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In the studio today

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WEDNESDAY. DECEMBER 16.3 PM

INKING BEVIL ISSUE #582

It's true.  This is the 582nd Bevil issue I've inked

in the past 25 years.  With an average of 175

covers per issue, that's over 100,000 painted envelopes.

Then there's another 20,000 in the sports line,

along with at least another 10,000 I've

painted for the H & M line.  And I'm

still smiling.  This is a portion of the

rendering for the Greetings From

Arkansas issue.  I'm focusing on

Bath House Row in Hot Springs, Arkansas. 

What was Hot Springs called before

it got hot?  Warm Springs. No, really.

 

 

 

MONDAY. DECEMBER 14. 10:45 AM

THREE IN THE BULL PEN!

With three issues in the Bull Pen, I'm painting one more, then they'll be released to collectors.  Study the revised Greetings From Maryland in the Bull Pen, and you'll see a few color changes, to liven it up a bit. Click on the icon to get there.  I've also coined a new phrase for the site- "Collected out."  I'll begin using that in place of "sold out".

I just utilized it on the details copy for the issues in the Bull Pen, where I state how many artist's proofs were painted for each issue.

Why?  All in fun.

 

MONDAY. DECEMBER 14. 10:15 AM

NEW AFDCS AD

Janice and I took off the week.  Happened as a last-minute move, and now we're back in the studio.

When you visit IN THE STUDIO TODAY, you get the scoop in Bevil news before other collectors.

Not that any of it is life-changing, but it keeps you in the loop of Bevil things.  One thing I should have taken care of last week, is the upcoming AFDCS ad.  This morning I submitted my ad to our hard-working friend, Mark Thompson.  I say hard-working, in that he takes his personal time managing the advertising details of the AFDCS Journal every issue.  Thanks Mark, for all you do for the AFDCS.

Today Janice is passing me the topic for the next GFA issue.  I have no idea what it will be.

When I get word of it, I'll pass it along. 

MONDAY. DECEMBER 7. 8 PM

PAINTING GREETINGS FROM MARYLAND

I'll be painting this issue late into the day tomorrow, and then jump into this month's fourth issue.

It will be a Greetings From America issue, not sure which state.

Have a pleasant evening.

FRIDAY. DECEMBER 4. 1 PM

READY TO PAINT

Inked, with the copy approved (and revised) by Janice, Greetings From Maryland is ready to be

painted by my hand.  I will hand paint every cover, all 175 of them.  Joyfully, I will add.

There's a good story behind this cover- of two brothers, working in different barber shops,

 their struggles with poor health, locked in a failing economy, putting their hands to blocks of cedar.

All the while whittling a great legacy.

Enjoy your weekend.

THURSDAY. DECEMBER 3. 7:30 PM

A HAIRCUT AND "COUNTERFEITS IN WOOD"

As I'm putting together all the pieces for the Greetings From Maryland issue,

the spotlight is being cast on two brothers from Chesapeake Bay, Lem and Steve Ward, who have become world famous for their duck decoys produced in the 1930s and 40s.  They perfected their art, whittling on decoys while waiting for customers to arrive in their barber shop for haircuts.  The decoys sold for $1.25, and these men would never have believed their decoys today can sell for upwards of $40,000.00.

THURSDAY. DECEMBER 3. 10:15 AM

AMERICAN PHAROAH ISSUE #2!

After winning the 3 major horse races, obtaining the Triple Crown, American Pharoah wasn't retired

by his owners, rather, was run in the Breeder's Cup, and won.  This is the first time a horse has

won the Grand Slam of horse racing.  I just couldn't pass this up, as this may not repeat itself

for several decades to come.   American Pharoah can now trot off into the sunset.  Or run.

These are my cinderellas affixed to the main lot and artist's proofs. 

TUESDAY. DECEMBER 1. 8 PM

THE QUIET VOICE

While a few changes were made as I became acclimated to the cover design,

one seemingly small alteration was, I moved the right edge of the shadow from

the corner on the cliff, over a few feet to the right on the cliff facing.  Most simply put,

the purple shadow contrasting the yellow glow increases the activity on the cliff.

