illustration Archives | Robot 6 | The Comics Culture Blog

National Cartoonists Society reveals 2013 Reuben nominees

"Daredevil," by Chris Samnee

“Daredevil,” by Chris Samnee

The National Cartoonists Society has announced the divisional nominees for the 68th annual Reuben Awards. They join the finalists for the Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year Award — Wiley Miller (Non Sequitur), Stephan Pastis (Pearls Before Swine), Hilary Price (Rhymes With Orange) and Mark Tatulli (Heart of the City, Lio) — revealed in late February.

The winners will be announced May 24 at the annual NCS Reuben Awards dinner in San Diego.

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PJ McQuade mashes up Quint from ‘Jaws’ and Wolverine

pmcq header

We’ve featured Brooklyn-based illustrator PJ McQuade before because of his frequently comics-friendly work. His latest piece, created for the MF Gallery’s 10th anniversary exhibition, is something of a show-stopper: a mash-up that seems to have struck McQuade purely because of the awesomeness of the sideburns on both Quint in Steven Spielberg’s Jaws and Wolverine. Thinking about it, it was inevitable, really. The original painting is already sold, but you can buy a print of this from McQuade’s Etsy storefront.

My favorite part of the design is the tribute to that much-missed (by some of us nostalgic old farts, anyway) feature of old Marvel comics, the corner box. This lovingly rendered image of the late great Robert Shaw is also available from McQuade’s Etsy shop, if you’d like the disembodied head of a salty old sea dog semi-permanently staring you out from the cover of your laptop/dash of your speedboat/whatever. I know I do. And now I’ve got a mysterious longing for sushi, too.

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Yuko Shimizu’s science fiction illustrations may blow your mind

shim header

Yuko Shimizu recently posted a gallery of amazing science fiction-style art at the portfolio site Behance. A couple were covers for the Vertigo series The Unwritten, but most consisted of book covers and illustrations that were too good not to share. Shimizu posts pictures of the unadorned illustrations beside shots of the images out in the wild, for context. As well as being a great illustrator, she’s an extremely talented designer.

My personal favorite after the jump may well be the Robert Crumb-referencing piece for a Fused TV magazine ad: Keep on space truckin’, indeed.

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Marko Manev’s Superhero Noir

Macedonian illustrator Marko Manev has designed minimalist superhero-themed posters before (check out his Watchmen and Marvel projects on Behance), but his latest series, Superhero Noir, is quite a step up from that work. These are powerful, cinematic, renditions of classic comic book heroes. No wonder these images are showing up all over the internet right now — they’re breathtakingly good, reminding you of how dramatic (or downright majestic) these characters can be when used right.  No wonder that when the Bottleneck Gallery announced they were selling prints of a couple of these designs yesterday, they sold out in minutes.

Check out the examples below, then head over to see a few of these not featured here or in Manev’s Behance gallery over at his Tumblr blog. Continue Reading »

James Jean designs insanely intricate wedding invitations for friends

Former Fables cover artist James Jean seems to have left comics entirely to pursue avenues in illustration and fine art. He recently posted on his blog some intricately detailed wooden lasercut wedding invitations he designed for some friends in Los Angeles: one born in the year of the ox, another in the year of the snake. Continue Reading »

National Cartoonists Society announces Divisional Awards nominees

From "Hellboy: The Fury" #3, by Duncan Fegredo

The National Cartoonists Society has announced the nominees for its 2012 NCS Divisional Awards, which will be presented May 26 during the 66th annual NCS Reuben Awards in Las Vegas.

• Ben Bocquelet and Antoine Perez, production design on The Wonderful World of Gumball (Cartoon Network)
• Penn Ward, character design on Adventure Time (Cartoon Network)
• Erik Wiese, production design on The Mighty B (Nickelodeon)

• Mark McCreery, character design: Rango
• Carlos Saldanha, director: Rio
• Jennifer Yuh-Nelson, director: Kung Fu Panda: The Kaboom of Doom

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Jillian Tamaki mixes sex and politics for the New York Times

Jillian Tamaki (Skim, Indoor Voice) is between projects right now, with one project on the editor’s desk and another not quite under way. So when the New York Times asked her to illustrate a piece on political sex scandals, she was ready, willing, and more than able. Here’s the main illustration, and click through to her blog to see some other sketches. (Mildly NSFW—this is the Times, after all—but she includes one drawing that was apparently too hot for them.)

It’s hard out here for a cartoonist: Michael Kupperman edition

What kind of sociopathic monster would not want to pay the man who made this?

What kind of sociopathic monster would not want to pay the man who made this?

“Considering a career in illustration? The money now is LESS than in 1980s, + you spend half your time chasing it cuz NOONE WANTS TO PAY YOU.”

— The great cartoonist and illustrator Michael Kupperman, whose Tales Designed to Thrizzle is legitimately one of the funniest comics ever made, serves up some real talk on Twitter. Congress failing to extend unemployment benefits is still the most depressing thing I read about the economy this week, but Michael Kupperman — Michael Kupperman! — having a hard time getting paid to draw things is a close second.

