THE SWIM

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A figment of your imagination....




The JabbaWockeez.

These guys are making a big splash in the dance market.

They started on MTV's America's Best Dance Crew.

I'm sorry to say that my fiance has slightly gotten me hooked on 'em.

Yeah.

I'm man enough to say it.

They happened to be the headliner along with Melissa Reyes for a benefit for sick children in St.Peter's College in Jersey City.

You don't realize the amount of work, energy and athletics involved in dance until you see it up close and personal.
So i used the video option on my Kodak to record the performance because taking pics wouldn't do them justice.

I took pics of Melissa Reyes because she's cute, but has no stage presence.
Girl needs to work on that.

But you wanna see JabbaWockeez.

SO look at them.

Don't mind the camera footage.

I was right on the floor with 'em and apparently they're really well liked.

and some girls' big heads were in the way.

And there's so much bass that the Kodak couldn't handle the overload.


Besides, what do you want for free anyway?



Monday, June 30, 2008

WORKING ON MY VELOCITY....




I gotta admit.

I'm having fun with this.

It's been awhile since i've posted anything and there's so much to talk about.

But first.. i'm sure you've heard so far that i'm going to be working with Top Cow on Velocity.

I had never even heard of the character until someone told me that she was a part of Cyber-Force.

I know!!

Where have i been?

So when i was approached by Rob Levin at Top Cow and was told I would be paired with Joe Casey...

...yup....

you feelin' me...!


Like a cold frozen Watermelon smoothie on a hot day.

Satisfying.

So as i'm nearing the end of my run with BIG CITY, i'll be jumping on TOP COW.

Sounds like a code from my handler.

But as you can see, i've already started dreaming up a little bit of an upgrade for our fast heroine.

That's the woman and not the drug.

Although i can only hope you'll be addicted with what Joe and I create.

All colorwork on the character studies are being done by Snakebite...colorist whose won many awards for his work on The Red Star.

Yup. THAT ONE.

So enjoy the work i've put up so far. I 've made great strides with this character already and I'll be ready for more. It seems i'm getting ready to do a ton of work back in the States again.

and as usual... click in the lavenduh, baby.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

THE FLASH OF MICHAEL TURNER

I've gotten to a point in my life where i need to start recording people, places and things... because you just never know when the good times or great things will end.

You see this picture?
I thought this was the coolest depiction of the Flash that i had ever seen to date. Why?
It's a simple piece, it's RED... can't beat that. And can't MISS that. I was looking for a FF comic and this cover pulled me right to it. I didn't buy that Flash comic, but i did notice it. Which is what one would go for when paired up against tons of other comics vying for your attention.

And it worked.

I think, i'm my personal opinion, that this piece is the best in Michael Turner's career. The composition, and the concept of it all just says..."FLASH!"

You can hear the music from the Flash tv series rippling in your head.

da-dada-DAAAAAAAH-da!


Definitely made me wanna create.

You know earlier when i said that i've gotten to the point in my life where i feel i need to record things?

I remember when Michael Jordan was playing basketball and a reporter asked Magic Johnson about how he felt about MJ as a player. And Magic said," You'd better get your VCR's recording, because he's only here for a limited time and then he's going to retire. And after that, all you're going to have are memories of arguably the best basketball player that ever lived. He's going to retire and that's it. No more basketball. Just slow motion video feeds of what he used to do."

I paraphrase of course. But what he said was true. All too soon, the best of what happens in a particular culture of life can be taken away from us. What you have left is the great works on which to pontificate, study and enjoy.

Michael Turner passed away from his battle with cancer at age 37.

37.

I just had my 40th birthday party and someone asked me, "How does it feel to be the big 4-o?"

And i said, "Blessed that i lived to see it!!"

I come back from the best party i ever threw for myself this weekend to find emails that yet another of our number has passed before 45.

All these young cats leaving before we want them to.

I wanna say "before their time", but really... who am i to say that?

It just really drives home that biblical tenet that tomorrow is never promised to us and we have a limited time on this world and we have to make our mark....hopefull one that won't be erased...
and affect people's lives with our spirits while we have the time.

I'm sure as i write this, Michael has done this in his own way. In the eyes of his family, in the imaginations of his fans and in the eyes of God.

It makes no sense why young people have to die of such an evil, debilitating disease.

Why it has to take away the best of us.

But God has His time, and we had Michael for a time.

I pray his family finds the peace they need during this time.

I have never had the chance to meet Michael, but like all secret languages, an artist can look at another's work and know him or her as if they've met on the street and had coffee and an omelette croissant and told each other their stories.

Regrettably, Michael's story was shortened by an unfortunate ending.

And his brilliance was .... well.. a flash.

God bless the Turner clan.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Thursday, May 15, 2008

DOWN WITH THE CAUSE.... IN PHILLY

This weekend starts the East Coast Black Age of Comicon '08 in Philly this weekend. A lot of cool people are going to be there... you can just look below and get a gander at who, for starters.




I've been asked to come there to speak on a panel of other African-American artist and writers to talk to people about the state of affairs in modern comics and field questions from anyone who wants to know how to break in and what it takes to be an artist.
I've done that before, so it's old hat.

