Nine Slices of KATANA

It was a bit arduous, but even when i was all over the place professionally, i still
found time to pencil and ink most of KATANA issue #9. The sole reason for taking the gig was Annie Nocenti. I’ve been in love with that woman’s talent since she started actively writing Daredevil back in the 90’s.
She put Daredevil and many other mainstream characters through their mental paces …. There was always some Hitcock-ian twist. Some crazy character. Some crazy storyline. And deep mentally penetrating dialog complete with its own event horizon.
I got to work with another childhood fantasy and it felt great.

By the way, her eyes are kinda wild, too. So guess i should be careful what i say or she’ll do to me what she did to her luau’d pig. 🙂

I plan on pitching her some stuff soon, but i really want to work with her again on … Well…ANYTHING!

In the meantime, the Katana deadline was hellish, and a bit stressful at times. This one wasn’t easy.

But i did it for Annie’s Katana. As i said…. The time only allotted enough time for me to pencil and ink a certain amount of pages. And i wish i had it like Jack kirby…. You know…

…8 pages a day…

But i recognize my limitations.

The preview showed up on ComicBook Resources. But instead of taking you there…
I’ll keep you here by posting the preview HERE!

Enjoy!
And pick up the book this week!

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The NYCC walkthrough

I had to take a couple of runs through the famed Jacob Javitz Center in Manhattan and I was kind of miffed because some family members who wanted to be there couldn’t for various and UNDERSTANDABLE reasons.
 
 So I used the power of the iPhone 5 to record the entrez-vous process getting into the con… Which according to Alan Harper on Two and a half Men means “enter you.”
 
 Yeah. He’s a dope.
 
 So I recorded Thursday and Saturday of the Con to show the difference in the limits of mass capacity in fire codes.
 
 And the occasional celebs and unintentional butt shots.
 
 I tell you this, girl dressing up in cosplay are a world different than they were in the nineties.
 
 And thank God for THAT. 🙂
 

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Location:Manhattan

VALIANT NEWS: A time for ETERNAL KICKING

I’ve been kind of bouncing around for awhile. Doing some great projects here and there and I don’t really see that stopping soon. Many people have asked me about my cosmic meanderings from working on Green Lantern Corps to Smallville (where I got to set the designs for the Smallville Batman and NightWing …. And boy did fanboys become annoying about the NightWing thing…lol) to Valiant’s BLOODSHOT#0 to drawing Katana for DC’s Villain month as well as pencilling and inking most of Katana issue 9.
During that time,I had been pretty split in my focus because the main thing was accomplishing my dream of finally not just owing my own transmedia company, but finally getting it it’s own website…a place to finally have a home for housing some IP’s I’ve been putting together since I was 17.
And now that is finally accomplished. More on that on my next blog.
I have been in talks with Valiant and I’m looking to settle in a bit. As long as Valiant will throw work at me, I’ll keep slinging the art. They have a great scheduling system, and great characters…. ingredients to make a great cake, let me tell you. I will finally get time to do the work I’ve wanted to do, and not the type of work where I have to rush and hurt my work (and potentially myself) to make crazy deadlines. I think I’ve come to the point where although I can’t say it won’t happen again, I’m getting too old to be doing these all-nighters and working all day, everyday, and weekends.

I have to be smarter nowadays.

I need to love myself more.

There’s great things that are in the works that will be primed to explode if I plan everything right and I really take care of myself.

So these will be the next following years of ME.

I’ve been back logged a bit so I have a ton to blog about. So I hope you’ll stick around while I plot to make some history. 🙂

I will be working on some Archer and Armstrong for Valiant. And I’m sure they have bigger things planned for me and I’ll post those plans and art when it’s primed to go. Stick around, guys. !!

Now pardon me while I lay down a bit…;)

Cross

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ChrisCross is dreaming VALIANT!

YES!!!

ChrisCross will be at NYCOMICCON! I’m talking about me in third person again.

I will be there signing with the guys at Valiant Entertainment for my stint on BLOODSHOT 0 and most likely some future work that I’m partaking as I type this. There is much to talk about and a lot to catch up on and i will endeavor to keep up the pace in creating these posts.

If you’d like to catch me at the Con, the booth number for Valiant is Booth #2028 inside the Javitz Center in Midtown Manhattan – and they’re bringing along a boatload of exclusive giveaways, all-new convention-only items, and superstar talent to celebrate their biggest NYCC ever!!

