Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Captain Kirk/ArtRage 3

I could have gone either way with the title on this one. Many of you know that I am quite a fan of a program called ArtRage and that I have been anxiously awaiting the newest version to be released. Well, the day finally arrived and I was able to get my hands on it late last night but I had to wait until tonight to start playing with it. I am still finding my way around the changed keys and new tools but I did manage to paint a picture rather quickly that I am VERY pleased with. The oil brushes are so much better as is the canvas selections and the blending tool is AWESOME. I basically stuck with what I knew on this but with much better results. Go get ArtRage 3!! It will set you back a whopping $80.00!! I can't wait to try the watercolor brushes!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Ninth Doctor - Chris Eccleston

I still remember the day I read the news that Doctor Who was coming back to TV. I was floored. I immediately thought of how long it would take for it to be shown on American shores! Then I saw leaked pics of the "new Doctor". I was not happy. He looked like Fonzie with a short hair cut. What were they thinking?? What are they doing to my show??? I should not have worried. By the end of the first episode I was sold on this new take on the Doctor. Nothing was thrown out. No "re-imagining". Just Doctor Who as he should be. After the second episode, I was totally hooked on Eccleston as the Doctor. He was great. He was brilliant. He was............FAN-TASTIC!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Eighth Doctor - Paul McGann

I have to admit a guilty pleasure among hard-care whovians, I like the 1996 TV movie. It's not perfect and after reading the book made about the production, it's a miracle it was even made at all. Now I don't like everything about it but to me, Paul McGann was PERFECT in his first (and only) outing as the Doctor! Usually it takes a few stories for an actor to "settle in", but that does not seem the case here. To add to the brilliant casting of the Doctor, is the inspired re-design of the TARDIS interior! For the first time it really did seem infinite and lived in. Now matter what you think of the movie, I firmly believe that the new, current series could not have been made without this happening first. So there!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Insomnia painting

So I have been up since 3:20, wide awake for some unknown reason. Was digging around the ArtRage site getting anxious for version 3 to be released (you need to go and check it out. It's gonna blow your mind!!) and I discovered some people doing work with just the roller brush since a squared off oil brush is not available (yet!). I was inspired enough to open the program and try my hand with it. I like it!

...but that opinion may change after some sleep.

Friday, November 13, 2009

The Seventh Doctor - Sylvester McCoy

I knew this one would be fun to draw. With a very expressive face and a fun hat! I admit that I didn't follow his outfit that he wore on the series from 1987-1989. I followed the one he briefly wore in the 1996 television movie just before regenerating into the Eighth Doctor. Purists may balk, but hey, Sylvester himself admitted he liked the movie outfit better as well. It has the same basic shape just made with better fabrics and WITHOUT that ridiculous sweater! It was covered in question marks for cryin' out loud!! I know, I know. How can I pick on the sweater after enduring the outfit worn by the Sixth Doctor. At least his didn't have question marks all over it. What the heck were they thinking???? If you still want the question marks,.........look really hard at the vest and hat band.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Sixth Doctor - Colin Baker

This one was tough! What a suit!! I don't really know what to say about this doctor. I remember being excited that I would get to watch my first regeneration from one actor to the next but then.............I don't know. For a while I felt he was my favorite doctor but as I grew older my opinions change, as they do, and I started to really dislike this era. I think I am on the fence still. I know about all the drama that was going on behind the scenes now and I know that really affected the program and I totally love how Colin Baker STILL is enthusiastic about he program even tho he was fired from the role he loved. So that's it. Here is the Sixth Doctor in all his,, ..........glory??

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Fifth Doctor - Peter Davison

This one was really tough and I am waiting for someone to call me out that I may NOT have really caught Peter Davison's likeness. I think part of that is that Mr. Davison really has no outright distinctive features. No big nose, large eyes, curly hair, .....none of that! Plus he was only 29 when he started playing the part and doesn't even have wrinkles! I think the other part was that Peter Davison was MY doctor. They say you always remember the actor in the role when you find the program to be the one you remember the most, and he was mine. I was in high school and I was introduced to the show by my close friend, John Larkin. I never looked back. I was drawn in and I loved it. I wish I could talk to John about the program now that it is back on television. He probably will never even see this blog let alone contact me. Regardless, this one is for you John.

Here is my preliminary sketch all done on my touchscreen in ArtRage.

