Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Wednesday... Me Drawing Batman, and Something Magical by the Best Guy Who Ever Drew Batman!

First up today isn't exactly promotional. Yeah, I will get back to pushing my wares as a writer and inker again soon. I just figured we could all use a li'l break. Besides, as I look around on my hard drive for art to share here, I keep finding stuff of my own that I'd like to offer.

So, not much commentary required here. Just a Batman Sketch I did a few years back. I draw Batman more than anyone else (aside from Green Arrow, I guess, if you count all the free GA head shots I've done over the years). He's always been my favorite superhero, and he's fun to draw. It's pretty rare, though, that I produce anything very memorable. Batman has been drawn by a lot of guys in a league that I can only aspire to. Still, I like this drawing because of its power and immediacy. The drawing is okay, but it's got a confidence and a power that I'm proud of.

I ink most of my paying work these days with a pen, but I do love to play around with a brush. This sketch was done with a flat watercolor brush.

I would certainly hope that, by now, we all know that BATMAN is owned by DC Comics.

I have to confess that I no longer own the piece I'm showing off today. I used to, though, and since I made the rules of this blog, I say that's good enough.

As soon as I saw Neal Adams' work, I was a huge fan. I think only Kirby connected with me as instantly and as powerfully as Adams did. I sought out everything I could get by Neal: comics, fanzines, posters, prints, and portfolios. Among the portfolios were three packages that reprinted Neal's fantastic Tarzan paperback cover paintings. These images really blew me away. They were dynamic, and the drawings were incredible. Neal's color sense isn't the most revolutionary, but he paints well enough to tell his single-image stories.

I also quickly became obsessed with the way Neal drew with a pencil. Some of the fanzines I had gotten my hands on reprinted pencil sketches, and they were just awesome. Neal used a pencil like no one else I had ever seen. Come to think of it, I still don't think Ive seen anyone wield a pencil like Neal did. There is so much there... so much beauty and grace, but always delivered with such vitality. Just amazing.

So, when I started collecting original artwork, Neal's work was at the top of my list. Many years later, I came across the drawing I'm sharing today. I jumped on it. While I don't know that this drawing was part of the process in developing one of the Tarzan covers, it certainly seems likely. Eventually, I would sell this piece off to help pay for an upgrade... two larger prelims for the same Tarzan cover. You'll see those another day.

For now, just soak up what Neal can do with a pencil. I have left the file size quite large on this one, because I want you to be able to really see each and every line. Remember that this drawing measures no more than 7 inches wide. Damn, what I wouldn't give to be able to draw like that. I have a theory that artists often end up admiring other artists who can do what they themselves struggle with. I'll revisit this point with examples at some point, but for now, you can consider me a prime example. I draw more like the gorilla on the left side of this picture than I do like Neal Adams. What he does just seems magical to me, which is probably why I never get tired of his work.

Okay... enough outta me. Enjoy the genius, and come back for more tomorrow!


Anyone know who owns Tarzan these days? At any rate, someone does, so don't be a pain in the ass about it!

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