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Curious Case of PENjamin Button

You’ve seen him as a small town criminal along side Thelma and Louise.

He reversed the aging process, striking  curiousity around the world…

He was a Vampire long before Twilighters ever hit the stage.

As Tyler Durden’s alter ego, he made the rules - “The first rule of fight Club is: you do not talk about Fight Club. The second rule of Fight Club is: you do NOT talk about Fight Club.”

Attracting world-wide media attention, he’s stirred up a play-ground style Hollywood cat fight: Team Aniston vs Team Jolie, anyone?!

He’s outsmarted the Vegas strip with Clooney and Damon, not one, not two, but Eleven, Tweleve, & Thirteen times.

BUT you’ve never seen Brad Pitt in this light before…

 

Lookin' Sharpie Mr. Pitt, lookin' sharp..

Lookin' Sharp, Mr. Pitt, lookin' sharp..

What do you think, does Beckham have a little competition here??

How can Beckham make a Sharpie look so good?

How can Beckham make a Sharpie look so good?

Have any celeb snap shots with Sharpie? Share them on Facebook!

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The Character Behind Character Design

mp picture

Meet Character Designer and new favorite Sharpie artist, Marc Perry!  I hunted down this amazing artist and all around great guy through good ‘ol Google a while back.  When I came across his blog, I found that he draws TONS of Sharpie doodles and posts them write to his own site www.studio5.blogspot.com.  This immediatley sparked my interest and I had to know who was the character behind such creativity!

Marc’s passion for style in design and exploring new and different ideas keeps things new and fresh in terms of animation, personal art and personal projects.  You may recognize this artist’s work from several popular animated television series including Ren & Stimpy, Johnny Bravo and Tiny Toon Adventures. 

Get to know Marc Perry, the person and the artist, and take a closer look at a collection his Sharpie renderings, right here on the Sharpie blog!  Here’s some background info on MP to get things rollin’…

Born and raised in North Carolina, Marc Perry started drawing at a young age, right around 3 or 4. Influenced by many different artists and styles, very much so by cartoon and animation, Perry uprooted to Southern California to work as a Character Designer in animation. 

boyWhen did you first realize you were an artist? I guess the first time was back in early elementary school.  I was always drawing and creating characters, cars, jets, spaceships and creatures from my imagination or getting inspiration from magazines and books.  I even started selling some of my drawings to classmates and making special pieces for my friends.

Many years later, while working in retail before my animation career, I discovered that one of my coworkers, an old classmate, had bought one of my drawings and still had it after so many years! *Just a bit of trivia here, one of my tattoos is a character from a major influence of mine and is a tribute to him and the inspiration his work gave me.

When was your first big break?  My first big break, I think was an opportunity offered to me by Paul Strickland (which I will always appreciate and never forget).  Briefly, the story goes like this…Once Upon a Time… No really, it was like this –-  I was working in a completely unrelated field, yet had always been drawing and tried on numerous occasions to get into animation unsuccessfully.  I made a call to Warner Bros. looking for the animation department and was connected to Paul Strickland with whom I spoke about my dream of working in animation since I was a kid.  Paul was attached as a line producer to a new show called Tiny Toon Adventures and said a new director was coming on and in need of an assistant.  To make a long story short, I made the trip to LA on the possibility of this job, was hired started that very day, which looking back now was some 20 years ago.

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I want to know all about how you started using Sharpie markers as one of your primary sketching and drawing mediums!  For many years now, Sharpie markers have been one of my primary drawing and sketching tools in character design, concept and development sketching.  The story of how I first started using Sharpie goes something like this…

When my daughter was born I found it difficult to use my usual medium, Prismacolor colored pencils or Tombo pencils, both of which require sharpening.  Since I wasn’t able to use my sharpener due to the noise, I needed to find a quiet replacement.  I found that a black Sharpie marker and heavy laser print quality paper were the ideal combination.  The Sharpie was great for line quality and the paper wouldn’t cause the ink to bleed (*Sounds like he could’ve used a Sharpie Pen, it doesn’t bleed through paper!).  The Sharpie helped me to improve my drawing technique as it’s lack of erasability made me plan ahead to what and how I was going to draw.  The permanent ink aspect was great because I was able to do colored marker comps. directly on the drawings without bleeding or smudging.

I also found that the use of a whiteout pen would allow me to make line corrections without changing the overall drawing, its look or its feel, which sometimes happens when cleaning up a drawing. 

What is your work environment like?  My work environment usually is at an animation desk, with an animation disc or at a large art table where I have access to paper, markers, paint and inspirational sources, such as books, art, and drawings.

