Summit City Ink Sketch Challenge

This week's sketch challenge is the Elephantmen!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Jesus: Earth's Mightiest Messiah!

So Kevin had this week’s pick and while I think it’s going to be a lot of fun, it also has the potential to be a bit inflammatory. But, who cares? Art is supposed to make you feel something—even if it’s hatred or anger. And, while I certainly respect people who are genuinely religious, I am not a religious man. So a goof on ancient mythology sounded fun to me anyway.

I also thought this was a perfect time to step a bit outside of the box, both in how I looked at the subject and how I approached my piece. (As an aside, isn’t funny how I as a writer am getting REALLY into the process and thought behind each of my rather mediocre pieces?)

A little background on why I decided to draw Jesus, the Messiah, the way that I did: About a year ago, I left a voice mail for the 11 O’Clock Comics podcast where I impersonated Stan Lee. In the voice mail I, as Stan, made the outrageous claim that Stan had invented Jesus as a goof on how Stan will flat out steal any credit that’s not nailed down. As part of the story, I described how Jack Kirby had done the original, but ultimately rejected, design for Jesus.

So thinking back to that rather infamous moment, and thinking about this piece, I decided to visualize what Jack’s Jesus may have looked like. What you see above is the result. In true Kirby fashion, there is a great big “J” on the belt buckle. As most Kirby fans know, Kirby-designed heroes are often not complete without their first initial somewhere on their costume. I sorta tried to mix some of my favorite Kirby costume elements, and it ends up being part Eternal, part Galactus, part New God. 

The piece was done in pencil and then inked with a Pentel Color Brush. I filled in some of the larger black areas with a marker and colored it digitally. Incidentally, this the first time I’ve colored anything digitally. I am surprisingly pleased with how it turned out. I tried letter it with "Jesus: Earth's Mightiest Messiah," but I just couldn't get it to turn out quite the way I wanted to, so I dropped it.

Also, my apologies to Tom Scioli, whom I pantently stole this character pose from. I swiped the pose from one that he used for Adam Archer in issue #14 of Godland. I love Tom's art and hopefully the look I was going for is an appropriate homage to him and Jack.

If you are interested in hearing the episode of 11 O’Clock where I called in as Stan, you can find it here: 11 O’Clock Comics: Episode 110

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