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Underground Ring: Book 2 – Artwork

Posted by Don Michael, Jr. on January 12th, 2015 in Commissions

I’m excited to announce that the book Underground Ring: Book 2, by M.M. Reid, has just been released! (You can find the Kindle edition here.) You may wonder what this has to do with me??? Well, let me enlighten you… I am proud to say that I designed and created the book cover for it.

Underground Ring 2 Book Cover-100dpi

Underground Ring: Book Two – by M.M. Reid – Book cover by Don Michael, Jr.

As is my usual process when creating a book cover, I created a painting first. After completing the painting, I scan it and then create the cover in Photoshop. Below is the painting…


Illumination – 20″x16″ – Acrylic on canvas – Completed 11/22/14

©2014, Don Michael, Jr.

In case you are wondering, yes, I created the book cover for Underground Ring: Book 1 as well…

Underground Ring Book Cover-100dpi

Underground Ring: Book One – by M.M. Reid – Cover Artwork by Don Michael, Jr.

It is also available on Amazon… Here.

And, below is the painting I created for Book One…


Precipice – 20″x16″ – Acrylic on canvas – ©2012, Don Michael, Jr.

It is a fun challenge to interpret the words of an author into one image to represent the book. I’m really excited with how both of these paintings, and then covers, turned out. Once you read the books I think you will see that they really captured the essence of their relative stories.

I love this thing I do!

Happy Creating!

Lead By Example

I was recently approached by one of the ladies in my church to create a painting for her to give to her husband on his first Father’s Day. Her husband is a good friend and is also one of the pastors in our church. I love that he has a HUGE heart for families – especially children. He had recently seen a painting titled, Love Over Time, by artist Hannah Jordan, and had fallen in love with it. To him it represented everything he wanted to be for his young son, and he’s even been using it for the masthead on his Facebook page. Below is that painting…

 Love Over Time by Hannah Jordan-lores

Love Over Time – by Artist Hannah Jordan

My client wanted me to create a painting very similar to Love Over Time for her gift to her husband, but in my style. You may think that this would make the process of creating my painting easier in that the concept was already fairly complete. However, this actually made the process quite difficult because I never want to copy another artist’s work outright.

Knowing my friend’s favorite colors I made sure that they were prevalent throughout the ‘schmeerings’ in the background. As for the elephants, I wanted the child to be copying Dad’s stride, but opposite. As anyone with children knows, young minds are a sponge, and they try to emulate what they see mom and dad doing. The results are often not quite right, but are almost always adorable. I also wanted to show the energy of the young guy trying to keep up with Dad by having his tail bouncing behind him while Dad’s tail is gently swaying. Below is what I came up with…

Lead By Example

Lead By Example – 9″x12″ – Acrylic on canvas – Completed 5/21/14

©2014, Don Michael, Jr.

So, you may ask, why am I posting about this Father’s Day gift two weeks before Father’s Day? Funny you should ask… Some people just can’t wait to share the gifts they have for their loved ones. So, this beautiful young family already has this painting hanging in their home. 🙂 Thank you, Martha, for letting me be a part of this fun gift… and, Happy early Father’s Day, Jeremy!

To every one else I say…

Happy Creating!

WindRidge’s Love

If someone had told me just two years ago that I would one day be painting animal portraits I’d have laughed out loud. Not because I don’t like animals, mind you, but because the idea had just not crossed my radar – at all.  Well, the laugh would have been on me, because I just completed my 4th dog portrait… And, I’m having fun doing it.

Windridges Love

WindRidge’s Love – 24″x20″ – Acrylic on canvas – Completed 5/31/14

©2014, Don Michael, Jr.

It is really a fun challenge to make these animal portraits work within the confines of the Over the Under-Schmeerings (OTUS) style of painting that I created a few years ago. Creating the illusion of the real colors of the animal while keeping many of the extraneous colors from the under-schmeerings is a very fun exercise. And, each animal has brought its own unique challenge to the process. Oh, how I love this thing I do!

I would like to thank WindRidge German Shepherds (www.windridgek9.com) for giving me such latitude in creating this portrait. Also, thanks for allowing me to post the daily progress of the painting process on Facebook. I had a lot of fun with it, and I’m really proud of how it turned out.

For those interested, here is how the painting progressed on a daily basis…

Jordan Commission Progression

Happy Creating!


Posted by Don Michael, Jr. on November 20th, 2013 in Commissions, Over the Under-Schmeerings

I got a text early this morning letting me know that my latest commissioned painting has arrived and is now hanging in its new home…


Coco – 20″16″ – Acrylic on canvas – Completed 11/11/13

My understanding is that I will be getting a photo in the near future of the real Coco sitting with her new portrait. I look forward to seeing it.

This commission was arranged thru the director of the Gina M Woodruff Gallery in Long Beach, CA. (Thank you, Gina!) The painting itself ended up going to Edmond, OK. An interesting side note (to me, anyway) is that this is the second painting of mine to end up in Edmond, OK in the past couple years. And, as far as I know, the people that own them don’t even know each other. Our world continues to get smaller and smaller…

Happy Creating!

Copyright © Don Michael, Jr.