Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Black Panther

I haven't seen the movie yet, but I do love the character! Especially as drawn by Kirby, but there are a few Black Panther series that are very good. Priest's series and the multi-part in Marvel Comics Presents for example. 

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Black Lightning-- 3 stages of drawing

Recently finishing the excellent Black Lightning mini-series got me motivated to try my hand at the character's current look. I scanned it in all 3 stages (pencil, ink, color). Tough costume, but looks cool!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Ms. Marvel drawing-ink and color

I noted a while back how much I enjoy reading about Kamala Khan, aka Ms. Marvel, star of Marvel Comic's The Champions as well as her own series. It inspired me to do this drawing, and I recently purchased a new set of markers, so I wanted to try some color. I have some more art I plan to post soon.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Emma Gonzalez

I don't like to get political here, after all I'm here to promote art. But I'm also a teacher (elementary art) and I am aware of difficulties facing America's youth. I am also often dismayed by adults who discount all of the young people in our country as lazy and useless. Therefore, I will now note that I am very proud of the young activists, willing to speak up and persevere despite the criticism they know is coming their way. In particular, I wish to give credit to Emma Gonzalez, who has become the face of the March for our Lives movement.

Emma, your courage leaves me astonished and proud. You didn't ask to be on center stage, but you've handled it with class and done far better things than many of us old people. I call you a hero. My hero.

Emma Gonzalez meets with Congressman Ted Deutch.png

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Justice SOCIETY of America

Someone asks, "Is your favorite Green Lantern Hal Jordan, Guy Gardner, or John Stewart?"

"None of those." I answer.

"You like that new guy, Simon whatzit? Or that Jessica woman?"

"Not even close."

"Oh, you don't mean you like Kyle Rayner?"

"You aren't thinking. My favorite Lantern, the greatest of all Green Lanterns, is the original ring-wearing super hero himself, Alan Scott!"

You see, I have a particular affinity for the Golden-Age heroes of DC Comics past. In fact, I invariably prefer the original versions over the Silver Age reboots. Why? I think there's a grittiness in the old heroes. The Silver Age Green Lantern, Flash, and Hawkman, seem a lot more like typical generic heroes, whereas the Golden Age heroes seem more human. Less powerful and more down to Earth.

And I also love the heroes of the Golden Age that didn't get rebooted. Hourman and Dr. Mid-Nite in particular have excellent powers and great costumes.

But anyway, the point of this is to praise a couple of comic series of old that featured these characters. I used to love reading the JLA/JSA Earth1/Earth2 crossovers to see these old heroes interact with the then-current DC super folk. The crossover issues were by far the best JLA stories, I think, and they showed how these characters could be used well.

In the 80's legendary comics writer Roy Thomas wrote the All-Star Squadron, an Earth-2 comic set during the 1940s. It was a great comic, and showed how you could write "modern" versions of these characters, but set in their historic framework. (This is the perfect companion to Thomas' Invaders at Marvel.) All-Star Squadron got nerfed when DC merged their worlds, but at least it led to one more great series with the Golden Age guys and gals.

In the late 1990's, DC started a Justice Society of America comic, featuring the classic characters Green Lantern, Wildcat, and the Flash, all kept in their prime via various means despite being WWII vets. Launched by writers James Robinson and David Goyer and eventually mostly written by Geoff Johns, with art by many but mostly Stephen Sadowski and Leonard Kirk, this is THE greatest JSA series I have ever read!  It's currently in reprint and I even picked up a couple trades at bargain prices recently (to fill holes in my collection). So there's no reason to not go buy at least some of this series!

Or read any of the JSA-related series. You'll find something great!

Monday, February 26, 2018

Lizard Man returns!

And I guess so does my blog, since I haven't posted anything since November!  But I have been drawing, especially getting ahead on Mutant Elf. But as for Lizard Man--I did this sketch to warm up for his appearance in this year's OH, Comics! Available at SPACE this year.


Oh,Comics! #26 “Money”.
The annual small press anthology featuring 14 strips by Billy McKay, Brent Bowman, Matt Feazell, Jim Mackey, Troy Vevasis, Aleksandar Jovic, Steven Myers, Matt Levin, Kel Crum, Pam Bliss, Sue Olcott, John C. Bruening, J.M.Hunter, Michael A Carroll, Sami Marshall, Ray Tomczak and Bob Corby with cover by Brent Bowman.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Black Lightning: Cold Dead Hands review

Continuing my goal to write about comics I'm currently reading, I herein give you my take on the latest Black Lightning comic from DC.

Image result for black lightning aparo
I know very little about the character Black Lightning. The only comics I remember reading that he was in are the first year or so of Batman and the Outsiders. I'm not sure what the origins of the character are, other than he was created by Tony Isabella, who writes this series. With all the reboots in DC continuity, I'm not sure if Black Lightning even has a current origin story. And speaking of Mr. Isabella, I promise not to be prejudiced because Tony is one of my Facebook friends, an Ohio resident, and a guy I've talked to at many comic cons going back to when I was a teenager. I will admit I might be prejudiced by Tony being a super nice guy!

Image result for black lightning comic  cold dead hands

By the way, Black Lightning has electrical powers--which should be obvious--including being able to hurl lightning, having a force field, and manipulation of electromagnetic forces, which allows him to somewhat fly and levitate heavy things. He's also a teacher when he isn't in costume, which is a big part of his personality and I, of course, approve!

Anyway, the first issues centers on a group of thieves called the "Weathermen" who are using high-tech guns to rob places in Cleveland and cause all kinds of mischief. You read that right, by the way. Unlike most DC heroes who are based in fictional cities, BL isn't patrolling the streets of "Laketown, Midwest" or some such, but is in the real city of Cleveland. Anyway, over the course of the issue or hero, of course, does his job and stops the bad guy (I leave out details to encourage everyone to go buy the book!) but it isn't easy. First, because this is all part of a master plan by a big bad guy. And second, because the local law enforcement is split on whether they want BL to help, or BL to go to jail.

Image result for black lightning comic  cold dead hands

This latter plotline is what gives this story more depth than your typical super-hero affair. As the cover says: "A hero for today's headlines" ,and our hero has to deal with the attitudes of police and public towards BL and his actions. There's real tension and the question of if that tension is caused by anti-vigilantism feelings alone, or is there some racism thrown in there to boot?  And it looks like things will only get more heated as the series continues.

Needless to say, I really enjoyed this book. One of my favorite comics I've read this year and a great example of how to write a good super-hero story!  And the art by Clayton Henry is very nice! Slick and exciting and great storytelling!