Thursday, March 29, 2012

Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones WIP

Taking a break from the pencil drawings, it was suggested to me (by someone that may have had their own agenda) that maybe I'd want to do some paintings of this young lady since Game of Thrones is starting season 2 very soon. I realized that I hadn't done a multi-scan post showing different stages of the process so I am trying to remember to stop every now and then and scan the painting. I'm not going to finish this before I head down to Miami for my yearly Wrestlemania vacation with my friends, so I'm posting this at what seems like the halfway point.

The first scan is just the drawing on a piece of stretched watercolor paper. I did a basic grid to make sure the features all are in the right places and proportions. 

I started laying down washes of watercolor and the paint was doing a lot of unexpected bleeding. I suspect it was because the paper had been stretched on this board months ago and I never got to it. Being left out it may have gotten wet or roughed up, IDK. I was thinking I may be laying some color down and then doing a pencil or ink drawing over it instead of a straight-up painting if I couldn't control the edges of my marks.

The process is simple where I just layer fairly light washes over each other and build it up. With the dark areas, I'll start to get braver with less transparent washes. I'm feeling better about probably just finishing this with paint and not having to go in with something else to tackle the details. 

That's it for now, I'll finish it after I get back from WM on Monday or Tuesday. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Bill Bixby & Lou Ferrigno Hulk blank sketch cover II

Dr. David Banner: physician; scientist. Searching for a way to tap into the hidden strengths that all humans have. Then an accidental overdose of gamma radiation alters his body chemistry. And now when David Banner grows angry or outraged, a startling metamorphosis occurs. The creature is driven by rage and pursued by an investigative reporter. The creature is wanted for a murder he didn't commit. David Banner is believed to be dead, and he must let the world think that he is dead, until he can find a way to control the raging spirit that dwells within him.


Sunday, March 25, 2012

"Days of Future Past" X-Men 141 movie version

After doing the loosely inspired Avengers 221 multi-panel cover I got the idea in the back of my head to do this one. X-Men #141 is one of the iconic covers from the modern age of comics and is one of the more "covered" designs by other artists. This one turned out to be a lot more work, taking an extra long time to do. I think I did a better job overall of getting the likenesses down than with the Avengers sketch cover. The exception being with Ellen Page as Shadowcat/Kitty Pryde. These tiny portraits are difficult where it comes to capturing the likeness of somebody that people are supposed to recognize. Not that I'm making excuses. She looks just slightly more exotic than Ellen Page is so if we want to say it's Wolverine's later sidekick Jubilee instead, I'm fine with that. Also, if anyone wants to guess who the characters are supposed to be in the 2 mostly hidden panels behind Wolverine, post it in the comments section. I will contact the winner privately for their mailing address so that I can ship them an extra special no-prize.

And here's the original cover as drawn by John Byrne in 1981.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Another Ghost Rider cover, still no Cage, but a little Eva Mendes for your viewing pleasure

I mixed movies with this cover drawing Eva Mendes who is in the first movie but using a reference of Ghost Rider from the second movie. I just prefer the black charred look they designed for his skull better in the second flick. Technically, the reference I used of Eva Mendes isn't from the first movie anyway. Thinking about it now, the hair sort of hides most of her features.


Thursday, March 22, 2012

Punisher triple-threat, Lundgren, Jane, and Stevenson

I had someone email me about a potential commission for a Punisher sketch cover inspired by the previous Avengers 9-panel cover I did a few posts back. It was going to have panels spotlighting the 3 movie incarnations and their corresponding villains. Nothing's come of it yet past an initial email exchange. He may still hire me for the job, but in the meantime I did this one.

Finding any kind of high-resolution reference shots of Dolph Lundgren from this 1989 movie that I was inspired to use was difficult but not impossible. The other two took me a lot less research to dig up some decent images to work from.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Captain America vs the combined might of Red Skull and the "man hands"

Before I get into my one main criticism of this piece (and the inspiration for the title of this blog post), let me say that I'm very happy with the finished outcome. I feel I really tried to put some extra work into the detail of this one especially in the smallest figure.

