Friday, August 31, 2012

Brian Buniak - Laurel & Hardy

2012.06.09 Super Mega Show, Whippany, NJ

After my previous post of a Brian Buniak sketch, I continuing reading his blog. I was impressed by his story of fulfilling a life-long dream of being hit in the face with a pie by Soupy Sales. I had decided if I had the opportunity of meeting Buniak again I would request a sketch related to the slapstick comedy genius of throwing a pie.  The  first thrown pie was seen in the 1909 silent movie Mr. Flip starring Ben Turpin, then being extended into the pie-fight by Chaplin in 1916. Laurel and Hardy would stage the largest pie-throwing episode on film in the 1927 film Battle of the Century using over 3,000 pies. Buniak uses the classic pie hitting someone other than the intended victim....Splabb! on this Comedians Laurel and Hardy first day cover. the design of the stamp is by Hirschfeld and Buniak utilizes his style masterfully.

In 1941 the Three Stooges staged a major pie-fight in In The Sweet Pie and Pie...

The Three Stooges started out as a vaudeville and comedy act, which would eventually turn to movie shorts, full-length features, cartoons and comic books, which played endlessly on television keeping their slapstick humor alive for generations to enjoy...

The trio originally consisted of brothers Moe and Shemp Howard and Larry Fine. Another brother, Curly Howard replaced Shemp, becoming the most popular of the Stooges. Shemp returned when Curly fell ill in 1946. When Shemp died of a heart attack in 1955 Joe Besser and Joe "Curly Joe" DeRita would fill in...

The above cartoon stamps, issued in 1959, are not postally valid, known as Cinderella stamps or poster stamps, however the Three Stooges would eventually be honored on valid postage stamps from Transdenstria, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Chad, Gambia, Guryana, Mongolia, Mozambique, Senegal, Liberia, Guinea, Turkmenistan (along with Jerry Garcia and Elvis), Tuvalu...

The poster stamps were designed and signed by Norman Maurer, comic artist, writer, director and producer and Moe Howard's son-in-law...
2011.08.09 Geech by Jerry Bittle

Even Ziggy by Tom Wilson gets into the act...

Friday, August 24, 2012

Matteo Scalera - Captain America


2012.06.27 Little Shop of Comics, Scotch Plains, NJ

Matteo Scalera was born in Parma, Italy.  He started his professional career with the publication of Hyperkinetic, a 4-issue series from Image Comics. Scalera has also worked on Dynamo 5 and PopGun for Image Comics. Scalera also was one of the twelve winners in the first ChesterQuest, a worldwide talent research by Marvel Comics...

In 2010 Scalera started working for the House of Ideas, mostly on the character Deadpool in Deadpool Team-Up, Deadpool Corps and Deadpool: Merc with a Mouth. He has also worked for Bomm! on Outcast and is currently working on Secret Avengers with Rick Remender for Marvel Comics.

Scalera has published Some Like It Rough, in 2012, through Essential Sequential, a sketch book of Scalera's work limited to a print run of 450 books. The book features 52 pages of beautifully rendered artwork... My signed copy on the left...

Scalera was at Little Shop of Comics promoting the upcoming Secret Avengers as well as his new sketch book. Sometimes when I am at conventions I do not get a chance to watch the artist. This night I was transfixed as Scalera drew this excellent sketch of Captain America. First he did a pencil sketch, erased most of it, then inked the drawing. white highlights were added to complete the sketch...

You can view more of Scalera's work at matteoscalera.deviantart.com

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

D'oh! - USPS the Simpsons

2012.08.22 - Stuck with the Simpsons
The Star Ledger (NJ)

In a article by Angela Greiling Keane, it was mentioned that the USPS wasted $1.2 million in printing costs for the Simpsons stamps. The over-production resulted from the USPS projection that the stamp buying public would welcome the commemorative stamp.  1 billion stamps were produced, while 318 million were sold. The Simpsons stamp were available from 2009-2010 and feature individual stamps of Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie.

Currently the top selling stamps are the 1993 Elvis Presley and the 1995 Marilyn Monroe issues. The 1997 Bugs Bunny series and the 2010 Animal shelter pets both sold out and had to be re-printed.

Personally as a collector I found the stamps very unattractive. I think if the designs were better, a family image or a scene from the series, the stamps may have been better received by the stamp buying public...

Friday, August 17, 2012

Neal Adams - Green Lantern

2012.08.04 The Great Allentown Comic Con! (Pa)

Neal Adams is known for helping to create images of several well-known DC Comics characters: Superman, Batman, Green Arrow, Green Lantern and Deadman...

Adams broke into the comics industry with Archie Comics providing some pages for The Fly, 1960. this led to work drawing backgrounds for the Bat Masterson newspaper comic strip with Howard Nostrand. After some freelance work in advertising, Adams was invited to draw samples for the newspaper comic strip Ben Casey in 1962...

