I haven’t been blogging much over the course of the pandemic, but despite challenging times it has been a productive year for my studio work. I made a conscious choice to step away from illustrating nonfiction graphic novels, the bread and butter of my freelance, in pursuit of fictional storytelling and worldbuilding, a desire I’ve had since I started out as a freelancer about 18 years ago.
One project in particular has taken on an unexpected life of its own. I met a writer online just before the summer of 2020 and we started having weekly zoom meetings. It started as a work-for-hire comic illustration gig, but the organic nature of the collaboration allowed me to invest more heavily into the way the story was being told mainly because I wasn’t working off a script, but rather ideas for scenes and story ideas.
A long story short, the project has evolved into a passion project for me. I’ve put hundreds of hours into bringing it to life and even flew out to Chicago to meet the writer in person. Seven White and I have completed a 40 page Part One of the story we’re telling and the time has come for us to start sharing it with readers. I ask that you consider helping us realize our dream to continue the journey of this project. It’s going to be self-published and creator-owned, so we need the support to make it happen. Pleasesign-up for the email listandfollow the instagram page to stay up to date with our progress. I can’t thank you enough for your support.
I notice I’m getting traffic on my website for the Star Wars in Ancient Greece illustrations I drew in 2015. If you are new to my website, welcome! Thanks for your interest. If are interested in getting a print or t-shirt or a mug or doormat or shower curtain or various other items with my Star Wars drawings, I can direct you to my Artist Shop. I currently only have two images available. If you would like to see some of the others made available, please leave a comment. Thank you and remember : “The Fourthsurrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter.You must feel theFourth around you; here, betweenyou, me, the tree, the rock, everywhere, yes.”
Please join us 10th Annual NYCC x MCM Metaverse Charity Art Auction to benefit the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital!Have Fun. Get Art. Save Lives. You Can Make A Difference!
I’m contributing this piece to the auction going on now. If you’re a fan of the Mandalorian, Cara Dune, and Baby Yoda (and really who isn’t?), and have the means to donate to this worthy cause, please check it out! The details are listed below including a link to all the impressive art available.
A funny thing happened on the way to the Crown of Axis arena. Wade’s request for a cover image featuring two powerful female gladiators had been executed in style by Aaron McConnell:original sketch
For a change, Aaron decided to hand-paint the piece, old school instead of digital. That turned out to create a delivery problem. At first, the paints wouldn’t dry. Well, they dried a bit, but the yellow was taking a loooooong time. Then Aaron’s scanner tech couldn’t pick up the colors he’d painted with properly. Neither could Aaron’s photos.
drying on the easel
So Aaron went over to Lee Moyer’s house, since they were working together on a different project and Lee has a Serious Scanner. And if you know Lee, you know Lee’s super-power—he had suggestions. They got the piece scanned and then worked together on the paints, turning a high-noon situation into an evening showdown. Aaron held onto the piece for another couple weeks, but he has overcome separation anxiety and is calling it done!
Crown of Axis cover by Aaron McConnell, with paints assist by Lee Moyer
This issue is a surprising delight. “Ricardio Arrythmia” turns a simple concept into something simultaneously unusual and slightly moving. McConnell’s art and lettering is a unique twist for Adventure Time, and while some panels almost look like something out of Aqua Teen Hunger Force, that only adds to the charm.
— Jenna Anderson (for Comic Book Reviews at Comicbook.com)
Adventure Time Comics #21 has been available at comic shops for a couple weeks now. This is the first comic work for a licensed property that I’ve written and illustrated. I wasn’t too familiar with the expansive universe of Adventure Time a year ago, but my son and I watched many episodes and had a good time following Finn and Jake through the rich tapestry of the world and its various dimensions. The Adventure Time Comics series, for those not familiar, is a monthly comic book anthology that allows contributing creators to play with the source material and interpret it in any manner they prefer. Once my pitch concept was approved, I was given cart blanche with very little editorial interference. I’m grateful to Matt Levine the assistant editor at BOOM! who thought I’d be a good candidate for the book. I’m also thankful for my sounding boards during the writing process, Jim Berry and Dan McConnell, both of whom contributed ideas to the story.
Now for some preview pages from the 12 page story, and below the color art are some of the original pages for those interested in the process. Further below are some sketchbook drawings that were done in the early stages of development along with rough layouts and miscellaneous scribblings. Cue the intro song to Adventure Time and “come along with me…”
Day 17 of 13th Age at bundleofholding.com. The Island of Omen original charcoal drawing and the final art found on page 276 of the 13th Age Core Book (with some unusual yellow streaking in the photo…I can’t explain it other than to say strange things happen when you’re dealing with the Island of Omen).