Another Penthouse Illustration

October 12th, 2009 | Posted in Freelancing

OMG Mom and Dad!!
Click image for a closer look…

The October issue of Penthouse should have the above spot illustration of mine in it somewhere. It’s just a silly little cartoon that is accompanies a short Halloween article about the scariest thing a college student still living at home can experience.

This job was one that somewhat approaches the line for me when considering work for a publication like Penthouse. I’ve done a few illustrations for them now and made it plain to the art director on the outset that I would not do any overtly pornographic images. I’m no prude and have zero problems with that type of illustration or with people who read magazines with those kinds of images in them, but I don’t want to do them myself. Partly because I just don’t want to do it, and partly because I work for several publications that are read by little kids, and it’s entirely possible the art directors who give me those jobs might have a problem with my byline under a cartoon of a graphically sexual nature. Plus it’s been my experience that when you walk down that road you tend to be forced to continue down that road because other roads are then closed to you… in other words it’s easy to get “typecast” as a “blue” cartoonist.

Penthouse is totally cool with that, and then have never asked me to do anything of that nature. They have plenty of artists who can do a better job of that than I anyway. This particular job certainly is a little on the racy side, but I felt the humor of it and the fact that I was allowed to be more suggestive than literal made it work for me. In fact it’s much funnier to have such a scene “off camera” and use the shadow on the wall to let the viewer know what the guy at the door is seeing than actually showing it would be. Your imagination comes into play, and that is almost always more effective that hitting someone over the head with an image.


  1. bluemoonpaul says:

    I love this one, Tom. Beautifully drawn, colored and told, and reminiscent the great artist, Wally Wood, who also did stuff for MAD (as you well know). Funny! And nice to see you spot the black areas so boldly.
    Now I’ve gotta decide whether to click to take a closer look — dangerous!

  2. Nate says:

    Looks great, Tom!

  3. Jailerjoe says:

    Very funny and super expression. The Linus hair is awesome…”It’s the Great Pumpkin!” Tastefully done. (Now I’ll have an excuse to pick up the October issue)

  4. julio cesar naranjo says:

    Hi Tom awesome ilustration its great what you did with the shadow on the wall very ¬°sutil!. Take care.

  5. Jebus says:

    is it just me or is it reminiscent of bart, marge and homer?!!?

  6. Shiva.Souza says:

    I think execution-wise this is your best piece I’ve seen so far, the expression and use of lighting is great.


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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