Monday, June 30, 2008

"Escape from Vietnam"

Well, it turns out that all the amazing things I had heard about the Heroes Con were correct. From getting picked up at the airport to the art auction on Saturday to the wonderful hotel room and beyond, I had a great time. And as if all that wasn't enough, my girlfriend and parents joined me on Saturday to help round out the family affair.

Pictured above is the 20" x 30" painting I made for the art auction. It took me a little over 3 hours and it was tons of fun. I haven't painted anything that large in quite some time and it was a welcome change. The pressure to create on the spot forces me to make snappier decisions and not get bogged down in excessive planning.

This is the painting roughly midway through. I asked one of my commission patrons what I should do and he replied, "old school Iron Man." I really enjoyed the movie's take on the original armor, so I did my own interpretation with a nod to the original comic, which is set in Vietnam.

Here's a close-up at the midway point, exemplifying the tin can look I was going for.

The art supplies were provided for us by the convention and we painted right in front of the crowds. I had more supplies available to me than when I'm home.

This is my set-up in Artist Alley, which really should be called something else at Heroes. It easily took up half of the convention hall, maybe more. Above me is my mirror stand that I bring to most cons. It allows people to see what I'm drawing without too much effort on their (or my) part. Eventually, I'll post a detailed blueprint for this contraption, which always gets me the most compliments at cons.

And last but not least, here is Iron Man... and some kid doing a... robot dance? Who knows? All I can say is that I wish Iron Man's undies were a little... snugger.

Ah yes, I almost forgot. If you by any chance have jury duty today at the Brooklyn Supreme Court Building, I'll see you there. I'll even sign your books.

Friday, June 27, 2008

The Mythos That Never Were

As I have mentioned before, Mythos: Captain America will be the last of the Mythos series. However, we had originally planned for 2 additional books featuring Iron Man and Daredevil, both of which I was looking forward to. I just ended a sentence with a preposition. It's my blog. Featured in this post are 2 digital sketches I had created to help visualize the look of the series before I had painted a single page.

If you're familiar with the Mythos covers, you can see that the basic design is there, although in rough form. I wasn't satisfied with the logo that they had shown me at the outset, so I came up with something on my own, which was followed pretty closely in the end.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Wacky Reference Wednesdays, No. 11

It doesn't get much wackier than this. In order to get the right angle and gesture for the cover of The Iliad #3, I had to wield the fearsome broomstick. This was taken in the my "photo studio," otherwise known as the back room where we keep our toilet paper. There is also some lewd art on the wall. Also featured prominently is what my girlfriend calls the "chinese bun," a deformed mass of muscle sometimes called my bicep.

I'll be in sunny Florida for the whole week, relaxing with my girlfriend and 'rents, all of whom joined me at the Heroes Con this past weekend. Thanks to everyone who stopped by the table. I had a wonderful time and hope to return next year. Once I'm back to Brooklyn, I'll share some pics from the show, including some new art. Have fun and remember to wear sunscreen.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Conan Proof

A little over a year ago, I had the privilege of meeting Conan O'Brien after seeing his show (link). As a thank you for being a guest in our comic, Mythos: Spider-Man, I gave him the page in which he appeared. Thanks to his publicist, Marc, I now have a picture of where the painting hangs in his office... right behind a hanging puppet of the host.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Happy Birthday, Blog!

It was one year ago today that I began documenting the intimate details of my incredibly detailed life. Of course, most of you didn't start reading that day, but that's okay, my Mom was there to support me.

I'm probably at the Heroes Con as this is being posted. You may not be at said convention, but that's okay, my Mom (and Dad) will be there to support me.

Thanks to everyone for reading. Enjoy the weekend. I'll be in Florida for the coming week (and still posting)!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Wacky Reference Wednesdays, No. 10

This is how I felt Tuesday morning, so I thought it would make for a relevant post. It's from way back in 2006 when I was working on Mythos: Ghost Rider. I'm using the ol' "take a photo in the mirror" trick.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Big Apple Pin-Ups

Another 6 pin-ups, as promised, mostly from the Big Apple Con (Dr. Strange and Aquaman were from the New York Comic Con). The Green Goblin was probably my favorite, since it's the craziest and most colorful.

I'm all caught up with my life now. I sent out my estimated taxes yesterday, renewed my site hosting and domain (almost 3 weeks late), ate some shark fin soup in Eastchester, and will begin working again today: the cover for The Twelve #8. Finally, I get to paint a lady.

