My Illustration for a Business Birthday E-Card

I drew this car parade birthday illustration for Furia Rubel Communications last year. They originated the idea and needed me to make it into an image for them to send out with their best wishes to their clients. I think it’s a great way to make a touchpoint with each client – a beneficial marketing strategy – and remind their clients of the whole team of people working for their interests. I have often drawn the FRC team for projects in the past.

I started with a pencil sketch of the whole train of cars and caricatures of each FRC member.

When that was ok’d I printed out a copy and did a rough color sketch with markers and colored pencils. The great thing about sending out ecards is, there is no more expense in doing full color over black and white. On computer screens, color is free!

I decided to colorize this illustration using digital color, so the colors would match those in the FRC logo and other hues on their website. I drew each carload in black line, then filled it in with digital color.

After drawing and colorizing each piece of the picture this way I assembled them onto one page and added the banner, balloons and honking horns.

Another advantage of assembling this piece digitally is that if employees change from year to year, I can adjust the picture accordingly. And in fact, this year I was asked to add new team members and remove some who have moved on; so with some tweaks Furia Rubel will have an updated ecard showing their full team for 2022.

More Pen and Ink Bucks County Houses

In addition to the house drawing I posted a few days ago, I also drew these two lovely homes a number of years back, for the St. Paul’s Church Christmas in Doylestown House Tour. I used pen and ink, which I think gives a timeless quality to a drawing.

The first is a two-story colonial with a charming wrought iron fence and gate and a bracket portico over the front door. It was designed by local builder Jay Maxwell.

The house below, behind a stately crenellated stone fence, was built by Asher Cox in 1828 and is the oldest brick house in Doylestown borough. It was sold in 1831 to cabinet maker Lester Rich for $600!

I’ll post some more ink drawings from my picturesque home town soon.

My Latest Illustration for a Hotel Magazine

My latest assignment from Lodging magazine was an article about the difficulty in finding good employees in the hotel industry, and tips for holding onto those dependable and conscientious ones. I personally found the article lacking in solid solutions for these problems, which made finding an idea to illustrate more challenging.

I did think of two scenes leading up to the hiring of an employee, so I sketched them roughly in pencil. The first showed an interviewee being coaxed by other employees as well as the personnel manager to accept the new job.

The second showed a woman passing a lot of Help Wanted signs on a hotel, with a manager leaning out the door to tap her on the shoulder, and hopefully to tap her skills too.

The editor liked the second idea more, and asked me to switch the people so a female manager was leaning out to tap a male hire on the shoulder. I sent a revised pencil sketch.

I made a quick color sketch using colored pencils on a photocopy of the sketch.

I drew this onto cold press illustration board in black prisma pencil, then painted it with acrylic washes. The finish is below.

Cryptocurrency Illustration for a Hotel Magazine

My monthly illustration for an article for Lodging magazine focused on how new electronic currencies, like Bitcoin, may impact the hotel industry.

Because cryptocurrencies, as they are called, exist only virtually, this article presented a challenge to illustrate. The article explained that since cryptocurrencies are fairly new,  they probably would not be used so much by hotel patrons to pay bills as to help in the transactions of hotel financing.

To represent the infusion of electronic funds into a hotel project, I sketched a large Bitcoin resembling a gold coin, with a USB cable leading from it to a hotel; I drew some people about to connect the cable into a port on the side of the hotel building. I also tried a sketch where two people stood on either side of the world, one depositing money into a slot on the globe and the other retrieving the money on the other side, with a series of connecting points inside the globe.



The editor liked the first sketch idea so I drew it up tighter –


and then transferred the sketch to cold press illustration board, redrew the lines with Prisma pencil and painted it in with acrylic paint washes.. The finished art –


Corporate New Year’s Greeting Card

Kohlhepp Investment Advisors is a family business for whom I have drawn custom cards for a number of years.  They always come up with a timely idea that their clients and colleagues get a kick out of, relating to the prevailing financial climate.

Instead of the standard holiday card, Kohlhepp has settled on doing an annual New Year’s card – which seems apropos to kick off their clients’ new financial cycle.  This year’s card just went out, and focused on an issue that seems to always be creeping into the news lately . . .

kohlheppcard14webI drew this illustration with prisma pencil, painted with watered-down acrylics.  Kohlhepp always provides me with great photos of their team so I can get a good likeness of everyone.  I’m so glad they approved the funny expression on Ed, Sr. (on the chair)!