Illustrations for Penthouse

February 17th, 2009 | Posted in On the Drawing Board

Last month I got a call from the art director of Penthouse magazine asking if I was available to do a series of spot illustrations for a humor article about St. Patrick’s Day for their March issue. My immediate concern was whether the job entailed drawing any pornographic images. I won’t do that kind of work.

I was assured not, and that all I’d be drawing was a guy getting drunk out of his mind, fighting and eventually passing out in his own vomit.

Well, there’s nothing wrong with that!

The issue is out and here are a few of the spots that were used in the article, which is a “timeline” of a typical yuppie male’s St. Patrick’s Day:

©2009 Penthouse Magazine

©2009 Penthouse Magazine

©2009 Penthouse Magazine

I used a different technique for these, combining my typical linear drawing style with colored lines as opposed to black lines. The effect is a more painted, softer look but it still retains the cartoon look of my drawing style.

The folks at Penthouse liked it a lot and I am already doing another assignment for them. You can say what you want about magazines like Penthouse and Playboy, but they have long been filled with outstanding cartooning. I’m happy to call Penthouse a client.

Also the comp copies I got of the magazine with my illustrations in it seem to be very popular with the guys in my neighborhood. Several have asked if they can have one. Funny, they never asked if they could have a copy of one of my comped MAD Magazines before…


  1. jimbodraw says:

    Nice work Tom – did you ink that with a sepia tone ink?

  2. Mike Kudna23 says:

    Great job tom, that new color technique is really cool. I really like it. You should use it more often.

  3. Brad says:

    LMAO! that last pic of the guy laying in bed is hilarious! luckily i have no idea what he feels like!

  4. Quikdraw says:

    Tom-What’s up with the slugging victim wearing a Boston Red Sox hat and Boston Celtics Larry Bird jersey?
    I can see this cartoon won’t go over too well in Boston…
    Great artwork though.

  5. Arun says:

    whoa super smooth, Tom ! are you gonna stick to this method?
    congrats on bagging Penthouse !

  6. Nate says:

    That is hilarious! Great job!

  7. bluemoonpaul says:

    Great job, Tom. Did you see my letter in that issue?

  8. Corbett says:

    Really nice stuff, Tom.

    I’ve played with colored outlines ever since I was able to scan my drawings into Photoshop.
    Done correctly it produces an excellent painted (or with crisper lines, an animated) look.

    Given the publication, I guess I’d say these illustrations are the t*ts!

    – Corbett

  9. Alex R Hughes says:

    This must be payback for Garnett, Moss and Ortiz! Haha…nice work!

  10. Tom says:

    You Boston guys can blame the Penthouse art director for the Boston sports fan getting beat up. Those were specific details he wanted. Must be a Yankees/Knicks fan.

  11. Aaron says:

    If your looking for someone to give your comp issues of MAD to, I’ll send you my address! I have a subscription, ya know, but getting one from the artist would make my year!


New profile pic courtesy of my self-caricature for the Scott Maiko penned article “Gotcha! Mug Shots of Common (but Despicable) Criminals” from MAD 550

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