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Fourth Doctor - Tom Baker

I know this may be the most popular of the series which is kinda daunting looking forward. Maybe David Tennant will make up for it. Who knows. Pun intended! This one was a lot of fun and came about very quickly. This illustration also marks my first with my new computer (Thank you Wayne!!!). While it is not a pressure sensitive Cintique(?), it is a touch screen and I was able to actually do the "painting" parts using a real paintbrush right on the screen!! I even did the rough demo for this one on this from drawing to painting all with a real brush in my hand. You can see that one posted as well as that marks my very first "art" made with my new toy. I really hope you all like this one. Jelly baby anyone???

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Another cereal box painting

So I have a stack of cut up cereal boxes covered in gesso waiting for me to try things out. Here is my second one of those. After my disappointment over my last post, I decided to dedicate a bit more time with the drawing of the figure first before painting. A novel idea, I know. I actually like the drawing of this one and the painting for the most part. Just wish I centered the figure better and killed some negative space more. The colors didn't really scan correctly either, the original looks better (color wise) than what you are seeing here.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Quick (...and crappy) Paint Test

I know it's a piece of crap, but I learned something here. I have a clear course of how to approach my next painting. From drawing to painting. Something to be said for that ya know. So, since this is a warts and all type blog, I feel obliged to share my failures as well. I actually painted this all in acrylic on the back of a piece of gessoed cereal box!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Cup of Joe

That's what Tim Rogerson called it at least. I did this on top of an old canvas just to paint something really. I am still on the fence with it even tho many people tell me they like it. Hmmmmmmmm.........

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Playing with paint

I found a big piece of illustration board with an old drawing on it that was not worth keeping. I decided it would make a good support for experimenting with some paint. I gessoed over it all and then did two quick "paintings". On the left of the board I did a quick Mickey Mouse all in acrylic and then some colored pencil on top. I kinda like the look of that one. On the right of the board, I drew this dapper fellow with a sharpie and then laid an acrylic wash over him as an underpainting and then airbrushed some color and then applied colored pencil. I really didn't like this one and you can see I only concentrated on the face and didn't add anything beyond the washes to anything else. Got it out of my system tho.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Autodesk Sketchbook Mobile

Got the new Sketchbook Mobile app for my iPhone and have been playing with it. I really like it. For those Brushes users out there, you may want to check it out. I totally love how I can draw in this app. The pencil is so much better than the one in Brushes. I have to admit, that even tho both apps let you paint with layers, there is no layer opacity mode for Sketchbook. I hope this is added in an update because I seriously believe that is all it needs. I have not produced any great works of art on it (or ANYWHERE for that matter) but I have used it in lieu of a sketchbook on many occasions to even just jot down an idea or thumbnail to use later on. Here are some odds and ends.

Here is a quick sketch of Joe taking a nap.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Doctor 3.2

Just foolin' around with some illustrator brushes and such the other night and toyed with the inked version of Pertwee. Just playing really.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Third Doctor - Jon Pertwee

Didn't mean to take so long to finish this one. Not that this one took longer than the previous two but just finding the time to sit and do it! This one was fun tho. More color than One and Two and getting the jacket to have a velvet look was cool. I think it looks like velvet anyway. He was not my favorite Doctor but I do appreciate all he brought to the series and he did, in my opinion, spell his name a cool way!

Friday, September 18, 2009


Out of the blue a few days ago, I thought "how can I do an illustration REALLY fast?" I came up with this simple method. I kinda like it. I like the expediency of it to be sure and the fact that is it 90% vector art. All I did was make a quick pencil sketch, ink it by hand, scan, vector trace and paint in Illustrator. Done! Took about 90 minutes each from concept to finish.

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Second Doctor - Patrick Troughton

Here is the finished version of the 2nd actor to play the Doctor on Doctor Who. Glad to have it finished and still in love with the process but I am wondering if I actually like the sketch better on this one. Hmmmmmm......

