Monday, December 26, 2005

Workin' Vacation

Merry Christmas to all! I am blogging from my inlaws house in South Carolina. I don't have a great connection and no scanner so not much of an update today. My mother-in-law DID get a new digital camera so I can at least show you my work set up while on vacation here. NOt very glamorous but it works. It's a working vacation which means that I am trying to only work half days and spend the rest with the family. I did take off the first few days for Christmas and some much needed rest. It's been really great and I am enjoying being with the family. Hope you all are too!

Monday, December 19, 2005


The next Drawergeeks(.com) assignment is "the Hulk" and the comic nerd in me HAS to do it. We have a ton going on but it's that age old "art thing": whenever you are working around the clock on an assignment, THAT's when you can't wait to draw something else! I was working into the midnight hours last night and it was all I could do not to grab a piece of paper and start doodling! "Stay focused and go home and sleep, Tom"....Well, I finally got a chance today to doodle since we are starting to catch up here on the paid work. These are a few Hulk sketches to get warmed up. Not loving anything yet, but they were fun. Some bad anatomy in these parts, don't look too closely. I actually grabbed a green Prismacolor pencil by a flook and it helped put me further into the mood.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Wonder Woman

Whenever I want to draw a female superhero (which is what I always draw when I draw superheroes), the first one I always think of is Wonder Woman. I don't read Wonder Woman, except briefly when Byrne was doing it (old habits). I just love her costume and the dark hair and the, well,....the whole package. Fun to draw. Anyway, this was a quickie so don't look too closely. It's based on a pose Rob strikes alot.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


Ever have one of those days? The days were the drawings don't look like they do in your head? Yeah, me too. The above drawing was created for my Character design book, but it illustrates some days I have had more recently. Those are the days I love having another artist in the studio. Rob and I have had - and still have- tons of work we have to get out before we take our Christmas break! OR we have to take work with us...sigh. NOT what I want, but it's starting to look like reality. Believe me, I don't want to complain, we are being blessed with work and (more importantly) relationships right now. We love our little company, but sometimes you miss the paid vacations where someone else does all of your work while you're gone! Here's to "good drawing" days!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Lord of the Beans!

Go out and buy this new DVD from Big Idea Productions called "Lord of the Beans". It's got some really funny spoofs of the live action film with the similar name and if you have kids, it's got a great message for them. The above is some unused art we created for a project with Big Idea. The first are my design/inks and the second is the final color by the talented Jon Conkling. I think this is one of his best pieces working with us! You go Jon!

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Character design process

These three images where for a little job I did for fun. ("Job" and "fun" together? This really mean that I didn't get paid for these, it's spec. work.) Rob and I were getting to know (and possibly work with) a local Christian "girl group" that will remain unnamed. They are made up of three ladies. I did this mostly for fun and I thought it would be cool for the younger members of their audience to have some stickers or T-shirts with manga versions of the group on them. Anyway, these three drawings show a little bit of the process I did. I actually created a couple more sketches but they are not here. I include all 5 sketches in my character design book that I mentioned in my last post, so buy that and you get the WHOLE process. I didn't do a bunch of exploring on this as I was pretty happy with the middle version of them and jumped right to a final pose with that design (the color one). Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Finally! The Character design book

I've been patient, but I can't take it anymore! I gotta sell....uh...mention my upcoming character design book! Over this last year I have been writing and illustrating a "how to" character design book called "CREATING CHARACTERS WITH PERSONALITY" that comes out from Watson-Guptill in Feb! Not long to wait now. I may even get some preview copies this month, so I REALLY can't wait. Above is the cover as well as a sample page layout and even a piece of art from the book to illustrate rhythm in drawing women. As with any job I do after hours over a long period of time, it's not all my best work but I think the overall feel of the book is gonna be good. My biz partner, Rob Corley, wrote and illustrate the chapter on designing creatures and it looks awesome as well. In addition to that, I was blessed to get contributors like GLEN KEANE (FORWARD), BUTCH HARTMAN, PETER de'SEVE, JACK DAVIS, MARK HENN, J. SCOTT CAMPBELL, AND MORE! I'm telling you, I would by this book just for their contributions! I'm gonna cry,,,,hang on...okay, go to and preorder it today! You get the discount right now. Whatyawaitnfer?