SO.. if you have time, you should go check it out!! Maybe i'll see you there. I'll only be there on Saturday. Here's the link to ECBACC....just click the lavender. All the information is there and other sites where ECBACC is located.

A lot will be going on this month, so i'll be posting as soon as it happens.

Maybe i'll even have time to get me a famous cheesesteak or two..!!!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

TAINTED.



Dude. It's comin'.
Are you TAINTED?

Saturday, May 3, 2008

The Commish--part uno



This is a commission i did for a brother in Italy. He has a major jones for the old Defenders.
So in 2006, around September... i think... i got around to getting it done.

You know...

even though i got interrupted for like 3 months after i got myself into a bike accident...

.. stupid bike... !


This is just to show you that if you ask for a commission from me, what kind of work you'll get when you pay for a one-of-a-kind drawing. I will be posting commissions that i've done for people in the past as well as future commishes.

If you want one for yourself, go to Mark Hay. He'll do you up right.

Just click Mark's name and it'll go directly to his site.

Hope to do business with you.

Oh yeah...

click the pic , too. It gets bigger.

No sexual jokes, please.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

KEYS to the kingdom




This is the most amazing thing i have ever seen. I've always had a thing for ALICIA KEYS.

ALWAYS.

I even have a top one hundred list in my brain of all the type of women i like.

Will you LOOK AT THE BODY on ALICIA?

Hold up.... gotta wipe.

i'm SLOBBERING.

If you are a man, and you don't like what you see in this vid... something's wrong with you.
If you are a white man and you don't like the hips on this sister... something has melted your brain.
I say this because of the many talks with my caucasian brethren who say they like there women with skinny thighs and tight hips.

Which is usually "white" for "back and legs."

A broomstick with a hair-weave.

OR what we brothers call NASSITALL.

OR NO A-- AT ALL.

can't say the word. I don't curse. Use your imagination.

If you're gay, and you're not at least swayed enough to say..."Pookie, look at the bricks in that house, hunney. I'm tempted to make my crooked way STRAIGHT for a day with that!", then you're in EXTREME denial, "sistuh".

If you are an ATHIEST, look at her. You've just seen proof that GOD does EXIST.

Why stare into a corn chip looking for the Madonna and Jesus when living proof of God's beauty is in plain view?

I've seen it.

I Know.
I know.

You're saying..."ChrisCross, you said in your posts that you are a born again Christian. How can you look at her like that? How can you even say these things? You HEATHEN."

To which i say that being a born-again Christian means in part about dying to the "old man" that you used to be.

It doesn't mean i'm DEAD.

That, my dear men, is what a WOMAN looks like.

God can make a woman can't he?

HALLELUJAH.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Six degrees of Kerry Gammill


Sigh.

This is going to be a tough one.

I can never look at this man's face without some regret.
Without some sadness.
Without feeling something's amiss.

I mean, we all have to die someday, right?

But at 34?

I'm a Born Again Christian and, even still, that doesn't set right with me.

Not that I blame God or anything. That would be counterproductive.
And frankly, just dumb.

God has done way too much for me to think like that.

I met David Hunter in 9th Grade.
Always well-groomed, always neat, always put together.
One of those brothers that you always enjoyed being around.

One of those regrettable things you say to yourself, "It's a shame that we didn't hang around more after college."

He had this crazy knack for showing up just when i didn't expect him but always when i needed to see someone that made sense.
This man was NEVER in trouble with anything. This man always had your back. And if he was scared, he never showed it on his face.

He was potentially a great comic artist. He love drawing, and he loved superheroes. More than anything else, he LOVED KERRY GAMMILL.
I mean LOVED. KERRY GAMMILL.

Everything he drew was inspired by K.G.
We used to talk about his run on Avengers and Power Man and Iron Fist back in the days.
And David would go on for hours.
How it would be his one dream to meet Kerry.

When i made it into professional pencilling.... the big leagues...
He would come to signings and tell me how proud he was of me.
But more with his eyes than with his mouth.
He believed i should have hit up Marvel and DC two years before i did it.

But every time i saw him, it was more important to me just to know how he was doing.
I had his phone number, but life would get in the way.
I would bump into him on the streets of Manhattan, seeing him with basketball in arm, drinking a diet coke...
something that he really enjoyed since he acquired diabetes in the Navy.

Couldn't drink that regular stuff.

We would walk into Jim Hanley's Universe, yuck it up a bit,...
then he would go his way and i would go mine. And i always said that i would call him and make it a habit of it.

Never did it.

I would let life get in the way.

I saw him on my 30th birthday. After i made the decision that i wasn't chasing women anymore. Wasn't gonna be anything except my relaxed and confident self when i did meet them. That if i didn't get the number, it ain't no thing.
This after i gave a girl i was chatting up back her number because she was playing head games.

As i walked away from her, there he was... walking across my path. We spent the rest of my birthday together just chillin' and taking pictures.
He even bought me a Big Mac. Can you beat that with a bat?

