The update nobody asked for

I haven't been able to reveal a lot of work lately. I've had a project that I've been working on for over a year and a half. And it won't be released from NDA purgatory till somewhere around November. There are a few other smaller projects that are under the same restrictions for the time being.

So in an effort to actually use this blog, I'll catch you up on the last few months.

In November of last year, I moved from Richmond, VA back to my home state of Iowa. I love Richmond, but it had become very difficult to see my friends and family that still live in Iowa. I hadn't seen most of them for 5 or 6 years since I moved to Virginia. So here I am. That covers the personal info. Now on to the art.

First, lets talk about the art annuals. I was nominated for an award in the Expose 12 book from Ballistic Publishing. The image nominated is my cover for Rifts: Tomorrow Legion Players guide from Pinnacle Entertainment Group.

Rifts: Tomorrow Legion Player's Guide

It's an honor to be nominated. And the art that will be in that book looks amazing.  So click the link above and check out the book.

Another surprise was getting accepted into the Spectrum Fantastic Art Annual. I haven't submitted to Spectrum for a few years. There is no political reason or grudge. It just seems that some other expense comes up at the same time every year. This year it was replacing all the brakes on my old truck. I decided not to die in a fiery car accident instead of getting my work into an annual. So how did I get in? The lovely people at Monte Cook Games submit work from their projects for the artists every year. That is incredibly kind of them, and provided a wonderful surprise.

The painting was an interior image for Gods of the Fall.

Revels in Trickery - Monte Cook Games

I always struggle to make work for myself. I work quite a bit, and try to keep a somewhat balanced life. Meaning, I hang out with friends, play video games, watch movies, read, etc.. So my time is limited. 

I've been making an effort to fit some personal work into my daily schedule,  Hence a lot of movie drawings on my instagram. Along with figure drawings, and digital brush experiments.  Here are a few of those.

I've also been getting the itch for traditional media, to give me a break from staring at a computer screen all day. I love working with ink. I am incredibly rusty at it though.

Then there are the t-shirts. This is another effort to stretch my comfort zone a bit. I used to work in T-shirt shops for years. There is something I find attractive in the limitations that screen printing provides. Technology has changed quite a bit since then, and you can get just about anything on a shirt now, but I prefer to keep the limitations in place when I plan the shirts. It makes me come up with solutions I wouldn't typically think of. You can check them all out on my threadless shop.

I have done a few finished paintings. All of them were meant to try out different techniques than what I typically use in my paid commissions and more importantly, just have fun.

I've been upping my geek cred by watching people play roll playing games on Twitch tv. The series is Roll Play by itmejp. They play several different games in different RPG settings. The painting is of Carriless Firm (played by Geoff Robinson) from Rollplay:Blades. All characters play hired killers. It's a lot of fun to watch, or just listen to.

Carriless Firm

Carriless Firm

Also in the the Rollplay family of shows is Court of Swords. The gm Adam Koebel has a knack for killing off the party members. It gave me an entertaining idea for a painting.

Prints are HERE

Prints are HERE

The final painting started as a study of Gil Elvgren techniques. I've always been a huge fan of his brushwork. During this time, I was playing Fallout 3 (I'm way behind on video games). Anyway, the wonderful Moira Brown runs a shop in the game. She is such a unique and entertaining character. So...the Elvgren study turned into a Fallout 3 poster. 

Craterside Supply

And lastly, I did a podcast interview for The episode was focused on a few artists from the gaming world. My interview is somewhere in the middle, but just listen to the whole thing. It's a good show.

That's it. You are all caught up. I think. 





New Tshirts

I'm so good at business, I forgot to post about my new t-shirts.

There are 3 designs right now. I'll slowly add some more as I come up with new ideas. You can get the designs on nearly everything. Shirts (of course), hoodies, tanks, pencil bags, and uhhh..shower curtains, blankets and several other things I never thought to put designs on, but Threadless did.

You can go here -

Deadlands: The Boneyard

The Boneyard by Seanan McGuire is the third installment of the Deadlands series of books from Tor publishing. The others being Ghostwalkers by Jonathan Maberry and Thunder Moon Rising by Jeffrey J. Mariotte

Here is the link to more on the book. The Boneyard

I've included the sketches. We changed directions after the first round of sketches to better reflect the Circus setting of the book. It definitely fits the book better, even though I liked the original sketches.


The Boneyard_Final-Aaron J Riley

Warhammer 40k Necrons

I had basically quit doing Warhammer cards. However, my AD that I had worked with for a couple years knew the one thing that would convince me to do some more. Necrons. I had been asking for them, the moment we had a relationship that I felt comfortable asking for stuff. And considering recent news that Games Workshop and Fantasy Flight have split, I guess I was in on one of the last sets of Warhammer 40k cards. 

Eldritch Lance
Illuminor Szeras

Gods of the Fall

Interior illustrations for Gods of the Fall by Monte Cook Games. You can read more about the game here

Divine Labor

Divine Labor

Revels in Trickery

Revels in Trickery

The book is really well done. Plus a big ass map.

Contributor Copy

Contributor Copy

Rifts Characters

Pinnacle Entertainment Group is doing a kickstarter for a new version of Rifts. I did a bunch of the characters for the Game. I've got some covers I did for them also, but I can't show those quite yet. Here are the characters individually and with the background for a GM screen (or something like that).

You can read more about the Kickstarter on the PEG website

Prints available again

I recently had a request for a print for one of my paintings. Which reminded me that I had gotten lazy with my fotomoto store. Which lead to the discovery that fotomoto didn't work since I updated my site.

So I had to find a new printer. I don't want to deal with printing out stuff, packaging and mailing. It's a hassle. Enter Inprnt. 

I set up a store with the few images I'm allowed to sell prints of. Unfortunately Star Wars isn't available as of now. I'll check with them about selling prints but I think I know the answer already.

So anyway, go buy a print.


Totally vain clothing choice? Tax Write -off? In case I get lost and forget my name? Possibly all of the above.

In all honesty, I'm picky about my t-shirts. I can't stand those cheap ass t-shirts from stores, that feel like they are on their tenth trip through a thrift store. 

And now that so many people were so kind to show interest, I am now taking pre-orders in the store. The link is at the top of the page. There are also women's shirts. I just didn't have them done for the pic.