Tuesday, December 7, 2010

My new website is up and running.

Finally my new website is finished ( well mostly ). My new line of rubber stamps are available there and in the future I will have new paintings availabe for purchase there as well.

Stop by and check it out.


Thursday, November 4, 2010

"Cross Roads" oil painting is finished

The " Cross Roads" painting is finished. It is the biggest painting I have done in quiet awhile at 20x30 inches.
It also proved to be a tough one to photograph. The light outside today is terrible for taking pictures and I don't have the room inside to set up a place with good lighting to take them in the studio. Something to add to my wish list. This picture was the best of the bunch  and it has a hazy glare in the bottom right corner.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Cross Roads Oil Painting

Progress! I have most of the painting roughed in now. Still developing the background,

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

New Painting and some News

I know I have been away for awhile. I have been making lots of changes here at the studio and expanding what I do. For a long time I have wanted to combine my love for illustration and story telling with my wildlife art. The trouble has been that my illustration work has always been very different from my fine art work. Even though the same techniques and thought processes go into both types of work I have never been quite comfortable in bringing the two together in one place, a bad idea I picked up somewhere in art school. Something about high and low art. But through some soul searching and encouraging from some wonderful people ( even if they did not know that's what they were doing at the time) I have come to realize what a dumb and uninformed idea that really is.

Art should always be what it is to us as it is to children, a free expression of thoughts and ideas. Kids draw things they love or things they think about, good or bad. They are expressing ideas and emotions. It doesn't matter if they are drawing pokemon, dragons, people, flowers or something that they make up. Whether the drawing of them and their Mom and Dad looks realistic or like three squiggly potatos holding hands it doesn't really matter to them,as long as the people they made it for like it and get the message it carries.

So what does all this mean for my studio? Well it means that I have spent the last few months illustrating and learning to make a fun line of rubber stamps for the studio that we are making entirely in house. A website will be up and running in a week or so that will feature both my illustration work ( rubber stamps, character illustration, illustrated stories, and a blog for rubber stamping ) and my fine art work ( watercolors, oil paintings and drawings ) some sections will be added over time, but new stuff will be added frequently to all sections.

The new painting I am starting has been a bit of a challenge. Not technically, but the concept for it has been evolving for several weeks ( that means I have painted over it and started over several times ). So I went out and did some sketching and took some photos. Today the concept finally gelled into a simple design that I hope will convey a story for myself and others. Here is the sketch for it.

"Cross Roads. A Change in Direction."

Friday, August 6, 2010

More rubber stamp illustrations

I was asked to create a line of stamps for Stamplistic, a local stamping and scrapbooking store. Jennifer, the owner thought she wanted to do something fun with mailboxes. She wasn't exactly sure what so she turned me loose on the idea. After a few sketches this is what we came up with! They are great for dressing up the front of envelopes but they make terrific cards too.
We also made some matching postage border designs to go along with the mailboxes.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Some samples of what I have been up to.

Sorry it has been awhile since I last posted. I have been very busy with some freelance illustration work for Stacy Rich at StacyStamps. I recently completed several pen and ink drawings for her of  some common backyard birds. Two of which are taken from previous paintings. The stamps will be released to the public for sale on September 25th.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Busy, Busy, Busy...

Things are going to be getting very busy around here for the next few weeks! Today I am starting work on a new project. A complete redesign of what Broken Road Studio is. I hope it will be a little bit of some thing for everyone. I will tell you more as the project develops. 

Monday, June 7, 2010

Cliff Swallow Study on Ebay


  I haven't put any miniature paintings up on Ebay for awhile so I thought this little guy would be a good place to get started again.

Here is the link to him on Ebay.

4x5 Cliff Swallow Study (SOLD)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

My way of saying thanks.

"Waiting for You"

   I wanted to find away to say thank you to everyone from OWH's bloghop for all their wonderful comments. So, I am going to post my very first ever Digi stamp design. I know this one is nothing like the eagle, but I wanted give you something that expressed the ideas of summer, home, friendship, the feeling of being missed and Americana all rolled into one simple design. Enjoy.

(This Digi Stamp design "Waiting for You" is free for you to use under the usual Angel company rules; the design is intended for your personal use and not to be redistributed in anyway. Including copying, lending, duplicating, reselling or sharing or reproduction in any way with out express written consent from me Eric Dull. You can make and sell individually handmade and hand colored cards and projects using the above design. But please try to keep my copyright with the image when possible.)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

A funny thing happened at the rubber stamp store.......

