Monday, May 28, 2012

5/25/12

Spectrum Fantastic Art Live: Bud's Show Report!

We just returned from Kansas City where we exhibited at the very first Spectrum Fantastic Art Live. This was produced by Arnie and Cathy Fenner, the editors of Spectrum, the annual of fantastic art.

The event was incredible!
There were 200 artists exhibiting and I talked to practically every one. James Gurney (Dinotopia) was there and was awarded the Spectrum Grand Master Award. Directly across the aisle from my booth was Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell, so we got re-acquainted after not seeing one another for several years. That also happened with Michael Whelan, who I also hadn't seen in far too long. He's overdue for a new up-to-date art collection so I did my best to encourage him. I also worked on Omar Rayyan (Mismantle Chronicles, Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám)--he's overdue for a first art book. Omar quickly sold several wonderful fantasy paintings to the original art collectors prowling the show. I saw quite a few other "sold" tags in my wanderings.

I worked very hard to cover the room and find interesting new art books and sketchbooks to bring to you. This week we only have time to list the first few. I'll be getting others up on the website as quickly as possible--watch New Arrivals. And you'll see many more in the the next two or three eblasts, along with more news from the show.

Our Highest Recommendation goes to the show book, Spectrum Live! It features the work of the five guests of honor: Android Jones, Brom, Phil Hale, Ian McCaig and Mike Mignola. Our favorite publisher John Flesk produced this superb edition. The art inside is absolutely amazing, from unpublished drawings to magnificent, award-winning paintings. Each artist gets an introduction by the likes of artist William Stout and best-selling authors Christopher Paolini and Christopher Golden, while Phil Hale gets a full interview. Arnie and Cathy Fenner introduce the overall book. Ian McCaig's work here includes art from his designs for the John Carter film.

Everyone at the show was so busy
we could not get our copies of Spectrum Live signed. But a few years ago Brom gave us a very cool color painting, which we produced as a bookplate and he signed for us. You will get one of these at no charge with Spectrum Live. You'll also get a nifty Spectrum bookmark! This show was a very special event, and the first in what I hope will be an annual happening. As such, this first book is going to be highly prized.

For a look at the Spectrum Awards
ceremony and list of winners, Click here. You'll find these winners there: Gold AND Silver Medal winner Jean-Baptiste Monge and Gold Medal award winner Justin Sweet. Next week you'll see new items by each one here--and much more from the show.

Daren Bader is an exciting and innovative fantasy artist. His booth was adjacent to us at the Spectrum show. We asked him to sign copies of his art book that we handled previously unsigned. He also has a brand new book, One Hundred Drawings, which he also signed for us. Look at his work and see for yourself why I'm so enthusiastic to have these two books available. More of his work is at www.darenbader.com.

Michael Hayes has a wonderful collection of fully-finished fantasy work in his self-produced art book, Prologue. We first saw this at Wonder Con, but he sold out. Then we were supposed to get copies at Emerald City Con in Seattle. He sold out again. Finally we connected at Spectrum and now we have signed copies. You'll see why he can't keep these on hand at the shows. He's also online at www.artofmike.com.

Jeff Miracola is a creature- and character- designer who has long worked for Magic the Gathering, World of Warcraft and Dungeons and Dragons. Monstrosity is his first collection of drawings. And if you can believe it, he has drawn--in ink--a small illustration in every one of our copies! And for just $15. You can see more of his work online at www.jeffmiracola.com.

Although his father Boris was at the show, Dorian Vallejo was not able to make it. But just arrived is his delicious 192-page hardcover. Much of this is devoted to full color portraits and drawings of beautiful women. Whether they are clothed or nude, the work here is exquisite. To force a comparison, if you don't know his work, imagine Jeffrey Jones' fine art work for Age of Innocence, or the figure studies of Kent Williams. Man, this is magnificent. It also gets Our Highest Recommendation, which I don't give lightly. Each copy is boldly signed in full.

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This is also a good week for comics-related releases
. The first volume of Manara Erotica is here, with the best-selling "Click" and "Click2," "Rendezvous in B-Flat" and more. 292 pages by the number one erotic comics artist.

A new issue of Squa Tront is a rare and special event, not to be missed
. This issue features a rare interview with Howard Nostrand, an artist who could have easily fit in at EC Comics but instead was the premier artist, along with Bob Powell, doing pre-code horror at Harvey Comics. Also there's an amazing number of Jack Davis 1945 cartoons done while in the Navy, with a surprising number of pin-up panels and sexual humor! And Basil Wolverton!

Bizarre Thrills is the story of Bill Black's AC publications
, from his first good-girl-art fanzines to Golden Age reprints to his original, busty heroines in the tradition of The Phantom Lady and other icons of comics excess!