3 things that must be within an arms length at work:

  1. Paper (laser print quality or newsprint sketch paper).
  2. Sharpie fine point markers, wide chisel tip markers, Tombo markers and my whiteout pen.
  3. Basic colored markers and pencils for working up quick doodle colors or comp. ideas.

manI read that you designed a character after your daughter.  Have you modeled any others after people in your life? How do you come up with them?

The best way I could describe how I come up with characters is by doodling with shapes, playing with different postures and adding features that help to represent the type, size, shape, attitude among other incidental features that give the character personality.  Most of the time, when I work on shows, it usually calls for creating characters for a special scene or episode based on a set style.  It is fun and challenging to create memorable characters that stand out.

With the new technology that’s out there today, what has been the most difficult part of keeping up with changes in animation?

Technology, software programs and new drawing mediums, such as the Wacom Tablet and Cintiq have changed how a great deal of production is done.  The addition of these tools and software has, for the most part, made things cleaner to work with and less wasteful, as far as materials go.  Changes and Effects, for instance, can be done very quickly and with fewer staff. 

On the other side, things have become more specialized or technical, especially with the creation of CG where people are experts of specific areas.  CG has been a boom to the entertainment industry and has allowed characters and worlds to take on a whole new reality.  With the advancement continuing and now the popularity of 3D in theaters, it appears that the old artistry of hand creation has been lost and the new generation will know nothing of traditional animation or that what they see now is only advancement do in thanks to computers and technological developments.

monsters girls

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 I imagine there are hundreds, if not thousands of elements that go into TV/Film. What specifics are you involved in? As a Character Designer, I am responsible for the creation of characters, both main and incidental, that will be used in the animation.  Sometimes the Character Designer will create the props that will be used in the animation as well.

In my last few productions, I have been involved with Visual and Concept Development, and following that through into Art Direction.

What are the best/worst parts about your job? I would honestly say that there really isn’t a worst part, it’s more the nature of the Television and Film Entertainment industry.  Those in “The Industry” know first hand that it isn’t your usual steady 9-5 job.  There are those lucky times where you can get connected with a show/series that has a long run with little to no down time, but that’s usually not the standard.  More often than not, you work on a show or series for a specified number of episodes; once those are completed there’s usually some down time or a hopefully brief layoff period until there is a decision regarding additional pickup. 

Sometimes, when multiple shows are in production you can be reassigned to another series if needed and could fit the style.  Most of the time, however, towards the end of a series you begin scrambling and searching for a new a new show to be a part of.  So, I suppose the feeling of instability, then, would be the “worst” part of my job, or the industry as a whole. 

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Now, the best part of my job – It’s a lot of fun and satisfying to be able to use specific talents and abilities and to have a career in entertaining yourself and others.  Whatever parts of the industry you work in, I think there is a certain pride you take in your work, both as an individuals and part of a collaborative team, bringing fun and entertainment to an audience.

 As a Character Designer, I have fun creating new and different characters all the time from my imagination and seeing them come to life.  As a Visual Concept Designer and Art Director, the enjoyment is creating new and imaginative characters and environments and then overseeing the visual creative process through to completion.

 

Can you tell me about what you’re working on now?  Currently, I am working on personal projects and development for my own show and series ideas.  I’m also working on ways to branch off into areas where I can produce and sell my non-animation art commercially through products, merchandise, books, or through selected galleries.

Do you have any goals that you’re working toward? I think the biggest goal for most of us in animation or as artists, for that matter, is just working and making a living.  You always have goals; it’s part of human nature, yet for artists it is usually not easy to obtain many of the ones you dream of unless everything just happens to fall into place.  I have always had big dreams and the desire to work at obtaining them, many, I can happily say, have come true and are not even art related. 

Basic CMYKLooking back, knowing what you know now, what would you want to 10 yr old Marc Perry to know?  This may come as a surprise, but….I would probably tell him to choose another career path other than art!  Being an athlete my whole life, I would probably suggest picking a sport where I could become a professional or at least use that talent to get a scholarship to a University for something in the medical field, such as becoming a surgeon, where I could use my hands and eyes for something greater!

Favorite Sharpie: The one I wrote the draft to answer these questions, a black Sharpie Fine Point Permanent Marker.  I have used these for so many character designs and concept designs, I can’t even recall.

