Birthplace: Los Angeles, California
Birthdate: March 5, 1970
Hometown: Whittier, California
Lives in: Honolulu, Hawaii
I am a cartoonist, graphic artist, web designer and filmmaker born and raised in the Los Angeles area. I have been drawing pretty much my entire life. My earliest memories of drawing are of preschool paintings when I was 4 years old and drawing the railroad track designs from the legendary TV dance show "Soul Train" on every sheet of paper I could find. I started drawing Smurfs when the original Hanna-Barbera TV series aired Saturday mornings on NBC during the 1980's, and from there I developed my own drawing style. If you look very carefully, a lot of my original characters (OC's) have a Smurf-like appearance. But unlike the Smurfs, they actually have necks.
I live in beautiful Honolulu, Hawaii where I graduated from Hawaii Pacific University with a Master of Arts in Communication in December 2016. Relocating from L.A. to Honolulu was the biggest move of my entire life, leaving behind everything I've known in Southern California and the American mainland for a college in the middle of the Pacific. But I chose this path to ultimately start a new career in media writing or public relations. And what a better place to study than in paradise?
My thesis at HPU was "All About Honu", an online series of short documentary videos on Hawaiian green sea turtles for Malama na Honu (Care for the Turtles), a conservation group here on the island of Oahu.
Hawaii has been home for almost five years and I truly love it here! The people, family culture and aloha spirit are what keep me here, and having great beaches and majestic mountains a short bus trip away help, too. I'm also interested in retrocomputing and vintage video games. I have emulators for the Atari 2600 gaming console, Radio Shack TRS-80 Model III and TRS-80 Color Computer on my laptop, as well as a working Atari Flashback 2 console.
What's on my DeviantArt?
Original Characters: Ricki Lee & Tony, Alpha Girl, Javier the Sloth. Yes, a sloth.
The Smurfs: It's what first brought me to DeviantArt in 2013. Specializing in Smurfette and Vexy having fun as sisters and best friends. Also in Grouchy and Vexy as a couple, aka "Grexy"; Smurfette as the assistant leader of Smurf Village; the Smurflings adopting Vexy as their own "smurfy aunty"; including OC's from other Deviants with the official Smurfs; and the new female Smurfs introduced in the 2017 animated film Smurfs: The Lost Village. I have been drawing the Smurfs since 2013 and Deviants continue to discover and fave my work.
My Little Pony: Two of a Kind: Far and away my most popular drawings ever. The ponies from the animated TV series My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic are together in Ponyville with their human counterparts from the spinoff series My Little Pony: Equestria Girls in a combined universe centered around Princess Twilight Sparkle as a Friendship Studies teacher at Canterlot High School and Sunset Shimmer as one of her human students and Princess Celestia's adopted daughter. To my delight, these crossovers have been well received by bronies and pegasisters (teenage and adult fans) all over the MLP fandom. I am the resident MLP fan artist at Comic Jam Hawaii and draw a crowd (no pun intended) every time I draw Twilight and the gang.
Crossovers: Intermixing the Smurfs, My Little Pony and my OC's with other franchises such as Gravity Falls, Hanna-Barbera and real-life celebrities.
Faith and Volunteering
I am a Christian -- a follower of Jesus Christ -- and worship at Calvary Chapel Downtown, a small church few blocks up the street from HPU. Through Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa, California I went on a relief trip to New Jersey in February 2013 to assist victims of Hurricane Sandy clean out and rebuild their homes.
Since moving to Honolulu, I have volunteered at an after-school program run by City Church Honolulu for children in public housing, teaching them how to draw the Smurfs, My Little Pony, cartoon animals and other characters.
Favorite Ways of Wasting My Time
Twice a month I participate in Comic Jam Hawaii, a Facebook group of local artists that meets at Pearlridge Center in Aiea, Hawaii to draw, collaborate and share our artwork with the local community. I am the only Smurf and My Little Pony artist in the group so far, and MLP fans tend to herd around me to see my pony drawings.
What Motivates My Deviations?
I try to keep my artwork and deviations lighthearted, warm and friendly. I love puns, malapropisms, wordplay and dry, deadpan Maud Pie-style humor. Maybe it's because I'm getting older, but I've grown tired of the sarcasm and viciousness that dominates most animated shows on Cartoon Network, Nick, Fox, Amazon Prime and Netflix. I used to love that type of humor when I was younger, but like me it gets old after a while. Occasionally I deal with serious subjects, such as grief and guilt in my 2014 Smurf fan comic "Remembering Squeaky", but even then I keep it gentle and kind.
I am humbled and encouraged that deviants of all ages and backgrounds around the world are following my works and are among my biggest cheerleaders, including my recent graduate program at HPU.
I'm happy it's finally a go after years of delays. It doesn't premiere in North America until about September on Nickelodeon. It looks good in the trailers, and it's not imitating either the classic Hanna-Barbera show or Peyo's own comics. We'll see how it smurfs.