Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Dec. 10th at The Comic Bug

If you are in the Los Angeles area, please swing by The Comic Bug on December 1oth to celebrate the release of the Hero Initiative's Hulk 100 Project hardcover book! I will be there signing and sketching with a bunch of great artists! Hope to see you all there!

WED., 10 DEC
6 PM-8 PM, signing with six artists: Joe Benitez, Scott Koblish, Bill Morrison, Tone Rodriguez, Aaron Sowd, Joe Rubinstein
At The Comic Bug
1807 1/2 Manhattan Beach Blvd.
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
310-372-6704
http://www.thecomicbug.com/

Then from 8-10 PM, if you wanna hang loose, it's the Comic Bug's Christmas party w/DJ, drinks, snacks, etc. Some other local artists (Richard Starkings, Mike Mignola, Josh Dysart, etc.) will likely show up as well if ya wanna hob-nob.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

CNN Overload


I usually only get my news from reliable sources such as The Daily Show, The Colbert Report or The Onion, but lately I've been addicted to CNN. Really addicted. And it's starting to worry me. I may need to cut back on my CNN viewing because every time I look at Ali Velshi I see this:Do you see it too? Dr. Honeydew! Thank God, I thought it was just me! No wonder I can't take him seriously. No one in real life has skin that orange! He's gotta be a Muppet, right?

Then there is the lovely Dana Bash. Every time I look at her I see:

The bird from Pixar's For the Birds, right? I'm not trying to be mean, maybe I just watch too many cartoons. Or too much CNN. So there!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Last Round of Card Commissions



If you still want a sketch card commission, you can get on the list for the Marvel Masterpieces Series 3 Artist Proof cards. I can also do plain old sketch cards as well if you want one of those. Email me for details at aaronsowd@mac.com. The Marvel Masterpiece Artist Proof cards are very limited, they only give 10 to each artist.







Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Hulk Smash! Last Chance!




I've already mentioned The Hero Initiative and their Ultimate 100 Hulk #1 Cover Project. My first cover raised over $700.00 for a great charity. But that is nothing compared to these two! The legendary John Romita Jr. donated two killer sketches which I was asked to embellish and color. What an honor, I grew up on John's stuff, I never thought I'd get to touch his original art! The first one below sold for over $1,000.00! The one above is being auctioned off now and ends soon! Please bid here if you can!

Variations on a Theme: Iron Man


Aw, Iron Man... my favorite character when I was a kid. Here are the last of the sketch cards for Upper Deck's Marvel Masterpieces series 3! I could have done all 20 cards of just Iron Man, but I burned out after 7 and decided to mix it up a bit! Wish I would have gotten to the cool JR JR "big ass boots" armor and Iron Man 2099. Those are both great designs! Here is the first suit of armor designed by Jack Kirby or Don Heck?

And again in gold circa Avengers #1.

I actually kind of liked the old pointy head version of the red and gold armor. Jack Kirby's design?

The "classic" version without the pointy head helmet.
Then the silver centurion armor designed by Mark Bright, I think...
And the badass black and silver War Machine armor...go Raiders!

And the most recent Ultimates armor designed by Bryan Hitch!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Variations on a Theme: Spider-Man

Here's the original classic Spidey. The key to a good Spider-Man is the armpit webbing! Don't forget the armpit webbing! It's the secret ingredient that is often overlooked!

My buddy Sean was complaining that I never update my blog. It's true, I get on a deadline which is replaced by another deadline (or three!) and yet another deadline. They multiply like Gremlins (don't get them wet!)! It never ends! But I can't complain, I'm getting paid to draw, how cool is that? So this post is for Sean: quitcherbitchin'!

Now back to my deadlines, be they many and unrelenting!

More sketch cards for Upper Deck's Marvel Masterpieces series 3 done in hurry... I did simple variations on each character I drew to save time! Who can forget the spiffy black costume from Secret Wars? Was that a Mike Zeck design? Zeck rules!

