Science Magazine by Robert Neubecker

Each week I draw a column for Science Magazine- the journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. It’s called Working Life, and it’s a series of essays written by a diverse collection of scientists from all over the world, in all stages and walks of life. I’ve done drawings of fleeing war in Syria, sexual harassment, family life, motherhood, the trials and tribulations of post-doc life, immigration, career paths, you name it. My design team is Marcy Atarod & Holly Bishop, with editor Donisha Adams.

This has been a really fun gig for the last few years. The authors are almost always drawn in the illustrations, and so far they really love it. Fan letters from scientists! Here are just a few. These are always done in two formats, square for the print version, and horizontal for the web. It can be tricky… R.

 Fitting in…

Fitting in…

 Babysitting adult co-workers…

Babysitting adult co-workers…

 Going off the beaten career track.

Going off the beaten career track.

 It’s not always easy to make these work both as a square and horizontal, but it somehow happens, every week…

It’s not always easy to make these work both as a square and horizontal, but it somehow happens, every week…

 Sexism in science. The batch below I’ve left mostly uncaptioned. They should each tell their own story.

Sexism in science. The batch below I’ve left mostly uncaptioned. They should each tell their own story.

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 See? Easy.

See? Easy.

Salt Lake City Main Library Exhibitions is up! by Robert Neubecker

More Library Show! I couldn’t be happier with having my illustration Show in the Children’s Library in this fabulous building in the center of a metro area of two million. The show runs all summer long. Having a show in such an openly public venue, especially a library, is perfect for this work. I focused on the kids books and hung them at 50” centers so the kids could see them easily. Photographing the show was tough- I used my phone, which was not adequate, but through the magic of photoshop I salvaged the exposure somewhat. I had to shoot them at knee level... I'd like to thank Librarian Robyn Green and Assistant Librarian Tressie Rollins for all their help in making this possible, and for hanging all the pictures- no mean feat.  It's a real honor to be here. This is the hub of urban life in Salt Lake, the center of the city. And, as we open, the Pride Festival is just outside in Washington Park. Utah. Wow.

 The editorial wall.

The editorial wall.

 checking labels.

checking labels.

 Tressie fixing labels on picture book wall.

Tressie fixing labels on picture book wall.

 Picture book wall, south.

Picture book wall, south.

 Picture book wall, North.

Picture book wall, North.

 I showed a few original ink drawings- most of the work is Epson prints; digital color

I showed a few original ink drawings- most of the work is Epson prints; digital color

 With Beasty Bath, We showed the whole process from thumbnail dummy, sketches, pencil dummy, watercolor originals, and printed book.

With Beasty Bath, We showed the whole process from thumbnail dummy, sketches, pencil dummy, watercolor originals, and printed book.

 Sorry about the exposure, but you get the idea...

Sorry about the exposure, but you get the idea...

 Editorial.

Editorial.

 Editorial wall. I left out pictures with guns.

Editorial wall. I left out pictures with guns.

 Haring book, of course.

Haring book, of course.

 Wow! books.

Wow! books.

 Linus, the beloved vegetarian T-Rex

Linus, the beloved vegetarian T-Rex

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 From King Louie's Shoes with David Steinberg.

From King Louie's Shoes with David Steinberg.

 90's!

90's!

 From Monsters on Machines with Deb Lund.

From Monsters on Machines with Deb Lund.

 Of Course. L top-R; Chicago Tribune, Summit County Library Card, Fox Searchlight Pictures, Time Magazine.

Of Course. L top-R; Chicago Tribune, Summit County Library Card, Fox Searchlight Pictures, Time Magazine.

 Some shots of the Children's Library lobby and the main library. Nice building.

Some shots of the Children's Library lobby and the main library. Nice building.

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 Glass elevators

Glass elevators

 Thank you! Show runs from June 4th to August 18th. Have a great summer!

Thank you! Show runs from June 4th to August 18th. Have a great summer!

Salt Lake City Main Library Exhibit! by Robert Neubecker

One of the most fun parts of my job as an Author/Illustrator is reading to kids in schools and libraries. The Greater Salt Lake Library system sent out a call for artists to hang shows in their many libraries across the Wasatch Front- I sent them a link to my website and here we are- the children's section of the main library in Salt Lake City. It's a remarkable piece of architecture, and a community center for a growing metropolitan area of over two million people. The show will be up all summer, June 4th to mid August. So this is a big thing. I've concentrated on my thirty plus kid's books, but, having been an outspoken editorial illustrator for a lot of years, there's a lot of that too. Robyn Green, the head librarian, said: "Good. It'll make 'em think."

