Tuesday, December 29, 2015
Sunday, December 27, 2015
Friday, December 25, 2015
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
The writer (Rob Kelly) didn't ask for a comic book style illustration. I just wanted to see what the comic book adaptation would have looked like if Al Williamson had drawn it thirty years ago. I thought it worked well if it were a deleted scene that made it into the Marvel adaptation.
Tuesday, December 22, 2015
Saturday, December 19, 2015
Thursday, December 17, 2015
Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Sunday, December 13, 2015
Friday, December 11, 2015
Wednesday, December 9, 2015
Monday, December 7, 2015
Saturday, December 5, 2015
Thursday, December 3, 2015
Tuesday, December 1, 2015
Monday, November 30, 2015
Thursday, November 26, 2015
Wednesday, November 25, 2015
Tuesday, November 24, 2015
Monday, November 23, 2015
Saturday, November 21, 2015
PAGE FIVE (8 panels)____________________
Panel 1: Duke McQueen stands in the background, holding his gun by the barrel like a baseball bat. In the foreground, Royal Guard 2 (his back is facing Duke McQueen) holds a rock; he looks up at KING PTERADAXAN (out of frame) terrified!
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: Throw that rock at me as hard as you can!
Panel 2: Royal Guard 2 throws the rock.
[1. NO WORDS NESSESSARY]
Panel 3: Duke McQueen hits the rock like a Louisville Slugger!
1. SFX: CRAK!
Panel 4: The rock collides with KING PTERADAXAN’s head. (Maybe show KING PTERADAXAN dropping the Zarnel Crystal towards the bottom of the frame.)
1. SFX: SMAK-OW!
Panel 5: Royal Guard 2in the foreground talks to Duke McQueen. Duke holds the Zarnel Crystal (glowing glass soccer ball) as he steps over the dragon’s tail.
1. ROYAL GUARD 2: I can’t believe you killed that thing with just a rock!
2. DUKE MCQUEEN: WE did. You’ve got a helluva arm.
Panel 6: Back to Earth. Back to Dad Duke McQueen talking to his sons; coffee in one hand, rolled up newspaper under his armpit. His two boys stand in the background.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: With the Crystal retrieved, Queen Attala was able to broker a peace treaty with the Zarnelli’s.
2. LARRY MCQUEEN: Yeah right, dad.
Panel 7: Larry and Ralph standing next to each other. Neither boy looks amused.
1. RALPH MCQUEEN: Nice story. Now are you going to help us get the ball down?
Panel 8: Duke McQueen looks over his shoulder at his boys. He sips from his coffee mug. Now he’s the one not amused.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: That thing? No way. I mean c’mon-
2. DUKE MCQUEEN: -it’s a soccer ball.
Thursday, November 19, 2015
PAGE FOUR (5 panels)____________________
Panel 1: KING PTERADAXAN (off panel) blasts at our two heroes. Duke “All-American” tackles Royal Guard 2 out of the way of the blast. Duke’s energy rifle disintegrates in the plume of fire. Show Royal Guard 2’s energy rifle flying away from the tackle.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: Look out!
Panel 2: Duke and Royal Guard 2 are on the ground. Duke has his arm over the guard protectively.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: You didn’t tell me it breathes fire!
2. ROYAL GUARD 2: No one’s ever made it to a Pterdaxan nest and lived to tell!
Panel 3: Duke McQueen runs and dodges energy blast after energy blast. He looks exactly like the All-American Heisman Trophy!
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: Terrific.
Panel 4: Multiple exposure shot (like when there are multiple shots of Spider-man jumping through the city in one panel). At least three Duke McQueens: One diving, one rolling/energy rifle grabbing, one on his knee aiming the gun at us. Show multiple plumes of fire blasts in the background.
[1. NO WORDS NESSESSARY]
Panel 5: Tiny insert panel of a close-up of the gun barrel shorting out. It sparks indicating that it WILL. NOT. WORK.
1. SFX: BZT BZT BZZZzz
Tuesday, November 17, 2015
PAGE THREE (2 panels)___________________
Panel 1: Small panel. We see the top half of Duke’s face as he peeks over the edge of a cliff cave. His arm is over the edge. All we see of Royal Guard 2 is the top half of his head and his gigantic, terrified eyes!
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: Ah-ha! There it is.
Panel 2: Almost a splash page. This panel is HUGE to accommodate the colossal KING PTERADAXAN! He dominates the frame as a dragon-man/monster! He is clutching the Zarnel Crystal (think glowing crystal soccer ball.) It looks like a little pearl in his humungous fingers. Smoke is billowing from his mouth and nostrils. Duke McQueen and Royal Guard 2 occupy the bottom corners of the page.
