Since 1983, Kayanan has illustrated for every major comic book publisher. His most notable work has been on Marvel Comics' Conan, Acclaim Comics' Turok and DC Comics' Firestorm. He also inked the Eisner-nominated series Chiaroscuro: The Life and Times of Leonardo Da Vinci for Vertigo Comics.
Kayanan has illustrated and developed concept designs for comic book, film and game companies. During the late 1990s, he was the creator and art director for Cross Plains Comics featuring the Pulp magazine characters created by Robert E. Howard. Kayanan developed concept designs for Nintendo's ground-breaking Turok: Dinosaur Hunter II video game. He currently continues to do work for Topps Cards on licenses such as Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings.
Kayanan's art is known for its rapid tempo, storytelling pace and layered depth. Much thought is evident in the choreography of dynamic action on every page. His slick and precise usage of shadows to define anatomy and emotion is as proficient as any of the longtime masters of the craft.
Kayanan is a Master-level edged weapons (knife, sword, tomahawk) expert and instructor in Sayoc Kali. This rare combination of a visual and martial artist, has led to projects which utilize both skills to illustrate fight storyboards for film and TV. Kayanan choreographed and trained the actors, in William Friedkin's The Hunted, starring Benicio del Toro and Tommy Lee Jones. He also trained actor Sam Rockwell for director George Clooney's film, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. Kayanan was a development artist, fight trainer and weapons consultant for Paramount Pictures adaptation of Edgar Rice Burroughs' John Carter of Mars. His art was used for the hit CBS show NCIS: Los Angeles. Kayanan designed fights for the main cast of LL Cool J, Chris O' Donnell, Daniela Ruah and Eric Christian Olsen, as well as special guest stars Danny Trejo, Ernie Reyes, Jr. and Daniel Henney. Kayanan was the technical advisor for the close quarter fights inside the airplane of the film Non-Stop starring Liam Neeson.
Additional comic book work can be found in issue 39 of Dark Horse Comics' Conan, Annihilation, and fantasy novelist R.A. Salvatore's Drizzt, Worlds of Dungeons & Dragons from Devil's Due Publishing.
Kayanan worked on concept illustration for the films Immortals. and Mirror, Mirror both directed by Tarsem Singh from Relativity Media, and the related graphic novel anthology Immortals: Gods and Heroes published by Archaia.
Recent projects include the Discovery TV show Lone Target', also known internationally as Manhunt', starring former Navy SEAL Joel Lambert where Kayanan designed RnD Hawk, Bontoc and Madumi Sayoc Kali-Daniel Winkler knives were prominently featured.
- Turok (1998 as artist)
- Turok: Tales of the Lost Land (1998 as artist)
- Ice Age on the World of Magic: The Gathering (1995 as artist)
- Immortals: Gods and Heroes (2011 as artist)
Cross Plains Comics
- Robert E. Howard: A Short Biography (1999 artist)
- Robert E. Howard: Myth Maker (1999 artist)
- Star Wars: Chewbacca (2000 artist)
- Conan (2007 artist)
- Worlds of Dungeons and Dragons (2008 artist)
- America vs. The Justice League (1985 as artist)
- Babylon 5: In Valen's Name (1998 as cover artist)
- Batman: Legends of The Dark Knight (1999 as artist)
- Captain Atom (1989)
- Fury of Firestorm (1982-1984 as artist)
- Michael Moorcock's Hawkmoon (1986-1988 as artist)
- The Amazing Spider-Man (1999-2000 as artist)
- Conan the Adventurer (1993-1995 as artist)
- Savage Sword of Conan (1993 as artist)
- Moment of Silence #1 (2001 as artist)
- Annihilation, January 2008, collected in What If?: Civil War, April 2008, ISBN 0-7851-3036-5
- What If?, December 2009
- Triumph of the Walking Dead (2011 as cover artist)
- Jurassic Park (1994 as sketch card artist)
- Frankenstein (1994 as sketch card artist)
- Star Wars Clone Wars (2004 as sketch card artist)
- Star Wars Heritage (2005 as sketch card artist)
- Lord of the Rings Evolution (2005 as sketch card artist)
- Lord of the Rings Masterpieces (2006 as sketch card artist)
- Star Wars 30th Anniversary (2007 as sketch card artist)
- Chiaroscuro: The Life and Times of Leonardo Da Vinci (1993-1995 as inker)
- Shade the Changing Man Vol. 2 (1995 as inker)
- Animal Man Annual Vol.1 (1993 as inker)
- The Hunted (2003) (fight choreographer)
- Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (2004) (Trainer)
- Immortals (2011) (Concept illustrator)
- Non-Stop (2014) (fight choreographer)
- NCIS: Los Angeles (TV) (fight technical advisor - 2 episodes)
- Zablo, Craig (October 17, 2004). "First Blood". Stallonezone. Retrieved March 28, 2006.
- Rafael Kayanan at AlberyMoy.com. Retrieved March 28, 2006.
- Van Wicklen, T: The Hunted, pg 30. Black Belt Magazine, 2003
- Annihilation Makes Things Civil: Hine talks "What If? Annihilation"Marvel Comics, Comic Book Resources, October 5, 2007
- Patrick Goldstein (June 26, 2007). "A `Fall' no one wants to take". Los Angeles Times.
- Damon Wise (October 4, 2008). "Final fantasy". London: The Guardian.
- Official website
- Rafael Kayanan at AFN.org. Retrieved March 28, 2006.
- Rafael Kayanan at Maarte.org. Retrieved March 28, 2006.
- Rafael Kayanan at the Internet Movie Database. Retrieved March 28, 2006.
- Rafael Kayanan at Sayoc Combat Choreography. Retrieved March 28, 2006.
||This section includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (May 2010)|
|The Amazing Spider-Man artist