Rooting for the Cold, Home Team

Kevin Spear Sketchbook 0808, page 106-107

Things weren't going so well for the home team. It was a cold night and they were losing. At least the cheerleaders kept up motivated even as they bundled up.

Illustration Friday: Rambunctious

I did this portrait for a Christmas present. I thought of this when the word for Illustration Friday was "rambunctious," because a family if four boys has to be a rambunctious family.

I drew the base art in Adobe Illustrator, then took it into Photoshop for the final touches.

Sketch of father and son sledding

Pencil sketch of a father and son getting ready to go sledding.

There is just enough snow on the ground to get a guy thinking about sledding. I drew this in pencil within my sketchbook.

Illustration Friday: Santa's Balloon

Santa's Balloon, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Santa takes a trip around the North Pole. He can't use his reindeer all the time, can he? This is what he does for free time. The big guy has to get away once in a while.

I drew the line art with Pitt Artist Pens. The color is in Photoshop.

Deer to Door

Deer to Door

Cartoon of deer to man: "Good evening, Sir. Did you know crashes are on the rise?"

I drew this in Adobe Illustrator CS3.

Illustration Friday-Pretend


Cartoon of adult to child: “Let’s pretend you don’t think I’m an idiot when I ask you a computer question.”

I drew this in Adobe Illustrator with the pen tool and live trace.

Cartoon: More of the Same

Spear Cartoon 3475

"Don't complain about school lunches. Their punishment is just more of the same."

Cartoon of two boys in a school cafeteria. This cartoon may not be factual. All I know is it seemed to happen to me.

Spear Cartoon 3474

Spear Cartoon 3474, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Schoolboy coming out of rain to dad, "It's cold, rainy and yech out there... a perfect day to be in school."

The weather inspired me today. It's just a good day to stay inside!

Portrait: step one

I've been busy with a few assignments. This is one of them. I have a family portrait I am working on. This shows the first steps in digitizing it.

I drew the sketch earlier and got approval from the client. I scanned that sketch and placed it in Adobe Illustrator. The scan is on a template layer. The default for a template layer in Illustrator is a 50% gray. I grayed it out an additional 50% using the transparency palette and setting the blend mode to multiply.

The above figure shows how I'm starting out. I'm using the pen tool to trace my sketch. The lines are magenta so they stand out from the scan. These are all on a layer I'm calling outlines. I will use this layer to create my fills and strokes later.

Here is a detail of how I'm outlining. I'm not worried about the color or weight of the stroke. That will all change later. I use the pen tool because it gives me a much smoother outline with the fewest points.

Next time, I'll show you how to fill the areas with color.

Election Day 2008

Election Day 2008, originally uploaded by speartoons.

This morning did live up to the hype where I voted. I never saw lines that big in my town for Election Day.

I'm glad people are taking their responsibility seriously this year. That is a silver lining to the financial mess and all the mudslinging we've endured.

I drew this in my sketchbook with a ballpoint pen. I added the color in Photoshop.

Trick or Treat Digital

Trick or Treat Digital, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Happy Halloween. I took yesterday's sketch and turned it into a digital image.

I drew this in Adobe Illustrator.

Trick or Treat!

Trick or Treat!, originally uploaded by speartoons.

The trick-or-treaters will be coming tomorrow. Are you ready? I thought of a clown as the main character because I've known a few friends who are not afraid of any characters... except clowns.

I drew this in my sketchbook with a mechanical pencil.

Stump Speech

Stump Speech 10/28/08, originally uploaded by speartoons.

A stump speech sounds... well, wooden, dead, kaput. What about the rest of the tree? Why cut down a tree just so someone can babble on and on? That's what a blog is for. Get with the times!

One week to Election Day!

One week to Election Day!, originally uploaded by speartoons.

From my sketchbook, 0808, page 130.

I can't wait for the election to be over. The ads are running fast and furious. Everybody is saying how awful their opponent is. Is there anything good to say? will everybody be able to kiss and make up once this is all over? I sure hope so.

Spear Doodle 10/27/08

Spear Doodle 10/27/08, originally uploaded by speartoons.

The Frankenstein monsters gabs it up with The Bride. It's a little something right out of my sketchbook.

Illustration Friday: Repair

Illustration Friday: Repair, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Drawing for Illustration Friday's word: "Repair." Frankenstein tries to repair the monster. The monster isn't thrilled about the ideal.

I used this illustration to experiment with using flat shading and no lines. I also made liberal use of layer masks in Adobe Illustrator to use the shading in the shadows.

Werewolf Walks His dog.

Werewolf Walks His dog., originally uploaded by speartoons.