Favorite Characters: Good question, hard to answer.  My style influence is classically based on the designers of the ’50s (stylistic and disgnee) and Retro, as it is referred to as now (flat and stylistic).  So, I would say my favorites are characters, yes, but more importantly are my favorite designers of character design.  Most of these people have been and continue to be my inspiration for many and different reasons.  Here are a few:

  • Ed Benedict
  • Tom Oreb
  • Ward Kimball
  • Mary Blair
  • Hawley Pratt
  • Bill Hurt
  • John Hubley
  • Gene Deitch
  • Jack Cole
  • Eric Sokol
  • Eldon Dedini
  • Miroslav Sasek
  • Aurelius Battaglia
  • Ed “Big Daddy” Roth

The last thing I’d Like to share is… To be able to do what I do, turning something you love and would do for free into a career is great!  To bring that fun and entertainment to others is something I think a lot of people in the industry enjoy.  I’d also like to add a word of thanks to the people who have enjoyed some of the work I’ve done and hopefully will continue doing for a long time.  I thank you all.  It’s all appreciated.  A special Thanks to Whitney Kelly who found my work and invited me to share. Best! MPerry.

***

Thank YOU Marc, for this incredible interview and all the great art you produce!  Be sure to visit Mr. MP at his very own site for more of his work and info!  www.studio5.blogspot.com.

*Uploaded your favorite Sharpie pics onto the Sharpie Uncapped Gallery.

*Become a Fan of Sharpie on Facebook!

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Know the Facts! 3rd Installment

DK picDesigner: Donna Karan

Meet Donna Karan, American fashion designer and the creator of the Donna Karan New York and DKNY clothing labels.  Growing up in NY, Donna Karan was influenced by fashion from a young age by her step-father, a tailor and her mother who was a model.  After attending Parson’s School of Design for two years, she began designing for Anne Klein and eventually head of the Anne Klein design-team.  In 1985 she left to start her own company that quickly became known for her Essentials line, which offered 7 easy pieces every woman should own.  Three years later, in ’88 the DKNY collection was introduced,  as a modern, moderately-priced young collection, drawing from the spirit of big city life.

Karan’s clothing is designed to enhance and look good on every woman, not just coming down the runway.  Donna Karan is known to support the needs of modern women with her clothing. The saying goes, that before the production of a piece of clothes is approved by Karan, it has to look good on her! 

Find Donna Karan’s fashions at Donna Karan New York.  This desinger’s information was acquired at Fashion Infomat. 

jsDesigner: Jill Stuart

Designer Jill Stuart was deep into the fashino industry since birth, as her parents owned a popular ’60s Manhattan clothing store called Mister Pants, dressing stars including Natalie Wood and Lucille Ball.  Leveraging those connections, Stuart was able to  jump-start her own career.  At 15, this Manhattan native designer had jewelery and handbags displayed in the windows of high end stores including Bloomingdale’s, Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue, Henri Bendel and Neiman Marcus.  

The Jill Stuart label became well known for innovative ad campaigns with top fashion photographers.  While other designers were going grunge in the early 90′s Stuart turned to preppy and plaids, which became notoriously linked to the popular teen movie, Clueless.  Stuart’s feminine, sometimes frilly collections can be found in her Soho flagship, as well as in higher-end department stores, and has come to include handbags, shoes, and perfume. In 2007, Stuart launched a secondary line called Jill by Jill Stuart featuring ready-to-wear pieces at lower prices.

You can find Jill Stuarts beautiful collections at JillStuart.com.

All designer information was found from an article featured in New York Magazine. 

Bryant ParkDesigner: Tia Ciabani, Ports 1961

Under the vision of Creative Director, Tia Cibani, Ports 1961 launched from New York City in 2004 .  With a dream to build a luxury brand within a global village, Ciabani now leads the brand in its embrace of the modern woman, the individualist who dares to try something new.

European fabrics, fine tailoring along with hand crafted details found in both the industrial and organic are cornerstones of all Ports 1961 collections, each of which is inspired by a specific person, culture, place or time.  For her 2010 Spring runway show at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, Cibani collaborated with artist Ritsuko Hirai to integrate ancient craft and a modern sensibility. Tia Ciabani has created and delivered a collection that will elevate any woman’s wardrobe with truly beautiful, delicate and romantic pieces.

This designer’s information was found at Ports 1961.  Be sure to check out the beautiful collections and pieces that Ports 1961 has to offer at www.ports1961.com

rrDesigner: Rachel Roy

Originally from California, Rachel graduated from Washington DC then moved to New York to pursue her passion for design, working freelance – styling magazine shoots and music videos ultimately landing an internship at Rocawear where she was able to master her craft and build several influential relationships.  In Fall 2004, Roy introduced her own collection, RACHEL ROY, which debuted in department and specialty stores for Spring 2005. Using her sophisticated aesthetic to her own collection, incorporated with striking silhouettes, a sophisticated color palette and day-to-night pieces, Roy has attracted editorial acclaim in publications such as Vogue, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, W and Vanity Fair.

