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2010 SKETCHBOOK (60 pages, black/white/tone, print run 100 copies)


Friday, November 30, 2012

Cheap inspiration....

I have been having trouble focusing on new drawings since I finished the second Dark Crystal book. As crazy as it sounds, it was just real hard to start something if I knew that I wasn't getting paid for it. I just found all sorts of excuses: reading Robert B. Parker, watching Netflix movies, browsing amazon....

By chance, I was downtown and stopped by The Recycled Bookstore. They have a pretty big comic book (excuses me, "Graphic Novel") section. Looking through all of their stuff I found Hellboy Library Collection #3. That book reprints "Conqueror Worm", "Third Wish", and  "The Island" which are the last Hellboy mini-series that Mike Mignola did before leaving the art chores to other artists. It's a nice large format, really showcases the art and Dave Stewarts coloring, but I already have all the mini-series as individual issues so I wasn't real tempted to buy it (just like I wasn't real tempted to buy the other volumes from this Library Edition series). But never the less I pulled it off the shelf and flipped through it...and got hit by a ton of BRICKS.

In the back is a Sketchbook section that has 9 pages of Mignola's first attempt at the Island storyline. 9 fully inked pages that were scrapped and never used and after that there were 6 more penciled pages of Mignola's second attempt that was also never used. Seeing all this artwork, without color for the inked pages and with some blue pencil construction lines for the penciled pages was just great. Just to see how the pages are composed and how the structure for the figures and the backgrounds is laid I bought the book. $27. I have not stopped drawing since :)

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Many Faces of Batman

From a project that will not see the light of day: my model sheet for different lighting on Batman's mask.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Dark Crystal, APE, Outlaw Territory, White Wolf....

Three new projects with my artwork will be published before the end of the year.

Dark Crystal Vol 2 published by Archaia. This will be a 86 page original graphic novel written by Joshua Dysart, drawn by me, and colored by Lizzy John.

Outlaw Territory #3, will have a story written and colored by Ryan Sook, and drawn by me.

White Wolf is publishing a number of New World Order books and I just compiled 4 full page illustrations for one of the books, Conventions of New World Order. It was awesome and a lot of fun to be back in the World of Darkness.

If you are in the mood to see any of the original artwork from the above mentioned projects (and a lot of other stuff as well), come by Alternative Press Expo (APE) in San Francisco, October 13-14. I will be sharing a table #740 with the talented Charles Yoakum (check out his blog for some excellent art). Come by and say "hi"...if you print this blog post you will get a "no prize"...wait, a "yes, wait....

Monday, July 30, 2012

Hijinx, August 4 @ 11am!

Hijinx will celebrate 30 years of selling!

I'll be there to help celebrate, show off some Dark Crystal artwork, and buy some comics! Here is the official announcement:

Hijinx Comics' 30th Anniversary Sale is this Saturday, August 4th, from 11:00am - 6:00pm.

There will be thousands of 50-cent comics on sale, storewide deals, prizes, refreshments and creator signings to boot!

Join Mick Gray (Batman & Robin, Promethea), Alex Sheikman (Dark Crystal, Robotika), John Fleskes (Flesk Publications) and the whole Hijinx crew, in celebrating 30 years of the best durn funny book proprietor-ing the south bay has seen in... well... Thirty Years.

So: take a moment to mark Hijinx Comics on your calendars, iPhones and Androids for THIS SATURDAY's Huge Summer Sale!

We look forward to seeing you all,

Your Friends at Hijinx Comics

Saturday, June 30, 2012

To an aspiring writer....

I did something new, I published my first digital Kindle book. Talk about the ultimate in self-publishing!

I have been working on a story that was inspired by "The Count of Monte Cristo", except that I changed the setting to Stalinist USSR circa 1938. Just like "The Count" there is love, greed, jealousy...with forced labor camps (gulag), shtrafbat (penal battalions), and WWII. And of course it's all about revenge.

I finished the first chapter and I decided to try to publish it, but not only to share it, but also to try to find a writer who is willing to take on the challenge of scripting it. I have always heard that writers, who want to work in comics, have a hard time finding artists. Well here is an opportunity. I have a drawn story that I would like to get scripted and if all goes well I would like to get chapter two on the way as well (I am even poking for a title for this project). So if you are an aspiring writer (or if you know of an aspiring writer), give it a look:

Friday, June 15, 2012

Thursday, June 07, 2012


It got inked and I added gray tones...

