Red Nose Studio Honors Chris Buzelli

©Red Nose Studio

©Red Nose Studio

I was recently asked by Chris Buzelli to create his portrait for the Society of Illustrators 57th annual. As many of you know, he just wrapped up his year as the annual chairman.

I will be the first to admit that I am not a portrait illustrator, but being that Chris and I go back many years I felt that I couldn’t say no.

His paintings are synonymous with warm, glowing light, his long time role as a teacher at RISD shows that he is willing to share his light with others and the bug wings were just too cool to not include.


©Red Nose Studio



©Red Nose Studio


–Chris Sickles | Red Nose Studio

Red Nose Studio Website | Magnet RepsAltpick page | Red Nose Studio Blog

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This Week’s Featured Artists: Robert Wilson, Dermot Flynn, Michael Wylot and Andy Mahr

©Robert Wilson

©Robert Wilson

Robert Wilson has been commissioned for editorial and advertising projects by clientsbased throughout Europe and the U.S. and undertakes commissions for many of the top advertising agencies. Of note are his many sports and portrait campaigns for clients that include Peroni, Adidas, Nike, Asics, O2, BMW, Guiness, Credit Suisse, Gillette, HSBC, Camel Active, The U.S. Marines, Anglo American Mining, Siemens and The Old Vic.

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Born in Ireland, Dermot Flynn studied at the NCAD, Dublin and the University of Brighton, and has been working as an illustrator in London since 2003.  He has worked for a variety of clients in Europe, Japan and the United States including Conde Nast, Pentagram, Littlebrown, Vodafone, Penguin, The Guardian, The Irish Times, Canongate, Winkreative, Vodafone, Target, Custo Barcelona, Mothercare, Adidas, GQ, TimeOut, Dentsu Japan, Orange, EMI, StudioAKA and Mother.

©Dermot Flynn

©Dermot Flynn

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Michael Wylot Photography is a Philadelphia based photographer who specializes in Fashion & Beauty, Fine Art Figure, Music, Editorial, Event, Landscape and Product Still Life.  his work can be viewed in books, magazines, catalogs, billboards and ads all over the world.

©Michael Wylot

©Michael Wylot

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Andy Mahr was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois and received his BFA in Graphic Design from Colorado State University in 1994.  Andy then attended The Portfolio Center and received a degree in Advertising Art Direction and worked as an art director and creative director for the next 13 years.  He made the full transition from art direction to photography 8 years ago and has never looked back.  He  developed his own unique and distinctive style, look and aesthetic by paying attention not only to the way things look and sound, but also the theories and concepts that surround our lives, both from artistic and business standpoints.

©Andy Mahr

©Andy Mahr

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To see more work of the artists’ work go to


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The Year Ahead with Artist Gayle Kabaker and Astrologer Susan Miller


When Susan Miller contacted  Gayle Kabaker last year asking to illustrate her 2015 calendar, Gayle quickly realized that this was a great honor. “I sent her many of my favorite illustrations to choose from and we narrowed it down to what became a selection of some of my absolute favorites,” said Kabaker.  Gayle was going to add or change the color on a few and add edges on some to make them work for the horizontal format.   But Susan was adamant that Gayle never compromise her art with cropping or color changes.  What an unusual treat as an illustrator who is used to compromises being part of the terrain! Gayle’s ‘old school’ style, is a mixture of acryla gouache and water-color that she scans and creates collages in Photoshop.  


Internationally known author, columnist, TV personality and founder of the website Astrology Zone, Susan Miller,  finds Gayle Kabaker an enormously talented fine art painter and illustrator.  “I fell in love with her sophisticated portfolio at first glance, and I was not surprised to hear that Gayle had been chosen to do work for The New Yorker magazine.”


Susan continues to say, “My annual calendars, this year called The Year Ahead 2015, are eagerly awaited by style makers in the publishing, advertising and consumer market, so my choice of artist is very important.  The artist’s work would be found in literally hundreds of offices in the US and overseas, as we do a thorough press mailing. (My astrological calendar is unusual in that I write advice on the most important days of the year so that it’s easy to see the best days for initiations.)”


“Gayle and I collaborated so well with that the project was a joy from start to finish. I had ideas, and so did Gayle, and my creative director, Jackie Meyer, former Creative Director of Warner Books, loved the flow of the work. It was important to me to link the paintings to the mood of the seasons, and they did, quite beautifully. My 2015 calendars have shipped and are continuing to sell, and the response from readers on social media is highly enthusiastic. This project was a home run from the very beginning!”



az2015coverbuttonstring10Virgo was a painting that Gayle created for a gallery show, which later served as the base painting for her ‘June Brides’ New Yorker cover.

az2015coverbuttonstring12The Scorpio image was considered as a fall fashion New Yorker cover.