Dressing icons and starlettes including the likes of Michelle Obama, Kate Hudson, Lucy Liu and Penelope Cruz, also featured on The Oprah Winfrey show, RACHEL ROY is making a prominent and influential mark on fashion.  

RACHEL ROY NEW YORK has grown to include four full collections each year and recently created a joint venture with Jones Apparel Group Inc. in the hopes of expanding the wholesale business globally, introduce new product categories and open stand-alone stores in the United States and abroad.  To date, the RACHEL ROY collections are available at Saks Fifth Avenue, Bergdorf Goodman, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and top specialty stores worldwide.

Click HERE to find stunning RACHEL ROY collections.

All of this designer’s information was found at RachelRoy.com

logo-CityOfHope1City of Hope:

Hundreds of fundraising events are held for City of Hope across the nation each year. Every dollar raised advances our mission to transform innovative research into treatments that save lives here and around the world. Hundreds of thousands of people share your desire to make a difference by driving us to work even harder to conquer cancer and other serious diseases. On behalf of patients and their loved ones, we invite you to join the effort.

Such Events include: Walk For Hope, Eggleston Desert Gold Classic , Fight For Life and the Sierra Madre Wine and Jazz Walk.  

Breast Cancer Facts:

The seriousness of invasive breast cancer is strongly influenced by the stage of the disease; that is, the extent or spread of the cancer when it is first diagnosed. There are two main staging systems for cancer. The American Joint Committee on Cancer classification of tumors uses information on tumor size and how far it has spread within the breast and nearby organs (T), lymph node involvement (N), and the presence or absence of distant metastases (spread to distant organs) (M). II, III, or IV is assigned, with stage I being an early stage and stage IV being the most advanced. The AJCC staging system is commonly used in clinical settings.

 A simpler system used for staging of cancers is known as the SEER Summary Stage system and is more commonly used in reporting to cancer registries and for public health research and planning.  According to this system:

– Local-stage tumors are cancers confined to the breast.

– Regional-stage tumors have spread to surrounding tissue or nearby lymph nodes.

– Distant-stage cancers have metastasized (spread) to distant organs.

This information was provided by the American Cancer Society’s Breast Cancer Facts and Figures 2009-2010.  Find the PDF version HERE.

Auction Details:

Visit www.sharpieuncapped.com to participate in the auction and bid on designers’ Sharpie art work  and be sure to read Works of Art From the Heart for more info on the auction and Know the Facts 1 & 2.

Sharpie, Uncap What’s Inside!

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Know the Facts! 1st Installment

tory burchDesigner: Tory Burch

Tory Burch prides itself on being an attainable, luxury, lifestyle brand defined by classic American sportswear with an eclectic sensibility.  The line embodies the personal style and spirit of its co-founder and creative director, Tory Burch.  Opening her first flagship store in February 2004 in NYC, Burch designed the boutique to feel more like a room in her own home versusa traditional retail store, with key design elements to include orange lacquer doors, mirrored walls, and Lucite fixtures.  Graphic prints, bold colors and ethnic detailing are all signatures of the brand.

Burch finds draws creative influence from her mother and father’s unique personal styles, in addition to art, photography, films travel, and the work of interior designer David Hicks.  Tory Burch is available at 16 free-standing Tory Burch boutiques across the US, over 400 select department and specialty stores worldwide, and online at www.toryburch.com. 

This information was acquired from the brand’s website.  For more info on the fabulous designer and her line please visit www.toryburch.com.

tracyreeseDesigner: Tracy Reese

This Parsons School of Design alum has apprenticed under Martine Sitbon, worked for the small contemporary firm, Arlequin, and has worked at some of the industry’s top fashion houses, including Perry Ellis where she was the design director for Women’s Portfolio.  In Spring 1998, Reese launched her collection.  Known for her distinctive look of ultra-feminine pieces layered with intelligent nostalgia, charm and luxury, the line is perfect for the modern woman who simply loves to be a girl.  That same year, the designer introduced her second line, plenty by Tracy Reese, a bohemian, ethnic-inspired collection that is of-the-moment, yet never trendy. The collection is both eclectic and adventurous, featuring Reese’s signature detailing.

Since their initial launches, both Tracy Reese and plenty by Tracy Reese have expanded into several brand categories. Tracy Reese footwear, handbags and belts feature ladylike silhouettes in luxurious leathers with exquisite detailing; while the whimsical, feminine and eclectic, plenty brand now includes a home collection, candles, cosmetic cases and handbags. Reese added a third collection to her line up, frock!, comprised of fun and flirty occasion dresses that easily transition from day to evening.

