing princesses and pirates - the more googly-eyed and sparkly, the better. It can be difficult to stop drawing adorably when you do it everyday and, this time around, my brain was reluctant to switch into evil-villain mode. And so, I present to you... the most squeezable planet-devouring monster ever.

Last week, Ben said that he was trying to get away from drawing flat figures. I have the same problem and this Galactus is my attempt to play it a little less safe. I think its is relatively successful, though I am too tired to make sure all the lighting is correct.

Oh and yeah, this is TOTALLY a subconscious Katamari homage.  "Na NaNaNaNa Na Na  Katamari Damacy..."

HEY! 16 days to showtime:

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Week 3: OM NOM NOM

That's right in space it's pants optional and I guess the same goes for Art History. This lil' drawing is based on Goya's, "Saturn Devouring His Son". So there you go, pantsless Galactus eating Silver Surfer, enjoy!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Week 3: Galactus Is Hungry

So I can admit it, while I really enjoy Marvel, I've always been more of a DC guy.  Having said that, the only real knowledge I have of Galactus is that he is a devourer of worlds.  And that's pretty much all I had as for a jumping off point.  When I first started sketching him, I kept it pretty close to my normal "animation" style.  The farther along I went, the more I realized what a complex character he is design wise.  I eventually got really fond of all the little details and the rim lighting that I've recently become obsessed with.  I'm still looking for a good way to achieve the marker and colored pencil look that I love so much while still only working in digital medium.  I'm sure I'll figure something out.  Hope you like.

Personal Blog: Still-Reaching
Twitter: NeedYourDisease

Week 3: Galactus

That's right.  90 weapons.
Making the lateral move from a deities to a devourer of worlds, this week the RBMC takes on Galactus.  Notify the president, call the marines, and alert the Fantastic Four, because we're gonna harness the power cosmic and decimate this city with pencils.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Tim, Week 2: Goddess of Procrastination

So when I first started this piece, she was going to be the "Goddess of Procrastination" (which I inadvertently end up worshiping way too much), and I guess I can still think of her like that, but in my opinion she turned out to be more like some sort of "Cyber-Reality-Life-Sucking Goddess", which I'm okay with because I also tend to worship her a lot as well. 

She was done with Ink on paper and then colored in Photoshop.
If you want to see the uncolored raw inks check them out at my personal blog here:

Week 2: Cadaver Fairy

The Cadaver Fairy is the dangerous rotting smell of early spring. She's the progenitor of desperate, bad decisions. Goddess of tepid pools, moths and the forgotten dead. If she is seen at all it is in late winter, early spring when she retrieves the bodies of the unfortunate from thawing ponds and marshes and stows them deep in the woods to be found or to rot.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Hide If You Want...

...she sees what you're thinking.

Wanted to go for something a little more Eastern/Mystical.  Basically, someone that would make you nervous that you were giving something away with every little tick or expression.

I'm trying to get back into my digital painting in order to challenge myself a bit.  I tried a little different lighting than I'm used to, but feel I dropped the ball on the pose.  I remember listening to an episode of the Sidebar Podcast and Lauren Montgomery (director of a good number of DC Universe animated films) said that at a certain point she decided that she needed to stop drawing the flat character facing the camera with no background.  I'm going to try and make an effort to be a little more courageous with my poses and camera angles.

The exciting thing is, thanks to this group, I really feel like I'm learning on a more regular basis.  With any luck, at the end of the year I'll be able to look back at this and to see exactly how I could have fixed it.  Loving the Rust Belt Monsters!

Personal Blog: Still-Reaching
Twitter: NeedYourDisease

Friday, January 20, 2012

Week 2: God Of Realistic Love

With Valentines Day around the corner, I wanted to do a god of love.  Since most marriages end in divorce, I threw down an anti-cupid.  

A screw-pid I guess.