Leo was Susan Miller’s first consideration for the cover of the calendar.

Gayle created the Sagittarius art specially for the calendar.

In the end, Susan felt the Libra art was best for the cover. “I  am so happy with how this calendar turned out!”, says Kabaker.

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Prints are available of all the art – go to to reach Gayle’s store.

To purchase the calendar go to:

To see more of Gayle Kabaker’s work go to her website and Altpick page.

To go to Astrology Zone, click here.

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Valentine’s Day Wishes from Altpick Members!

Valentine’s Day is a great reminder to be thankful for all of our loved ones, family and friends.  Let’s celebrate with some wonderful images from our Altpick members.


©Beppe Giacobbe

©Beppe Giacobbe

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Happy Valentine’s Day to you from the Altpick family of artists!

To see more of the artists’ work, go to


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The Fine Life of the AVO Moment by Zave Smith

©Zave Smith

©Zave Smith

by Zave Smith

“The lights are low and the music is hot.  A small group of friends are sharing a moment and sharing the pleasures of a good cigar”.  This was creative brief that we received from Michael Olsson of Colangelo, create that perfect  “Avo Moment” for the launch campaign of their new Cigars.

The opportunity of helping to create a brand is what people like myself dream of.  The opportunity of creating visuals for a brand has compelling, as this one is exciting.  As a photographer and as a person who loves the ambiance of a Jazz Club, whose favorite activity is enjoying an evening in the company of friends over music, fine whiskey and a good smoke, this project is a dream come true.

I have spent evenings just like this in clubs from Florence, Italy, New York, Chicago, Milwaukee, Philadelphia and New Orleans.  It is the magic in moments like these that Avo represents, that “Avo Moment” is what these pictures need to be all about.

After the usual rounds of portfolio viewing and multiple bids, Zave Smith and his Agent/Producer, George Watson of Watson & Spierman Productions, were selected to create this “Avo Moment”.  Three models were casted, rooms full of “extras” were invited and a wonderful Jazz Trio provided both the musical inspiration and visual texture that was needed to make this scene feel real.

We hope you enjoy the results.

To see more of Zave Smith’s work, go to his website and Altpick page

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Steve Williams Collaborates with Burdette Ketchum on Gate Hospitality Project

Ponte VedraV-14_GHG_0055 MAILER EPPING_LR-2Photographer Steve Williams was chosen by Burdette Ketchum ad agency to create lifestyle photos for their client, Gate Hospitality Group in Jacksonville. The four-day shoot took place in September at four of their resorts: Ponte Vedra Inn, Lodge and Club, Epping Forest Yacht Club and The River Club. “We had a great crew and models, along with with wonderful production and art direction from the agency”, Williams says.

These photos will be used for ads and websites.

Here’s how the photos were used:

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Here are some ‘behind the scenes’ shots:

IMG_8709 IMG_8727 IMG_8718To see more of Steve Williams’ work go to his website and Altpick page.


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Multi-Talented Kris LeVasseur Talks to Altpick Connects


©Kris LeVasseur

Kris LeVasseur has been photographing for the film, TV, music, sports, editorial, corporate and advertising industries for the last 14 years on a national and international level. Today Kris talks with about his next adventure.

AP:  Tell us a little bit about how you started out in the arts?

KL: Musical performances for the public were by the age of 4.  Singing came first and drumming soon followed.  I have no memory of not expressing my imagination, developing my creativity and wanting others to do so with me.


©Kris LeVasseur

AP.  As a musician, photographer and film maker, which genre do you focus on the most and feel the most comfortable?

KL:  Drumming for example, is one of the only things in my life that seems almost effortless to me, but the reality of making quality music with quality people can be very hard to come by.  Creating still photographs and videos has been a lot easier to obtain.  I enjoy the independence and freedom associated with the visual arts.  I love collaboration with the subject and/or the client for example.  I thrive off of conceptual portrayals with people having fun and adding an element of improvisation to the basic blueprint that is given to me.  Currently, this is my main concentration.


©Kris LeVasseur

AP:  Is there a synergy between all of the mediums and do you combine them to create something new?

KL:  I have based a lot of my decisions as a filmmaker/photographer on what I have learned from being a musician.  I find there is a relationship between all of the mediums. When I play the drums for example, I am antenna to not only the sights and sounds of my  environment, but also the visuals that I see in my head…be it colors, abstract visions or more concrete dream like scenarios simultaneously.  Most times in regards to my personal work, I have “a vision” or “a calling” and build it up and work it out from there.  When a client presents me with what they are looking for I try my best to accommodate their needs and make them feel comfortable.  I think it’s important to know your role, understand the importance of a budget, time constraints, and professional conduct…Respect + Trust = Team.


