Thursday, October 22, 2009

Love Therapy

Here is a preview of some work I did for Love Therapy in Italy for their Fall/Winter 2010-11 collection. I'm not sure but I think it'll be a t-shirt.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Playgirl...I.F. Fast

She lives a FAST pace life as a jet setting's a stretch but just go with it

Monday, October 12, 2009

A still life photo from Guatemala

I'm in Guatemala for a few weeks so I'm not posting as much work as I normally do but here is a "sculpture" I made out of two pebbles, a little ink, a flower, and a vine.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Figure Studies

Some of my figure studies from The Society of Illustrators here in NYC.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

My first 100% vector image

After many years of bad attitude on my part I have finally forced my self to learn how to work in Adobe Illustrator. This is my first piece that is 100% digital and I have to say....and I never thought i would say this....I LOVE vector art. It's so easy to play around and experiment with your drawings!
I understand that it looks different from my normal work but isn't it still so cool? I'm really excited about it...

Thursday, September 17, 2009

J. David McKenney interview by Corbin Chamberlin

When I think of J. David McKenney, a distinguished NYC fashion illustrator who’s drawn countless celebrities and for numerous magazines and designers, I think of chic young ladies and the most impeccably drawn clothing and features. McKenney gives us fantasy in his work, unlike the trends fashion illustratiors can follow, drafting lifeless, quick, thoughtless sketches for designers and clients. In McKenney's pieces, mixed media designs made of watercolors, pencil, pens, pastel, colored pencils and digital manipulations, you can almost feel the fibers in the clothing and smell the Chanel perfume the subject is wearing. He keeps his work youthful and hip, but always gives a nod to romanticism and whimsy. He has drawn for Mariah Carey advertising campaigns, Heatherette, Elizabeth Arden, Scholastic Books, Women's Wear Daily, MAC Cosmetics, and the list goes on. I had the oppurtunity to interview J. David McKenney about his past, inspirations and more.

What made you decide to go into Illustration?
I don't think I could have done anything else, really. I'm just happy that I was able to create a career centered around fantasy and drawing beautiful women because I'd be doing that anyway. I've been putting out this same sort of imagery since I was about 2, It's in my blood.

Are their any particular hosts that you draw your inspiration from?
I like strong women that put a lot of effort into the way they look: Dita Von Teese, Grace Jones, Lady Gaga, Jerry Hall. I love a self-made beauty! I also like willowy women like Kate Moss. I think I've drawn her more than anyone else.

Which designers have you worked with before?
Most of the work that I do is for print and publication (so I'm not really hired by designers) but I used to do a bunch of stuff for Heatherette. I did a lot of their prints and T-shirt graphics for them. I even had one dress I did photographed by David Lachapelle.

Who are you favorite designers?
I like the visionary/showy ones: John Galliano, Alexander McQueen. Karl Lagerfeld, Tom Ford. I don't follow fashion very intensely...of course I love fashion magazines but I'm horrible with names. I like anything edgy and high glamor...I'm more about the fantasy of fashion than the practicality.

Who are your favorite artists?
Jean Paul Goude, Arther Rackman, Richard Gray, Jean James, Mucha, Patrick Nagel, Kay Nielsen, Edmund Dulac, Aubrey Beardsley, George Petty, Varga, and J. C. Leyendeckerr. I have an overwhelming number of artist coffee table books.

What do you do for fun?
I spend a lot of time on my art but when I'm not doing that I have a pretty active social life. I like to go to parties and hang out with my friends...New York stuff. I travel a lot....I'm very free spirited and I don't tend to plan much....

Favorite city in the world and why.
I have three: Tokyo, Rio, and New York. I love the culture of the Japanese and the perfection they all collectively seem to aspire to. It's very raw and refined all at the same time.....very open but also very private. I like that. Rio is just magical! You can fall in love in 10 minutes there. I have a purple Rio tattooed over my heart. New York is my home and the city that made me who I am. I owe a lot to living here for 10 years and I'd have a hard time picturing myself anywhere else.