Turok Son of Stone Archives releases it's tenth volume, discounted now from the get-go. We also have all back volumes available at $10 off each one. As William Stout puts it in Volume 10, "The interior Turok art reached a fabulous peak after it was taken over by the great Italian comic-book artist Alberto Giolitti. Giolitt's prehistoric landscapes not only exuded mood and mystery, they were beautifully designed. The great EC Comics legend, artist Al Williamson, confided to me that he swiped Giolitti's swamps and jungles on a regular basis for his Secret Agent X-9 strips."

Journey Into Mystery #31-40, all from 1956, are featured in the latest Marvel Masterworks Atlas Era. Dr. Michael Vassallo's highly informative introductions to these are not to be missed, as he discusses each artist and story, with no punches pulled. He puts each creator clearly in context of both Atlas history and pre-code and (in this case) early post-code horror comics. Here we have classic work by Ditko, Al Williamson, George Roussos, Bob Powell, Joe Orlando, Bernie Krigstein, John Giunta, Gene Colan, even Wally Wood. By this time EC had folded up--except for Mad--and many of EC's best had moved over to Stan Lee's little company.

Click here for all our Atlas Era Archives. These excellent volumes are collecting some of the finest drawn comics, after EC, published in the 1950s and early 1960s. Strange Tales, Tales to Astonish, Jungle Adventures and Venus--all now discounted $10-$15 off cover price.

Click here for all our Marvel Masterworks, including Golden Age reprints of Capt. America, USA, Mystic, Sub-Mariner, Yong Allies and Marvel Mystery. And modern collections of Dr. Strange, Spider-Man, etc.

We have two more classic pin-up prints this week, a wonderful image of Irish McCalla in her skimpy Sheena costume, and signed by her. Plus "The Three Graces," a fine-art portrait of three voluptuous ladies by Zoe Mozert. From the same publisher we also have a mind-blowing nude by Gil Elvgren, "Still Life"--my hands-down favorite image of his--along with his fine-art nude "Eurasian Girl," Earl Moran's portrait of Marilyn Monroe, "Spanish Girl," and our best-selling nude "Amanda," by Bobby Tombs.

Robert Crumb's trading cards have proved to be perennial favorites
. Denis Kitchen has kept these in print and we're pleased to offer these nifty little boxed sets once again. There are 36 full color cards in each set, complete with notes on the back about each Jazz Greats, each Blues Hero and in the case of the general set, each Crumb character, from Angelfood McSpade to Fritz the Cat and Devil Girl. Written by comics historian Dave Schreiner.

Finally, the first-ever collection of new Lone Ranger prose stories
. 16 new stories by an impressive list of writers, plus--exclusive to this deluxe hardcover edition--an extra 14-page look at Lone Ranger history by editor Tim Lasiuta. Cover by Ruben Procopio. For our Lone Ranger pulp reprints click here!

See you....next week! Have a wonderful Memorial Day.

Bud

Some of my favorite new Items:


DAREN BADER: One Hundred Drawings
Our Highest Recommendation
Signed! Fantasy artist Daren Bader has unleashed a truly wonderful new art book. This beautiful, colorful hardcover is designed to be read cover to cover and then flipped over and read again from side two. Side One is like an old "best of" album filled with girls, creatures and action. It is your classic "fantasy art" fare, with several nods to Frazetta, including the Death Dealer and Conan. This includes painting studies for his glorious work for Wizard of the Coast. Side two presents Daren's pieces done for his own enjoyment. Studies of movie stills and "life drawings" of sculptures, and animals. Of course it is also loaded with girls, creatures and action, beautifully printed in brown inks on brown backgrounds and actually printed in full color throughout! If you know Daren's work, you will want to grab this book. If you don't know him, then you need to see this. Signed by the artist.
Item Code: DBS
Your price: $23.00
   

PROLOGUE: The Art of Michael C. Hayes Volume One
Our Highest Recommendation
Signed! Michael Hayes has a wonderful collection of fully-finished fantasy work in this self-produced art book, Prologue. We first saw this at Wonder Con, but he sold out. Then we were supposed to get copies at Emerald City Con in Seattle. He sold out again. Finally we connected at Spectrum and now we have signed copies. You'll see why he can't keep these on hand at the shows.
He's done work for Wizards of the Coast (Magic the Gathering), Blizzard Entertainment, Sony Online, LucasArts, Nightshade Books, Palladium Books, and more. This first collection features the best of his work, from the beginning of his career right into 2012. He's also online at www.artofmike.com.
Item Code: PROLS
Your price: $20.00
     

DRAWINGS: Inspired by Life
Our Highest Recommendation
Signed! Published by Dorian himself and only available from very selected sources, this is a delicious 192-page hardcover. Much of this is devoted to full color portraits and drawings of beautiful women. Whether they are clothed or nude, the work here is exquisite. To force a comparison, in case you haven't seen Dorian's work before, imagine Jeffrey Jones' fine art work for Age of Innocence, or the figure studies of Kent Williams. Man, this is magnificent. Dorian's father Boris Vallejo provides the introduction but there the two part company. Where Boris is devoted to strictly fantasy work, Dorian has gone in another direction entirely. And we are so pleased he has. This is not to be missed and is actually an excellent value for the size and quality of this impressive hardcover. Each copy is boldly signed in full.
Item Code: DRAWINS
Your price: $44.99
   


