Sally Forth – May 25, 2014


Quick behind the scenes look at some of the steps in creating a Sunday page.


Sally Forth

Sunday page in progress.


Finished inks with lettering and drop panel laid in.
(Click on image to see larger.)


Pretty standard for the condition of the proof sheets I receive.

And here’s the colored version that you can see at Comics Kingdom.



If Sally Forth isn’t in your local paper you can check it out online at…


A yearlong subscription to all of King Features’ comics (new and vintage) plus two years worth of archives for every single strip is a pittance at $19.99 a year. Unsure? Try a 7 day trial subscription for free.

Posted in Sally Forth | Comments Off

GODZILLA – By Stephen Bissette

At the same time in 1987 that Steve Bissette was wrapping up his groundbreaking run on Swamp Thing, this little gem was published through Dark Horse.


I’m including the credits page here as well so that all that were involved are cited.


What follows are a few sample pages. Page 1, 2-3 (double page spread) and page 20.


Click on image to see larger.

Click on image to see larger.


Page 20 in particular is pure Bissette – you can almost feel the weight of Godzilla’s foot by how he renders the folds in the creature’s massive hide.

The comic also included an immensely informative two-page text piece by Bissette entitled “Thirty Years of Godzilla” – along with Godzilla pin-ups by Paul Chadwick, Alan Moore, Charles Vess and others.

If you can find a copy of this back issue I highly recommend it!
But don’t just take my word for it…

Siskel and Ebert.

Siskel and Ebert.

Posted in Steve Bissette | Tagged , | Comments Off

GOJIRA – by Stephen Bissette

One of my favorite originals from my collection…


GOJIRA (aka Godzilla)
by Stephen Bissette


Best viewed while listening to an excerpt from the Gojira theme by Akira Ifukube.

Posted in Steve Bissette | Tagged , , | Comments Off

GODZILLA – by Herb Trimpe

Herb Trimpe is one of my favorite artists – so here’s some Godzilla art courtesy of
Click on images to see larger.







HT- GW and godz cropped resized


Don’t own any of these originals myself, but did have Herb Trimpe sign the printed version of that last one.


For more on Herb Trimpe, including a New York Times piece that ran in 2000 in which he chronicles getting unceremoniously laid off from Marvel, check out my previous blog post at Herb Trimpe.

Posted in Herb Trimpe | Tagged , , | Comments Off

Godzilla- The Lonely Monster

From the mind of Sally Forth writer Francesco Marciuliano


(For more of the same, go to Medium Large.)

It prompted me to take “The Lonely Man” theme (from the Incredible Hulk TV show of the 70s) and put it over a classic (and wonderfully weird) Godzilla movie clip…

Posted in Francesco Marciuliano | Tagged | Comments Off

Table at SpringCon – Cancellation

Crap – due to unforeseen circumstances I have to bow out at having a table at SpringCon this coming weekend (May 17-18).

Nothing life threatening, just life’s mundane curveballs that muck up the works.

Posted in Conventions | Comments Off

Things to Consider When Commissioning Artwork

A lot of times people will approach me needing artwork for a particular project (logo or spot art) and wonder what I would charge.

To borrow from a previous post regarding pricing a page rate for comic book work, it’s hard for me to price a project blind without knowing the specifics. It’s like a building contractor making an estimate before coming out to see the work site, or figuring out a fair price on a used car without looking under the hood.

And to quote Tom Richmond again (NCS president and Mad Magazine artist):

You’re not pricing your work based on the time you spent on it, but the rights you’re giving away. And if someone wants you to work for free claiming the work they are offering will be “good exposure” – remember, people die from exposure.


In regards to pricing your work the Graphic Artist Guild has a great online checklist for artists of items that should be covered in a contract. But as much as an artist needs to know the business side of things, so does the client.

This may seem obvious, but I’ve found in the case of smaller jobs this is most often not the case – nine times out of ten the client is unaware of what the work entails. In these cases a contract is imperative so that the client and artist are on the same page and neither ends up feeling shafted because of a misunderstanding.

That said, here’s the short list of items for the client to consider when commissioning artwork. (Abridged and amended from the Graphic Artist Guild’s page.)


Licensing Rights: Remember what Tom Richmond said about the client purchasing the rights to the artwork? The rights you request have to be stipulated. For this I’m citing the Graphic Artist Guild page.

• Is the license national, local, or regional?

• Is it for limited or unlimited usage? If limited, define re-use rights.
• Always state time and location limits.
• Determine who owns original work.
• Determine a time for return of work not owned by you or your client.

The more rights you request, the more the cost, And if these terms make no sense, here’s The Graphic Artist Guild’s glossary.

Thumbnails/Roughs: After your initial meeting with the artist (where you give a comprehensive take on what it is you need), request a few roughs from the artist for you to chose from before they go to the final illustration. This is so you and the artist are on the same page as far as the kind of illustration needed. The number of roughs can vary, but remember the more preliminary work you have them do the more the cost.

Mock-up Before Final Piece: This is the drawing done before the finished piece where you give your approval or make final suggestions. Remember once again that the more revisions the more the cost.

: More often than not you will get a digital file of the artwork. Make sure to have in the contract the precise size and format requirements of the file you need.

 I would recommend putting in a buffer between when you need the artwork and what you state is the deadline. Murphy’s law is; “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.” This way you protect yourself in case of an unexpected hiccup on your end or the artist’s.

Rush Job: Expect to pay more.

Kill Fee: The price you pay if you cancel the project mid-process.

Payment: Progressive payments?
 Payment upon completion? Payment by invoice (30 days)
? Make sure it’s spelled out. Make sure everything is spelled out – that’s what contracts are for.


Addendum: After writing this up I asked magazine cartoonist Mike Lynch to give this the once over, so here’s his added info…


    Payment: It’s very, very easy to take credit cards via Paypal. And it’s not a bad thing to ask for the money upfront, or at least 50% upfront. That’s your non-refundable kill fee, and you should not start work without it. The rest should be paid within 30 days.

    Copyright: I make note of who owns the copyright on every invoice.


Now by no means is this supposed to be an all-comprehensive list, just a starting point.

I’m hoping the take away from this is that, as a client, you realize the need to nail down as much as possible the specifics of the commission you’re requesting before contacting an artist – that way no time is wasted and you’ll end up with exactly the artwork you need.

Posted in Business of Cartooning | Comments Off