Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Superheroes in Salt Lake City

What better way to end the year could there be? Here is an article from The New York Times telling of some chaps who dress up in costumes and patrol their city.

Friday, December 09, 2011

The Wheel of Amos Fortune

This spinner made my day when I saw it and I hope you're liking it also. All hats off to Kerry Callen for the time and effort it took to animate this gif. If you go visit his blog, you get to see three other equally excellent chestnuts: one of Batman and one of Spider-Man and one of Iron Man.

I can't take my eyes off that Wheel. It's so much fun and just perfectly executed. Thank you, Kerry! And thanks also to Mark Evanier for sharing the link in his blog or I would never have known about this great phenomenon.

It got me thinking about which other comic book covers might lend themselves to a similar animating. I was surprised at what a very small number of covers I found that I felt this would work well for. I did find three, and I'll tell you how I would animate them. The three below do not have motion like the JLA above (yet), but you can (for now) use your imagination.

This specimen from Superman #14 (1942) is one of my favorite Superman covers of all time. Other people like it also, considering the fact that a statue or two was made from that design. Do you realize that the cover was drawn by Fred Ray who was also the artist of Tomahawk for the first fifteen or twenty years of that venerable strip? By the way, I found out just recently that the original artwork to this cover was for many years in the possession of great artist Jerry Robinson (and you can watch a video of Mr. Robinson talking about the artwork over here ).

Anyway, I would animate that cover by having the eagle slowly flap his wings and by having Superman turn his head to look straight out at us and then back at the eagle.

I am also very fond of the cover to The Big All-American Comic Book #1 (1944). I would animate it by having the boy pan his head from left to right looking at all the characters, with the dog wagging his tail all the while. Oh, and two more things. Each time the boy's head carriage-returns to the left side of its panning, I would have the letters of his "WOW!" exclamation do a full 360-degree rotation AND I would have Wildcat wink.

The Neal Adams cover to Superman #233 (1971) is another great one. I would animate it by showing Superman breaking the chains.

If you feel inspired to try your own hand at animating a cover, please send me your masterpiece and I will be delighted to share it with the world.

Friday, December 02, 2011

I Like Mudman

I've been enjoying the artwork of Paul Grist for years now. His Jack Staff series began way back in 2003 and his stripped-down style has always shouted "FUN!" to me.

He has now started up a new title that I feel is his best work yet. Mudman #1 hit the stands last month and it could easily have escaped your notice. But it's not too late to grab the comic for yourself! If you were a fan of the earliest issues of Spider-Man (and who wasn't?) I strongly encourage you to seek this one out because Mudman has that same cool vibe.

(I found it a bit of a funny coincidence that, in the issue of DC's My Greatest Adventure miniseries that came out the same week as Mudman #1, it was Batman himself who referred disparagingly to Aaron Lopresti's Garbage Man character as a "mud man.")

Here's a look at Mudman in action, and you can see clearly that Paul G. is giving his artwork plenty of room to breathe.