Virgin Killing Sweater

The thing with drawing gargoyles is modern clothing; it’s just not designed around wings and tails. It’s fine to go with the “holes in T-shirt” route for the wings, and just having the tail emerge over the top of the jeans… somehow? But it’s not great. There are some mornings where I can’t get my arm through the hole in my T-shirt and I can’t imagine getting a whole wing through one. There’s a reason gargoyles on the show wore ratty-ass tablecloths from Medieval Times–and I don’t mean 900 AD, I mean the Medieval Times out by the highway that they show on the news a lot.

And then Tumblr, dear sweet Tumblr, advised me of the evocatively-named “virgin-killing sweater” and I thought hey! That’s clothing that has wings and tails–if not practicality, or warmth–in mind!

Also if I don’t every so often defiantly draw a cute gargoyle girl, who is completely pointless from a convention-artist-alley-table standpoint, I don’t know who I am anymore.

Toothstitch

ToothstitchI keep data! Lots of data. Every time we finish at a convention I carefully note down what was popular and what’s not so popular anymore. I have spreadsheets. With graphs! I am not kidding.

I like to experiment and branch out and try new things. The new artbook is the start of that, and also I’m moving into stickers and buttons. That means smaller, tighter designs, like this one!

Does this mean the end of Doctor Who magnets? Maybe. Not right away. We’ll see how it goes at Toronto Fan Expo this weekend!

#ScienceBros

Science Bros“They’re science friends!” said my wife in an excited stage whisper as we watched the first Avengers (not to be confused with The First Avenger) and Bruce Banner and Tony Stark hung out and did science and left together at the end.

Of course they’re science friends. Tony and Bruce are the two guys who actually did the reading.

I Survived The Battle Of Canary Worf

Canary Worf“It’s a Torchwood reference!” I explained to my doubtful wife, while sketching this during the last Calgary Expo. “Okay, actually it’s a Doctor Who reference, because it was a Doctor Who episode where the Daleks were fighting the Cybermen at Torchwood One which was located at Canary Wharf…”

“And do you think people are going to get that?” she asked.

I showed the pencil sketch to two of my table visitors. They frowned at it. “It’s Canary Worf!” I told them happily. They dutifully tittered.

I was triumphant. “Seeee?”

Mike Rieger Draws Dumb Jokes And He Must Be Stopped

Dumb JokesIt was decided that I should do another art book, since I haven’t done one in forever–forever, in this case, meaning “since 2008.”

The theme was immediately obvious: the dumb joke prints I refuse to stop doing even though how much would a person want a dumb joke hanging on their wall forever really. Forever, in this case, meaning “until their girlfriend makes them take it down.”

So there’s a new artbook, featuring all the art you’ve already seen reformatted to new squarishness!

Find it at my table at conventions, or here at Lulu!

Nightmare Fuel

Nightmare Fuel-01Now that the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo is over, I can post my entry to the 2015 Artbook! The theme was Adventures in Time so, like half of the other contributors as it turned out, I drew a dinosaur.

Lisa feels sorry for him. He’s invented a prehistoric time machine out of the logs and vines that were available to him, and arrived at our horrible dystopian present. He’s even learned to write–but not spell. But where did he get the goggles from? They’re perfectly normal goggles.

Maybe He’s Born With It. Maybe It’s Wolverine.

Wolverine-01Answer: He was born with it.

This came to me while we were watching commercials, because I can only assume we’d used up all the PVR queue?  I guess?  We were living like desperate, feral cannibals.  It was a dark time, and the only way I could get through it was to make dumb jokes, and then prints and t-shirts of the dumb jokes that nobody ever buys but what the hell I love them.

Pwee

Canary-01My friend Michael considers wolves to be his totem animal.

“No, not a wolf,” my wife told him. “You sing constantly. And randomly. With songs you make up on the spot. You love sunshine and shiny things and the colour yellow. You are a canary. You are the most canary!”

Michael agrees that this is true, and this Christmas commissioned me to draw him as a canary character from Gatchaman, an anime about ninja teenagers with bird powers. Michael’s powers include the sonic tweet, a grappling-hook iPod, a small mirror with which to reflect devastating solar ray attacks, and a small dish of water to take baths in. And something involving cuttlebones.

I am told I am, for the curious, a large long-haired calico housecat, the type who are fastidious, take up a lot of space around the house, and are alternately aloof or giddy on our own mysterious schedules.

Bummer

Spider-Girls-01Future… Spider-Girl? Is comforting future… Scarlet Spider… who is a girl? Because Black Cat is dead. Which certainly would be bad.

Okay, as is probably obvious, I’m an avowed DC boy. But when I get a commission–which is what this was–I’ll draw whatever!  That’s what Google Image Search is for.

But That All Changed When The Time Nation Attacked!