Below are some pictures of the framing process in my studio. My framing is done by Mary Schawb of Avenues Frames- a to the trade framer in our old 19th century neighborhood in Salt Lake. For the show we found some very affordable ready mades from Dick Blick and Mary cut mats- a lot of these are digital and were printed on my Epson 1430 on heavy matt paper.

 Interior of the Main Library. We'll be hanging the show today (May 31st) and I'll post another entry with exterior shots and the art in place.

Interior of the Main Library. We'll be hanging the show today (May 31st) and I'll post another entry with exterior shots and the art in place.

 The studio, actually, never looked better, so here are lots of pics:

The studio, actually, never looked better, so here are lots of pics:

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We framed north of sixty illustrations.

 Eleanor Early, who'll be starting at SVA in the fall, framing an original. This is a brush & ink drawing that will later have color added on the Mac. I'm including both the drawing and the color print to show the process. Art from "What Little Boys are Made of" Balzer & Bray, an imprint of Harper Collins, 2012.

Eleanor Early, who'll be starting at SVA in the fall, framing an original. This is a brush & ink drawing that will later have color added on the Mac. I'm including both the drawing and the color print to show the process. Art from "What Little Boys are Made of" Balzer & Bray, an imprint of Harper Collins, 2012.

 Packing: New York Times broadsheet from April '18 to show people what it is we actually do here...

Packing: New York Times broadsheet from April '18 to show people what it is we actually do here...

 Sideways poster, three Newsweek cover originals, two L.A. Times Magazine covers, Linus the Vegeterian T-Rex, Wow! Subway! & dartboard.

Sideways poster, three Newsweek cover originals, two L.A. Times Magazine covers, Linus the Vegeterian T-Rex, Wow! Subway! & dartboard.

 My son, Izzy, to show the scale. We built the house fifteen years ago in the fashion of the NYC lofts of my younger days (but with heat). Open and airy.

My son, Izzy, to show the scale. We built the house fifteen years ago in the fashion of the NYC lofts of my younger days (but with heat). Open and airy.

 We included quite a few originals, brush and ink drawings and a lot of watercolors from the pre- digital era.

We included quite a few originals, brush and ink drawings and a lot of watercolors from the pre- digital era.

 Here's George, a Rent-a -Brit who is traveling the Western Hemisphere doing chores in exchange for room & board. He's the son of a friend of Linda Pratt, my literary agent (Wernick & Pratt), and she lent him to me for a week. I couldn't let him go without seeing Utah's redrock country, so we took a three day camping road trip to Mars. That's another post I'll get to just for fun.

Here's George, a Rent-a -Brit who is traveling the Western Hemisphere doing chores in exchange for room & board. He's the son of a friend of Linda Pratt, my literary agent (Wernick & Pratt), and she lent him to me for a week. I couldn't let him go without seeing Utah's redrock country, so we took a three day camping road trip to Mars. That's another post I'll get to just for fun.

 Here's the show announcement. OK. Now we pack up everything and put it up.

Here's the show announcement. OK. Now we pack up everything and put it up.

Texas Library Association Conference with Kay Haring by Robert Neubecker

Our Book, Keith Haring: The Boy Who Just Kept Drawing is up for the Texas Bluebonnet Award from the Texas Library Association. This is a big deal- Penguin Random House flew us in and we signed hundreds of books for schools and libraries all over Texas, from Houston to North Zulch (yes, real). Much graciousness and southern hospitality in Dallas. The final award winner is chosen by the kids from among a short list of children's lit that they read and review over the coming year. Very honored and excited to be on that list! Much thanks to Jessica Garrison , Rachel Wease & Vanessa Carson from Penquin for all their help.

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We gave a talk to two hundred selected Texas librarians and donated a few hundred books to school and public libraries.

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Jessica, Penguin, Leo Espinosa and Junot Diaz's Island Born... thousands of bookies were about to flood in.

 Another big line for signing on the convention floor. Thanks to Kay and Penguin Random House, the TLA and all those Texas librarians!

