Friday, August 29, 2014

Marilyn Monroe (illustrated by Max Rugers)

Marilyn Monroe was an American sex symbol in the 1950’s and early 1960’s. She is known from her career as an acrtess, model and singer, as well as from her untimely death.

She appeared in films such as Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, The Seven Year Itch and Some Like It Hot as well as several others.

She died on August 5th, 1962.

In Sandman she appears in one panel in the first issue of the series. She appears in Mort Notkin’s dream, in which he is at a party dressed as a clown.

Marilyn Monroe appears in Sandman # 1, on page 31, in panel 4.

Max did a great job with this portrait. I like the close up perspective and I like her coy wink. The colors are a bit muted compared to some of Max’s other portraits and it works really well here. It’s always tricky to do a portrait of a real celebrity, but Max always seems to excel at this type of portrait and this is no exception.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Marco Polo’s Expedition Guide (illustrated by Anna Hybsier)

In 1271, Marco Polo was sixteen and he set out on his first expedition.

Along with his father and uncle, there were two elderly Dominican Priests and an expedition guide.

This is the expendition guide who helped them journey to Kublai Kahn’s empire.

He can be seen in Sandman # 39, on page 12, panel 3.

I really like this portrait from Anna. I like his hat and the colors she used for this portrait. I also like that she included some of the Italian backgrounds in this portrait. It definitely helps set the scene for this expedition.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Burgess’ Guard # 2 (illustrated by Max Rugers)

In the first issue of Sandman, Dream is accidentally captured by Roderick Burgess, who was attempting to capture Death.

Burgess had many guards watching over the captured Dream King throughout the years and this particular guard worked for Burgess in 1947.

He appears in Sandman # 1 on page 19, in panel 2.

I really like Max’s portrait for this character. He gives him an almost “mob” look about him, both with his outfit and the positioning of his body. I love the expression on his face. Another thing I really like about this is the background. Max used a torn up newspaper to add both texture to the portrait and also an interesting background. This is definitely a great portrait for one of Burgess’ guards.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Bird # 8 (illustrated by Anna Hybsier)

After Nada‘s discovers a mysterious stranger standing below her window one evening and realizes that she is in love with this man she tried everything she can to find out who he is. Her loyal subjects search for this stranger thought out the cities and forests and find no trace of him. After all attempts fail, she asks for help from The King Of Birds.

This is one of the birds searching for the stranger.

This bird appears in Sandman # 9 on page 8 in panel 4.

I am not familiar with bird species, particularly African birds and so I am unsure what type of bird appears in the published comic.

I really like this portrait from Anna. I really like the colors she used. The colors really highlight this bird as being bird that could live in one of the many forests in Nada’s kingdom. There is a peacefulness about this portrait that I really like. This is a fantastic portrait of one of the many birds from Sandman.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Airline Customs Agent # 1 (illustrated by John Carmine)

In The Kindly Ones, Rose journeys to England after Zelda gives her a message from her grandmother saying that if she goes to her she’ll return her heart (which is a reference to the final chapter of The Doll’s House, where Unity took Rose’s heart to assume the roll of the dream vortex).

Rose goes to England and on the flight she sits next to a guy who smells sour and unwashed and is reading a pornographic magazine.

When she gets off the plane, she is stopped by a customs agent who looks through her personal belongings. The creepy guy walks past her as the agent is looking at her lacy underwear.

This Airline Customs Agent appears in Sandman # 62, on page 1, in panel 5.

John did a fantastic job with this character. In the published comic we do not see this man’s face, but John captured a perfect expression of embarrassment, which is how I think I would feel if I was looking through someone’s luggage and ran across some sexy underwear.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Raven # 33 (illustrated by Max Rugers)

In The Kindly Ones, hundreds of ravens gather in the dreaming with the expectation of war and death.

As Dream goes to challenge the Kindly Ones, the ravens raise their eyes to the storm and wait.

This is one of the ravens.

This raven appears in Sandman # 69, on page 8, in panel 3.

I love this portrait from Max. Aside from the fact that the raven looks awesome, I like the dark blue he used for the background. This works well to highlight the darkness of the raven, but it also works because of the storm raging in The Dreaming.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Awards Ceremony Audience Member # 1 (illustrated by Anna Hybsier)

Richard Madoc had writers block, but after trading Erasmus Fry a Bezioar for the muse Calliope he becomes a successful writer and a celebrity.

