Back in what seems an eternity ago now, when the Mac was really starting to increase it’s computing power exponentially, one of my then studio mates Chuck Wojtkiewiscz had a brand new POWERMAC G3. He was gracious enough to bring it to the studio for everyone to use. I had a large 12×17 inch flatbed scanner that I brought from home and WALLAH…(!) we had a sweet new graphics setup. I was going through an old CD of files of mine that I had burned from Chuck’s computer and came across the turnaround art for a SERRA vinyl statue that DYNAMIC FORCES produced some years ago when the TELLOS comic was in full swing. I had done the line art for the sculptor– and Chuck, who had become a MASTER of marker toning, suggested that he would be happy to tone the piece to make it even more dimensional for the sculptor to work from. So, here’s the wonderful results– and Chuck… thank you again after all this time.

I just came across a sketch that I did for a VAMPI cover for HARRIS COMICS years ago. I had done a few different versions, and this one was my favorite, but they went with another sketch that was a bit more action oriented. After Augie De Blieck over at COMICBOOK RESOURCES pointed out that he couldn’t remember what the final printed FLASH AND IMPULSE cover from the SINS OF YOUTH event that were the subject matter of yesterday’s post– I hunted around to see if I could find a printed file version of the VAMPI cover, but alas, I could not. And I searched the web for the FLASH AND IMPULSE cover YESTERDAY– and couldn’t find one. Oh, well– I tried. But here’s the sketch anyway….

Steven Grant’s new PERMANENT DAMAGE column (ALSO at COMICBOOK RESOURCES) has his impressions of COMICON INTERNATIONAL– which frankly, surprised me. Steven usually takes a very pragmatic (or cynical, depending on your interpretation) view of the comics industry– but he left this year’s con with a sense of high optimism and enthusiasm coming from the publishers at the show. I hope that this is truly the case– and that the kinds of things that I’ve been hearing about folks seeing the beginnings of a big turn around in the industry’s fortunes– as well as a greater acceptance of comics OTHER than superhero comics are really on the horizon. Perhaps the massive successes of books like the huge BONE COLLECTED EDITION from Jeff Smith and FLIGHT from IMAGE COMICS as well as the promising start to MARVEL’S MARVEL AGE line of books in both the Direct Market as well as the digests they’re selling at stores like TARGET are heralds of a return of younger readers– and a return of more open, reader friendly comic books. I think that what has begun to be called the “BENDIS-IFICATION” of comics — and the publication of the IDENTITY CRISIS event (try showing your kids THAT one) have taken us so far away from the colorful superhero characters as characters that can be entry level subject matter for kids as we can get. Darwyn Cooke, the writer and artist of the incredible DC: THE FINAL FRONTIER was lamenting recently online the co-opting of the greatest childhood comics characters by folks like Bendis and Meltzer, who have turned them into characters no kid could fathom anymore– and he was lambasted for it. Personally, I couldn’t agree more with Cooke. So– hopefully there will be a new, brighter age of comics that will be welcoming to younger (AND OLDER– comics don’t HAVE to have rape and long boring “psueudo-Mamet” dialogue in them to be enjoyable to adults) readers. I think that things like FLIGHT and others being done by some smaller publishers can help that happen.

OK– enough editorializing. I’m back to work.


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