  Besides 6'3" 300lb. me wondering ,ok lumbering, around a Stamping and Scrapbooking store. ( Stamplistic in Amherst, Ohio )

   So anyway, here is the story. We had just helped Stamplistic move form their previous location to a new one, just thirty feet away form the old one. A newer and bigger space. Thursday was their first day open after the move and we decided to go see how it looked. So, while the Mrs. was looking at scrapbooking stuff I was looking at flower stamps in the stamp section ( I know very Manly right? ) While checking out the rubber flora I spotted a brochure that had a card with a eagle stamped on it on the cover.

   Now, when you design and illustrate things for various companies you never know when something you worked on might turn up. A sign here, a salesman waving a flyer at you there, the back of the guys shirt ahead of you in line for the bathroom at the county fair. Etc. Regardless of where you see some of your work being used it is still cool. Because usually after you finish something you rarely ever see it again.

   Imagine my surprise when I realized that the eagle on this card was one that I had done for Stacy Rich of Stacy Stamps ,TEN years ago and it was one of the first illustrations I had drawn for Stacy. Who by the way was standing about ten feet away from me at the time waiting on a customer. Stacy works part time at Stamplistic teaching classes and selling cool stuff, when she is not running her stamp business. (or pimping me out to customers to draw a cruise ship template for a high school prom, but that is another story).

   Needless to say the brochure came home with me. After I had read it over I decided to go on line and check out this Operation Write Home thing. It made my day. You see when I am drawing these stamp designs I always wonder what people are going to make with them. Where they are going to end up. What thoughts and feelings they might be used to convey from one person to another. I could not have been prouder of where that little eagle had ended up. Helping people and families thousand of miles part stay in touch with one an other. From places and times that the connection to Home is one of the only things that keeps you going.

   I decided to email OWH to tell them how happy I was to see the eagle stamp was being put to good use. I had no idea who would receive that email, or when, or if I would get a reply. In just a few minutes I had a reply. It was from Sandy Allnock the president of OWH. She told me it was the first card she had made when starting OWH...or, rather, a replica of it since she had sent the original out. She had received a dozen stamped images of that design as a gift from someone. She never actually had the stamp and always wished she could find one so she could make more of these cards.

   Soon Sandy will have a eagle stamp of her very own. And I have great story to share with all of you. By the way the name of that stamp is "Freedom".

   Sandy asked me to participate in her bloghop today by telling you this story. And I gladly accepted. So if you are here for the bloghop here is your next stop, http://www.winkwinkink.com/ .
Sandy's Card
A photo of the original artwork( yep I still have it )

 If you would like to buy a Stacy Stamps eagle stamp go to Stamplistc's website and order one or call them at

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Life sketches

I have been trying very hard lately to carry my sketch book everywhere I go. Now that it has dried out. Here are a few doodles.

This one is at the cafe in town.

  Sketching birds and animals from life can be difficult. They don't like to stay in one place long. So most of what you end up with are gesture drawing. ( drawings for that are more impressions of shape or movement ).

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A few pics form Magee Marsh as promised.

Black Throated Green Warbler

Prothonotary Warbler

Cheastnut Sided Warbler

Gold Winged Warbler

Yellow Billed Cuckoo

Warbling Vireo

Baby Great Horned Owl

Black Crowned Night Heron

Monday, May 10, 2010

Back from the birding trip.

   We had a great time birding even though the weather made it...., lets say challenging. Forty mile per hour winds, rain, wind, lightening, tornado warnings, wind, over night temperatures in the thirties. Did I mention the wind?
   I took lots of pictures. Some of which may actually be good enough to share. I had my sketch book along for the trip and had every intention of sketching anything that would stand still long enough. But while my rain coat kept me warm and dry it would seem that leaving ones pocket unzipped lets rain in and gets what ever is inside of that pocket very wet. If you have never tried to draw on soggy paper, don't, it doesn't turn out so well.
  I will get soom pictures up soon.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Mirgatory Bird Day

We will be heading up to Magee Marsh Wildlife area this weekend to check out all the spring migrants that are passing through. Hopefully I will have lots of sketches and photo to share when we get back.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

More sketches of people

I think the gentleman in this sketch was on to me. I am pretty sure he new I was drawing him. He was people watching at the coffee shop.

This man fascinated me. I wish I had more time to get a few sketches of him instead of this quick one.

When he walked it was with a shuffling gait. All of his other movements were sure and with purpose. It was as though his legs had betrayed him one to many times. It was not that he doubted them, but more that he took them for what they were. remaining confident in the rest of himself.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

New Oil Painting

Life has been kinda hectic again. But I finally found time to finish this painting. It has been bumping around the studio for about a year now. For some reason it kept getting moved aside to make room for something else. Every once in awhile I would pull it out and work on it, just to have it get pushed aside again. It has become a constant companion. Always sitting on its shelf waiting patiently. It became quite comforting to look at while I was on the phone or taking a break from some other project. Now It is finished. In a day or two when all the paint has dried I will take some finished photos of it and begin looking for a good home for it. I think it will be kind of strange around here for awhile with out it staring back at me.