And the more recent costume from Civil War. It's not officially a Major Crossover Event until Spidey gets a new costume!I always loved me some Rick Leonardi. Severely underrated artist, IMO. The Spider-Man 2099 costume was the shiz-nit. Very, very cool and fun to draw!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Variations on a Theme: The Hulk

More sketch cards for Upper Deck's Marvel Masterpieces series 3 done in hurry... I did simple variations on each character I drew to save time! Here's the original classic gray Hulk as designed by Jack Kirby.
And the green Hulk we all know and love!
And the lesser known Mr. Fixit Hulk from his time as a mob enforcer in Las Vegas! Seriously, I'm not joking! From Peter David's run, look it up!

The new red Hulk from the recent Hulk #1 by Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuiness. Who is he? What does he want? Why is he red? What about the rest of the Hulk Rainbow Army? Oops, I've said too much... spoiler alert!
And we can't forget World War Hulk, the baddest Hulk of them all! He's like Hulk crossed with Conan if he was raised by Spartans and trained to fight by Russell Crowe. The Russell Crowe from Gladiator, not the Russell Crowe from A Beautiful Mind. Forget "Hulk Smash!" Now it's "Hulk crush enemies, see them driven before Hulk, and hear the lamentations of Hulk's women. Also, Hulk might like to be governor one day..."

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Variations on a Theme: Wolverine

I had to do a lot of original sketch cards for Upper Deck's Marvel Masterpieces 3 in a short amount of time, so I decided to do variations on each character I drew. Hey, it's easier than coming up with new poses every time! And think of all the cool costumes that Wolverine alone has had! Here's a few of my personal favorites. First, the John Cassaday costume from Astonishing X-Men.


Then there's the costume he took off of Fang, one of the Shi'ar Imperial Guard, during the Dave Cockrum or John Byrne run on X-Men when I was a little kid. I love that Claremont just added apostrophes to names to make them sound alien. Aa'ron S'owd. Sounds exotic!Then the Jim Lee take on the classic Kirby X-Men basic training suits. This was circa Uncanny X-Men #275, I think. Jim added a lot of belts/straps everywhere that served no purpose I could see, save looking really cool in an S&M kind of way!

Ah, the classic brown costume designed by Dave Cockrum, I believe. Is there a better costume designer than Dave Cockrum? Maybe Jack Kirby, but Dave has to be in the top tier!
Lastly, the Weapon X costume from the Barry Windsor Smith mini series. Can you really call this a costume? He's pretty much naked with a cool helmet and a few boxes hanging off him. I love the way BWS used color in that story and all the wires and pins sticking out of him are great (hard to draw on a tiny little card, though)!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Blitz: The League II Trailer

video
The trailer for Blitz: The League II is now online in HD. The game comes out from Midway at the end of September. I got to storyboard the trailer and a lot of the cinematics for the actual game. The animators at Midway went all out in bringing it to life. It's going to be kick-ass (if I do say so my own self)!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The First Five

Whew, that was fast! The Marvel Masterpiece Artist Proof cards sold out in less than two days! If you still want a sketch card commission, you can get on the list for the Series 2 Artist Proof cards which I should be getting soon from Upper Deck. I can also do plain old sketch cards as well if you want one of those. Email me for details at aaronsowd@mac.com. The Marvel Masterpiece Artist Proof cards are very limited, they only give 10 to each artist. Here's the first five of my commissions:

Thor for Thorsten in Germany!A recreation of Uncanny X-Men #141 for Kevin in California. I grew up on Byrne/Austin X-Men, so this was fun. Hard to fit all that detail on a tiny card, though!
A double shot of Wolverin and the Hulk for Billy who is stationed in Iraq. Hope you like them. Come home safe and sound and soon!
And a recreation of my recreation of Hulk #1 by Jack "King" Kirby for Paul in Maine. That's a lot of recreational recreation. OK, I'll shut up and get back to drawing now...