Richard Madoc won many awards and this woman was in attendance at one of the award ceremonies where Richard spoke.

She appears in Sandman # 17 on page 13 in panel 1.

This is a wonderful portrait from Anna. With characters as obscure as this one, Anna has to create this character based simply on the back of her head and I think she captured the type of person who may attend an awards ceremony. She seems like she could easily be a celebrity. I also like that Anna included other people in the audience, placing her in the setting of the awards ceremony. I really like the details that Anna put into this portrait.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Fundamentalist # 2 (illustrated by Max Rugers)

In Preludes and Nocturnes, when John Dee takes control of the Dream ruby chaos escalates throughout the world.

In New York City, a group of Fundamentalists, feeling confident that this chaos was the result of Armageddon and that they were not taken by the rapture and were left on earth. They knelt on the streets, weeping and praying to their “suddenly distant God.”

This Fundamentalist appears in Sandman # 7, on page 2, in panel 3.

Max did a wonderful job with this portrait. I think he really captured the despair and anguish this character feels, knowing he has been abandoned by God.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Undercut Patron # 3 (illustrated by John Carmine)

In Death: The High Cost Of Living, Sexton and Didi go to The Undercut and listen to Foxglove perform her first concert.

This character is one of the more unique characters who is at The Undercut. He definitely stands out while reading the comic.

He appears in Death: The High Cost Of Living # 2, on page 14, in panel 1.

John did a great job with this portrait. Both the published character and John’s portrait reminds me of Elijah Wood in the Sin City film….I think it’s due to the whiteness of his eyes. There is a simplicity to the portrait, but at the same time the positioning of the body makes it feel a bit complex. I really like this portrait!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

American Sailor (illustrated by Anna Hybsier)

In Worlds’ End, Brant and a group of people trapped in an inn listen to stories told by fellow patrons of Worlds’ End.

Jim tells a tale of her experience sailing the world aboard several ships, most notably The Sea Witch.

There are several sailors aboard The Sea Witch and this man is an American Sailor.

He appears in Sandman # 53, on page 6, in panel 4.

This is a fantastic portrait from Anna. I really like the details she gave to this character. He has kind eyes, which I really like.

Here is the American Sailor…

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Man # 99 (illustrated by Max Rugers)

Once every century Death becomes mortal to better understand the lives she is taking.

In 1994, Death once again became mortal and spend the day in New York City, as a young woman named Didi, where she met a young man named Sexton.

After having her ankh stolen by The Eremite, she wanted to buy a new one and so she purchased one from a street seller.

This man walked past Didi and Sexton as she was picking out a new ankh.

He appears in Death: The High Cost Of Living # 3, on page 12, in panel 8.

I really like this portrait from Max. He approached this character with a more sketchy style than he typically uses, but it works well and still contains a level of details that is seen in most of his work. I also really like the added addition of the paper to the portrait. It’s loud, but feels appropriate for a character living in New York.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Pucci (illustrated by John Carmine)

Merv Pumpkinhead has several bat helpers that follow him around throughout The Kindly Ones.

He appears when Merv is working and Matthew stops to talk to him about previous ravens.

The bat helpers appear again when Merv and Abudah are moving a volcano.

The Pucci and the other bat helpers appear a third time when Merv is about to launch an assault on The Kindly Ones. Pucci can be seen carrying tiny machine gun.

Pucci appears in Sandman # 57, 60, and 66.

This is an awesome portrait from John. In The Kindly Ones, the bat simply black bat shapes, but John gave him the features of a bat. I really like bats and so this character and the details of this portrait are particularly awesome. This is another of my favorite portraits from John.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Ash’s Kin # 3 (illustrated by Anna Hybsier)

In “The Hunt”, Vassily tells his granddaughter Celeste a story of how he met his wife and her grandmother, although Celeste suspects this is just another fairy tale “from the old country.”

While on his journey he encounters a deer and chases it for many miles, enjoying the thrill of the hunt. Just as he was about to kill the deer, a young girl names Ash leapt on the deer and broke it’s neck.

Ash returned to her people, with Vassily, bring the fallen animal for their meal.

This man is one of the men in Ash’s tribe.

He appears in Sandman # 38, page 15, panel 1.