Monday, December 05, 2005

Another quickie!

This is a quickie as in it's already done, not a quick sketch. These two images are for a pamphlet we worked on for a anti-smoking campaign directed to preteens. I had to redraw the girl's body three times! Turns out my automatic "default" setting for drawing girls is set on "Sexy". She's supposed to be 8-11! Oops. I did the sketches and inks and our great buddy, Jon Conkling did the colors. Nice job Jon! I'm gonna start posting about my character design book soon. Get ready to get SOLD to!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

A brave new world

I did the this drawing to try my hand at a manga style. It's based on (though not exact) a character from "Shaman King". It's fun to try new things.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Kronk's New Groove

Does anyone get the feeling that I don't sketch for pleasure? It feels that way sometimes. This is yet another drawing for a job. This was one of twelve illustrations we did for the end credit roll for the new Disney release "Kronk's New Groove", which I think is out now. It was a fun project to design these photos that are supposed to illustrate what happens to Kronk on his honeymoon. Still haven't seen the final color, but I hear it looks good. Rob and I split these down the middle and I did about six or so and this was one of them. We had to clean them up also, which was hard remembering how to do that. The irony to this job is that my twin brother Tony was the supervising animator for the character of "Kronk" on the first film. Because our drawing styles are similar, I thought drawing Kronk would be easy and fun. Turns out, Rob had to go over most all of my Kronks to make them more on model. Don't tell Tony, he doesn't read this blog anyway.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Love and Wrath

These are two drawings hot off my desk. They are for the kids bible we are doing right now and I gotta say that it's been pretty enjoyable. I really can't wait to see it all done. Not because every image is my favorite piece of art, but that the WHOLE should be pretty unique. The writing is good, the art interesting, and the graphic design is fresh. Something I would definitely buy for my kids. The other fun thing has been the opportunity to rediscover the bible from a whole new perspective. As soon as you read through a passage (even a simplified version like this) and start thinking about how to illustrate it, it's hard not to "live" it a little bit. It's also hard not to take something away and go "Wow, that really happened!" These drawing represent a little bit of that for me. The first is the part of the bible where Jesus comes into the temple only to see that people have turned it into a money market. He goes crazy mad and wrecks the place and throws them all out. That's what really happened, but if you've seen other biblical illos of the event, it's a pretty placid scene with Jesus standing erect and pointing for the people to leave. I tried to capture (in a kid safe way) a little of the energy of the moment. The next illo is Jesus soon after, healing and loving the kids around him. Basically summing up what he was all about and what the temple was really for.

Friday, November 25, 2005

"SOAR" poster ala Struzen

This was a cool job that Rob and I worked on a bit ago. Two of our old Florida animation pals live out in LA now and are bigwig directors. They occasionally direct commercials too. When they do, they are good about calling up old friends to animate and such. In this case, they had been hired by AMC theatres to do one of those mock film trailers where at the end, they break out of their acting and tell you to turn off your cel phone. They are usually live action mock films, but this was the first one where they were creating a mock animated film. Our pals came up with a whole mock film, SOAR, about a coming of age eagle that is living under her dominating father's wing. She longs to be "on her own" so she can soar, or something like that. It's real strong Disney story 101. We watched the trailer and knew it was a mock film, but still got sucked into it! Anyway, we were hired to create the one-sheet poster for this mock film. They supplied us with model sheets of the poster and we gave them about 6-8 different designs. The one above is the final with pretty tight lines for the painter. The bonus for this job was that they had the GREAT Drew Struzen paint it! It was intimidating but exciting. We have yet to see the final painting. Maybe some of you have, I hear it's out. The trailer can be seen on the web also.