I was thinking about those clear, star-lit nights when I've taken the dog out. The other night, I heard a scream in the distance.

I don't know if someone was serious, if it was some kids joking around or even if it was really a human scream. It was too far away to tell and it blended with distant freeway traffic and a train whistle. So much for a peaceful night! Then again, it was perfect for an October night.

I drew the illustration in Adobe Illustrator.

Jack O'Lantern twins: Drawing a Day 33

Drawing a Day 33, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Old guy meets his jack O'Lantern twin.

This was drawn in Adobe Illustrator CS3.

"I'm dedicating this to Blake, who came out of surgery yesterday. Go get 'em, Tiger!

Drawing a Day 32

Drawing a Day 32, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Ghost meets a mouse in a haunted house

I drew this in Adobe Illustrator.

Yes, I'm feeling a little Halloweenish today.

Illustration Friday: Late/Drawing a Day #31

Drawing I did for Illustration Friday. The word was "late."

All the work was done in Adobe Illustrator CS2.

Spear 3473 Cartoon

Spear 3473 Cartoon, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Cartoon. Boy with bandage over dollar to dad, “Now that I fixed the economy, can we talk about something else?”

On this cartoon, I experimented with no line work and just shading for the figures.

All my cartoons are available for purchase and use in print, and electronic use.


Spear_DAD30, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Drawing of a goofy bird. It's based on sketchbook 0808, page 92.

I'm giving ";Drawing a Day" another try. Come on, Kevin! You can do it!

I drew this in Adobe Illustrator CS3

Spear_3472 Child IT

Spear_3472, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Cartoon-Dad says to son at personal computer, “I’m sorry I got gruff with you. Now please reestablish my Internet account."

Cartoon: Dog missionary

Cats, originally uploaded by speartoons.

This is a sketch right out of my book. I had to add the type so it would be readable. Those camera phones aren't the sharpest tools in the shed, but at least you can see the drawing.

Cartoon: One dog to another, "I feel called to be a missionary to cats."

Illustration Friday: Strings

Illustration Friday: Strings, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Cartoon of two boys. One has string attached to waist. That boy says, "My mom still has a hard time letting go." Submitted to Illustration Friday under the word, "Strings."

Illustration Friday: Sugary

Illustration Friday: Sugary, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Thank you card I drew for my in-laws. It fit the bill for Illustration Friday's theme "Sugary." I drew this with ink and color pencil.

BTW: Thanks, Mom and Dad.

E4674 page 07 hidden picture

E4674 page 07 hidden picture, originally uploaded by speartoons.

I illustrated this activity for this page. This is in pen and ink with a crow quill pen. There are six items hidden in the picture; an oil lamp, rope, donkey, Bible and ladybug.

This page is the property of Warner Press. All rights reserved


Spear_090817a, originally uploaded by speartoons.

Sketch from sketchbook 0808. A coy boy looks at a running girl. There may be a crush going on, no?

Illustration Friday: Island

Spear, Kevin; Sketchbook 0807, page 159

These are my thoughts for Illustration Friday's word, "island". No man is an island and I didn't want to do the old, desert island cliche either!

Drawing a Day 29

Drawing a Day, 329, Kevin Spear

Here's a drawing I did in Adobe Illustrator. This is in my simple, cartoon style.

Illustration Friday: clutter

Illustration Friday: Clutter / Drawing a Day #28

Man shows clutter on the brain. I was thinking how cluttered the mind can get when there are so many things to do. The sketch was rendered in Adobe Photoshop.

Spear 3470 / Drawing a Day 27

Spear 3470 / Drawing a Day 27

I found these two characters in my sketchbook and I decided to get them out into the open. It's a good day for an alien sighting anyway.

I rendered these in Adobe Illustrator.

Cartoon 3468 / Drawing a Day #25

Cartoon 3468 / Drawing a Day #25

Cartoon of boy to baby: "Ah, the memories!"

This is also my entry for Illustration Friday. This week's theme is "memories."

Drawing a day #24

Spear 3467 / Drawing a day #24

Girl on beach to boy: “You’re leaving because there is a hurricane warning? I’ve hear that line before.”

I drew the line art with a crow quill pen and rendered the color in Adobe Photoshop.

Christian Children's Book Review: What's A Bathtub Doing In My Church?

Christian Children's Book Review: What's A Bathtub Doing In My Church?

The "Christian Children's Book Review" blog has a nice post about a book I wrote and Illustrated called, "What's a Bathtub Doing in My Church?"

Thank you, CBR!

Drawing a Day 023-The birthday

Cartoon 3466 / Drawing a Day 23

Woman with cake to older woman, "Look, Ms. Goldie, I'm sorry I put, 'Sweet eighty six and never been kissed,' on your cake."

