Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Hey everyone.  So I've finally made it so my website can have a blog of it's own, so like all things, it's time for an end (of this blog).

If you'd like to still follow me, please go over to the brand new Rick Kitagawa blog here.  Thanks for reading and I'm not taking this blog down, so if you ever want any archives of stuff, it's all here for your amusement.

Rock on and see you over at the other blog!  Thanks!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Siren's Call

So I'm working on my own little comic project called "The Siren's Call."  I hope to publish it by APE in a split-feature with a yet-untitled work by Eve.  Anyway, I figure I'll post maybe 1/4-1/3 of the comic online as it comes out as a sort of a preview.  These may or may not be the final pages, as while I'm posting these, there are a few panels I may need to fix, and I'm thinking I might have to change fonts to something more legible at a small size.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Monster updates

So I have been (as of late) a bit unsuccessful in doing the 30-Day Monster Girl Challenge, but I'm back on the bandwagon.

So far I'm on Day 9 - Demon, and I finally managed to do a piece I'm actually happy with.  Granted, the rest I've been hammering out as really, really, loose sketches, and I actually took a bit of time with this one and am glad I did.

Others that I don't absolutely hate:




I think while I want to keep practicing my more realistic, concept-arty style so I can get better at it, I really do enjoy this looser, more graphic approach as seen in the Demon sketch.  Eh, perhaps if I ever get as fast doing more rendered stuff as I am with the graphic stuff, I'll make the switch over.

In other news, I did another illo for the M+S blog which I'm pretty pleased with:

And I'm working on a new comic idea (titled  "The Siren's Song"), hopefully in time for Zine Fest, as well as some new tie designs (maybe in time for APE), and a new shirt idea or two. Yay!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Some new work, life update

Hey everyone.  So it's been a busy past few months (isn't it always) and I apologize for anyone who ever checks this that there have been no updates recently.

Anyway, I'm working on my application for a residency program here in SF, which I'm really excited about, and I'm also just working on producing more work for the Halloween show at Big Umbrella Studios.  Hells yes.

Spectrum Live was pretty cool, and it was nice to try a road show for a change.  It makes they much less scary, and some of the advice given during the panels were awesome.  It sucked that we just barely made booth back, so it was like we just went as attendees, but a lot of people didn't even make booth fee back, so I guess you have to count your blessings.

Anyway, I've been fortunate that I've been able to do a lot of live painting recently, both at SF RAW showcases as well as Hyphen's 10 year anniversary party.  I think I got a hook up to paint live at the Power to the Peaceful concert later on, which would be pretty awesome, and I'll be live painting for Urban Bazaar's 2 Year Anniversary doing a painting demo.  Fun!

Soo, here is some new stuff I've been working on. Yay!

I have a lot more acrylic paintings that I still need to photograph (about 5-7) so hopefully I'll get that taken care of soon.  Huzzah!

Also, I'm working on a visual development project with Eve.  It's super exciting and I feel really fortunate to have a lot of interesting projects to keep me busy over the next few months!

Oh yeah, and I'm working on a Marketing for Artists book!  Crazy!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

New work! huzzah!

So I finally updated my website with a bunch of new images, and since I've been painting like a madman for Spectrum Live, I've got 8 new paintings and a few illustrations up.  You can check it out here: www.rickkitagawa.com.

I've also included a few of the images here for your viewing pleasure.

"It's In the Blood (C.K.)"t - acrylic on canvas board 

"Silver Tongued (I Didn't Lie)" - acrylic on canvas board

"What Did You Bring Me? (I Want It Now)" - acrylic on canvas board

To see more, head over here!

Friday, April 20, 2012


So I'm experimenting with this new style, primarily of people's face melting off.  This piece is going up for a charity auction.  How grand!

Also, I'm sorta extremely exhausted from this week of tons of deadlines happening right now.

Okay, back to work.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012


It's been a long last few weeks, and most nights I don't get to bed before 3:30 am, and these past few nights have been 4:45-5am nights.  Ug.  

