Comics

The Last Club Vamporama Epilogue

OR: ADVENTURES OF M PROLOGUE!!

Obviously, this is a follow-up to The Last Club Vamporama. Go read it and leave some feedback if you haven’t already!!

This strip was done back in January. The original plan was for a two-pager, but I only got the second page half finished, and, ultimately, decided to concentrate on other things, including the proper Adventures of M story—this is, after all, just a teaser.

Given its age and my on-off quest to improve my work, there are things about it I’m no longer very happy with. But it’s OK. Just as I tried to make the previous strip look “somewhat” like the old Vamporama stuff (but hopefully better), with this one I tried to transition it to closer to how I want the “M” stuff to look, but there’s still some connective tissue. Honestly, as and when I debut any future “M” material, I want it to have quite a different feel. And be better.

Stay tuned! Leave feedback!

Last CV Epilogue

Now for BONUS CONTENT

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Sketch Video: Drawing The Hulk!

As videos like this are quite popular, I’ve been toying with doing some recently. So I uploaded this one a while ago, but I was/am dissatisfied with the picture quality—I’m currently stuck with a camera that fares very badly over USB 2.0 in terms of quality & compression. (I do have access to a couple of nice cinema cameras, but honestly, for videos like this it’s better to keep it simple.)

Finally I decided to unleash it anyway… meanwhile, I shall be looking into a better video/camera solution.

Obviously, drawing the Hulk was an easy/lazy topic for me… the Hulk is my default go-to (and Herb Trimpe’s version the Gold Standard). This isn’t necessarily the best version I ever did. But it’s okay. For future vids, I’d like your suggestions, please. Suggest anything! If it isn’t ridiculous or impractical, I might give it a go.

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Neal Adams

Really, really sad to hear about the passing of Neal Adams. I think most of us can agree that he’s a highly significant figure in comics history.

I thought Neal was sure to be around for another 10-15 years, and producing decent art more or less till the day he died. The latter is virtually true—he was working on commissions as recently as ten days ago—but sadly, he had been fighting the effects of a sepsis infection for the past 11 months. That’s a tough battle at any age.

His later work is probably the stuff that will come to mind for some folks, and that’s… well, a small part of the story!! Neal’s art, for the past 30-35 years, has been generally solid and consistent, sometimes quite beautiful, if seldom a match for his peak stuff from the late ’60s through mid-’70s. But, it might be his increasingly eccentric writing that’s gained the most attention in recent years.

Batman: Odyssey, from 2010-11, which ran for 13 issues over two mini-series, had a lot of people scratching their heads. The distinctive and occasionally stunning visuals were a given, but Neal’s writing—barely flirting with conventional structure or internal logic—made the series something of a cult item. His writing only got weirder and more esoteric later on!

Batman Odyssey 7

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Amphius Man

Who?! Why, this guy:

Amphy 2021

He’s the first ‘proper’ character I ever created, I believe, back in 1981. For his origin and some very old artwork (haven’t you all wanted to see how dreadful my art was as a kid/youth?!), read on…

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Back Again

Yep, another little hiatus, but honestly I doubt I went a single day without thinking about what to blog next. I did want to commit to keeping this fairly ongoing again. And I will. But those of you who are regular readers, I hope, will feed me a little with feedback so I don’t feel excessively lonely here!

And, yes, some stuff has happened since October 27th. For one thing, Tikki had a trip up North to meet a Westie pal named Marco…

Tikki Marco Oct 21
Tikki & Marco in Lincoln, October 28th 2021

For another, it was my COUGHrd birthday on Oct 30.

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The Last Club Vamporama

Hah! So here it finally is!!

I’ve given this a lot of thought. I wasn’t planning to publish it. One of the reasons being that my attempt to do a colour version in Photoshop was looking so horrible (IMO), I couldn’t finish it. There were other reasons. See below the artwork for more details!! (Also, page two etc is below the cut, if you’re reading on the front page!)

Anyhow, finally decided to just put it up here and to hell with it…

Last-CV-pg1

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Kirby Art Inside Amazing Fantasy #15

Of course, everyone knows that Jack Kirby designed the original version of Spider-Man, which never got used. We know, also, that Kirby pencilled the cover to Spidey’s first appearance, in Amazing Fantasy #15 (1962)—because the original cover Ditko drew was rejected by Stan Lee.

But how about Kirby artwork inside this landmark comic? Well, surely, the iconic origin story is fully-pencilled & inked by Mr Ditko. But there’s one aspect I never paid much attention to before—the teeny-tiny Spidey figure at the top right of the opening splash page…

AF15 pg1

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Conan by Alex Toth

The third in an apparent “Conan by” series! (Following this and this.)

This one is from Savage Sword of Conan #64 (1981)—a tremendous issue that carries a 42-page lead story drawn by Big John, a “Chane” backup strip by Gil Kane, and… eight Conan pinup pages by the great Alex Toth, of which this is one.

Savage Sword 64 pinup

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Betty & Veronica: The Kiss

Another compare & contrast, this time with something all-new vs a 2016 original…

Both pieces were done for my friend, Nigel. It was his request & his concept… and I believe this “mythical kiss” might have actually been done for-real in an Archie comic in recent years. Not sure—I pay almost no attention to this stuff!

Anyhow, the composition I came up with in 2016 was A-OK—quite strong—but, my goodness, the execution & rendering was, IMO, absolutely appalling!! Even at the time I felt it was missing the mark, but my problems with it have grown exponentially with the passage of time.

So I deciced to redo it. Nigel deserved better.

Here’s the all-new 2021 version…

Nigel Betty-Veronica 2021

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