Friday, February 25, 2011

Bonus 'Finger Puppet' update!

By popular demand (well...  at least someone asked), here's ALL of the finger puppets (in all their crude Sharpie hand drawn glory) for your amusement. I promise this Tuesday I'll post some actual ART-WORK, instead of dolls, puppets and all this other crafty carp-o-la I've such a soft spot for.

Here's a lo-rez reminder who's in our cast of puppets are so far (in case you lost track, or are bothering to even keep track):

Now here's the bigger versions ready to go: Just print, cut out, and decorate your various digits, should that be your particular fetish! : ) 

Of course from the 'My Inner Bimbo' comic. This is the one you wear on your finger when you're feeling relentlessly cute. 

This was the main character from the same 'Bimbo' comic. Wear this on a finger that is balding, getting old and regrets stuff. 

Dana appears briefly in the Bimbo comic, but gets a FOUR-issue series (yeah, she's that important!).  This goes on your pinky, because Dana's got a lesbian peter pan complex, and stubbornly refuses to grow up.

Dana's sister Nola. Gets her own book. Punk-ish bad girl. '...lovely, lonely and mad at her mom'. Nola goes on your 'bad-ass rebellious finger'.  In case you're not sure which one one that is, hint: she's showing you. 

 Here's the Bimbo in her true form (not how Lo projects her to be). This really is more of a thumb choice if you ask me. Too bad the Bimbo comic was in B&W, other wise you'd see the Bimbo seal was actually primally PINK. Just download the movie 'Secret of Roan Inish', and pretend all the seals are pink.

Where it all started. 

Maybe you first saw one in the Bimbo comic, but there are maybe hundreds that people have built from the 1900s and up. See a trout, get a vision, build a box. Now a magic Box gets its own finger too. 
I've no idea.  I just needed to fill up an extra slot  to make 10 fingers. (shrug) 

Also from Bimbo, remember Lo used a blow-up doll, an old photograph and a sword to face the Female Disapproval Sea Monster. You really should plow through the Bimbo comic; I swear this isn't a plug. Okay, maybe a little.

Now THIS guy again!!! Sheesh. Yup, he's the common thread throughout all our finger puppets, and the whole Trout-a-verse to boot. 

So, there you go.  Plus I threw it up in the middle of the week too: MORAL: It's truly amazing what lengths I'll go to to AVOID finishing comic pages. : )  

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I can't seem to ditch this little guy...

Brian Kondravy was cool enough to pass along this freaky little hand sown Maxx doll that he came across somewhere on Ebay. - thanks buddy!  Now it it's fate is to sulks moodily on my studio couch.  Kinda cool... in a disturbing sort of way.

I've given up on trying to escape Maxx stuff, in various forms the little dude  keeps tracking me down no matter how far I run. * sigh * But bonus points as whoever made it... they sowed his humungous feet even bigger than I used too!

I'll post more stuff next week. Things are tight this week deadline wise.. bear with me?

- sam

Thursday, February 17, 2011

My Seven Worst Jobs

In an effort to stay humble and laugh at myself a little... I'm doing the UNTHINKABLE: throwing up the seven WORST jobs I've done in comics. Worse in my opinion, that is. I know you may have your favorites, but these are just the ones that haunt me. 


1 INFINITY Inc #49. 1st DC job inking! Hell, my first job for either of the Big Two. After I turned it in, Roy Thomas said, "You're not thinking of doing this professionally, are you?" I don't blame him for asking! 

This baldheaded guy suffers the most; I feel sorry he was stuck with me as an inker. His doesn't look male, female or even human after I got finished with him. Didn't help that I knew none of these characters I was inking...

This poor guy's left eye seem to be floating off his face, doesn't it? Not the penciller's fault either—this was all MY fault. Yikes! 

Check out the cover, which doesn't look to bad—probably because I didn't do it. Sorta ironic that it has the old Sandman on the cover isn't it? I had no idea another version of this character would show up in my life a short time later. 


2 VARIOUS I Before E stories panels. This was an anthology of early comic stories before I broke into Marvel or DC. 

These two ... from different stories... show endless struggles with women's faces, what I call the 'pinched face' I often succumbed to. No wonder the first woman looks so distressed, with eyes that big! Check out the second face: it's so small, it's just freaky looking! 

And check out this guy's massive neck; looks like a leather sausage.  Sorta got away from me...


3 Mr. Monster short story.  This was an experiment I used to try, drawing very tiny then blowing up the art in photocopies. It worked when I tried it later in Maxx. It didn't work here. Apologies to Mr. Monster creator Michael T. Gilbert who just scratched his head when he saw it. 


4 Judge Dredd story. Rushed out. And first story I painted, obviously. I actually think every mistake I currently make can be traced back to this story, for better or worse. 


5 Marvel presents 100 (especially the last two-thirds of the book, also rushed out in 1 day). 


6 Honorable mention goes to this wonky panel from Zero Girl. My pal Vassilis pointed it out, after I kept prodding him to come up with SOMETHING that he wasn't wild about. It is kind of an odd angle for the guy's head, let alone being vertical and just kilter (even for that book). 


