5A Riverview Drive, Kingston, Ontario

It’s no secret that I’m a horribly nostalgic guy. When I’m creating my posters or sketching my little characters it feels like it could be 1983 all over again. I was 6, sitting at the top of the stairs and drawing on all the typewriter paper in the house. From ’80 to ’85 my family lived on the military base in Kingston, Ontario.

Every few months I log into Google Earth to look at the old neighborhood. Trees that are still there, parking lots me and my friends would drive our BMXs through, tracing my walk from home to the nearby Lundy’s Lane Elementary School. Our time in Kingston was one of the best of my life. We had so much fun.

Feeling a bit nostalgic this morning, I dropped into Google Earth to have a look at the old house. To my surprise and sadness, our house along with all the others on the block had been torn down in recent months. Couldn’t believe it. In my head I figured that house would last forever. Big and strong. I had planned on making a trip to Kingston to walk around the neighborhood and re-trace my walk to school which I hadn’t done in 27 years. Guess I should have gone sooner. Geez, I can still hear the distinctive sound the cupboard doors made when they closed.

So this post is for you, 5A Riverview Drive, Kingston, Ontario. There’s no way I’ll ever forget you.

TERMINATOR 2: JUDGMENT DAY poster

Here we go, an officially sanctioned movie poster for one of my favorite sci-fi/action movies of all time: TERMINATOR 2: JUDGMENT DAY.

In all honesty, I’ve been wanting to design this poster since I first saw the movie in 1992 when I was 15. I absolutely loved the design of those Endo-skeletons, probably my favorite piece of cinematic ”monster” design ever to appear onscreen. As per usual, when the movie ended I doodled the metallic skull design on a piece of typewriter paper. Wish I still had it.

So, when the top brass at Mystery Box notified me that they wrangled an official deal to do a T2 poster I was pretty excited. I knew that skull would be front and center. Here is a scan of my initial concept sketch and the first digital mock-up as I figured things out.

A bit of a back story. If you are a frequent visitor to my blog you’ll know that I’ve been chasing movie poster design for about a year now. Signalnoise has had it’s ups and downs in terms of making these available to the public, several will never see the light of day in terms of sale. A few incidents happened along the way that knocked us back, but the designs still exist which is ultimately what counts.

But, Mystery Box has been persistant in hammering at this idea for months now and things are snapping into place. We’ve inked a few deals to do some movie posters all official, titles you have definitely heard of, the first of which being this T2 poster. This one will be moving into production real soon and we have a special variant edition planned. Man, can’t wait. This one will be available via the Mystery Box storefront once live. Once again, we’ve teamed with the kind gents at the Prince Charles Cinema for their screening of TERMINATOR and TERMINATOR 2 on August 29.

Be sure to follow Mystery Box on Twitter to keep up on all the latest releases from me and the other artists. There will be some fun stuff coming down the pipe soon. Watch this space as we bring the TERMINATOR 2 poster through the printing process.

The Design Evolution of Mario

Growing up I would draw my favorite cartoon characters all the time. I’d re-draw stuff from newspapers, cereal boxes, comic books … I would even record cartoons from television to pause on a certain frame to draw. Most of these characters were part of an established franchise, but one little guy stood out as we all watched him evolve from a blocky little hero to fully rendered 3D. Everyone’s favorite plumber: Mario.

I always cite Mario as one of my favorite character designs. Nintendo took great care in tuning his image from way back in 1981 when he first appeared in Donkey Kong, keeping all of his iconic elements intact. Cap, coveralls and mustache. All basic shapes. I’m sure marketing types came along who wanted to “re-design Mario to capture a new hipper audience”, but Nintendo stayed true to their little hero despite the advancements in technology and gameplay. I sure respect that.

So I put this post together as a point blank documentation of his design evolution. There are zillions of Mario games out there but I wanted to only show the main titles that advanced his design, so don’t get on me for omitting Paper Mario or the RPG, you nerds.

So this one is for you, Mario. Keep slinging those shells and bustin’ up those Goombas. “Letsa go!”

GUM CARDS: Supplies arriving

Since the GUM CARDS fundraising effort came to a (successful) close, I’ve been hard at work gathering all the little bits and pieces necessary to ship out the GUM CARDS once I receive them. The Signalnoise HQ has been filling up with boxes full of mailers, zip-locks, top-loader card cases, buttons and stickers. Can’t wait to get all this gear into action.

