Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Star Spangled Man

When they announced a Captain America movie I was pretty skeptical to say the least. I actually remember those two 1970's television movies with Reb Brown as a Californian Captain America. Pretty bad stuff. And so was that 80's version with Matt Salinger! Complete with rubber ears!! If you don't know what I am talking about, go Google them. So my nervousness was assuaged when Joe Johnston was tapped to direct it. Loving The Rocketeer I knew that Cap was in good hands and he didn't disappoint. I thought it was a fun and mostly faithful adaptation and they presented us with making a guy wearing a flag actually believable. No small feat. If I were to complain about anything (and I am. That was the cue.), is that there were no references to Joe Simon or Jack Kirby anywhere in the movie. And Stan Lee made a cameo. Seriously?? It could have been so simple. The antique shop that fronted the lab where Steve Rogers became Captain America could have been called Simon & Kirby's. Perfect. I have a feeling that the lawsuits from the Kirby family may have had something to do with it, but to leave out Joe Simon?? Shameful. At least Joe is featured on the bonus material on the DVD.

I loved this Captain America suit! So much that I thought the Avengers version really paled in comparison. My only nit-pick was that there was no red stripe below the star. Well, there is in mine.

Sing with me now. "When Captain America Throws His Mighty Shield........."


Thursday, February 20, 2014


...or "You Can't Take the Sky from Me". Several months ago I posted about a Captain Mal painting and how I initially painted it and then how it was revised. So now it is revised again. This time by adding a new background and the entire cast of the show. It's very much a challenge to incorporate so many portraits into a single piece and within the parameters of what I can get printed. After much deliberation and sketching, I came upon this idea which I think also really keeps the spirit of the show. Torn parchment and outer space! A classic combo like chocolate and peanut butter. Mmmmmm.......peanut butter......

Monday, February 17, 2014

Keeping up with the Joneses!

Well one of them at least. I have always been a HUGE Indiana Jones fan! Fair warning, I am about to ramble. Way back when Raiders was first released to theaters, my mom, brother and I were visiting Florida from New Jersey. Mom had a close friend who had children around the same ages as my brother and I so it was cool as we all got along well. So one night we kids decide to go out to the movies on our own. The older kids decide to get some beer and then go see a Cheech and Chong movie. We, of course, could not tell our parents that we snuck into an R-rated movie so we had to lie about what movie we went to. We actually bought tickets to Raiders of the Lost Ark so we used that as our cover. Nobody knew anything about the movie and to avoid talking about it, we all said it was not very good and that we didn't like it. This came to really burn me when it turned out to be a huge hit like Star Wars and then I just had to go see it for real. Don't lie kids. It can cost you from seeing Indiana Jones! Of course I wound up seeing the movie for real and all the sequels and fell in love with the character. I even loved the Marvel comics series! If I were a rich man, I would have a Hot Toys Indiana Jones figure in my room! You get the picture.

So I recently went to New Orleans (as you may recall) and on the drive up, we watched some movies in the car. One of the offerings that I brought along was Raiders, but a converted file made to be black and white. I read a story online a few years back about certain movies that looked better that way. I don't know if it's better, but it is really cool and if you have the means, I suggest giving it a view. I did pump up the contrast a bit when I converted mine to get true blacks instead of just grays and to give it more of a noir feel. So we get back from the show and Danny Haas decides to do an Indiana Jones piece! You might remember that the same Mr. Haas twisted my arm to do The Rocketeer not too long ago. I was fine with him doing it and looked forward to it as well, but then he asked me for some input and after cutting and pasting his picture (per his request, I don't make a habit of cutting and pasting other artists works) I found myself wanting my own picture of Indiana Jones! Or maybe I just wanted something to trade with Danny for one of his. Who knows.

So then I was faced with a new dilemma. How to paint it. Do I use the cartoony style or the Struzan-esqe look I have been employing of late? Both had their pros and cons. If I went with cartoon, I didn't think I could top what Patrick Schoenmaker is doing with Indy. On the other had, NOBODY can top Struzan painting him either. Oh well. I went with the realistic version because it was faster. I always tell you that I am lazy.

So here he is. My version of Indiana Jones.


Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Packing for Wizard World New Orleans!!

Just dropped off my stuff to be packed into the vehicle we are taking to New Orleans! If you are in the area, please stop by and say "hi"! Please be forward as I am a shy individual. Should be a fun show!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Peter Capaldi IS The Doctor!!

I always get a little worried when a new Doctor is announced. And excited. It's the nature of the show. I must admit that I was a bit concerned when Peter Capaldi was announced as the successor to Matt Smith and I fully admit that it was his age that initially caught me off guard. I think I just always had a tendency towards younger Doctors as Peter Davison was my first. I was won over tho. Plus I never quite understood why so many people were vocal about his age being a factor and many of the same people loved when Paul McGann re-appeared as the Doctor in the minisode before the 50th anniversary. He is only one year younger than Capaldi. Well enough about that. I did say that I was won over and then I was even more keen on the new Doctor when his costume was revealed. I like it. I like it a lot! Some have compared it to a "less frilly Pertwee". I can agree with that. I am anxiously awaiting the new episodes like all the whovians out there and I hate that it is such a long wait but I have no control over that. Now as far as my piece goes, I know that everyone has seen the promo shot of Capaldi in his costume a zillion times, but I thought it was such a great pose!! I knew I had to keep it. I did make my own Clara for this one tho.

This is not the rough sketch made for this piece. This is the final drawing that I went back into with more details and embellishments as a test for an upcoming picture. I think it looks pretty cool.