animals

In Comic Stores Near You - Aspen Mascots

Today I've got some really exciting news... well, news that I probably should've shared two months ago but NEVERTHELESS...

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I've been working with Aspen Comics since late last year on an all-ages title called Mascots! The story is written by Vince Hernandez, penciled and inked by Joie Foster (ME, in case somehow you're lost and don't know whose blog you're on...), colored by Justice, lettered by Micah Myers, and edited by Gabe Carrasco.

What's it about??

This sums is up rather nicely!

This sums is up rather nicely!

A milipede villain (villipede?) named Wormier must rescue his worm-y village by any means necessary, and builds a time machine to achieve his goals! And of course because it's time travel, nothing works the way he wants it to and he goes off on a zany adventure through time with his gryphon buddy, Griff. Yes, a gryphon named Griff. It's a thing. A ton of the mascots, creatures, and other critters from popular Aspen titles are involved, so be ready to get your cute-and-hilarious on!

Featuring a sense of humor that is very in tune with my own...

Featuring a sense of humor that is very in tune with my own...

How do I buy the thing??

At your local comic book store in the back of any Aspen title that comes out this year! And... uh... turns out Chapter One came out in February, Chapter two in March, and Chapter Three this month... so I'm a bit late to the game in telling y'all about this. Whoops!

At least that means you can binge read it?

At least that means you can binge read it?

Luckily, most comic stores have issues from the last several months so if you go, you can probably still find the books that my story is in. Also, here's a handy-dandy list to make your shopping trip easier:

  • Chapter 1 can be found in: Charismagic (vol 3) #1, Shrugged 3 #1 
  • Chapter 2 is in: Charismagic (vol 3) #2, Shrugged 3 #2, Jirni (vol 3) #1
  • Chapter 3 is in: Charismagic (vol 3) #3, Portal Bound #1

And for those of you who are visual:

A gratuitous shot of my comp copies to make life easier for you... including Portal Bound which you should DEFINITELY check out since my buddy Gabe is a writer on it!

A gratuitous shot of my comp copies to make life easier for you... including Portal Bound which you should DEFINITELY check out since my buddy Gabe is a writer on it!

Buy and then read all the things, and then tell me what you think. Be gentle, us artists are delicate beings.

Chapter 4 comes out soon, so make sure you're ready for it! (Oh... uh. Speaking of, I'M not ready for it, so I better get back to the drawing table like NOW...)

Typical artist.

Typical artist.

Halloween ComicFest 2017!

Wow, I've been a little absent these last few weeks, haven't I? I have tons of blog posts planned, but have found myself a little, um... busy. I recently started a new in-studio job (the art test I had to do for it was referenced in my work-cation post, details to come later).

So, in the meantime... Halloween has come and gone, and with it-- Halloween ComicFest! I'm super excited because that means not only do I have comp copies in my grubby little hands, but I can also share my pages with you! So without further ado, here they are!

The Cover! By Simone Di Meo-- and perfection, b/c there's a Stranger Things 2 ad on the back!

The Cover! By Simone Di Meo-- and perfection, b/c there's a Stranger Things 2 ad on the back!

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Two of the pages in action, with letters!

Two of the pages in action, with letters!

Aspen's Halloween ComicFest 2017

I am a part of Aspen's Halloween ComicFest's issue again this year!

Aspen's HWCF 2017 Cover by  Simone Di Meo

Aspen's HWCF 2017 Cover by Simone Di Meo

"Aspen Comics' jam-packed, activity-filled, absolutely free coloring book returns... but, this time with a TWIST, and a whole gang of Aspen Animals ready to usher in a new era of fun! Readers can Choose Your Own Adventure in this time-spanning, fantasy realm-busting and speed-bursting new interactive tale! The Aspen Universe has been split into three and it's up to Aspen readers to help guide our hero creatures to safety and unite these worlds back together, all in one exciting coloring book!" - HalloweenComicFest.com

I did pencils and inks for one of the story branches in this choose your own adventure-style comic, which, I gotta say, is a pretty cool concept. I read a ton of those books as a kid, and loved them. Ah, the 90s. In addition, if you've followed my art for even five minutes you'll probably have figured out that I love drawing animals, so a title featuring just animal characters had me super jazzed.

And what is Halloween ComicFest, you may ask? Well, they made a handy video to explain it so that I don't have to!

This book will be available for FREE at your local comic book shop on October on Saturday, October 28. Make sure you get one for yourself!

Check out the full list of Halloween ComicFest titles here!

Oliver Oil

Back in January, I began a private commission for painting an olive oil label featuring an owner’s cat… aptly named Oliver. Cats? Puns? Food? I’m so on board.

 

When working with a client of any kind, I have a consultation with them first to discuss subject matter, timeline, and budget. I try to absorb as much info as I can about what they're envisioning, and then I get to sketchin'. I had received quite a few reference pictures of Oliver, who is one of those floofy cats that sometimes gets a hilarious lion cut. His face also conveys a lot of what I like to call "judgemental attitude." It's like he's peering directly into your soul and judging what he finds.

My client enjoyed all three sketches, but we both felt like it needed more oomph. For round two of the sketches, I suggested we pull in super tight around the cat’s face so we could really convey that facial expression.

We both really liked the one with the olive branch in his mouth, so it really helped sell the "Oliver Oil" concept. After all, this bottle is meant to sit next to a stove and be used, we'd better be sure what's inside! Once the sketch was approved, it was time to move to color comps. We chose option #2, and I began to paint!

I've painted a lot of fuzzy characters in my time, but I've never really, y'know, painted fur. Like in detail. It was actually quite fun to do, once I'd figured out a technique that worked for me. Once the painting and hand-painted text was buttoned up, my client had the challenge of "how to put it on a bottle." The issue with a label like this is that you need for it to be waterproof so the oil doesn't ruin the design. It takes a special sort of paper, and most "custom" olive oil label printing services require you get at least 10.

And so this is the solution my client came up with! The bottle ended up being a different shape than the one we'd planned for, but I still think it turned out quite cute. I'd like to come up with my own solution to printing olive oil (and wine!) labels, because I want to design more!

Interested in me painting your pet (or something else) for a custom wine or olive oil label? Feel free to email me!