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Walter Simonson and Artist's Editions

There has been an interesting trend in comic art lately....forget fancy computer coloring, lets just try to reproduce the line artwork as close as we can to the original. This very much appeals to me, because I enjoy seeing how the artists approached the final stage of inking and I believe I always learn a lot from being able to see the technique used. Judging by the response that IDW is getting to their Artist's Editions, I am not the only one who is interested in seeing the artwork "up close and personal".

In the last few months there has been a lot of announcements for new books that fall into that general category. From IDW there are editions of work by Bernie Wrightson, Neal Adams, Dave Stevens, Walter Simonson, John Romita Sr.,Will Eisner, Wally Wood, Sergio Aragonez, David Mazzucchelli, and Joe Kubert (thanks Norm!). Fantagraphics announced artist centered collections for Jack Davis, Al Williamson, Wally Wood, and Harvey Kurtzman. Titan Books has just announced that it will produce an Artist Edition (AE) of Archie Goodwin/Walter Simonson's "Aliens" adaptation re-scanned from Simonson's original inked pages...there will in fact be two editions of the Alien AE. One edition to be sold at amazon and one that can only be ordered through Diamond (via a comic book store) that will contain a signed book plate by Simonson (for those interested in seeing more information about the two different editions, go and visit Alien: Illustrated Story facebook page).

I was thinking about how this trend just sort of sprung up out of nowhere...and realized it has actually been building up for a while and made an interesting connection.

I think the first books that I was aware of, that were re-shot from original artwork and were reproduced in black and white, were the books produced Russ Cochrane that reprinted the EC comics and later a set of books that reprinted Al Williamson's Star Wars newspaper strips. Both sets of books are pretty expensive now (they were originally published in 1970's) and I have only seen a few of them. My impression is that the line work is crisp and the paper quality is excellent, but it does not look like the original boards (in other words you can't see the white out or other imperfections, like coffee stains). The volumes were oversized, but they were not reproduced the same size as the originals, the images had to be reduced.

Later on, Wrightson started printing his Frankenstein portfolios in what appeared to be 1-to-1 proportions and when a friend of mine showed me the plates I was blown away by the reproduction. I remember thinking that this was incredible stuff.

The next big development happened 15 years later Insight Studios published "Al Williamson's Adventures", all the pages re-shot from the originals and printed with technology that has seen a lot of improvement.

A few years later John Fleskes published "Al Williamson Flash Gordon" and "Mark Schultz's Xenozoic Tales". Both volumes re-scanned from the originals and getting the best reproduction possible. John also went a step further and started printing Al Williamson's archives, studies by Al Williamson scanned in in color at high resolution and printed on high quality was just like holding Al Williamson's sketchbook in your hands.

Shortly after that IDW announced their first Artist Edition of Dave Stevens Rocketeer, which was scanned in from originals and printed full size on thick paper so it felt like holding original pages (and by the way, I am not suggesting that IDW copied any concepts here, they were building up to the Artist Editions for a couple of years by putting out nicer and nicer books...just witness the series of Rocketeer albums and their "growth" in both physical size and quality of reproduction and their reprints of Kevin Nowlan's "Grimwoods Daughter" and Jorge Zaffino's "Winter World" (both printed comic book size, but re-scanned from originals or original stats)).

What I found interesting about this is that Al Williamson's name has been closely related to all of this. From the first Ross Cochrane's reprints to the upcoming Fantagraphic books, Al Williamson's work is always getting the recognition it deserves. It has also been stated that Al Williamson loved art and has tried to keep most of his originals, which now is allowing publishers to go and re-scan the work without having to track it down. My understanding, from reading a bunch of on-line articles, is that Walter Simonson has also been able to hold on to much of his artwork, which might mean there will be more Simonson Artist Editions available as well.

So what's next? I vote for a Michael Golden Artist Editon or a John Buscema/Alfredo Alcala Artist Editon of a Conan story.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

I never thought I would see this...Wrightson...Adams...Artist Editions!!