Sketching is the backbone of the visual arts. It is exercise for your creative muscles and your artistic eye. And to tell the truth I have not been doing enough of it. So little in fact that my creative muscles have become Jello ( the green kind with the little marshmallowie things floating in it ) and my artistic is kinda blurry. So I have resolved to get into shape and to post some of my sketches here to keep me honest.

I stopped in at a local bakery/eatery today and sketched up some business men having a meeting.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


I get asked a lot if I can paint other things besides animals and birds. And for some reason people are always shocked that I can. I was recently asked to do a portrait for a friend. Her husband had past away several years ago after a long illness. It was a bit of a challenge in that there were very few photos from when he was healthy. I had to combine several photos from different points in his life. Most were of a candid nature with angles that were not the best for a traditional portrait. After many sketches we settled on this pose and composite of features.

The actual painting was done in dry brush watercolors.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Finished Falcon

Well, here it is finally. It has been a crazy couple of weeks around here. I have some new
have some new projects coming in and I thought I should finish this guy up before he got lost in the shuffle. I usually don't seal or varnish the watercolors but I think I will this one. A coating of a spray varnish should bring up the richness of the warm tones in the background.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Here is a update on the falcon painting. You can see it is much farther along now. The eye, face and beak areas are almost finished. I am working outward from there with less detail to the edges of the board. Where the feathers will blend and fade into the darkness of the background. If you compare this photo with the one from the last post you be able to see a lot of the detail brush work developing. You can also see the ability of the dry brush technique for working back in white lighter, or highlight, colors over the existing layers and washes. Sorry the photo is alittle dark.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Painting part 2

Ok ,so I got a little carried away with painting before I remembered to pick up the camera. Oops. As you can see I have blocked in some of the larger areas of the falcons base colors. Again this is being done with the dry brush technique. Although I am using just a bit more water than I would for the more detailed work. The reason for this is that I am trying to cover a larger area more quickly and to keep the paint a bit looser to develop a underlying texture for the more detailed work that will be layered above it.

In this detail you can see both the blocked in area of color on top of the background and the more detailed brush work for the feathers and eye. There are many different types of brush strokes that can be used with dry brushing watercolors. I generally stick with a daubing stroke and cross hatching. I will also using a stippling stroke in tight areas or for shading. If you look closely you can see examples of all three of these in this detail.

Monday, February 1, 2010

A new painting in the works.

Today I started a new painting of a falcon. I wanted it to be a portrait but I also wanted it to have a weathered, textural feel to it. Something like what you would imagine you might find in a 18th century explorers journal.
As I coated the the board with the background color I realized this would be a good piece to show the how the dry brush technique is different to the more common wet techniques and to some extent how they might be combined.

The background itself is a combination of dry brush, wet washes of paint and the spattering of water on to the dried paint below. The base coating of paint was a relatively wet wash of Vandyke brown paint with a medium sized flat brush. When that was dry I came back with the same brush with all most all of the water squeezed from it, leaving just enough to allow the paint to flow off the brush and on to the board. If your brush is to wet it will loosen the layer underneath causing the new and old paint to bleed together. Or worse causing the layer beneath to "lift" leaving a hole in your painting allowing the paper or board to show through.

Because I wanted a rough textural background I alternated between long and short strokes in a random pattern using the Vandyke brown and Payne's grey. When this layer was dry I flicked water onto the surface and waited a minute or two letting the drops of water begin to lift the paint of the top most layer. I then took a dry flat brush and brushed over the drops of water soaking them up and distorting them at the same time. I applied one more spattering a water and blotted them off with a paper towel. Below is a sample area of the painting.You can see the both the streaked brush strokes and the spots lifted out by the water.

Here you can see where I have started to layer in the falcon. Now I am using relatively small round brushes again just wet enough to let the paint follow. As the work progresses I will post some detailed shots of the layering process.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Finished dogwood painting

The dogwood painting is finally done. It was fun. The white flowers were a bit of a challenge with the dry brush watercolors, but in the end they came out just as I had wanted them. I used a lot of glazing layers in them to give them a soft glow. I changed the positioning of the sparrow slightly giving him a more natural perch from the original sketch.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Moon Light Wolf

Well here it is, my first new painting of the new year. He was inspired by all the snow we have had here latley. It's a miniature just 3.5 x 2.5 inches. I included a penny for scale.