Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Christmas time.......

Hello Loyal Legionnaires...... if any are still around.

I did manage a Christmas Captain Spectre image this year, in spite of all else. It took forever to do it seemed like. Stealing a minute here and there, while struggling with the day job still, and Carson of Venus.
Seems my health is really starting to effect my working speed and stamina. I am barely keeping up with Carson and the day job deadlines.  I know people don't like it, you think i do?????  Things i used to pencil and ink in a day now takes days!!!! You think i could possibly like that as a life!! Not in your life.   I know they are thinking of letting me go from the day job, hell i haven't had a raise or a good review in years.  They have their paper trail in place, so it is only a matter of time.  But that is ok i am ready for it.....anytime.  If they think they have won, the laugh is on them. I win.

Other than that, mentally i think i am ok....just the body is failing fast.  Tough to hold a pencil, to move my arms, Hell to do anything anymore.  Plus when i do move i have to contend with a form or nerve tremors.... they used to call it palsy back in the day..... but anyway i have it and it gets a little worse each day.... anyway enough of that shit.

Christmas holds such wonderful memories from childhood.  i wish i could make christmas like that again someday.  But, i just can't.  It just doesn't happen anymore.  Things are sure lost in the dust of the past.  i just hope everyone can understand that, that needs too.

Anyway, here is the Holiday image from Captain Spectre, and Rocket this year.  Consider this the family photo, the Holiday newsletter, and all from me you all of you out there........ Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!!! .....i hope it is a better one ........

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

been a very long time.........

Hello out there Loyal Legionnaires..... if anyone is left?

I have no excuses for missing postings, i always seem to have something else going.  And again mainly it has been my health.  My doctor i have had for close to a decade retired, so i had to go thru the process for finding a new one.  With a lot of my affections that is somewhat of a chore.  On top of that i had to have some surgery, minor but the recovery process has been a long one.  Other than that i am still trying to hold down my day job, and produce a page for Carson of Venus each week, skipping every fourth week as a rest period.

This is a sample, actually the 84th page in the series, getting close to the end of the Burroughs book Lost on Venus.

So once again i apologize for not updating.  I know you are tired of hearing that.  But once again Captain Spectre isn't dead until i am...... and i am far from it, i hope..........

thanks to you, Loyal Legionnaires!!!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

my god it is Christmas time!!!!....

OK loyal Legionnaires.....what can i say.  Once again i have been so out of it that all this time has gone by without a new posting.  i am sorry.  The Carson strip and the day job just keep me going and i never seem to get much time to myself.  

Never fear tho, as the good Captain is never out of my mind.  He actually amazes me that he never leaves.  Other characters i have created come and go, but he never leaves.  So i looked thru some quick sketches and found this one. i repurposed it into this year's christmas post.  So i hope you enjoy it, and have a great holiday season! 

Each day brings me closer to being able to retire from the day job.  i hope i make it, as i have plans.  

But we must take each day, good or bad.  Or like in my case there are no more good days, only bad and worse.  i also know it is that way for some of my loyal Legionnaires, and i do hope we have more 'good' days than bad or worse.  We all have to stick together in this.  So again Merry Christmas, Happy New Year..... or whatever the holidays you observe.  Just be safe and well in your travels. 


Saturday, October 11, 2014

Crazy days...... normal in other words....

Again i apologize for not posting..... but it seems i am in a rut of sorts.

By day i am working three projects at the day job.  While i wait on feedback on one i work on the other ones and rotate on and on.  By night and weekends i pencil, ink and letter Carson of Venus™ for Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc., as i am sure most of you know already.  here is a sneak peek of the next Carson..... he is the 'guest' in a Venusian mansion, but thinking he is really a prisoner.  Tune in to find out at: Edgar Rice Burroughs comics. 

It is still only 1.99 a month and you get close to 12 strips a week.  The talent is growing too.  Comic greats like Roy Thomas, Chuck Dixon, Rick Leonardi, Tom Grindberg, lots of others join Martin Powell, writer of several of the strips, me, and Diana Leto on Carson Napier's story.

Ok, that is my week.... and most all of my time.  Especially now as Carson's story is moving to new lands.  We are finally getting to more 'civilized' areas of the planet. So we have new monsters, new weapons, new styles of architecture, costumes, and even vehicles on the land and in the air to design.  All that takes some time.  So give it a try sometime. Design a whole world. Grab a book and try to make it come to life. Then you will know the world i live in.  The Carson story winds through five novels....well four novels and a novella.  We are only about two-thirds thru the second book, so we have a good bit to go.  And of course with more things to design, visualize, and figure out.

Oh also working on some ideas for some game illustrations, so make that three jobs i am trying to get thru, and with my hands and rotten nervous system it is getting tough.

'til next time Loyal Legionnaires..... things are also moving forward at a snails pace on your hero and mine..... Captain Spectre - Phantom Soldier of the Skies!!!!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

another one of those days.....

