Monday, August 15, 2011

November Solicits

Hey guys! Here's some of the cool stuff I'm working on coming out in November!

MEGA MAN #8"Time Keeps Slipping" Part Four: The finale to Mega Man's newest adventure! Dr. Wily has captured Roll and turned the eight Robot Masters against Mega Man! Can the blue bomber and Federal agent Roslyn Krantz turn the tides, save Roll, and bring down Dr. Wily for good? Don't miss this thrilling conclusion!
Script: Ian Flynn
Art: Chad Thomas, Gary Martin, John Workman and Matt Herms
Cover by Patrick "Spaz" Spaziante
Shipping Date: 11/23/11
On Sale at Comic Specialty Shops: 12/7/11
On Sale on Newsstands: 12/13/11
32-page, full color comic
$2.99 US
SONIC THE HEDGEHOG #231"Lost in the Moment": The world is safe - but at a terrible cost. As Sonic tries to rally the Freedom Fighters, Dr. Eggman unleashes his Titan Metal Sonic on the city! Can our heroes salvage the fight, or is there just too much chaos to handle? Then, in "Haunted," the effects of "Genesis" bring back some old problems for Ixis Naugus.
Script: Ian Flynn
Art: Ben Bates, Evan Stanley, Terry Austin, John Workman and Matt Herms
Cover by Ben Bates
Shipping Date: 11/16/11
On Sale at Comic Specialty Shops: 11/30/11
On Sale on Newsstands: 12/6/11
32-page, full color comic
$2.99 US
SONIC UNIVERSE #34"Babylon" Part Two: The Babylon Rogues have found the way to revive the long-lost city of Babylon Garden! The only thing standing in their way is the entire Battle Bird Armada. Feathers fly as the feuding factions finally throw down for the first time! Rogues vs. Armada! Jet vs. Speedy! The Battle Lord in action! You cannot miss this intense installment!
Script: Tracy Yardley!
Art: Tracy Yardley!, Jim Amash, Phil Felix and Stephen Downer
Cover by Tracy Yardley! and Matt Herms
Shipping Date: 11/9/11
On Sale at Comic Specialty Shops: 11/23/11
On Sale on Newsstands: 11/29/11
32-page, full color comic
$2.99 US

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Super Fighting Robot

So last October, Archie Comics made a huge announcement at New York ComiCon: After years of success with the Sonic the Hedgehog license - in fact, holding the World Record for the longest comic book based on a video game property - Archie was now partnering with Capcom to bring the blue bomber to comics! Mega Man would have a new monthly comic book!

So, it's not exactly the first time... Dreamwave Productions managed to knock out four fairly collectible issues before the plug got pulled, and one of them featured some gorgeous artwork by Sonic veteran Patrick "Spaz" Spaziante. And so Patrick was naturally a perfect fit to launch the book's first story arc, a faithful recreation of the first game's plot written by Ian Flynn.

'Roundabout fall of last year, my editor Paul at Archie had asked me how I'd feel about taking on coloring chores for a second monthly title. "Over the moon excited," I told 'im. As a freelancer, you're pretty constantly conscious of the need to fill your calendar with work - something that I've not had to worry about for some time now, as the folks at Archie Comics have been nothing but awesome to me. I've been given some really great opportunities. 

When Paul told me that second book would be Mega Man, I could barely contain myself. I mean, I already color for one insanely successful blue video game icon... Now TWO?? Between this and Sonic, I find I am constantly challenged and rewarded creatively with the awesome art we put together for these books, and I am very pleased-'n'-proud to be a part of that every month.

Plus, I got to color for friggin' Spaz for four issues. He was my favorite penciler on Sonic when I was growing up. You have no idea how hard it was to not fan-boy the hell out when I'd get e-Mails from him.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Heads-Up, Squaddies!