That said, I was excited to try and use this pose of Hayley Atwell/Peggy Carter making eye contact with, and pointing her gun at the viewer. I knew the perspective could be an issue so I made extra sure that I got the size relationships exactly the same as in the photo. I know I did it right, and that this is how it is supposed to look, but her hand just looks a little large. Maybe its just in my mind after staring at it from a distance of 6 inches for 12 straight hours, but it instantly made me think of that Seinfeld episode where Jerry is dating a girl with enormous man-sized hands. Maybe I'm just crazy and seeing things that aren't there.


And speaking of man hands, HERE'S THE CLIP I WAS THINKING OF

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Jennifer Garner's Elektra on a Daredevil blank variant cover

Its just a straightforward portrait because I just wasn't feeling having to draw Ben Affleck yesterday for whatever reason. I really wanted to scale back and do something a little simpler yet still do another cover and initially I was going to do it as a much quicker sketch. I just found myself getting way too detailed though and went with it. Anyways, it came out well.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Avengers 221 homage sketch cover

After taping off all of the boxes, it only took a few minutes before "what the hell am I doing?" was the predominant thought echoing around in my head. I had this strange inspiration to do a version of the classic (at least to me) cover of issue 221. Unfortunately, doing nine tiny portraits didn't become a bad idea until after the planning stage. Here's the image, I'll talk about the individual squares below it.


Basically, the idea of the original cover to issue 221 was to tease that there was going to be a new lineup of Avengers and it pictured a wide range of Marvel heroes. While I agree that Agent Coulston isn't a "super-hero", I was short one head for a nine square grid so he'll do fine. 

Drawing tiny portraits is tough for me because even if I'm off by 1/16 of an inch when drawing the features, it will usually throw the likeness off. I wasn't going to enter crazy anal pucker time tracing reduced copies or drawing grids, so the attitude became do your best but do each box as quick as you can without compromising too much on the finished product. As a whole, I think its fine, but some portraits are more successful than others. Oftentimes you don't realize something's wrong until too much work has been done where erasing a whole area would translate into being a total messy nightmare. 

  1. Black Widow: I think the features look like her in relation to each other (eyes, nose, mouth) but I think I might have made the head a little too slender. She has a round face. At least rounder than my drawing ended up. The features may also be just a tad too big for the head height-wise
  2. Captain America: With the helmet on there's less pressure to make it look like someone specific, just make sure the proportions are correct. 
  3. Thor: there's something off on this one where it doesn't specifically resemble Chris Hemsworth. Somewhere in the eyes and maybe also the nose. It all looks right to me, just not all that much like him.
  4. Nick Fury: this isn't a complete home-run either, but its very very close.
  5. Loki: the eye placement is  low and maybe a bit too wide-set.
  6. Iron Man: I think I got this one right, 10 out of 10 dentists who know who RDjr is will recognize this drawing as being of him. The temptation  to draw his helmet instead of his actual face was like low-hanging fruit, but I'm glad I chose the tougher road since the end result was good. 
  7. Hulk: The other one where likeness wasn't really an issue. Like the Captain America portrait, get the proportions looking right and avoid Picassoface.
  8. Hawkeye: I think I got this one correct too. Maybe a little chubby though? 
  9. Agent Coulston: Almost as close as the Hawkeye and Iron Man portraits in regards to the likeness. If anything, the right side of his face (our right, his left) might need to be thinned down just an itsy-bitsy  teeny-tiny bit.
My very good friend is kind enough to post some auctions for me every now and then, so bookmark and visit THIS LINK every now and then to see what is available for sale at any given time. He also sells sports autographs there if you're interested.

Also remember that I am available for commissions. EMAIL ME with your ideas and questions for a quote. 

