Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Toonces 1991-2011

I'll post something longer in a while. I'm just not up to it now. Suzanne and I have lost our little buddy, our son, our tiny little sweetheart. Toonces is gone.

Friday, May 27, 2011

What Might Have Been

Well, shoot. I was one of those jerks saying that WB really blew it with the casting of the WONDER WOMAN pilot that ended up not getting picked up for next season. But now they've released some stills (I got these from iFanboy.) from the show and I have to say...wow. Adrianne Palicki looks absolutely stunning as the amazon princess. All the reviews I've read have really given her props for pulling off the role. Now I'm disappointed we won't get the chance to see it.

I feel bad for Palicki, too. I like her. She was the one bright spot in the terrible LEGION. I hope she can survive this and find her star-making role.

Have a great holiday weekend.


Monday, May 23, 2011

Goin' Back to Charlotte...

It's official. Shelton Drum has graciously made it possible for us to represent the 'Ringo Scholarship again at this year's Heroes Convention in Charlotte June 3-5. We hope to make an exciting announcement there so if you're going to the convention, make sure to attend the art auction Saturday night.

We'll be setting up in our usual spot with the lovely creators of THE PERHAPANAUTS, Todd Dezago and Craig Rousseau (and maybe Nick Cardy!) Just look for us under our new vertical banner (see above.) It's scheduled to be ready a week before the show. So cross your fingers.

If you think you've seen everything we have to offer, think again. Suze and I have taken another look at some of the artwork in our possession and we're in a better state of mind now and have decided to let more of it go. We're still not selling any of the TELLOS pages and likely never will but there will be some pages from Mike's final completed project, the SPIDER-MAN AND FANTASTIC FOUR miniseries he did with the inestimable Jeff Parker. And there will also be some pages that I'm just in love with that Mike did for his two-issue run on MS. MARVEL. Mike had a real fondness for the character as a teenager (especially when Dave Cockrum redesigned her outfit) and I think it shows in these pages. All these pages are inked and have some nice character shots so they'll be a little more expensive. But we won't be gouging. Mike would NOT have liked that. Even if you don't want to buy a page, please feel free to stop by and take a look. You'll see why I've been hesitant to sell them.

A quick aside about the SPIDEY-FF stuff. It's inked by Wade Von Grawbadger, one of my favorite inkers. I'd been a real fan of his from when he was inking Tony Harris on STARMAN. About a month after Mike passed away, I got an email from Wade telling me that he had some pages of Mike's from the miniseries and wanted my address so he could send them to me. I was blown away. I had just assumed that Mike had sold them off and forgot about it. Wade could have just sold the pages and I'd never have been the wiser. But he not only didn't sell them, he made a real effort to track me down and contacted me to return them. In our email exchanges, he struck me an extremely nice, self-deprecating and sweet person. I can't thank him enough for the effort he made. Because of him, I got to hold those beautiful pages in my hand and now we'll get to use them to expand the scholarship in Mike's name. So here's a great big public "Thank you!" to Wade Von Grawbadger.

Friday, May 20, 2011


She-Hulk. Just because. Four posts in one week. That must be some kind of record.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Head Games

As promised, here are some head studies of three of the main characters in THE HAND ME DOWN HORROR.

First up is Prince Vlad himself, Dracula. He has several different looks throughout the story, including (as seen in the lower right corner) the historical Vlad. I didn't want to be strictly bound to the few existing portraits of the real man himself. I took my "post-curse" design and incorporated a few elements but I took some liberties with the hair (Draculea's appeared to be fairly curly in the paintings I've seen.) and changed the mustache. But I think you can tell who it's supposed to be at a glance. This whole exercise was sparked by a sketch I did last week showing a scene featuring Vlad from the first chapter. I've included that one as well.

Next is Dana Barnes. I think these drawings capture her character pretty well. She's obviously a little tomboyish but unmistakably feminine enough to catch Johnny's eye. A bit of a flirt but practical when she has to be.

And, finally, our hero. I think Johnny's hair still looks a little off. I'm not sure what it is. When I was writing the story, Johnny just always had long hair in my mind. I can't picture him without it. Hopefully, it's not too distracting.

Anyway, I hope you like them. Busy as I am, I'm on a real roll this week. Every free second, I've had a pen or pencil in my hand. It's becoming addictive. I just hope I can get some time at home so I can fulfill my obligations to Todd and Craig. I'm really feeling a little ashamed of myself!


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Power Girl

Last night, I was waiting for Suze to finish up work and ended up knocking out this Power Girl drawing in about an hour for no particular reason. I'm going to be getting very busy starting tomorrow so I wanted to get in as much work on it as possible and ended up pretty much just spitting it out. I think the quickness with which I sketched it helped in some ways and hurt in others. But I kind of like it.

