Monday, January 29, 2007

The Kiss of Death

A new image I created for Valentine's Day.
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And here's the original sketch.
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I scanned this and then created the artwork in Adobe Illustrator. I've created a few pieces as vector art, and I'm always happy with the final result. Someone told me the other day that I should do a whole comic in this style! Sure would look nice on glossy paper.... But it would certainly take some serious time to get it done. We'll see, one of these days maybe. But occasionally I just create these because I feel the image calls for it. Other times a painting seems the best way to produce a particular image, and often a good old fashioned pencil or inked drawing is what the art doctor ordered!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

The Human Fly (and little ol' me) in BACK ISSUE #20

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The Human Fly gets the spotlight turned on him in the latest issue of BACK ISSUE, the magazine devoted to the great comics and creators of the 1970s and 80s. Written by the very capable Michael Aushenker, this is the first time I've seen a major article on the Human Fly. Last May, I posted my own little piece on the Human Fly here at Javzilla, but the article in BI #20 really gives us an inside view (as best is possible considering the circumstances) of the Wildest Superhero Ever.
Among those interviewed are former Marvel Editor-in-Chief Jim Shooter as well as inker Steve Leialoha (who a few years back bought an El Muerto t-shirt from me at APE!). Aushenker also scores an interview with rocket engineer Ky Michaelson, who designed an actual rocket bike for the Human Fly! There's a photo of the Human Fly that I've never seen before, as well as this unpublished cover artwork by Fly regular Frank Robbins.
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I'm a huge Fly fan, so this long ovedue article is very much appreciated. Also, Michael is among one of my best friends for the past 10 years or so, and a fellow comic book creator. His off-the-wall EL GATO, CRIME MANGLER ranks as one of the first domestic, masked Mexican wrestler comics, written and illustrated with a gonzo flair that no one can match. Michael is a talented dynamo, with his writing appearing in journalism, children's books and comics (to name a few) and his art has been applied to comic strips and fine art paintings as well as his El Gato series. Suffice to say, Michael also interviewed me for my thoughts on the Fly, and there are some pretty good bits in there about young Javier Hernandez and his quest to find the elusive Human Fly back in the day. Mike even closes the article with a quote from me, as well as deftly plugging El Muerto, my movie and website! Seriously, it was an honor to speak of my enthusiasm for the comic book adventures of this most mysterious true-life superhero. Also interviewed in the piece are our fellow friends/cartoonists Rafael Navarro and Ted Seko. At one time, the four of us, as well as Rhode Montijo, were the creators of our own unique comic book imprint/clubhouse, Big Umbrella. But that is a post for another day!!

Back Issue is produced by TwoMorrows Publishing, the fine folks who print the best in comics coverage, inluding Alter Ego and the exceptional Jack Kirby Collector. Also included in this special Secret Identity issue are interviews/articles on some other classic characters like Moon Knight and The Question, the enigmatic vigilante created by comic icon Steve Ditko. Sure was nice to share info on the Fly in a magazine that also spotlighted the work of Ditko, Sal Buscema, Doug Moench and Don Perlin, among others. Below are some pics of Moon Knight, The Question, and Michael Aushenker's own El Gato, Crime Mangler.

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And an updated thanks to Michael Aushenker for copy-editing this post. He copy-edited a post reviewing an article I wrote where I review an article he wrote where he interviewed me.... Is that nuts, or what?!!

Friday, January 05, 2007

New Years Revolution!

Well, if not a Revolution, maybe just a whole lotta good stuff this year!

Hope y'all had a good Holiday Season and all the best in 2007. I spent the New Year's weekend at an idyllic place by the beach...Ahhhhhhh. Came back on New Year's and realized it was time to hit the art table again, as well as bunches of emails, MySpace Friend requests (hold on, I'm comin'!!) and lots of Life stuff. One thing I had to get to was this little commission one of my Muerto Boardies asked for! He wanted to get some friends of his a personalized El Muerto drawing for Christmas. So, here it is, a tad late, but all inked and signed up. It's on the way to his pals (Geez, I hope they're not reading this blog!)

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For me, 2007 will be about getting a lot of things done, as a person and an artist. Personally, well, you know, better health for mind, body and soul. As an artist, and particularly the creator of El Muerto, let's just say certain things that have been in place for some time now will come into play. Creatively, I want to get many of the things inside my head out onto a surface. Be that Bristol board or canvas or scripts.

One of the resolutions I made to myself was to read a lot more graphic novels. I've recently read Kevin Huizenga's CURSES as well as Guy Delisle's PYONGYANG: A JOURNEY IN NORTH KOREA , an amazing autobiographic adventure into North Korea. I'm currently reading the first volume of BUDDHA by Osama Tezuka. This is an 8 part series from Vertical Books and the storytelling displayed in these books is amazing. Tezuka is called 'god of manga' in Japan, and this is one of the many reasons the late master has earned that title.

I started blogging last March, so a few more months and it'll be our One Year Anniversary here at Javzilla. I hope to make your visits here informative and entertaining. See you back....