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Thursday, February 23, 2006


Time to grab your pens and your pencils boys and girls! I'm launching my first official
I've started it off with one of my favorite cartoons of all time, FAT ALBERT!

HERE'S THE PLAN: Draw your favorite Fat Albert and the Cosby kids pic. It can be your favorite character, or the whole gang! Any medium or style you want, be it digital illustration, painting, hand drawn, sculpture, whatever you feel is best. Everyone of all ages can submit, so SPREAD THE WORD!

HERE'S THE METHOD: Contest ends March 16th, that's 3 weeks from today. I didn't want to rush anyone, so you have plenty of time to do your best masterpiece. All you have to do is go to the comments button "ON THIS POST ONLY" and paste the url. info to where your image (or photo) can be found. You can also direct me to your blog if it's uploaded there. First and foremost, HAVE FUN! I will be constantly reviewing submissions and will announce the GRAND PRIZE WINNER that following Monday, March 20th.

Wait! Did I say GRAND PRIZE!? Yep, that's right. SACKS10 and will be handing over a MECHA BOY designer toy figure to the lucky WINNER. This 8.5 inch limited designer toy which sells for $39.99 has been donated for the contest compliments of Ralph Cosentino. It even comes with a mini Mike figure and skate board that you can tuck away in the robot's secret compartment. CHECK IT OUT!

Sunday, February 19, 2006


When I left GA to move up to Cleveland, OH and work for American Greetings, roughly 2 years ago, I didn't know what to expect. Back home, I was surrounded buy a lot of zany creative people in and out of the animation biz. Strangely enough, my journey to Cleveland was leading me into the world of Licensing. My first illustrating job with a big corporation. My first week I saw a lot of corporate attire and quiet straight-laced designers. I thought to myself, is this really where I wanted to be? Where is the fun, off the wall, out of the box attitude I was used to being around? Suddenly, I smelled the strange scent of hot dogs grilling somewhere nearby. I followed the smell a few cubicles down to a crazy looking guy with these massive porkchop sideburns wearing an iconic werewolf tee. He was grilling hot dogs on a huge Foreman grill IN HIS CUBE like I don't give a s**t. I was immediately intrigued. This is how I meet Ralph Cosentino. Ralph had his own style, his own agenda and did things his way. Ralph recently left American Greetings to pursue his dreams by developing his world of characters into fun product as a business of his own. He quickly moved into a studio space called "A Zillion Concepts" where he shares the space with 2 other great artists who are also his longtime friends. In this new office he spends time producing and developing toys, books and entertainment for the masses as well as freelance projects to pay the bills. (ya still gotta eat) In a short time, success has grown with the production of his 3rd toy and the NEW release of his second widely published book FUNBOY. His hard work enduring long sleepless nights, the determination to be successful and the support from his loving family and friends is beginning to pay off. Ralph's style is simple and fun for the whole family to enjoy. His stories have the innocence from a child's perspective of discovering new things. He is a creative force and a great inspiration to me, which is why I had to interview him and share some of his experience with you.

SACKS10: How did your toy company U.F.O. Toys come to be?

RC: I needed a vehicle to bring more exposure to my characters and work so I started my own little toy company. It being my own, enabled me to do whatever I wanted, and at the same time be solely accountable good or bad.

SACKS10: You've successfully produced toys, plush, and children's books on your own. What is your thought process on taking a cool concept to a finished product and how do you decide on which platform to take it to?

RC: I think that becomes a personal decision to a point because I use platforms I like, i.e.: toys, comics, cartoons, and children's picture books. It could be t-shirts, sneakers anything, I would say choose a media YOU love and start there

SACKS10: Which do you have the most fun producing, toys or books?

RC: Actually I enjoy both equally. Print and Toys bring a satisfaction unique to each other.

SACKS10: How did you get into publishing children's books?

RC: Again, this was a way to bring more exposure to my characters and work and a good stepping-stone.

SACKS10: What's your favorite picture book?

RC: Momo Taro by Masakazu Kuwata published in 1963

SACKS10: What was your first published book and what inspired you to do it?

RC: I first self-published Pierre & Pal'ette. Dinosaur Dudes, Tiny Butterfly Friends, and the Reading Family series. Penguin,Viking then first published Honk-Honk-Ashoo and Swella-Bow-Wow, and next week are releasing my second book with them; The marvelous misadventures of Fun-Boy Twelve wordless stories told in big comic panels for some knee slapping giggles!