Another big line for signing on the convention floor. Thanks to Kay and Penguin Random House, the TLA and all those Texas librarians!

Opera News with Trent Johnson by Robert Neubecker

I"ve been working with Trent on Opera News for a few years now. Most of the projects entail a full page or spread with a spot or three. Some of these articles are pretty intellectual, after all, it's opera. The latest published piece is about the morbid introspection of Contemporary American Opera. In the past, Opera would take on the classic themes of morality, good and evil, love gained and lost, greed and betrayal, redemption. Generally outward looking. Contemporary American Opera is much more morally ambiguous, introspective, blurring the line between good and evil. Here are the sketches and the final layout:

     

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The final art.
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This one is adventures in Trumpland; how small opera companies will be decimated by his regime.

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The following are spreads for a piece on The Flying Dutchman:

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This image was for a piece on being gay in the theater during the Eisenhower Administration:

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And, to finish up, here are a piece on funding Italian Opera companies:

  

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Equifax and The New York Times by Robert Neubecker

 I draw for the Your Money column by Ron Lieber in the paper most Saturdays. We've been exploring what the hell happened at Equifax and how to deal with it. The following drawings are from various recent columns addressing the issue. I've included sketches too, as they're often funnier that the ones we ran. Remember, kids, freeze those credit reports.

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  Deleteing Equifax files...

Deleteing Equifax files...

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 The Storm...

The Storm...

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Space Boy and the Snow Monster with Dian Curtis Regan by Robert Neubecker

Space Boy and the Snow Monster is the third in a series of graphic novels for kids written by Dian Curtis Regan. We're published by Boyds Mill Press, Mary Colgan editor & Tim Gillner art director. These were big fun to do- I grew up on comics of every description and was very interested in doing a graphic novel. To get to do three was a real treat. There was an evolution in technique, going from pencils to Wacom tablet, then finally wholly on Cintiq. The second book, Space Boy and the Space Pirates won the Crystal Kite Award 2017 from SCBWI and is a finalist for the 2017 Colorado Book Award. I won that in 2013, Children's Literature, with Jean Reidy for "Time Out for Monsters." This just came out, October 2017...

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King Louie's Shoes with David Steinberg by Robert Neubecker

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     I had a lot of fun with this one. David is a V.P. for animation production over at Nickelodian, and I got to meet Spongebob. It was one of the highlights of my life, the best day ever. This tome is brought to you by Beach Lane Books, Simon & Schuster, under the guidance of the incomparable team of Andrea Welch & Lauren Rille. 

 

King Louie was a very BIG king in all ways but one: He was five-feet-four-inches short. So Louie and his royal cobbler cooked up the perfect high-heeled solution to help Louie appear taller. But after an embarrassing tumble (on the dance floor, no less!) Louie learned that his subjects were loyal no matter how big—or how shrimpy—their beloved Louie might have been. Readers young and old will relate to this silly and sweet story of King Louie XIV—a man who had it all, but still felt small. 

"Neubecker’s cartoon illustrations are bright and full of whimsy. The details of baroque architecture and clothing are depicted in an accessible manner, and the characters are humorous and expressive, especially the baby-faced Louie." - School Library Journal June 1, 2017

"Neubecker... clearly having fun drawing his characters’ Baroque get-ups, portrays the monarch at a humbling height disadvantage compared to the rest of his court, which should win the Sun King instant sympathy with the book’s target audience." - Publishers Weekly May 22, 2017

Fall is for School! by Robert Neubecker

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 My new book! Our brother and sister team from Winter is for Snow are facing the dreaded fall season and....school! Sister is stoked, Bro, not so much...from School Library Journal:

School Library Journal

“Fall is for school!” a jubilant girl shouts while her older brother mourns the loss of summer vacation. The boy whines that school is uncool and too hard, it’s full of teachers and homework. But his sister extols the virtues of nice teachers, fascinating projects, recess, and Halloween parties. Eventually, the boy changes his tune as his sister exclaims, with grown-up wisdom, “We’ll learn, and we’ll be clever./A great big world will open up/and change our lives forever.” The full-bleed digital illustrations are full to bursting with fall colors, as well as an accumulating collection of things the siblings will learn about, from Abraham Lincoln to rocket ships. VERDICT This cheery (rah! rah!) back-to-school selection is a colorful ­addition for school and public libraries.

