Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Fantastic Freelance Illustration Job!

I'm lucky enough that my freelance career has kept me busy, while allowing me to grow as an artist.  Unfortunately, busy means no time to update my website, this blog, or look for my next project. ( I do post cool stuff on instagram, twitter, and my facebook page)  I'm a good guy to follow on any platform because I usually only post stuff that I find interesting, and don't just post to fill in space. 

So this year marks the 100th anniversary of the company that I freelance for, and, after a few years of me insisting that I need to be in on the anniversary book, they finally agreed, and so began a long, sometimes frustrating, always interesting learning experience.  Besides some spot illustrations and the occasional reprint of my early work, I got to work with top management and an outside publisher to create spreads for each of the book's chapters... a large illustration to represent a decade of the company's history.  As a history buff, and an artist, I loved this project, which involved a ton of research, and ended up with concept art style illustrations that I'm really proud of.

One of the biggest challenges of the job was working with, in spirit, six art directors, each with their own visions for the project, but each wanting the very best we can do.  Some of the art was designed by committee, and some were personal visions of myself or one of the others, and it is a true testament to the group's professionalism that we supported the individual's passion, and worked together to fulfill the idea. A good example is my client described the scene for the PQ Arctic Convoy of WWII seen below, which was a pleasure to bring together.  Another would be the Lloyd's of London building (at top) which was my own vision.  I scraped together a mock-up of the idea using a mix of stock photos and quick illustration, and I was honestly not sure that anyone would see it as I did until I got the (hurray!) go ahead to work it up.  My heart was in my throat until then because I soooooo wanted to draw that!

It was a long project with constantly tight deadlines, but in the end I'm proud of the work, and most importantly, the book looks fabulous.  Everyone did their part, and did it well, and no one can ask for more than that.

The entire set of work can be seen at my Carbonmade portfolio.

JOHN :0)

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Press Release for The Inquiring Minds #2


CONTACT: John Steventon, Owner
August 12, 2015 
The Inquiring Minds in ‘Lights! Camera… Aliens!’ 

HappyGlyphs Comics announces the second issue of The Inquiring Minds, which is a full color all-ages comic book with a bonus story and activity page. 

Bobby, Albert, and Iris are The Inquiring Minds, three kids who seek fun and adventure by exploring all things strange and unusual in their hometown of Three Craters Lake.  When strange lights are reported near Anderson Ridge, Albert is convinced that it is aliens from outer space.  Bobby and Iris are convinced that they'll never get their homework done unless The Inquiring Minds investigate!
Will they find space aliens, or something even more unexpected?

Find out in... "Lights, Camera... Aliens!"

“This second book follows up on the popularity of the first,” says creator John Steventon.  “’The Ghost Pirate Skeletons of Three Craters Lake’ was the full length story that fans had been asking for.  That story had the kids creating their own adventure, literally in their own back yard. This second story goes back to their origins, and has them going out and seeking adventure.  Both stories are leading up to an even bigger story that ups the risks, as well as the rewards.  ‘Lights, Camera… Aliens!’ is a lighter, fun story that is really the calm before the storm.”

The Inquiring Minds #2 debuted at San Diego Comic-con International 2015, and now makes its digital first appearance at, at this link.

Produced by HappyGlyphs Comics, The Inquiring Minds are all-ages adventures, featuring a diverse cast and intelligent humor. The Inquiring Minds began as a kid friendly web-comic, which spawned a comic strip collection entitled The Inquiring Minds: Funny Pages #1 and two eBooks available for the Kindle App.  Individual cartoons have been featured in a book about the great Underground Railroad, as well as an 8th Grade Literature textbook.  

Fans can learn more about The Inquiring Minds and other great HappyGlyphs Comics at, online bookstores like and, comiXology, and at various comic conventions such as Comic Con International in San Diego.
Art for this comic is available upon request. 

HappyGlyphs Comics offers fun & original comic strips, comic books, and graphic novels, and is the official home of The Inquiring Minds and Knight and Day comic strips. We also offer freelance illustration and other art and comic related services.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

National Cartoonists Society

I've been quite busy since joining the National Cartoonists Society!  This is something I wanted for quite some time, and I am proud indeed to have earned my membership.  Not only have I gone to my first Reuben Awards (in San Diego, yet!), but I've had the privilege of meeting some very talented people, and working on some interesting projects.

One thing I will say is that being a member, and being surrounded by so much talent, really humbles a person, and, hopefully, encourages them to better work.  In my case, I've upped my game considerably, wanting to show the world that I belong in this prestigious group.

Besides being with the NCS, I belong to a local chapter, and I'm also lucky to be near the Billy Ireland Cartoon Museum and Library, so events and meet ups happen regularly enough.  It's great to get out of the studio and meet with, and learn from, other cartoonists.

Sadly, one of the first things we've had to deal with this year was the tragedy in France. Whether you agree with the cartoons or not, free speech is a right, and should not be taken away through violence.  Many of the NCS paid tribute to our fallen comrades, and you can see those tributes at this page here.

On a lighter note, the Great Lakes Chapter of the NCS has created a wonderful cookbook featuring artwork, cartoons, and recipes by some really talented people (artwise... I haven't tried many recipes yet, so won't judge their cooking).  You can find the full color book at this link, or possibly through some members of the NCS.  (I currently do not have any extra, but let me know if you're interested.)
My contribution consists of a related series of previously unpublished Knight and Day comic strips and art.

Well, I am hoping to make the Reuben Awards this year, but not sure.  I WILL be attending Comic-con International in San Diego, and am planning to spend some time at the NCS booth there.
Stay tooned for more on that and other stuff.

JOHN :0)
On my iPod... Lorde, of course.