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After a brief period working at another larger game studio, I decided to start the new year as a self-employed artist once again. 

2016 was a pretty rough year for me at times. I realized that many of my long-held career dreams and goals really aren't feasible, or are no longer the possibilities that they once were.  I struggled a little, and suffered a period of burn-out, something I never thought would happen to me as I love making art.

But I got through the year, and going into 2017 I think it's time I re-evaluated what my main goals are as a professional artist, where I want to be, and what path I should take to get there.  Overall, I'm pretty optimistic and looking forward to the future!
I underwent another ligament reconstruction at the end of January.  I don't want to get too ahead of myself, but there is a good possibility that #3 will be the lucky number and this will finally fix my messed up wrist after almost 15 years of pain and problems.  That means I have to get through another month of my arm being in a cast, so hopefully it will be worth the inconvenience! 

I'm still working, but it's a lot harder to hold/control the pen, and I'm still getting a lot of random nerve pain and stabbiness from the four pins holding my wrist bones in place.  

FOUR MORE WEEKS.  I can't wait til I can start drawing/painting/modeling again like a normal person.  This cast is driving me nuts.
Wow, thanks so much to MidnightExigent and Phreja for featuring my Dota 2 Crystal Maiden Winterbringer loading screen!  That was a big surprise this morning; I'm super thrilled and so glad you enjoyed it!

Loadingscreen New by ChemicalAlia

Also thanks to everyone for the birthday wishes! :)
I've been living outside of Seattle since September, and just got everything approved and set up to go sign the lease at a new place in the city on Wednesday!  It's a one-bedroom and a little smaller than my current place, but it has a dog run on the roof (which is awesome for safety at late hours), and I get to live on the 9th floor, which will be awesome for getting over my fear of heights!  I've got relatives coming out to visit in early July, then I'm going back to Pennsylvania a bit for my mom's birthday (and because I love PA in the summer), and then my parents are coming out to stay with me for a bit before The International 5 tournament for Dota 2 starts. 

My sister and her husband just bought a cute townhouse not far from here, and it's been so awesome having them live close to me again.  I tend to work a lot, and I don't have any coworkers (since I work from home) and don't know a lot of people here besides :icondrysockett: and :iconjonathondobbs: (who I've known FOREVER, and it's so crazy that he lives here too), so hopefully this move will provide me with more opportunities to make some friends and get out more easily. Knowing me, that's probably wishful thinking v:

The only thing I'm sad about is no tropical vacations in sight D:

You guys got any cool summer plans?

Also, good god, this website.  I forget that it doesn't automatically sort your submissions to the "featured" folder, which means half of my crap doesn't show up.  And when you manually do it, there's no way to sort your stuff by submission date, so everything is horribly out of order.  I've been doing some heavy cleanup of my gallery, and it's so frustrating.  I can't believe that has still not been addressed!  If I'm missing something obvious here, please advise thx

Hey guys, been a while.  Been focusing on a lot of work lately, and just wanted to show off Spectre set for to the Dota 2 Workshop New Bloom contest, cause we're super proud of it! :)

You can check it out on the workshop here  Votes don't count towards the sets being accepted by Valve, but we always appreciate the support!

Loadingscreen by ChemicalAlia
Front Back Small by ChemicalAlia

Turntable2 Big by ChemicalAlia

It's also part of a larger collection by some artist friends of ours, called the Treasure of the Wondrous Ram!  There's sets for six agility heroes in this chest.  We'd love to hear what you think!

It includes:

Sanction of Celarian (Mirana), by Yi

Selemene's Eclipse (Luna), by Don Don and Ziedrich

Avatar of the Year Beast (Juggernaut), by Jeremy Klein and Ziedrich

Raiment of the Sacred Blossom (Phantom Assassin), by OrganizedChaos and Ziedrich

Blooming Entropy (Spectre), by DrySocket and Chemical Alia

Vagabond (Phantom Lancer), by Don Don and Ziedrich

Store 700 by ChemicalAlia

Chest 700 by ChemicalAlia

After spending the last six years of my life living in Dallas, i am happy to say that next month i'm finally getting out of Texas! 

There's a lot of good things about Texas, and the people here are really nice, but I never managed to feel at home here and it has been a big source of stress in my life. 