Keith Haring: The Boy Who Just Kept Drawing with Kay Haring by Robert Neubecker

This was an amazing opportunity. It just came in, another commission. The publisher chose me out of all the illustrators on the planet without knowing any of my shared history with Keith and his era. It was pure joy to work with Keith's sister, Kay Haring, and her loving manuscript. We worked closely with the Haring Foundation to showcase Keith's art, under the excellent guidance of Lucia Monfreid, editor, and with the deft art direction of Jasmin Rubero.

The task was to seamlessly combine my illustrations with Keith's drawings and paintings to tell his life story. It was tricky to showcase the art without cropping or retoucing anything. And we did the best we could respecting Keith's work. I got the advance copy last week and it came out magnificently.  Many, Many thanks to Dial Books for making this possible, and to my lovely agent, Linda Pratt.

From Dial Books for Young Readers (Penguin Random House):

This one-of-a-kind book explores the life and art of Keith Haring from his childhood through his meteoric rise to fame. It sheds light on this important artist’s great humanity, his concern for children, and his disregard for the establishment art world. Reproductions of Keith’s signature artwork appear in scenes boldly rendered by Robert Neubecker. This is a story to inspire, and a book for Keith Haring fans of all ages to treasure.

Praise:

“Neubecker’s colorful illustrations capture the energy with which Keith [Haring] lived his life, and cleverly integrate some of the artist’s original works… Always upbeat, this story is a celebration of art and life.” — Booklist

“Neubecker neatly incorporates Haring’s real pieces into these zesty, bustling, digital-and-pencil illustrations…. Haring’s work pops; Neubecker’s compositions and enthusiastic crowd scenes do it wonderful credit.” — Kirkus

“An enlightening look at the merits of street art and how it allows those who may not ordinarily venture into a museum or gallery to experience and enjoy art….Children will relate to young Haring’s drive to pursue his calling despite naysayers.” —School Library Journal

“Cheerily energetic….Schools with “Picture Person” programs, as well as primary grades art teachers, will want to share this appealing title.” —BCCB

About Kay Haring:

Kay Haring is the younger sister of Keith Haring. She is a wife, mother, writer, hiker, lover of art and the wonders of nature. Kay has spent many years both working and volunteering for nonprofits, in management and fundraising capacities.  

Hardcover
Published by Dial Books
Feb 14, 2017 | 40 Pages | 9 x 11 | 5-8 years | ISBN 9780525428190

 I would have blown out the chalk drawing more, but it wasn't my call. In the book,it draws you in, and being somewhat faint, adds an intimacy.

I would have blown out the chalk drawing more, but it wasn't my call. In the book,it draws you in, and being somewhat faint, adds an intimacy.

 Kay got a Jean- Michael Basquiat crown and I had a Kenny Sharf from my street art collection- I prowled the Village with my Nikon and Kodachrome in the 80's & 90's. I added some of my own stuff on the lamp post from that period, and a couple pics of my rocker friend Holly Beth Vincent of Holly & the Italians. A few references to CB's and some tags, and there you go.

Kay got a Jean- Michael Basquiat crown and I had a Kenny Sharf from my street art collection- I prowled the Village with my Nikon and Kodachrome in the 80's & 90's. I added some of my own stuff on the lamp post from that period, and a couple pics of my rocker friend Holly Beth Vincent of Holly & the Italians. A few references to CB's and some tags, and there you go.

 This looks better in the book- color's better. We had to work with Kay's photos, in spite of the million dollar budgets that children's books have, we couldn't afford to buy rights to any photo of Keith's murals we wanted. The art was different as the Foundation owns the rights- so I designed around what we had and Jasmin and I restored the shot as best we could. I think it came out great. I once worked with J.C. Suares at Push Pin Press. We were doing a trade paperback called "The Great Disasters". I said to J.C." But J.C., the Hindenburg crash only killed 26 people- the Yellow River floods of the 1920's killed hundreds of thousands..." J.C. replied: "A great disaster is whatever we have great pictures of." Just so.