It always seems to happen. No matter what i try or do, when i get just a little bit ahead on the Carson of Venus™strip, somedays my nervous system falls apart.  I stay on my meds, i have too or it gets worse, but today my nerves took over and i have had the 'shakes' all day.  I never know from day to day when it is going to happen.  But today was one of those days when it hit with a vengeance.  I barely got the next Carson strip done and lettered and sent off.  Man i hate it.  With my eyes shaking, and hands it makes it really tough to hold a brush and pound out an inked page.  It also makes me very tired.  Think of it as trying to ink and see while being in one of those old style weight reduction machines....

.... remember those things???? well that is what today has been like.  Anyway i did finish the page for next week, and some color guides for some new people arriving in the strip.

Also we are getting to the more civilized areas of Venus in the strip, so actually working on more designs for buildings, cities, more ray guns, military uniforms, and even ground vehicles.  

Also one of the panels i previewed on Facebook got a good response from people so sneaking it here too as some readers don't do the Facebook thing.... yea you know who you are, and didn't want you guys to miss out.   it is a simple panel, but like i said got a good response from fans and even Jim at Edgar Rice Burroughs inc.  So all in all that made me happy.  

'til next time......thanks for tuning in.....i am going to go see if i can get rid of the 'shakes' ...... thanks for understanding.   

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Carson of Venus merchandise!!!

Edgar Rice Burroughs inc. has started producing tee shirts to help spread the word about all the online goodness that the strips are producing.  And of course one of the shirts is a cool Carson of Venus™ shirt.  They also have done shirts for all the other strips, from Tarzan to John Carter.... cool stuff is happening. And i expect more things to come from them.  so give them a look see at

The shirts run just a bit small, so take that with a grain of salt when ordering your size.  I have one, yes of course a Carson one, and they are great quality shirts.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

If you don't get it right the first time.....

Ok, i won't whine about being so busy and in ill health i can't update my blog... cause i always do that.  I hate to even mention anything about it.  So that is all i will say this time.

Anyway, what i wanted to talk a bit about is - if you don't get it right the first time, you might want to try again....

i got a script the other day, of course by Martin Powell - writer on Carson of Venus™, that said in one panel: Cut to a close-up of Nalte, wide-eyed with wonder.  So as the penciller/inker i have to translate that into some form of image.  Of course characters need to act in two ways. One way is thru the dialog, the spoken word or the thoughts in a caption block.  You know, caption blocks are the rectangular blocks of descriptors or thoughts in panels that help tell the story.  The other way for them to act is thru the body posture or body language of the character.  Think about that like the way actors in silent films push the limit and overact to get the point across.

In the Carson of Venus™ strip, the female character Nalte is on a quest with Carson Napier to find and rescue Duare, Carson's love in the story.  Anyway Nalte is a very strong and fiery character who has more or less fallen for Carson.  But, Carson only has eyes for Duare at first.  So i have to remember that when posing Nalte.  Thru her actions and expressions i am always trying to show a little of that forlorn love or lust.  During this current strip, Nalte watches as Carson takes on three armed zombies.  (That is right, Edgar Rice Burroughs in the 1930's was using zombies as an army of bad guys. Martin and i have dubbed them the "Zombies from Venus", cause that would make an awesome serial or film.)  So here is poor Nalte watching the man she wants showing off his prowess whooping up on these three zombies.  And she likes what she sees.  So i placed her partly in the shadows, as in the script the zombies have ignored her and ganged up on Carson.  And this was the original panel i created.

I wanted Nalte wide eyed, and i also thought that i would give her mouth that kind of 'hmmm, boy' like reaction.  This panel, well the idea was sound, didn't work out.  I tried more shadow and cross hatching, but nothing i did was crappy, and a lost cause.  The eyes didn't look right, they were also too far apart, the nose too small, and damn - just try drawing someone licking their lips and see how hard that really is to do.   i cut it out of the strip and now had a window to fill.  

So i thought i would go a bit more slutty. Pushing the acting, like in a silent movie.  So i pushed her head back, making her look thru her eyes in that over the cheek sexy look.  This also pushed the emphasis on her lips and tongue.  Which is still hard as hell to get right.  So this was the result. 

So i liked this version.  But then the more i thought about it and looked at it, the more slutty she seemed.  So i thought i would ask a couple of other people about this panel.  Well they got the same feeling i was feeling - too slutty.  And we can't have that.  So back to the drawing board.  And i was guided to more of a subtle up look with her, and this was the result...

So all you readers and fans out there - this is just a little peak into what a struggling comic artist goes thru on a daily basis.  If at first you don't succeed - go back to the drawing board !  Sometimes a drawing, a pose, some perspective, or atmosphere just doesn't work out like you want it.  So don't be afraid of that deadly tool : the eraser!!!  Sometimes you just have to start all over. And sometimes over and over...

