Thursday, February 25, 2010

Jack Kirby Stuntman Comics Cover

Original art for the cover of Harvey's Stuntman Comics, by Jack Kirby and Joe Simon in 1945.
Click to Supersize.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Jack Kirby Amazing Fantasy #15 Reproduction

In 1993 Jack Kirby drew a reproduction of Amazing Fantasy #15, the famous first appearance of Spider-man.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Monday, February 22, 2010

Dr. Seuss Secret Art

It looks like Dr. Seuss Enterprises has been selling reproductions of Ted Geisel's "Secret Art." It seems like a neat idea, and they're selling out, but I do have to wonder what the artist would think about this idea.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Tintin Movie

If you haven't yet heard, Stephen Spielberg (director) and Peter Jackson are adapting Tintin for the big screen. It'll be CGI and based on The Secret of the Unicorn.

Spielberg cites Herge's Tintin as a source of inspiration and has vowed to stay true to the source material.

The movie is in post-production and due out in 2011.

Speaking of movies, if you hadn't heard, Sam Raimi and Toby Maguire are out of the picture for the next Spidey picture. Marvel is "rebooting" it.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Friday, February 19, 2010

A box full of things.

Having fun exploring a concept in a sketch.

Original Beetle Dooley... er, Bailey

According to ebay, this Beetle Bailey strip by Mort Walker (2-27-1955) was given to fellow cartoonist Jerry Marcus. The message reads "If it werent for you, Jerry, this would probably be called "Beetle Dooley" --Thanks, Mort". When Walker changed his character Spider into Beetle and had him join the Army, Marcus suggested using the last name of Saturday Evening Post editor John Bailey.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Warren Kremer

For some reason, I'm still amazed whenever I see an artist's drawings of something other than what he's identified with. Warren Kremer is best known for drawing Richie Rich, Casper and Stumbo for Harvey Comics. These are originals of work he did outside of that genre.
Click to Supersize

Top to bottom: Love Problems and Advice Illustrated #7; Dick Tracy; Flash Gordon #3; Black Cat Myster #37; Little Max #16 (1950)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Rabbit Character

Fiddling around with a rabbit character.

This Week's Rumours

Wiley Miller, creator of the popular comic strip Non Sequitur, will be retiring next month. Taking over the drawing duties will be famous cartoonist Guy Gilchrist.

A new series of Cat in the Hat books will be published by Marvel Comics, entitled Cat in the Hat: Civil War, written and drawn by Hellboy's Mike Mignola.

To save newspaper space, the classic but declining Prince Valiant will merge with Hagar the Horrible. The new strip, Val & Hagar, will be drawn by Chris Browne.

The Twilight graphic novel hits the stands March 16, written by Jeff Smith and illustrated by Bill Watterson.

Stan Lee has announced he will be producer of a new television series about retired superheroes in a nursing home entitled Geriatric Park.

NBC announced that Jay Leno will be leaving the real world and returning to his life as a cartoon character this fall.

United Media confirmed plans to keep re-runs of Peanuts in the funny pages until 2029, at which time Guy Gilchrist will take over the strip. Gilchrist has pledged to do away with Linus and Lucy's little brother Rerun through a complex 6-month plot line.

Wes Hargis has begun illustrating a series of children's chapter books written by Stephen King. The first in the series, Carrie in First Grade, will be released in September.

Five-year-old writer Malachai Nicolle of the wildly popular online comic Axe Cop has announced he will be retiring at age six, citing conflicts with his kindergarten schedule. Rumor has it that Guy Gilchrist will be taking over writing chores.

Sid Jacobson and Ernie Colon, authors of the New York Times bestselling graphic novelization of The 9/11 Commission Report, have announced the title of their next graphic novel, Universal Health Care Debacle: Call 911.

Wiley Miller, creator of the popular comic strip Non Sequitur, has announced he will be not be retiring next month.

Famous cartoonist Guy Gilchrist has announced he is looking for a new gig.

Children's author Eric Carle has denied charges by his wife that he cut up her favorite dress to make The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

The comic strip Dick Tracy, created by Chester Gould, is celebrating nothing this year.

After several Re-boots (erasing the events of past years) by Marvel Comics, editor-in-chief Joe Quesada has announced "The Ultimate Marvel Reboot," scheduled to occur this summer. The latest Re-boot will eliminate all current artists, writers, titles and characters; and Marvel will begin reprinting its entire lineup in chronological order, beginning with Fantastic Four No. 1. Said Quesada, "We thought this was the ultimate way to re-introduce the Marvel superheroes to a new, younger audience."