So about a year ago I had the awesome opportunity to draw up some test illustrations for Hasbro Toys' "Super Hero Squad" line. This is an awesome, kinda' chibi-cartoon stylized take on Marvel's superheroes that has been so insanely successful that it's become a brand of its own with a cartoon, comic books, and video games! None of these illustrations were used for anything to my knowledge, but it was still an incredible joy to be drawing the likes of Spider-Man and Iron Man for Hasbro!
These... are not those illustrations. However, I had so much fun with the cartoony style of the Squad that I decided to do some of my own takes on my favorite super heroes, much inspired by the Super Hero Squad. These were drawn up and colored in 2010, right before the summer convention season.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Sonic the Hedgehog Cover Gallery (part 3)

I was at my local comic book store today and they had brought out a ton of Sonic the Hedgehog back-issues from storage... It was surreal seeing books I read when I was a kid sitting right next to the books that I worked on! I've been on the Sonic books since 2007, but it still hits me every now and again just how cool it is to be working on the very series I collected so passionately as a child.

It's the eve to our big 225th issue! This is another pretty dark cover. Eggman looks creepy as hell here, and that's how I love 'im!  
Technically, not a cover. This is a frontis piece - an introductory page that's a sorta' "Previously on..." lead into our main story. The artist, Jon Gray, I've known for forever. For almost as long as I've known our writer, Ian Flynn. Jon is an incredible talent and a sweet, hilarious man and we've wanted to work together on something for nearly as long as we've known each other. So this piece was very special to me to work on. It was also special to the fans - this was our big "Sonic and Sally, back together!" moment... And Jon had drawn the controversial scene that had broken them up nearly seven years earlier!
Hey, this one looks familiar, right? It was in the very first post I made in this blog. This was the 2011 Sonic Free Comic Book Day cover. Our editor typically tries to get as many freelancers as possible involved in every FCBD issue. Last year I got to color the interiors, and this year I got to do this gorgeous throwback to classic Sonic gaming by the talented Tracy Yardley!


A-a-and Mikey makes four.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Sonic the Hedgehog Cover Gallery (part 2)

The retrospective continues! This was my first big cover collaboration with penciler Ben Bates. Ben has often put alot of "Easter Eggs" into his interior art - tiny or hidden homages to other pop icon and video game characters or Sonic mythology. This cover was no exception. Check out our little reindeer friend from One Piece over there on the right of the cover! Sadly, he was cropped off in the final pic.

This cover was handed in around November and colored to reflect a fall theme, but my editor Paul reminded me that this issue wouldn't drop until closer to Spring... So we changed up some of the color scheme and the leaves to fit!

It's the evil wizard, Ixis Naugus! Another of those "dark period" covers I talked about... I actually referenced some comic book covers for Marvel's Venom to get the tongue and saliva rendering down!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Sonic the Hedgehog Cover Gallery (part 1)

Hey guys! So I'm covering for our Sonic Universe cover colorist Ben Hunzeker right now, so I thought I'd do a quick retrospective of some of my favorite covers I got to color this last year!

My first cover coloring ever! For Sonic the Hedgehog #217 (left) and #218 (right) and a story called "Thicker Than Water," featuring a desert landscape and the Oil Ocean Zone from the video game Sonic the Hedgehog 2. I kinda' dipped my toe into cover colors with a pretty easy-to-do color scheme... Sonic's blue, so he pops off re-e-e-al well from oranges/yellows. Still though, these are a couple of my absolute faves.
Entering my "dark period." Almost every cover I colored from here to #224 was really heavy on dark and dreary blues. It matched the tone of those stories, at least... This one was pretty interesting... As you can see, I've lost the raw artwork for this so this is actually what went to solicits and print, touched up by the wonderfuly talented in-house guys at Archie.

I colored this one while I was away at a convention - so every night I'd come back up to the hotel room and render a character/BG piece... The original composition was a little off, so when it was done we actually rotated it backwards a bit, which helped smooth out the perspective alot. The lightning was SO much fun to render, too.