Yes, birthdays are on my mind. I had one last week, so I'm the old woman, except I'm a middle aged guy.

I did this in pen and ink before taking it into Photoshop. There is a marked difference between this style and the last one I did. I waver between using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop for a cartoon. Illustrators has it's advantages in that it is bold and graphic. I can blow it up and I don't have to worry about an illustration getting pixelated. However, Photoshop allows me to put some texture in the illustration.

Let's say they are like my kids; I love them both. Though if I had to make a choice, I'd choose my kids.

Illustration Friday: routine / Drawing a Day 22


Dog with owner. Dog says to a cat, "He's been a good owner once I got him on a routine."

I scanned my pen and ink drawing into Adobe Illustrator. I used Live Trace and Live Paint to colorize the drawing.

Vhrsti: Illustration Friday: Routine

While I am thinking what to do for Illustration Friday, I've been looking at other's works.

Vhrsti is an illustrator from the Czech Republic. I love how he portrayed this theme in a wordless comic strip.

Vhrsti: Illustration Friday: Routine

The first six panels look deceptively simple. Then the last panel makes such an impact because of its size and detail. Nice job!

My Life As A Bunny: 8-19-08

My Life As A Bunny: 8-19-08

I discovered Max Estes through I like his humor. He has a nice style and great flickr page too.

What I find interesting about his work is his bold shapes and energy.

Drawing a Day #21 / Illustration Friday: Detach

Spear_3464 Drawing a Day #21

365 Drawing Challenge #21, Cartoon 3464. Man with laptop in park. Squirrel looks on. Also is for Illustration Friday's word: Detach

Drawing a Day 020

Spear 3463, Drawing a Day #20

Cartoon: Boy to monster, "I know what you mean, when I was the new kid in school, I felt like I stood out too."

I found this monster in one of my past sketchbooks and wondered what it would be like if he had to go back to school.

Drawing a Day 019

Spear 3462, Drawing a Day #19

Cartoon of three boys on a medals stand. One says, "Do we have to do this every time you win something?”

I have to do something while I'm watching the Olympics. This one came when I saw a few pouting faces as the medals were presented. Cheer up guys! There's always four years from now.

If you need a cartoon on a specific subject, send me an email and I can help you out.

Drawing a day 18

Spear 3461-Drawing a Day 18

Cartoon: Girl to prostrate boy, "I have to say your repenting skills are improving."

Illustration Friday: Sail/ Drawing a day #17

Spear_3460 Drawing a Day 17

Cartoon of man and woman in a sailboat. Woman says, "So this is the luxury cruise you promised me?"

Once again, I'm combining a drawing a day with Illustration Friday. It gave me a good chance to get a sailing scene drawn out.

Hunter Brown is Here!

Today is the release date for "Hunter Brown and the Secret of the Shadow." We are excited here at Warner Press. This is a book I had a small part in laying out and sending to the printer. The Miller Brothers have done a fantastic job with this book and they have a great web site to go with it at They also have a blog at

Cartoon 3459 Roller Coaster

365 Drawing a Day Challenge, Cartoon 3459

I went to Kings Island on Wednesday. Amazingly enough, I didn't get sick, though after eleven roller coasters, the old body had enough.

Stepdad steps


This cartoon was done in Adobe Photoshop.

I was thinking how confusing it can get when kids have step parents and it's school registration time. Which name goes where? And who can pick up the child? Somebody help. I need an organizational chart.

Drawing a Day 14/Illustration Friday: Poof


I was thinking how we wish life would be easy. Yet, what would be the point? If life was easy, we would be lazy. We'd spend all day in front of the television, bored and lethargic. An easy life just isn't magically delicious.

Drawing a day 13


Yesterday I was asked to act as a science teacher for our Wednesday night church kids.

We were supposed to have a science experiment. I was handed the materials on Sunday, had vacation time Sunday and Monday, and got to see what it was all about on Tuesday evening. I didn't have time to try the experiment ahead of time. Big mistake!

Nothing exploded, thank heavens. No one got hurt, no one passed out, but the experiment didn't work. Chalk one up to "should have tried the experiment ahead of time!

Drawing a Day 012

Drawing a Day #12

When calculators first came into the mainstream market, my baby sister would spend hours playing with it as if it was a video game. Come to think of it, Pong wasn't much more exciting than a calculator!

Drawing a Day_009/Illustration Friday: Canned

Here is my post for Illustration Friday. Yes, I've been canned before. I prefer the term downsized. It sounds good to the waist.

Drawing a Day 8

Be careful when you put those sheets in the laundry.