The Captain's Blog #3 - Gut'n The Cap'n!

Good'day me Matey's!!

Originally I wanted to name this post "The Anatomy of This Artist" but I didn't think that was piratey enough and ya know meeee, if it ain't got barnacles, it aint tha' Cap'n's (really? That's not even grammatically correct! Ha!)

Alright, this post is to be an introduction to your Captain and a way for me to share a little of me'self. I will be discussing a some about my professional career and how i spend my creative free time. I will also discuss some of my many inspirations, God and my family being the highest. So settle yer selves down and prepare to be entertained and informed. This may be a long post but I pray you enjoy it and I will do my best not to completely bore you!

First, my name is Derrick Utz. I am a husband of an absolutely amazing woman and the father of two beautiful stars that fell straight from the heavens. My son just turned 6 and my daughter is 2 and a half. Daily my family amazes me and I fall more in love with them all of the time.

7 years ago we moved to the bigger city to give me access to an art school and that is where my professional career was born. I graduated with an associates in graphic design and began to be a huge fan of the retail and editorial design and marketing. Now, after getting my degree I am blessed with a career in design in a marketing department for a manufacturing company who sells product all over the world. I work on many new types of collateral often.

Personal Creativity:
Even with all of this professional creativity, my illustration talents and preferences are not tapped nearly as much as I would like them to be. That is why I still went home for many years and continued to create illustrations ranging in subject matter from monsters and epic creatures to superheroes and beautiful maidens. Often I created characters that defined a certain archetype and every now and then, ones that you just couldn't figure out. I have drawn comics and fantasy art since I can remember holding a pencil. This is something that I also truly have a passion in. This is also one of the reasons that I am involved with both a potential comic project and developing my own children's stories.

I will soon do a sketch dump of different portfolio pieces. They will eventually end up on my website but that is currently still under construction.


Comics and Fantasy art:
Top Cow Productions and Marc Silvestri:
       Comic are a very important art form to me. They are a kind of window into different places and situations. Since I was a young teen there have been many artists that inspired me. A few have stuck. Marc Silvestri is one and Michael Turner (an apprentice of his, mentioned below) was another. Their properties and approaches of epic realism made the characters tangible to me. I used to sit and stare at Marc's work trying to break down just how he did it. He has only gotten better over the years and founded a smaller, independent comic company called Top Cow. In this studio he still takes in promising fledgling artists and helps train them to the next level. There are many pro artist who credit him for their training. He loves to give back.
Kenneth Rockafort is one of Top Cow's new artists and he is just amazing!

Aspen Comics and Michael Turner:
       Aspen Comics was started by a former apprentice of Marc Silvestri. H was a major part of one of a few of my favorite characters, Witchblade and Fathom. I have been told that his style can bee seen all over my finished work. He was a huge inspiration to me and the world felt a loss when he passed away so young from cancer.

Adam Hughes: I admire Adam for his ability to use simple lines to create beautiful characters. He is very efficient with his line work because knows what he is drawing very well.

Lora Innes: Lora is the writer and artist for a web and print comic called The Dreamer. It is a beautifully created tale about a girl who dreams of the Revolutionary War every night. Lora is also a host of Paper Wings Podcast and contributes her vast knowledge to other artists like myself.

Clayburn Moore: Clayburn is a Sculptor. His company creates pieces from a variety of subject matter and comic materials always stop me in my tracks.

Children's Books and Movies
Movies: Disney/Pixar
       Almost anything produced from these companies I have loved. Now that I have children, I have an excuse to watch them more but my wife still laughs at me when I go around the house singing songs from the musicals. I have raised my children on the quality and content of movies like Cars and Wall-e. They get to see how much creativity can accomplish.

WormWorld Saga: This is an online comic that I just recently discovered. It is written and illustrated by Daniel Lieske and I very excited about it. I greatly admire the story and the art that he is producing.

Chris Oatley: Chris is a Character designer and all around art guru for Disney. He is one of the hosts for the podcast of a new creative community called Paper Wings Podcast. He loves to teach and is an amazing digital painter. I am honored to know him.

There are, of coarse, many other artists and material that keep me inspired on a daily bases but these are the ones at the front of my mind right now. Please let em know if you have any questions or comments.

Till next Post me Maties, best wishes!

Captain Dutz

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