This looks better in the book- color's better. We had to work with Kay's photos, in spite of the million dollar budgets that children's books have, we couldn't afford to buy rights to any photo of Keith's murals we wanted. The art was different as the Foundation owns the rights- so I designed around what we had and Jasmin and I restored the shot as best we could. I think it came out great. I once worked with J.C. Suares at Push Pin Press. We were doing a trade paperback called "The Great Disasters". I said to J.C." But J.C., the Hindenburg crash only killed 26 people- the Yellow River floods of the 1920's killed hundreds of thousands..." J.C. replied: "A great disaster is whatever we have great pictures of." Just so.

 I wasn't at this opening, but everybody heard about it. I added a few people that I like, Klaus Nomi, Ann Magnuson (who I remain desperately in love with-I'll never forget the Lower East Side Ladies Auxiliary from Club '57...) There's Lou Reed and Jeni Muldaur, his bandmate. There's John Sex, Basquiat, Yoko, Grace Jones, and next to Andy, my dear friend Ronnie Cutrone, who worked as Andy's assistant for ten years and died too young. I kinda had to draw Shafrazi, Keith's dealer, although I never forgave him for vandalizing Guernica. Yeah, that Guernica.

I wasn't at this opening, but everybody heard about it. I added a few people that I like, Klaus Nomi, Ann Magnuson (who I remain desperately in love with-I'll never forget the Lower East Side Ladies Auxiliary from Club '57...) There's Lou Reed and Jeni Muldaur, his bandmate. There's John Sex, Basquiat, Yoko, Grace Jones, and next to Andy, my dear friend Ronnie Cutrone, who worked as Andy's assistant for ten years and died too young. I kinda had to draw Shafrazi, Keith's dealer, although I never forgave him for vandalizing Guernica. Yeah, that Guernica.

 This is one of my Haring stats (as in photostat) When I was a kid working at the New York Times, the grownups were all on vacation, and another kid, Lisa Powers, had the art direction of the Op-Ed page for a week. A piece on The Three Mile Island Nuclear Disaster came across her desk and I wanted to call Andy Warhol to illustrate it (hey, why not? it is the Times...) She called Keith instead. He came up with a beautiful set of nuclear themed drawings- something that he was very concerned about. At the Times, photostats were made and the originals returned. Later, the stats were discarded. I kept them. I shared these with the foundation, and the originals, sadly, are lost. I never knew Keith, but I saw him often, and in doing this book, I am absolutely amazed at the quality, breadth and depth of his output in only ten short years. What a treasure he left the world, I hope this book will introduce a whole new audience to it. That's it. I'll get in trouble with the publishers for posting too many spreads, but this is "to the trade", so there. The book comes out Valentine's Day, as a tribute to Keith (Kay's idea).  Robert Neubecker, Park City

This is one of my Haring stats (as in photostat) When I was a kid working at the New York Times, the grownups were all on vacation, and another kid, Lisa Powers, had the art direction of the Op-Ed page for a week. A piece on The Three Mile Island Nuclear Disaster came across her desk and I wanted to call Andy Warhol to illustrate it (hey, why not? it is the Times...) She called Keith instead. He came up with a beautiful set of nuclear themed drawings- something that he was very concerned about. At the Times, photostats were made and the originals returned. Later, the stats were discarded. I kept them. I shared these with the foundation, and the originals, sadly, are lost. I never knew Keith, but I saw him often, and in doing this book, I am absolutely amazed at the quality, breadth and depth of his output in only ten short years. What a treasure he left the world, I hope this book will introduce a whole new audience to it. That's it. I'll get in trouble with the publishers for posting too many spreads, but this is "to the trade", so there. The book comes out Valentine's Day, as a tribute to Keith (Kay's idea).

Robert Neubecker, Park City

Forty Years by Robert Neubecker

  Last spring (2015) marked 40 years as a professional, having had my first illustration commissioned by Steve Heller for the New York Times letters page in 1975, while I was a student at Parsons. Over the years the publishing industry has changed, it's grown and diminished, the web has shown great promise and disappointment, magazines have risen and fallen- My career has been remarkably consistent, I think because my emphasis has always been on storytelling, communicating ideas using a visual language both cultural and personal. The metaphors and symbols might be from popular culture, art history, cartoons, whatever is in the cultural grab bag, but the point of view is personal. I had the excellent opportunity to study under J.C. Suares and Milton Glaser. The print magazine world has contracted since the recession, but illustration continues to flourish in its different forms. The field seems to be reinventing itself. I love seeing what Yuko Shimizu and Edel Rodrigeuz are doing, to name just two. Almost every illustration I do now has a web component and I've been having a wonderful time drawing books for children. I've started doing graphic novels, also for kids. Newspapers, once thought to be the first road kill of the internet, are surviving, and some are doing  quite well. A good deal of my most interesting work comes from them. I still work for the New York Times, and I love reading it online- with art- and opening the big broadsheets on weekends to see the illustrations and photography in print.