Okay… So thats not my voice and i ripped that. But i could have said it….:)

My schedule for the Con are as follows:

Thursday October 10 7 pm

Friday October 11 12pm

Saturday October 12 1pm signing 4pm panel

Sunday October 13 11am signing

I hope to see you guys there because i will be making the rounds letting people know about my company website going live on SATURDAY. the company is named ETERNAL KICK and it will be out there for people to see FINALLY!

And guaranteed Archer will be poking me trying to annoy me.

Tah tah for for now, guys!!!

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MILESTONE MEDIA’s 20TH YEAR MAKING MILESTONES

Some time ago, people started talking about Milestone Media on a consistent basis. Usually when it has to do with someone trying to do a concept that was either video game related or something to do with a comic with the way that certain comic company handled their characters of cultural descent the arrow will point to the bullseye in the middle of the target….Milestone. When people learned that DC was actually thinking about killing off Green Lantern John Stewart, an outrage began followed by an” I wish Milestone was publishing books again, because the Milestone gang would care about Stewart if they had him” type of sentiment. And then I realized. Even though Milestone had stopped publishing and finally absorbed, if it weren’t for Milestone, no one would have a standard in which to care. Or some safe place to put that thought of that kind of concept. Milestone owning the rights of John Stewart?

Imagine that.

Well, Milestone Media who was comprised of DWAYNE MCDUFFIE, CHRISTOPHER PRIEST, DENYS COWAN, MICHAEL DAVIS, and DEREK DINGLE was making history creating a haven and a niche that should have always been a part of the history of comics were out performing all who would try to ride the coat-tails of those trying to do the same thing but were amateurs with misguided concepts, to say the least, they were also giving people like myself a venue to sharpen our craft and hold up to the well-established publications that were already on the highway. The great thing is that what we were doing was so needed that people were scrambling to jump in on the action knowing somehow that, in its own way, was the Ponce de Leon of comics publication. And there were those who did whatever it took to keep it from being bigger.
Regardless, we did our job. We told the stories, we created the characters, we made the noise…we carved our names in the rock. And now, people are studying from that rock to get what exactly we did to create that indelible mark.
And now those fans of comics that actually were around to see what a Milestone Media had to offer… The LUCKY ones… Are in a fit knowing that there are those who attempt the same magic with the same characters and seem to come short. Mostly because they keep trying to do those characters the way comics are done, but not the way Milestone set the tone.
We get to talk about all of that this weekend at ECBACC. We and the people in the flyers below are going to talk about their experiences working wi a group of people that had the greats in comics and in Hollywood coming down to see what the hubbub was all about. And walking away with smiles on their faces with Milestone comics in their hands.

In Philadelphia, we’re going to be reminding everyone why Milestone is and was so special 20 years later and why, more than anything else, we need to keep that miracle and its practices going in our own way with our new ventures.

I think the brothers we lost in the journey will be smiling themselves.

Dwayne McDuffie, Robert Washington III, Maddie Blaustein….

This is for you. 🙂

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The sport of being Valiant

When Valiant announced that they were back in a position to be publishing books again, I think It took some people aback, those who were old enough to remember the first cache of the Valiant model… which was back in the 90’s.

Taken aback, but not in a bad way.

Back then, I was just getting out of School of Visual arts and I was working near full-time hours at a law firm in upper Manhattan. I decided that I was done with the 9-5 nonsense of the constant political pressures of the land of Esquire and I was going my own way. I had an appointment with the first echelon of Valiant that housed Bob Layton, Jim Shooter, and a ton of then-beginners who are now either high rollers (meaning doing work with animation or movies for “Hollywood”), Marvel/DC veterans, or doing their own thing. Then I discovered Milestone Media. In some weird turn in time, I could have easily been working with the Shooter gang instead of Club McDuffie.

Hey, it’s nice to have had options!

One of my great regrets though was never getting a chance to jump on any of those books. I kind of see the new Valiant as the Golden State Warriors. The new guys with a lot to prove going up against two big franchises like the Lakers and the Celtics and some really notable teams that make a ton of noise jostling for the third spot. I’ve had many discussions about Valiant’s new splash on the scene and myself and others really think they’re going to be surprising a lot of people soon enough when they’re the set party for that third spot. They just seem to have their stuff together, and they appear to know what they want and what it’s going to take to get there. And they have a possibility to bring in new readers. There’s a newness with all the characters and I think that’s what is needed to rejuvenate the comics market. Hopefully it will inspire others to put their two cents in to start a new renaissance.

