Wednesday, January 26, 2011

For your consideration, Mr. Lee and Mr. McFarlane

A few years ago when I had one of my dalliances with art, a friend of mine, who is a very talented writer, and I hashed out some ideas for a graphic novel. I even did a couple character sketches for him. But like most things I worked on back then, it sort of fizzled out. However, that was the past. Now there is a new and improved me (Me 2.0) who wants to follow through on projects and actually finish something.
This is the original character sketch
I did for one of the characters, Grim

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote to him and said I was hungry for a project...FEED ME! I asked him if he would be willing to work with me again on the graphic novel we came up with. That night he sent me a script. I am probably driving him crazy as of late because I send him concept art almost everyday. It sounds crazy but I think I am now addicted to drawing. When I am not drawing, I think about drawing. Everything I see, I think about how it would look on paper. 

While working on some character designs, I came across this art contest ad sponsored by the immortal Stan Lee and Todd McFarlane (creator of Spawn), which they would like to see submissions for new superheroes.  The winner gets to a trip to San Diego Comic-Con to meet Stan Lee and accept an award and more importantly, the winner also gets to take a trip to Todd McFarlane's studio in Arizona to sit with him and talk art and learn a few things. Another cool prize is that a limited run of action figures will be made of the winning character. How freakin' sweet is that???

Needless to say I was just a little excited about this and immediately began working on some new character pages. I will say that coming up with a design worthy to submit has been a challenge. However, its has been an extremely rewarding experience. I can't believe how quickly and creatively I am working. What normally would take me days to complete, I can design, draw, and ink (both pen and brush) a full 11x17 page in about 5 hours.I have been through several iterations of the character layouts the past few days and am having trouble figuring out which layouts works best. So I need your help dear reader(s). Please take a look at the 3 drawings below of the main characters of our novel, Smiley and Grim, and vote which one is best as well as give me any constructive feedback. Just put the number you like along with your feedback in the comments for this blog entry. I want to get this right because I am not only a perfectionist but I really want to win this contest...It's an amazing opportunity. Thanks!!
Smiley and Grim #1
Smiley and Grim #2
Smiley and Grim #3


  1. #3. I really like the other two as well, but I think the perspective on Grimm is a bit off on those. Almost like his left shoulder should be a bit further back.

    Good luck! Let me know if they need a wonderdog sidekick.

  2. Agreed! Thanks for the feedback. If a wonderdog is needed, you're first on the list!

  3. #3 is super sweet. I like how in that picture they both look extra fierce. I think Grimm stands out as the fierce one in the other two, and that ain't right.

    Scott. You are the MAN!

  4. I'd say #3, too--best proportion and perspective. Funny. Aren't you a big guy with a little girl?

    --By a big guy with a little girl.

  5. I like #2 the best.

    Smiley has a nice look of motion to her, similar to #3. But in #3 it looks like she's leaning a bit off to the side, as though she's off-balance. Plus, her face looks a bit better in #2--like there's a greater intensity to it.

    As for Grim, in #3 (and to a lesser extent in #1 and #2), it looks like he has rubber bands around the joints on his arms. On #3, it also looks like his deltoids (the shoulder muscles) are a little too protuberant. They look like removable arms from really bad horror movies or old Micronaut toys. On #2 I don't see that quite as much, though I would look at how the deltoids join the biceps and the trapezius.

    And good for you for getting inspired again. I was just starting to get there myself, and now it's time to go back to school.

  6. Awesome input, Dave! I will definitely take into consideration on my final draft. Thanks!

  7. I like #3 the best but I like the girl better in #1 (except that the smoke from the gun makes her look like she's holding a ribbon in rhythmic gymnastics). She looks much more feminine in #1 and its hard to see this in the positions she's in from #2 and #3.

    I also think the big guy should be named Smiley :-)