Pick Away

Note: This post here is an unpaid commission done just for fun. I am currently accepting commissions, such as book covers and interiors, portraits, editorials, character designs etc. bryanbeus@gmail.com if you are interested.

Update 10/31/12: The winner is chosen! Click here to find out.

Hey everyone, I’ve got some ideas on the table for a new art series and I’d like you to be a part.

All you gotta do is look through the concepts for the series and vote (in the comments below) on which one you’d like to watch as a work-in-progress. Between now and midnight on October 19th I’m going to collect votes. I’ll do the painting that you think would be most fun to watch first, and I’m going to post it as I paint so you can follow along. At certain intervals (such as what are called the “value study” and “color study”) I’m going to open it up for input again. It’ll be like a “web-i-verse” art director and painter relationship.

Here are the concepts. Take a look through, pick one out, and post your vote (and you’re welcome to say what you like/dislike/think about that one, and any of the others also).


 Image #1: 

“Michael Earning His Halo”

Behind the mask of the puppet (left) is a strange creature:



Image #2: 

“Cherubim and a Flaming Sword”

In the old testament, Genesis 3:24, the Lord turns Adam and Eve out of the garden and then places “Cherubim and a Flaming Sword” to guard the way to the tree of life.

I’ve wondered why all the cherubim and the sword have to be European. Could they be Asian? How about an Asian and a European?



Image #3:


An Asian girl, wearing silk clothes, with a pretty seashell gnawing at the side of her head.

I had a friend awhile ago who, when she was a teenager, worked as a Disneyland princess. She told me that to this day she still has nightmares in which she’s getting let go because she’s no longer pretty enough.



Image #4
“The Intellectual”

Whenever brilliance comes along, it’s fun to hop in and take a ride.



Image #5:

“The Pearl Thief”
At a fancy party (where all the smart people are keeping their mouths shut) the pearl thief gets away again!
On her banner reads in latin, “You say it, I steal it.”
She’s holding a pearl under her arm, having just stolen it from the foolish gentleman who opened his mouth.
Some people are wisely keeping their mouths shut, and some aren’t paying attention.



Image #6

“Fish Tank of Fairies”

Just a fish tank of fairies (you do a few things differently when you make a fairy fish tank: first, no water; second, put in a flower-fountain that pours honey-water for the fairies to drink).



Image #7

A man hangs in the sky from the disc of the moon, waiting for it to open.

I suppose there’s a lot of meanings I personally see in this one. One of them is that in life, often times we get as close to we can to whatever Truth we can see, and then we just wait. So it is with this man, who has abandoned his hopes for worldly success in his search.



Image #8

“Children Playing”

Children playing somewhere in the ocean catch and eat the notes an older boy plays from his flute.



Alright, that’s it! Cast your vote below, and all comments are appreciated.


Update 10/31/12: The winner is chosen! Click here to find out.

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  • Thanks everyone for your votes. I’ll count them up this weekend, add them to the ones received on facebook, and we’ll see which one won this Monday.
    ‘Till then — B

  • Raquel

    I like them all and love several – but if I have to vote for just one, I choose #8.

  • I vote 6, 2, 8 in that order… I LOVE the man “waiting” as well but that concept would need explaining to the viewer and the others are easier for us “lesser creative deep types.” YOU ARE SO EXTREMELY CREATIVE AND I AM NOT EVEN BIASED!!!!

  • Kimberly

    #6… A decision made independently of previous comments. 🙂

  • Brianne

    These are all amazing!! I am really intrigued by 5 & 6 (no order). My brain is running wild with versions of stories for each as well as a series of paintings for each. Can’t wait to see which you one of the 8 you pick!!

  • Allie Bond

    I like 7 and 8 (if I had to pick, I’d pick 8)

  • Jared

    I like #1 best and then #7

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  • Landon

    Children Playing

  • Corinne

    “The Pearl Thief” because of multiple interpretations or “Waiting”: in it’s simplicity, hours of thought could evolve. All very fun though. Would be happy to see any.

  • In order of preference, I vote 8, 2, 6. 🙂 Looking forward to this!