SACKS10: Where did the concept for Honk Honk-A-Shoo and Funboy come from?

Get a copy NOW

RC: The names Honk-Honk-Ashoo and Swella-Bow-Wow came from my son, but let me preface this story with a setting...our home. That place Charles laughton as the hunchback of Notre Dame called, "Sanctuary! Sanctuary!" Our home is our sanctuary just like it is for most families in the world. A place where my family and I unleash the silliness to our hearts content without worries of witnesses. Here I would often lay my weary bones on our couch and pretend I was sleeping while exerting fake snoring sounds, (talk about leading bees to honey...I became a human trampoline) . Well, one day my son, who was three at the time, was drawing feverishly on my good laser paper, abstract images of imaginary characters. So I asked, "who is this?" and he said "Honk-Honk-Ashoo, Dad!", as if I should have known! He continued, "You know, Honk-Honk-Ashoo" imitating my fake snoring. I immediately fell in love with the name and had to give it life! Similarly, he drew a picture and said it was Swella-Bow-Wow. It was a given that she would be a puppy. My son's drawings at three were more like Jackson Pollack paintings so it was difficult to extrapolate a character from them. I organized a brainstorm session with the whole family early one Saturday morning in our bed (which also became a trampoline for my circus trio). I grabbed my sketchbook and marker and said, "Let's create Honk-Honk-Ashoo". We wanted to come up with a character that could be multifaceted and have characteristics that could be helpful to others. It did not take long for my oldest daughter (who is a prolific artist and writer at the age of eight) to simply say, "how about a pillow head, that others could lay their head on when they are tired?" I could not sketch fast enough. The brilliant simplicity of his creation by my children made Honk-Honk-Ashoo my most endearing project. That's it in a nutshell or pillowcase.

My inspiration for Fun-Boy was my childhood and all things that I enjoyed then and still enjoy now like comic books, toys, Godzilla, Martian movies even westerns and such. The book also allowed me to sneak in some social comments. Most of the characters in Fun-Boy are actually based on friends of mine (including Sax). It is really a book I think everyone can relate to because it does harken back to everyone's childhood in one form or another done in a humorous, cute way.

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SACKS10: The short stories in Funboy resemble panels in a comic strip, what made you decide to execute a kid's book this way rather than a full story from beginning to end.

RC: I am a big fan of old newspaper comics.

SACKS10: Funboy is somewhat of a prankster at times, what is the biggest prank that you ever pulled?

RC: Heheheheheheehhe. Hmmmmm, I will have to plead the 5th on that because I may incriminate myself.

SACKS10: What a lot of people don't know is that you have a do it yourself type attitude and a strong drive to get your ideas out as actual product. What drives you and keeps you focused?

RC: Well, I always new I wanted to reap the rewards of my labor and ideas and not give them away to a company and some poser, corporate card carrying, back stabbing, plagiarizing, yellow bellied brown noseing managers and bosses. Which were never going to compensate me in any way and or could fire me at any pitiful whim. The idea of not having control over my life always bugged me.
So I have been literally killing myself for years and years tolerating corporate jobs and working on my stuff at nights, weekends, vacations to get my work and characters out there.
It is a tough game out there when you’re up against huge companies with millions of dollars to try to give exposure to your work especially if you are trying to build a brand.. All I had was a lot of tenacity, and support from my family and friends. And it is really my family that drives me and keeps me focused because I want to be able to offer them, me a better future. I don't mean just financially, I want to be able to spend quality time with them and not work day and night.

SACKS10: Of you three ventures, which vehicle has proven to have the best results for your concepts?

RC: That is a tough question because I have had different success with different vehicles.
Being published, especially by a respectable publisher can add validity to your work but that really depends where you want to go. For example, My Honk-Honk-Ashoo series is taking me to entertainment and product placement but it wasn't just the book and that fact of being published that did it, don't get me wrong it helped, but one cannot sell themselves short, it is the content (work) that really attracted everyone.

But more importantly than what types of vehicles I used, you have to get your work out there. You can make a toy or a book but if you don't haul it out of your studio, no one will see it. I was always terrified that people would steal my ideas, and people will, but remember, no one will have the same twist you as a unique artist will have and it wont do you any good to horde it. I was doing the Toy fair before there were designer toy aisles there, I was doing licensing shows, comic cons, book shows to get my work out there and I am still doing it. These venues open a lot of doors and you can then start to network with others.

You have to invest in yourself AND most importantly BELIEVE IN YOURSELF.

To see more of Ralph's work, visit these links. Tell him SACKS sent ya!

