Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Aquaman Header at the Aquaman Shrine

One of my more recent honors has been that my buddy Rob Kelly over at The Aquaman Shrine used a piece of my art as his monthly header.

This year is the 70th anniversary of Aquaman's published debut (MORE FUN COMICS #73, Nov 1941) and to help celebrate this, Rob decided to open up the header on his popular blog to his (and Aquaman's) artistic fans. Because my birthday is October 1, I asked him to "reserve" that month for me. If I could come up with something good enough, I would be able to claim bragging rights and get a heck of a birthday present.

Well, I failed and I didn't get anything good enough to him.

Just kidding! THAT would have made a boring post!

Helping to celebrate Aquaman's birthday, I originally wanted to have seven different Aquamen; however, his history doesn't really break down that easily, AND there have been *quite* a few different versions of the character. Also, I came upon the idea of "aping" the various artistic styles of his artists. So although these all look different, they are all actually by me...and no tracing, either. Note: I *really* wanted to include a version of the Craig Hamilton "camouflage" Aquaman, but it was very very difficult trying to copy Craig's style. Eventually I just gave up. :-( 

Here is the header in all its glory:

From left: Aquaman in his debut by Paul Norris, Filmation cartoon Aquaman, Aqualad by Ramona Fradon, Mera & Aquaman getting married by Nick Cardy, Hanna-Barbara Super Friends Aquaman, Jim Aparo Aquaman, Jim Calafiore hooked Aquaman, Butch Guice Sword of Aquaman, Brave & Bold Aquaman, and current (!) Ivan Reis Aquaman.   

And now, for the purists, here is the actual original! You'll notice right away that it is not as elongated (great word!) as it ended up being. Although I used an 11 x 17 sheet of paper, I also ended up filling the entire page! (oops!) Rob said that he liked it, but he couldn't use it because it wasn't long enough without having to crop out, say, Aqualad and Brave & Bold Aquaman (bottom left and right, respectively). So I went back to it and re-arranged it to what it turned out to be...but not before coloring it, of course!

I really like the white background. I also liked how I chose different greens and oranges for the different versions, too. I kinda like how it turned out! :-)

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, AQUAMAN...and happy birthday to me, too. And thanks, Rob, for helping give myself a great birthday present I'll never forget. :-)

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