  • I am so impressed with your talent! I loved so many of them it was hard to decide on which one or two I liked the most, but I did so here they are. I liked #4 The Intellectual and #6 The Fairy’s in the Fish Tank. Best of luck, can’t wait to watch the actual work come to fruition.

  • As an (unusual) writer myself, who sometimes struggles to find inspiration, the concept behind The Intellectual is most appealing to me.

    If you choose to paint Cherubim and a Flaming Sword, my response to your description was, “Why not Middle Eastern?” After all that is the culture from which the Old Testament (and New Testament, for that matter) originate from.

  • Rebecca Curtis

    I really like “Cherubim and a Flaming Sword” and “Children Playing” – but all of them are amazing! 🙂

  • Jana

    I would love to follow along with Fish Tank of Fairies! I always love your work Brian!

  • Katarina Jambresic

    “Cherubim and a Flaming Sword” and “Fish Tank of Fairies” are tied and then “Children Playing”. I’m glad Basil agrees…

  • Britta

    Fish take of fairies is my favourite and the second is the children playing. Both of these sketches have the most potential due to the detail and engagement of the eye on the page.

  • #2, #7

  • Katherine Gee Perrone

    IN order:

    I love the fish tank and children playing. They have so much whimsy. I also love the pearl thief for that story aspect of it. The Waiting would be beautiful to see.

  • Leah

    1 and 7

  • amy

    6, 8, 2. awesome.

  • Definitely… children playing. Fanciful, wonderful.

  • Jacqueline Stephens

    Michael earning his halo or children playing

  • Clayton Watts

    #2 is definitely my favorite. Then #4 🙂

  • Totally going with Fishtank and Children Playing.

  • I love the concept and implied power behind “Cherubim and a Flaming Sword.” After that, #6 (Very intriguing), #7 (I imagine it’s the most personally meaningful to you), and #8 (Delightful!).

    I may contact you about a commission next year (I hope).

  • John

    First choice number 1; second choice number 8.

  • Christine Bowers

    #1 has the most mystery in it for me. # 1 & #5, for developing into full blown stories, then 6.

  • Shauna Watts

    #6 Fish Tank of Fairies. I really love this idea!

  • “Children Playing” is my favorite. They are all very good though.

  • Bob

    Children playing or fairy fishtank! I think those are fun relatable concepts. The man hanging on the moon is cool, I and I really like the idea, but I didn’t get it until I read about the drawing. The moon was a little hard to recognize in this current iteration.

  • I like #2 and #7 best.

  • I’m going with “Waiting” or “The Intellectual” (#4 and #6) If I had to choose just one… then I’d go with #4. Love the conceptual ideas most… and well who doesn’t love fairies but truth be told… professionally speaking…Editorial is a stronger market all the way around. It would serve as a more useful promo piece down the road… but what do i know ; )

  • Tristen Lawrence

    I thought the Waiting photo was most striking, however I think you have several ideas here that are worth developing. I love the children one, too, obviously, since my world is full of children these days. 🙂

  • Sue Birrell

    I like 6, 4, 2 (in that order). I’m real curious what you’ll do with these. I know that other ones you’ve done have so much depth and meaning. It will be fun to see, no matter what you choose.

  • Kathleen

    Great sketches, but like others, I’d like to see the Fish Tank of Fairies come to fruition!

  • Hannah vb

    Fish tank o’ fairies 🙂 Loving them all though! It’s hard to choose when each one is so creative!

  • I vote for number 6.

  • Maria Williams

    I’d say “The Pearl Thief” and then “Fish Tank of Fairies”. Love the concepts of all of them!

  • Samson

    I really liked seven and Amber likes number eight. 🙂

  • Basil Williams

    “Cherubim and a Flaming Sword” and “Fish Tank of Fairies.” I think those are my favorites.

  • Jessica Chen

    I am interesting in #6,1,7,8. (priority as the order)

  • madison

    #6, i think… good luck!!

  • Lance

    I like waiting and the intellectual.

  • Christina

    I’d really like to see “Cherubim and a Flaming Sword” and “Fish Tank of Fairies” as final products, but depending on what idea you want to present, I was most interested in “The Intellectual” and “Waiting.” Of those two, I liked “The Intellectual” more, for its lighthearted feel (and uplifting mind). 😉