Monday, November 13, 2006

Trailblazers & Trendsetters: Art of the Stamp

On Nov 16th I have the great honor of having my work appear in a year long exhibition at The National Postal Museum of the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC, entitled Trailblazers & Trendsetters: Art of the Stamp.

Originally the images that were to appear were the Mickey, Donald and Goofy image from the Art of Disney:Friendship pane and the Lady & the Tramp image from the Art of Disney:Romance pane. However, I was asked by the kind folks at the Postal Service if I would submit my preliminary sketches for the two images because they had decided that my work would be amongst a few select artists to have our work displayed in a case as opposed to having it hang in the gallery.

Needless to say I was thrilled and submitted all that I had (I keep everything!) and it turned out that they preferred to show all the work I sent them regarding the MD&G image (so L&T is out, sorry folks!)

In this post you will see some of the steps that were taken to create this image, starting from my initial character sketches and where I started to piece them together. You will also see how they evolved and that Mickey basically is the only character to have the same look from the start. Donald and Goofy were changed to have a more antique feeling and I think they fit the look we were going for perfectly. You will also see the color rough which is very similar to the final and then the actual stamp image as it appeared when printed.

If you are in DC please stop by and see the show, it is free admission and the website for further information is below.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

"You can be a BARBER again!"

In the story "Sweeney Todd: the Demon Barber of Fleet Street" Sweeney has been wronged by the corrupt Judge Turpin who (fifteen years earlier) raped his wife, stole his child and finally sent him to jail in Australia. When this happened his neighbor Mrs. Lovett took Sweeney's razors and kept them thinking " Who knows? The poor silly blighter might be back again someday and need 'em!"

In this scene Mrs. Lovett informs Mr. T (as she calls him) that he doesn't have to resort to living in the sewer or the plague hospital upon his return but can in fact be a barber again. She has no idea what she has started!

Friday, September 29, 2006

"Give Up Yer Aul Sins"

One of the best animated shorts EVER!

A little girl retells the story of John the Baptist. The audio track is actually from the 1960s--a very battered tape recording of the children retelling bible stories made by school teacher, Margaret Cunningham, of her inner city Dublin primary class.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Photos from the stamp event- FINALLY!

I would normally not post photos of myself, but I thought these were kind of fun. These are images from "The Art of Disney- Romance" stamp event around Easter time. I finally downloaded the pictures and thought I should put them up. The event coincided (as some of you may remember from my post around that time) with the International Flower and Garden show in EPCOT center. Large replicas of the stamp images were made out of flowers and were unveiled during the ceremony. I hope these pictures show you even a little of how magnificent they were. Sadly they were disassembled right after the ceremony was over and no one really got to enjoy them. The other shot is of me and my gorgeous nieces with Tony and Lady & the Tramp. I was so thrilled to have my whole family together for this event . The last pic is of me getting a trim for the festivities in the barber shop on Main Street the day before. Needless to say they go a little to far with the "show".

I don't think they get many adults.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Disney Dollar Concepts

When I took over as chief illustrator for The Disneyland Resort, one of my jobs was to design new illustrations for "Disney Dollars". I was excited about the project because I remember when they came out (I was a child visiting Walt Disney World when they were released) and thought it would be a great time to do something different other than just using portraits of Mickey,Minnie, Donald, & Goofy as they had used for so long. Even the management showed excitement for a change and was happy to see something new,and approved everything I sent along for a concept.

Images were chosen and we were going to highlight Fantasia and Fantasia 2000 (It was being released that year) and I thought I did some concepts worth looking at. In the end, one week before the images had to go to the US Mint to be printed (Yes they are actually printed at the Mint and are considered legal tender) the idiots I worked for (Yes, they were two of the stupidest people I ever met) decided the illustrations were too avant-garde and might not be collectible enough and I had less than one week to redesign them from start to finish using portraits Mickey, Donald and Goofy.

Oh Well........Anyway- Here are some of the original concepts

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Royalty at the Beach!

When I was at Disney I was asked to do some sketches of what the Princesses would look like dressed to go to the beach. I recently came across a couple of them, and I thought I would post them considering the idea never went anywhere. It was fun to modify their costumes I must admit. Please keep in mind they never got past the rough drawing stage so excuse the overall crudeness.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

"His hands were quick,his fingers strong..... stung a little, but not for long. And those who thought him a simple clod were soon reconsidering under the sod. Confined there with a friendly prod, from Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street."

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Sweeney Redesigned

I have to be honest , I was not truly happy with my Sweeney design. As a character on his own he was scary and skeletal, but I think I overshot. I decided to set the story further back in time (the early 19th century) and to make him more of a man than a monster. He relates better now to my Mrs. Lovett and will be much more fun due to his wig and fancier clothes. Feel free to share your thoughts.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

"He kept a shop in London town...

...of fancy clients and good renown. And what if none of their souls were saved? They went to their maker impeccably shaved.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

" His skin was pale, and his eye was odd....

...He shaved the faces of gentlemen who never thereafter were heard of again. He trod a path that few have trod, did Sweeney Todd, the demon barber of Fleet street."

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Mrs. Lovett

Here she is in color. I hope you all like it.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Don't eat the Meat Pies!!!!

I have always wanted to illustrate a version of "Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street". With the hiatus from school and my newest set of stamps for Disney finished, I gave it a go.

Here is one of my character designs for his partner in crime, Mrs. Lovett. By the way...If you don't know what's in her lovely pies.....You will have to find out!

I will be doing these in color as well.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Further drawings from Florence

The wonderful part about being there this year was I knew where to go and how to get around real easily. I also knew where the best material would be.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Italy once more

The guy on the bottom was flipping through postcards.

The woman with the purple tank top was sitting in the Rivoire cafe with her husband. He noticed me painting her and came over to see it. He started to scream to his wife, "Cest tois! Cest tois! Cest tois!" It was very funny .

She was not amused.

Monday, July 03, 2006

More from Italy

Here are some more.

I would either sit in a cafe or in a square and just observe. One of my favorite places is the Piazza Della Signoria. I would sit below the famous Cellini statue of Perseus holding the head of Medusa and draw the people looking up . More to come.

Back from Italy!

I just got back from Italy the other day (I was there for a month- hence no postings!) and here are some of the drawings I did while I was there. I have lots more and they will be posted soon, just thought I would get some up now. Glad to be back home.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Jarrod Gecek.... a very talented student of mine. Please check out his new website:

Thursday, May 25, 2006

An angry lady

Don't know why she was so bitter.....she just was .

Monday, May 15, 2006

Monday, May 01, 2006

A Lady

After all the naked people it was time for something a bit more refined. I was just doodling a face and she had a sweet quality to her. So this is my Sunday night homage to Gibson.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

More Naked People!

I have no idea why everyone is naked these days, just makes me laugh.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Sunday, April 09, 2006


Happy Spring to Everyone!

Friday, April 07, 2006

The Art of Disney: Romance

On Friday April 21, 2006 the newest set of stamps that I have illustrated for The Walt Disney Company and The US Postal Service will be issued. This year the ceremony will be held in Walt Disney World (the past ceremonies have been held in Disneyland). As far as I know, it will be at 9:30 AM at Epcot Center and will kick off the International Flower and Garden show there. Large topiaries of my the art will be sculpted for the event.

The characters were all cropped for the stamps, but they were painted full figure. Alas, some of the nicest parts of the images have wound up on the cutting room floor. I will post the full images on here later so you can see what they looked like. I have a feeling these will be pretty popular come wedding season!

Hope you like them, and better yet I hope you buy them!

Patrick Costa

Patrick Costa is a wonderful animator and Arist. Please check out his great work!