Below is a picture from each decade, followed by a bunch of recent work, which was my original intention to post in the first place...

 Late 70's NYTimes. I did Leonard Silk's economics column, two a week, for seven years. This was rapidograph on vellum. I also did sports diagrams every Saturday morning. Free Yankees tickets. Lou Pinella. Reggie Jackson.

Late 70's NYTimes. I did Leonard Silk's economics column, two a week, for seven years. This was rapidograph on vellum. I also did sports diagrams every Saturday morning. Free Yankees tickets. Lou Pinella. Reggie Jackson.

 Newsweek. 80's

Newsweek. 80's

 90's- Immigration BYU magazine.

90's- Immigration BYU magazine.

 LA.Times Magazine Cover, '03 or so.

LA.Times Magazine Cover, '03 or so.

 '05 for Slate.com, after Andre Francois. The Tyco Scandal, where billions dissappeared and executives actually went to prison.

'05 for Slate.com, after Andre Francois. The Tyco Scandal, where billions dissappeared and executives actually went to prison.

 2016- Student debt, when parents cosign- NYTimes.

2016- Student debt, when parents cosign- NYTimes.

 WSJ- Keith Webb art directed this. Always great.

WSJ- Keith Webb art directed this. Always great.

 This was originally an unpublished sketch for Live Happy Magazine, Katherine Finney, AD- it was about resilience. I finished it for a friend who'd just lost her husband in a motorcycle accident.

This was originally an unpublished sketch for Live Happy Magazine, Katherine Finney, AD- it was about resilience. I finished it for a friend who'd just lost her husband in a motorcycle accident.

 The Banality of Racism- Hartford Courant

The Banality of Racism- Hartford Courant

 This was a sketch for Live Happy, about forgiveness & the destructiveness of carrying a grudge

This was a sketch for Live Happy, about forgiveness & the destructiveness of carrying a grudge

 This is the final. I gave Kathryn two options, one where the creature is blue, but also this one, transparent, as a grudge is really just in your head... This was drawn mostly in ink with a crow quill on crummy, bleedy paper. Most of these are done on a Wacom Cintiq.

This is the final. I gave Kathryn two options, one where the creature is blue, but also this one, transparent, as a grudge is really just in your head... This was drawn mostly in ink with a crow quill on crummy, bleedy paper. Most of these are done on a Wacom Cintiq.

 Chicago Tribune, David Syrek, AD. Solitary confinement for kids... Anyone remember Bascove? Reminds me of her. Did a million fat line bookcovers in the 70's...

Chicago Tribune, David Syrek, AD. Solitary confinement for kids... Anyone remember Bascove? Reminds me of her. Did a million fat line bookcovers in the 70's...

 Sketch for Solitary that we didn't use..

Sketch for Solitary that we didn't use..

 This was also for Live Happy, about overcoming disabilities...profiling a wheelchair bound athlete.

This was also for Live Happy, about overcoming disabilities...profiling a wheelchair bound athlete.

 This was for Trent Johnson, Opera News, about bringing more people into the opera. I was playing clean up for someone who'd had trouble with the assignment, something I used to do often- and I had only a day or two to do it. I liked the big Brunhilda, but we went with the crowd instead. Crowds are hard, er, numerous....

This was for Trent Johnson, Opera News, about bringing more people into the opera. I was playing clean up for someone who'd had trouble with the assignment, something I used to do often- and I had only a day or two to do it. I liked the big Brunhilda, but we went with the crowd instead. Crowds are hard, er, numerous....

 Also (above) Chicago Tribune Book Review. A memoir about some not so nice guys who shaped the author's life.

Also (above) Chicago Tribune Book Review. A memoir about some not so nice guys who shaped the author's life.

