Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Happy Birthday Gene...

Let it be known I am a huge Roy Rogers fan....but, you have to give the devil his due sometimes. Without Gene Autry there would be no Roy Rogers. After all, his first major on screen time came in a Gene Autry movie, with his real name Leonard Slye. When Autry walked out on his Republic Pictures contract in 1938 Slye was re-named Roy Rogers and the fight was on for the greatest screen cowboy in history.
As much as I love watching old Roy Rogers movies, I can still sit through any Gene Autry flick too. Even though I could never understand why he wore a two gun belt, with only one holster. I have seen that in many westerns with others also, and I can not figure that one out.
Anyway, Happy Birthday Gene.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Don't Drink and Draw!

Warning to all aspiring artists, Don't Drink and Draw.... don't let cocktail hour get out of of hand because this is the results. Loose drawings! Tonight the arthritis in my hand and arm was acting up. The pain was throbbing, but I felt like I needed to work on something. A flight suit for 'Jack' - Jacqueline O'brian from the stand alone comic. I have never felt that I anchored her in the real world of the strip. I want her to be a strong female lead in the strip she appears in. So I patterned her after the strong female leads of the 30's films, like Ann Sheridan. But again this is a lesson in letting the Caniff cocktail hour getting out of hand. From what I read Milton Caniff had a passion for cocktail hour, but it seems I don't know when to stop when the pain in my hand and arm increase. Oh getting old sucks is all I can say. So the result is a very loose inked drawing of a flight suit of 'Jack's'. So I guess this sketch blog is about the good and the bad....so consider this the bottom of the barrel, or bottom of the bottle if you will.
Please excuse me .... the pain is so bad sometimes I just can't stand it, but I still have work to do to make headway. So just a warning to young artists. Control is a good thing, Lack of control is a bad thing.

Monday, September 21, 2009

The unstoppable Kong!

Well, I didn't think I was going to get around to inking this yet....but, Kong proved once again to be unstoppable. Mainly I think since - to put it mildly, I felt like hell sunday. A total sinus attack for some reason, maybe because tomorrow is the beginning of fall. And it seems today isn't starting off any better. I just wanted to post this before leaving for work this morning. If I didn't have a deadline at work today, I would probably take a sick day. But, work goes on, the rent must be paid.....hell I have to pay for those gliders too. And yet this is another piece for the Fallcon charity auction. Irony, maybe, but more the call of duty. Plus I try each year to out do myself, and what I feel is a bit of competition at the auction. Or maybe I just feel there should be competition at it. Each year I almost feel like not letting the pieces go. But then I like seeing people bid on them and hope it helps in some small way.
And as I said, I felt like hell yesterday. So I would ink for a couple of minutes, then blow my nose for ten minutes or so trying to breathe. When that happens I can't really do much brain work, so this is just raw inking from me. Trying to follow the lines, balance some blacks and whites, and do a bit of drybrushing, and some of that fantastic split brush that Mark Schultz has mastered as a technical skill. I do feel this was rushed a bit, just trying to get one more thing off my plate because ... we are all living on borrowed time .... just like the Challengers of the Unknown.
Also wanted to throw in....there isn't a quill mark on this.....only brush, except I signed it with a marker. I love the brush.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Progress on KONG...

Well I had some time to get around to the pencils for the Kong piece. Not much has changed since the full sized layout drawing in the last post. It was torture to get this thing scanned, I installed a update to my operating system the other night, and tonight - or rather early this morning found out it took out my scanner. I would be lost without a scanner. So about three or four hours of messin' with it all - looking on forums and trying to find someone with the same problems with the scanner model I have....anyway it all ended up costing about 80 bucks, I had to go to the only software known that works with this scanner and operating system. And now it is 4:30 in the morning, and I haven't been to sleep yet.....I am going to try to head that direction now. So hope you enjoy the pencils to Kong. I probably won't get to the inks just yet, I need to do some other work tomorrow....or later today.

Monday, September 14, 2009


Ok I realize this was a suggestion by Martin Powell for me to try for the auction at the coming Fallcon show. But since he suggested it I couldn't get it out of my mind. Of course between Martin and I, I would hate to think of the number of viewings of Kong that we have. I probably put it in about once a week or two as I work. I watch alot of serials, horror, adventure, and of course Kong as I work. It helps with the snappy patter (the language), the background images, the sounds and all.
I rarely ever do full size roughs, and I should do them all the time....another suggestion make by a super artist that I met. I know there are some problems with placement on this one, but I do think the dinos tail, spine and all lead up to the action and Kong. The Fay Wray gal is just eye candy and fun, as she hides behind the rock ducking the dinos' tail. Although not an actual exact scene from the film, I was more after the spirit of the fight and I didn't want to draw the tree that traps Fay.
So anyway thanks to my good friend Martin....here is the first ever drawing of Kong I ever did. Hopefully I will have time to flesh it out and lightbox it for a finished drawing in time for Fallcon.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Promotional item for cons and site