Anna did a fantastic job with this portrait. I like his curly hair and the slight wolfish appearance of this character. He looks like a normal man, but there is something about his face that seems a little like a wolf. I think it’s the shape of his jaw and his facial hair. This is another great portrait from Anna.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Worlds’ End Patron # 15 (illustrated by Max Rugers)

After Brant Tucker crashes the car he wanders through the woods and finds himself at an Inn.

He goes into the inn to seek medical attention for his friend Charlene Mooney. She is taken care of and Brant is given something to drink, which causes him to go to sleep.

When he awakes, he is greeted with a bowl of stew from one of the men working at the inn. This character can be seen in the background of the panel.

He appears in Sandman # 51, on page 9 in panel 2.

There is absolutely nothing known about this character, including what he looks like. When finding the characters from this story I thought he might have been Klaproth, but his posture does not match that of Klaproth or Petrefax.

This is a great portrait from Max. I like that he took this obscure character and gave him personality and life. Max’s familiarity with Sandman helped him create a character that easily fits in with the other patrons of Worlds’ End.

Here is Worlds’ End Patron # 15…

Friday, August 15, 2014

Scarecrow # 4 (illustrated by John Carmine)

In the 8th chapter of The Kindly Ones, Dream met five small children who were searching for their lost mother. He entertained them with scarecrows “who whispered among themselves in the voices of the stars of the silent screen.”

He appears in Sandman # 64, page 1, panel 1.

I really like John’s portrait for this character. I like the perspective he chose for this character. It gives the impression that this character is not scary (as some scarecrows may be perceived), but quite jovial and entertaining for the children.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Dancing Salamander # 2 (illustrated by Max Rugers)

When Dream entertains a group of children, in The Kindly Ones, several dancing salamanders bring them plates filled with exotic flavors of ice cream and fruits they have never seen or tasted before.

This salamander is one of the residents of the Dreaming who serves the children the ice cream and fruit.

The Dancing Salamander appears in Sandman # 64 on page 1, in panel 2.

This is another great portrait from Max. I love the brightness of the character in contrast to the background. The color choices really brings a warmth and playfulness to the portrait, which is necessary to such a fantastic character.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Faery # 32 (illustrated by John Carmine)

Faeries can be frightening.

In Sandman # 19, Morpheus invited the Faery Folk to watch the first performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, written by William Shakespeare.

There are Faeries that look sweet and innocent and then there are Faeries who look scary. Most Faeries seem to have a mischievous side (with, it seems, very few exceptions).

This Faery is one of the scary ones.

This Faery appears in Sandman # 19, on page 7, in panel 1.

I like that there are a wide variety of Faeries that attended the first performance of this play, on June 25th, 1593. It allows for each artist to interpret the Faeries and John did a fantastic job of that. The close up perspective of this character definitely gives him a more menacing quality than he might have had if we weren’t so close. The shadowing on his face also gives him a more menacing appearance. I like that we get a glimpse of his personality and he’s definitely one of the mischievous ones…

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Steadfast City Leader # 4 (illustrated by Max Rugers)

In Worlds’ End, Brant Tucker finds himself at an inn, trapped by an unusual storm.

While wandering around the inn he encounters a man known only as The Seeker. He is searching for a reality where Prez Rickard becomes president.

The Seeker recounts the story of Prez’s legacy to Brant, including a few of his important contributions to his hometown and the world.

One of the things the Seeker tells Brant to demonstrate Prez’s intelligence, integrity and his desire to help his community revolves around a particular day when his mother lost sight of her son. She found him, several hours later, with the city leaders of Steadfast discussing civics and “answering their questions with a depth and perspicacity that amazed his elders.”

This woman is one of the city leaders who spoke with Prez that day.

She appears in Sandman # 54, on page 4, in panel 3.

I like Max’s portrait for this character. In the published comic, this woman is barely visible and so he had to create a character that seemed to fit in with the rest of the visible characters in this panel. I think he did an excellent job with this task and with this character.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Corpse Pile # 2 (illustrated by John Carmine)

This is one of the weirdest characters within the Sandman universe…and I question whether it can be categorized as a single character or a group of single characters. I decided to approach this as a single character since there isn’t much definition for the individual characters and since there are multiple “corpse piles” within the series.

This particular corpse pile appears in Season Of Mists and is shown as Lucifer speaks to his minions and demons in Hell and proclaims that he is waiting for Dream to arrive in Hell, attempting to free Nada from torment.

