Friday, November 25, 2011

Illustrating for Alfred

Happy belated Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday. I had a nice, relaxing day full of food and TV shows. Every year I watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the National Dog Show. This year I enjoyed watching the Lady Gaga Thanksgiving Special. Did anyone else catch that? It was slightly nontraditional, but still quite classy!

Several months ago, I was contacted by Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine to illustrate a story. I've done some illustrations for this magazine before, and it's always exciting for me as an Alfred Hitchcock fan! Here's my latest illustration:

The story I illustrated was called "Calculus for Blondes" and is on page 112 of this month's issue. So if you find yourself in a book store or grocery store in November, see if you can spot the magazine. Then you can tell whoever you're with that you're friends with the artist. That's what I do when I see one of my online friends' creations in a magazine. That's always an exciting moment for me!

In case you're wondering, that one character is supposed to be wearing a terrible toupee.

This is the cover of this month's issue. It's printed with January/February 2012, but this is the one on the shelves now.

My Twitter friend, Eric (lugosi6) was thoughtful enough to go to the grocery store and take some pictures of my magazine on the shelf. I really appreciated this, since my local bookstore was sold out of the magazine. It's in the upper middle spot, between Ellery Queen and Analog.

Eric also snapped a few photos of his sons reading the magazine. A frightening moment!

Considering the words carefully...

They're such good actors, because the story wasn't all that scary or thought provoking! Eric's Twitter page is here:!/lugosi6

He's a fun person to chat with, so I suggest following him!

I don't think I shared this before, but last year one my pieces was on the cover. I'm sharing this now, because some of you who are familiar with my Halloween Old Maid cards might find this interesting:

The tombstones on that card were just calling out for some text! I remember turning to the back of the cover last year and seeing my name near Alfred's. It was a surreal moment, because I'm flattered to be associated with him in any way. I am such a fan of his movies and TV show. One of the best parts of the Alfred Hitchcock Presents show were the story introductions. You know how there are some people who manage to say potentially offensive things, while still remaining innocent and classy? Well, Alfred Hitchcock was one of those people. An example of this is my favorite intro:

Not many people could pull that joke off in such a serious way. He somehow made macabre topics acceptably lighthearted.

I have one more Alfred Hitchcock related video to share. I meant to share this in October, but that was a busy month for me. Since this is a Halloween themed blog, there's no reason for not posting it now!

If you aren't familiar with the Threadbanger how-to videos, you're in for a treat! Actually, you're in for a treat either way. These crazy, crafty people put together tons of Halloween how-to's. In fact I would have had this blog post up last night, if I hadn't been distracted by all their videos. This is their Alfred Hitchcock themed episode. You'll have to suffer through a few advertisements in the middle of this video, but it's worth it.

Watching the first part of this makes me think of my Dollar Tree crows again!

Well, tonight I'm in for something spooky. My friend Stacey will be joining me for a Children of the Corn movie night. This will be the first time either of us has watched the movie. We're making Children of the Corn themed treats, and I'm sure it will be a good time! I'll have to let you all know what I think of the movie in my next post.


  1. Congrats on the magazine! YIPPEE!!

    I have not seen Children of the Corn yet so you will have to post on what you thought of it!!


  2. LuLu ~ Thank you! :) I was excited to have this opportunity!

    I'm looking forward to watching the movie. Although, after reading the back of the DVD, I realized that the movie is different from the one I thought I was getting. I figured it would be about evil kids, but I might have been thinking of a different evil kid movie!

  3. Are you watching the original? Just curious. I've never seen any of them myself.

  4. Dex ~ Yeah, we're watching the original from 1984. I didn't even know there were others!

  5. Congrats!! I'm going to the mall on Sunday so I'll look for the mag. I'll be sure to take pics if i find it.

  6. Wow! How exciting to be featured in a magazine! I love the illustration. I don't think I've ever seen any of your artwork in black and white. The cover artwork looks amazing as well! That's one of my favourite cards in your 'Old Maid' deck!

    Alfred Hitchcock's humour is so dry and deadpan. I love the "an idiot can operate it, and indeed, many do" line. Haha.

    That 'Threadbanger' video is great, although I managed to still get squeamish over the head being cut off fake crow!

  7. P.S. Of course... the 'Old Maid' is black and white! I think that deserves a DUH, Emma! Haha.

    Were you thinking of 'Village of the Damned' when it came to the evil kids movie? The kids all have white hair and white eyes.

  8. WooHoo! That's really cool Justine! Congrats!

  9. How ToTaLLy AwEsOmE !!!!!!
    Congrats to you! :0)
    I always loved Alfred Hitchcock and his ooberly solemn composure.

  10. Congratulations Justine, I'm really happy for your success! How long does it take to draw something like that and what materials did you use? Children of the Corn - I can't wait to hear what you think!

  11. And why not! Your work is amazing. Hitch is one of my favourite spooky movie directors. Many congratulations.

  12. Awesome illustration. Congrats on being in the magazine. I will keep my eyes open for it at the store.

  13. Congrats!

    Though I must admit, when I think bad toupee I visualize Ben Affleck.

  14. Wow! Thanks for the support everyone. :)

    Vivienne ~ Thanks for taking a look! I'll be interested to know if you find it. I'm not sure which stores carry the magazine. The only place I've ever seen it is Barnes and Noble. I was really surprised that Eric found it in a grocery store!

    Little Gothic Horrors ~ Yeah, it was exciting! It's thrilling to open a magazine and see something you created! I liked seeing that little graveyard in a new incarnation. I like to ask people which of my Old Maid cards is their favorite, and a lot of them say it's the graveyard! Haha, well if we're being technical, the witch has a little fleck of pink in her eye. :)

    Yeah, Alfred was really deadpan! I liked that part of the joke too. I thought about that as I read the news stories involving guns and the Black Friday sales this year!