One thing I was thinking of, since I haven't finished a real Captain Spectre comic yet, was to add a promotional item to either help with sales of the patches and coins at cons. Or to just give away a few now and then to interested people that stop by the con table and talk with me about the strip. I remember as a kid buying hundreds of these cheap balsa wood gliders and having a blast flying them. So I found a place on line to order them. I have to buy a ton of them, but I think maybe in the long run it may help out. Again especially since I don't have a real comic to sell yet. Which really makes me mad at myself. But I really do plan on fixing that problem. Anyway here are the fast wing designs I did tonight. I am not real happy with them but I am running out of time to get them produced before Fallcon. I just think it might be great seeing them flying around the con as advertising. You never know if this stuff really works til you try it I guess. So Legionnaires let me know what you think.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Golden Age Superman Foreign Policy

Well the trial assignment is finally over. Now I can get back to the other things on my plate. And as I posted before one of them is to get some charity pieces ready for Fallcon. The Fallcon old website was down for awhile, but seems they were making a new one. So hit the link to see the guests list and all other sorts of goodies from a great comics convention.
So here is the Superman piece, I just finished inking it and had a blast doing this one. Hopefully I can think of some more pieces like this to get done before the con. Which is coming up fast!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

So many irons in the fire....

Believe me Loyal Legionnaires, I am not falling down on production of the Captain Spectre strip. But, I do have many, many irons in the fire - sort of speak. Fallcon, the great Minnesota comic convention, is rushing toward me. I always contribute to the three charity auctions that they have there. Just feel like I should pay back something for such a great con and a great time. I also always try to come up with something that Nick, the organizer of the con, wants to bid on. Sometimes I hit one, and sometimes I don't. Last year I pencilled a Doc Savage piece and Joe Rubenstein inked it. So this morning I had this idea of a golden age Superman borrowing bombs from an airfield to do a little foreign policy mission. So I just had to rough it out before I lost the idea. As I scanned it I noticed his forward leg is a bit too short, but I will fix that later. Just wanted to show it off a bit, mainly for the idea, and to make sure I got it down. I will need to do two more pieces at least in the next few weeks for the auctions. So I will be showing those here too.
As I said sometimes too many irons in the fire....game animation, a commission piece I owe a Loyal Legionnaire for doing me a great favor, the virus project, and of course continuing the Captain Spectre strip.

The Terror Hound from Planet X

I, of late, have been trying to design some creatures for various things. One mainly for the Captain Spectre strip. Don't worry he won't show up very soon. It is along way off. So I guess it really isn't a sneak peek. Just more of a development kind of thing. So I thought I would try a six legged type of creature. Creature design is an art unto itself. And I haven't ever done much of it. Guess I am better at robots and machinery and the like. I do need to work on my creatures more. So tonight I thought I would tackle one, mainly since I am not feeling up to par. But that is another story I don't plan to bore you with. Since hopefully you come here to see art, and take part in the process of creation - especially things to do with Captain Spectre. So without further ado - I present the Terror Hound of Planet X!!!

Friday, September 4, 2009

A sneak peek into the distance future.

Also just to see all you loyal Legionnaires that no matter what, I always try and work on some kind of Captain Spectre project. It is the only thing keeping me sane in this world of today.

I am always thinking of ways to expand the character into all art forms. Animation, comics, or anything I can work on with the freedom to do anything I want.

So here is a tiny tiny piece of a storyboard I am working on, that hopefully someday will find it's way to my animation table.

I must apologize for the rotten verison, It doesn't really look very good in this format. Believe me the original looks alot better. But with size restrictions and all, it kind of broke up this small and with the low bandwidth. After all it is just a sneak peak. Just to give you an idea of the myriad of things I work on with the good Captain.

I kind of feel like a new age Milton Caniff...

As I read more of Milton Caniff's life, I of course learn that he worked as an illustrator for the press. Back in those days not all stories received the luxury of a camera. So editors used to get ahold of the art dept. which at the time contained artists!! What a concept. Anyway they used to come up with art for fires, trials, and of course the eventual filler space in the newspapers.
'Milton started this way' was all I kept saying in my mind as I sit on those church pew type very un-ergonomic govt. benches at the back of the courtroom.
Even though I can't discuss any of the trial I thought I would post a couple of the sketches just to give you a taste. I have been zapping out four or five of these a day so of course the quality isn't great.
Sometimes I even have to lay one out, and put it aside til the people get back into almost the positions they were in. And of course from the back people aren't very interesting, and I see alot of backs of heads. You may not think this is much of a problem but on any given day there are at least four guys in the room with shaved heads.....it must be some kind of tribal law thing going on now a days.