Chris Arrant, Author at Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources
Some comic book heroes enjoyed their heydays well before toymakers began churning out action figures, and therefore never found a place on shelves beside the likes of Superman, Batman and Captain America. However, Bill Murphy hopes to change that with his Amazing Heroes Kickstarter campaign.
With a goal of $30,000, Murphy plans to produce a line of action figures based on the Black Terror, the original Daredevil, Stardust and other Golden Age heroes that have lapsed into the public domain. He says he even has the permission of the rights holders of Captain Action, a toy introduced in the mid-’60s, to produce a figure based on that character.
With the 25th anniversary of 1989′s Batman, there’s been a resurgence of interest in the Tim Burton movie. As part of that, James at 1989Batman.com has pulled together some excellent threads examining DC Comics’ 1990 redesign of Robin, a project undertaken at the behest of filmmakers.
Out went the elfish garb of the original as DC searched for something more modern — befitting the time, and also primed to be translated into a future Batman film. To accomplish that task, DC turned to several of its top artists at the time, including Neal Adams, Norm Breyfogle, Stephen De Stefano, George Perez and Jim Aparo. DC didn’t tell the artists what it was for; simply, they were asked to redesign the Boy Wonder.
Dan Brereton was one of the first creators to bring painted art from the covers of comics to their interiors, and now he wants to put some of that art onto bookshelves and coffee tables. He’s putting the finishing touches on his fourth hardcover art collection, titled Enchantress, and is offering a limited edition to 250 of his most ardent fans.
Brereton and art collector Steve Morger have taken to Kickstarter looking to raise $3,000 to publish and, in effect, sell these limited edition versions of Enchantress — and they’ve already met their goal five times over. The limited-edition Enchantress Kickstarter has raised more than $17,000, with 19 days to go, with many of the supporters jumping in on the high-dollar rewards like original paintings. Brereton and Morger plan to announce stretch goals after they return from Comic-Con International
Here’s an example of some of the art from Enchantress:
Tony Moore has unveiled the Comic-Con International-exclusive poster he created with Angry Blue, to be released in conjunction with the Friday premiere of the Assassin’s Creed: Unity-inspired animated short he produced with musician-turned-director Rob Zombie.
The short will be screened Friday at 2 p.m. in Room 6BCF as part of a presentation that includes a demo of the upcoming Ubisoft video game and a Q&A. Just 500 copies of the silkscreened print will be given away at the convention, but Moore and Angry Blue will each have 100 available for sale on their websites.
In the litany of announcements, teasers and other media bombarding comics fans, it’s easy for some pieces of news to slip beneath the radar (even for those covering comics such as myself). So when I caught on Aaron Lopresti’s DeviantArt page that he’s working on a creator-owned series, it was news to me — and apparently most everyone else.
Lopresti has spent the past 20-plus years as an in-demand journeyman artist for the likes of DC Comics and Marvel, but now he’s looking for a change. On his DeviantArt blog, he announced he’s working on a new creator-owned series for Dark Horse titled Power Cubed that will make an informal print debut in his 2014 sketchbook, which will be released next week at Comic-Con International in San Diego.
Jean Giraud (aka Moebius) may have passed away more than two years ago, but his works, and advice, lives on. Thanks to a translation by artist Xurxo g Penalta, English speakers now have the opportunity to read Moebius’ 18 tips for fellow cartoonists, from a 1996 interview with the Mexican magazine La Jornada Semanal.
Penalto’s studio mate Brandon Graham has posted the European master’s “brief manual” for cartoonists on his blog. This last tip is oddly prescient for 2014 despite being offered nearly two decades ago: “Now it is possible to find [a] reader in any part of the planet. We must have this present. To begin with, drawing is a way of personal communication, but this does not imply that the artist must envelop himself in a bubble; it’s communication with the beings near us, with oneself, but also with unknown people. Drawing is a medium to communicate with the great family we have not met, the public, the world.”
In 1991 Steven Spielberg directed a sequel of sorts to Peter Pan and Wendy called Hook, starring Robin Williams, Dustin Hoffman and Julia Roberts. Don’t be upset if you haven’t seen it; it wasn’t that great. But a recent discovery has uncovered a hidden comics connection that makes the film a little more interesting.
Thanks to Billy Ingram, we can now see two paintings Neal Adams created for Hook that were shelved and then thrown away by the production company that commissioned them. Ingram, who worked for the company, saved the two 11-inch by 17-inch paintings in 1989 but forgot about them until earlier this year.
Christian Dior is best known in modern times as a fashion brand, but before that it was a man — and one of France’s foremost cartoonists tells his life story in the graphic novel Girl in Dior. The latest work of Annie Goetzinger, and the first to be published in English, it’s set for release in February by NBM Publishing.
First published last year in France by by Dargaud, Girl in Dior looks at the fashion couturier through the eyes of a young woman named Clara. Beginning with Dior’s first show in 1947 and continuing through his life’s work, the graphic novel mixes straightforward biographical storytelling with an intensive look at the fashion world and the fashions of Dior himself.
