Friday, December 13, 2013

Holiday SJMade Pop Up

At the Holiday SJMade Pop Up, you'll find me there with my Steampunk ABC books, prints and more December 13th to 15th. Come on by for your holiday gifts!

Monday, December 09, 2013

Steampunk ABC signing

I'm signing Steampunk ABC at Illusive Comics & Games, December 11th, from 11:30 am to 8:30 pm. Come dressed in a steampunk outfit and receive a little gift!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

SF Bazaar Holiday Show

Start your arts and crafts gift giving at the SF Bazaar Holiday Show, December 7th to 8th! My booth is #92 on the main floor of the Concourse Center. I'll have a special steampunk gift package available, so come on by! Free admission to all.

Here are some illustrations from my Steampunk Animal 2014 Calendar.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Less than 36 hours left

Steampunk Animal 2014 Calendar is in its final hours! The Kickstarter closes November 25th, 9 pm PDT. Pledge, if you really want one! I will have a very, very limited amount of the calendars available online later.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Monday, November 04, 2013

Monday, October 28, 2013

Gentleman Octopus redux

Gentleman Octopus redux - sneak peek of my upcoming project. Hopefully, I can announce the launch on November 4th.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Steampunk ABC signing

I'm signing Steampunk ABC at Treasure Island Comics, October 30th from 4 to 7 pm. Dress up in a steampunk outfit and receive a surprise gift at the signing! Check the out the Facebook Event page for more info.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Luna Sail

Cover for upcoming comics anthology, Omni. I'll get back to the Inktober drawings by tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Today's Catch, page 4

Today's Catch, page four of four. The printed version will have dialogue and sound effects.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Day 1, Inktober

My first Inktober drawing. I'm not sure if I can do one a day, so I may end up doing it every other day. I'm going to use it as an excuse to try out character design types for a possible project.

Today's Catch, page 2

Here's page two of four from Today's Catch. I'll add in the dialogue, sound effects, and make any corrections once all the pages are completed.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

APE 2013

I'm tabling with the Couscous Collective at APE, October 12th to 13th. We're at tables #307 and 308. Stop on by for great comics, prints, the new Couscous Collective anthology Feast and, of course, my Steampunk ABC children's book!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Sonoma County Book Festival

I'm exhibiting at the Sonoma County Book Festival on September 21st from 10 am to 4 pm. Also, I'm on a panel, Novel Storytelling: the Art of the Graphic Novel with Brent Anderson, Emily C. Martin, and  Alexis Fajardo from 10:30 to 11:45 am. I will have copies of Steampunk ABC, my comic Encounters and art prints available. Come on by for this free and fun event!

Saturday, September 07, 2013

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Steampunk ABC Kickstarter, one year later

A year ago this week, I launched a Kickstarter for my children's book, Steampunk ABC. I had the book concept for a few years and Kickstarter was the best platform to get the book printed. I could have invested my own funds as I have done for my previous books, but the allure of sharing my art with a wider audience and help with the costs was decisive. In addition to Kickstarter, there's Indiegogo and Patreon among others for crowd funding options. I chose Kickstarter because I liked the all-or-nothing aspect, the limited time frame, and its popular press.

It took months of preparation before the project went live and I had friends who pitched in with video editing and illustration feedback. I handled all the production of the finished project, marketing, communication, and fulfillment of the rewards. It was a roller coaster experience. I was not prepared for the lull in the middle after hitting over 25% my goal in the first week. With the generosity of my friends, family, and fellow artists backing the project, they helped to share the campaign via their social media contacts. I got online coverage from sites like and which highlighted Steampunk ABC as a project to back. Steampunk ABC was selected as a Staff Pick by the Kickstarter staff. I visited online steampunk forums to promote the project. Geek Girl Crafts interviewed me for their podcast. Whenever I updated the project, I shared it on Twitter, Facebook, etc. to keep interest up and asked backers to do the same. I also distributed flyers promoting the Kickstarter campaign at a local zinefest and gaming convention.

I based my funding goal of $9000 on what I wanted the book to look like: hardback with spot gloss and glossy paper. Two-thirds was for a print run of 1000, including copyright registration and acquisition of an ISBN. I got three different quotes and some book samples from Chinese printing companies with stateside offices before deciding on one. The remaining third covered Kickstarter fees, extra reward items, shipping materials, postage, and taxes. The cost per book, despite the four to six weeks' shipping time from overseas, was the deciding factor over using a US printer or a print on demand service. I didn't opt to have stretch goals because I wanted to deliver the book the way I envisioned it. I added in the coloring book as an extra reward bonus, but I think adding it earlier to the campaign would have been better. The coloring book was printed in the US as it was not in hardback. The print runs of 1000 Steampunk ABC books and 250 coloring books were not all claimed via the Kickstarter campaign. In the end, 276 Steampunk ABC books and 94 coloring books were delivered to the backers.

