Sunday, May 28, 2006

I've Never Been More Proud

I'd normally save this post for my daughter Arlaux's blog, but I just had share it here.
The other day, Arlaux (4) and my son Ayden (6) were trying to figure out which presidents were on which coin.
When they reached the penny, Arlaux triumphantly announced, "I know who's on the penny!"
"Who?" asked her brother.
"Johnny Cash!"
Kris Kristofferson was right, I suppose.
I've never been more proud.
Keep it here, boppers.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Motorcity Madhouse!

It was convention time again this weekend & it was off to Detroit, Michigan to the Motorcity Comicon, which is, oddly enough, held in Novi, Michigan. Anyway, this time around it was all for fun. I've not attended a comic book convention just for the "fun of it" since I first started this wacky ride some two years ago.
And this time around, it was a small army of us along for the ride. Barbi, Dwayne, his two boys Alec & Dylan and our friends Larry & Amanda "Sprinkles" Berker and their two boys Tyler & Jeremy all made the trek to geekdom this year. Aside from the radio konking out on us on the way home, the trip was uneventful, which is never the case.

One of our first and most frequented stops was the Inkslinger's table. There's not much more about this guy that I can say that I haven't said before. Since I'm not sure how he might take that, I'll say one more thing: Bill will soon be taking the inking reigns on Salem, AZ. His work on part one of Up Jumped the Devil was so awesome that Nik & I offered him the inking spot on Salem, AZ. It only seemed right as he is the book's #1 fan.

Pirates, Storm Troopers & Caped Crusaders, oh, my! The three seemed to be the preferred costumes this year artist Sherrie Spencer was more than happy to pose with one of my packs of candy cigarettes. Be sure to check her out.
Anybody into Nick Cave, Tom Waits & The Man In Black can't be all bad.

Sympathetic to my crusade as well (yeah, I said it) against the consumption of candy cigarettes, the Caped Crusader and Boy Wonder were more than willing to pose for this picture. I just want to make one thing clear. I'm against banning almost anything, and it's not my intention with candy cigarettes, I merely want the general public to realise that these candies are still being made. Do I have to say more? Knowing me, I probably do, so I'm in the process of putting together another blog to do just that. By the way, these guys were awesome and I owe them a big "thanks."

If you haven't read David Petersen's Mouse Guard, you have no idea what you've been missing. Issue one is currently sold out and issue three is due out in June. I picked up issue two Saturday, read it in the hotel and was blown away! David is also a super nice guy who, in spite of his busy work load of requested sketches, took the time to talk shop with me and pose for this picture. Perched upon this tree stump are all the characters, which he also hand made, in Mouse Guard. Check it out!

No, it's not Bat-Mite, just the best costume I saw all weekend.

Model, bow hunter & arachniphobe Nicole McClain poses behind the curtain of legendary George Perez and strikes a pose for a photo reference for an upcomg Salem, AZ postcard. Postcard supplied by the Inkslinger. Notice the orange t-shirt (if you can stop looking at Nicole for a minute).

The "Kerry" costume is coming together nicely thanks to the tireless efforts of both Nik Havert & Nicole and here's proof. As an artist, it just makes me proud beyond belief and even a bit giddy to see a walking, talking version of my two-dimensional creation. Nicole's willingness and gung-ho enthusiasm towards the whole project just fuels the excitement.

Nik, Nicole & yours truly pose for a group shot. A big "thanks" goes out to the incomperable (and tall) Dave Nestler for snapping this shot.
If the croud response we got while test running what we currently have of the costume is any indication of things to come, this thing's gonna be bigger than anything the three of us can imagine.

Flabbergasted by the Salem, AZ preview the Slinger let us run in Lucius Hears A Wha?, Nicole was more than happy to pose for a final quick flash.
Lucius Hears A Wha? not only wraps up the adventures of the Amazing Walter, but sports some major guest talent. Contributions from the likes of Stephen "Bad Music for Bad People" Blickenstaff, C.J. Filer & Bill "Don't Call It A Comeback" Loebs must be seen to be believed.

Keep it here, boppers...

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Images from SPACE!