 This was for Science Magazine, a weekly column I do on first person career stories. This was about a woman scientist fleeing Syria after a brave and prolonged effort to stay. Lot's of fun with Kyle's runny inkers...

This was for Science Magazine, a weekly column I do on first person career stories. This was about a woman scientist fleeing Syria after a brave and prolonged effort to stay. Lot's of fun with Kyle's runny inkers...

 New York Times- this is the Your Money column by Ron Leiber- I do this nearly every Saturday, unless they have great photos (!). This one's about, well, it should be clear. The greatest gift you can give your kid is a debt free college education. Four years at a good private school clocks in at $268,000.00, give or take a nickle.

New York Times- this is the Your Money column by Ron Leiber- I do this nearly every Saturday, unless they have great photos (!). This one's about, well, it should be clear. The greatest gift you can give your kid is a debt free college education. Four years at a good private school clocks in at $268,000.00, give or take a nickle.

 This was for Slate.com. It was on underground pro-anorexia websites. Just a note about Slate. We were started by Bill Gates as the first web only news magazine in 1996. Mike Kinsley from Time was hired as our editor, and Patricia Bradbury, from Newsweek, as the art director. Mark Alan Stamaty and myself were hired as the illustrators. Patricia and I negotiated a good contract from Microsoft- no mean feat- based on WSJ's print rate. Two a week, 1 time use, no sketches, straight to finish (no time). Slate rose and fell with the fortunes of the internet, rates fell, went up, and fell again with the market crash- and I went to one a week. But all that time, I had a wonderful experience working with all of the art directors and editors- Mike Kinsley, Jake Weisberg, Kathleen Kincaid, Vivian Selbo, Rebecca Markovitz, Lori Shen, Holly Allen, Natalie Mathews- and so many others who have been involved over the years. Thanks to you all. I'm on an on-call basis now, not the weekly I did for nineteen years, which is fine- it was an astonishingly long run in our free-lance illustration world and there are other assignments to do, but I wanted to post a tribute to Slate and to all of the people who bring it to life and made it possible throughout it's history.

This was for Slate.com. It was on underground pro-anorexia websites. Just a note about Slate. We were started by Bill Gates as the first web only news magazine in 1996. Mike Kinsley from Time was hired as our editor, and Patricia Bradbury, from Newsweek, as the art director. Mark Alan Stamaty and myself were hired as the illustrators. Patricia and I negotiated a good contract from Microsoft- no mean feat- based on WSJ's print rate. Two a week, 1 time use, no sketches, straight to finish (no time). Slate rose and fell with the fortunes of the internet, rates fell, went up, and fell again with the market crash- and I went to one a week. But all that time, I had a wonderful experience working with all of the art directors and editors- Mike Kinsley, Jake Weisberg, Kathleen Kincaid, Vivian Selbo, Rebecca Markovitz, Lori Shen, Holly Allen, Natalie Mathews- and so many others who have been involved over the years. Thanks to you all. I'm on an on-call basis now, not the weekly I did for nineteen years, which is fine- it was an astonishingly long run in our free-lance illustration world and there are other assignments to do, but I wanted to post a tribute to Slate and to all of the people who bring it to life and made it possible throughout it's history.

Going Digital by Robert Neubecker

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In the last few months I’ve been all digital.  For much of my career I used pen and ink and watercolor, later brush & ink- the rougher the better, with color added digitally- with a mouse!  Winsor & Newton stopped making the 994 series brushes I used a few years ago and I never did find a replacement that I really liked. I scoured the country online and by phone and bought up every 994 that I could find. Eventially, the laquer in the ink breaks them down and they wear out…
     I was tallking to Leo Espinosa one day and he showed me a variety of digital brushes- Kyle Webster’s for starters, and I started using them and exploring what can be done by altering their characteristics and combining effects.
   As always, everything I do starts with problem solving, so the idea behind the image is most important to me with technique supporting the idea simply and directly.
  That’s my editorial approach. Of course, doing a picture book, if the story calls for full blown watercolors, throw the computer out the window and get out the paints.
Usually, It’s somewhere in between.

 This was a back Cover for Live Happy Magazine, a new venture that you'll find in Whole Foods and like stores. I subscribed. We do enough death and disaster.

This was a back Cover for Live Happy Magazine, a new venture that you'll find in Whole Foods and like stores. I subscribed. We do enough death and disaster.