I'm moving up to the Seattle, Washington area, where my sister and many of my good friends now live as well.  I want to get back into photography once i move, as well!

i'm visiting my parents back in Pennsylvania this week, and I do have to say, i think i'll always consider the Lehigh Valley my home, no matter where i live.  I miss this place, but the nice thing about working for myself is the ability to travel whenever i want and work anywhere!

Ever do any big/cross-country moves? 
Somehow I thought that when DrySockett and I left Gearbox to make silly hats, I would actually be reducing my stress level by going from two full-time jobs to one.  I thought I might even have enough spare time to pursue things such as hobbies and work on personal portfolio stuff.

There used to be a field in front of my townhouse apartment.  Now it's an enormous construction site for like 15 new buildings.  They haven't even broken ground yet, and already I'm going insane.  They're making dirt mountains and then flattening them, and it's just this constant BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP of the bulldozers backing up.  They drive in reverse more than they drive forward,  I don't understand.   I want to die.

This is what it used to look like:

Ice world by ChemicalAlia
I'm doing some digital painting for a loading screen for Dota 2, feel free to hang out while I finish it up!
Remember back in the day when everybody was like, "screw you guys, I'm going to SheezyArt"? And everybody else was like, "lol SheezyArt" 

Those were some good times, 2006 or whenever that was.
Hi everybody!

This year Drysocket and I are hosting a Dota 2 Furtive Frostus gift art exchange event (Secret Santa). Basically, you just fill out a form telling us what kind of picture you'd like to receive, and email it to us by Monday, 16 Dec. We'll match up all the requests with other participants in secret, and in a few days you'll receive an e-mail with your prompt for your Frostee. You'll have a week to draw your gift and e-mail it back (keep it secret!), and on 25 December, all of the art will be posted here and on our Facebook page.

You don't need to be a great artist by any means to participate, as long as you have access to a drawing program/drawing tools and a scanner. It's more about the fun of making stuff for people and receiving ridiculous fanart for the holidays! The most important thing is that you get your drawing done on time.


Sign up by emailing us ( your completed form by Monday, 16 Dec 2013, 11:59 CST.

Art turn in date: Monday, 23 Dec 2013 by 11:59 CST.

The Giftening: 25 Dec 2013 on… and Dota Reddit.


Request: "80's Crystal Maiden"

And remember, keep your drawing secret til it's posted on the 25th because obviously, geez.
Have fun!



E-mail address:

Favorite hero/character:

Briefly describe your request/ultimate Frostivus fantasy drawing: (ie. 80's Crystal Maiden, a kingly portrait of Skeleton King, etc.)

Would you be willing to be a last-minute backup artist if necessary? Y/N

What do you like/dislike drawing? (optional extra info for us to make better match-ups)
I woke up to an awesome surprise this morning, when I saw that the Catakeet couriers by DrySockett and I (and animated by our friend BigTuna) have received a Daily Deviation!  Thanks so much to PolyMune for the feature, and I'm honored by the great response to them! 

That was by far the longest project we took on for Dota, over four months from concept to submission, working in the evenings and on weekends, and we're super proud of them and grateful for the support.

Mimi, Bibi, Fifi, and Cici the Catakeet Couriers by ChemicalAlia

I'm pretty happy with things right now.  Got some new stuff going on in my life which are pretty big and also rather awesome so far, I'll elaborate on that a little more sometime in the next few weeks. :)

What about you guys, how are you doing lately?  It's been a while since I got to hear from some of you! 
5 September 2003 was a Friday, and I had just finished my first week of school at West Chester University.  I was renting a single bedroom in a house owned by a nice elderly couple named Blanche and Harry. Harry fought in World War II and was captured during the Battle of the Bulge.  He was listed as KIA for four months until his family learned that he was a prisoner of war, and when he returned they got married.  Blanche was a piano teacher, which I thought was pretty awesome since I'm a classical pianist too.  I only went to West Chester for one semester, and finished up my bachelor's degree at Kutztown after switching from music composition (lol) to fine art (also lol).  I found out yesterday that both Blanche and Harry have passed away, in 2006 and 2012, sadly.  It's a shame to see so many people from their generation going, as they have such interesting stories to tell.  I hope that the carpeting in their bathroom lives on in their memory!

Anyway, that was the day I finally decided to get an account on DeviantArt like all my cool friends on the Yahoo groups had been doing, and thus began the fantastic internet journey of uploading all my crappy Mario and Sonic fan art onto this page.  It's crazy to see where I started, and even though I still feel like I have a long way to go with my art, it's super cool that I've achieved my dream job of doing it professionally.

