My first pages of original comic book art
After being a die-hard comic book reader and art affectionado for 25 years, you'd think that I'd have acquired pages-upon-pages of original art. But the truth is that I never bought a single page until a month ago.
Actually, I didn't just buy one page -- I bought two pages within days of each other. And they both arrived at the same time.
The first page was purchased from Ross Campbell while recording A Podcast with Ross and Nick #127. When I found out which pages were still left over from this year's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Microseries #4: Leonardo, I leapt at the chance to own one of the best moments from the issue written by Brian Lynch. In fact, Ross was selling it for so cheap that I offered to pay him more.
The second page came from 1994's Aquaman #2. It features awesome pencils and inks by Martin Egeland and Brad Vancata. It was selling for an unbelievable price (the same low price that Ross had originally quoted for his TNMT page). And what makes this one extra special is that it also has Peter David's script as lettered by Dan Nakrosis. I couldn't pass it up!!!
The pages have some significant differences, namely size. Martin and company worked on a standard DC Comics art board. However, Ross drew his Leo issue on a much smaller piece of Bristol board. On the Aquaman page, you can see editorial markings from Eddie Berganza and Kevin Dooley, plus a paste-up correction by Dan. On Ross's page, he used the corner to blot his brush. To me, these little quirks are what make these original pages so fucking rad.
I bought the Aquaman art from SketchMavin.com, and the seller included a copy of Aquaman #2 with the page. I already had the issue, but regardless -- I thought that was a really classy move on their part.
But not to be outdone, Ross left me a little surprise inside his envelope -- a postcard-sized sketch of my favorite TMNT character, Splinter. It's a gorgeous piece with delicate lines and a fantastic mood. THX ROSS!!!!
So that's it for my first pages of original comic book art. The next step is to frame them or bronze them or something. Or maybe I'll just resell them and make some mutherfuckin' $$$ big $$$ money...
These puppies are stayin' with me.
So I feel like I should know this, but I don't. On things like this Aquaman original art where there's a letterer, an inker, & a penciler all on the same physical piece of paper; who draws the word balloons in & at what point in the process?
To be totally honest, I'm not sure either!!! I've only ever lettered digitally or hand-lettered my own stuff, so I dunno what the mainstream process was like back in the mid-90s. My guess is that the letterer would first draw the straight pencil lines for the letters, then pencil the letters, ink the letters, and then do the balloons themselves. I assume the inker had nothing to do with it.
So maybe the letterer got the pages before the inker had them?!?!