a new project and a humble request

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. Please sign-up for the email list and follow the instagram page to stay up to date with our progress. I can’t thank you enough for your support.

10th Annual NYCC x MCM Metaverse Charity Art Auction

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!

11″ x 17″ original ink drawing on archival bristol board.

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.

Auction Starts: October 2 – 12:00 pm EST

Auction Ends: October 11 – 8:00 pm ESTLocation: https://vfundraise.net/NYCC20#page=1&category=29361

Thanks you for your attention and consideration!

Adventure Time Comics #21

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…”

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NYCC Artist Alley A4, (“A” for Aaron, “4” for four double letters in my name)

 

If you’re in New York and headed for the Comic Con, you can find me in the Artist Alley at Booth A4.  I plan to be at the booth all 4 days interrupted only by a few events scheduled (see below).  Mike Smith, the co-author/brewer of The Comic Book Story of Beer will be joining me Saturday and Sunday. Come talk drawing and beer with us!

  • Saturday 10/8

I will be signing The Comic Book Story of Beer with Mike Smith at the PRH/Crown Booth #2210, Time: 3:30 pm

  • Sunday 10/9
Comics in Real Life
Time: 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Location:   BookCon @ NYCC – 500 W 36th Street

  • Monday 10/10

Post-NYCC Author Coffee Klatsch

Time: 11:00AM-1:00PM (revolving door event)
Location: Random House offices—1745 Broadway, NYC 10019 (between 55th and 56th streets)
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The original ink drawing of this image of Dr Strange, the Home Brewer, will be included in the NYCC Charity Art Auction benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.  The details are available at this link along with images of all the other contributions:http://www.newyorkcomiccon.com/Events/NYCC-Charity-Art-Auction/

The Charity Auction is Saturday night (10/8) at 6:45pm in room 1A18. Below is the B/W original:

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In addition to selling books and original artwork at my Booth (A4), I also look forward to the opportunity to draw commissions.  Below are some examples of 13th Age drawings. Thanks for your time and attention.  Hope to see you at NYCC!

Charlie Who?

Here’s a piece of fan art celebrating the subject of Sonny Liew’s graphic novel The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye that is sending shockwaves through the very medium of comics itself!  You gotta check this out, but don’t take my word for it, take it from NPR:

At once dizzyingly meta and deeply heartfelt, the book spans 80 years and in its complicated layering remind me of everything from “Maus” and “The Tin Drum” to, believe it or not, “Ulysses.”

Link to Listen to the Story at NPR

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New York Comic Con Booth 1248

NYCC starts October 8 this week and I will be meeting up with my co-authors!  Jonathan and Mike have been on the road since we debuted The Comic Book Story of Beer in Denver.  They’ve been in Minneapolis, MN at DANGEROUS MAN BREWING COMPANY, Iowa City at BACKPOCKET BREWING COMPANY, Kansas City, MO at BARNES & NOBLE, Chicago, IL at BEERMISCUOUS CRAFT BEER CAFE, and Toronto Canada at THE BEGUILING BOOKS AND ART / PAGE & PANEL: THE TCAF SHOP. Today they’ll be in Ann Arbor, MI at NICOLA’S BOOKS, tomorrow in Akron, OH at LIZARDVILLE BEER STORE & WHISKEY BAR/BARNES & NOBLE, and then Oct. 8-11 for NEW YORK CITY COMIC CON.  It doesn’t even end there!  Check the WEBSITE for the complete list.

You can also find some of the REVIEWS for the book with a plethora of sample pages like these found at suntimes.com:

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RCCC in One Week

I’m looking forward to RCCC next Friday, but examining my inventory of The Comic Book Story of Beer comps, I’m afraid I may not have enough to get me through the weekend.  It looks like I’m just shy of 20 copies and since the book won’t be officially released until Sept 22nd, I’ll have to go with what I’ve got.  If you’re planning to be at RCCC and want to ensure that you’ll be able to pick up a copy while supplies last, drop me an email and we can work out the details.  I’m also up for doing a sketch in the book beforehand if you order ahead of time.  During the con I probably won’t do much beyond a signature and a quick doodle, but if you want something more like the examples below, please contact me this week.

It’s an  exciting time for The Comic Book Story of Beer.  Reviews are starting to trickle in like this ARTICLE on suvudu.com!  It’s great to hear that people are enjoying it!  Cheers!

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