New York Comic Con 2017 has come and gone, and once again my 11 O’Clock Comics co-hosts and I want to thank ReedPOP for graciously providing us access to an amazing weekend of extraordinary pop culture, comics splendor.
Artists Alley was rocking, as usual, and I was fortunate to come away with a handful of amazing pieces.
East of West Jam Piece
East of West is one of my favorite Image Series, and I started this new jam piece at the con. I chose a layout that shows the interconnectedness of the major characters.
- The first piece done was Doma Lux by Jim Towe. Jim’s clean, sharp lines are a perfect fit for Lux.
- Ryan Lee was next up, choosing to draw Ezra Orion. Ryan’s organic, gritty pencils evoke the right look for Orion, particularly after he emerges as part of the Chosen.
- The centerpiece of this jam is Babylon, and the only person right for drawing him was Nick Dragotta — the co-creator of East of West. Nick opted to draw a full-figure Babylon (and Balloon!) and used some zip-a-tone for accent.
- Last but certainly not least, Daniel Warren Johnson chose to memorialize Death — arguably the book’s main character (and father of Babylon).
Avengers Villains Jam
This piece was actually finished at Heroes Con earlier this year, or so I thought. However, a handful of the head sketches were drawn in black and white and so I arranged with Paul Mounts to color the rest of the piece at NYCC. Needless to say, he did an amazing job.
- Baron Von Strucker (over Chris Mooneyham inks)
- Baron Zemo (over Matthew Clark inks)
- Beyonder (over Mitch Gerads inks)
- Dr. Doom (over Cory Smith inks)
- The Hood (over Valerio Schiti inks)
- Taskmaster (over Dean Kotz inks)
- Ultron (over Shawn Crystal inks)
Young Avengers Jam
This jam piece was also finished at Heroes Con, save for a handful of uncolored sketches. Rachelle Rosenberg did the finishing colors on this one.
- Iron Lad (over Robson Rocha inks)
- Kid Loki (over Mindy Lee inks)
- Marvel Boy (over Eduardo Pansica inks)
- Speed (over Kevin Wada inks)
- Stature (over M.J. Erickson inks)
- Wiccan (over Adelso Corona inks)
X-Factor Investigations Jam
Peter David’s run on X-Factor was a personal favorite, and this piece (started earlier this year) will eventually feature the twelve main characters. I had two characters added to the piece at NYCC, both thanks to Paolo Belfiore at Cadence Comic Art:
- Havok by Michele Bandini — I met Bandini at the show and was immediately impressed with his portfolio. He happily chose Havok from the available characters. Of particular note is his use of zip-a-tone to add depth to Havok’s circular energy emissions
- Longshot by Valerio Schiti — Valerio threw a clover into the mix as an added nod to Longshot’s good luck powers
This piece was a doozy. I had five open slots at the start of New York and ended up getting all five done by artists associated with Splash Page Art. Thanks to Mark Hay, owner of Splash Page, who made this process a breeze. The five completed head sketches were:
- Black Knight by Dalibor Talijic (black and white)
- Jack of Hearts by Leandro Fernandez (black and white)
- Jocasta by Adrian Sibar (color)
- Starfox by German Peralta (color)
- Wolverine by Goran Sudzuka (color)
I then took the piece to Paul Mounts, who added finishing colors to the piece much in the same way he did for the Avengers Villains piece earlier in the show.
- Black Knight (over Dalibor Talijic inks)
- Dr. Druid (over Brian Level inks)
- Dr. Strange (over Tom Raney inks)
- Hellcat (over Soo Lee inks)
- Jack of Hearts (over Leandro Fernandez inks)
- Photon (over Valentine De Landro inks)
- Spider-Man (over Jae Lee inks)
- Spider-Woman (over Bret Blevins inks)
- U.S. Agent (over Russ Braun inks)
Uncanny X-Men Jam
I’m thrilled with how this piece is coming along; the second X-men jam I’ve undertaken. Two characters were added to this jam over the weekend:
- Gambit by Brian Vander — Vander, who just recently sat down for an interview with me, opted for Gambit and I’m thrilled with the way it turned out
- Sage by Mahmud Asrar — Mahmud is a good friend and an incredibly talented artist. Sage is an underappreciated member of the X-men, and Mahmud’s majestic cartooning really brought her to life
Moby Dick Commissions by Daniel Warren Johnson and Riley Rossmo
Moby Dick is one of my favorite novels, and arguably the greatest American novel ever written. This year I decided to start commissioning different artists’ versions of Moby Dick. My hope was giving them a “non-comic” idea like this would invite creativity and top-notch composition, and it literally couldn’t have turned out better. Thanks to Felix Lu of Felix Comic Art for arranging the first two pieces.
Stunning. What more can be said? Daniel (Warren Johnson) chose to portray the white whale as the entirety of the background, which makes the whale seem appropriately majestic. You can almost feel the waves crashing against the whaler’s boat as Moby Dick breaches the water.
No sooner do I think Daniel’s interpretation is impossible to match than Riley (Rossmo) shows me this beauty. The colors! Riley’s choices here are top notch in every way. Using the whale as the silhouette. The determined look on Ahab’s face. The (tiny) Pequod far off near the horizon. The colors!!!
It wouldn’t be a convention without a handful of Domino commissions.
Chris Wildgoose is currently working his cartooning magic on Batgirl, and I simply had to take the opportunity to get his interpretation of my favorite character. Chris shines with his composition, in particular, the gun. Rob Liefeld would be proud!
Adrian Sibar delivered a whimsical version of Domino that befits her personality in most of her appearances. I love the wink and the fact she’s got a massive machine gun but points the revolver as the viewer instead.
German Peralta was a pleasure to work with, and his use of watercolors with an intentionally messy element suits Domino well. Small details like her green eyes and the tousled hair give her a realistic quality that works well, particularly when juxtaposed against many of the traditionally inked pieces within my portfolio.
The scan doesn’t do Mateus Santolouco justice. This piece is hyper-detailed, you can almost feel the texture of the bulletproof padding on her costume. If I had my druthers, this is exactly what Domino would look like in the upcoming Deadpool 2 film.
Maria Laura Sanapo, who recently did an interview with us, answered the call here with a more voluptuous, sexy version of Domino. That style befits Maria’s artistic preferences, and this Domino would fit right in as a guest appearance in DC’s Bombshells (if Marvel and DC allowed a crazy crossover). Of note, Maria recently wed Marco Santucci, whose Domino commission remains the most viewed of all my pieces on ComicArtFans.
Fantomex Commission by Eric Zawadzki
Last but certainly not least is this Fantomex by Eric Zawadzki. For some reason, I only got one Fantomex piece at the show, but luckily for me, Eric’s rendition was a worthy addition to the gallery. He’s not the first person to draw Fantomex falling through the air, but he is the first to render the Parisian cityscape. The best detail is the painting in Fantomex’ arms, a fitting nod to his “day job” as a thief.
As always, you can look at the majority of my art collection on ComicArtFans. If you’re a fellow art collector, I would love to see your collection.