Sample: Jimmy's Grandparents (grandpa: Stephen Donohue)


These two grandparent's portraits are very special commissions from my new friend Jimmy Griffen. They are special from the point of perspective that a grandchild wanted to honor the memory of his ancestors back in Ireland, and special in the artistic sense because the emphasis was in bringing them alive as in the present and in body and soul. I took a forensic-like approach from some very old B&W photographs and from a few color reference pictures that Jimmy gave me. It was an act of love in terms of the sentiment and the process, but also a challenge, it had to be them period, no room for politeness.  The ultimate test was to show the portraits to Jimmy, but only when they were done, and to see if he saw his grandparents as he knew them. He later told me "I didn't just see their faces. They were completely my grandparents. I would swear that you knew them. Pepe, you nailed it". That, my friends, is the kind of sentiment that make my life as an artist such a joy.


A modern take on a classical art form with hints of traditional values of labor-intensive craftsmanship. These cross-hatching techniques emanated from the old engraving reproduction techniques mastered by artists like Gustave Doré in the 1800s and later on assimilated into a pen and ink illustration by American artist Franklin Booth in the 1900’s. This technique and illustration style has been an interest of mine since childhood and I’m pleased to bring it to you and to the digital age with state of the art modern reproduction technology and the unique and simple magic of pen and ink. These are all custom made portraits. Please see "How it Works" for details.

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