The Corpse Pile appears in Sandman # 22, on page 21, in panel 4.

John’s portrait is equally as disturbing as the published comic. There is an element of sexuality in this portrait that makes it even creepier than simply the implication that this is a pile of corpses and tortured people.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Carrion (illustrated by Max Rugers)

In The Doll’s House, Rose and Gilbert find themselves in a hotel hosting a Cereal Convention, which is a convention for serial killers.

Carrion appears in Sandman # 14, on page 15, panel 6.

Carrion is part of a panel discussing getting the art of getting paid to reveal the location of the bodies these people have killed. He points out that if they are caught they won’t get any money and he is chided by Hello Little Girl, who reminds him that they don’t kill to make money.

Max did a fantastic job with this character. His portrait captures the wild energy that is apparent in the published comic. I love the contrast between the darkness and his blue hair. This is a great portrait of a very unique and memorable serial killer.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Roman Citizen # 143 (illustrated by Steve Rolson)

In Sandman # 30, Augustus Caesar and his friend Lycius sit on some steps near the marketplace dressed as beggars and discussing politics, power and dreams.

This Roman Citizen is one of the many citizens who pass through the market on this day.

He is barely visible in Sandman # 30, page 13, and in panel 4.

I like obscure characters like these because it gives each artist to interpret the characters that is not limiting them to drawing a specific character in the book. I really enjoy seeing what everyone brings to these characters. Steve did a fantastic job with this character. He basically created this character from his impression and expectations of what this Roman citizen would look like and I think he did an excellent job. I like that Steve gave this character curly hair. Even though it’s something seemingly simple and insignificant, to me it adds a neat feature to the character that is very distinctive and helps add to his personality.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Bar Patron # 21 (illustrated by John Carmine)

In The Doll’s House, we are introduced to Hob Gadling, who throughout the centuries, becomes one of Dream’s only friends.

Dream and Hob meet every century in a pub beginning around 1362-1370.

Around 1562-1570 Hob and Dream meet once again in a pub and discuss Hob’s current good fortune.

This Bar Patron is one of the many men who is in the pub during this meeting.

This Bar Patron appears in Sandman # 13, on page 9, in panel 3.

This is a great portrait from John. I really like how he interpreted this character. I love the details in his face and how John made him look. He definitely fits within the particular point in history and feels like he would be a regular patron of this pub.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Aurelian Palace Guard # 3 (illustrated by Max Rugers)

Cluracan is sent to Aurelia to prevent an alliance between the folk of the plain cities.

When arriving at the palace, he is greeted as an envoy and is offered food and a room in the palace.

There is a guard assigned to “protect” Cluracan, who stands outside his door. Cluracan wonders if the guard is to protect him or prevent him from leaving.

This Aurelian Palace Guard appears in Sandman # 52, on page 10.

I really like this portrait from Max. In the published comic we get a good sense of this character, but Max takes it to a new level with the detailed line work on his face. This definitely gives us more insight into the character. He now seems a more hardened and like someone who can handle themselves in a fight. I really appreciate the details that Max adds to these portraits. He really brings these characters to life.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Citizen Of Baghdad # 50 (illustrated by John Carmine)

Like many of the Citizens of Baghdad, in Ramadan, this character appears in the Baghdad marketplace while Haroun al Raschid takes Dream on a tour of his majestic city.

This character appears in Sandman # 50, on page 24, in the first panel. He is a very small barely noticeable character in the background in the middle of this panel.

This is an excellent portrait from John. This character is barely noticeable and not much more than a human shaped blob in the background of this panel, but John brought him to life. I like the realistic approach that John took. This is one of my favorite portraits John has done so far.

Here is Citizen Of Baghdad # 50…

Monday, August 4, 2014

Dead Man # 6 (illustrated by Steve Rolston)

In The Sandman Special # 1, Orpheus journeys to the Underworld to rescue his recently deceased wife. Before standing before Lord Hades and Queen Persephone he encounters a throng of the dead.

This Dead Man is one of the many dead men in the Underworld.

He appears in The Song Of Orpheus, on page 31, in panel 3. He is to the far left of the panel.

Steve did a great job with this portrait. I love that he used a blue pencil when drawing this character. The blue creates a coolness that is incredibly appropriate with someone in the Underworld. I think that this character’s facial expression is perfect.

Here is Dead Man # 6…