September 29, 2005

Painting the Walls

Tomorrow begins a several day long process of cleaning and painting the front 2 rooms at our office. We're giving the entry room and our conference room a coat of dark warm red/coffee brown paint to add to the ambience. We hope to put our company logo on the wall in some kind of tone-on-tone vinyl. The front room will have a nice couch, maybe a fishbowl, a receptionist/secretary desk, a mini-fridge packed with water, a coffee station, etc. I'm voting for white Christmas lights.

Photos to come as we finish the process. Anyone have a conference table that they're getting rid of?

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September 27, 2005

What's New

We're enjoying our work here at Portland Studios. Seems like most of the guys here are working on their entries for the Society of Illustrators. Can't wait to show you the pieces. Justin's is based on Pilgrim's Progess. It's an all out assault on your candy-coated assumptions of the story's visuals. Chris is working on a small project for Relevant along with his portfolio development, and work for Oxford University Press. Cory's doing spot art for Landon Snow 2 and he's about to start on a story for Oxford University as well. We're also in the midst of a variety of design jobs---the newest of which is Andrew Osenga's new solo album---we talked with him last night about the direction the art should take. We'll see. This week I'm mainly devoting my attention to some marketing calling---and writing a marketing plan for our business for the next year.

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September 20, 2005

Worst Christmas Ever

Worst Christmas Ever

Best discovery ever last night. There's way more where this came from. These are free---produced for Sufjan's family each Christmas for the last three years. One album per year. Pure brilliance---includes tracks like Come, Thou Fount along with some original tunes.

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September 17, 2005

Chris Koelle's New Blog


Chris is one of the illustrators who works with me at Portland Studios. His work is getting better and better. Just in the last few months, he's been perfecting his work in Photoshop to enable him to produce some fantastic traditional-mimicing looks. Check back with his blog to get some amazing illustration pieces---and maybe some desktop backgrounds for your computer. If you're a fan, do him the honor of linking to him from your blog. Thanks!

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September 11, 2005

Thinking of How to Help

I have some friends who are going up to New York City to help Rob and Sarah Elkin in their church plant. This is precisely what I'd like to do if possible. Even for a few months. I'm just considering the idea of going up for a two month period and helping them get their name out, as well as using the time for meeting with publishers, animation studios, and design firms---trying to get illustration work for Portland Studios. I figure that if I sold my car, and used public transportation only, I could really get along up there for roughly the same cost of living. Roughly. That would mean tightening down on food budget, and just watching my money closely. But it'd be doable, I think.

Posted by bmcallister at 06:19 PM | TrackBack

Here Is Love

This is one of the most singable and theologically sound texts I've heard put to music. It's familiar to some, and yet not to many. Check this one out. It's a old melody from the Welsh revival.

Here is love, vast as the ocean,
Lovingkindness as the flood,
When the Prince of Life, our Ransom,
Shed for us His precious blood.
Who His love will not remember?
Who can cease to sing His praise?
He can never be forgotten,
Throughout Heav’n’s eternal days.

On the mount of crucifixion,
Fountains opened deep and wide;
Through the floodgates of God’s mercy
Flowed a vast and gracious tide.
Grace and love, like mighty rivers,
Poured incessant from above,
And Heav’n’s peace and perfect justice
Kissed a guilty world in love.

Let me all Thy love accepting,
Love Thee, ever all my days;
Let me seek Thy kingdom only
And my life be to Thy praise;
Thou alone shalt be my glory,
Nothing in the world I see.
Thou hast cleansed and sanctified me,
Thou Thyself hast set me free.

In Thy truth Thou dost direct me
By Thy Spirit through Thy Word;
And Thy grace my need is meeting,
As I trust in Thee, my Lord.
Of Thy fullness Thou art pouring
Thy great love and power on me,
Without measure, full and boundless,
Drawing out my heart to Thee.

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September 08, 2005



We've just today switched to Studiometry for all project management. It's going to be pretty incredible if we can make a full migration. Should help keep all information centrally located and organized. Very stable and robust.

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September 05, 2005

La Hacienda


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September 03, 2005


One of the best albums I have EVER heard.


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A New Era of Art

Something has changed. At least in my perception. I've been noticing more good art being made these days. In every area of the arts that I see around me, it seems that fresh work is being created. In music, in illustration, in film, etc. In the area of music, there are Christians and non-Christian alike developing sounds and genres that are a hybrid of other genres that have come before. For example, you have Sufjan Stevens and his 50 State project. You have Nickel Creek (like their pop-ularity or not). Even Postal Service takes something like electronica and Gameboy sounds and lays over it smooth light vocals. Something entirely new and refreshing.

In the area of illustration, digital techniques seem to be opening up new styles and methods of painting never before tried. In the Illustration annuals and even at work in my office I'm seeing new brushes being developed, faster ways of working, richer colors, and a seamless way to move from initial concept to final piece. Anyone who questions the importance of new techniques in painting should check out the Gnomon Workshop's DVD series showing how it's all done.

Additionally, it seems that filmmakers are just now starting to really know how to use the special effects and 3D animation technology that they have to tell great stories---not just eye-popping explosions, but great stories with a tactile believable design sense. Take any of the Pixar films, LOTR, the upcoming Open Season, (in my opinion) the sweeping cinematography of Sky Captain, etc.

All this is banter, but my point is to say that I'm encouraged by the state of affairs in the arts. I'm glad to be able to feed off the excellent work that's being done by those around me.

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