[1. NO WORDS NESSESSARY]
Sunday, November 15, 2015
PAGE TWO (5_panels)____________________
Panel 1: Vertical Panel! Duke McQueen looks on in horror as Royal Guard 1’s line snaps and he falls to his death.
1. SFX: SNAP!
Panel 2: Creepy visual! Looking up as six lines disappear into a cloud. Think one point perspective. Two lines are nothing but slack as we hear them snap in the cloud. Duke’s head is at the bottom of the panel.
1. SFX: SNAP!
2. SFX: SNAP!
3. DUKE MCQUEEN: EVERYBODY GRAB THE CLIFF!
Panel 3: Biggest panel! Duke takes command! He holds the cliff with one hand and readies his gun in the other. We see a few guards following suit. Pteradaxans (humanoid pteradactyls) descend from the clouds. Their wings create curled wisps of displaced cloud, their shoulders have contrails.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: Set your guns to kill!
2. DUKE MCQUEEN: HERE THEY COME!!!
Panel 4: Duke and the Royal guards fend off the attacking Pteradaxons. Duke and Royal Guard 2 blast away in the foreground. Guards and Pteradaxons fight in the background.
1. ROYAL GUARD 2: This isn’t good.
2. DUKE MCQUEEN: Sure it is-
Panel 5: Duke continues his climb with Royal Guard 2. Guards and Pteradaxons fight in the background.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: -it means we’re getting’ closer.
Friday, November 13, 2015
This is exciting! I’ve never written for another artist before but I’ve always wanted to be considered a writer. I definitely consider myself some kind of storyteller. The main reason I started keeping a blog was an exercise to write every day. That didn’t work out. However, now MillarWorld is looking for new talent: both writers and artists. I will be submitting to both. Here are my pages for the contest.
Written by Billy Penn
This is basically a five page joke about soccer. Being an All-American kind of guy, Duke McQueen thinks soccer is for pussies.
Notes to penciler/colorist:
*This is only a five page story and we have a lot of room to cover with limited real estate on the page. I’m thinking this will take about 30 panels in all.
*Middle Aged/Dad Duke McQueen book ends this tale. He’s a little older than the Young Duke we see in the original mini series and not as old as Present Day Duke McQueen. I’m thinking his Buster Crab bangs are a little shorter and his temples are graying like Mr. Fantastic.
*The royal guards will need distinct uniforms.
*The Pteradaxans should look a little more alien than the Saurons/Fing Fang Foom I sketched. We don’t want anybody to get in trouble here.
*Feel free to expand/delete/consolidate any panels as you see fit. Use these sketches as a springboard. See what works and improve things that could work better. However, DO NOT break the page turns. These tend to be important.
Feel free to email any questions or concerns (or praise) to firstname.lastname@example.org
On to the story…
Billy Penn / and you
PAGE ONE (9 panels)_____________________
Panel 1: Duke McQueen stands at the end of his driveway. He’s wearing a robe over his pajamas, coffee in hand. The morning paper is next to his feet. Both of his boys look up into a tree, barley in frame.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: What’re you fellas up to this mornin’?
2. LARRY MCQUEEN: Ralph got the new soccer ball Aunt Betsy gave me stuck in the tree!
3. DUKE MCQUEEN: Big loss.
Panel 2: Little Larry (curly/wavy blond hair) pleads with dad McQueen while pointing at the ball high up in the tree.
1. LARRY MCQUEEN: We’re gonna need help gettin’ it down.
Panel 3: Duke McQueen looks up smirking, about to sip coffee, reminiscing. Larry (curly/wavy blond hair) and Ralph (straighter brown hair) in the background.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: Heh. This reminds me of one of those times on Tantalus…
2. RALPH MCQUEEN: Not again…
Panel 4: BIGGEST Panel! Vertical orientation! Young Duke McQueen and six royal guards/space soldiers climb a tall cliff that descends to infinity. They use laser grappling hooks/lines that come from their rifles. To get a sense of scale, pepper the back ground with small distant clouds and teeny tiny birds.
1. MCQUEEN CAPTION: A contingent of the royal guard and myself were on a rescue mission.
2. MCQUEEN CAPTION: The Pteradaxans had stolen the Zarnel Crystal.
3. MCQUEEN CAPTION: They took it back to their nest at the top of Mount S’ponzlor.
Panel 5: Duke Climbs, but it isn’t easy. He still looks heroic as sweat beads form on his face and pebbles fall from his knees. The wind is constantly blowing his bangs to one side.
1. MCQUEEN CAPTION: It was a tough climb. Their all-in-one ascender guns were supposed to make it easier.
Panel 6: Small panel. Very wide camera shot of the seven men who look like specks against the rocky surface of the cliff. The cliff is dotted with clouds. Make sure Duke is the farthest climber down. Also make sure that we see their ropes disappear into a bank of clouds overhead.
