I like brains... but I'll get to that in a minute.
To celebrate one of the best holidays of the year, if not THE best, here's a little zombified Batman action for you good peoples.
This is piece contains a variety of mediums including brush & sumi ink, markers & pens, white acrylic paint and a dash of whiteout pen here and there. It was also done without the use of pencil. No sketchin' allowed.
What comes to mind the most about this piece was my own brains' state of mind. It was done at a moment when I was extremely tired and quite "zoned out" (setup at a convention, FAN CON, in fact). You know that mental state? When you put on two different colored socks, forget to eat lunch or order food you're allergic too.
Something about this drawing dragged my brain out of my own zombie-like state similar to, well, dragging a zombie out of a grave.
Despite my hands being stained with paint and ink it reminded me how much drawing is purely a mental game and that kinda of game can sharpen your thoughts (even when tired) in a way nothing else I know can. So not only was it fun, but it worked better than a 5-hour energy. Now the trick is to have this affect every time I pick up a paint brush. Wonder if works for carving pumpkins too? Guess we'll see...
Happy Halloween everyone!
It's been a little while since my last installment of the blog so in bringing forth news I knew I needed it to be some good stuff. And thus we have POW!
Today marks the opening of "An Exhibition of Local Comic Book Art"
from my original home turf of Salisbury, MD. The show is within the lovely Mosley Gallery
on the campus of University of Maryland, Eastern Shore.
It contains the work of many a fine artist; including...
Jason McKee, Michael Carmean, Ryan Thompson
and the gentlemen & ladies of PLB Comics
& Coldstream Studios
- as well as the work of my own self; including pieces from my comic with writer Sam Costello
, LAST CARESS
, and a special giclée print inspired by my comic ROGERS' WALKERS
for the New York Times Bestselling graphic novel series, FUBAR
It goes without saying that I'm very proud to be a part of this gathering of über skill image-makers. Please join us too for a special panel discussion TODAY from 3-4pm. We'll be discussing our creative process, what we love about the medium of comics, what's running through our unusual brains when working on comics, the art of self-publishing and any & all question ye may have. And afterwards will be the official reception from 4-6pm.The show will be up beginning today, October 11th, running through November 8th. To find out more visit www.MosleyGallery.com
. See you there!- Doug
Let the signing begin! This weekend, as I'm sure you're all aware of, is FREE COMIC BOOK DAY. The day four and a half million books are given away for free all over the country in support of the magnificent story-telling medium know as the "comic". And 37,000 of those will be a free FUBAR sample comic (see to the left) containing stories from the just released FUBAR: American History Z.It is also the day that the ground forces of FUBAR will be infiltrating a comic shop near you for a massive signing by the contributing creators: 12 states, 2 provinces, 3 countries, 26 shops, 37,000 books, and all on 1 DAY. And that day officially begins at MIDNIGHT tonight.
At midnight I'll be doing a signing for FUBAR: AHZ at Capitol Comics in Annapolis, MD. My comic ROGERS' WALKERS, written the Shawn "The Man" Williams and illustrated by moi lies between it's covers. And I'm proud to have it there. I'll be signing the comic, displaying the original artwork, and doing sketches of all kinds. I'll also be promoting some exciting news regarding ROGERS' WALKERS that I can't yet tell you about. But it's coming!
Then, bright & early (and likely weary-eyed) I'll also be in Baltimore, MD at Collector's Corner for their all-day FCBD signing extravaganza beginning at 9am. My good pals of PLB Comics will be in attendance as well (and at Capitol Comics
too!) as well as the talented Cary Nord (CONAN), Marc Hempel (SANDMAN), Brandon Seifert (WITCH DOCTOR, Michael S. Bracco (BIRTH & NOVO) and many, many more.
If you'd like to know more on FCBD & FUBAR here's an interview Jeff McComsey, Fubar's Commander-in-Cheif just did with RUE MORGUE magazine. Check it out HERE.
Also, here's a list of comics put together by IGN.com to grab up tomorrow (for FREE). Check it out HERE. And of course that list includes FUBAR. AND, if you're more of an NPR fan here's a link to an article they put together of their favorite FCBD comics (also, including FUBAR, wouldn't ya know). You can read that right HERE.
Alright, that's enough links for the day. See you at Capitol Comics at midnight & Collector's Corner tomorrow!
Today is the BIG day: FUBAR: American History Z hit stands everywhere! If you're not familiar with the massive tome of zombie goodness that is FUBAR then now is you're time.
FUBAR is the New York Times Bestselling Graphic Novel Series. It's a collection of historical wars, battles and significant moments in human history... that places them in a hoard of hungry zombies.
American History Z is the 3rd volume of FUBAR and, as you can guess, this time it's taking on the history of America - beginning with the discovery of the New World, moving up through the Revolutionary War, the Civil War, the underground railroad, Vietnam and even Woodstock. Plus much, much more.