MONSTROSITY: A Book of Drawings
Recommended
Signed with original picture! Jeff Miracola is a creature- and character-designer who has long worked for Magic the Gathering, World of Warcraft and Dungeons and Dragons. Monstrosity is his first collection of drawings. And if you can believe it, he has drawn--in ink--a small illustration in every one of our copies! And for just $15. This is filled with nicely detailed monsters, creatures, dragons, skeletons, nice naked ladies, serious portraits, figure studies. Some full page, many are 3 or 4 to a page and well worth a close look. You can see more of his work online at www.jeffmiracola.com.
Item Code: MONSTS
Your price: $15.00
     
SQUA TRONT #13
Highly Recommended
Five years in the making and meticulously edited by John Benson, Squa Tront returns with a profusion of rare and interesting features from the EC era: the story behind Basil Wolverton’s first EC art; Howard Nostrand’s last interview; art from the unpublished third issue of Flip; Jack Davis’s WWII cartoons; plus EC era art by Wallace Wood, John and Marie Severin, Harvey Kurtzman, and Roy Krenkel.
A new issue of Squa Tront is a rare and special event, not to be missed. This issue features a rare interview with Howard Nostrand, an artist who could have easily fit in at EC Comics but instead was the premiere artist, along with Bob Powell, doing pre-code horror at Harvey Comics. Also there's an amazing number of Jack Davis 1945 cartoons done while in the Navy, with a surprising number of pin-up panels and sexual humor! The longest running EC historical magazine.
Item Code: SQUA13
Your price: $9.99

TUROK SON OF STONE ARCHIVES Volume 10
Turok Son of Stone Archives releases it's tenth volume, discounted now from the get-go. As William Stout states in this volume, "The interior Turok art reached a fabulous peak after it was taken over by the great Italian comic-book artist Alberto Giolitti. Giolitt's prehistoric landscapes not only exuded mood and mystery, they were beautifully designed. The great EC Comics legend, artist Al Williamson, confided to me that he swiped Giolitti's swamps and jungles on a regular basis for his Secret Agent X-9 strips."
Indian braves Turok and Andar find themselves in a never-ending string of dangerous situations as they struggle to escape the mysterious lost valley. Seeking to return to their homeland and their tribe, they are pursued by maddened dinosaurs, surrounded by sea honkers, threatened by a volcanic eruption, and fight for their lives in a dead city. But, armed with their poisoned arrows, the pair never gives up hope of one day finding a way out of this strange and perilous land. Continuing the archive collection of Gold Key Publishing's run, this volume contain issues #60 through #67 (1968-1969).
Item Code: TUR10H
Published at $59.99
On Sale! Save $12!
Your price: $47.99

BIZARRE THRILLS: The Paragon Publications Story
Between 1968 and 1982, Paragon released more than 40 publications, fueled not only by Bill’s love of good-girl art of the 1940s, but also a healthy dose of something woefully rare in the mainstream comics of the day, and that is strong female characters. This volume collects some of the best of this long unavailable material; 21 full vintage stories in all, starring the likes of Synn (when she was still referred to as The Girl From LSD), The Shade (his original origin), Tara, Stormy Tempest, Nightveil (at a point that she was being referred to as “Phantom Lady”), The (original) Scarlet Scorpion, the prototype for Stardust and others. In addition, Bill provides a complete Paragon Publications index, an overview to how it all ran, notes and history; plus comments from fans/readers of the day. Most of this material has been unseen anywhere for more than three decades!
Item Code: BTPPU
Published at $29.95
On Sale! Save $3!
Your price: $26.95

MANARA EROTICA Vol 1
Recommended
Italian comics legend Manara may well be the greatest erotic storyteller in comics! His graphic--and I use the word "graphic" with both meanings--his graphic novels were among our bestselling erotica for years and years. This new collection will bring back these long-unavailable stories. This first volume is anchored by all four chapters of Manara's internationally acclaimed Click! A beautiful but seemingly passionless woman is plunged into a hilarious, sensuous and highly erotic world-spanning adventure when she is implanted with a remote-controlled chip able to unleash her wildest hidden desires at the Click of a switch. Manara classics Rendezvous in B-flat and The Last Tragic Day of Gori Bau & the Callipygian Sister round out this dazzling compilation, all newly translated by European comics expert Kim Thompson, and featuring an introductory essay by Italian editor and author Alessandro Ferrari.
Item Code: MME01H
Published at $59.99
On Sale! Save $12!
Your price: $47.99          
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