I'm waiting for Suze again tonight and it's too rainy to limp (damned tendonitis) down to Legend again. So I'm sitting at my desk drawing character sketches for THE HAND ME DOWN HORROR. I spent some of the evenings while Suze was away tweaking a couple of the scripts and I'm really itching to start. I figured why waste time drawing superheroes so I got down to bidness. I'll post the results next time.


Monday, May 16, 2011

Wonder Woman

Suzanne's been on the road for work quite a bit lately. (Well. In the air, actually.) While she was in L.A. Last week, she had occasion to visit the fine folks at Warner Bros. and pick up a bunch of Wonder Woman swag in the gift shop. She's been a huge Wonder Woman fan since she was a little girl. I assume that originated with the Lynda Carter series in the '70s. (I was a big fan of Ms. Carter too but for entirely different reasons.)

With NBC passing last week on the new WONDER WOMAN pilot being shepherded by David Kelley, I figured the time was right for a drawing of the shapely amazon for my best girl. I have to admit that, beyond the old TV series and a few comic stories I'd read, I was never a huge follower of Wonder Woman.

Then Darwyn Cooke changed that when he did DC's NEW FRONTIER and showed me an all-new version of her that really resonated. This was a Wonder Woman I could get behind. (Shut up, pervs!)

She was curvy, tough, compassionate, warlike and cute, all at once. I loved the way he drew her. My tastes have always run to the, ah, rubenesque and here was a Princess Diana that could have been played by TWIN PEAKS' Sherilyn Fenn or a young Jennifer Connelly. Or even Elizabeth Taylor in her heyday. I'd love to see Hollywood be brave and take a chance on this version of her in this day of "thin is in."

I think they've missed two golden opportunities when they didn't make a movie with Catherine Zeta Jones who, sadly, is too old for the part now. And then they didn't steal Morena Bacarrin away from V for the TV pilot. As pretty as the actress is that they chose for the pilot, I don't think she was right for the part. Who would YOU like to see playing Wonder Woman?

Anyway, I hope you like the drawing. More importantly, I hope Suze likes it, since I'm giving it to her. This one was a toughie. I'm not that great at drawing women and I had a really difficult time with the line work as my vision has really been giving me problems lately. It's nothing serious (I think.) I probably just need some new glasses. Bifocals. Ugh. I'm considering Lasik surgery to correct the near-sightedness and then I would just need reading glasses for stuff close up. It's getting frustrating so I'll have to figure out something soon.

Anyway. Have a great Monday. Later.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

PvP and Bucko

I assume most of you are reading Scott Kurtz's online strip PvP (Player vs. Player) on a regular basis, right? If not, now's a great time to start because he's doing some of the coolest stuff he's ever done right now with the current LOLBat storyline. As Jack Nicholson says in THE SHINING, "GO...CHECK iT OUT!"


And while you're reading online comics, it wouldn't kill ya to look into Jeff Parker and Erika Moen's fun little strip BUCKO.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Hawkeye for Heywood

New rule. Don’t blog after 11:00 p.m. Whew. Care for some cheese with that whine? Sorry about that. After a nice overnight stay visiting my parents (requiring some fancy logistics in order to keep Tooncie properly medicated) my batteries are nicely recharged and I feel a lot better. Moving right along.

A while back, my buddy Mike (who posts as Heywood Jablomie...a screen name that cracked me up when I finally got it) emailed me. He had a DVD set he suspected I’d be interested in and offered it up. I was interested but I felt bad just taking it so he suggested I draw him something in return. He said he was on a Hawkeye “kick” lately and requested a quick sketch. Well, for what he was offering, I didn’t think a sketch on copier paper would be a fair trade so I drew this up on 11x17 bristol board and threw in some extras. I’ve long been a fan of the old Marvel Comics “floating head” covers and have wanted to draw one since I was a kid. When I “took over” for Mike, drawing for his friend Carlton (which lasted maybe 3 or 4 10-page comics along with a couple of failed long-form efforts) I managed to throw in a couple of them. Looking for reference for the classic Hawkeye outfit, I came across several old AVENGERS covers with the heads on them and knew I had to do it. I struggled mightily with the Scarlet Witch (I’m still bothered by her right eye) but the rest were a lot of fun.

I think the “Mike” influence is pretty obvious in the main figure but, to me, Iron Man looks like J.R., Jr. and with the Vision, I was trying for the Jim Starlin version. With Cap, that’s pure me.

I hope you like it.

Meanwhile, the trip to my old hometown, however brief, really got me re-stoked for the HAND ME DOWN HORROR. There were some character bits and parts I wasn’t satisfied that I couldn’t work out and some solutions actually came to me in my sleep. The story is set in a small, isolated Virginia town and getting back to Rustburg must have kicked something loose. It’s true what they say. You should always step away from your story for a while to recharge and then come back to it with fresh eyes.