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Oh, and here's the original cover to issue 221: 

And here's my cover with some photoshopping:

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

X-Man vs. X-Man, Hugh Jackman vs. James Marsden

This book was the start of a major storyline where they had a split within the X-Men, hence the word "schism". An easy way to relay this idea is a pair of extreme close-up portraits with a line taped off to separate the two. Yes, that is THE MOST Cliché Wolverine cover pose of all-time, but it still looks bad-ass. I am wondering what easy solution there is to fixing the problem of the reflective properties from the heavy graphite messing with my scans???

Monday, March 12, 2012

X-Men (First Class) with Jones, Fassbender & McAvoy

 I obviously wanted to feature the two biggest characters from the movie, but maybe January Jones should have been one of the larger figures for a little more sizzle? This one went smoothly in regards to the layout and drawing/shading the figures with no major speedbumps encountered or great revelations. This smaller actual-size format makes it difficult to draw anything at the size I drew her and still incorporate a lot of detail.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Hulk variant sketch cover old-school Ferrigno style

I was contacted by a certain jade-colored individual about being overlooked for consideration for one of these covers so I'll now turn this post over to our guest blogger. Ladies and gentleman, I now present the Hulk...

Hulk wants to be left alone, but Hulk love internet.
Hulk saw stupid Avengers pictures, Hulk want one.
Hulk want old-school picture.
Hulk hate fake cartoons want real-deal Hulk.
Hulk hate puny Banner, Hulk still like cover.
Hulk's fingers too big for keyboard.
Hulk mad.
Hulk smash...

...and cue TV Hulk's sad piano music.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

The double Chris cover, Hemsworth and Evans a.k.a. Thor and Captain America

I had downloaded some images from the new Avengers trailers that have made it online as screencaps. While there isn't an embarassment of riches to choose from, I have enough different decent shots to create several covers. I didn't really have a solid idea for this cover other than that I was going to use 2 major characters, preferably in costume. I drew the foreground figure in and then literally went through my remaining images to see which one would fit in the strange space that was left. The little to no planning worked OK on this one.


Monday, March 5, 2012

(Nick Cage free) Ghost Rider sketch cover

A couple of notes about this one. I went into this drawing wanting to try a few new things out. I taped off and confined the image to a specific area because I hated drawing to the edges on previous books where the pencil continually skipped off the cover. After getting halfway through and looking at the piece, I wasn't sure if this image was going to be clear as to what was going on in certain areas if left to just a gray-scale drawing.

Between flames and smoke obscuring and overlapping the skull and it being in black and white, some areas were hard to tell if it was supposed to be skull, flames, or smoke. Maybe if I had zoomed out a little so the entire flaming head was shown and you could see the outline of the flames and smoke it would have been a little clearer? IDK.

I decided since I had taped off a border anyways that maybe this was the piece to test how watercolors fared on these covers. As it turns out, watercolors are the shits for these books. The covers have some kind of slick coating or treatment that makes the paint bead up and it was a heck of a battle to get a few washes to actually lay where I wanted them. So for future reference, if I want to work in color its going to have to be acrylics, markers, or colored pencils.


I think adding the light washes of color helped the image, but here's a scan of the drawing before paint was laid down to compare.

I don't know, now that I'm looking at both scans, there are things I like about each version.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

New Avengers blank comic sketch cover with Jeremy Renner and Scarlett Johansson

Since I have a few Avengers blanks and the movie is coming in two months, I'll probably be doing a few of these. I did realize afterward that maybe one of the two figures should have been someone with a splashy costume. Instead of my complaining that it consists of the only normal non-powered people in the group, I'll just call it the theme of the image instead.

I drew Scarlett in first and then had to flip it over and completely draw Renner upside down. Being right-handed I would have been dragging my hand across the existing image smudging it up to draw him in right-side-up. This format makes me work a little smaller than I'd like, but there's still some good detailed work in this piece. I'm trying to figure out a solution to the small personal aesthetic issue I'm having with solid blacks as I'm not sure whether filling them in with ink is the right move or not. Anyway, I'm happy with how it came out. Maybe I'll try and either do a painted one or a color pencil cover after this next one I've already planned.


I also have a new Facebook page for my art where I'll be doing updates, announcements, news, etc, so go like it HERE.