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George Evans

Secret Agent Corrigan by George Evans

Taking over after Archie Goodwin and Al Williamson’s run, George Evans’ first daily for Secret Agent Corrigan hit newspapers on February 4, 1980. He had ghosted for Williamson occasionally, but now he was at the helm as writer and artist. Evans continued on the strip for the next sixteen years.

I was first introduced to George Evans’ artistry while working on staff at King Features Syndicate. Ignorant of the huge body of work he had done, I was immediately drawn to the action-packed and beautifully illustrated job he was doing on the strip.

Secret Agent Corrigan May 20, 1992
Secret Agent Corrigan March 11, 1992
Secret Agent Corrigan April 20, 1994

Striking up a correspondance with him, he was more than willing to try to assist a newcomer like myself that was just breaking into the field. The following is a Flash Gordon Sunday page I sent George for critique with the latter being his suggestions on tracing paper.

Click on image to see larger.
George Evans

Because of the decline of adventure strips in newspapers, George Evans’ work on Secret Agent Corrigan didn’t reach the wider audience that would have appreciated it. Maurice Horn lamented this fact in his book, 100 Years of American Newpaper Comics:

“It is unfortunate that because of (Secret Agent Corrigan’s) limited circulation, few people are able to read and appreciate one of the genuinely interesting action strips still extant, a strip carried on in dashing style by Evans.”


Upon Evans’ retirement from the strip in 1996, King Features discontinued the strip.
The last daily saw print on February 10, 1996.

February 10, 1996
February 10, 1996

It wouldn’t be the last time Evans drew Secret Agent. In the summer of 2000 I started a storyline where Secret Agent and Flash Gordon would eventually cross paths (the two strips both originally drawn by Alex Raymond). The climactic page where they meet I handed over to Evans.

And here’s how it appeared in print.

For more Secret Agent Corrigan by George Evans check out IDW’s http://uslanka.net/2016/11/04/yameesha/ Secret Agent Corrigan Volume 6. I highly recommend it!

Categories
Craig MacIntosh

Craig MacIntosh – The Last Lightning

http://drrickforbus.com/tag/transformation/ Craig MacItosh, author of The Fortunate Orphans, has a new book coming out…

Click on picture to get info on purchasing.

Synopsis:

Nearly seventy years after a top-secret escort mission flown by four American aces ends mysteriously, a missionary in Papua New Guinea makes a startling discovery. One of the missing planes—a P-38 Lightning belonging to the flight leader—is found deep in the jungle. Half a world away, others who learn of the surprising discovery race to unlock the past. Greed, betrayal, and brutality descend on an isolated valley where tribal life, unchanged for a century, is about to be visited by a whirlwind of violence.

“A great story . . . you won’t want to put this book down.”

—Col. Perry Dahl, USAF (Ret.), WWII veteran and P-38 ace, 432nd Fighter Squadron, Southwest Pacific Theater

“MacIntosh has skillfully blended interesting fact with intriguing fiction to capture the experiences of our combat aircrews of WWII and the impact on their immediate families and descendants.”

—Brig. Gen. Dennis Shulstad, USAF (Ret.)

Author Craig MacIntosh

loathly Events:

Launch Party

Oct. 13, 1 to 4 pm: the American Legion in Apple Valley, Minnesota.
14521 Granada Drive – Apple Valley, MN 55214

Book Signing

Nov. 11, 3 pm: the American Legion in Rosemount, Minnesota.
14590 Burma Avenue West – Rosemount, MN 55068

Book Signing

December 4th, 6:30 – 8:00pm: the Robert Trail Library.
14395 Robert Trail South – Rosemount, Minnesota 55068
Craig MacIntosh will be the featured speaker in the ongoing “Meet the Author” series.


When not writing, Craig MacIntosh can be found in the Sunday paper, with fellow cartoonist Steve Sack, in their Sunday comics feature Doodles. MacIntosh also illustrates the comic strip Sally Forth, written by Francesco Marciuliano, which appears in over 600 papers.


UPDATE: Book Launch on October 13th at the American Legion in Apple Valley, MN.

Here’s some pics from Craig MacIntosh’s book launch party for The Last Lightning, including a WWII reenactor that was on hand who introduced Craig.

– WWII Reenactor –

Craig MacIntosh recounting his trip to New Guinea as an MIA hunter.

Craig and his wife Linda at the book signing table.

Craig Macintosh

Categories
Artists - Cartoonists Flash Gordon

Flash Gordon Page specs

Just got a question from Jim Frankenstin regarding the specs I used for Flash Gordon – thought I would answer it here for those interested…

Here’s my basic template.

Template

This first strip is an example of a drop panel with a standard two tier layout underneath.
The drop panel is artwork the newspaper can opt not to print and it won’t affect the main body of the strip.

This second example is a drop panel followed by an irregular panel layout. Flash was offered in two formats; half page (with drop panel) and third page (without drop panel) so I could play with that bottom area however I felt as long as the proportions stayed the same.

I’ve played with different kinds of bristol and go back and forth between plate (smooth) and vellum (textured) – it usually depends on the job. I used 1-ply for awhile just because I didn’t have the best light box, but prefer 2-ply as it’s more durable.

I tended to work pretty small because the size it got printed was postage stamp size – far removed from the kind of real estate Alex Raymond had to work with in the Golden Age of the 1930s.

On the left, Flash Gordon 2/25/1934 by AlexRaymond.
On the right, Flash Gordon 11/10/2002 by Joe Kubert.

The size you work in is really dependent on the artist – as long as it stays proportional to the required specs. Patrick McDonnell on Mutts tends to work small compared to Ray Billingsley whose Curtis originals were larger than any other strip I saw during my tenure on staff at King.

