In the overwhelmingly male comic book industry, it has been a challenge for some editors and readers to see the ever growing number of talented women currently trying to make a name for themselves. With that in mind, ComicsAlliance offers Hire This Woman, a recurring feature designed for comics readers as well as editors and other professionals, where we shine the spotlight on a female comics pro on the ascendance. Some of these women will be at the very beginning of their careers, while others will be more experienced but not yet “household names.”
New York City feels like there's a museum on every block. I've lived here my whole life, and I like to think I've spent a good amount of that time as a semi-regular visitor of some of the historical sites and cultural institutions my hometown has to offer, yet I am not remotely close to having seen even a quarter of the museums this city has to offer. Many of them you know -- some are iconic, seemingly enormous, and world renowned, while others are smaller and occasionally temporary, but nonetheless significant. Basically, when it comes to taking in the culture in the largest city in the history of civilization, you do the best you can.
But sometimes you make seeing something a priority. And Prototype Alpha -- the "Pop-Up" museum created by the Jack Kirby Museum and Research Center that was open for seven days only this past week -- was one of those times. Located on Manhattan's Lower East Side, just a few blocks from where the iconic artist was raised, the museum was the first physical presence for the organization, and served as a wonderful testament to a man who is inarguably one of the most important artists New York City produced in the 20th century.
Sean Murphy wants to take on six up-and-coming art students as apprentices next year, but he needs a little extra money to do it.
That's why he and his wife Colleen have launched a Kickstarter to raise some educational funds. But the apprenticeships aren't all the money will go to; it will also fund the production of a 100-page book called Cafe Racer, with seven vignettes by Murphy and his students.
Jemma Salume composes fanciful and nature-inspired illustrations with a strong sense of the mythological. Majestic tigers stretch and snarl in glowing scenes while mystical lovers steal kisses amongst brilliant fields of butterflies. Zebras and hyenas dance a deadly dance in the natural world's veldt, while in otherworldly forests, sirens and avian geishas wait to feed.
Many ofLaura Knetzger's charming watercolor paintings are self-portraits, but with unusual secondary subjects, spending time with video game characters, especially those from the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. That's when she isn't painting scenes from other games, anime, or The Hobbit.
We make a regular practice at ComicsAlliance of spotlighting particular artists or specific bodies of work, but because cartoonists, illustrators and their fans share countless numbers of great images on sites like Flickr, Tumblr, DeviantArt and seemingly infinite art blogs that we’ve created Best Art Ever (This Week), a weekly depository for just some of the pieces of especially compelling artwork that we come across in our regular travels across the Web. Some of it’s new, some of it’s old, some of it’s created by working professionals, some of it’s created by future stars, some of it’s created by talented fans, and some of it’s endearingly silly. All of it’s awesome.
The comic book, animation, illustration, pinup, mashup, fan art and design communities are generating amazing artwork of myriad styles and tastes, all of which ends up on the Internet and filtered into ComicsAlliance's Best Art Ever (This Week). These images convey senses of mood and character -- not to mention artistic skill -- but comic books are specifically a medium of sequential narratives, and great sequential art has to be both beautiful (totally subjective!) and clear in its storytelling (not so subjective!). The words and the pictures need to work together to tell the story and create whatever tone, emotion and indeed world the story requires. The contributions of every person on a creative team, from the writer to the artist(s) to the letterers, are necessary to achieving a great page of sequential storytelling.
It is the special nature of comic books that we're celebrating in this all-new recurring feature: Best Sequential Art Ever (This Week).
Here at ComicsAlliance, we love pretty much all things Judge Dredd (with maybe oneexception). We're also admirers of the work of illustrator Ulises Farinas. As such, any combination of the two is going to pique our interests, so when we found out Farinas and colorist Ryan Hill would be teaming up with writer -- and Judge Dredd historian -- Douglas Wolk on an upcoming Judge Dredd miniseries for IDW and 2000 AD, we were intrigued. And if this early piece of promotional art is any indication, readers are in for a treat.
On sale now from BOOM! Studios is Hit #3, the penultimate issue of the 1950s Los Angeles crime drama written by Bryce Carlson and drawn by Vanessa R. Del Rey. Part of the publisher's We Are Boom campaign spotlighting original (as opposed to licensed) works, Hit has received decent word-of-mouth and the first issue even sold out of its initial print run of 10,000 copies. Contributing to that success is the cover artwork of comics veteran Ryan Sook, whose Hit work is a distinctly gritty departure from the artist's traditionally shiny, even inspiring superhero illustrations for DC Comics and others. The covers are a good fit with Del Rey's scratchy but sexy sequentials, which combined with the moody palette of Archie Van Buren and the period-appropriate lettering and design of Ed Dukeshire and Hanna Nance Partlow makes Hit one of the more attractive packages coming out of BOOM Studios at the moment.
We had a chance to see some of Sook's preliminary cover concepts for this week's Hit #3, which were quite striking and prompted some questions about his process. The artist was gracious enough to answer them.
Following the conclusion of the publisher's Infinity event, next month Marvel will release Avengers #24.NOW, from creators Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic. Meant in part to be a jumping on point for readers, the issue will also serve as the introduction to the publisher's All-New Marvel NOW launch -- Avengers #24.NOW is concurrently being billed as Avengers #1 under this new initiative.
But as part of it's push to promote the new, Marvel is also celebrating its past. Several variant covers to Avengers #24.NOW are being produced, and some are homages to famous past covers, including some of the more memorable cover art from the 50 year history of the X-Men. To that end, Marvel has enlisted artists Mike Deodato, Daniel Acuña, Lee Garbett, and more to create images in homage to the cover work of Jack Kirby and John Byrne, and you can check out some examples below.
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