019 – True Blood

tb

So via Facebook and in the real world, several of my friends (many of them female) have gone on and on about how awesome the show True Blood is. To be honest, my love of vampires only goes so far, and the genre of brooding romantic vampires can all go fuck off. While I was certainly a fan of the show Angel, I never got into Buffy. Watching Angel was more like watching a Batman TV show, which I am 100% in support of. Everyone else, if you want to show me vampires, I prefer the crazy mutant vampire-killing vampires of Blade 2. God I love that movie.

I also recommend the Charlie Huston Joe Pitt vampire/noir book series. It’s definitely not about brooding and more about kicking ass. It’s a hardboiled detective series, but with vampires. Read ’em.

Anyhoo. So these folks who kept telling me to watch True Blood, sold me on it with three little words: Anna Paquin naked. I like an Anna Paquin. One of my very few celebrity crushes. But the problem was, it’s still True Blood, and I’m certainly not going to waste a Netflix shipment on it, or the money spent at my local brick’n’mortar video store (plus 90% of their DVDs are scratched to shit and won’t play. Thanks, FAMILY VIDEO!). So my friend Stephanie stepped up and let me borrow her copy of Season 1, in exchange for borrowing S1 of Dexter.

She got the better end of the deal.

It’s not a terrible show, but it’s just okay. It’s engaging enough, and as I kinda alluded to in the Get Smart post, I like having seasons of TV shows on DVD when I draw. It’s a pleasing enough show that I can keep on and only marginally pay attention to.

The show’s biggest problem is that I really cannot give enough of a flying fuck about any of the main characters, particularly any of the vampire characters. They’re pretty much all awful. What saves the show for me is the secondary and the background characters. They have tons of personality and a degree of fun.

The three characters I drew are Lafayette, Terry and Sam, possibly the three biggest redeeming qualities of True Blood. I would totally support a spin-off show with those three guys. Maybe they’d drive around America, solving mysteries and fighting crime. Maybe they’d all move to L.A. to try to start a band. I don’t know, but I’d totally fuckin’ watch it.

All that said, I’m mostly done with Season 2 now, and it’s a metric fuck ton better than S1, but it’s still mostly bad and filled with horrible, cardboard main characters. The background characters are all awesome, though, and have really shined. And also, not nearly enough of Anna Paquin naked. So screw you Stephanie, Shiloh and Amanda. I mean that in the best way possible.

017 – Joker

joker

I have a habit of making doodles of The Joker, and trying different styles and looks when I do. This is one.

016 – Maxwell Smart

Smart

Even before I started posting everyday, I had been watching the show Get Smart on DVD as I draw. I recently started on Season 2. I still don’t particularly like the show, or find it all that funny, but I find it really pleasant to have on while I work.

I also noticed, while looking at photo reference, that Maxwell Smart/Don Adams shares a lot of physical similarities with former Justice League International benefactor and current DCU boogeyman Maxwell Lord.

Just sayin’.

015 – Aztek

Today is my friend Joe Grunenwald’s birthday. I’ve known Joe for over 10 years or so. We worked together briefly at Maverick’s, our local comic shop. He was still in high school, and I was otherwise unemployed, recently fired from my first “career” job out of art school. I always liked Joe, but for whatever reasons, it has only been within the past year that we have actually hung out with each other beyond the occasional run-in at the comic shop, and my life certainly is the better for it.

Joe is quite possibly the funniest human being I’ve ever met and has an encyclopedic knowledge of most things comic book and geeky. Hanging out with him is always a joy and talking with him is always a pleasure, which is why I eventually asked him to be the co-host of my second podcast, League Night, in which we are watching every episode of the Justice League cartoon and talkin’ about ’em. He has also been a guest on, and guest-hosted an episode, of my first podcast, Gutter Trash.

One of the many, many things Joe and I have in common is a shared love for Grant Morrison, and Aztek in particular. Aztek was a book that Morrison co-wrote with Mark Millar and lasted about 10 issues. It’s hard to imagine a world where that would happen, but there you go. This also happened around a time when DC Comics published some of the greatest books they have every published – every single one of them canceled within a year. The lucky ones made it roughly two years. Morrison brought Aztek into his run on the JLA comic, and sacrificed him in his final storyline, making Aztek one of the rare superheroes who have never returned to life.

A long time ago, when I was taking requests for characters to draw for the blog, Aztek was among the many characters on the long list that Joe G. gave me. So Aztek is scratched off in celebration of Joe G.’s birthday.

Joe is a writer currently showing off his talents on the blog he shares with his wife, Jennie, Joe and Jennie in the Morning!, where they are reviewing numerous television shows, including X-Files, Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, and Sports Night. Check it out and check out League Night.

Happy Birthday, Joe!

014 – Owl

Owl

It’s an owl.

013 – Rollins Power Sauce

Henry Rollins essentially saved my life. 10 years ago or so, my girlfriend at the time dumped me and I was pretty sure there was no point to anything anymore. My friends all did their best to make sure I stayed busy and helped keep my mind off the situation, but I had to be alone at some point. One such friend gave me a bunch of Rollin’s spoken work tapes, and another friend gave me some Black Flag records. For about two months, I’d say that’s pretty much all I listened to, and it helped me get through the rough patches and eventually move on. It also made me a huge Rollins fan.

Henry turns 50 today. Happy Birthday, Rollins.

012 – Here there be Dragons

Savage Dragon

Part of the whole daily thing is that I want to try to do different things with the sketches/art. Whether I fail or not is inconsequential.

By the way, I chalk this up as a failure.

Anyhow, Savage Dragon. When Image Comics first started, Erik Larsen’s Savage Dragon quickly became my favorite out of the bunch. I had loved Larsen’s work on Spider-Man, and was eager to see his own creation. Not to bash the other Image founders, but you could tell that Larsen loved what he did, and loved Dragon far more than the other guys did for their own. I think the simple fact that, almost 20 years later, he’s still doing his own book, let alone one of the only ones even still actively making comics at all, speaks for that.

I stopped reading Savage Dragon about six, seven years ago. Something changed – either in myself or in Larsen’s creative approach – and found I simply wasn’t enjoying the book anymore. Despite that, I don’t think I can put into words just how much respect I hold for Erik Larsen as a creator and an artist, and how much of an influence he is on me. Obviously his influence is limited, otherwise I’d have motivated myself to produce actual work over the past decade.

But that’s my problem, not his.

011 – Masked Man

mask

Post-it note sketch done in ball-point pen. I think it’s supposed to be Mr. Miracle.

010 – Prince Namor on the tube

Namor

Tried to do something loose with pen and marker, added the color in Photoshop.

As a bonus, I’ve added another Namor drawing I did a few years back. Click on to see more.

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