In the Outer Darkness


I’m upset.  Maybe I’ve become sensitive about my art and years of effort I’ve put in, 26 years for A-Kon.  Akon25 Aki OnSite sml But the seemingly off hand dismissal of the value of my work by the current A-Kon staff has really upset me.  It would seem that the Geishabots are no longer desired, it time for a change from the iconic robot girls, and the work for this year’s A-Kon has been given to others without notice to me.  Oh, they will be happy to use anything I give them and use it for any shortfalls in art coverage. Plus they will still let me have my artist alley table for this year.
This has made me a tad bit upset, doing the work for A-Kon has ment so much to me.

Why is it that I can have fans, followers, and contacts with other artists and SF writers, and be recognized for my skill and imagination by folks all over the world, but still get little recognition in my local area and by the convention I’ve done work for the last 26 years, when I’m remembered at all.   A rep from a USAF intell unit can find a way to contact me to do a morale t-shirt( and they were so stoked to have me do the work), but A-Kon’s staff cannot…even though they have my info.

I have always felt like an outsider in regards to DFW’s cliquish fandom, like a comet that comes in once a year, produces a show, and then plunges back into the outer darkness.
It would seem that the comet is now cast off…into the outer darkness…the light dimmed…far from home.

The only thing that keeps me from completely despairing is that I do have fans and the attention of SF professionals, people that consider what I do as valuable and worthwhile.  It still hurts that I have to find such affirmation so far from home.

I must work. I must do the work for myself.

Still…I have a hollow feeling inside.

Canned Chunk CHORF


When Brad Torgersen came up with the term “CHORFs” to use instead of  SMOFs, my first impression was something that got upchucked.  Being such an upchuckworthy term for such upchuckworthy folks with upchuckworthy ideas, a drawing was inspired.  Unfortunately the BIG MOVE got in the way, along with all the unpacking of the studio, and of course the A-Kon anime convention.  But today I finished the Photoshop colors and effects, so fellow Sad Puppies enjoy…well, sort of…


Defenders of the nail house


Brad R. Torgersen

We’re about a week out from the release of the final ballot results, for the 2015 Hugo awards. These results will determine which picks are available for your choosing when it comes time for you to cast your ballot. Best Novel, Best Short Story, etc. Already, the critics of Sad Puppies 3 have been laying the groundwork for de-legitimizing SP3. To include statements which completely misunderstand the point of Sad Puppies. Some of it is innocent. Not everybody’s had time to do a deep-dig on the history of Sad Puppies, nor to be able to discern that each iteration of the project has tended to assume its own personality. What they’re hearing about SP3 is probably hear-say from friends, and much of that is at least one to two years out-of-date. And even then, many of the “facts” put forth, are demonstrably wrong.

But other commentary is not so innocent…

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My FANifesto


I very much agree with Brad’s sentiment , and that’s why I got involved with the whole Sad Puppies movement. I want to help “save the soul” of Science Fiction, at all levels, and not let it become the dull, gray, and warped tool of the politically correct SMOFs , Social Justice Warriors, and would be social engineers. I want to preserve it’s artistry, fun, freedom of expression and true diversity of ideas.

Brad R. Torgersen

Having read my friend Rob’s delightful piece this morning, I thought I’d follow; with a few thoughts of my own.

I am a fan.

I never needed to go to cons to prove it.

I also never had to pass a fan knowledge or political litmus test.

I became a fan the moment Apollo and Starbuck first hit their TURBO buttons and blasted out of the Galactica’s launch tubes.

I became a fan because the crew of the Phoenix daily saved Earth from the plots of Zoltar, and planet Spectra.

I became a fan because Lando said “Punch it!” and Luke brazenly challenged Vader thus: “You’ll find I’m full of surprises!”

I became a fan because Admiral Kirk looked into the viewscreen and taunted, “I’m laughing at the superior intellect.”

I became a fan because Lynda Carter captivated, as Princess Diana.

I became a fan because Erin Gray was…

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Black Kat RaceQueen art process Part 2


This the second part of sharing my work process. At this step I’ve added the base colors after cleaning up the line art and putting on her other hand. I use a good sized sketch pad and the whole image doesn’t fit on the scanner, so I have to scan the image in sections and put it together during clean-up. Her base colors are done, and since she’s going to be wearing white vinyl Go-Go boots I’ve left them white. Tones and shading are next.…

Black Kat RaceQueen art process Part 1


I set up the “Artraccoon’s Hidden Fortress”, waaaaaaay back in 2012, and didn’t do anything with it. Well, Today that changes, and what better way to make that change than to share my series of “art process” posts that I been doing over on Facebook and Deviant Art.  As time goes on expect more postings on artwork I’m doing, SF in general, my support of the “Sad Puppies” Hugo campaign, and the occasional position statement.

I thought that I’d share with everyone a step-by-step process of my way of working. There’s nothing great or really special about how I do things, but it might help some starting artists, inspire others, and be of general interest to folks to see what’s all involved.  The piece I’m doing is of an SF racing spacecraft with the team’s race queen sitting on the craft’s nose. Since she’s the focus, I’ll work on her first. I do a rough in BiC pen of the whole scene( on the left ) and from that I make a larger image in pencil, work out the details, then ink the image( on the right ). The line art gets cleaned up in Photoshop and readied for the next step.   I started posting this series at my Facebook page, and that’s where they will appear first…so pay me a visit, and Like whatcha see!  :)

The Artraccoon at WordPress


The Artraccoon has arrived at WordPress to start a blog.  Not that this is a world impacting event or anything, but a way for me to share my views, activities, and interests with those that may be interested.

I’m a illustrator known mostly for his artwork for the A-Kon anime convention’s badges and staff t-shirt…aka “The Badge Art Guy”, something I’ve been doing for a long, long time. I’m an “old school anime” kinda artist that prefers science-fiction, fantasy, and pin-up type subjects. There are other areas of art that interest me as well besides “anime & manga” subjects, and I’ll be sharing some of intrests as well will y’all.  I’m a Texan (naturalized since 1970), a history nut, a geopolitics junky, book horder, and a fan of science and the study of nature.  My politics run to the Right( so far to the right, that any more so and I’d be driving around in a black van ranting over a loudspeaker),  I have a love for Western Civilization and protecting Judeo-Christian values.  My roomate is Togo, a wolf hybrid named for a Japanese admiral from the Russo-Japanese War, he’s very sweet and very spoiled.  My home quarters a whole army…in 6mm scale…and it keeps growing.  Of course I’m an SF fan/nerd, collect & build models, and as said earlier hord books…anime books, history books, science books, comic books, manga, military books, and art books. I play and do work on role playing and war games, but not too much into computer games( but I love “Command & Conquer” & “Panzer General”).

This blog will be a place for me to share whats going on with my art, my interests, my opinions, and perhaps at times be my “black Uyoku van” from which to rant from.