And so another trip to SPACE has come and gone!
This convention was a special one for a lot of reasons. It not only marked the second SPACE appearance for Mr. Pickle Press himself, Nik Havert & myself, but it was also the largest gathering of the happy few that make up the Orange Tablecloth Front. Who or what the hell is the OTF? you might ask? Well, I'm glad you asked. Basically a few of us indy guys got together to form a support group to help promote and support each other against the staggering odds against us set up by The Man. We're not out to change the world, just to let comic book fans know that there's a huge chunk of iceberg just below the surface. Why orange? you ask? If you ask fellow OTF conspirator Bill "The Inkslinger" Wilkison, he'll tell you it's because nothing rhymes with "orange."
Above is a picture of myself (left) and Nik at the Pickle Press table just a few hours into the show. Aside from being set up across the aisle from Uko "Mr. Pin-Up" Smith, my only qualm about our area was the lighting. I wasn't the only one who noticed either. A number of artists I talked to had the same complaint.
By the way, Uko is an artist's artist and as humble as they come. More on him later...

For the life of me, I can't remember this guy's name, but he did an awesome picture of Vampirella for Nik. While the guy was working on it, I mentioned to Nik how the guy just had to be in Salem, AZ. Nik agreed and the guy was flattered. The Vampi drawing was awesome and as soon as I can get his name and website, you'll find it here, boppers.

Jay E. Fife (above) is not only a fantastic artist, but a fan as well, or most importantly, his daughter Erin is. After all, what's more important than inspiring the next generation? Jay poses here with a Wonder Woman drawing I did for her.
"What I don't get," I told him while leafing through his pin-up book, "is why does she want me to draw pictures for her?"
"Let me put it to you this way," he said, "she's not asking me to draw Wonder Woman for her."
That's probably the highest praise I've gotten since Steve The Dude Rude said, "I like that you're not afraid to use black."

Corey of Young American Comics was gracious enough to pose with a pack of candy smokes for my upcoming website deticated to the cancerous confectionary. YAC had some of the finest mini comics I've ever read. I particularly enjoyed Pair-O-Normal Investigators #1 in which Bigfoot & the Loch Ness Monster are paranormal investigators in Monstra City. Check out YAC's website, buy some stuff & support indy comics!

"Jam books" were all the rage this year. If you were an artist, it was only a matter of time before someone slipped one under your nose. For those of you not in the know, a jam book is just a piece of drawing paper, sometimes several pieces stapled together, with some form of story going on that you're asked to contribute a panel to. It's a great idea, but after about my fourth jam book, it occured to me that it's also a pretty good racket to garner some free orginal art.
The one you see above was, I believe, a hastily stapled scam to get some free art, so I got greedy and took the whole back cover. I realize it's fuzzy, but it's Nik and me standing at our table:
"Dude," says Nik, "you totally over-committed to that sketch."
"Dude," I reply, "I'm across the aisle from Uko Friggin' Smith!"
Thanks to the Slinger for that bit.
Uko was put back by the compliment.
No this isn't the back cover to a Molley Hatchet or Foghat album. I owe a Big 'Fro-sized thanks to Hollywood for providing me with this group shot of the OTF. With the exception of Joe Fuentes, the OTF were all present and accounted for. From left to right, are Mike "Can't Get Me No Satrysfaction" Indovina, myself, Hollywood, the Inkslinger & Nik. Keep it here, boppers for all the latest news about the OTF, yours truly and anything else that comes to mind. The countdown to SPACE 2007 is on...

Friday, May 12, 2006

Artist in Training

I know I usually reserve the pictures of my daughter Arlaux for her own blog, but I just wanted to share these here. Here's my little four-year-old artist-in-training working diligently at my desk.

For all the latest groovy news in her life, check out her blog: They Call Me "Boo-Boo."

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Manditory Kerry Pic!

Not since my last pice of request art have I done any drawings for the fun of it, which isn't to say that drawing isn't just plain fun anyway, but I've been so busy with my various projects that, sometimes it's fun to sit down and see what the paper's hiding.
In this case, it was a picture of Kerry Connelly I like to call "Cat's Cradle."
I'm thinking about turning this one into a print available for purchase at the conventions I'll be attending this year.
Well, that's all for now, boppers.