 Death & Disaster department: Urgent books to read this year about the various crises threatening the vary existence of humankind, etc. For Chicago Tribune Book Review.

Death & Disaster department: Urgent books to read this year about the various crises threatening the vary existence of humankind, etc. For Chicago Tribune Book Review.

 This is a combination of brush and digital- the sketch was done with a brush in my sketchbook, and sometimes it's just impossible to capture the energy of the sketch in the final. So, with photoshop, one can just draw on top, leaving the best parts. 'Yelling is the New Hitting", Wall Street Journal.

This is a combination of brush and digital- the sketch was done with a brush in my sketchbook, and sometimes it's just impossible to capture the energy of the sketch in the final. So, with photoshop, one can just draw on top, leaving the best parts. 'Yelling is the New Hitting", Wall Street Journal.

 Here's Vlad. I don't often do caricatures or portraits, but people commission them anyway and Putin's easy. When I worked for Time, I'd just cut out a photo of a head and stick in on a crudely drawn body, the rougher the better. Always thought that was hilarious. This was for Jenny Livengood, art director, National Journal.

Here's Vlad. I don't often do caricatures or portraits, but people commission them anyway and Putin's easy. When I worked for Time, I'd just cut out a photo of a head and stick in on a crudely drawn body, the rougher the better. Always thought that was hilarious. This was for Jenny Livengood, art director, National Journal.

 This was for Slate, and it was a piece about the difficulty of dating when one has a past history of mental illness.

This was for Slate, and it was a piece about the difficulty of dating when one has a past history of mental illness.

 Also Slate, if you've been there, you know this drill.

Also Slate, if you've been there, you know this drill.

 This is for David Syrek, Chicago Tribune. I gave him two options, one with a color background, and one with white. I used to feel awkward about this, but if both options work, choice is good. He knows the printing and the colors on the page. Let the art director direct.

This is for David Syrek, Chicago Tribune. I gave him two options, one with a color background, and one with white. I used to feel awkward about this, but if both options work, choice is good. He knows the printing and the colors on the page. Let the art director direct.

 Slate. Because it's online, I'm going simpler and bolder with Slate, almost icons. This is about the futuristic toilets they have in Japan. When I do presentations for my kids books, I show this (and others) to the children as my day job. They howl.

Slate. Because it's online, I'm going simpler and bolder with Slate, almost icons. This is about the futuristic toilets they have in Japan. When I do presentations for my kids books, I show this (and others) to the children as my day job. They howl.

 This was a piece for UU World Magazine, for the Unitarian Church. Great people. It's about how all women feel threatened by unwanted advances from men, and how hard it is to tell a harmless nuisance from someone really dangerous.

This was a piece for UU World Magazine, for the Unitarian Church. Great people. It's about how all women feel threatened by unwanted advances from men, and how hard it is to tell a harmless nuisance from someone really dangerous.

 Barron's. One of those deadly pieces on changes in mutual fund management. I get these all the time. Challenging.

Barron's. One of those deadly pieces on changes in mutual fund management. I get these all the time. Challenging.

 Here's a tear from the NYT Business section. I do this column every week. Playing with the digital brushes, I'm flirting with more of a sixties look. I've looked at Ben Shahn and other mid 20th century illustrators for their use of bold line and bright color. It's been really fun.

Here's a tear from the NYT Business section. I do this column every week. Playing with the digital brushes, I'm flirting with more of a sixties look. I've looked at Ben Shahn and other mid 20th century illustrators for their use of bold line and bright color. It's been really fun.

 This is from the Times, using dollar collage again, but hopefully in a fresh fun way. I included this because I liked the line quality.

This is from the Times, using dollar collage again, but hopefully in a fresh fun way. I included this because I liked the line quality.

 Older drawing, done of my wife as a birth announcement with the old 994 brush. I do miss it sometimes, especially it's freshness. Digital is slower and more deliberate. To a certain extent, technique determines style, so new ways of drawing are opening up as I explore this new toolbox.  Thanks, RN

Older drawing, done of my wife as a birth announcement with the old 994 brush. I do miss it sometimes, especially it's freshness. Digital is slower and more deliberate. To a certain extent, technique determines style, so new ways of drawing are opening up as I explore this new toolbox.

Thanks, RN