Why am I stoked about AMZ? Within it's pages is the story ROGERS' WALKERS, written by the master wordsmith himself, Mr. Shawn Williams and illustrated (and lettered even) by yours-truly. ROGERS' WALKERS is inspired by the true story of Major Robert Rogers, his band of Rangers and the controversial St. Frances Raid of 1759. Our story contains action, drama and perhaps even a little cannibalism (every story needs some of that, right?). Here's a snippet of the good times that await Rogers and his Rangers.
So run out to your local comic shop or book store and grab yourself a copy. It's a hefty one - over over 400 pages (436 to be exact), so you may want to bring some help carrying it to the car.
In the next couples days I'll be posting more exciting news on AMZ, Rogers' Walkers and it's artwork, as well as upcoming signings. Keep your eyes peeled troops!
Talk with you soon,
Looks like I made page two of The Daily Times today. This pic was taken this past Saturday during the 1st Annual ART WAR - a competition during the Salisbury Festival within the brand new downtown Salisbury University gallery.This is a work-in-progress shot of my painting of the Downtown Plaza, barely one block away from gallery space itself. I'll be doing a series of drawings of the plaza in conjunction with Main Roots Coffeehouse (which I'll keep you posted on), so I thought "why not do a painting as well?"Not only was ART WAR a blast - being immersed in a timed project with a room full of extremely talented artists - but it also kicked off the beginning of yet another meaningful step forward in the revitalization of historic downtown.
Thanks to SU Art Gallery Director, Elizabeth Kauffman and Gallery Manager, Marisa Sage for having me be a part of this very cool event. And a big congrats to Cori Beardsley for taking home the Art War gold. Kudos to her and her massive 300 pound Joker-esque sculpture (if you have the chance to see it you will not regret it). Look forward to Art Warring next year!If you'd like to read the full article just click HERE, or you can read it online HERE. If you'd like to know more about the gallery visit www.salisbury.edu, or visit in-person at 118 North Division Street, Salisbury, MD 21804.
Talk with you soon!
Just wanted to let you all know I'll be strutting the isles at the 2013 MoCCA Fest in NY this weekend!
The show is an annual comics & cartoon art festival put together by the good people of the Society of Illustrators and the Museum of Comic & Cartoon Art. Really looking forward to it! Here's some info from their website...
The MoCCA Arts Festival brings together an extremely diverse group of creators, from individuals just beginning to show and sell their work, to living legends of the industry. You will find the breadth of comic and cartoon art expression, from off-the-wall humor to intensely personal works in all the medium's different forms, here at the festival.Some great folks to check out would the ever talented Greg Ruth at the ASFA table, the beautiful illustration of Mr. Mike Mano, and the good peoples of AdHouse books - amongst many, many others. For more info on exhibitors, special guests, Awards of Excellence and 1st Annual Juried Show just visit www.moccafest.org. See ya there!
Greetings Ladies & Gents,Well it's that time of the year again. It's time for the 2013 EASTERN SHORE FAN CON!Saturday, March 9th I and many of my fine creative colleagues will be holding down our forts during the malay of awesomesause that is FAN CON. Myself, I'll have an array of artistic goodness to check out and purchase for you're very own (more deets on this in the next couple days!) and will also be illustrating one-of-kind commissions upon your kind requests.Outside of this there will be a frenzy of folks on hand including the good guys of PLB Comics, Trunk Novel Publishing, the wonderfully talented artist Nikkol Jelenic, the UMES Sequential Arts Program and mucho, mucho more. On top of this the one & only Greg LaRocque will be in attendance as well - that's a hand you don't want to miss shaking (btw, I've got a great childhood story involving Mr. LaRocque I'll share with you all soon. Good stuff).And finally a big salute to the men-with-the-plan Mr. James Dufendach and the PLB crew for putting this whole thing together. It's nothing if not a labor of love for these guys and it wouldn't be here without their hard work and dedication. So if you see them strutting around the show give'em a high-five, a hearty handshake or a slap on the ass. They'll appreciate either or all.If you dig comics, anime, gaming or an amalgam of all of these then you'll dig FAN CON. For more info check out the official website at www.EasternShoreFanCon.com or for the latest updates and news "Like" their facebook page HERE.Thanks all, see you ladies & gents there!- Doug
Whenever I do a show of any kind I ultimately decide at some point to do a little sketching between commission requests, sales and conversations. Which many times, as it will undoubtedly get busy again, leads to works-in-progress. Spidey over here being one of those. I thought it might be cool to post a progress pic of this piece in action and do a little chatting about it.
While working on this one in particular one of the things I noticed from people was their surprise in the various sketch lines. Those previous decisions I moved away from, yet are still visible on the page (yeah, they're pretty much all over the place). This has to do with the process where I was trying the drawing method I approached the comic, Last Caress, with - using only pen, ink and whiteout pen or white acrylic paint. Pencils, graphite and erasers were off limits and heavily against the law.