On Bevil covers, shadows play a quiet, but vital role.  Study the grill on the firetruck to the left

in the margin, Ted Williams above the firetruck, and Sam Snead below the truck.

What do you see?  Shadows.  When you get your next packet of covers, look for the shadows. 

For this cover, the shadows are the final step in my painting process. 

Shadows testify of the light source, what time of the day it is,

the general location of the sun, and set the overall mood for my covers.

Clearly my favorite, most enjoyable moment in the painting process is when I'm applying the shadows!

MONDAY. NOVEMBER 30. 9:45 PM

WINNER!

Cover collector Pat impressed me with his breakdown and comparison of the two versions,

so he's awarded an unpainted cover from the Montana Greetings From America issue. 

And I must say, the cover looks pretty attractive in it's unpainted state.

Tomorrow I'll show one change I made in the cover, and why.

MONDAY. NOVEMBER 30. 4 PM

TELL ME DIFFERENCE!

In this small region of the envelope I made more than one alteration.  I added the trees,

changed the mountain and bushes to a green with more yellow and less blue, gave the sky a sunset, and the fourth change is subtle, and a bit tough to spot.  In fact, the first collector to tell me the third change I made, receives a Greetings From Montana unpainted cover.

To help you focus, it's not in the back two mountains. The change is right before your eyes. You get one guess, and the most recent

winner sits this one out.

MONDAY. NOVEMBER 30. 3:30 PM

MADE SOME SMALL CHANGES

After I ink the rendering, I don't print the image on all the envelopes, rather just one.  Then I paint it.  I do this to identify any errors in the ink rendering.  If all goes well, I'll then print the whole issue, and proceed to paint them all. After printing and painting the first cover, the one shown on the bottom,

I went back to the rendering and added

the tops of pine trees on the mountain

closest to us, the green mountain. 

Upon a closer look, you can see I

changed a few colors as well, in the

Montana banner and th copy box.

In addition to these 2 versions,

there's a few unique color studies

here in the studio somewhere.

SATURDAY. NOVEMBER 28. 10:45 AM

A FEW MORE TO GO

Okay, maybe I jumped the gun a little by going ahead and placing the second issue in the Bull Pen.  I'll complete this second issue in the next few days, and quickly move onto the third GFA issue.  I don't know what issue I'll be painting until Janice researches the topic choices.

Enjoy your weekend.  You can Always click on the icon to see what's 

been painted and waiting to be released to collectors. 

 

FRIDAY. NOVEMBER 27. 11 AM

GREETINGS FROM MONTANA

Today, and probably through the weekend I'll be painting the GFA Montana issue.

Enjoyed inking this issue, but a tough one to paint.  I'm still astonished to be hand-painting covers.

Especially after five issues are sitting here on our big work table poised to be gathered up and sent

out to cover collectors across America.  To look at 800 hand-painted envelopes, realizing each one

is individually hand painted, still sets me back.  Off to painting I go. 

Enjoy your turkey salad, turkey sandwiches, turkey soup, turkey casserole,

or whatever else you can dream up.

TUESDAY. NOVEMBER 26. 10:45 PM

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

Today Janice and I wish all of you an enjoyable and pleasant Thanksgiving. 

It will be a bit of a quiet day here at home, with our daughter and her family now living in New Mexico.

I hope you're spending the day the way you'd like. 

Happy Thanksgiving.

TUESDAY. NOVEMBER 24. 8:45 PM

WINNER!

Cover collector Frank Scalzi, holding back his guess, responded to the recent hint, "You're going to need your sunglasses," and just gave the correct answer, The Going-To-The-Sun Road.  For his good guessing,

he receives his pick from this issue's unique color studies. I'll begin painting this issue tomorrow.

TUESDAY. NOVEMBER 24. 3 PM

NEW HINT FOR THE CONTEST!

With no one having guessed what scenic highway, route, or road I've chosen as my topic for the next GFA issue, here's a hint

 

"YOU'RE GOING TO NEED YOUR SUNGLASSES."