Saturday, June 28, 2008

We'll Miss You Michael



I just heard Michael Turner died last night. He was only 37. CBR reported that Mike passed away Friday night at 10:42 Pacific Time at Santa Monica Hospital in Calfornia after a long battle with cancer. The only thing that cheers me up is I know Mike lived more in those 37 years than most people do in 73 years. Ever since the first day he walked into Top Cow as Marc Silvestri's background assistant, we all knew he was destined for big things. Needless to say, that only lasted an issue or so, and Mike was soon off penciling books on his own, then co-writing and co-creating Witchblade and onto super stardom, going beyond Top Cow and creating his own company, Aspen Comics. All this before the age of 37. It's like he knew exactly what he wanted to do and made sure he had time to do it all. Mike always had a smile, a joke and contagious energy. He was so enthusiastic in everything he did, just tackled it head on. Even when he got sick, we all thought if anyone can beat it, Mike could. After all, he had overcome every other obstacle in his path with ease. We'll miss you, Mike. Thanks for the friendship and inspiration. Your time with us was too short, but you made it to heights most people only dream of.
UPDATE: I found this photo of the Top Cow gang from our first big signing at Golden Apple. Must be circa 1996 0r 1997. From left to right, the back row is boy wonder and editor Tim Hernandez, J.D. Smith and Nathan Cabrera. The front row Peter Steigerwald, Duy "D-Tron" Tron, Michael Turner, Brandon Peterson and Matt "Batt" Banning. I'm not in it because I took the photo! Damn, we look young! Those were good times. We'll miss you, Michael.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Accepting Commissions


OK, I usually don't have time to do commissions, but Upper Deck was nice enough to send me 10 Artist Proof cards (see above) for just that purpose. So what the heck, it'll be fun. But I only have 10 cards, so first come, first serve. Email me at aaronsowd@mac.com with your request. There's also a few rules I have to follow (see below) before emailing me. Thanks!

IMPORTANT NOTE on the AP (Artist Proof) cards- they must be scanned and sent in for approval before sale. They have both the Marvel and Upper Deck logo on them, and are considered licensed material. So the same rules as to what can be drawn on the regular sketch cards will apply to the artist proof cards. The last date these cards can be sent in for approval is November 20th. If for some reason your requested sketch is not approved, I will refund your money in full.

Rules* for the cards :
NO Nazi symbology (this includes Iron Crosses, Iron Eagles, swastikas, etc.)
NO zombie iterations of any Marvel character
NO nudity
NO gore or over the top violence
NO licensed characters (Rom, G.I. Joe, Transformers, or any other licensed property)
NO shots of any Marvel character smoking

*Marvel's, not mine!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Hulk Cover/Kirby Tribute


The Hero Initiative is putting together The Ultimate 100 Hulk #1 Cover Project. They picked 100 of the best comic book artists like Neal Adams, Jim Lee, Todd McFarlene, Dale Keown, Jae Lee, Bill Morrison, Joe Benitez, George Tuska, Bob McLeod, Sean Phillips and many more (yeah, I don't know how I got on that list, either!). Each artist did an original, one of a kind sketch in pencil, ink and marker (or some variation thereof!) on a blank variant sketch cover of Hulk #1. I think only 100 variant covers were printed especially for The Hero Initiative. A rare collectible if you can get one! They will be actioning them off a few at a time at comic conventions and on ebay. I'll try to post a link when mine goes up for auction. Please bid if you can, it's for a great cause! You can see a bunch of them on Marvel's site.

The Hero Initiative (Formerly known as A.C.T.O.R., A Commitment To Our Roots) has had the good fortune to grant over $200,000 to the comic book veterans who have paved the way for those in the industry today. They are a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to helping comic book creators in need of emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work. It's a chance for all of us to give back something to the people who have given us so much enjoyment.

I decided to go old school with my sketch, I love the original gray Jack Kirby Hulk most of all. He was huge and more of a creepy Frankenstein's monster than a straight-up super hero. I went back and looked at Kirby's original cover and decided a homage to The King was in order!

Thanks to Jim McLauchlin for getting me involved! It was a blast!