    I agree, the part with the crow's head getting chopped off was too gross for me. I was disturbed just watching her cut a fake crow's head off with a knife.

    Yes! "Village of the Damned" was exactly the movie I was thinking of! How did you know? That will probably be the next scary movie I watch. Have you seen either "Village of the Damned" or "Children of the Corn"?

    Dave the Dead ~ Thank you! :) Good to see you around here!

    Jeanne ~ Thanks! Yeah, I think Alfred manages to carry off his jokes by acting so solemn. That and wearing a suit adds some seriousness. He always looks and acts like he's on the way to a funeral!

    Matt ~ Thank you! Oh, I probably worked a few days on this after deciding on a concept. As I recall, I used ink and black and white acrylic paint over my drawing. Have you seen "Children of the Corn"? I have a lot to say about the movie and can't wait to write up a review!

    Ali ~ Thanks so much. :) Yeah, Alfred is probably my favorite spooky director. I can't think of any other director who has captured a mood or built suspense like he has. There's always a little twist of humor too. If I tune into the middle of one of his movies or shows, I can recognize his style right away!

    Adsila ~ Thank you! :) Cool, let me know if you run into this issue.

    Pensive ~ Hahaha! Does Ben Affleck wear a toupee? I might have missed that. I can't really picture what his hair looks like. Actually, when I drew this I was thinking of someone I knew. My source of inspiration had really bad looking hair, so I figured it was real. I mean, who would buy something that awful? From what I was told, his toupee was outed when he went swimming in the ocean with his girlfriend. I guess a big wave came up, and wooooosh away the toupee was carried. I hope it didn't choke some poor sea creature or scare the unfortunate person who found it. I guess his girlfriend thought his hair was real until that point! That story makes me laugh so much, that sometimes if I need to smile for a picture, I think of it. :)

  15. How have I missed this post?!

    Congratulations Justine!!! That is so amazingly awesome to be associated with Alfred Hitchcock!! You're famous!

    We don't have any magazines like that in the UK! If there were I'd be subscribed! We do have ForteanTimes though which is good enough I suppose!

    I remember my brother used to collect Spine Chiller magazine when I was about 10-11 and I used to read them before bed and really scare myself! I wish he kept them! xxx

  16. Great news! Can't wait to go looking for this issue. I'm a huge believer in "when opportunity knocks...."

  17. Justine, CONGRATS! How exciting, I can't wait to see it in person!!!!

  18. Those are amazing. I didn't know how talented you were until I saw those and I'm glad everyone gets to see them in the magazine!

  19. VainGlorySinner ~ Haha! Oh, I've only had this post up for a few days. You probably just didn't read blogs on the day I posted this. Sometimes, if I don't read blogs for a day or two, I miss a lot!

    Thank you! Yeah, I actually do feel a little famous. :) I read once that Stephen King has a subscription to Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine. So, I imagine that he's seen my art. That's pretty cool to think about!

    I looked up the ForteanTimes web site, and it appears to be filled with all kinds of weird and wonderful news. The "Strange Days" section of that site looks like lots of fun!

    I wasn't familiar with Spine Chiller, either. I guess that isn't too surprising, since these were British publications. I googled that and ran across a blog that you might enjoy! It's filled with all sorts of spooky stuff from England. The Cobweb Room:

    I sent you to the older Spine Chiller post, but the blog has been recently updated.

    Old Hag ~ Thanks! :) Let me know if you find the issue. I'm curious to know the places where it is sold. Yes, I'm a believer in that too!

    Stacey ~ Thank you! I hadn't told you about this? I should have shown you the magazine when you were over here last weekend. Oh well, I'll show it to you the next time we get together! I've been working on a Children of the Corn review.

    Jessica ~ Thanks! How sweet of you to say that. :) It's a fun feeling for me to have my art out there, and be associated with this magazine!

  20. It's funny because I haven't seen 'Children of the Corn', but for some reason whenever I hear the name, I picture the 'Viilage of the Damned' movie. I guess it's just the general creepy children theme.

    I've seen the 1995, John Carpenter remake of 'Village of the Damned, starring Christopher Reeve. I really can't remember it that well at all. I'll have to rewatch it. I've never seen the original from 1960. I'll have to put them on my "to watch" list!

  21. I used to read Metal Hammer and Terrorizer magazines from the UK, so we have quite a cross- cultural exchange here!

  22. Little Gothic Horrors ~ Oh, I'm surprised to hear that the original "Children of the Damned" came out in 1960! I figured it was just an 80's movie. I guess I haven't seen any photos from the first one. I should try to find the 1960 version first. I'm curious about why those kids have white hair. Are they aliens or something?

    Matt ~ I don't know about either of those magazines, either! Yeah, I love when the cross-cultural exchange thing happens. :) I have learned so much about other cultures and countries through blogs. By the way, if you didn't click on the link I posted above for VainGlorySinner, take a look. You'd probably enjoy that blog too!

  23. Justine! That is so cool :) Congrats, and great job :) Miss you!

  24. Katie ~ Thank you! I'm glad you liked this illustration. :) I miss you too! Do you plan on being home for Christmas?

  25. Terribly late joining the celebration for your recent publication! The image looks terrific. And I'm particularly fond of the ghostly emissions rising up out of the exhaust. Just the right touch of impending doom for the story!

    Congrats, Justine!

  26. King Unicorn ~ Thank you! :) Don't worry about commenting later on, because I always check for my newest comments. The ghostly emissions are my favorite part. There was a car in the story, but the emissions didn't have anything to do with a sinister plot. Those are there because I thought the illustration needed some skulls to spice it up. ;)