The cool thing is I now have an opportunity to put my two cents in with Bloodshot #0.

I want to take my time with this one and really make it stand out from any other work that I’ve done before. It’s going to be the road to some great work that I’m planning that’s going to set new roads for me. And sometimes I just get tired of my own work, so I have to add new influences to freshen me and my muse up again. And I’ve been hustling to get better for awhile now. So I hope you like what I offer in my splash on Bloodshot. I’ll post that cover as soon as I get the go.

You can check out the link on my mention here and get warmed up for an origin of Bloodshot you may not have read before.

I team up with Matt Kindt whose bringing his own style of storytelling to the mix.

Hope you like what we put together soon!

Cross.

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Helping out the Superboy

In the newest issue of Superboy,(#20), I got to help out the editor by doing the last five pages. It was again as crazy a schedule as one could have and I had to throw in 1/4 ChrisCross, and 3/4 rush job. But I never got to draw Superboy in any version in my life…. So you know when asked, I had to jump on it. And also you can see I aided and abetted Superboy’s BEATDOWN.

Hey, He wins in the end.

Don’t worry. 🙂

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WHAT WE CROSS’s HAVE TO BEAR

As an artist, you have to see things in the ether, then explain it on paper or some other medium to get your point across. Me, I use continuity format in verbal and graphic form….
Nick CROSS uses animation. It’s obvious to me what he’s saying without saying it….
…. And it equals and sums up to “no matter what you try to do, it’s the same crap every day. It makes the world go ’round.”

But it does make you think about what you’re into and how you contribute. It’s an animation called PERIHELION.
Now…. You’ll either think that Nick Cross is nuts because of weed addiction….

…. Or that he has the balls to “say” things no one will say.

He was working on a film named Black Sunrise. And if he stopped doing that to create something like this, it was something that kept him up nights until he got it out of his system.

Now…. See what Crosses like us wrought.

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WHAT FANS CAN DO

I was first blown away with what a fanbase can do when I saw the fan film of a guy who wanted to redo the opening film intro to BladeRunner. It was cool. Very moody. Very Artsy. And it fit. But would never be used. And I’m sure that was cool with him/her. But it begs the thought that if you don’t like what you see, or you dream of something funkier than what exists already, isn’t it cool that with computer applications and social networking principles, you can accomplish that and show everyone?
Hey, you never know whose watching, right?

I was linked to this cool as heck animation from a studio called Blackmeal. And I guess they thought, “Wouldn’t it be cool if we came up with a funky intro to the Marvel block on the Disney XD channel?”

It’s really something to see. Simple but very action-oriented.

I hope Disney looks at it.

Check it out!

BLACKMEAL – MARVEL from BlackMeal on Vimeo.

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The GREEN LANTERN CORPS TOUR OF DUTY

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To say that doing this issue was a cakewalk would be the lie of the century considering the time allotted to complete it. With Hurricane Sandy, that hybrid storm had pretty much shut everyone down. I was coming home from a much needed vacation and the lights and power had just come on as I literally walked in the door of my apartment.
Poor Peter Tomasi hadn’t had any power until a couple of days later.
And time was dwindling in which to make the deadline that was set to get this annual out.
But when the script started to file in, it was all about getting the talented Scott Hanna and Marlo Alquiza to get the inking done… And they did great work considering the time we had to get it done. I’m pretty sure that Wil Moss, the editor, has had an excuse to use Just For Men after that process. Me, I just shaved my head bald. :)Peter Tomasi, I feel, is doing something with GLC that separates this book from the other Green Lantern books. It’s oviphagy translate as space opera. It’s cinematic and prolific. It’s a movie in every book. And it shows in the current work that artist Fernando Basarin accomplishes in every page.
So I had to step up my game a bit. But there’s only so much one can do when time is limited. (Mind you,this is me never being satisfied. 🙂 )
With the inkers doing their thing, the glue that made this book really pull was Wil Quintana. His pastel hued palette reminds me of watching the really cool anime of the past. Like watching Mighty Orbots. And it would work like gangbusters over the work I was producing on this book.
I’m still apologizing to him for the extra double-splash page I did on top of the myriad of other double-splashes in this book. He had to color both and then sandwich them together.
There were a ton of double-splash sequences in this book that I’m about to post with this entry and I just thought it would be great for you guys to look at the work unencumbered by lettering, so you can get the idea of the breadth of work that went into getting the book done.
I hope you enjoyed it as much as we did doing it. Even if Peter Tomasi is a madman. And Fernando. 🙂