The reward tiers I offered worked well, barring the higher levels including the art prints. If I shared more completed art work, I could have probably raised more funding from those tiers. For stretch goals next time, I would use the number of backers to unlock more bonuses or project upgrades instead raising a certain amount of funds. I think that would encourage backers to spread the word more. I definitely recommend having a project completed prior to launching a crowd funding campaign, especially if you're an unknown creator. I already had materials for the prints, sketches and watercolors for the rewards. What I didn't take into account how long it would take to finish the black/white sketches and watercolor paintings. Most backers were forgiving of my lateness due to my updates and I answered inquiries within a day.

To mitigate late deliveries, Kickstarter has since requires creators fill out a Risks and Challenges section for each project. Also, I encourage backers to use an email they check regularly. I had several non-respondent backers contact me months after 98% of the rewards were shipped. To date, I have delivered the rewards for 248 backers out of 251. The last ones haven't responded to the Kickstarter survey and/or direct email. I still have their rewards available, but I can't send them.

Due to not completing the book soon enough, I had to pay a higher post rate because it went up in January 2013. Instead of asking for backers to ante more money, I ate the difference and the shipping for replacing damaged copies. The other surprise cost was FedEx shipping from the printing company for extra proofs. I was complicit for not getting the files to print spec and content corrections. Packing and shipping the rewards was made easier by color coding the mailing labels for each tier. I sent out Steampunk ABC rewards to 35 states and 13 countries outside of the US.

Steampunk ABC took about nine months to complete the book, including running the Kickstarter campaign and reward fulfillment. The campaign was set up to pay for printing up Steampunk ABC, not for my time or skills to create the book and rewards or running the Kickstarter. Most book and comic projects on Kickstarter are set up this way. From the Kickstarter funds, I have $152.51 left out of $8642.42, which was the lump sum I received after Kickstarter fees and before taxes. If I hadn't over funded to $9499, I would have to put in another $200 or so at the $9000 goal in order to finish shipping all the rewards. This is even with my hand delivering to local friends and family to save postage. Selling the remaining inventory is where I hope to recoup my time.

My Steampunk ABC Kickstarter was a great learning experience in self-publishing overseas and marketing. I enjoyed sharing my art with backers unfamiliar with my work. In fact, I did receive a couple job offers, but they didn't pan out. I'd do another project on Kickstarter with one much closer to completion and spend more time promoting the project before the campaign goes live. Building up interest and an audience is crucial to making the funding goal. It was rewarding to create a successful Kickstarter campaign. Crowd funding is definitely worth the effort with the right project.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

SF Zinefest

I'm sharing table #13 with Brian Kolm at SF Zinefest on August 31st to September 1st. Come on by!

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum & SJ Jazz Summerfest

Reminder: I'm doing a Steampunk ABC book signing as part of the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum's Special Salute to Artists Night on August 10th. I'll be there from 7 to 10 pm. More information below:
The next day on August 11th, I'll be at the SJ Jazz Summerfest. Check out the map below for my exact location. Come to either event! Both promise great entertainment and a chance to pick up my artwork in person.

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Skin Horse pin up

Steampunk pin up featuring the misfit agents of Skin Horse by Shaenon K. Garrity and Jeffrey C. Wells.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Steampunk ABC signing

I'm doing a Steampunk ABC book signing as part of the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum's Special Salute to Artists Night on August 10th. I'll be there from 7 to 10 pm. Come on by!

Friday, July 05, 2013

Zeppelin 2

Another zeppelin done in watercolors on Arches cold press.

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Monday, July 01, 2013

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Steam ship 2

Another steam ship done in watercolors on Arches cold press.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Monday, June 24, 2013

Summer Manga Workshops

I'm teaching manga workshops at the Cartoon Art Museum on July 27 and August 16 for kids and teens. More details and sign up information. Come level up your drawing skills!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Monday, June 17, 2013

Friday, June 14, 2013

Days 24-31 of RPG Class Challenge

Last of the 31 day RPG Class Challenge.

Day 24 - Strategist

Day 25 - Mime

Day 26 - Bard

Day 27 - Politician

Day 28 - Engineer

Day 29 - Summoner

Day 30 - Blacksmith

Day 31 - Gambler

Thursday, June 13, 2013