Frank Cho will be guest artist next week for Russell Myer's Broom Hilda.

Stacy Curtis has been named editorial cartoonist for Weekly Reader.

Author Nevin Martell has written a follow-up book to Looking for Calvin & Hobbes, in which he reveals that cartoonist Bill Watterson does not actually exist. Sources say Martell provides proof that Calvin and Hobbes was written and drawn by Guy Gilchrist.

The Smithsonian Institute announced plans to unearth the remains of Charles Schulz' childhood pet Spike, upon which Snoopy was based. Geneticists plan to extract DNA from hair samples, clone Spike, and then have him euthanized and stuffed, to be exhibited permanently in the museum.

The Doozies cartoonist Tom Gammill will be replacing Bob Mankoff as cartoon editor of The New Yorker.

Famous cartoonist Guy Gilchrist used the word "poop" in his new comic strip, Today's Dogg.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Jack Kirby Pencils

Seeing an artist's pencils is like eating birthday cake for me.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Annie's Li'l Orphans - Stan Drake & Bill Yates

A few weeks ago I posted original art from Stan Drake and Bill Yates' Annie's Li'l Orphans, a comic strip they promoted for syndication. I discovered several more, bringing the count to twenty-four. That may be the complete submission. I added them all to the original post, Shades of Liberty Meadows.

Book Sketches

Wes is much better at drawing foxes and various animals than I am, but here's my attempt. This is the pencil for a scene from the fable "The Fox and The Wolf."

This one is for "The Rabbit's Apprentice."
This is Mrs. Fox:

Crogan Adventures

Cartoonist Chris Schweizer has a very cool ensemble drawing of his characters for the ever-growing Crogan Adventures book series.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Charles Schulz 1922-2000

Sparky Schulz died ten years ago, just a month after I began my short comic strip career. Sometimes it seems like the whole art form died with him.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Monday, February 8, 2010

Geo. Herriman Cartoon

This nifty cartoon was drawn by George Herriman (Krazy Kat) in 1905.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Illustrator Paolo Domeniconi

You'll find some beautiful and gently powerful children's illustrations at Paolo Domeniconi's website.

More Annie's Li'l Orphans

I ran across a few more originals of Stan Drake and Bill Yates' Annie's Li'l Orphans comic strip. I posted the first batch here. These strips must have been their pitch to the comics syndicate. I'll post another batch next week.
Click to Supersize

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Mermaid Sketch

This is one of those sketches that starts trying to turn into something more, but doesn't quite get there.

Roy Crane Buz Sawyer Unfinished Strip

I ran across this original Buz Sawyer strip on ebay. It was unused because creator Roy Crane spilled a big goop of ink on it. I think we've all done something like this at some point, and sometimes it's just not fixable.
Click to supersize

Speaking of not fixable, the photos that were posted on ebay were awful. I did my best to take the misaligned close-up shots and piece them together into one image. It is dated August 25, 1945. It would be interesting to compare it with the "do-over" strip.

Anyways, this allows us a look at a rare, unfinished strip by Roy Crane. Note the hand sketches in the bottom right-hand corner. The strip was given to political cartoonist Jim Ivey, who had it hung in the Cartoon Museum in Orlando. The inscription reads: What a smuck smear! This is one of the few strips I've done over. Best wishes to friend Jim Ivey from Roy Crane.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Dick Tracy

Several months ago there was a rumor abuzz that Dick Locher might be retiring soon from the Dick Tracy strip. I took that opportunity to draw up a few samples of my own and sent them to TMS. I couldn't resist doing my take on how I thought Dick Tracy should be done. That probably killed its chances from the start.
First off, there's not enough room any more to tell a story, so I designed the strip to be full-page width. Yes, I know, only newspapers on the planet Saturn would go for that. But that's just how much room a comic strip needs nowadays, so that's how I drew it.

By today's standards, that would mean a strip would be about eleven inches wide. Sounds crazy good and wacky, but that's about the size Dick Tracy ran when it first started, back when newspapers weren't paper napkin-sized.
Second, I didn't make it look anything like its current incarnation. I was more inspired by the powerful strips that Chester Gould made in the 1930s, when Tracy was at his peak. I got hooked by IDW's Complete Dick Tracy, which reprinted the first couple years of the strip. 
TMS liked the strips. They said they'd keep me in mind; a polite way of saying No, I reckon. I did have fun, though, and got it out of my system.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Today's Sketch

Some kinder monster.

Spider with a bad haircut running across the floor.

Johnny Hart BC Originals

Early BC originals by Johnny Hart. 1959, 1960, 1972, 1981.

Monday, February 1, 2010