Any other questions – just keep ’em coming…

Categories
Artist Spotlight Artists - Cartoonists Conventions Joe Kubert

Joe Kubert – Saying Thanks…

Joe Kubert (1926-2012)
Tribute: Part 3

I’m rounding off my tribute to Joe Kubert this week by reminising about the last time I saw Joe. It was just this past spring at the Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo.

For the Kubert School panel, Joe Kubert alum (and current President of the Kubert School) Anthony Marques moderated, as Joe sketched and answered questions. Here’s just a few highlights featuring Joe’s comments…


The following video is Joe sketching Nite Owl from the Before Watchmen series. The image was projected sideways on a large screen – my video is rotated to one side so the drawing can be seen correctly. While Joe sketched Anthony was fielding questions.

What amazed me during Joe’s drawing demo was that every time Joe was asked a question instead of Anthony (and this is not seen on the video) Joe was so focused on the drawing that Anthony had to repeat the question numerous times just to get Joe’s attention – repeatedly – EVERY time.

Joe finally apologized repeating what he had said moments before – that when he’s drawing,  that’s where he’s focused, so he’s not listening to the conversation going on around him.

THAT’S how focused Joe was while drawing – it was remarkable and inspiring to watch…


After the drawing demo Joe stayed for a short time to meet and greet fans. I went up to say hi and the guy standing in line in front of me told Joe he was a huge fan, then asked for Joe to sign his arm so he could then get the signature tattooed.

Joe immediately protested, “Why would you do that? I can’t…”
The fan persisted and Joe kept protesting until the guy’s friend explained it wasn’t a spur of the moment thing, that his friend really was that big a fan.

Joe finally acquiesced.

This last little clip is of Joe signing the fan’s arm.


My time with Joe was relatively brief. It had been years since I had seen him last, but he recognized who I was after I mentioned the Flash Gordon page we had worked on. A smile lit his face and his strong handshake followed. He asked me what I had been up to and I told him about my freelance and teaching.

I then told him, “I just wanted to thank you for my career.”
That warm smile again and the handshake.

And that was the last time I saw Joe Kubert.

There’s more to say, much more, but I’m going to leave it at that.
My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends – he’ll be sorely missed.

Joe Kubert self-portrait from back in the day…

Joe Kubert Obits and Remembrances From Around the Web:

New York Times Obituary

Washington Post

NPR

Dick Siegel: National Enquirer

Tom Spurgeon: The Comics Reporter

Bill Schelly: The Comics Journal

The Comics Journal: Joe Kubert interview from 1994

Neal Adams

Steve Bissette – Updated

Mark McMurray’s Tribute
Mark is a long time friend and classmate from the Kubert School.

Categories
Artist Spotlight Artists - Cartoonists Joe Kubert

The Kubert School – Acceptance

Joe Kubert (1926-2012)
Tribute: Part 2

Joe Kubert legitimized drawing comics/cartoons as a career.

Graduating High School I had no direction. I grew up inspired by comic book artists, but saying you wanted to draw comics was as remote in the late 1970’s and early 80’s as saying you were going to be an astronaut and go to the moon. Sure, people did it – but there didn’t seem to be any clear path to actually doing so. My first step was a local art school called Atelier Lack (Now The Atelier). Founded by local Minneapolis artist Richard Lack, the school focused on traditional skills and techniques starting with figure drawing and charcoal studies leading up to oil painting. I took a summer course there, which was a great foundation, but my goal was not to work in oils. Next up was the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. At that time the instruction I received veered away from the traditional and was more conceptual. The disdain I got regarding comic art from teachers and students alike at that time had me bowing out after one semester.

I had actually stopped buying comics in High School – they were not conducive to getting dates – but started picking them up again around this time when Stephen Bissette and John Totleben’s artwork started to appear in Swamp Thing (teamed with a new writer by the name of Alan Moore). This is when comics were still on the newsstand, not hidden away in specialty shops away from the prying eyes of the general public. The artwork and storytelling FLOORED me.

Stephan Bissette – penciler • John Totleben – inker • Tatjana Wood – colorist

The Comics Journal hit the newsstand with Swamp Thing on the cover and I snatched it up. In it Bissette and Totleben mentioned a new school they had attended founded by a veteran comic book artist – Joe Kubert. Seeing a copy of The Joe Kubert School presents: 1st Folio, I picked that up as well.

Reading Joe’s introduction on the inside front cover I felt like he was almost talking to me personally…

It seemed a long shot, but I eventually got up nerve to apply. After a portfolio review and interview by Joe Kubert himself (done long distance as I was out of state) there followed the anxiety that my work wouldn’t be up to par. Time past and I eventually received my letter of acceptance – I still have it, and reading blogs and Facebook postings after Joe’s death, I’m finding out many others saved theirs as well.

Acceptance letter.

My parents were always supportive of my aspirations to be a cartoonist – as long as I was actually pursuing it. The Joe Kubert School legitimized that career track. With Joe at the helm, the school actually nurtured this love of comic art and storytelling WAY before “graphic novels” starting seeping into the general public’s lexicon and acceptance.

Recently I moved back to Minnesota and taught at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. They now have a whole department devoted to Comic Art  headed up by Barb Schulz. Steve Bissette now teaches at the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, Vermont. These schools – along with SVA in Manhattan and SCAD in Atlanta – are among the growing number of colleges that recognize comics and cartooning as a legitimate art form.

But the first school solely devoted to Comic Art was Joe Kubert’s.
He lit the way for me and SOOOOOOO many others.

Joe Kubert at his drawing desk.
©Librado Romero/The New York Times

That the school will still thrive with his sons Andy and Adam at the helm is a testament to the hard work, spirit and love of the craft that Joe and his wife Muriel put into it for over 30 years. I’m proud and honored to be counted as an alumnus.

With a tip of my Joe Kubert hat…