OK, folks.... I'm thrilled to announce that my web site has been completely redesigned. The MIKEWIERINGO.COM address is exactly the same-- the only difference is that I'm ending my blogging here on this BLOGGER template for that portion of my old site. For those of you who've always entered by the main URL, nothing's changed (besides the site redesign). For those of you who have this blog bookmarked as your primary entry to my site-- well, let's all head over to THE ALL-NEW MIKEWIERINGO.COM
I've got to make it quick today-- even though I'm posting later in the day than I usually do. I felt like drawing Peter Parker in his now iconic 'interrupted photo assignment' situation. I always loved it when Peter was employed at THE DAILY BUGLE as a photographer (I prefer that soooo much more than 'Peter as teacher'). J. Jonah Jameson would send Pete out on an assignment, Peter's Spider-sense would go off like an alarm, and he'd have to abandon his assignment to go save the day. He would, however, always web up his camera to get pictures of himself in action as SPIDER-MAN to then sell to the WEBHEAD-hating Jameson. It was always amusing to me to watch Peter having to awkwardly explain how he somehow missed his ASSIGNED photo task, but ended up making up for it by getting yet another batch of pictures of SPIDER-MAN to sell to Jonah. It's one of those absurd-- and yet somehow comfortingly repetitive-- character plays that enamored so many fans to the SPIDER-MAN mythos. It's akin to the similar situation of Clark Kent and Lois Lane out together when something threatening happens-- and as Lois turns to say something to Clark, she notices he's gone.... just as SUPERMAN shows up on the scene to save the day. Lois always suspects that Clark and SUPERMAN might be one-and-the-same... but she just can't really wrap her mind around it.
It's all part and parcel of the delightfully familiar rhythm of our favorite superhero icons.
OK... I hope you all have a great weekend.
This is Entry 384.
This took way longer than I was hoping it would. After agonizing over what I was going to do for the upcoming HEROES CON program book (you saw some of the sketches I was mulling over in earlier posts), I came up with an idea. Since one of the themes for this year's con is the SPIDER-MAN BLACK of the new SPIDER-MAN 3 movie, I thought it would be fun to recreate the cover I did for my first issue of FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD SPIDER-MAN, only with SPIDER-MAN in the black costume instead of his traditional red and blues. I decided that I would try to do this as one of my 'blog-style' sketches and work it up in blue and graphite pencil. Unfortunately, I didn't like the way it was turning out. I tried to trace the original cover image and just change the costume details to the black version. It LOOKED traced and very stiff and lifeless. Then a light bulb went off over my head, and I thought of just doing a rough re-creation of that cover.... but giving it the SPIDER-HAM twist. I've had a lot of fun drawing different superhero characters in the 'HAM' style... and I really enjoyed drawing the cover and 6 pages from last year's SPIDER-HAM special. So combining the two elements into a humorous take on that cover seemed like a fun idea. I like the way it came out.
To refresh your memory (or show you the cover if you've never seen it in the first place) I thought I'd post a jpeg of it here:
OK... gotta get back to work....
This is Entry 383.
Mike|||5708523744729228898|||HEROES CON SPIDER-HAM
Memorial Day has become the day known as 'the unofficial start of Summer'-- and a holiday in which everyone travels to visit family, or has cookouts where they grill hotdogs and hamburgers. The day is, however-- and much more importantly-- the day in which we are supposed to remember those Americans who gave their lives in the wars our country has been involved in since its birth. War is a terrible and ugly thing. It's a tragedy that war has become a fact of mankind's existence from its very beginning (however you believe that beginning came about). Modern warfare-- which many believe began with our own Civil War-- is especially horrific. However I might personally feel about war, though, my admiration for those brave citizens of this country who are willing to stand up and fight the battles their civilian leaders send them into knows no bounds. Today I will reflect on the Americans who have lost their lives in the name of this country. This is not a day for taking sides on whether any given war is justified or not... it is a day for thanking those men and women who have lived... and died... for us and the ideals our country was founded on.
I'll also think about those Veterans of wars past and present who are still with us. Vets like my Father, who was in both Korea and Vietnam-- and vets like Nick Cardy. Nick, who is not only one of my favorite artists from the Silver Age of comic books-- but was a member of a tank crew in the European Theater of Operations during World War II. We are losing our Veterans from that generation to time as more and more of them pass on from this mortal coil-- and it's on a day like today that I'm proud to know Nick. I look forward to seeing him every year at HEROES CON in Charlotte.
So today--spend some time reflecting on those who have lost their lives in military service for us.
This is Entry 382.
Over at COMICBOOKRESOURCES.COM. there's an article and some artwork on the new THOR series coming later this year, written by J. Michael Strazynski and drawn by the BRILLIANT Olivier Copiel. I really like the redesigned 'costume' that Copiel came up with for THOR'S return. It's got the feel of the original clothing, with some nice touches thrown in-- like the (what looks like) [chain?] mail he now wears on his arms and legs. I haven't yet seen a very clear shot of the entire outfit... so I'm sure I got some of the details wrong in today's sketch. The sketch didn't turn out as well as I'd like, but that's usually the case every time I draw a character or outfit for the first time.
OK... I'm going to leave it there for this week. I hope everyone has a wonderful Memorial Day weekend.... it's certainly going to be a gorgeous weekend around here in North Carolina.
This is Entry 381.
