Friday, July 14, 2017

Bella Rachlin - Wonder Woman

2017.07.09 Garden State Comic Fest, Morristown, NJ

Bella Rachlin is a Kubert School graduate, who originally comes from Tel Aviv. Bella has recently collaborated on the cover of Blue Juice Comics' Accelerators #11, with Nick Justus, as well as an incentive print for Tom Stillwell's Kickstarter for Fangirl.

I had requested a sketch of Wonder Woman, because I was very impressed with the work Bella did on the Morristown PBA Garden State Comic Fest commemorative poster...
The artwork features Wonder Woman and a Morristown Police cruiser...

In my short time speaking with Bella, I found a very talented and enthusiastic artist. 

Friday, July 7, 2017

Michael Grassia - Doctor Fate

2013.11.03 Jersey Shore Comic Show, Forked River, NJ

Often when I request a sketch, I do not have the opportunity to watch it being drawn, and I like the surprise and anticipation.  My surprise on Doctor Fate, was that I thought I had posted this!

I was going through my files and realized I had never posted this cover from Michael Grassia, creator of Plunger Pup. Grassier has worked in illustration, graphic design, web design, video production, photography and puppetry. He can be found at all the best NJ based shows.

Doctor Fate is a DC Comics character appearing in several incarnations. The original Doctor was created by Gardner Fox and Howard Sherman appearing in More Fun Comics #55, May 1940.

Sorry I missed this one!

Friday, June 30, 2017

Jay Wecht - Batman

2017.04.29 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

I have not been able to find out too much about Jay Hecht, except he is a teacher in New Jersey.  He was sitting at the National Cartoonist Society table at the ECCC. He had several caricatures set out, so I ask for a sketch.  He selected the Wonder Woman first day cover, and drew Batman giving an Okay sign, it take that Batman approves of the stamp...


Friday, June 23, 2017

Nicole Lombardi

2017.06.18 Mt Bethel, Pa
Water Gap Comic Expo

Nicole Lombardi (N.M. Lombardi) is a Philadelphia-area writer with a lifelong interest in crafting short, impactful fiction and original labels. In addition to writing, Nicole enjoys traditional and digital art, photography, animal rescue, travel and home improvement.

When I came across Nicole's table, I started looking over her sketches. Her art featured some celebrity portraits, hearts, Goot, superheroes...
I asked if she was doing any sketch work, and she replied yes. Nicole, her husband Marc and I started discussing what she might like to draw, when I noticed a cat with a witches hat. I did not have a cover with a cat stamp, so I asked for a wizard rabbit, which Nicole drew rather quickly. I am always amazed at an artist who can produce a beautiful piece of art so effortlessly.

During our discussion, Nicole stated that she was really an writer, who used her art to attract people to her table.  I worked on me, and I picked up one of her books, The True Heart (available on Amazon).

I have only read the first story so far and found it to be a delightful story, I look forward to the rest.


It was a true pleasure to meet both Nicole and Marc, and I wish them all the best in their future..

Friday, June 16, 2017

John Higgins - Judge Dredd

2017.04.29 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

John Higgins, writer-artist, who has provided significant work for 2000 AD and as a colorist for Alan Moore on Watchmen and Tharp's Future Shocks, original colorist on Batman: The Killing Joke..

Higgins worked on Judge Dredd for over 20 years and created the character Razorjack. Other titles that Higgins has worked on include Transmetropolitan, Vertigo Secret Files: Hellblazer, The Thing from Another World, Swamp Thing, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Superman, Shade the Changing Man, Preacher, Knights of Pendragon, Doom Patrol and many others...

Judge Dredd was created by John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra, appearing in the second issue of 2000 AD, 1977.


Royal Mail issued a series of stamps to commemorate the 350th anniversary of the infamous blaze that is an integral part of British history. The stamps tells the story in a graphic novel style, evoking the high drama of those days, with a high degree of historical accuracy.

The series of 6-stamps were designed by John Higgins with colors by Sally Jane Hurst, both signed the cover for me. They were both very nice and a little surprised to see the Great Fires stamps and first day cover show up at the convention.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Mike Grell - Starslayer

2017.04.29 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

Mike Grell is a writer and artist, recognized for his contributions to the characters The Warlord and Green Arrow. Grill also created the character Shaman's Tears for Image Comics. Breaking into comics in 1973, Grell first worked on the DC titles Superbly and the Legion of Super-Heroes. Grill also provided art for the daily Tarzan comic strips from 1981-1983.

Grill developed the creator-owned characters John Sable Freelance, for First Comics, and Starslayer, published by Pacific Comics in 1982. The cover claims Starslayer to be a Celtic Barbarian in the Far Flung future..  Tori McQuillen is a Celtic warrior, who is pulled into the future while fighting Roman invaders. He joins the crew of the spaceship the Jolly roger, whose crew are fighting the oppression of Earth by it's rulers...

I chose to ask Grell for a sketch of Starslayer, since I did not have a Green Arrow first day cover. I also owned a copy of Starslayer #1, so I felt it was a good choice. By Mike Grell's standards this is considered a quick sketch. Of note is that Grell offers his own Certificate of Authentication. Although it is not something I get involved with, since I am not making purchases for the purpose of re-sale, I thought it made good sense to take the option. Since the authentication comes from Grell himself, and most collectors would know this, it truly authenticates the sketch.. Besides the fact that he only charges an additional $2 for the service...

Friday, June 2, 2017

Gino Patti - Wonder Woman

2017.04.29 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

Gino Patti has been drawing since he was 4 years old, inspired by a Spider-Man action figure. Patti was accepted into Pratt Institute to study his craft. He would get an internship at Valiant Comics, eventually working for them. Patti would be accepted into Disney animation talent program. He would provide designs for various commercial projects.