For more on J. David McKenney, visit his Web site.

Until next time, Keep it chic.

Corbin Chamberlin

read it here:

ARIZONA FOOTHILLS: Fabulosity- J.David McKenney, Fashion Illustrator

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Lipstick Tubes

This my long ago promised, cosmetic themed illustration. I've been working on this for WEEKS! I don't even want to tell you how many versions of this I did.
There is a large nod to Olive Oyl (Popeye's girlfriend) who has been a glamor icon to me since I was two years old.


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Lady Gaga

I have recently purchased a new Wacom tablet which will help me create 100% digital images. I haven't really mastered it yet but today I purchased the new V magazine with Lady GaGa on the cover and was inspired to do this quick little portrait of her on my new tablet.....

the shoes are by Versace

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Earlier Work

If you'll notice at the top of the figures (I think I tried to erase it out) I wrote "surfer" and a "nerd" to show the viewer the difference between what these two types of ladies would look like.

I was about 8 when I did this.

Friday, August 21, 2009


Here's a sneak peak of a little cosmetics themed piece I'm working on

Here's a sneak peak of a little cosmetics themed piece I'm working on

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Glamor Watercolors

or do we like them with Jewelry?

Swan Lake Chess Board

Here are some shots of the chess board with the pieces. I'd still like to shoot this in a studio with lights in the near future but this will have to do for now.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Captain Hook and Wendy

I did a new childrens book portfolio sample. I took the scene from Peter Pan where Captain Hook is forcing Wendy to walk the plank into the ocean.

I intended it to be a long piece but I also cropped it to a more standard size. Which do you prefer?



Here are some of my process sketches:

Saturday, July 25, 2009

SVA 3D design class (week 6)

I still have to make the board but here are some not so proferssional shots of the final pieces. I'll shoot them properly when I have the board done too.

Swan Lake chess set:

Thursday, July 16, 2009

SVA 3D design class (week 5)

Okay so I'm STILL not done with this chess set but I'm getting closer.
Here is a sort of vague shot of where I'm at now.
I have all the pieces complete but they still need a lot of detailing.

The reason I'm behind schedule:
I made molds which ended up sticking to the plastic that I'm casting these in (its not supposed to do that). I also had to break all of my originals pieces to get them out of the mold so I ended up with unworkable molds and broken originals.
LOOOOOOOONG story short I had to put the original sculptures back together, remold them, and cast them all again. I still have a LOT of finishing touches to do but I have all the pieces cast for the most part so I'm doing okay.

It'll all be worth it when I'm finished:) I hope......
Stay tuned

Thursday, July 9, 2009

SVA 3D design class (week 4)

Here are some process photos of my Swan Lake chess set.

I'd like to give a special shout out to Dremel! The lovely little tool that is going to change my life forever! I love you already!

Tune in next week when I'll be casting them all and making the chess board.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

PaperMag write up!

"The very talented illustrator Joshua David McKenney has started a Facebook frenzy with his amazing series of watercolor portraits of friends like David Favale, Maya Judd, Nicolas Alexander, Antonia Thompson, Kwesi Blair, Mark Langrish, George Sotelo, Eric Spear and yours truly. Having a McKenney watercolor as your Facebook profile pic is the new badge of cool. "I was bored on the bus to Boston and I decided to do a doodle of my friend," McKenney tells me. "I did a few more friends. Pretty soon there was drama breaking out amongst my friends as to who I had drawn first. Well, I also got dozens of emails from people I don't know asking for drawings of them and their pets. It's a fun project. Lets see where it goes." Tomorrow, Mark Langish is hosting an opening of McKenney's watercolors at his loft, but your best bet to get your portrait done is to befriend Joshua on Facebook and join his fan club."
By Peter Davis


Color Me a McKenney