Of course this adds to the time it takes to produce a page, a book, a story.  Some people just think it is all easy and just flows out in a few minutes.  But, there are so many processes in the production of a drawing or story.  Layout, design, posing, acting, anatomy and lighting are just a few of the things you have to try to be good at to tell your story.  

Just never give up.... keep drawing... keep drawing each day, day in and day out.  It doesn't matter if you are feeling bad, outright sick, tired, hot, cold, or depressed - you must try to draw each day.  You have to love it and crave it...... now go create something!!! 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

my god!!!! has it really been almost half a year gone by!

Well, loyal Legionnaires, i am truly sorry for not posting…but to be honest not much has changed. Health issues still abound, and the day job goes on and on, as does Carson of Venus™.

Carson is within weeks of completing the first full years run. And we should adventure on from there. We are well into the second book of the series, and we plan to get all five of them in, before we possibly move Carson Napier into new and exciting adventures on Venus. So stick around. As he is becoming more and more like Flash Gordon with all the extra women hanging around.

Also made it down to Kansas City twice this year. Once to the Kansas City PlanetComicCon. Man that show has gotten large. I sure wish i had a Captain Spectre book to sell, but i was there to try to get people to sign up for the Burroughs online strips. 

And then had a artist alley table at the Spectrum Live event there.  And got to talk with friends Mark Schultz and Greg Manchess.  Love talking with those guys if only for ten minutes. 

Well like i say every time….i will try to post more often. The strange thing is the older i get the faster time slips away!!!! Elders always told me this, but i never believed it until now.  

I have one more con in me before thinking of giving up the life of a con goer. It is just getting too expensive, and my traveling days are just about over.  But we shall see….i never know from day to day.   

thanks Loyal Legionnaires……keep the faith, one day Captain Spectre will return~~ 


Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Heading into 2014…...

Well here i am with my head hung low….. as i venture into 2014.

2013 wasn't the greatest year i have ever had, as i am sure if you look over some of the posts will tell you.  I am still stricken by the loss of my best friend, Chopper.  The toll the medicines are taking on my mind and body, and of course the failing of my nerves, joints, muscles etc.

I won't really go into any of the details, just know that i am NOT involved with the Tarzan - Jungle Tales book that will be coming out in 2014.  Some things happened with the deadline and i just couldn't produce the quality of art that i wanted to produce in the timeframe allowed.  Maybe if i didn't have a 40+ hours a week day job, and a page of Carson of Venus to pencil, ink, and letter each week maybe i could have made it.  i was sad to have to let Tarzan go like that, but i just couldn't think of putting out sub par work for that character.  So here are a couple of the 'pages' i had worked on for my part. And i hope you can see what i was planning on doing here.  Pushing it. The more time you have with art the better it gets, with this type of stuff.

So anyway, i can only seem to hope to hold down my day job, and the weekly Carson of Venus strip over at Edgar Rice Burroughs™ site.  

Of the Carson of Venus strip has reached a milestone for sure….. we have ended the first novel 'Pirates of Venus' in the strip and jump into the next novel of the five book series 'Lost on Venus'.  the Carson Napier novels have been a bit special to me since i was a kid.  They were my favorites behind the Tarzan novels in thrills for me.

Here is a extra special sneak at week 31 of the Carson of Venus™ series we are doing.  As we flash back to 1930s in LA at a ERB book signing/release of Pirates of Venus.  Also showing the psychic link between ERB and Carson Napier as the story builds.

Well again i can't promise updates more often, but again i will try.  This new year, i would like for my health to stabilize more, so i could produce more work….. and by work i mean CAPTAIN SPECTRE!!!  I have come to realize i am not much good to anyone but myself and Captain Spectre. So other than the day job, Carson and the Captain…..i am all alone here.  

thanks to my Loyal Legionnaires…..and you know who you are!!!!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

my best friend is gone..... for Chopper

well loyal legionnaires...... it pains me greatly to post this time around.... there will be no art, no talk of projects............... just my sadness.  the greatest friend i have ever had is gone. 

he was every my guardian and protector..... my alarm clock.... the boss of the whole place.  

he was and will be in my every thought..... forever.....

i would lose sight of him as he went off on his adventures on the farm... but then i would turn and see a sight like this and i would laugh....i don't laugh very much, and probably won't for a very long time.... not a real laugh, just those society ones. 

he sat with me the long hours i work somedays... he would only complain a little at the idleness of creating a comic page... but finally i would give in and we would walk and sit outside..... 

he loved to go to town to the store.... the people at the stores we visited knew him, the mailman knew him.... we went everywhere together for so long...... 

on cold nights he would jump up in the recliner with me.... you wouldn't think a dog of his size as a lapdog, but he would sleep thru the night in my arms...... 

he was the friend, companion, partner, guardian, alarm clock, and distraction i needed at the time..... now he rests outside in one of his favorite places.... it is outside one of his favorite windows to watch out of when he was on guard...... i will visit him everyday and feel the heaviest loss i have ever known... 

one last goodbye....................................................... chopper.