Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Soldier Legacy's Strange Tales #1 cover progress. a.k.a: Confessions of an Obsessive, Compulsive and Paranoid Comic Illustrator

Basically, this is it. The final cover for next month's new release at OZ Comic-Con Perth, Adelaide and beyond: 'The Soldier Legacy's Strange Tales'. Back cover will feature characters from the back up feature: Lazarus Burne's Maleficent Seven'.

As mentioned previous, this book reprints the first two parts of the Dr Nikola /Soldier Legacy story from 'Dark Detective: Sherlock Holmes' (with touch ups), and will newly publish the conclusion of this story being penciled and coloured now, and due to be released in 'Dark Detective: Sherlock Holmes #9' out soon. This 3 part story and the 'Larry Burne' tale were plotted by my writer buddy Chris Sequeira (DD: Sherlock Holmes, X-Men vs Vampires, upcoming 'The Avenger' story for Moonstone etc.) and I, and then scripted by Chris once I flooded his inbox with the pages. I'm currently lettering LB on the other screen, and waiting on Chris to give me the proverbial slap upside the head with the corrections and tweaks before I can finally leave that story alone. 

The guys on the Whatcha podcast recently touched on the Dark Detective: Sherlock Holmes series, mentioning the Dr Nikola back up feature kindly, and I'm stoked to finally be able to complete it and assemble it into this one-shot book. And, to see LB finally completed as intended a while back, I'm pleased to include this in the Black House Comics Soldier Legacy family.
(about 1hr 08 mins in)
Anyways, enough of the official nonsense. Let's crack open my head a little and spill some OCD-related imagery and madness, with a spattering of indecisiveness ;P

Progress on the covers: it was basically a question of trying to make the colours of the back ground vs images vs the logo work within the concept of "weird"/"strange", while at the same time not confusing the eye with a muddled mess- I wanted the primary image to stand out as well at the title header. 

The main thing here was as as much as I dug the Red/orange and yellow versions, they looked too "warm" in respect to the whole "strange" vibe I wanted. And though I really liked the original green colour for the 'Strange Tales' title, it was too close to the value of the background (as well as green on green). Loooking back at some of the 'Strange Tales' covers from the early 60's I really liked the yellow and red combination on the headers (white would have been good, had it not been for the white "page tear" in the bg.) Thankfully, red and green compliment each other, so once that combination was hit, the colour balance of the page seemed to fall into place, and I could start to finalise the other elemnts with the paranoia that all the different bits clashed with each other/didn't suit the overall "theme".

It was just a question of getting another round of feedback from the publisher Baden Kiragn, and writer collaborator on these tales, Chris Sequeira, before making my final decision. Will probably re-align one or two things but essentially, the top image of the post is the final version. Phew! Perdantic, much? 

Below are examples of the original 'Captain America's Weird Tales' (the original kernel that started this concept,) from 1949/1950, and the 1960's 'Strange Tales' title.




Thanks, folks! More to come soon. 

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