Update 5/1/11: Yeah. The sketch was better. Lost too much so I finally redrew the whole thing.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Pan's the Man

Finally painted and it's finally dry. I had this on my easel for almost a year it seems since paintings seemed to stop selling at the Disney Galleries. Right after I found out that I had actully sold the last one I had on property I began to paint again. Was nice too. I really enjoyed it. I really wish the scan of the finished painting looked as good as the original tho. It doesn't come close!! This one will be hard to give up since Pan is my favorite but you all know I need the money so I hope it goes quick. I managed to take pics of it with my iPhone while I was painting. Didn't really mean to track its progress but that is what I would up with. Just wish I had the underpainting and the background only stages captured as well, but I don't. Oh well. The final is 18 x 24, oil on canvas. Enjoy.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Glory Days

As I wait for my newest painting to dry in order to scan it in (and then hopefully sell!), I thought I would go back and re-explore a painting that I am not allowed (to date) sell. Mr. Incredible. I can't remember why I went ahead and painted it since I think I knew I could not get Pixar approval to sell it at Disney. I think I just really wanted to paint it for myself. I thought that you don't see enough of Mr. Incredible in his glory days, and I did like the blue suit better than the generic red one. I thought this is something you would find in his room of memorabilia. I am still very happy with the result and when I was just looking it over I found a preliminary drawing I had rolled up and slipped into the canvas frame. I have no memory of doing that and that is something I don't make a habit of but it was fun to see. I have included that one here as well. Enjoy!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Chris Eccleston

I had forgotten I had done this. And I think I have it on my website!! I tinkered with it a bit. I like the look of it now as drawn on grey paper with highlights add to it. Did the original drawing in my sketchbook a few years back but the additions were done in ArtRage.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The First Doctor - William Hartnell

Ok, so I took a break from breaking down the book I am working on to finish this one. I honestly didn't have much left to do. I like it and I hope you do too. I am really getting the hang of this method although I am still tinkering here and there. I left the painting parts more "painterly" in this one and I like that and hope to keep growing in that aspect of it. Let me know what you think.

8/21/09 UPDATE: Got a fair crit from my friend Jan so I slightly lowered the contrast in the sweater and removed some of the white from it as well. I am leaving the shirt stark white since, style wise, I decided that I would almost always leave it that way.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Miss Mindy Marshall

This is a post that I hope will continue to motivate me. I am a HUGE procrastinator and I often need a nudge to keep me going or have a deadline or goal to keep me focused. Yesterday I painted this pic of Miss Mindy Marshall for a book that I hope to complete. I have never attempted, let alone finished a book before but I figure anything is worth a shot right now and I REALLY like the story for it. Good thoughts everyone!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Doctor doodles

I decided I was going to do a pic of every actor to date who played Doctor Who in my new look. I am still thinking about how I want to show them. Do I want one pic each or do I do them all and compose them in a single image?? I don't know. Maybe both. You will just have to wait and see. Just for fun and to have something to post, I thought I would preview my first three sketches and with some b/w painting. All the painting was done in ArtRage and two of the three drawings as well. I was actually worried about showing them because I thought that the finished, full colored ones may not turn out as good. I think these have a certain charm to them and am anxious about moving on. I will tho. Promise.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

The Dynamic Duo

I figured I would test drive my "new look" with some superheros. I normally would have just gone with Superman but for some reason I wanted to draw Batman and Robin. Who really knows why. This one took a bit longer to do but that might have something to do with having two figures and a backdrop as well. Plus my father in-law visiting and taking time off to have loads of fun! Anyway, the process still went rather smoothly and I am still really pleased with the results. Hope you all diggs!

Here is the progression.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Another me

I could NOT sleep last night. I got up not to disturb my wife (Mindy. See hon, I can refer to you by name. :) ) and went to my studio figuring I would draw until I got tired and then lay down on the sofa. No such luck. I would up drawing, inking, painting and uploading my new face in several areas. I would write more but it's just about time to wake Mindy (See! Two times!!). Good morning everyone.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Duke

As I stated in my last post, I set out to try this new look of mine but with the added aspect of trying to keep a likeness as well. I am more or less pleased with the likeness and very happy with it as a piece all around. I may be biased tho since lately, nobody seems to be liking my work. I know times are tough and I need to keep things in perspective but I feel a bit beat up of late. I know rejection is a big part of being an artist, but I am going thru a LOT of it lately. Maybe I shouldn't be venting about such things here but I do find a cathardic relief sometimes from just writing stream of conscious style. Things sure seemed a lot clearer and easier in a John Wayne movie!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