Time Nation-01I was at the Edmonton Expo with Jeremy Thew (and the rest of the usual gang) and he didn’t know what to draw. “Do the Fire Nation Attacked meme from Avatar,” I said, “but with the Human Torch and Firestorm and Fire from DC Comics and… Pyro… and…”

He didn’t want to do it. And as I sat there trying to look cute and sell things to people, I thought about doing it myself. And then I thought about drawing the Ice Nation with Mr. Freeze and Captain Cold and Killer Frost (it’s been done) and then I thought about Timebenders.

And then I decided to skip the boring preamble!

For the benefit of young people, the Timebenders are Phineas Bogg from Voyagers!, Doc Brown from Back to the Future, the Twelfth Doctor, Mr. Peabody, and Sam Beckett from Quantum Leap. Want to learn more? Take a voyage to your local library–which  was a building people used to go to where there were books containing printouts of Wikipedia and you had to be quiet.

Available on shirts and everything else!

Riddle of the Mummy’s Dusty Shaft

Gargy Boys-01When I was a kid I loved my dad’s old Hardy Boys books, which had been left at my grandparents’ house. They didn’t look like the covers you see when you Google for Hardy Boys covers, which probably means that they were the pre-1959-revised editions  and I didn’t realize at the time.  Too bad I read the spines right the heck off of them.

What I also didn’t realize at the time was that it’s fun to look at the social conventions of nearly a century ago through the search engine of today.  Why, back then one would never hesitate to refer to a small, squarish air vent as a dusty shaft.  What else could it mean?

Lisa wanted me to do a serious print of the Gargoyles Trio to match Goliath and Elisa. I compromised: I restricted the silliness to separate Illustrator layers that I can click on and off.  And on and off and on. While tittering to myself because I am eight years old.

The Hardy Boys books first came out in 1929; the revised cover I’m parodying here was printed in 1959.  Gargoyles premiered twenty years ago. Why, then, does Lexington have a modern hand-held GPS instead of a more reasonable paper map? To answer: tthhhpppbbpthhh.

Tough Week for the Creative Suite

Creative Suite-01Greetings, programs!

Some time ago, my friend was doing something unrecommended with some facet of the Adobe Creative Suite. Instead of offering helpful advice, I decided to employ guilt.

“The software gets sad when you do that,” I said. “It probably has to go drinking with its buddies afterwards to unwind.”

“You mean like Tron characters?” he asked.

Hell yes I do!

So the next time you find yourself doing something you shouldn’t, consider that you might be driving your software to instability and alcoholism. Or whatever those pixels are that they drink in Tron: Legacy. Pointillism.

(Yes, I know that Amazon isn’t a program, but I wanted to have Bittorrent hit on some legal media purchasing system, and the iTunes Store isn’t as personifiable.)

Number One on the Billboard Chart

riverdale-01I started this Riverdale at CONvergence as tradesies for an older drawing of Riverdale that’s too old for me to want to look at anymore; in exchange for this new art the old art won’t be posted anymore! Is that pride? That’s probably pride.

Kind of like how George Lucas made Empire Strikes Back so we’d stop passing around VHS copies of the Star Wars Holiday Special. That plan worked, right?

Want to know more about what Riv has on his iPhone? Read Twilight Detective Agency #1!

Five Minutes In The Box For High-Sticking

motherpuckers-01We had just the best time at CONvergence last weekend. Just the absolute greatest.

Calgarians will remember our succession of local, fan-run conventions. They were fun! They served their purpose. For the most part they predated the Internet, so they were a place for like-minded individuals to meet other like-minded individuals and talk about books and movies and learn Klingon and whatnot. Back in the days before we could do that with our phones.

Unfortunately the local fan-run conventions were run by volunteers and shared a certain lack of organizational skill. Which is my tactful way of saying they were uniformly terrible. When you compare them to the well-oiled trade-show machine that is San Diego, and the smaller shows like Calgary and Seattle that are built on the same model, the fan-run conventions have fallen by the wayside, at least for me.

But. But. It was announced that the Gathering of the Gargoyles convention was going to reconvene at CONvergence for the 20th anniversary of the show. So we were there, you guys.

And I sort of expected the poorly-run fan convention I was used to, so I was extreeeeemely proactive in my e-mails arranging an Artist’s Alley table. At any moment I expected the organizer to lose my table application, give my table to someone else, forget I existed, forget how many applications they’d received, et cetera et cetera, and so I planned and planned and planned and planned.

None of that happened. Every interaction with J.P. and with the convention in general was completely professional. Also, it became clear that the folks who go to that convention love that convention, and feel a real ownership and pride in it. It really took us back to the old days. Thanks for the awesome show, CONvergence!