Neil Googe has made a career drawing the works of others — from recent fill-in issues on DC Comics’ The Flash and the impressive graphic novel Word of Warcraft: Dark Riders to Wildstorm’s Mr. Majestic and Welcome to Tranquility. But now the Bangkok-based British cartoonist is returning to the world of creator-owned, but not just in comics. For the past few months, he’s been writing on his website about a new transmedia project titled Welcome to the Hood.
Mixing ’90s-era gangster rap with a love for apocalyptic scenarios, Cthulhu and world-building, Googe is looking to create a story and a universe to rival those he’s worked in for the past 15-plus years.
Doctor Doom has been living like a rock star since his creation in the early 1960s, and now artist Rocky Davies has given the Latverian dictator the album cover to match. In a new series of illustrations, Davies has depicted familiar comic villains Doctor Doom, the Joker and Shredder in the the style of 1980s album covers.
In its strictest sense, music and comics couldn’t be further apart — even the most flagrant of comic book sound effects are, in fact, silent. But in the past decade, a number of comics creators with a passion for musical acts have stepped forward and created tributes to their favorite musicians — with notable comics based on or inspired by the likes of Tori Amos, Johnny Cash and Spearmint. Shawn Demumbrum has turned that trend into an informal line of independent anthologies through his company SpazDog Press, peaking now with Nothing Can Stop Me Now: Stories Inspired by Nine Inch Nails.
This upcoming graphic novel anthology, now seeking funds on Kickstarter, has writers and artists creating four- to eight-page stories based on songs from the band’s catalog. Led by a story by Caleb Monroe and Jason Copland based on “Every Day is Exactly the Same,” the collection also features contributions from such creators as Dirk Manning, Caanan White, Salgood Sam, Ryan Cody, Artyom Trakhanov and Joel Gomez. Unlike Demumbrum’s three previous “Inspired by” anthologies, Nothing Can Stop Me Now will be a full-color hardcover.
“Making comics with people who are passionate about the same music I like is something that want to continue to do. I want to continue to challenge myself as a creator and a publisher,” Demumbrum said in a press release. “Going from black and white to color and soft cover to hard cover are just two of the challenges. I wanted to add a pinup gallery so I could attract creators who didn’t have time in their schedule for a full story, but could create a single image for the book. For the previous books, I wanted to make the books PG-13 so that stores could carry them without restriction. The comic book industry has broadened even in the past few years. Comic books like Saga have pushed a mainstream mature to the forefront. I want the Nine Inch Nails book to reflect that type of book.”
Nine Inch Nails and its frontman Trent Reznor have a surprisingly long history of inspiring comics: An early issue of J. Scott Campbell’s Gen13 had a villain created as a homage to Reznor, and the 2004 independent comic Chang Fury featured the singer/songwriter as a fictionalized character. Likewise, Reznor and his bandmates have mentioned they’re comic readers as well, and the band’s 2007 album Year Zero reportedly had an tie-in comic in the works, but was never officially released.
The Kickstarter for Nothing Can Stop Me Now has raised nearly $12,000 toward its $14,000 goal with more than two weeks left.
Jamie McKelvie may be spending his days working on his new creator-owned series The Wicked + The Divine, but that doesn’t mean he’s not still thinking about superheroes from time to time. The artist, who had a successful run at Marvel on Young Avengers, The Defenders and X-Men: Season One, has unveiled an Iron Man redesign he came up with the other night, just for fun.
Nostalgia can be great, but sometimes memories can give us a skewed, rose-tinted view of what really happened. In the recently released graphic novel House Party, Rachael Smith follows three friends who try to recapture the zest of their university days by throwing a house party like the ones they remember.
Gold medalist Doug Larson once said, “Nostalgia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days.” Or as a famous fictional space pirate once said, “I’ve got a bad feeling about this.”
Steve Rolston, known for his work on such titles as Queen & Country, The Escapists and Ghost Projekt, is looking to return to telling his own stories — well, one story in particular, involving a bear, a raccoon and a writer.
They star in a new webcomic Rolston is developing called Trapezius Pepper, which he describes as “noir-ish tale of a washed-up writer pushing his luck in a city of crime.” Its’ the product of years of Rolston’s doodling and thinking while working on other projects. He’s beginning Trapezius Pepper with a series of one-page comics to develop the story and his approach, before jumping into long-form storytelling.
Dave Cockrum passed away in 2006, but his life’s work lives on in the minds of his fans and in the epic contributions to Marvel’s X-Men, DC Comics’ Legion of Super-Heroes, and elsewhere. And now, Aardwolf Publishing is looking to raise funds to release a never-before-seen chapter in Cockrum’s creator-owned series The Futurians, titled aptly enough, The Futurians Return.
Cockrum created The Futurians in the early 1980s following the success of the relaunched Uncanny X-Men, jumping into creator-owned with an inaugural volume published by Marvel before releasing another three issues through an upstart publisher. The series follows a group of superhumans whose powers come via a transmission from the future intended to help prevent a major disaster. Led by a hobo-turned-businessman Vandervecken (or alternately, the Dutchmen), the Futurians are assembled and quickly tasked with confronting the threats they were empowered to stop.