This might be old news, because the solicitations were made last month, but because I don't get Previews, this was news to me. WOW! To think that it will be now possible to get something that is that close to an original of the Muck Monster!!!
What batch of pages can be next? Wrightson's Black Cat? Golden's short Nam stories? Kevin Nowlan's Johnny B. Quick? Sandy Plunkett's Black Panther? Jim Steranko's Tower of Shadows? CORBEN!?!?!?
Bernie Wrightson’s The Muck Monster: Artist’s Edition Portfolio
IDW Publishing is pleased to announce the first Artist's Edition portfolio, featuring the incredibly intricate detail of Bernie Wrightson's The Muck Monster. As with all Artist's Editions books or portfolios, the original art is meticulously scanned in color and from the actual original art. BW • $29.99 • 7 prints • 14.5” x 19” Bullet points: • The First IDW Artist’s Edition Portfolio! All pages scanned directly from the original art!

Neal Adams’ Thrill Kill: Artist’s Edition Portfolio
Neal Adams redefined the look of comics in the 1970s. His groundbreaking dynamic storytelling, coupled with a sense of realism that was never before seen in mainstream comics, has made Adams one of the most influential artists of the last 50 years. He was responsible for what many consider to be the definitive version of Batman, as well as being the co-creator of one of the Caped Crusader’s greatest villains: Ras Al Ghul. He has produced near legendary runs on Green Lantern, Deadman (in Strange Adventures), the Avengers, the X-Men and many more. Now IDW is pleased to present one of Neal's outstanding stories in the Artist's Edition Portfolio format. Each page scanned from the original art to match in exacting terms the look and feel of his original art. BW • $29.99 • 8 prints • 12” x 18”

Tuesday, May 15, 2012


I was going to post some new sketches, but my memory stick "crashed" and I will need to the meanwhile, here is a random page from the upcoming Dark Crystal volume 2. Once that is approved, the page will be scripted, lettered, and colored.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Dark Crystal take 2 and Al Williamson

The signing at Merced's Red Sky Comics was great. I got to see some old friends, meet some new fans, and drew sketches pretty much non stop....does not mean I drew a lot of sketches, just means I am real slow :) I was pleasantly surprised to see how many Dark Crystal fans are out there! I got to spend a little bit of time with JH and Wendy Williams and I got to see some of Jim's art work from the upcoming Batwoman #12 and #13...outstanding. I kept telling him that the work deserves to be printed in the same format as IDW's Artist's Edition books. Wonderful art, progressive storytelling, and great "acting" by the characters (that is one of the hardest things to do). So all in all a great day...except I got lost on my way back and ended-up driving through Modesto, Stockton, Tracy, Livermore, and Milpitas before I got back to San Jose. I have just finished looking through the website and I pre-ordered a bunch of books! Fantagraphics if putting out a line of books that reprints EC stories grouped by particular artists. They will have a volume devoted to Wally Wood, a volume for Al Willamson (with some stories inked by Frazetta!), and a volume by Jack Davis. How can you NOT pre-order that!?!?!? Other things on pre-order: "Judas Coin" by Walter Simonson "Rio" by Doug Wildey "Woodwork" by Wally Wood "Bible" By Joe Kubert and Nestor Redondo "Genius: Illustrated" by Alex Toth "Green Lantern" By Len Wein and Dave Gibbons On the drawing board: Dark Crystal Volume 2, page 32...........

Sunday, April 22, 2012

FCBD at Red Sky Comics

On May 5, I will be doing a signing at Red Sky Comics in Merced.

I had a wonderful time on my previous visit meetings lots of folks who were interested in the upcoming Dark Crystal graphic now, since the book has been published, I'll be able to check in and see if they liked the final result.

To anyone interested, the signing will be from 2:00-to-5:00 pm.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Frank Bellamy Heros the Spartan for sale

I am listing 3 Frank Bellamy books on e-bay. I bought these from a guy who placed an ad in a British fanzine, so I got a feeling these are "bootleg" editions, but this was the only way I could get my hands on some Frank Bellamy Heros The Spartan work. Now I am ready to find a new home for them :) Over 100 pages of incredible art, by the master!

Heros The Spartan by Frank Bellamy on ebay

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Dark Crystal on NY Times Best Sellers list

As of February 12, Dark Crystal is #5!
The New York Times
Thanks to Jeff for the link!

Friday, February 03, 2012

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Dark Crystal page 3 inked

In the printed version, this page got reversed. It made more sense to me in it's original layout.

Saturday, January 14, 2012