Summit City Ink Sketch Challenge

This week's sketch challenge is the Elephantmen!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

I Yam Wut I Yam

Oh my, did I watch a lot of Popeye as a kid! And, Oh, Boy! Did I wait for something awesome to happen every time I ate some nasty ol' spinach. I think my problem was that mom never gave us frozen spinach. I don't think Popeye's powers come from the fresh stuff.

I'm strong to tha finach cuz I eats me spinach

POPEYE! I was so excited when I saw Andy Jewett picked this for our latest sketch challenge subject as Andy and I have a shared love of E.C. Segar's amazing creation, Popeye. 

Like most people my age, and those that are a bit older too, for YEARS my only exposure to the character was through the Paramount cartoons, and the Robin Williams/Shelly Duvall movie--the Fleischer Studios episodes obviously being the greatest of them. Even at a young age, I rejected the later episodes in favor of the Fleischer cartoons. The later ones were passable, but not even in the same plane of existence as the Fleischer cartoons.  Later in life (my late teens/early 20s), I discovered the Segar's original newspaper strips and fell in love all over again. I even think I have a pretty decent Popeye impression.

This offering features two of my favorite Popeye characters: Popeye and Goon. I wanted to fit Wimpy in there, but then thought I would save it for a later piece. Although, if I'm being honest, Wimpy is my favorite Segar character...but I digress. 

The piece above is my favorite of the four I posted today. I don't know if the action is perfectly clear, but I am satisfied with it for now and there are NO direct swipes in this one. Just looking at how Segar presented his characters and trying to emulate him. I'm definitely more pleased with the color in this one than I am in most of the others, but I think that has a long way to go yet too.

Anyway, I hope you dig it! I had a blast drawing it!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Meep Meep...

So I kinda got to thinking about this subject and wondered what the Road Runner sees when he gobbles up all of that bird seed that the Coyote leaves out for him and I came to the quick determination that it works like catnip or PCP. 

Then I started wondering what terrifying delusions and nightmarish Hells he encounters when he's whacked out on seed. This is what I came up with. It's very Steve Ditko inspired and I'm sure you can spot the figure that I swiped directly from one of Ditko's early Charlton sci-fi books. (Incidentally, it's from Ditko's rendition of Rumpelstiltskin in issue #14 of THING!)

I dunno. I had a lot of fun with this piece. There are a lot of things that I would have liked to have done better, but despite it's flaws I just kind of cut loose on this one and, overall, I'm pleased with it. I'm also getting much more comfortable with the coloring. I'm getting close to the look that I want, but I'm not quite there yet.

Got any cheese? Good, because I have no parents and I am malnourished.

This was a fun one. It's not a particularly great piece from me, but I think it's funny. For whatever reason giving Urkel a bleak, sort of hopelessness is funny to me. Maybe I'm a weirdo. 

I did this one in Sharpie and then colored it in Photoshop. I used the same coloring process as I did for the Papa Smurf, but I don't think it turned out quite as well. Not bad, just not as good as before. I think it's mostly to do with the fact that I have no confidence in my ability to color--still learning and whathaveyou. 

Anywho, I hope you think it's as funny as I do.

I'ma smurf the smurfin' smurf outta that Smurf

The Smurfs was a BIG part of my cartoon routine as a kid. By no stretch of the imagination were they a favorite of mine, but I did enjoy the show and I had plenty of Smurf toys, Smurf sheets, and a stuffed Papa Smurf that survived 25 years until it was, ahem, mistakenly given to my dog as a chew toy.

I've mentioned this before, but you'll notice that a lot of my contributions to the sketch challenge will be swipes. Of course, I'm drawing them myself; but I'm still re-learning how to cartoon. So, while I try (mostly in vain) to re-learn anatomy and composition, swiping poses for these characters really helps. I make no excuses, and want to be as upfront as possible about it.

My Papa Smurf  is based (swiped) from a pretty popular image of the character that, I believe, is by Peyo. But, the addition of Gargamel to the pot was my idea, and I thought it was funny. I penciled the piece and then used an ink brush for the finishes. I've also been fooling around with digital coloring and trying to find a style that suits the way I draw and I am comfortable working with. I don't know that I was successful with that here, but I am satisfied with the result (at least for now). 

I Yam What I Yam

The one-eyed sailor has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember... I was introduced to the character as a cartoon first and have enjoyed getting to know him again through the strips. I named my youngest daughter Olive, for crying out loud. Toot! Toot!

Thursday, June 23, 2011


My graphic novel, THE LIFE AND TIMES OF JULIUS DESTRUCTUS, is officially up for sale!
Buy one HERE!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Cauldron In The Back Cabinet!

That's right! My little baby is about ready to fly out of the nest and into the bright world! The first book is ready to print and I am taking pre-orders! You can check out the first 30 or so pages over here. If you want would like a copy, drop me a line and your name will go on the list! 

It's 48 black and white pages with full-color cover.  
$8 for the book and $2 for shipping and it will come to your door with an original sketch tucked inside! 
(Let me know if you want the sketch kept PG.)

When Livi stumbles across a strange black pot in her parent’s kitchen she unexpectedly opens a door to a magical world filled with mystery.   

How far through the door is she willing to go?

And can she close the door before it becomes too dangerous?

I will also have stuff at Summit City Comic Con again on June 18th at the Grand Wayne Center. Stop by and say hi and pick up a book. 
Lots of other great buddies there with some great work for sale! 

Hope to see you!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Road Runner

I'm still learnin' meself some digital inking. And as a line snob, these lines are not what I'd like, but I did have fun with the background. Which, to be honest, is some of my favorite pieces of animation ephemera from 50's and 60's animation and the Chuck Jones directed backgrounds of Warner Bros.' Road Runner era where among the best. They influence me more than I think I even realize on a daily basis. All animation, really. So this is a send up to my childhood and all that is great about geeking out about something. Next time I'll do a better job on the lines!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Tragic Passing of Carl Winslow

I'm sure at some point in Family Matters, Carl said that Steve's antics would be the death of him. You were so right, Carl. You were so right.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Steve Urkel

Steve Urkel 90's comic version 1.0

I never really watched this show that much when it was on, I did like step by step and full house. I remember watching some movie with him in it where he played the "cool" kid that was rapping. All I could think was that's Urkel!!! I am also sure that is what everone else was thinking about that......and every other time this poor bastard tried to play another role.

Since this was from the 90's, here is my comic version of Steve. Done with pen and copic markers.