Thursday, February 16, 2006


You gots ta CHILL. Chilly Willy Was a cool character that was always in search of a way to stay warm. This Cartune character was one of many toons created by Walter Lantz. I did this one on a sticky note pad, and then quickly colored it in photoshop. Trying to keep it real simple.

Another popular Walter Lantz character was Woody Woodpecker. I sketched these 3 poses in my sketchbook, then touched them with a little color in photoshop.

"Ha-ha-ha haaah-ha!"

HOLY TOLEDO! The Amazing John K. has started a blog. He's one of my top insperatons for wacky cartoons. Go over and shower him with comments. all kinds of stuff

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

OH YEAH! Cartoons pics

Here are some designs I did for a shorts pitch over at Frederator. for OH yeah! cartoons. These characters were based on a concept called "Dust Motes" by the Great Larry Huber, Creator of Chalkzone and Executive Producer of Oh Yeah! Cartoons. Larry also got me my first gig over at Nickelodeon. I Whipped up the designs and storyboards under his direction. Unfortunately, the short didn't make the cut, but Larry said it was cool that I share some of the art with my fellow bloggers. Even though we didn't make the cut, you guys (and Gals) should swing buy and check out some of the other cool shorts in production over there.

I forgot to post the main villain in the short, He's my favorite of the lot.

On another note, ArtAsylum is relaunching the Madballs toys this year. I use to collect these grossed out balls as a kid. The new look was sketched out by my friend James Groman, who is also featured over at Drawn. You can get a sneak peak of the new designs over at the Madballs website.
Below are a couple of photos from NY Toyfair 2006.

Monday, February 13, 2006



Okay, This has nothing to do with Animation or art, but if you want to start the day off with a gut busting laugh, then you gotta see GRILLZ . This clip stars P. Sean and Nicky J. lip syncing "GRILLZ" by Nelly. Dig the kid mean mugging in the background. LMAO!

Even better, If you still have some breath left, peep BACK THEN. Check out kid DJ'ing on the bed in the background (dead serious). I love some of Hip Hop's shining moments. These two kids will probably end up making films in hollywood.....or directing music video's for J Lo and 50 cent. Above all, it looks like they're having fun. I'm glad the wonderful web wasn't around when I was their age. You'd probably catch my butt moon walking across the screen with a million zippers on my jacket screaming "Who's BAD!"

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


This is the last monster in the monster mash series. I must apologize for missing this week and last weeks THROWBACK THURSDAY. I've been super busy and would hate to rush one out for the post. I promise it will be back in full swing next week. In the meantime... Dig this ASS WHOOPING!

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


I came across this cool Pixar golden book last night and had to pick it up. I am on this Golden book kick right now. As long as it's Toon related, I'm with it. Anyway, I already had the Chicken little book with slick graphic illustrations by Lori Tyminski. Now I've got this super cool Incredibles book featuring the sketchy expressive artwork by Tony Fucile. It's a short story of the short from the incredibles DVD called "Jack-Jack attack". Both books are great buys and go good with my collection. Worth checking out.

On another note, I posted some new links to the RIGHT. VinylPulse/ where I get my designer toy fix, DRAWN/ where I get my new artist fix, Cartoon Brew/ Where I find the latest cartoon news, ASIFA Blog/ great vintage art and industry news, Mukpuddy Blog/ Cool ass team of Flash animators from New Zealand, Lacera/ an up and coming illustrator with a cool graphic take on monkees and movies. Below is a sketch of yours truly done by Lacera in a grueling meeting we had yesterday at work. (Notice the look on my face as I duudle out pooping Carebears)

Sunday, February 05, 2006

GATOR sketch

This is a sketch of one of the villains in a project created by the MADDtwins and I. He's an Atlanta kingpin named GATOR and he has an 8 foot pet alligator that he keeps in the back of his Chevy suburban. This is the flipside to the usual cartoony style that I regularly post here on the blog. I'm a little rusty with my more graphic style and hope to exercise it more for my mature projects. This is the initial idea that I roughed out first.

Once I got my concept down, I had a hard time figuring out his face. I looked at some old John Romita Jr. Kingpin art from the Daredevil books for insperation. He's one of my favorite comics artists. I tried a couple of variations and decided that they were a little cartoony.

Here's the final sketch. Maybe one of the twins will throw a little color on her. If so, I'll post the final result.

Here's a sneak peek of the two main characters. We collaborated on this poster some time ago. I thought I'd share it with you all as well.