©Kris LeVasseur

AP:  Tell us a little bit about your new award winning video for Dan Lanois’ song “Aquatic”.

KL:  I have been a fan of Dan Lanois for most of my life.  Please check out all things Dan Lanois at The video I just did for his song “Aquatic” can be found at http:://  He is most definitely a ‘sonic guru’ and has always encouraged ‘undiscovered artists’.  He embodies such an amazing, consistent and deeply humble vibe.  He has inspired me on so many levels.  When his Flesh and Machine project surfaced and I couldn’t have been more excited to participate.  I love the song Aquatic so much.  It is not only a true honor to have the video I submitted to his video contest be selected for the song, but a true pleasure to create a visual relationship with Dan’s song through light and emotion.  It was evoked by nature from a personal, sacred location under completely spontaneous circumstances.


©Kris LeVasseur

AP:  You mentioned that your next goal is to move to Panama City.  Why Panama?

KL: I like going places I’ve never gone before. l love exploring and new experiences. My hopes for experiencing Panama are that overall it’s a vibrant, driven place; I want to share my background, skills, and knowledge, creating new business and providing services to the people of Panama. I love the fact that Panama prides itself on being a true melting pot, welcomes positive change, obtains an enticing biodiversity, as well as being conscious of respect to a demographic’s history in the process of gentrification. I want to be a part of a booming economy open to passionate people that do not judge success as a threat but as an asset to all of us.


©Kris LeVasseur

AP:  Who is your greatest inspiration…person, place or thing?

KL:  My parents. They are a perfect recipe. They have great chemistry… one hand washes the other. They are resilient, motivated, and know unconditional love for each other through thick and thin. What you see is what you get and they are genuinely really good people.

©Kris LeVasseur

©Kris LeVasseur

KL:  Thank you Maria. I have wanted to do an interview with you for a long time. I have always admired you for your intellect, articulation, respect for artists, and hands on approach to the business you conduct. Best wishes! – Kris

AP:  It is our pleasure!  Thank you for sharing and giving us some insight on your passions and profession.

To see more of Kris’ work go to his Altpick page.

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Who Put the “Pro” in Procrastination? Thoughts about Time-management for Artists

©George Mattei

©George Mattei

by Oliver Wetter

I never was a procrastinator, in fact; things couldn’t go faster for me.

Today I look calm on the outside but my real impetus is to get things done and in the most effective way possible.

I can say this now, but this self-awareness came after a long journey and experience of being disappointed with our education, society and the system as a whole.

In years when I worked on the assembly line and try to fit into the 8-to-5 job, this restlessness made me ill, literally and physically. I had a hard time to become mentally calm, to find my inner pace and balance.

Since 2009 I work freelance and since 2010 we have a daughter, and I have never been so busy and never been so calm at once, how is that?

This blog post is about my personal experience on how to manage time more effective and still having fun. Chances are that you – the reader – find something useful in it.

What is Time?

For me, time is valuable, a precious gift that was given to me from my parents, it probably lasts the lifetime of an average human and is limited to just one. I embrace what I can do in this time and I´m thankful that I´m healthy enough to enjoy and share my time with like-minded people.

Quality Time or Waste?

©Tim O'Brien

©Tim O’Brien

I found that quality time is for every person something different, for me it is time to be with loved ones as also being with my artist self and create art for me or others.

Marketing and self promotion was never a thing I loved, but it is valuable to a business like a compass to a hiker, I learned to embrace these tasks much more. And so I enjoy interacting with fellow artists and clients.

Earlier in my life I had this feeling that 8 hours of my day were simply wasted. Now there are at least 12 hours a day that I enjoy.

Time-Thieves and Things that Seriously Steal your Time

There is something that I observed for quite a while and found no workaround except for keeping my eyes open all the time. For what you ask? For things or persons who steal your time. It’s obvious that we waste a lot of time on friends who we thought were friends but when we are in need they don´t care, the client who wants the best thing but won´t pay anything, technical things that always break, a car that only works half the time… you get the idea.

It’s not only the time we waste on such things, but also a waste of emotional labor that would have been better applied to people around us who deserve it.

Call them vampires, they sit everywhere lurking and waiting for a victim to turn to. Just be no victim.

The Myth of Multitasking

©Alicia Buelow

©Alicia Buelow

You’ve heard of that myth that women can better multitask than men, it’s not true, at least it is not recommended at all.

If you have a hands-free-set, you can do a phone call and make household work or drive a car while doing so. That is because speaking, listening and doing routine work like drawing or household work is mundane enough to use less brain power. As soon as our capacity of things we do simultaneously is challenging our brain, we loose information/memory. You can also hear a useful E-book or a podcast while working on a computer instead of music this is both valuable and time-saving. But don´t try writing an email and listening to your wife, just don´t do it.