Patti was hired by Curious Pictures Studios, where he assisted on the design of the pilot episode of Cyberchase, which would be picked up by PBS.

From DC Comics - June 3 -  Honor the Power, Wisdom and Courage of Wonder Woman as fans around the world Celebrate Wonder Woman Day!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Shannon Wheeler - Too Much Coffee Man

2017.04.29 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

When I read that Shanon Wheeler would be at East Coast Comic Con, I searched through eBay for a coffee related first day cover. I found the above Silver Coffeepot from 2005, designed by Tania Lee, based on a coffeepot crafted by silversmiths in Philadelphia over 200 years ago. Apparently tea and coffee were a big part of the 18th century social life...

Coffee is still a big part of life today, and Shannon Wheeler knew this when he created Too Much Coffee Man in 1991. A satirical superhero, TMCM broods about the state of the world and politics first saw publication in the Daily Texan. TMCM would eventually make the pages of the Dark Horse Comic anthology series.

Wheeler published a book called Postage Stamp Funnies:

Wheeler is a cartoonist for the New Yorker magazine and a recipient of the Eisner Award 1995 and 2011.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Gerhard - Cerebus

2017.04.29 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

As anyone who attends a large convention knows, you can spend a lot of time standing on line. This takes time away from the potential to meet someone. I was standing on line to obtain a signature from Joe Giella, a silver age artist. I then realized I was standing in front of Gerhard's table. He was speaking with two fans and started sketching. My first thought was, it is possible he does not have a full dance card this late in the afternoon. I leaned in to speak with with wife to ask if it was possible to still obtain a sketch and she respond yes, of course it was. Wow!

A sketch from Gerhard was a dream for me, however the US Postal Service has not issued any aardvark stamps.  I chose a generic Star first day cover for the sketch.

Gerhard started his association with Dave Sim's Cereus with issue #65, in 1984. Gerhard often described his job as drawing tables and chairs behind an aardvark. Besides his work on Cereus, Gerhard has worked on Stephen R Bissette's Tyrant #1, colored Oni Press' Free Speeches #1 and provided a panel to Locust Moon's Little Nemo: Dream Another Dream, a beautiful look at the classic comic from the perspective of various artists

It was a pleasure meeting Gerhard and his wife. He has recently provided illustrations for a children's book The Wish, written by Shelley Byers



Joe Giella, Inkpot Award 1996, studied at the Arts Students League in Manhattan and obtaining his first job on the humor feature "Captain Codfish". He would obtain some freelance work at Fawcett Comics to ink Captain Marvel. He moved to Timely/Marvel finishing backgrounds and making pencil corrections on Captain America  Comics, Human Torch, Sub Mariner and others. 

At DC Comics he would start inking Flash, Green Lantern, Black Canary and other titles for Julius Schwartz. He would ink Alex Toth westerns and Sheldon Moldoff Batman stories and Gil Kane's Green Lantern...

Giella also assisted on King Features Syndicate comic strips Flash Gordon and The Phantom, inking Dan Barry and Sy Barry. Up until 2016 Giella was drawing the comic strip Mary Worth.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Bill Wray - Gasoline Alley

2017.04.29 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

I had met Bill Wray at last year's East Coast Comic Con, but did not have the opportunity to obtain a sketch. So this year I made the effort to reach his table and request a sketch. Wray is a cartoonist noted for his work on the Ren & Stimpy show and Samuri Jack, as well as starting out with Disney, Hanna-Barbera and Filmation studios.  He has contributed to Mad magazine and co-created Hellboy Jr, with Mike Mignola.

Wray sketches scream with the Ren & Stimpy style, and I thought I would obtain a sketch of either character doing something stoopid. Wray started looking through the selection of covers I had with me and became engrossed in the art of the stamps. He stopped at the Classic Comics stamp for Gasoline Alley and started to reminisce about his enjoyment of the newspaper comics especially Gasoline Alley.

When I returned to pick up the sketch I was very surprised to see Wray had drawn the main characters Walt Wallet and Skeezix, in the style of the original comics, as done by Frank King during the 1920's. We are the same age, so I know the nostalgic feeling he must have had when he did this. Gasoline Alley was one of the few comic strips that actually grew up with you as you read it..

Thank you Bill for a truly beautiful tribute..

Under the name William Wray, he paints the Urban Landscape series of fine paintings documenting the urban California landscape..


Jim Scancarelli sketch, with his 90th anniversary strip honoring those who came before him: Frank King (creator 1918-1959), Bill Perry (Sunday strips 1951-1975) Dick Moores (1956-1986)


Friday, May 5, 2017

Mr Havoc - Groot

2017.04.29 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

Hr. Havoc (Chris Alvarez), his Facebook and twitter pages states he is a New Jersey based artist, illustrator, father and husband. Comic needing, movie quoting, drawn, bad ass.
Love me some comics, toys and movies
Who doesn't love Groot


Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 opens today, looking forward to it...Enjoy!

Friday, April 28, 2017

Nicky Soh - Rock Mary Rock

2016.04.17 East Coast Comic Con, Secaucus, NJ

Rock Mary Rock is a comic created by Nicky Soh, an artist from Singapore who studied at the Savannah College of Art and Design. The concept for Rock Mary Rock, about a young girl who picks up a haunted guitar, releasing the Rock n Roll spirit was developed over many years. After being turned down by major publishers, Soh turned the comic into a 2015 web-comic.

Rock Mary Rock has since been independently been released as a comic book..