Bright colors, unique prints and intricate patterns define Tracy Reese, plenty and frock!  All three lines! are sold nationwide in top department stores and specialty boutiques including Bergdorf Goodman, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Anthropologie and Scoop as well as retailers throughout Europe and Asia.

This information was acquired from the brand’s website.  For more info on the wonderful designer and her line please visit www.tracyreese.com.

logo-CityOfHope1City of Hope Fact

City of Hope is one of only 40 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers nationwide and a founding member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network. An independent biomedical research, treatment and education institution, City of Hope is a leader in the fight to conquer cancer, diabetes, HIV/AIDS and other life-threatening diseases.

Visit www.cityofhope.org for more details on how you can get involved and more information about the organization.

Breast Cancer Fact

Breast cancer is the most common cause of cancer in women and the second most common cause of cancer death in women in the U.S. between the ages of 45 and 55. Although breast cancer in women is a common form of cancer, male breast cancer does occur and accounts for about 1% of all cancer deaths in men.

Auction Details

Visit www.sharpieuncapped.com to participate in the auction and bid on designers’ Sharpie art work  and be sure to read Works of Art From the Heart for more info on the auction! 

 

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Works of Art From the Heart

Sharpie and fashion icons join forces to support breast cancer awareness.

In support of Breast Cancer Awareness month, Sharpie has teamed up with some of fashion’s finest designers in a charity initiative to benefit City of Hope, a Breast Cancer research, awareness and education center. 

A host of top fashion designers including Tracy Reese, Milly, Prabal Gurung, DKNY, Tory Burch and many more, have joined Sharpie to create works of inspiring art with a theme to empower women!  These amazing sketches, along with a t-shirt designed exclusively for Sharpie by fashion icon and breast cancer survivor Betsey Johnson, will be donated to City of Hope, a leading research, treatment and education center for cancer and other life threatening disease. 

 

The auction begins Friday, October 23th @1pm (PST) & ends Sunday, November 2nd@  1pm (PST).

 

Visit us at www.sharpieuncapped.com to learn more about how to participate and bid on one-of-a-kind art pieces created by fashion’s finest!  Pictures of the designer’s canvases will be featured on Sharpie Uncapped ,the Sharpie Fan page on Facebook and bid on these exclusive designer canvases at www.auctionsforhope.org.

 ribbon and uncappedA big THANK YOU goes out to all the fashion designers participating in the auction!  Your designs are beautiful and your contribution will help to touch millions!

Be sure to pick up your Sharpie Pink Ribbon markers and highlighters this month, benefitting City of Hope. Check out the Pink Ink at www.sharpie.com

 

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Sharpie Sighting – Twilight’s Kristen Stewart

Kristen Stewart signs with Sharpie

Where the stars go, so does Sharpie!

Just as everyone expected, the vampire romance “Twilight” opened like gangbusters this weekend, raking in $70.5 million in ticket sales.    The movie is based on Stephenie Meyer’s novel of forbidden love between vampire Edward Cullen and bookish high schooler Bella Swan, played by Kristen Stewart.  Stewart signed autographs with a Sharpie at one of the premiers.  While the book was at first considered a teen read, it wasn’t long before word spread and grown women found themselves swooming over the neck-biting romance.    I haven’t read it but I have plenty of friends who have.  Here’s one review:

“Okay, I admit I saw Twilight with my sister today and my heart went pitter patter for Edward. I couldn’t put the book down either! Ah to be a teenager again and in love with a gorgeous vampire!!!!!”

Check out the Twilighters Sharpie Shoe movement. Twilight fans are showing their support with Sharpie!

Sharpie Solidarity

Sharpie Solidarity

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Jessica Simpson Uncapped

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While you relaxed over the weekend, Sharpie markers were hard at work.  For the Sharpie that never sleeps, each Monday we will post images of your Sharpie Sightings.  Send us a photo (jpeg) of Sharpie in action, doing what Sharpie does best out in the world (Write Out Loud!) and we’ll do our best to post it here.   Bonus points for your own original images of famous people working their Sharpie magic.
Jessica Simpson may not know chicken from tuna but when it comes to signing autographs, she knows her Sharpie markers.  People magazine ran this photo of Jessica using a Sharpie Retractable marker to help launch her new fragrance, Fancy, at Dillards in Dallas.   The cool thing about Sharpie Retractable markers is you don’t have to remember where you put the cap – that’s because there isn’t one!  Perfect for people with better things to worry about, like salad or casserole.