Nominees announced for 2009 Reuben Awards

"Strange Adventures," by Paul Pope

"Strange Adventures," by Paul Pope

The National Cartoonists Society has announced the nominees for the 64th annual Reuben Awards, which recognize outstanding achievement in cartooning.

It’s been known since late February that Stephen Pastis (Pearls Before Swine), Dan Piraro (Bizarro) and Richard Thompson (Cul de Sac) would vie for the Reuben Award for Cartoonist of the Year.

However, now we get the full list, which includes nominations in the comic book division for Terry Moore (Echo), Paul Pope (“Strange Adventures,” from Wednesday Comics) and J.H. Williams III (Detective Comics), and in the graphic novel division for David Mazzuchelli (Asterios Polyp), Seth (George Sprott) and David Small (Stitches).

The full list of nominees can be found after the break. Winners will be announced on May 29.

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Straight for the art | The Taxali 300


Canadian artist, illustrator and cartoonist Gary Taxali has an art show coming up at the Narwhal Gallery in Toronto. The good news for those of you who don’t live anywhere near that city is that almost the entire exhibit is up online for you to peruse. (via)

R.I.P. David Levine

American Presidents

American Presidents

The New York Times is reporting that famed illustrator and caricaturist David Levine passed away today at the age of 83 after complications from prostate cancer.

Mr. Levine’s drawings never seemed whimsical, like those of Al Hirschfeld. They didn’t celebrate neurotic self-consciousness, like Jules Feiffer’s. He wasn’t attracted to the macabre, the way Edward Gorey was. His work didn’t possess the arch social consciousness of Edward Sorel’s. Nor was he interested, as Roz Chast is, in the humorous absurdity of quotidian modern life. But in both style and mood, Mr. Levine was as distinct an artist and commentator as any of his well-known contemporaries. His work was not only witty but serious, not only biting but deeply informed, and artful in a painterly sense as well as a literate one. Those qualities led many to suggest that he was the heir of the 19th-century masters of the illustration, Honoré Daumier and Thomas Nast.

The above link comes courtesy of Eric Reynolds at Fantagraphics, which published a collection of Levine’s work, American Presidents, in 2008. Most of Levine’s work, however, was done for the New York Review of Books and they have a nice, searchable gallery of his work online. I would also encourage you to check out this excellent Vanity Fair article on Levine that ran last year.

Straight for the art | Maxim Dalton’s “Guitar Lessons”

from "Guitar Lessons" by Maxim Dalton

I’ve got your Guitar Heroes right here, pal: Argentinian illustrator Maxim Dalton has paid homage to a small army of six-string warriors with a print called “Guitar Lessons.” Featured are guitar gods from Jimi Hendrix to Jack White; personally, I was happy to see Pete Townshend mid-windmill and David Gilmour in his Guinness t-shirt. Click here to see the whole thing and to reserve a copy if you’d like one of your own, and be sure to check out the comments for Dalton’s defenses of who did and didn’t make the cut. Making metal horns while viewing is optional.

(Via David Heatley)

Straight for the art | TV icons by Albert Exergian

True Blood by Albert Exergian

True Blood by Albert Exergian

If you had to pick one iconic image to sum up your favorite television series, what would it be? That’s the challenge graphic designer Albert Exergian set for himself when he created this gorgeous, funny series of posters, each of which boils a popular TV show down to a single essential visual. Check out the gallery of some of our favorites below, check out every single one of them at Exergian’s site, and buy prints of your faves at Blanka.

(Via Shaggy Erwin.)

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Straight for the art | The Autumn Society’s Hellboy art show

"The Lobster's Claw," by Glen Brogan

Here’s Red in your eye: The Autumn Society, a collective of Philadelphia-based illustrators, is paying homage to the 15th anniversary of Mike Mignola’s signature creation Hellboy with an art show that opens tonight at 6 p.m. at comics retailer Brave New Worlds. Click here to see a gallery of the contributors’ pieces for the show — a truly dazzling array if you have any interested whatsoever in what Mignola (and John Arcudi, and Guy Davis, and Duncan Fegredo, and and and…) hath wrought.

(Hat tip: TJ Dietsch)

Huizenga does Holmes

from "Professor Moriarty" by Kevin Huizenga

Elementary, my dear Ganges! Wildly acclaimed, prodigiously talented cartoonist Kevin Huizenga has taken a break from chronicling the vagaries of our daily existence in his series Ganges and (the late, lamented) Or Else to take on the greatest detective in literary history and his arch-nemesis. (No, not Batman and the Joker, but I like the way you think.)

At his blog, Huizenga has posted a two-page comic featuring the first and final face-to-face confrontations between none other than Sherlock Holmes and Professor Moriarty. The strip is part of the Famous Fictional Villains show at St. Louis’s Mad Art Gallery, curated by Huizenga’s friend, fellow cartoonist, and occasional collaborator Dan Zettwoch. The opening reception for the show — which features baddies ranging from Macbeth‘s witches to Alien‘s facehugger, interpreted by Zettwoch, Huizenga and over a dozen other artists — takes place tonight from 7pm to 11pm.

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