Lord of the Gun

It is the name whispered by many a gunfighter. In that moment in the sun before the dirt and blood, in the blink of an eye, before the gun is drawn. They whisper, "God please let me be faster." But no god would favor the taking of a life. Except one. It is said he was the first human life taken by a bullet. No one knows when or where. He died unknown and nameless. There are many stories of who he may have been and how, or more importantly, why he died. Some believe he was slain defending his country. Others say he was killed and robbed over material possessions or defending a loved one. No matter the nature of his downfall, he is always there when a gun is drawn. He alone decides who lives and who dies. He harbors no ill will and judges with extreme prejudice. Always accompanied by his mistress. Death.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Week 2: The God of the Kiln Room

There is a lot that can go wrong in pottery. Pots can go wonky on the wheel, crack during drying, get bumped by little kids that share the studio, or get subjected to a misbehaving glaze. And if a piece survives all that, it can simply blow up in the kiln. Its a crazy, stressful process to put yourself through again and again. To quote a good friend and fellow artist, "Hey, I really like this thing I just spent 40 hours on! ...I think I'll light it on fire now."

With all that uncertainty on the fate of our art, we Ceramicists share a common religion: we PRAY to the pottery gods. There are many of them; the god of water, the god of clay, the god of the humidity in the room. But most importantly, there is the KILN GOD who makes all this magic possible. I pictured him as a dragon like smoke creature with eyes that are useless in a usually dark kiln room. Pots MUST be sacrificed to him regularly. It is very important to keep him distracted...

This sketch is in pencil and then Photoshop. I wanted to make it much more complicated, but it's my bedtime. I also have lots of ideas for the other pottery gods. Eh, I'll get to them someday I guess.

HEY! Did you know I have a gallery show opening in 3 weeks?

Monday, January 16, 2012

Week 2: Design a Deity

Erin here - Wow, "Monster Avatar" week was awesome!! Lets keep the ball rolling with this week's theme: Design a Deity.

The world is full of mythologies. Human history and imagination has given us thousands of gods with their own personalities, back stories, and responsibilities. They vary in every flavor, alignment, shape and color - from the old man with a beard to the flying spaghetti monster. This week, we humble artists are tasked with designing six more of these divine beings. Join us as the RBMC takes on our toughest challenge yet: RELIGION.

Tim W1: Design your own Rust Belt MONSTER

Well, better late than never..right, technically it's Monday (barely) so I officially missed posting during our 1st week, the procrastination gods kicked my ass this week (I'm am their ever faithful servant...(I totally just figured out what I'm going to draw for this coming weeks' topic - design a deity)), Well, anyway, introduction info dump time: my name is Tim Switalski...I draw stuff, sometimes...sometimes I even get paid to do that, and I really love run-on sentences (the grammar police among you may have noticed by now).

If you want to see more of my stuff...just wait a week I'll be here...(better make that a week and a day...I'll work on that)

or go here: (haven't updated this in a while but I'm gonna fix that soon)

or here:  (I'm better with updating this one)

or for the sadists among you here is my outdated(MUST FIX SOON) portfolio site:

Okay, enough babbling, sleep now, more to come...later.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Ben Hale

In what is probably going to be a long line of me falling behind, here is my first piece for the Rust Belt Monsters.  My name is Ben Hale.  Born in Cleveland and currently living slightly outside of it (Newbury), I've been drawing as long as I can remember.  It seems like just yesterday I was sitting in kindergarten and growing increasingly frustrated at my drawing's nose and convincing myself that I could get it right.  I've always had a fondness for cartoons and find my inspiration in the more "animator-friendly" works of Bruce Timm and Glen Keane.  A couple years ago I decided to stop being jealous of highly motivated people and become one of them.  I'm extremely honored to be counted among these five other artists and am looking forward to the work we'll produce as well as the inevitable personal growth.

Personal Blog: Still-Reaching
Twitter: NeedYourDisease
DeviantArt: Sman118

Saturday, January 14, 2012

GLAR (Jim Giar)

 Howdy! My name is Jim Giar but I've settled on a name that I picked up in art school when they used to mis-pronounce my last name due to my crappy hand writing. So you can just refer to me as GLAR... I've always seen myself as a "Pop Cultural Brat". Raised during the late 60's and 70's on all that is deemed unseedy by society. An unhealthy dose of comics, B-rated horror flicks and grindhouse cinema along with an affinity for Famous Monsters of Filmland, Eerie and Creepy magazines as a kid. I've been drawing since the age of 4 and as far as I remember, my first drawing was of Dr. Suess Horton Hears A Who and a newspaper comic strip of Hi and Lois. Most of my work has been in comics, but over that last year or so I've been trying to branch out and push myself. I favor throwing of any boundaries and allowing my work to live on it's own energy. I now believe it's better to focus on what others feel about my art, as opposed to what others think about it. I've taught several workshops on sequential storytelling and sketch cards. I cannot express how honored I am to have fallen in with this group of artists that never cease to amaze, inspire and motivate me. Wurd.
You can find me here:
My site and portfolio:

Friday, January 13, 2012

Mr.Crider If Ya Nasty

What up dudes. My name's Randolph Crider, and here's a drawing of me battling a monster the only way I know how.  I got my start doing small press comics, and now a days illustrate storyboards, flyers, text books, and even get to teach.

I've been a Clevelander all my life, except for the year I spent in San Francisco learning how to make cartoons at Academy Of Art University.  While I'm not cheerleader for the area,  I know that I've got the best pals a guy could want, and that's the only reason to stay anywhere.

If you've got the time, here's some places you'll find me on the ol interwebs.

Thanks for looking, and check back often, all these dudes are amazing.


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Erin the Art Monster

Art Monstress!

Hello and welcome to our shared corner of the internet. I'm Erin Schechtman - professional illustrator and product designer by day; fine artist and art teacher by night. I was born in Cleveland, raised in PA, educated in New York and found myself back in Cleveland when I got a job designing for a major crafting supply company.  My monster is some sort of art-Medusa alter ego I guess. And she is BAD-ASS.

A little about me.... When I am at work, I make products like this:

From this website
 and this:

From some sort of Halloween Costume Site

 and this:

From This was a HUGE program - I got to design lots and lots of stuff in different styles :)

...many, many, many more - from wood shapes to scrapbooking items (like an entire line of stickers), to kid's crafts and party decorations.  I get to be creative everyday and I LOVE my job.

However,  when I am at home, I make work like this:

And this:

And this:

What can I say? I get bored easily. ...Actually, what is more accurate is that I can't get enough of this stuff. I enjoy everything that I do - from the Adobe Illustrator rendered products at work to the messy stuff at home. I want to learn everything and soak it up like a sponge. Life is too short to sit still when there are things to create and paintings to paint. I want to be an art monster, just like my illustration up above.

So... that's me. Somewhat a jack-of-all-art-trades. I do well enough to get by in a lot of different mediums without mastering any of them. Maybe someday I'll learn enough, but we'll see. I'm pretty happy on the journey.

Here is where you can find me on the web:

Teaching Blog:
Upcoming Show Blog:
Absolutely Ancient College Website:

Later Gators!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Howdy Doo!

Howdy all, I'm Craig and this is my monster and yes he's (or she, I don't know) is wearing chaps. I'm a Freelance Illustrator which in short means I draw stuff for people. I've done books, tattoos, posters, shirts, RPG card illustration, product design, web stuff, logo work, toy concepts stuff and now this lil' feller. I'm originally from West "BY GAWD" Virginia and if you were here I would show you a colorful hand gesture that closely simulates the state to show you exactly from where.......way down at the bottom. I came to Cleveland to go to Art school, got a job up here soon after and stuck around. Why? aside from the all of my wonderful friends it would seem that Cleveland has a familiar chip on it's shoulder that I grew up with as a West Virginian. It comes from being the butt of EVERY joke yet knowing better. It's kind of an, "..well I'll show you", clenched fist attitude that I like.
So there ya go, that's me in a nutshell. If you want to delve further here are some links:
me on Facebook
my other, older blog that I still contribute to
my website that I PROMISE will be updated soon

BUT if you are smart you'll stick around to see the next post cause these guys are CRAZY GOOD!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

We Are The Rust Belt Monster Collective

Welcome to the Rust Belt Monster Collective. We are a group of Cleveland-area artists and visual storytellers that have formed with the intent of challenging and supporting each other as we each grow in our artistic endeavors. Through weekly challenges, determined by the members and randomly drawn, we will each showcase our own personal styles and techniques. Please bookmark or follow the blog as we will be starting with our own Rust Belt Monsters and a little information to help you get to know us.