Saturday, December 26, 2009

Orthodox Man

Back in the day when I started drawing Dorks I created Orthodox Man. I had no idea what the word meant but just thought it sounded cool. Later when a teacher explained it to me I still don't think I really understood it but his origin story was that he was a priest and he was outside doing stuff and a big fireball hit him. Thus giving him powers. In the one picture you can see Orthodox Man fighting Attitude who is not sporting his signature "horn" and for some reason he's wearing a cape. And they're in the mountains. My friend at the time put his character in the background who was also a type of silly hero who's power was a stretching neck. So there he is trying to save a guy from falling but at the same time there's a bunch of rocks about to crush him. We were real genius' back then huh.

I don't know why Orthodox Man is sporting a "Have A Nice Day" chest emblem nor a smiley face with an arrow thru it on his arm. I think I was just throwing stuff together just for the sake of it. His adventures were short lived and he never really stayed in the Dorks universe. He won't be missed and nobody will care and quite frankly, neither will I. :)

As I was doing this post I was sketching Orthodox Man. I guess sometimes you just feel a bit nostalgic.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Before Instant Press. Before Idiot Press, there was...

...Rene Comics! I know. Real original. You should see the credits inside. I listed each chore and put my name under each one. Story: Rene, Pencils: Rene, Letters: Rene and so on and on. I must've restarted Dorks so many times over but this is one of the few that I never really reproduce or show. Not that I'm ashamed of it but it's hard to get good scans of it cause of the pencil work. I could only find a copy of issue 1 and the quality is terrible. If I can find the original version I'll scan it and post it for people to see. It was a 12 page story and pretty much was the same thing as the first issue from Idiot Press. Maybe one day I'll post the seldom seen third try of the series. Yes, there was a third attempt. Same cover, same story etc.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Mist of the Caped Wonder #2...sorta

I was preparing the next issue of MOCW but something wasn't working out on some of the pages. For some reason my settings changed on me out of the blue and everything I converted got all pixelated and crappy. *Holds for jokes* I'll just be posting the pages that successfully made it and explain a bit until I can get the rest of the pages sorted out properly.

In this installment the Idiots went on their search for the remaining Dorks members. In their hunt they were ambushed by the Mr Men and Little Miss group. Oh Noes!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Mist of the Caped Wonder Issue #1

Mist of the Caped Wonder was an odd idea for a book. What made it even more odd was that I did this all in my sketchbook. I had penciled two twelve page issues and part of the third issue before getting bored. It was kind of a daily journal of comic panels that I would do at my job at the time. I had a choice of either arriving three minutes late or one hour early everyday and after getting written up for the three minutes I decided to just do the one hour. In that hour I would draw this comic. The idea was that it was post-Dorks. The gang has disbanded and the members have moved on with their lives. The Caped Wonder was the focus now and I made shure to throw in everything and the kitchen sink (kitchen sink not pictured) into this story. None of it was intended to make sense and to this day it still doesn't. One interesting thing though, I've been rewriting the Dorks story and there is an element in the MOCW that does take a big part in the main story. I can't wait to reboot that series once and for all. For now, here's the first issue of Mist of the Caped Wonder.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

New for 2010...not really.

As I was lettering the original series of Dorks, I got a bit caught up at looking at the panels. With each page I kept looking at the art and just thinking to myself, "What the hell was I trying to do in that panel?". With each page I got more and more of an itch to redraw the whole darn book. I had even started redrawing panels here and there on whatever scratch paper I had available. One day I finally had it and I just took all the pages, popped them in a box and picked one at random. Issue 2 page 8 is what came out and that's the page I redrew to get over my itch. I don't think it helped since I feel like redrawing the whole series again but at least I got something out of the way. Check out these before and after shots. You'll know exactly what I mean.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Scripting/ Thumbnails

As many comic book artist do, I did a thumbnail version of the Dorks issues before actually drawing it. Looking back, I'd love to get into this habit since I can look back at these notes and know exactly what was going on. I have some later stuff of Dorks where I just drew the book as I went along but there are missing pages here and there and missing dialogue and I can't make heads or tails of what was supposed to happen or what was to be said. I did this type of scripting for Bride of the Wolfman but it was all loosely done. I was able to work nicely off of it though and having an actual script helped out tons. Here's a look a the first issues script and thumbnails. Apparently once I finished the book I signed the script and dated it and wrote whatever song was playing on the radio when I drew it. Odd times I tell ya.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Collector's Image

Back in the day my first outsource for comics was a local shop called Collectors Image. That store was what I still believe comic book shops should be. It really was a hangout and the environment was great. The decor was top notch memorabilia and there were just rows upon rows of comic books. This is actually the first comic book store that fed and fueled my every indy need. I was opened up to fantastic worlds of Usagi Yojimbo, The Tick, ZOT!, The Crow, Tales of the Beanworld, Scud the Disposable Assassin and on and on. I can just keep on name dropping all the hot indy books that the world later discovered and fell in love with.
The store owner was kind enough to allow me to set up a little stand on his counter and display and sell my comic book, Dorks. This was really a time where I felt I was part of the business. I was even featured in their newsletter and did an in store signing.