Also, I just completed a video trailer for Mythos: Captain America. Hopefully, I can post it before the end of the week, once the guys have formatted it. It's pretty simple, but I'm happy with it. I made it on iMovie, which came with my iMac and was easy to learn. I could have used a few more editing capabilities, but just the fact that I was able to use it instantly says a lot about the interface and program design.

Friday, June 13, 2008

NYCC '08 Pin-Ups

I'm just about caught up with my life since the end of Mythos. It's been a little over a week and I've managed to see my girlfriend, do laundry, go to the gym (I lost about 6 pounds during the last 3 months), get some sun (I'm really pale), drink, go out to eat, meet up with friends, drink, pay bills, answer some of my e-mail, drink. And it was all just in time for a jury summons.

Among other things, I've cleaned up some pin-ups from the New York Comic Con back in April. I've been limiting the con sketches to just heads and busts, which has made the overall con experience much easier on me, especially when I have to go home that night and continue painting. It also allows me to give each commission the attention it deserves because I can concentrate on a nice finish, rather than agonizing over each composition.

I'll have another half dozen pin-ups on Monday. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Wacky Reference Wednesdays, No. 9

Nothing too "wacky" about today's reference — just a street scene from Mythos: Spider-Man that required some authentic details. The shot also required a lot of planning that will (hopefully) be taken for granted by the viewer. This is the first panel of a new scene, so I needed to establish a number of things. Our narrator, Peter Parker, is about to be bitten by a radioactive spider. He begins the scene inside the science fair, but ends up outside and up a wall.

At the very least, I needed to include a busy street with traffic, a side street, a fire escape, science fair banners, and a building facade. Luckily, I already had reference for most of this, and the rest was found through a Google image search.

This was taken from Midtown Comics in, well, midtown. I was just there to buy comics, but thought I could eventually use a shot like this. I try to bring my camera with me whenever I head into the city... and if I ever find myself up above street level, I almost always take a picture. You never know.

And this is the Hershey store in Times Square. I liked the windows and lower facade, but the interior was a scary, scary place.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Another Twelve

My life is slowly getting back to normal now so I shall resume posting 3 times a week. We'll start off with the latest cover for the pulpy series The Twelve. This is probably my favorite of the series thus far. I suppose it looks the most "authentic" to me. I feel like all superheroes used to look like this.

This was also the first time I've ever used the tube of violet paint in my Acryla Gouache set.

Here is the underlying drawing. This was done during my week-long charcoal conversion from a couple months back. While liberating in many ways, it was just a tad too loose for what I need, especially for interior sequential work.

And, as usual, I begin with a quick sketch of some sort. In this case, I skipped the layout sketch and went straight to the color study, so the entire process was done in Photoshop.

Thank you to everyone who came to see me at the Big Apple Con. You guys kept me busy all weekend (even when the crowd seemed pretty thin). Also, I'll be seeing The Incredible Hulk today, so I'll be back on Wednesday with all kinds of unfounded criticism.

Friday, June 6, 2008

No, Really, I'm Finished

It is with great pleasure (and relief) that I announce the end of Mythos! Captain America, the last book of the series, is already on it's way to be printed and should be in stores by July 2nd, just in time for our nation's birthday.

It has been an intense few months trying to get this finished, but it was well worth the lack of sleep, muscle atrophy, and contact with the outside world. Again, I apologize to any fans who missed me at Philly, but I will still be attending the Big Apple Con tomorrow. As at the New York Comic Con, I will only be doing painted head sketches... I'm just about "painted out" so I need to give my brain a rest (of sorts) this weekend.

Also, just a warning, my prices will be going up.

Thanks for everyone's support throughout the Mythos journey. Hope to see some of you this weekend.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Paolo's Bliping Bala-Bing Done

Hello everybody! I am Paolo's anonymous guest blogger for the day. (Don't worry, he's just catching up on his beauty sleep at an undisclosed location. He'll be back tomorrow).

It doesn't matter who's blogging, the important piece of information that I want to share with y'all is that P.Lo (down and dirty) is done with Mythos: Captain America. Actually, the most important thing is, he is finally done with the whole entire Mythos series (take that Marvel). The amazing Mythos series has finally come to an end after a long, sleepless, yet exciting 3 and a half years.

Paolo would like to thank everyone for their wonderful support and like to apologize to those whom he let down at the Philly Comic Con. But rest assured, he will be at the Big Apple Con this weekend. He can't wait to see everyone! Please stop by. I, the anonymous guest blogger, will probably be there too.