All Coming together

During a recent online search of artist representation, I came across,I believe, a British artist whose style really caught my eye. I looked it over for quite some time but I didn't save the name or image because I did not want to start directly copying his look. That was several weeks ago and finally last night I drew a quick sketch that I thought would be good for me to emulate based on what I remembered of it. I was drawn to it because it collected all the things that I like to use in my pics. Only I have been bouncing from one style to the next and one program to the next in utilizing a particular style. In this, I decided to use what I liked from each program and combine them. Genius eh? Well, I never made claims to be smart! The sketch was actually done by hand ( I am not adverse to using the computer but I really wanted the control I can only get by hand.), then scanned in and inked in Illustrator and really working the thick and thins. All the flat colors were done in Illustrator as well. Then I opened it in Photoshop keeping the separate layers and re-saved it as a .psd. Then I opened it in ArtRage to render the parts that I wanted to have a painterly feel. I did every part separate so I could easily cut away the excess back in PS later. ArtRage does not allow you to do this unless you create stencils and that would take too many layers and too much time. It may look ugly at this stage but that's cool. Then I re-exported a new Photoshop document from ArtRage and cleaned up the paint, adjusted colors and added some textures and the cup and saucer. I feel like I really played my strengths on this one and I am quite pleased with the results. I am eager to try my hand at this again and try to do a likeness of someone and see how that turns out. It may crash and burn but unless you try to fly you won't find out!

The Sketch:

The Ink:

The Paint:

The Final:

Monday, July 6, 2009

Man From Atlantis!

Here we go again. Yes, it's another trip down memory lane for Jon. Before he was Bobby Ewing and re-appearing in a shower as the worst sub-plot in television history, Patrick Duffy was a water breathing crime fighter for one season of "Man From Atlantis". There was even a Marvel comic adaptation of the series that I recall reading as well. I don't really remember which came first for me. It was really my older brothers comic and he "let me" read it on occasion. The show was very much a formula. Duffy was the last citizen of Atlantis, or so we thought since he also had amnesia, who washed up on shore after a storm. He is found and rescued and when it's discovered he has gills and can swim deeper than a submarine, he is used by the government for covert operations. What's not to love??? The great Victor Buono (King Tut in the old Adam West TV Batman show as well as recurring roles on Wild, Wild West) played Mr. Shubert, a former junk collector turned would-be world conqueror. I actually have a "borrowed" copy of the pilot on DVD and it's watchable and I am sure there are clips and such on YouTube if you are so inclined. A simple google search found me many treasures including an awesome TV Guide cover painting back when TV Guide covers occasionally had awesome artwork! I almost didn't want to post it since it's cooler than my pic!

There was even to be a Man From Atlantis toy line that was in the works but scrapped since the show was cancelled so quickly. Darn it!

This one is another Illustrator pic. Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


So I finally broke down and let my wife buy me an iPhone. What can I say, I love it! It lets me be a little less tied down to my office in case I get an email for freelance work rather than the phone call. I think the iPhone can handle the call too. I can also carry a portfolio on it and even do some painting while I am bored in the car or wherever. I have seen this app on my friends iPhone and it was one of the first purchases I made when I got mine. I simply played with it trying out the tools and getting myself a "feel" for it for a few weeks and then finally I made a real picture with it. Fruit. Artists always start with fruit for some reason. I just thought that is was a simple enough shape to work with and start off before trying things of a more challenging nature. Hmmmm, maybe that is why artists always start with fruit. You think that they would have explained that better in art school! Someone actually used this app to paint the cover of the New Yorker just recently! How awesome is that!? So here is my iPhone fruit!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

What's your Vector Captain Action!?

I had heard of Captain Action most of my life yet knew almost nothing about him. I mostly saw ads for the toy in old comic books but knew that they didn't make him anymore by the time I read those issues. I even saw an issue or two of the old DC comic that had some great Gil Kane artwork in it. Several years ago I started to hear this and that regarding the character in that someone was trying to revive him and make new toys and such. Then, just recently, I got one of those mailers from my high-school to keep graduates up to date with goings on and such at the ol' place. I usually just glance at it and skip right to my graduation year to see if anyone I knew has done anything interesting. For some reason I read the whole thing this time. Must have been a night with no baseball on! Anyway, while reading about past graduates, I come across a name and I read that a fellow graduate (a few years older than I, I must add.) now owns the copyright to Captain Action and has been trying to revive him. I recognized the name from the other comic newsletters and magazines I read. Wow! I guess that sparked my interest to examine him further. I was also inspired to draw a pic of the good Captain.