ANYWAY, a few things:

1.  Happy birthday Eve!  
2.  Happy 7 Year Anniversary Eve!  Looking forward to many more adventures to come!
3. I'll have my art up in Bluejay Cafe (Divis and McAllister...right across from Big Umbrella) as of tomorrow afternoon (I think).
4. You should check out this WritersCorps event that I'm organizing!  March 15th at the Contemporary Jewish Museum (Mission @4th) from 6:30-7:30pm.  Best of all, it's free!

Cool, brain not working now.  Going to sleep.

Saturday, February 25, 2012


Hey all.  Here is a super short flash fiction piece I wrote for the creative writing class I'm taking.  The assignment was to make a 1-page story.  Hope you enjoy it!
Edit: Plus, an illustration!


The swollen meat pie sat in front of me and the sweet smell sickened me.  My stomach twisted itself into a ball and I held my arms and clenched my teeth, fighting down the mounting bile.  My eyes began to water, and my father smirked.

“It’s time to embrace your heritage, my son.”  His hand fell upon my shoulder like a boulder, and my resolve weakened.  “Don’t worry.  It was no one that you knew.”

I stared into my father’s silver eyes, and I felt my will disintegrating.  I suddenly found my hands clenching the knife and fork.  I turned away from my father and looked down towards the pie.  I could feel a primal urge overtaking me, and I began to salivate.  

“No!”  I slammed down the cutlery.  “I may be of your blood, but I am not your son!”  

My father laughed a cold, hard laugh.  “We shall see, won’t we?”  

With that, he abandoned me in the tower room, locking the door as he left.  I sat up and walked over to the six-foot high windows and pulled back the velvet drapes.  The snow thrashed outside, and as I peered down into the inky blackness, I wondered how much snow would be needed to break my fall from such a height.  I flung open the latch and  the icy wind forced its way inside, causing me to gasp in shock.  The roar of the wind was deafening. I took another look back at that steaming, vile pastry, and I clutched my chest. I turned back towards the window and stepped towards it.  

It couldn’t have been more than an hour before my father returned.  As he entered, he surveyed the open window.  He closed the window, and I saw him smile.  I silently cursed him and the blood that ran in my veins.  He slowly walked over to me and took the empty plate from my hands, every single, succulent, delicious morsel having been licked clean.  I wiped some caramelized blood from my lips, and despite it all, couldn’t help myself from wanting more.  

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

RAW Artist show = Contest!

Hey all.  So I'm in charge of selling 20 tickets to the art extravaganza that's coming up on Thursday, February 16th.  I'll be showing some new paintings, selling some ties, and generally hanging out at 103 Harriet which is the main single floor of 1015 (you know, the big nightclub where the Handmade Ho Down was?)

ANYWAY, so I need to sell these tickets by Sunday at midnight (PST), and since I feel a little bit weird asking you to pay to come see my art (granted, there's gonna be music and DJ's and dancing and tons of great paintings and photographs and body painting and other stuff), I've decided that I want to make it worth your while ON TOP of just checking out a really cool event.

So.  I'm holding a raffle for everyone who buys a $10 ticket.  Note: buying ahead of time not only qualifies you for the contest, but also saves you $5 if you decide later to buy at the door.  Hell, you don't even have to go to the event (although I'd love to see you) if you don't want to.  If you want, you can also donate your spot back to me and I can offer it to people who would want to go but can't afford it.  Whatever, anyway, here's the deets.

1.  Buy your ticket to the event HERE by Sunday, February 11th by 11:59pm, PST. Make sure my name is in the drop-down field that says "Support your artist."

2.  Email me your receipt, or a screencap of your check out page, whatever.  Basically prove to me you bought a ticket within the time frame.  You can send proof over to: risk [at] rickkitagawa.com

3.  I'll enter your name into a raffle for one of the following prizes:

  •  A copy of "The Journal of Dr. Marcus Igiatu," a book that I wrote, illustrated, bound by hand, and hand-silkscreened.  There are only about 8 of these, and I usually sell them for around $400.
  • A 28+ color silkscreen print titled "Bullies" that has three monster children looking creepy.
  • "Hydra" painting from the Bestiarum vocabulum show last march, a big-ass painting of snake-tacular proportions
  • A custom printed tie for you.  You can see all the designs and tie colors at http://www.monkeyandseal.com/ties.html
  • 3 "Fantasies Shattered" prints.
  • 3 "Sad Panda" prints.
  • 9 "Jackalope" prints
  • And if none of the previously created work interests you, I'm also offering to create a digital illustration of whatever you want.  You basically get to be the art director, and I'm your illustrator and I'll print you a 9"x12" copy.  
4.  If you notice, there are 20 different items up for raffle, and I need to sell 20 tickets, so as long as you crazy rabid fans out there don't buy ten tickets each, the chance of winning something is pretty high. 