Mike|||8755130779874868711|||THUNDER GOD FRIDAY
I felt like drawing something that wasn't so.... slick ... this morning. Even though they're supposed to be just 'sketches', I still feel like-- for the most part-- they should be as close to finished as I can make them so they'll read well enough for everyone to see. That makes me have to try to be a bit more precise with the lines than some mornings I feel like attempting. So today I was feeling a bit less inclined to try to be as sharp as I normally am-- and when thinking about what I could sketch in that mode, a caveman came to mind. I watch a lot of THE HISTORY CHANNEL, DISCOVERY CHANNEL and the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CHANNEL on cable-- and some of my favorite programs are the shows the do about either dinosaurs or early man. The WALKING WITH DINOSAURS and WALKING WITH CAVEMEN series of programs DISCOVERY CHANNEL produced were really fascinating to me. So I thought I'd indulge that interest for today's sketch.
OK... another quick in-and-out today. Back to work...
This is Entry 380.
I'm going to have to make this a quick on this morning.... deadlines are beginning to feel like a vise around my neck. I thought it would be interesting to draw a character that I've only drawn, I think, one time before. That was for the cover of a trade paperback collecting stories from several Marvel characters. I don't remember the name of the trade... but I remember that THE PUNISHER was one of the characters I had to draw. Since then, though, I don't think I've ever had the occasion to draw him for Marvel again. So for today's sketch, I decided I'd draw Frank Castle... especially since he's one of those dark, gritty street level characters I'm certainly not known for drawing. It's also a BIT topical in that Thomas Jane has pulled out of reprising his roll as PUNISHER in the coming sequel. Since the first one didn't do all that well, I don't really see what the big deal is.... but I'm grasping at straws for a connection.
OK... back to the salt mines....
This is 379.
I've got a 'CREATURE FEATURE' two-fer for you today to close out the week. I very rarely give preview looks at anything I'm working on before the specific book ships. I don't know why-- lots of comic book artists with blogs will often show sneak peeks of the projects their working on as they're laboring... but I've not done that much if at all. I thought perhaps I'd break that 'radio silence' for today--- mainly just because I just designed these creatures and they're fresh on my mind.... and if I don't post them now, they're likely to get lost in the reams and reams of sketches, layouts and thumbnails I've got stacked around here. If I don't share 'em now, the could be buried for months before I come across them again.
I won't give you any specifics on what these creatures are and when they appear... I'll let you find out on your own. Or... maybe you'll figure it out. That's the fun of it.
OK... have a great weekend.
This is Entry 378.
Today's sketch is a bit rough, because it's a sketch for a potential alternative to the HEROES CON program book possibilty I posted earlier this week. Monday I posted a SPIDER-MAN BLACK sketch that might end up being the final piece.... but I also like this SILVER SURFER sketch. I drew it almost immediately after finishing the SPIDER-MAN sketch because I was feeling loose and warmed up and thought I'd try my had at GALACTUS's former Herald. I liked it a lot before actually studying it -- but now it looks as though the SURFER'S left leg is kind of mirroring the shape of his board. That could be a bit distracting... and I don't know whether to change it or not. How about you folks...? Does it look odd to you?
OK.. sorry to have to jump out so quickly, but work beckons...!
This is Entry 377.
I've got two items to share with you today. The above sketch is something I'm thinking about working up for this year's HEROES CON program book. Every year, Shelton Drum (HEROES founder -- both the show, and the store HEROES AREN'T HARD TO FIND) has a theme for his shows and his program book. This year the themes are SPIDER-MAN in his black costume to tie-in with the SPIDER-MAN 3 film and SILVER SURFER in celebration of the FANTASTIC FOUR: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER movie debuting this summer. It's also HEROES CON's Silver Anniversary. 25 years of the most fun, fan-friendly comic book show in the country. That's one heck of an accomplishment. This will by MY 22nd time at HEROES. I went to my first HC back in 1985 with my buddy Paul Rogers-- who now owns his own comic book store back in my old stomping grounds of Lynchburg, Virginia. We were both enthusiastic fans back then... and now we're both grizzled old veterans of the comic book industry. There wasn't a show in '86 (never knew why...) but I've been there for every show since its resurrection in 1987. That's a lot of HEROES CONS.
I got a wild hair this past weekend and decided to try coloring the FLYBOY sketch I posted here last year (March 9, 2006 to be exact). I always liked the way that sketch came out and I've always had the thought deep in the back of my mind to color it. I'm so far behind in my deadlines on SPIDER-MAN/FF that I'm going to be working on the damned thing all the way up to the show this year... and I don't see myself having the time to put together a sketchbook this year or work up any pre-show illustrations to sell. Things are just too tight at this point. So I'd like to have a large variety of prints to offer in case folks might be interested in that kind of thing. I thought that FLYBOY would work well for that.
My brother Matt-- aka MAFUS-- has started his own blog. I'm glad to see him do this... because blogs can be not only a fun thing to do-- but can be at times cathartic. I know it's been that for me on many occasions. Matt's a great writer, and I've encouraged him to pursue that from time to time. I'd love to one day see him write his 'great American novel'... or write comics. He's full of terrific ideas and he has a great ear for dialogue. So go check out his blog... he's just getting started... and I can't wait to see where he goes.
OK... I need to get back to the grind.
This is Entry 376.
Mike|||1496760510740438844|||SPIDER-MAN IN BLACK and FLYBOY IN COLOR