Online = Procrastination?

©Garth Glazier

©Garth Glazier

No not really, at least for me.

I sure use Twitter and Facebook and this blog, but I see updating these as a gift and duty to give the community something back. A contribution if you want so.

Sure, if you have a deadline approaching and feel tied to twitter or play games instead, than it can be a serious problem, one that should be solved before it is too late.
Changing habits by making the things you have to do easier is a good trick. Let´s say you want to do more workout, figure out one easy to do exercise that only costs a minute or two. From there it is easier to do something more.

The TIA -“Think-In-Advance” Approach

©Tim Bower

©Tim Bower

I use to be a pragmatic all my time, so it comes naturally for me to think in advance whenever I have to go my route or one way. Taking the used coffee-mug, the empty water bottle and the laptop down into the kitchen after waking up, to fill the dishwasher, the bag for empty bottles and to read my news, then, time is saved and it is simple as that. Multiply these over 5 times a day, a week, a month and a year, you can guess how much time can be saved for important things.

Here is a list of everyday things you can do to save time for important things:

  • First of all: learn to set priorities, otherwise the fancy stuff listed below isn´t going to work
  • If you can´t solve a problem at first, get away from it, and use the “anger-time” for something useful (exercise for example), get back to it at a later time with a fresh pair of eyes and mindset.
  • Try to get the right friends, clients, roommates, partners, etc it saves a huge amount of time.
  • Get the right mindset, that helps you turn down the lizard-brain and achieve your goals.
  • Learn about the GTD -(Get Things Done) method
  • Think (not plan!) eventualities ahead as far as possible, for the next hour, for the next day and so on
  • Write sticky notes and don´t read them, do the things so you can throw the notes away after the “things-are-done
  • Do multitasking, wherever possible and whenever no quality or security has to suffer through it
  • Avoid time-thieves, bloodsuckers, vampires and time-robbing things that break all the time, buy stuff that works, not breaks, even if it is more expensive, it will save you time.
  • Don´t drive faster, plan ahead and take the fastest route instead.
  • Keep your mail-inbox clean, make use of the GTD method and use an  e-mail program that supports smart inbox handling like Gmail for example
  • Don´t work just hard, and also don´t just work smart. Work smarter and harder and also put emotional labor in everything you do.
  • Don´t do everything alone, learn to delegate and to outsource tasks you can assign to someone else
  • Don´t procrastinate and thrash yourself at the end of a project, do it in advance or at the beginning
  • Find a job that is fun to do and you never have to work a single day in your life (quoted)
  • Be rather active than passive (limit television for example) a passive lifestyle is counterproductive and unhealthy too
  • Shop online if the city is crowded and parking a horror
  • Eliminate distractions, if necessary, use a tool for computer related work that helps you to focus better
  • Be patient and forget about sent letters, this is the key to stay calm while doing all the things above

Below you find some valuable sources about time-mangement for freelancers, I highly recommend also the video from Randy Pausch about time-management, I promise these are the best spent 70 minutes about that topic ever.–fsw-104

Feel free to comment if you have any additional suggestions or share your own experience about that topic.What is time for you, or how do you solve problems regarding work, freelancing and time?

Contributed by Illustrator Oliver Wetter

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Happy 2015 :: “Explore. Dream. Discover”

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.  So throw off the bowlines.  Sail away from the safe harbor.  Catch the trade winds in your sails.  Explore. Dream. Discover.” — Mark Twain and members wish you a healthy, happy and prosperous 2015!

To see more of the artists’ work, please go to

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Happy Holidays From and Members and members wish you a Happy, Healthy and Joyous Holiday Season!

To see more of the artists’ work please visit their Altpick page:

Selina AlkoCesare Bellassi, Jack Black, Phil Bliss, Nicola Boccaccini, Davide Bonazzi, Francesco BongiorniRichard BorgeMichael Crichton, Kyle Dreier, Lynne Foster, Paul GarlandMichael Gellatly, Sandy Gin,  Garth Glazier, Johanna Goodman, Kevin Hauff, Mark Hess, Robert Houser, David Johnson, Chris Lyons, Angela Martini, Tracy Mattocks, Erin McGill, Mark McGinnis, Mark HoffmannBrian Minnich, Jane Mjolsness, John Neitzel, Alessandra Olanow, Ken Orvidas, Clare Owen, Gant PowellSean Qualls, Lucie Rice, Thom Sevalrud, Dave Shafer, Ali Smith, Zave Smith, Greg Stevenson, Kate Taylor, Huan Tran, Kate Turning, Alexei Vella, Mark Weber, Ellen Weinstein, Oliver Wetter, Torne White, Rob Wilson, Kimberley Wiseman, David Zaitz, Tim Zeltner

To see more go to

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