• Shaun J. Nigro

TWB Artists: Keith Talbot

Artwork by Keith Talbot


THE ART OF THE WRITERS BLOCK

From the beginning, Clarence and I have envisioned spinoffs of stories, merchandise, and other multimedia expressions to expand upon The Writers Block universe, and indeed this has culminated in a first batch of short stories to be featured in the upcoming TWB Anthology. Said anthology will be featuring stories by Clarence and I, as well as previous and future guests from the podcast: James Pyne (see Apocalypse 2), KC Johnston (see Pocket Trolls), and Kailey Paige Peckford (of Story Inkorporated).


One of our biggest aspirations, however, is to compile a full-fledged TWB comic book series, directly adapted from the podcast stories. At the end of the first Chapter of TWB, this ambitious endeavor culminated in two written drafts of stories (a Jimmy Eagle continuation by me, a John Jackson Barry continuation by Clarence). Unfortunately, that was put aside, but what remains and continues to grow to this day is a collection of TWB-inspired illustrations by the legendary Keith Talbot.


THE MAN, THE MYTH, THE LEGEND

Keith has been with The Writers Block almost since the beginning. Well known in the VR/3D printing scene, and having previously been interviewed on the 8Sparks Media Pixel Painters production, it was only natural that I would ask him to do an episode sketch. This first sketch, for our second episode: “Goonies Never Say Die,” was an easy fit as anyone that knows Keith knows that he revels in Lovecraftian lore and excels in virtual reality sculpting and vibrant paintings of towering Cthulian monstrosities.

Artwork by Keith Talbot


This partnership would quickly become a natural part of the TWB process, which would entail Clarence and I recording our stories and me divulging minimal but significant details for Keith to illustrate (since he never hears the episodes before they premiere). Once the outlines are confirmed, color is added to the illustration and I use Photoshop to add relevant text. Eventually, the stories are separated from their original episodes and aired on Facebook in video format, featuring the episode illustration with an applied motion filter from the Pixaloop app.


Over time, loose ends have been tied up with Keith illustrating a thumbnail for the Pilot episode (which had previously been left blank) as well as a portrait sketch of Clarence and I in the studio, which would become the official podcast thumbnail.


KEITH’S LITTLE SECRETS

We are lucky to have Keith on our team, and even luckier that he is a fan of the podcast (we can only assume!). His dedication to helping us bring these stories into a visual medium has given rise to fun Easter eggs, like the numbers 6 and 9 (see episode 4: “Time Sphere”) being hidden in various episode illustrations. To this day, I’m sure that there are some Easter eggs I have not discovered.

Artwork by Keith Talbot


In his illustration for our DOUBLE FEATURE episode, I tasked Keith with hiding as many references to all previous episodes as he could. There too, I am positive I have not yet found everything hidden.


And though this is certainly no secret, Keith Talbot was also featured as our guest storyteller in the third continuation of Mavericks Insane Asylum (see episode 15: “Ghost in the Walls”).


OTHER 8SPARKS PROJECTS

But wait! Keith’s contributions don’t end with the TWB universe. In fact, his pen (digital or otherwise) has graced the pages of multiple 8Sparks projects.


In early 2020, Keith completed two illustrations featured in the Facebook premiere of the audiobook series: No Honor Among Thieves, written by Clarence Carter and narrated by Jean-Paul Wood, and available in print on Amazon! (shameless plug 1)


Around the same time, Keith also did the illustration for the fourth 8Sparks Stories audio drama production, "Sleepwalker".


And most recently, I have been fortunate to work with this legend on my children’s book “Koala Celebrates Songkran,” available for pre-order on Amazon now! (shameless plug 2)

Artwork by Keith Talbot


And so it goes without saying that Keith has been a force to be reckoned with here at 8Sparks Media and especially in The Writers Block universe. But don't just take our word for it, go check out his original work on his official Facebook page, Instagram, and his own website! (click those highlighted words already, they bring you to magical places!) We are elated to have Keith on our team and are ever excited to see what amazing artwork he comes up with next!


Thanks for checking out this week's blog post and our first artist profile! Be on the lookout for future posts and 8Sparks profiles. Next week we go into depth discussing the artwork of another amazing artist, contributor, and soon-to-be guest storyteller, Rebecca Rule Kilimnik, of the Homespun Haints podcast!


Check out this awesome outline of tomorrow's episode illustration by Keith Talbot!



The Writers Block podcast is:


Shaun J. Nigro

Clarence Carter

Keith Talbot


Mentioned in this article:


Kailey Paige Peckford

@ Story Inkorporated podcast!

Jean-Paul Wood

@ Previously Delicious channel!

Rebecca Rule Kilimnik

@ Homespun Haints podcast!

James Pyne on Amazon with

@Big Cranky: Fall into Darkness

KC Johnston

@Odd Portal Studios








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