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So, in spite of popular opinion, I am not actually dead. 

I understand that I haven't really posted here since 2007, and that you DO NOT do that online these days, and I would like to sincerely apologize to those of you who legitimately worried about me. 

To try to explain something complicated simply: we'll just go with the simple fact that during my senior year at RISD, I underwent a rather large "course correction," during which I changed my major focus from concept or fantasy illustration to academic and informative illustration (with a focus on natural history) and museum art fabrication. This was precipitated by the rather nasty experience of my father's relapse with cancer, subsequent bone marrow transplant and difficult recovery. I spent my senior year with my nose to the grindstone (making a specific targeted portfolio), and withdrawing from many parts of my life before that.

Since then my work has been so different that I've been unsure whether or not it had a place among my previous more whimsical works (or on deviantart at all), and my new focus absorbed my full attention to the point that I simply walked away from online self-promotion in favor of joining a team and making real, physical work. 

I am now a principle artist working for a museum art production company here in Minneapolis, Minnesota--Blue Rhino Studio. We produce artwork for museums, zoos, aquariums, visitor/nature/history and cultural centers around the country. I'm part of a small (but mighty!) team of talented people, who I enjoy working with every day (for the most part). The sculptures, dioramas, models, displays, exhibits etc that we produce are usually a product of the team as a whole, so much so, that I have a hard time finding parts that I feel the right to claim individual responsibility for, and thus have not posted much of my current work anywhere online (although I consistently work 40-50 hours/week).

I'm considering posting some things to deviantart again, as I have some personal projects (crafts, sketches, random stuff) that I am doing on the side that I think could belong here. If you get a chance to check out the studio's page or some of these other links, I'd be interested in getting feedback as to whether this type of collaborative work could/should be posted to deviantart (with company watermarks/explanations of my part), or if it just belongs on the company site. 

I am also thinking of posting to tumblr, twitter, or possibly blogspot with current studio work, and I will post that info once I get my ducks in a row.

For now, you can find more information and my professional work:

At my personal site:

And at the Studio's page at, well as in museums, zoos, and visitor centers across the country.

If you'd like to get in contact with me, please use my gmail account (Bzaiken(at), or facebook at

Add a Comment:
kailavmp Featured By Owner May 19, 2015
You are getting a watch... Specifically for stalking out the time when you decide to share new art with us! And I am definitely not the only one here who enjoys natural history/scientific/museum/other "more serious" art!  True, we seem to be a minority here on dA, but still there is lots of us! And the more art of this kind here is, the more people will have a chance to fall in love with this type of art. :)
Jezarae Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow your work is inspiring.  I always wished to paint murals on my walls when I own a house.  They are so large though that it is so intimidating (and I bet expensive for all the paint!)  I hope to make my art as detailed as yours one day!
Eastrider Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2013
I encourage you to post them. That's what Deviantart is for :)
ElementalSpirits Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I personally think that the paintings on your personal website are incredibly inspiring. They make me want to grab a paintbrush and start painting just staring at them so I really hope that you decide to start sharing them here.

I also love the prehistoric reconstructions you work on and I can't see any reason why DA would object to you posting them here as I've seen many collaborative and commercial works posted without issue. As long as your colleges do not object and it's clear in your description that you are part of a team etc. I really can't see that anyone would have a problem with it.
Postmorteum Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2013
falia Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
The work that the studio does look absolutely amazing, I'm impressed! Would love to see some of your new work.
Jcat4ever2 Featured By Owner Jul 9, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Glad you're back! Your artwork is beautiful regardless of whether it's fantasy or academic. I'd really like to see more of your work, so I'll follow your Tumblr. May I ask what it is?

Perhaps you could post some of your stuff on here, as well, because (as your watcher) we really love what you illustrate. :)
Samishii-Kami Featured By Owner Jul 9, 2013  Student General Artist
Wow. I mean I loved your work before, and I still do! But my mind is just blown with your website portfolio. Especially the murals! I really do hope you share with us again!
What I've seen some artists do with regards to "company" art, is that they don't post anything until the company has both published the work already (especially for concept art pieces for novels/movies/etc) and approved the individual pieces. I generally see them watermarked with either the artist or company logo too. They are never too big of files (to keep people from saving large pictures for easier editing or printing) and are never downloadable.
Collaborations shouldn't be a problem either so long as every person involved agrees and it is explained specifically which parts you were involved with.
lady-cybercat Featured By Owner Jul 9, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Wow!! I hope you do decide to share things with us here on DA.
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