 

CONTACT ME HERE

TUESDAY. NOVEMBER 24. 11:AM

THE CONTEST IS STILL ON!

As of yet, no one has guessed the scenic drive I've chosen as the topic for my next Greetings from America issue.  It's not Route 66, Mount Rushmore, nor the Pacifice Coast Highway in California.

Some of you who are risk-takers and waiting to jump in, if no one guesses correctly soon,

I'll give the first hint at 3 PM.  You get one guess.

 

CONTACT ME HERE

MONDAY. NOVEMBER 23. 6:30 PM

THE CONTEST IS ON!

For the Greetings From America issue I'm presently inking, if you can guess the topic I've chosen,

you'll be the proud owner of a unique color study from this issue.  To narrow down what state it could be, you need to go here, and check off these states already painted.  Theres' 22 remaining. 

 

I'm focusing on one of America's most scenic drives. 

It's not Route 66.

 

You get one guess, and will have to give me the state and the topic of that state.

If no one guesses correctly by tomorrow afternoon, I'll give a hint at 3 PM.

FRIDAY. NOVEMBER 20. 10:15 AM

KONA COFFEE

With the perfect combination of soil and climate conditions, Hawaii is the only state in the U.S. able to commercially grow coffee beans.  Kona Coffee is ranked as one of the world's finest coffees, also making it one of the most pricey.  No cover collector was able to identify the plant on the cover, so the color study goes unclaimed.   You also didn't pick up on my hint in yesterday's blog- "As I was sitting having coffee..."

This is a very difficult cover to paint, in that when my design is made up of several subjects, instead of one or two, it can fall apart, and end up weak.  My strategy to save it is by placing emphasis on the sack.  The sack is more appealing than the plant, lady, or background.   I'm painting this issue for the next few days. 

And it's time consuming.

THURSDAY. NOVEMBER 19. 10:30 AM

NO ONE'S CLAIMED THE PRIZE

As I was sitting having coffee with Janice this morning, I expressed to her my glee and amusement that no one has guessed what plant and state I'm working on.  Surely there's one of you out there who hasn't used up their one guess yet, and can figure it out.  I'm painting the issue today, and later will post the cover.

 

CONTACT ME HERE

 

MONDAY. NOVEMBER 16. 3:15 PM

CONTEST STILL ON!

The Hawaiian Rockwort is an interesting plant indiginous to Hawaii, and is used widely in landscaping on the Hawaiian Islands.  However, that it not the plant I'm depicting on this new Greetings From America issue.

Sorry Curt.  I see a pattern here of most of you looking at Hawaii and California.  That's interesting.

Not that that's not the right direction.  And, not that that's the wrong direction to go.

You're seeing my poker face.

 

CONTACT ME HERE

 

MONDAY. NOVEMBER 16. 10:30 AM

CONTEST STILL ON!

It's not the kukui nut plant from Hawaii. Nor the California Almond Tree, or the Rose Carolina from

New York State.  This is a little tougher because you're not able to quickly google the answer.

This plant is unique to one state in the United States.  I'll begin painting this issue today.

WEDNESDAY. NOV 11. 1:45 PM

FIVE NEW GREETINGS FROM AMERICA ISSUES

I'm working on the next five Greetings From America issues, and here's a portion of the artwork for one of the states.  The first collector to tell me what plant this is and what state it's from, will receive a complimentary unique color study.

You get one guess.

 

CONTACT ME HERE

WEDNESDAY. NOV 11. 1:45 PM

NEW LINE? NOT SURE.

Steve Brand, longtime avid Bevil collector, had me produce this issue for him, documenting Miguel Cabrera hitting his 400th homerun.  If he continues to have me produce baseball issues, though not very often, this will, in time, be designated as issue #1 for his line, utilizing me as his cover painter.  I'll complete these today, and we'll have to see where this takes us.  I was incorrect stating the issue size earlier; the correct size being 50 main lot and 10 artist's proofs.  Collecting contact info to come soon.