7 Guess which one this is? If you isolate this panel, you'll be struck by what appears to be re-touched up art of a drawing of Fred and Barney Rubble, which is what it is. Not Dringenberg's fault, this one's all my fault. Mike actually made it look better. Yup, if you hadn't guessed yet, it's from that infamous sucker, Sandman Number 1. 

Now, as to all the horrible art I currently do, there's simply too much of it to keep track of. But I will say one thing: at least nowadays it's 'on purpose'. Sorta. At least the idea that it's on purpose gives me the illusion of control. 

Next week, some carefully edited art that probably makes me look better than I actually am. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Other People's Art...

Was looking around my studio, and I'm amazed at how much stuff in here is NOT made by me...


Have no clue who made this; it's not signed. Came across it in a local Flea Market and bought it for 25 bucks. I just liked what kind of mind dreamt it up. The guy who sold it said he was in a poker game and some guy who lost to him offered it in lieu of payment.

All those wires and plugs ... astonishing what went into making the finished piece. If I find out who did it, I'll throw their name up on here. It's a stunning bit of work.

So many amazing things people make end up in thrifts and garage sales. Forgotten Gems.


This cute little clay Ojo figure was made by the little girl who starred in the Ojo feature. She gave it to me on the last day of shooting. It sits on my coffee table and it's kinda sweet, lurking there. Its clay leg broke off and she glued it back on, which seems fitting, given the story.


My father painted still lifes and abstracts, but this human head is the only clay figure my dad ever made. I gave it a pair of glasses and will use it in one of my Dana stories. He made it when I was a little. For some reason, as a kid, I stuck a pencil in the head, making several holes. My dad filled them in with colored clay. He pulled it from a draw a while back and showed it to me, "Remember this?"  I was thrilled, had forgotten all about it. I asked if I could have it, and he shrugged "sure". He asked me why I once poked holes in its head?

I shrugged, embarrassed. I STILL don't know why I did that. He handed it to me and said, "No worries. You may as well have it. It just sits in a drawer around here."


No clue about this one either. Came across it at a thrift. It looks handmade from clay, not merchandized, but who knows?  It kinda looks like some forgotten relic from an imaginary civilization, doesn't it? Again, if anyone knows who made it, I'll throw credit up on the blog...


Here's something my cousin Dave's daughter made that was lying around our old studio. She was always creating or drawing on things, and this little smiley face survived three studio moves. It always reminds me of when I was drawing the Maxx and my cousin was doing Cow and Chicken. Dave's daughter would often be drawing on the floor at his feet, or creating something out of whatever was lying around.


My mother made this for me from a pez figure (anyone know what one?). She apologized for the paint job, which she felt was rather sloppy, but I didn't care about that. It was the fact that she made it, with love.

It moodily lies tucked away beside mermaids, dusty old books, dinosaurs and the clay Ojo figure, all on my studio coffee table. Hey, what other mom makes their kid's creation into an art piece from a Pez dispenser? Oh yeah, on the right, in shadow, is Alex Pardee's candle label he made, which I've shown before in other posts.

But here it is again, in case you missed it.

So that's about it. Various, random or sentimental art—which gets me out of posting my OWN art this week!   : )

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Aborted Frazetta piece & the original Mr. Gone...

A while back I was asked to do some Frazetta comics, but I was reluctant. We already have a Frazetta and he's a hell of an artist to live up to. The publisher assured me he and Frank didn't want artists to just copy this style... 

So, I tried a few pencil sketches... 

Then tried to paint the Death Dealer too. But it soon became clear that, especially with my limitations as a painter, I was in over my head. I was just wasting time trying to be anybody else except me. Some artists might pull it off, but I missed the mark. I had to find my own style. But failure's always the best  way to figure out what you don't look like. At least for me it was. That's why I shared these. 

I also threw these pieces up because, like tons of other artists, I really respect Frazetta's technic and compositional skills, and was sad to hear of his passing. I never got to meet him, but his influence was felt on TONS of artists. 

Had we ever met, I'd like to hope he'd have told me that  I was better off being myself too. 

Here's something else kinda odd. I forgot that, before Mr. Gone was a skinny pencil-headed guy, his name was 'Bill' in this layout. I used this same layout for another story where I re-named him Milo, with the same face. But this was the original on an ugly yellow note pad. 

Maxx would have been a totally different series if Mr. Gone looked like this, eh?  Back then Julie was called 'Pam' but looked the same, more or less. It was all still slowly forming together in the old days. 

You'll see all this crap in some of the art books I have coming out later. Of course the Trout was in there too, lying dormant in old musty sketch books, as magical Trouts usually do. 

And just for fun, here's an old Ojo brush and ink by the astounding Alex Pardee. He drew this sucker back when he was helping me out with the Ojo comics years ago. Nobody draws weird creatures crap quite like Alex, eh? Yeah, I know, I stupidly taped the page, leaving some brown stuff on it... but if I peeled it up now, it'd rip the ink off. * sigh * 

Okay, until next week...