“Today, in our field, there is so much talent and recognition that we are reaching a saturation point. An artist should no longer strive only for breathtaking craftsmanship; he should, instead, try to help us live better, either by dressing the wounds that are constantly being opened by society, or by offering solutions to get us out of the mess we’re in…But it’s going to be difficult and we have a lot of work to do.” - Jean 'Moebius' Giraud

Wednesday, May 30, 2012


[9.25 x 14" - blue pencil, brush & technical pen on 100lb/300series bristol board]

[9.25 x 14" - blue pencil, brush & technical pen on 100lb/300series bristol board]

[9.25 x 14" - blue pencil, brush & technical pen on 100lb/300series bristol board]

The third issue in this volume's installment came out today. I didn't know because I am not hip and not current on the comic book scene. It is to say, I know nothing.

What I do know is that it was an honor and a pleasure to pay a tribute to the late, great DAVE STEVENS and his classic creation - both personal heroes of mine. I've loved the Rocketeer for as long as I could remember and it's all I could do not to squeal as I drew each page. It truly was, as best as I could draw without embarrassing myself too much, a love letter to what that character meant and felt to me when I was growing up.

And once again, I am saved from the chains of black and white mediocrity with the help of illustrator/designer CASSANDRA POULSON. She had to deal with a truncated deadline due to my inability to maintain a decent schedule. But not only did she come through with an artistic effort that rivals any seasoned veteran's (this was her very first professional coloring endeavor - cheers to her, eh?), but I believe she also gave each and every one of the pages the vintage and nostalgic aesthetic I was looking for. She's a trooper, took direction without pause, and worked her eyes bleary. I am proud to be associated with her. Visit the link above to her blog for a preview of the colored versions of the pages (sans dialog boxes) and I'm sure you're agree - she's formidable.

If you can, drop by your local comic book store and purchase yourself a copy. The book really did come out marvelously. Okay - that's all for now. I hope you all had a fine holiday weekend.

PS - My sincerest thanks and gratitude goes to IDW's SCOTT DUNBIER for allowing me to participate in such a wonderful short story - written by none other than MATT WAGNER himself. Scott was the very definition of a 'dream editor' and Matt's script was a gem. I am a very proud and lucky fellow for having had the opportunity to work with both of them. Thanks, gents - you're both all sorts of class.

Thursday, May 24, 2012


At this year's upcoming HEROES CONVENTION 30th ANNIVERSARY (Woot!) in Charlotte, NC, there will be a 5K (3.1 miles) Fun Run which RICO RENZI (who lent his substantial coloring skills tot he promotional image above) is helping to organize. I think it's a brilliant idea which I am looking forward to participating in. On top of that, there will be a small modest monetary collection taken from the participants - the total sum of which will be generously given to a local charity. It's gonna be a hoot.

Onto the 'Portfolio Review' part.

For me, Heroes Con is a great convention to meet young, up-and-coming artists coming out of school looking for critiques about their work from the professionals attending the show. I'm excited to help as much as I can with whatever insight and advice I can give. But I've always believed that (just based on my experience with drawing actual comic books) there are other artists and illustrators who could offer up better, more applicable advice than I ever could. So I wanted to try something new. It's something like this:

New Artists, I would love to review your portfolio; 30 minutes at a time, all day Sunday, the day after the Fun Run. But here's the only caveat: YOU HAVE TO RUN ON SATURDAY.

In my effort to help any future illustrator who's chosen to have a semi/fully-sedentary lifestyle, whose chosen profession may lead to future health issues, I would like to help in changing their attitude and their culture towards health. I'm speaking from personal experience, folks. I was 5'5" and nearing 200lbs at one point in my life - all because I made poor choices regarding my health as it pertains to and contradicts with my art and my deadlines. It was/is a horrible reality everyone has to deal with in our industry: You're out of shape because you love drawing. If you believe as I do that the long term value of becoming a relevant artist in your craft is exclusively about only drawing, then you're not seeing the bigger picture, and you've already started down the path of the riskiest of futures. The word you need to pay attention to now is 'longevity'. While your 'art' will get you recognized, appropriated with accolades, and celebrated among your peers - your 'life' and the fashion in which you are living it as you are exploring that 'art' has a lot to do with proper diet and exercise, your attitude towards balance and outlook, and the ability to visualize what/where you want to be 5-10-15 years from now.

But that's a lot to take in and put into practice all at one time. So for now, let's focus on health, yes?

That said, if you'd like to have 30mins of my time where I carefully go over your pages/samples - panel by panel, if need be, then that's the standing, non-negotiable offer: 3.1 MILES GETS YOU A 30 MINUTE PORTFOLIO REVIEW. Jog, run or sprint- its all the same to me. But on SATURDAY, JUNE 23rd, you're on the starting line with me at 6:30 AM. There's plenty of time to prepare between now & then, and there's a plethora of ARTICLES online that will help you train for the event. Now it just comes down to your determination.

On a personal note: There are many things that we may not be able to control nor agree upon within the business of this industry. I'm being candid with you when I say that more than half of the things I read about what's happening with mainstream comic books leave me saddened and shaking my head because things have gotten this way. But I understand that's not really in my control and accept that I can't change those things. What I can do is try to live up to the MOEBIUS quote that's in the header of this blog. That I can try for.

I hope you will help me.



[11 x 14" - blue pencil, brush & technical pen on 100lb/300series bristol board]

Oh no, love - you're not alone.
You're watching yourself, but you're too unfair.
You've got your head all tangled up, but if I could
only make you care.

Oh no, love - you're not alone.
No matter what or who you've been, 
No matter when or where you've seen.
All the knives seem to lacerate your brain.
I've had my share, I'll help you with the pain.

You're not alone.

Monday, May 14, 2012


[11 x 14" - blue pencil, brush & technical pen on 100lb/300series bristol board]


Sunday, May 13, 2012


[11 x 14" - blue pencil, brush & technical pen, COPIC marker on 100lb/300 series bristol board]

Apologies for making you wait, fellow who owns this image. Thanks for your patience.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012


[11 x 14" - blue pencil, brush & technical pen on 100lb/300series bristol board]

What you can't see is that there's a pencil on that table over there where the gulls are.

Which in turn begs the question, "Why is the pencil on the table?"

The thing is, as I've come to learn, the answer isn't really the most important part.

Friday, May 04, 2012


[12 x 9" - blue pencil & technical pen on 100lb/300series bristol board]

Go tell that long tongue liar, go and tell that midnight rider. Tell the rambler, the gambler, the back biter, tell 'em that God's gonna cut 'em down. Tell 'em that God's gonna cut 'em down
Well my goodness gracious let me tell you the news, my head's been wet with the midnight dew. I've been down on bended knee talkin' to the man from Galilee. He spoke to me in the voice so sweet, I thought I heard the shuffle of the angel's feet. He called my name and my heart stood still, when he said, "John go do My will!"