At Warren Publishing, Adams' provided work with Archie Goodwin for "Curse of the Vampire", Creepy 1967. Adams' debut with DC came in 1967 on the anthology was series "Our Army at War". Adams would finally contribute to the Superhero comics with an Action Comics cover, featuring Superman, followed by Superman's Girlfriend Lois Lane, Detective Comics, The Brave and the Bold, World's Finest Comics...

In 1969, while still freelancing for DC, Adams began working for Marvel Comics drawing for X-Men and horror anthologies...

The stamp commemorating DC Comics' Green Lantern, issued in 2006, comes from the Green Lantern-Green Arrow #76 cover, April 1970, featuring Adams' artwork. It was this issue that revamped the characters of the Green Lantern and Green Arrow. Adams and Dennis O'Neil brought together two very different heroes and took their story through social issues as well as the typical superhero adventure...

Adams would go on to illustrate - Tarzan, Megalith, Bucky O'Hare, Ms. Mystic, the Spectre, JLA, Teen Titans, Elongated Man, Avengers, Conan the Barbarian, Thor, Batman and Robin, Vampirella, and many others.

Adams was inducted into the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame 1998 and the Jack Kirby Hall of Fame 1999, voted Favorite Comic Book artist 1977, 1978, Inkpot Award 1977...

It was a pleasure spending a few minutes with Neal Adams, a delightful man and excellent artist...we all know bow ties are cool, but Adam's was wearing a Joker tie, also cool...

Friday, August 10, 2012

Terry Naughton - King Triton

2012.08.04 The Great Allentown Comic Con! (Pa)
King Triton pencil sketch

Terry Naughton can handle many different styles in a variety of media. He worked for Walt Disney Feature Animation for 17 years as an animation assistant and storyboard artist. He worked on all the recent classics such as The Little Mermaid (King Triton), Beauty and the Beast (the Beast) and Aladdin (the Genie) to name only a few. Terry has also created the last ten U.S.C. football posters and various work for the N.F.L. Terry illustrates book covers and helps create and illustrate children's books. Terry is currently working on the "Abyss Walker Series" by Author Shane Moore...

I am still a kid at heart and I enjoy Disney movies, so it was a thrill to meet Terry, HE WORKED FOR DISNEY!

When I saw Terry's name on the guest list for the Allentown show getting a sketch was a must. Obviously my choices would be the Beast (from Beauty and the Beast) or King Triton. Matt made the decision as he said Triton was cooler. The  Little Mermaid was released in 1989, based on the fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson, utilizing the traditional hand drawn method of animation. Mermaid was the last feature film to use traditional hand-paintd cels for animation. Personally I think CGI is great for some animation, but good hand drawn is still the best... Terry's Triton is awesome, and I like the way Triton is looking at Nemo, as if wondering what type of trouble will this one get into!?

Finding Nemo was a Disney computer-animated film release in 2003, voted the 10th greatest animated film by the American Film Institute in 2008. The stamp was released by the USPS as part of their Mail a Smile campaign, released with other Disney-Pixar based stamps (A Bugs Life, Incredibles, Toy Story 2 and Monsters, Inc.)
In 2003 we had taken a family vacation to Disney World, Orlando. part of the park featured a Disney-MGM studios, complete with tours that featured Disney animation. One part of the tour featured a Disney animator who explained the animation process while he was drawing. His drawing was projected overhead for all of the guests to see. It was an excellent demonstration and learning process. As the group moved on, Matt and I hung back. I had brought a small journal to document our trip to the park. I asked the artist if he could provide us with a drawing. The animator was most pleasant and did not hesitate. He discussed art with us, while encouraging Matt to continue his drawing. He even gave Matt some of his pencils, to encourage his drawing, he could not have been nicer. He provided the above sketch of Koda from Brother Bear. I had quickly written down his name as Issac, but I don't have his last name. He also did some work at the time on Treasure Planet...
Update: after a little more research I believe the artist to be Isacc V Cropp III (IVCIII)
2012.08.14

Terry and I had a great conversation on working at Disney and we shared our stories, his about hearing from some grateful fans, he still carries the letter which he let me read. It was very touching, and as he said "that is what it is all about"...reaching people and knowing they enjoy his work...

Friday, August 3, 2012

Sean Chen - Iron Man

2012.03.31 NY Comic Book Marketplace, NYC

Sean Chen, started his career after being discovered by Barry Windsor-Smith. His first job was for Valiant Comics, penciling X-O Manowar, Bloodshot, harbinger and Rai and the Future Force...

Moving to Marvel, Chen drew Ironman for over three years, along with Wolverine, Elektra, Nova and The X-Men: Then End. While working on Wolverine he was listed as one of Wizard: Guide to the Comics' Top Ten artists...

Chen is expanding his talents by working on designing furniture, kitchens and designer toys and figurines...