1. ROYAL GUARD 1: I told you these ascender guns would make the climb easier.
Panel 7: Duke yells over his shoulder (towards the reader) to the guard who is off panel.
1. DUKE MCQUEEN: I’m still gettin’ the hang of these energy-based weapons. They seem overly complicated.
Panel 8: Just a close-up shot of the guard. He’s looking down at McQueen. (towards the reader)
1. ROYAL GUARD 1: Ha! This coming from the Earthling Test Pilot?
Panel 9: The guard waves a friendly goodbye. Duke McQueen continues his uneasy climb in the middle ground. It would be great if we could see other guards in the far background easily walking up the wall.
1. ROYAL GUARD 1: You worry too much!
2. DUKE MCQUEEN: It’s not the climb that worries me.
3. DUKE MCQUEEN: It’s what’s waiting at the top that does.
Wednesday, November 11, 2015
Monday, November 9, 2015
Saturday, November 7, 2015
Friday, November 6, 2015
Friday, October 30, 2015
Wednesday, October 28, 2015
Monday, October 26, 2015
I’ve read a lot of interviews with comic book creators over the years. Interviews probably make up a good chunk of my education. Most comic book artists mention that they made their own comic book as kids. I’ve always felt a little insecure in my abilities because I can’t say that I’ve got many childhood comics book under my belt. I was the type of kid that copied other comic book artists, drew nice pin-ups of super-heroes, and creating my own characters. I never really drew sequential panels. I never was compelled to staple folded paper in half and fill up the pages with stories. I drew one comic in fourth grade for a creative writing assignment. It was/is barely two pages worth of content. Hopefully I can share it someday.
Having been exposed to superheroes from an early age, I have always considered myself a fan. I started really getting into comic books around fourth grade. I would buy and trade Uncanny X-men, Classic X-men, Amazing Spider-man, G.I. Joe and Batman comics. I probably became an official addict during the time of the “Batman: A Death in Family” series coupled with bat mania sweeping the nation. Tim Burton’s Batman had a profound impact on me. This was back in the days when you would have to wait years for the VHS release. So the following when CBS aired the first commercial for The Flash, I was hooked. The commercial showcased the superheroic antics and bombastic score mixed with big-budget special effects and would be broadcasted for free(!) into my living room.
Following the premier of the first episode, for whatever reason, I HAD to adapt it into book form. Every superhero t-shirt, underoo, wash cloth, action figure, blanket, movie, and comic book had led to this point. The Flash TV show was the tipping point. The dam broke. Watching that premier charged me with this creative impulse to make a book. This is probably the closest thing to a childhood comic I have.
I HAD to make it a reality, but I couldn’t do it alone.
I went to school with my mom for nine years. We lived in the Astoria Park school zone, but my mom taught at Kate Sullivan since I was two. Pretty much my whole life. By the fall of 1990, I was attending next door neighbor Cobb Middle School. Kate Sullivan started at around 8:30ish and Cobb started the day around 9:10ish. I had time to kill in the mornings before my school started. ALL of the aforementioned could be said for the Stephens brothers. Their mom had known my mom for years. They taught together. Both Stephens brothers attended Cobb. Rather than doing homework, we decided to spend our mornings working on this Flash book. Somehow I did manage to get homework done (I considered myself a “decent” student.) A school education paled in comparison to a Flash education. A lot of the writing consisted of me dictating the story to older brother Chuck (he was the best typist by this point.) I really just wanted to draw ( at least 93% of the time.) Sometimes Kevin Stafford would drop by my mom’s classroom in the morning to help. I don’t really remember in what capacity, but I thought adding another name to the credits gave the project some extra heft.
Looking at the book now, I can’t help but see it as an artifact of its time.
The book was written in the back corner of my mom’s classroom on her Apple II. The title page needed something special. Enter: Printshop (Pro/Deluxe?)
There’s a really funny youtube video that walks you through the program here. You can see that we used it to great effect: fancy borders, and a “three-dimensional” “Flash Font” for the title.
The word processing program that we used didn’t have spell check. It didn’t have much of anything. The font choices were limited to “bold” “underlined” “italic” and “shadow.” I’m pretty sure you could change the type size from small, to medium, and large. The pages were printed on a noisy dot matrix printer. All four edges of the paper are rough from the perforation tears. Back then, the noise from the printer was the sound of victory. The machine applauded a job well done. Nowadays it’s just irritating and abrasive.
Creating this Flash book was personal milestone. It is fitting that this month marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of the first Flash TV series. October 2015 also represents another milestone and uncharted territory for fans of any Flash T.V. series…the debut of a second season!