Wednesday, May 23, 2018

A Mini-Vacation (and Some Sketching)!
Just got back from some days in Rocky Mountain National Park--
making sure the visit was before the expected 3.5 million people hit the place this summer.
It rained in the afternoons and evenings, so I worked on ideas like this in the sketchbook.
Hello there :]
Most mornings in the park were sunny like this.
Late mornings were getting cloudy...
...and we got off the mountain before this one hit. 
Back in the cabin...
...while it rained, I drew ideas for a bunch of little clay sculpts I'll be working on as part of a year-long project.
On the hikes I photographed some wildflowers...
...and other glorious vegetation...
...and later drew more characters...
...some of which got a lot of added ink.
 Today I've returned to my studio at Helikon Gallery. I like to leave an unfinished project whenever I go on vacation or whenever I leave the studio--that way I get right back into the swing of production. This colorful death-image will be a wood cut-out for the same year-long project. (I'll write more about that in future posts.)
Glad to be working on art again, but I miss ol' Long's Peak already.

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Box o' Drawings and other WIPs

Every once in awhile a backlog of works that need finishing happens. Even though I try to complete each work before getting too far along on another, now's one of those times things got pretty much out of hand.

Sorry if my (lack of) video skills got you car-sick--but thanks for staying with my ol' blog :)

Btw, my original art is available for purchase here: 

and some originals and miscellaneous products here:

Your purchase from either helps a lot and is much appreciated!

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Art Critic--Another Death Image
Art Critic (detail crop). Mixed media (Colored pencil, India ink, white gouache) on toned paper.
Art Critic

What can I say--I like drawing skeletons  :D

Thanks for the visit!

Thursday, May 3, 2018

A Little Tour of Denver's Helikon Gallery

First off--Thursday, May 3rd, from 6-10 pm; the opening reception for these two incredible shows!

Come across the 38th & Blake light rail bridge--Helikon Gallery is right behind the white, Ardent Mills Denver mill.

See that turquoise spot of color? That's Helikon Gallery, nestled in among the industrial and new buildings which populate the cool RiNo District.

Here it is--sort of my home-away-away-from-home. It's called Helikon Gallery and Studios because it houses two big gallery and event spaces, plus artist studios upstairs. My studio is # 210!

Right now I'm getting my studio ready for tonights reception and tomorrow night's First Friday--and it'll soon look great.
Tom Sarmo at Helikon

Why should you visit? Well, here's a shot of one of the galleries within Helikon...

...and the other. And...

...the halls, both upstairs and downstairs, are full of ever-changing artworks! Also...

...there's a shop--featuring changing mini-shows, art, prints, coffee, refreshments, art books, art pins, and art toys to purchase. You can hit this amazing place and spend a whole day or evening looking at unique, illustrative art for hours!
And you can meet amazing artists like John Vogl...
...John Van Horn...

...and even play experiential video games by Bearwarp!

Not in Denver? You can buy art from Helikon online.

Here's the gallery link:
Helikon Gallery & Studios

So come down to Helikon Gallery for one of the most unique gallery experiences anywhere--seriously!

Thanks for checking it out :)

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Mischievous Death
Skeletons and skulls have been an intermittent subject for me. The idea of "memento mori" appeals for certain, but many death-images have been swirling up from my unconscious mind since last September for some reason.
While death is a serious subject, and I sometimes treat it as such (see previous post ), the idea of a mischievous personification intrigues me. Hence this work-in-progress.
The first two photos above are drawings done on slightly textured, brown toned paper. I began this one on 300 lb. watercolor paper (because watercolor was to be the main media). I like to sketch out the picture using red pencil.
I fixed up the red sketch with a fine brush dipped in india ink...
...then toned the paper using Quinacridone Gold watercolor. Next, highlights with white acrylic paint. All the cross-hatching followed with a crow-quill pen and ink, and blue-green inks accented the skeleton's eyes and pin.
Sometimes but not always, I sketch out little ideas first.

So much for death--I'm not one to delve into much philosophy in this blog; save that for quiet conversation over a beer :)

Thanks for checking out my art!

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Something a Bit Different
Timekeeper (detail). Mixed media (pen and ink, red pencil, white ink).

I worked on many art pieces this past year, some colorful, some storybook-like, and some humorous. But last September some darker images were stirring inside me.

When I was invited to participate in an un-traditional landscape show--Otherworlds--at Helikon Gallery, I worked on  Timekeeper and its companion piece...
...Musician. Mixed media (pen and ink, red pencil, white ink).
Musician (detail)

The original work, Timekeeper, has sold, but quality prints are available.

Musician is available as an original 8" x 10", framed as shown above, and also as a quality print. 

For information, please contact

Phone: 720-502-5635

 Thank you in advance for your support of the arts, artists, and wonderful galleries like Helikon.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Illustrative Art?

Listening for Elves
Mixed media (India ink and colored acrylic ink on panel).

My art has been described as whimsical, storytelling, and eclectic.
But I'm most proud to have it called "Illustrative Art", because illustration is my background, my passion, and my occupation. I love all types of illustration, and believe deeply that illustration belongs in galleries and on the walls of homes--not just in books or magazines.

Acrylic on panel.

And I'm very proud to have my work showing and available at Helikon Gallery in Denver. Helikon is full of illustrative art, and because I have an upstairs studio there, I get to see and be inspired by their ever-changing exhibitions, and by the works of the other illustrators who have studios there.

Grumpy Dwarf
Mixed media (India ink, white ink, and colored acrylic inks.)

The three pieces above--and more-- are at Helikon Gallery. Here's the link to all my available works:

In the coming weeks I'll be posting more about this famous gallery in Denver, and I hope the posts will inspire you to find your way there--to be inspired by all the illustrative artwork Helikon has to offer!

Thanks in advance :)

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Another Goblin and a Creature-in-Progress
Working on lots of new characters--and many of them turning into wood cut-outs--for a new, long-term project. Here's one!
And here's another--a work-in-progress.

I'll keep you posted, as more are on the way :)

Thanks for the visit!

Monday, March 19, 2018

Goofy Goblins in Pen and Ink
I'm working with pen and ink lately, and pretty much exclusively. Always have loved it, and am enjoying every minute of my studio time.
Much of the works are goofy goblins, but I've done a few creepier pieces recently too, which I'll post next time.
Many of these are pieces for larger, more complicated works-in-progress, and I'm excited each time a new one flows out onto the paper.
They are all done on the same brown paper with the same colored pencil, brushpen, and pen and ink. They just look different depending on the light under which they're photographed.

Thanks for reading--hope you'll check back as the works progress!

Monday, February 26, 2018

Nahcotta Gallery: Enormous Tiny Art 23!
On the Path. (Pre-colored detail of the larger, now-finished work.) Pen and ink plus colored inks.

Pleased to announce the opening of the Enormous Tiny Art Show (23) at Nahcotta Gallery in Portsmouth, NH
And I'm excited to have eight works in the show--including On the Path!
The Hatter Before the King (detail crop). Pen and ink plus colored inks.

Even though the opening is not until March 2, you can read a bit about me and purchase art now online here:

And see all the sweet artworks by great artists here:

Thanks for looking and supporting art and artists!
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