I hadn't seen him in a year or so after the last time i met up with him and i was busting my butt trying to make a Captain Marvel deadline and about nine-ish my phone starts ringing.

And my little voice told me it wasn't good. Dave's sister was on the phone. I hadn't talked to her since she was preteen. And she's calling me 10 years after i saw her last. and the first thing she said was hello. And the next thing i said was.."He's dead, isn't he?"

She was stunned.

And she said yes.

Turns out that he acquired hypertension brought on by the diabetes and he had been puking for the better part of a week and refused to go to the hospital.

Talked to his sister, girlfriend and his mother.. said he was going to drink some apple juice and then wake up in the morning and get himself checked out.

And never woke up.

I just pray he made peace with God.

That was on January 11, 2002.

The first of two Davids that died that year.

The other in February. All from High School.

I went to the wake.

I brought flowers and met up with his sister. She'd grown up so beautifully and she just had that "mommy" look. I hugged her as i went down the aisle and i saw my boy, David, ...

34 years of age...

in a casket.

I laid down the flowers next to him.

He just look like a doll.

You could tell that spark that gives life was nowhere near him now.

"You never bring me flowers" i said to him.

and just stared after laying them down on his left side.

And i remembered all of the stuff we did as homeys and made some great
funny moments by telling his sister and family all the funny stuff he did.

Because i didn't think there should be any crying at his funeral.

He was just too cool for that.

Even in the casket.

I talked about his art and his sister kept saying, "Kerry Gammill".

and i laughed and said, "Kerry Gammill."

I hugged her and left early and made an internal promise that i would tell Kerry that David said, "Hello."

I'm sitting at NYComiCon April 19th, and my road-dog Smoke, the professional wrestler,
brings Dwayne McDuffie (writer of the Justice League and BEN 10 cartoons) and Kevin Grevioux (writer/actor and creator of the Underworld movies and writer of the New Warriors for Marvel). We talked and carried on. I was really glad to meet "Uncle Dwayne" and Kev.
I walked to eventually bump into Eddie Berganza, DC editor...
I run smack into Joe Quesada's wife....
Talked shop with Dan Buckley, Marvel Enterprise President...
Bumped into Drew Johnson, artist of Supergirl...
Run right into Andy Helfer, senior partner of Serious Comics
whose shaking hands with .....

KERRY GAMMILL.

I introduced myself to him and told him how much i truly appreciated his work in the past and told him of my now 5 years deceased friend whose whole world artistically consisted of him.

He smiled and shook my hands and gave his condolences.

and i told him that David said "Hello."


So i kept my promise, David.

I told him "Hello" for you.

I still miss you though.

See you in the afterlife, dog.

Yup.

sigh.

As tough as i thought.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Million Dollar Baby

See... this is what i'm talking about.

How parents keep their kids out of trouble. How they keep their kids out of fights.
How they discipline their children.

Kids can't scream and tear up your living room if you tire them out.

One thing is for sure. No kid in ANY school is going to mess with this girl.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Preparing to CON myself....

Follow me....

It's alright... look down... i wanna show you something....!






















































You see all this above me?

There was SO much to do before i went to NYComiCon that i think i aged at least a decade in days. Something liked being locked in the Fortress of Solitude and coming out a whole lot more funky than i went in. And a lot more on the hairy side. I detest looking and feeling like a Yeti.

And i'm six foot nine. SO that's not necessarily a stretch.

So.. in a previous post, i talked about working with Verge Entertainment. My boy Joe Illidge... whom i've known since High School, by the way....when we ALL had more hair....
.... gave me a call wanting me to help him and the gang get some artists to help the Verge put together the second installment of their webisodes called Ayre Force.

Featuring Calvin Ayre. CEO of BoDog.

Of which i've learned has just retired his commission of said comglomerate.


Guess the Bear bile scandal via his nemesis Janus Winter was too much for him to bear...


heh.. bear....


So anywho... they wanted some info on artists to do the Ayre Force Webisodes and i, like i didn't have enough on my plate, said that i would take on the job if they really needed the art that badly. So...

As i cried butt-naked, fetal-positioned and sucking my thumb in my favorite stress corner of my apartment...

I helped out.

Mind you.... and don't tell anyone this...

I REALLY HAD FUN!

Was still butt-naked and crying...

but it was COOL.

i hadn't really done any real animation in-betweens since S.V.A.

And THAT was some time ago. I went to S.V.A. for animation and painting/illustration.

So it was nice to do something different than the ....eurmm.

okay.. forget that sentence.

It waa nice to do something different.

heh.

Now.. i guess you would like to SEE some of the stuff i did above actually move. Gotcha.

It's really simplistic pencils and inks on many scenes and i did like 2/3rds of the work.

Milo Stone was the brother engorged in the After Effects.

If we had time, i would have liked to do more so that it would have come out smoother.

The excuse of every artist everywhere on the planet.

Here's the first vid....
Glad you liked it!!

and now that you have an IDEA what the premise is... here's the second installment that all that work led to....

enjoy.

what?

No. I don't have popcorn, doggonit.

Just sit and watch.

I must say though... the screams are hilarious.


See anythang in purple? Click that thang!!