MONDAY. 5 PM

AMERICAN PHAROAH GOES OUT IN GLORY

Following his win of the Triple Crown,

American Pharoah just won the Breeder's Cup, his fourth major victory this season, becoming the first horse to win the newly created "Grand Slam" of Thoroughbred horse racing.  With horse racing history being made, I've decided to document this monumental event, creating a companion to the freshly painted American Pharoah cover most

of you have just collected.  I'm as excited

about this new American Pharoah issue

as I was with the first. 

Again, one of you cover collectors,

this time Ron Allen gave me the

heads-up.  Thanks Ron.

 

 

SATURDAY. NOVEMBER 7. NOON

AUCTION COVER!

This gets dropped in the mail today, headed to the Dallas area for the annual Chapter 56 Fred Sawyer auction.

The Texas icon on the cover identifies their unique Bevil 1-of-1s I paint for their fundraisers.  Along with the American Pharoah cover, they're receiving the Lincoln Funeral Train cover, as well as the freshly painted 

Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams issues.  If only you could be there to grab them up.  All to a good cause.

SATURDAY. NOVEMBER 7. 10 AM

BACK IN THE SWING OF THINGS

Before I tackle the upcoming 5 issues for Bevil collectors,  for the past few days I've been producing a sports issue for collector Steven Brand, documenting Miguel Cabrera of the Detriot Tigers, hitting his

400th homerun.  I'll post the painted version later in the day.  This will be a small run, 60 in the main lot and 10 artist's proofs, with no varieties.  Later I'll provide Steven's contact info and price.  Janice is busy this weekend packing up and sending out several Bevil unpainteds you've ordered, in response to the e-card sent out yesterday giving a heads-up to the unpainteds.  Now when I paint an issue, I always leave at least a half dozen for you who like the unpainted version of my issues.   If you haven't yet enjoyed their simplistic nature, see them here.

 

My brother Troy and I are loaded down to the max with gear, about to embark on a 32-mile trip down the mighty Rio Grande River, which borders Mexico.  I'm on the right, the one with the tacky packing job.

 With each morning, my packing improved, somewhat.  We're riding on "sit-on" kayaks, which have very low sides.  This made for a very "close encounter" and "wet-butt" experience with the rapids, boulders, and dark deep whirlpools, which Troy never got used to.  During the four days on the river, after paddling past Boquillas, we didn't encounter one person or party on the river.  We had the huge, beautiful Rio Grande all to ourselves, shared only with a few wild burrows, and a herd of wild horses.  Very nice.

 

TUESDAY. NOVEMBER 3. 6:30 PM

BACK FROM THE RIO GRANDE

I've returned from a great adventure on the Rio Grande River, and I've a lot of catching up to do, with many emails to reply to, and lots of ends to mend.  Thank you for waiting patiently for my reply to your inquiries regarding the All-Stars set, the color studies, and the American Pharoah artist's proofs. 

It's great to be back and soon we'll be jumping into the next five Greetings From America issues.

Here's a few pics, and I'll load several more in the upcoming week and post on it's own page.

I'm approaching Boquillas, a Mexican village positioned on the Rio Grande.  Without passports, we chose to save that excursion for the next trip.  The following morning I redistributed my gear so my stern wouldn't be sinking so low.  I'm thankful we didn't encounter any fearsome rapids, as my set-up here would have been a pretty easy tump.  We did take on a few class 2 and maybe 1 class 3 rapid.  All went well.  The river was at an ideal level and speed, as it can be fast and trecherous at times.

 

For our first camp on the Mexico side, Troy and I utilized a lookout position the locals use for keeping a watch for Texas Rangers as they peddle their souvenirs to Big Bend Park visitors across the river.  So I knew we'd have some visitors early the following morning. Yep, and I cooked for four.  After eggs and sausage, our new friend took us on a short hike to "Crystal Cave".  It's actually a huge geode, the size of a small room, and when a cliff eroded, it revealed the inside, of which the walls are covered with crystals.

 

FIRST DAYS NEWS

IN THE STUDIO TODAY