Whew! Still eating and napping after that great Thanksgiving! Hope everyone had a great one, we sure did! I just wanted to throw this up 'cause most people didn't see it and it was fun to do. This was for Drawergeeks, a forum to draw goofy things with a bunch of friends. If you wanna see more go to This was for the Halloween themed Drawergeek were we were asked to "draw your favorite classic monster."

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Fantasy Lab illo

Rob and I got back in from Virginia Beach late last night and I'm back to throw up a blog already! The trip went well, if everything works out, we'll post about what the secret project is soon. Kinda cool. Anyway, the above was some art we created for a new video game company in California called Fantasy Lab. You can see this image on their home page as a preview of what's to come in "feel" anyway. These are not characters or even an idea that relates to any porticular future game. They look to be a new company that wants to create fun games for the whole family! I'm there. This was designed by Rob and I, but painted by one of our supertalented former Disney BG painter friends. Can't say who 'cause of their day job, but nice job Frank! (Just kiding, it's not a Frank.)

Friday, November 18, 2005

Evolution of a sketch

Above are drawings for a job we are doing for a (well, we can't say for what)- let's just say that the final illo is to show a kid making good decisions and bad decisions (and the results show on each side of the mirror). I had drawn this up once already and the client thought the character was too old so I had to redo it making him younger. Losing money by the second (joking....kinda) , I did a quick sketch of what the kid might look like about 8-11 years old. That was the range the client wanted. The first image where he slightly more realistic is that version. Next, and soley just for fun, I did the next, more stylized version of him. Simply because I liked the hair swish and wanted to push it. This wouldn't work for the client so the final rough sketch where he is at the mirror is more of the version one kid. Hey, the client makes the rules- and them's the rules.

PS. Rob and I are on a biz trip on Monday and Tues. so no blogs until later.

Opposite Forces!

Okay, my brother has already given me a hard time about my first blog post being a sells pitch for "Andi's Journal"....BUT...(here it comes) Opposite Forces, my comic book I wrote and illustrated is being published by Alias Enterprises in COLOR right now! The cover above is from issue #3 that is out right now. (Good luck finding it.) I kinda like this cover because it sums up the issue by reading the characters facial expressions. For these new Alias rereleases of OF I am creating all new cover art and of course the interiors are being colored (very nicely I might add, by the talented Josh Ray) and this issue and issue #4 have interior inks by the talented Cedric Holmstadt (sp?, I'll get his link up soon). This cover is actually one I produced for the original black and white series, for issue #4 I believe. Turns out, I asked Frank Cho to do a pinup for that issue that turned out soooo good, I bumped this cover and used his! This cover actually works better as issue #3's cover anyway as this is the issue that Bopper starts to lead this intrepid twosome! All for now!

Kid's Bible job

Whew, I start a blog and then I get sick. Sorry, I missed a day already, not such a good start. Well, here's a quick update to throw up. The above illos are three of over 200 that Rob and I are creating for a Children's bible for NavPress in Colorado. It's based on the "Message" which is a kinda 'casual' telling of the bible, but still relevant and accurate. We are producing these in a more "Nic" flat style, kinda like "Fairly Odd Parents" or something. It's been fun, but hard a times since it's not our natural style. We don't take things as far as we could, I think, but it's still fun and I think the bible will truly be unique. We are producing all the illos through Funnypages Prod. but we hired our longtime colorist, Jon Conkling, to color the illos. Nice job Jon!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005


Hey! My name is Tom Bancroft and I am starting this blog to see what these things are all about. Also, as a way to let people know what I'm up to and about some of the projects I or my company have coming out. I'll start with a new book series that myself, my biz partner, Rob Corley, and my wife, Jennifer, created. It's called "Andi's Journal" and it's for the Christian market- specifically, it's a chapter book series for pre-teen girls. It was created because Rob and myself have preteen girls. We like challenges over here at Funnypages Productions, and this one was to see if us "old folks" could create something that 'tween girls (of all things) would like. So far so good. You can find the books (book 1 and 2) at any Christian book store or at (Book 1- and Book 2- The cover art we produced for book one is above. Thanks and more soon!