At first I was simply content to follow the same path artistically has I had with my Planet of the Apes piece not too long ago. I got a basic pose I liked and set to work. When I had him scanned, digitally traced and ready for detail, I initially thought that it might be fun to fully render him out in Photoshop from that point on. I started the process and then stopped about two hours in thinking it was a mistake and I should just go back to my original plan. So the next night I went back to Illustrator and started over. As I was working tho, I decided I would at least push myself to see how far I could render him in just Illustrator. Was a good time to do things I could not do since I really came to know the program making t-shirts. One tool in particular, I had never gotten an understanding for: gradient mesh! It took me longer than I thought it would but I am very pleased with the results in knowing that IT WAS ALL DONE IN ILLUSTRATOR. I don't know if I would do it again like this. I mean, some of it would have been SO much faster in Photoshop, but I do like the fact that it is all a vector drawing.

Here I posted both the finished piece and the progression that the figure took from sketch, digital inking, refined ink with color fill and the final painting. Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Ghosts of Photoshop's Past

When I was in art school, they had not yet embraced the coming digital age. Thus, most of my education was focused on traditional media. My class had one half-semester of "digital illustration" where they tried to show us how to use Illustrator. It might have been version 3! Having never seen computers like this before, I was lost. There was no textbook and if I tried to keep notes I would not be able to see the teacher using a plethora of shortcut keys. I did not take to it well. Then, just before graduation, someone showed me the key basics of Photoshop. I was thrilled that I could scan in drawing and compose pages for a portfolio and not spend countless hours and money at Kinko's cutting and pasting and copying! Those were the days!! Then I started dabbling in making a picture right in Photoshop. Of course we had no wacom tablets then and drawing with a mouse was a no-go. I settled with scanning a drawing from my sketchbook and simply coloring it. Digital glazing I called it then since all I knew how to do was put down color and lower the opacity and repeat the steps until the picture was fully colored. Took me a long time too! The results seem to have been worth it tho since the fruits of that labor garnered me an entry into the Best of Ringling and a showing at the Society of Illustrators in New York for an illustration publication whose name escapes me now. Was fun and I was on my way towards a digital future. On a side note, I found it striking that when I graduated, I had two digital pieces that I would point out to interviewing employers and then years later when I returned to be the recruiter, the students were pointing out the one or two traditional pieces that were in their portfolio.

Now recently being "pushed" into the freelance game, I have noticed that most everyone asks for a "consistent style". I, of course, have been more of a chameleon most of my career and it had served me well. Now, thinking I need to focus in, decided to re-visit some old pieces that no longer resemble any way in which I work now and revamp them to be more uniform. The first was,.......the first. I felt a little weird re-doing this piece but I also found it fitting that it should be the initial piece tackled. Now, I find nothing wrong with it still, it's really just the matter that I don't draw like this and I don't work like this anymore. Nor do I wish too. The original took me several days if not a week if I remember correctly. It was not eight hours a day for a week straight, but more like an hour or two here and there but about a week nonetheless. The revamp took about five hours straight. I hope you like it or can at least appreciate my thoughts on it.

Here is the original:

...and the new version.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Sampson (or is it Hercules??)

This was just a doodle in my sketch pad that was not even finished. I kinda liked how it looked so I scanned it in and began to play around with it in ArtRage. I cloned his arm to make two and pasted it all together and then just painted it quickly. A posting on the ArtRage forum had the background texture, so I downloaded it and threw it in there. Then I figured that I could just add all the little doodles from the sketchbook to go with it. Kinda makes up for the boring composition. No? Well who cares, it's just a sketch!!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Some doodles

I figured that I have not posted any new art in some time so I thought to rectify that. Kinda. This may not be entirely new but you have not seen them before. I simply went thru my sketchbook and compiled a page of sketches. Some of which you may recognize as early drafts of what when into pieces that have already been posted and some are of ones still yet to come. New stuff is on the way soon. Promise!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The One and Only George Perez

Sorry for the long delay. Being a person of regular routine and being thrust into the world of freelance illustration without warning, it has taken me some time to settle down. Actually, I should clarify that statement to read, "I have not yet found my freelance routine." Well, whatever! So far some work has been coming my way and I have even gotten paid!