On the printing front, all the files have been prepped and shuffled off to Mama’s Sauce down in Orlando so they can begin their print wizardry.

Just a small update to keep everyone up to date. Everything is moving forward and in the coming weeks the HQ will be ablaze with the shipping process. Big days ahead. Remember to follow the Gum Cards Twitter and check out the official site for all the latest news.

GUM CARDS: $5,303 Raised

The final numbers are in. Through your generosity and support, the GUM CARDS fundraising effort has raised a whopping $5,303. Amazing. When I launched this project a month ago I really had no idea what would happen. It started as a fun, silly little idea. Something I’d collect if they existed. But here we are with a successful funding campaign facilitating everything and more to move forward.

This post is for everyone who helped me out this month. You know who you are. Your tweets, messages, posts, comments, pledges and encouragement kept this thing going and I’m hard at work over here getting all the little pieces together. The cards are in production and will be mailed out as soon as they are in my hands. Huge thank everyone.

The adventure starts now, gang.

GUM CARDS: Final Day of Fundraising


Here we are, the final day of the GUM CARDS fundraising effort. What a heck of a month this has been. Over in the Signalnoise HQ I’ve been holed-up creating designs for cards, goodies, web graphics and everything else needed to keep the train moving. And out there on the web all of you have been lending your support through tweets, pledges, blog posts and general encouragement. Just, wow.

As I type these words we have 17 hours remaining as we sprint to the finish line. The project has already been successfully funded but every little bit counts, meaning I can push the subsequent cards into production. As it stands, the Aaron Draplin and Johnny Cupcakes cards are being printed now with the Stefan Sagmeister card close on their heels. Everything is moving, gang.

So, if you’ve been waiting to pledge and secure the first 2 GUM CARDS, now is the time to act. Swing over to the Indiegogo fundraising page to see how you can help. We’re down to the wire and this funny little project has grown far beyond all expectation. I’ll be working hard to make it count. Thanks so much everyone.

GUM CARDS: Live Broadcast today

As i type this post we have 43 hours remaining on the GUM CARDS Indiegogo fundraising effort. We reached the goal a couple of weeks ago but I’m still running hard as I can toward the finishing line as the more we raise, the more cards I can move into production straight away. Down to the crunch!

So this afternoon, Tuesday the 7th at 2pm EST there will be a special GUM CARDS live broadcast. Since the project launched quite a lot has happened as I created more cards and materials to support the GUM CARDS experience, so the broadcast today will serve as a big summarization on the last month cover all the details. Along with the story, I’ll discuss the print process ramp-up and a few other fun ideas I want to incorporate into the project as it goes. After all the formalities, I’ll open the floor to a Q&A session with the audience. Possible laughs!

To re-iterate all the official GUM CARDS links, here we go:

• GUM CARDS on Indiegogo
• GUM CARDS Official
• GUM CARDS Store
• GUM CARDS on Twitter
• GUM CARDS on Facebook

I’ll be sure to give everyone the heads up on Twitter when the broadcast today kicks off. See you in a few shorts hours!

GUM CARDS: Comic book ad and Broadcast

Since I came up with the GUM CARDS idea I’ve been thinking about the myriad of stuff I wanted to design around it to make the entire experience richer. One of the things I wanted to create was an advertisement as if it appeared on the back of a comic book in 1986. So I made one, inspired by old Lego and Nintendo advertisements from when I was a kid. Big names. Small cards.

So a bit of news. The clock is ticking down to the end of the GUM CARDS Indiegogo fundraising. As of next Wednesday it will be done, effectively wrapping up phase one of the project. So if you were planning on pledging but haven’t gotten around to it yet, time is running short. Cut in line to secure your GUM CARDS.

GUM CARDS Live Broadcast

A lot has been happening since I kicked off the GUM CARDS project. 3 new cards have been revealed, funding goal has been met and production has begun. But the easiest way to discuss all of this stuff is live. So this coming Tuesday (the 7th) I’ll be doing a second special GUM CARDS SNBC broadcast discussing everything about the project. This will be the day before the funding period ends, so if you want to know more about GUM CARDS be sure to tune in live. I’ll tell stories, show some goodies and answer questions live.

Once again, a big thanks to everyone who has supported and encouraged the project. You have all made this experience incredible, and we’re just at the beginning.