Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Update: Above The Timberline

Greg Manchess

After a week at IMC with a fantastic roster of instructors and a bunch of wonderful illustration and gallery students, I’m back to painting away on Timberline. I had hoped to get a few started while there, but alas, the students come first, so I only used one to work on for a demo.


We had a great time talking paint together. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed as much through a painting demo. I shared how my mind works while laying down strokes. I think everyone was a little surprised and elated that things don’t always go as planned and I have to think on the fly. Just like they do. Just like I did when starting out, and still have to even now.

I’m about to hole up in Oregon for a full month of focused painting. I’ve got 60 more spreads to conquer to be finished. Not sure I can make it now, but the paint is feeling good, and so are the characters, shapes, values, light, scenes, etc.

Way station

My main characters have been shot for reference, and July will be spent painting most of them, including Mike Mignola, creator of Hellboy and guest instructor at IMC, playing the part of Sam.

I’m also beginning to refine some of the more complex visuals, like inside the Polaris Geographic Society and…beneath the lost city!


  1. 60 in a month seems insane by any *human* measure, and just contemplating taking on a project of that scale makes me want to hide under the covers - but based on what you've shown us in class, on all the incredible work you've accomplished so far with the book, I totally believe you can do it, Greg. You have the respect, goodwill and support of your peers. We know you can do it...

    It's going to be glorious! Go! Go!

    Just finished a snow cave scene with sleeping polar bears yesterday. I also seems that the publisher may not be able to put it all together in time. But I'll try to hold up my end of the deal.

  3. Good luck Greg. 60 is a lot but in a month??? basically 2 a day that is a lot!!! Looking forward to the book hope they can give you more time. Last thing you want to do is rush your magnum opus and this will TOTALLY be that. The paintings look great that you teased so far- that way station is very cool, and with a MIgnola cameo what can go wrong? happy painting!

  4. Hey Greg, it was a pleasure to watch your demo, and I can't wait to see how it comes out (and how Mike looks when you're done with him)!

  5. Hey Greg, it was a pleasure to watch your demo, and I can't wait to see how it comes out (and how Mike looks when you're done with him)!

  6. Thanks, Matt!

    60 by the end of August. So, one a day.

    Not so bad, right? : )

  7. What a treat it was to see some of the work you've already done as well as the works in progress. It was a relief to see you deal with a little friction and navigate out. You make it look so easy. It is not. Thanks for being so generous at IMC.