To mark the occasion, I've redone the oldest submission in my gallery!  Thankfully, in ten years, my taste in high brow art has not changed.


Oopsies II

Also in ten years, I have yet to receive any hatemail over the fact that my screen name is a pun on Saddam Hussein's cousin, who is a war criminal (and my middle name is Alia).  My mom actually came up with it, and it seemed humorous at the time, and now it just stuck 0:
Oh my god, I've been here for almost TEN YEARS.  I have been wanting to draw something very particular to commemorate the occasion, and I have just about three weeks to pull it off.  If I don't do this, I am going to be very upset with myself, as I feel it is a pretty balling idea.

Also, I just got back from Seattle last night and that was positively the worst flight I've ever been on.  Ever have the very last seat on the plane?  The one that doesn't recline and is right next to the bathroom?  That's the one I had.  Some crazy death storm shut down the entire DFW airport and we were forced to fly around in circles for a few hours, before landing in Austin to refuel and wait a few more hours.  During which time we were not allowed off the plane, and I'm pretty sure every single passenger (besides myself because I have standards and a basic sense of human decency) got up to take a shit like three times each.  The captain was like, "Well, you all have to sit here in the 100 degree heat and without airflow, but feel free to use the facilities as often as you like to pass the time!"  Seriously, there was a nonstop line of pooping and the smell was pretty intense.  At least we didn't crash.

Oh, and the International was cool, and I met some cool people.
Q: Mrs. Shady is lying dead on a bed, and on the floor beside it is a pair of scissors.  The scissors were instrumental in her death, yet there is no trace of blood.  Mrs. Shady's body reveals no signs of any cuts or bruises.  How could she have been murdered with the pair of scissors?
Ever get the sinking feeling that a very close relative may have disowned you and your entire family without so much as a word, and despite a fairly normal childhood growing up with them you're somehow a bit unsurprised, when you realize said relative appears to have done it to multiple other family members in the past?

It's a weird feeling that I've had for the past few months and I'm not entirely sure how to deal with it, especially in the midst of a larger family issue.  It's times like these in particular that I wish I wasn't so far away, because I might have at least had been able to provide some input in the matter. :C

Trying to look on the brighter side, I'm getting a new camera for infrared photography this week and next week Skyler and I are going to travel to Big Bend for the 4th of July weekend.  Not gonna lie, I'm a little worried about getting my head chopped off by drug lords, but I'm super excited to do a desert road trip and I can't wait to try out the camera!

Mosquitoes or Spiders

Journal Entry: Sat Jun 15, 2013, 10:00 PM
  • Reading: Nancy Drew
I can't decide which is worse.  Mosquitoes are almost as horrible looking as spiders, but spiders edge them out in that department.  Like Karl Pilkington said, "a spider is always ready".  They always look like they're about to leap onto your face or make a web down into your hair or something.  Ugh.  But mosquitoes torment me on a regular basis.  Just the other day I was sitting here at my computer reading my Marcus Fenix romance fanfiction like we all do, while my shoulder was being savagely brutalized by a mosquito.  I got like 6 bites in one small area.  This has happened to my butt as well, through my pajamas.  So they are also horrible.  If there is a spider in my room, I will not be pleased, but unless it is in jumping distance from my bed, I probably won't totally flip (unless it's gone in the morning, then commence flipping because WHO KNOWS WHERE IT IS NOW).  But if there is a mosquito, I need to deal with that.  Even if I bundle myself with covers up to my head, it'll just bite my head over and over all night.

Mosquitoes and spiders, children of Satan since 1982 (at least).

What do you think?

A short poem by me

Journal Entry: Mon Jun 3, 2013, 9:48 PM
  • Reading: Nancy Drew
  • Playing: Altered Beast
  • Eating: cookies

The end.

Journal Entry: Mon May 13, 2013, 3:00 PM
  • Reading: Nancy Drew
  • Playing: Altered Beast
  • Eating: cookies
Now THAT has a real nice ring to it, right?  Way better than that stupid .com, whoever wanted that, anyway?

Anyway, it exists!  Now I get to learn how to transfer everything over, what a joy.  After that, I can go back to thinking of some fun new things to actually add.