I had the opportunity to have that similar experience recently at Alternate Reality ( and it's something that I don't think I'd ever get tired of. When there are comic shop owners out there that care that much about the industry it puts a smile on my face.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Guest pinup artist

I just wanted to post this pinup that Stan Tanaka has done for the tenth anniversary edition of the Dorks collected. Just as a bit of a story here, it seems he "borrowed" the scene from Dorks issue 3. Since I never got very far with the series or the stories I'll just let you know what was going on here. Back in the day it was "cool" and "hip" to have mysteries upon mysteries in your stories. That's what sold. Just throwing a bunch of meaningless crap out there and having some huge origin behind it later on. In this case, the passing between Latitude and this lady was a minor encounter between mother and son. It was to be later revealed that she had abandoned him because of how he turned out.

...I'm really glad those days are over of pointless origin crap.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Jumping Ahead - Bride of the Wolfman

It's been ages since I've completed an actual full comic. In 2002 and 2003 I did two short Dorks stories that were 4 pages each. Other then that, not much had happened. In 2004 Dave Gruba asked me to partner up with him on a project of his. Bride of the Wolfman. We've never worked together on a project despite the long history we've had together in publishing. Even on Grubbmaster Pieces I did my own stuff, which was funny cause I remember a guy that Dave tapped to contribute to the book but he wanted him to draw White Knife. That guy complained to me how he wanted to do his own stuff like I was doing. Old times...
Getting back on track I just wanted to point out that I have done something new. It feels good but now that the work is done, I feel like I was let go from a job. I just don't know what to do with myself. I had all these plans of course to work on Dorks and other things but coming rite off Wolfman I just feel drained and energized at the same time. Everything that I had held back on working on so that this project was done is now trying to find its way out and I can't focus on what to do first. I'm shure though by the end of the week I'll have an idea. :p

Here's a look at the cover and I'll post some sketches and pages later on.
Thanks everybody and thank you Dave. It was fun and a great project to work on. It helped me focus more on the task at hand and gave me some new experience on how to work.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Skipping Dorks

When Dave approached me about doing a comic for his zine I agreed. At the same time, I was a bit afraid that he would steal Dorks from me. Instead, I "gave" him my other characters that I had been working on. Imp, Karloff and Razor would be the three rulers of Razura. These guys were the bad guys to the galaxy known as the Killiverse. It wasn't very thought out and I was just working off the old comics that I used to draw on notebook paper. To my surprise, everybody seemed to like them and an even bigger surprise to me was actually seeing them in print with other creators/ characters. There they were. My highschool (yes I was still in highschool at this point) characters come to life in print and being distributed across town. I was postive that the only way to go from here was up.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Letter

Just a short update. This is the actual letter Dave sent me when Grubbmaster was going thru its hardships. This has to be one of the most professional letters I've ever received in the comic book community still to this day. I've modeled most of my practices in the biz after the guidance of Dave in his zine days.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

In with the old, out with the new

Recently I had some down time due to being a bit sick. While being bored at home I decided to pick up on a project I started a year ago. I was redrawing the covers for the Dorks second series. I originally did these stories after Dave canceled Grubbmaster Pieces. He offered as a form of payment to print out ashcan sized copies of any project I wanted. I think it was something like, 5o copies of 1 book or 25 copies of 2 different books etc. I jumped at the opportunity and went right back to the drawing board and started work on my latest Dorks saga. I had written the scripts and laid out the covers and did thumbnail sketches of the pages of the books. I got as far as finishing the first issue and half of the second issue. I guess at some point I must've reread what I had and realized how far removed the story was from what I had been doing. It mixed some of the characters in a way that any previous ideas I had were never going to work out in this continuity. Needless to say I scrapped the entire project. Here is a look at the original covers of that short lived series and the new up to date covers that I did.Just so you know, the next series of Dorks is the one that is currently collected. I did 5 full issues and part of issue 6. That series was going in the direction I wanted but I fizzled out quickly since issue 1 was done in 1995 (I believe) and issue six was being done in 1999 or 2000. The art was too different and I wanted to restart all over again. To this day we're still waiting.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

My First Show

Let me start off by saying Happy New Year. Not only is this my first post in two months but also the first post of the new year. I'm shure by now many of you readers are asking, "Why is any of this important?" or relevant. It's not really. I just wanted to write out a history of Idiot Press. It's more of a reminder to myself than anything else.

Moving on...
I'm guessing from the dates listed in the article (refering to the newspaper clipping) the first convention where I was a guest was in 1994. I really can't say that it was my first comic book convention signing though since this was a sports cards and comics convention. As I remember it there wasn't much in comics going on. David Gruba, my publisher at the time, set the whole thing up. He was even generous enough to give me a lift there. I don't remember much of what happened other than meeting Derrick Martin of Skunk and Sparrow fame. I'd have to check to see if he really did have any fame from the book. The books were oddly printed, as if they were done at a local printer. It was the only time I can remember that all of the people associated with Grubbmaster Pieces were in the same place. The artist for The Firing Squad, John Watson, the artist for Radioactive Roadkill (all David Gruba projects), Jerry I forget his last name and I were present to sign and discuss the upcoming zine. We were seated next to Derrick Martin whom I had fun talking to and he was the first person to ink one of my works and showed me that with the proper skills and tools my work could actually look decent. The one thing that is clear to me was when somebody came by and said (jokingly) "You can keep your piece of imagination" and walked away. Oh and I remember that there were no name badges. We just had wristbands or some junk and Dave made the whole group tags to wear and even got the plastic holders for us. If anything I believe this is where my hospitality to my group came from. Trying to give them the most experience as possible. I hope I've succeeded as much as Dave did.