Archive for March, 2011

Logo: for a pal

Posted in Illustration, Logos with tags , , , on March 28, 2011 by uncannymanfrog

Here’s a quick little illustration that was fun to do.  It’s for my friend’s business.

I’m working late tonight on my  Macbook Pro at  Shades of Brown, the coffee shop on Brookside, here in Tulsa.

I like the atmosphere here.   And enjoy working while listening to Pandora internet radio, via headphones, and drinking hot tea.

I’d recommend illustrators or cartoonists get a good laptop, and an Intuos drawing tablet.    It’s freed me from the confines of Miracle Studios, and I’m now able to work anywhere that affords me a table and a Wifi connection!

Storyboards: Glasses TV Commercial

Posted in Storyboards with tags , , , on March 27, 2011 by uncannymanfrog

More storyboards!!

Comps: Studio Promo

Posted in Comps, Promotional Illustration with tags , , , , , , on March 23, 2011 by uncannymanfrog

This is supposed to be a blog of a working cartoonist.  Here’s something I’ve been working on today.  Compositional layouts for Miracle Studios’  Workbook ad.   Workbook is this big thick book that is sent by the tens of thousands out to art directors all over North America, and some over seas.   It’s one way we advertise the studio.

Here’s another version.   I could use some feedback.  Which one do you prefer?

 

Comics Writer: Bill Spangler

Posted in writers with tags , , , , , , on March 20, 2011 by uncannymanfrog

Bill Spangler and I used to work together on Larry Niven‘s Gil the Arm comic book  adaptations.   But that’s not what this post is about.   Actually I wanted to call attention to a review Bill wrote on Magnus Robot Fighter that is very comprehensive and includes the  Valiant Comics run published back in the nineties.  Check it out to complete your education of Magnus!   http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/spangler_09_10/

Bookshelf: Magnus Robot Fighter

Posted in Bookshelf with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on March 20, 2011 by uncannymanfrog

Dark Horse Comics has been putting out anthologies of the Gold Key Comics from back in the sixties.   These have included, “Turock, Son of Stone, “Doctor Solar, Man of the Atom” and  “Magnus Robot Fighter 4000 AD”.

Russ Manning created this series for Gold Key in 1963.    He pitched it to Gold Key editors as a futuristic Tarzan.   Instead of being raised by apes his hero was raised by a robot.  The series is set in 4000 A D, in the city of North AM, which spans the continent.  People have grown weak, and lazy because robots do all the work for them.   Even  televised sports feature robots competing against each other.  The robots  have a programmed code, which is basically Isaac Asimov’s robot rules which  are :  1. A robot must not allow a human to be harmed.  2. A robot must obey human commands, except when they violate rule 1.   and 3. a robot must protect themselves  except when it violates rules 1 and 2.

Occaisionally a robot goes bad  or begins ordering humans about…..


That’s when Magnus steps in,  smashing the robots with his bare hands.   As a robot is destroyed it emits its signature death cry. “SQUEEEEEEE”

 

 

But this is not a series about endless slugfests between Magnus and robots.  Manning takes the time to flesh out his characters, and fill his stories with details about the society and technology of 4000 AD.

His futuristic designs are beautiful,  from the smooth buildings, and streamlined flying cars to Leejah’s ( his love interest) semi transparent dress.

Check out this sleek flying car!

 

If there is an element of “clunk” in the series, it’s in the design of the Magnus’ old robot teacher,  1A.  Here are the first two pages of  Magnus Robot Fighter number 1.  1A gives his pupil last minute instructions before turning him loose in North Am.

Here are some beautifully painted covers from the series.  The anthology I’m reviewing includes the first six or seven stories.  These particular ones aren’t in the book.   My one and only complaint with this paper back edition is that the covers aren’t reprinted on a slick stock to really show off the gorgeous paintings.

Magnus leaves us with a warning at the end of one of the stories….  reading it now fifty years later it seems more relevant, somehow.  Perhaps in another fifty years it will be deemed as good advice,  that is if the robots haven’t banned the comic by then.

 

Miracle Squad Interview!

Posted in Miracle Squad with tags , , , , , , , , on March 19, 2011 by uncannymanfrog


Back Issue Magazine #47 has an interview with John Wooley and I about  The Miracle Squad.    I’ts just now hitting the stands.   You can check it out at here at TwoMorrows Publishing. They also will sell you a digital copy of the magazine you can download immediately.

Here’s one page out of an extensive article.  And while I’m talking about  The Miracle Squad, I don’t want to fail to mention it will be rereleased soon in two thick graphic novels from our new publisher Pulp 2.0

But the best reason for getting your mitts on a copy of Back Issue #47 is to read the last interview with Dave Stevens!  Dave is the creator of the Rocketeer.  He was a great illustrator and nice guy.  He passed away about 3 years ago way too early at 52.    I was once referred to in the fan press  as ” the poor man’s Dave Stevens” , probably as a put down , but I always took it as a compliment.  I knew him briefly and he was always gave me encouragement and advice to help me get started in my career.  His best advice was;  it is better to take your time and do a handful of really good illustrations, then it is to do lots of mediocre ones.  Read our article and learn how there might have been a Rocketeer/ Miracle Squad crossover.     Yeah, it COULD have happened!

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Classic Comic Covers Recreated

Posted in Illustration with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 18, 2011 by uncannymanfrog

 

Silver Surfer

Behold…. The Silver Surfer!   One of the coolest things about being a cartoonist is having friends that are also cartoonists!   Such as my pal Bruce McCorkindale.   Bruce is not only the inker on one of the hottest selling comics going,  Godzilla, but also the mastermind behind these classic comic cover recreations!   These unique pieces of art are so cool I ended up buying two……

Everyone who knows me, knows I’m a huge Batman fan, so I had to have this one.

 

 

Now everyone that visits me will know, ’cause it’s hanging on the living room wall!

When he can find them, Bruce works off of photocopies of the penciler’s work.   So for instance, on a Fantastic Four cover, it’s Kirby/McCorkindale instead of Kirby/Sinnott

Bruce even adds the printers marks, such as the registration marks and notes along the edge.  I prefer to crop them out with the matt boards.

 

 

 

 

Bruce McCorkindale

 

 

 

If you’re interested in having Bruce recreate one or two of your favorite old comic covers , let me know.  I think his rules are it has to be one from the 1970’s or older and the illustrator has to be deceased.