5.  Also, the way I'm running the raffle is that the 1st person picked gets their choice of prizes.  I know in contests sometimes I personally want 3rd place rather than 1st or 2nd, so this way being the first picked person gets their top choice.

Cool.  That's it.  I'll do the drawing on Friday the 17th, and will notify winners via email.

Thanks everyone!  So go buy your ticket(s) NOW!  Oh yeah, if you want to see some shots of the prizes:

 page excerpts from the book

 "Bullies" the big-ass silkscreen print

 The Jackalope print

 The Sad Panda print

Hydra painting
"Fantasies Shattered" print

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Hella WIPs

So after joining the amazing WIP Nation, I've already got some great feedback on my Arctic Horror piece, which I'll be revising.  I'm also working on about five different pieces simultaneously to try and trick myself to not get bored with any one piece.  As long as I'm working on something new, the painting process gets less tedious, and by working on different pieces, I find that I'm painting each one faster, as since I'm taking breaks from each piece I reapproach each one with a fresh pair of eyes.

Anyway, here's two new WIPs (works in progress) for your viewing pleasure.

Larissa, Airship Mage, 1st Class

  Noxia, Queen of the Slime

Started working in two different styles, came out with two different points.  I'm a lot more happy with the direction Larissa is going, but I think it's just because I really focused on the figure in the slime painting first without resolving the background.  Thus, you have a much more finished foreground and a crap background, making me hate the painting, when I really just have to work on the background as much as the foreground.

Well, just gotta keep going.  I'm working on two other digital paints and a traditional piece, but they're in such a rough, crude, "I want to stab myself" point, I'll wait until they're a bit more respectable before posting them.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Arctic Horror - finish! No really this time!

Okay, decided there were still some tweaks to make, and thus, I spent the hour or two tweaking stuff.  Much happier with it, and I think it's time to move on and at least let this one be done for now.  cool.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Arctic Horror - finish!

Whew.  So while I think I only logged in about 12-19 hours on this one (I wasn't the best at tracking time spent on this project), I'm pretty happy with the end product.  Perhaps I'll come back to it in a few days and work on it more, but so far I'm pretty happy.  This is also the longest I've probably ever spent on a digital paint, so that in itself is a big accomplishment for me.

Cool, time to get on with the other pieces I have in mind.  Go Friday art days!

I'm pretty excited that with the new HP Lovecraft movie in the works, the shoggoth is gonna get more attention.  Woo!

Friday, January 6, 2012


And progress.  Still chugging along.

It's weird that I'm usually okay spending 20+ hours on a traditional painting, but even spending 7 on a digital one seems super difficult.  At least it's coming along!  Still lots of rendering to do, more lighting on the background, etc. etc. etc.  Yosh!

Anyway, I'm already starting some loose sketches and thumbnails for other new pieces.  I asked some fellow Big Umbrella members for inspiration, I got "Punchline" and "Three legged Dog."

For punchline, I ended up with a sketch of a dark circus that has a bone bridge leading up to it and tons of crucified people staked around it.  For three legged dog, I had a rotting zombie dog eating it's own leg.    And who says I can't turn anything dark and creepy?  No one, that's who.

Anyway, if you have any interesting themes or suggestions for future paintings, I find I usually get inspired easier from other people than myself.  Comment away please!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy 2012

Yay for a new year!  I feel like more and more, years go by quicker and quicker.  I would assume that's a good thing, but there's already so much work to be done in 2012!!  Arg!

Anyway, one of my new goals is to develop two portfolios - one for book/CCG/RPG illustrations, and one for creature/monster design.

Here's a quick WIP (about three hours in) of an illustration I'm working on which I hope to print and put in the upcoming Big Umbrella "Girls with Guns" show.