Enough about that. I have been meaning to sit down and write this entry to my blog for some time but I have kept shrugging it off. Seems so overwhelming for me. And why not? Who among you out there in cyber land can admit absolute calm and maintain your composure when dealing with one of your heroes?? No, I am not talking about Superman, but one of the few people out there that have had the pleasure to bring him to life on actual comic pages!! When I was a wee lad in New Jersey and pouring over stacks of comic books my brother and I kept in our closet, the first artist that I could ever recognize just by looking at his drawings was George Perez. This is back in the day when he was working on Fantastic Four and the Avengers. The first time. The 1970's for crying out loud! I loved his stuff. I wondered why his drawings were so much better than other comics with the same characters. I studied how he did things and I decided I wanted to be an artist like him! Now, in previous posts you can see that I did have a large "Perez Influence" in my work, but I could never attain his level of greatness. I kept following his work and I was on top of the world in the early 80's when George was king and doing the top selling book "The New Teen Titans". Basically, if George drew it; I bought it! I even kept drawing enough to get myself into art school.

While in art school, my friends and I would rent a van down in Sarasota, Florida, and drive non-stop to my mothers house in Jersey so we could attend the New York Comic Con. This one particular year, George Perez was slated to be there. I brought some favourites for him to sign, and stood in line waiting to meet him for the first time. When my turn finally came, I became so tongue tied that the most I could utter was something to the effect of "your my hero" and handed him the books to sign. My friends doubled over laughing and I heard about it ever since. I blew it.

Ten years later I am wandering an Orlando based convention with my friend Tim Rogerson. We went to see our co-worker who had a table set up for his work and we visited with the table housing our Alma mater. We also got some stuff signed by Darwyn Cooke and chatted with him for a bit as well. Very nice guy and very talented. If you have not read New Frontier, go do it now. Anyway, as we meandered about I stopped short when I spotted none other than George Perez at a table drawing. Alone. I figured he must have just gotten there and no body knew he was available yet. I quickly thought of my past encounter and that God has given me a chance to redeem myself and with Tim as my witness. I rationalized that I was now a working professional artist as well and should have no problem talking to him. I made a beeline for his table, stuck out my hand to shake his and blurted out, "Your my hero." Again. He was polite, shook my hand and I basically whimpered off with Tim laughing hysterically at me. I was now two for two.

Just recently, while my Mom was here visiting, I went down to my local comic shop in Clermont, Florida. A real local place. Small and "old townie". I actually like it alot but not much ever happens in Clermont. Well this particular day I went in with my mom and picked up my books. While checking out I spot the notice that they are having an event later in the month with none other than George Perez!! What the.....??? Here??? How??? Turns out that George lives not too far away and is really big in theatre and Clermont happens to have a local theatre group where he was going to be performing "Lil Abner" and he arranged a signing event to raise money for the theater company!! And for only $50 I could get him to draw me anything I wanted!!! I plopped down my money and was giddy for days thinking about what he should draw for me. When the day finally arrived, I brought with me a collection of b/w plates of comic cover art he had released back in 1990. 12 in all. I figured maybe he would sign my favorite one as well as get my sketch. I entered and there he was. Just sitting at a back table chatting with the locals and drawing away. I stood back and chatted with the owners for a bit while I gathered my nerves. I was almost shaking. I finally made my way over and introduced myself and told him that I already made an ass of myself twice in his presence and I was here for the trifecta! He laughed and I managed to make small talk long enough to start to feel comfortable with him. So much so that when others were gathered and I asked George what he would be working on next professionally, he told us that there were three things offered by DC and he accepted two of them but could not tell us what they were. So I asked what was the one he turned down. He told us that he turned down the opportunity to write Teen Titans and explained why he did so. While then talking about Teen Titans and how the anniversary is coming up and how DC wanted to cash in on all of this I posed another question to him. He actually stared at me for a moment and then smiled at me and revealed to everyone that what I asked him was exactly what he would be working on. I am purposely being vague about what that is because it is not official yet and his partner in it does not even know that George has agreed to finish this project (there's your hint.). Wow! Then I even got to just stand there and talk to George as he drew a head shot of Orion of Kirbys New Gods for me. And those b/w plates I brought with me? He signed ALL of them. 12! And the cover!! What can I say, I finally, actually spoke with one of my biggest heroes and influences. I asked him questions, he answered and he even asked about my work. He was the nicest man and very generous.

Here is the sketch and some pics.