Of course, hanging out with the Gargoyles fans would be a complete blast even if it were in an alley. Next to a dumpster. Behind a Hooters. We have to make this a regular thing, you guys, I am dead serious. You guys are inspiring and awesome and I came away with a powerful need to draw Gargoyles art, and so did all of you, even the ones who don’t draw, and that is the amazing part! That’s what it is to be part of a fandom. You get a lot from trade-show conventions but you don’t get that.

I told you all that to tell you this: Michael asked for Puck on a round sticker that he could stick to actual pucks for Twogargs tables. I let that notion roll around in the back of my head like a plinko game while we drove back to Thunder Bay from Saint Paul (lovely drive!) and here’s what rolled out.

I miss you guys already.

Freeze Out

Freeze OutThe internet is in agreement: Queen Elsa from Frozen should be paired with Jack Frost. It does make sense. Apart from the cryokinesis, they both have pretty strong isolation issues. Those crazy kids could make it work, I think.

Of course, where’s the fun in doing what everyone else is doing?  Let’s pair Elsa with a creepy old German scientist! Now it’s your turn to float in your cryogenic stasis tube, Mr. Freeze–the queen’s got your ice gun!

“Why would Elsa need a freeze gun,” you ask, “she’s actually the last person who–” and to you I say, go draw your own awesome Frozen mashups.  With my freeze ray I will stop the backtalk!

Next Time I Take The Stairs

Take The StairsYou know, all this time and I’ve never drawn Elisa Maza? Isn’t that weird? That’s pretty weird.

I sketched this while running my table at Emerald City. No real reason, just on a whim! I have a few Gargoyles prints in my book and they don’t really move. People like them, they remember Gargoyles fondly but they don’t go metric bananapants about it like they do for Doctor Who.

Which is a shame! And that’s why I’m looking forward to Convergence in Minneapolis in July, which will be a Gargoyles Gathering sneakily held inside a different convention. Waiting. Growing. Making ready to burst out of its chest.

Did You Wish Really Hard?

Amy-PondThere, see?  Shonna isn’t the only one who can do slightly dirty prints of Calgary Expo guests.

This started out as a fun idea to draw Amy Pond in one of the TARDIS dresses you see at conventions a lot, but it went somewhere else pretty quick.  Public Call Box?  Pull to Open?  What is the key for?

I’m so very sorry, Karen Gillan.

The Doctors Four

Doctors FourAt Edmonton Expo I promised that the prints of The Doctors Three I had at the table would be the very very last ones ever. That was only partially a marketing gimmick; at the time we already knew that Peter Capaldi was going to be the new Doctor Who.

Of course we didn’t find out what his costume was going to look like for quite some time. And then it was some time after that until I remembered that I’d better get that print updated for Emerald City.

So today I spent the day that most of us celebrate spring by travelling forward in time one hour by adding the Twelfth Doctor to this print.  I was originally going to put him in the back but of course that doesn’t make any sense. So it’s the back row for you, potato-head!

An intelligent person would have thought ahead and coloured each Doctor on a different layer.  I did not.

Now available as a T-shirt!

And other stuff!

Riv and Silent Hawk

Riv and Silent Hawk-01

Michael and I were interviewed in the December Gargoyles Reawakening podcast, during which he said “Riv and Silent Hawk–you gotta draw that!” which serves as an excellent example of our shared creative process.  While I don’t remember the context exactly–you’d have to go listen to the podcast to find out!–the collision of Riverdale and Hawkstone with Jay and Silent Bob is appropriate because Hawkstone and I are the strong and silent type, and Michael and Riverdale are inordinate yappers. As the podcast will reveal.

So I decided to celebrate the Christmas break by switching hosting providers and putting Michael’s idea to pixels. Merry Christmas!

Copperstone

CopperstoneUsually I like to write about where I get my ideas from, especially when it’s a idea for a joke!  But this time I just don’t remember.  Guess I just wanted to draw Angela’s tushie! And technically also Bronx’s tushie.

Are young people still aware of the iconic 1953 Coppertone ad campaign? I didn’t realize, before doing research for this print, that the tagline had been “don’t be a paleface!”  Wow.  It was a different time.

Hey, two Gargoyles pics in the same weekend!

*Note: I was not alive in 1953.  I’m not that old.

Gold

I needed to update my pricing for commission sketches at conventions. And by update I of course mean rip off completely from my wife.

The premise is logical, and is one of those things that seems obvious in retrospect: it’s not nearly so much effort or time to draw a character’s head or bust than it is to draw a full figure. Therefore it should cost less.

I wanted to do a new ink drawing as an example and decided to do a gargoyle pinup since I hadn’t done one in a while.  (And listening to Gargoyles Reawakening makes me nostalgic!)

So then of course I had a new ink drawring that needed Illustratoring. Just for funsies! I also made her a blonde and coloured her all bright gold, which I never do. Also for funsies!

For more funsies, spot the differences between the analog pen version and the finished digital version!