This does a couple things. At first it creates hesitation since your next move isn't so easily discarded. In fact it's kind of staring you in the face as you think about the next one. Whiteout pens are great but as you can see they don't always eliminate every trace (which I rather dig honestly). However, once you're over this hump and can move freely without so much consideration to what remnants are being left behind it creates a great sense of liberation.
The most interesting thing to see for me as an artist was that of the perspective of some on-lookers to this process where they were able to see all those previous decisions. Though they enjoyed watching & checking out the drawing as I made it they were surprised to see all the visible sketching that went into it, which isn't always the case of course. Some are quicker than others. From their perspective though these sketches (or as I refer to them, discarded decisions) they placed in the category of "mistake". Understandable of course at first glance but an interesting observation nonetheless. Which got me thinking. The funny thing, and perhaps surprising to some, is that these are actually the furthest things from, what appears on the surface to be, mistakes. In reality all of these decisions lead up to an ultimate outcome. In the same way you may try on a number of different pairs of shoes, gaging the comfort and appearance, before ultimately settling on the pair you buy. Those earlier pairs aren't mistakes. You're just trying them on for size. Same kind of thing.
This is a big sticking point young up-and-coming artists have that can likely hold them back. Confusing trying on a pair of less-than-appealing "shoes" with making a mistake. In our case, sketching something they may not be entirely happy with, which then leads to the process of beating oneself up, putting the pen down and walking away. I've seen and heard about this a lot. This isn't a mistake however, it's merely the process of learning. Remember, each choice and each action teaches you what the next should be. So be stubborn, be persistant. Dig your heels in and make your stand. Embrace those decisions, acknowledge and commit to making new ones and focus on those. This is your most powerful tool. Knowing this also happens to make the process more fun. And who doesn't want more fun, right?
Thanks, hope this is helpful and I'll talk with you soon.
Good Monday to you all,
This past weekend was the Grand Opening Celebration of Salisbury's newest comic shop, PHOENIX RISING. It was a fantastic event and I'm proud to have been a part of it. A lot of cool people showed up and I was able to chill with the areas best local artists & creators, along with having the pleasure of meeting a few new ones. An excellent experience all around.
While there I began working on the piece we have here. Being setup in the comic shop, I was inspired to get back to those comics-hero roots so I decided to try my hand at Joe Simon & Jack Kirby's legendary Captain America.
Working on this I had some cool conversations with folks too, including Mr. Adam Timmons (writer of Charm City Chronicles), who noted a few interesting characteristics about the drawing, and some that were floating just below my consciousness.
One being that I chose a less-than gradiose depiction. A lot of images of Capt, especially since he's a classic super-hero (and birthed from the finger tips of Mr. Kirby), are monumental. Very dramatic and with a consistent sense of action. A staple even when standing still. So I chose to try something of the opposite and take a rather subdued, quiet shot of the star-spangled Avenger by showing him mid-walk (not run). Almost as if leaving something behind, more consumed with thoughts than his surroundings. Adam noted too the lack visibility of two of his most iconic symbols, the "A" on his mask and star on his less-than-barreled chest, along with the fact that his shield, another iconic symbol, faces away from the viewer. All adding to a subdued atmosphere.
It's inspiring to hear what others see in an image, as well as to have them discover those small, yet large, details that the artist, in this case me, had passed over. Or maybe unconsciously included. I'm still on the fence with the background so if anyone wants to toss out their own thoughts feel free to do so. I'm all ears.
Thanks for the comments Adam. Hope you all enjoy and I'll talk with you soon!
First off, a happy Friday to you all. Secondly this Saturday (tomorrow) morning is the very merry GRAND opening celebration of Salisbury's newest comic shop, PHOENIX RISING. I think I can speak for all of the sequential art fans of the area in saying "welcome". It's always nice to see another shop opening up, whether locally or elsewhere.
In welcoming this new addition many, if not all, of the areas comics artists & companies will be supporting PHOENIX RISING by being on-location in the store for the opening. The fine fellows of PLB Comics and Trunk Novel Publsihing, along with Mr. Bradley Hudson and Jason McKee, as well as yours truly, will be setup doing sketches, selling comics, arm-wrestling and possibly breathing fire. We'll see. For sure though PLB's bringing out the big guns with their latest comic, The Fall: Vengence & Justice #3. And by latest I mean VERY latest. It's literally arriving from their printer THAT DAY. So don't miss it's big premiere. Also, Adam Timmons and Kevin Gravenor will be unveiling their debut comic, Charm City Chronicles. Along with these things of mighty coolness PHOENIX RISING will have food & beverages at noon. So feel free to partake.
All creators will be setup for the opening at 10am tomorrow morning. If you have any questions you can contact PHOENIX RISING on their facebook page right HERE, or call them at 443-944-8207. Their address is...
PHOENIX RISING Games & Comics
327B Civic Avenue
Salisbury, MD 21804
A big thanks to Brooks Dorsey and Chris Miller, PR's founders, for having us all out. Can't wait. Thanks everyone, see you all out there!