Category Archives: life

Big City Dare2Draw at MoCCA

I’m a frequent volunteer at MoCCA, the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art, located in the SOHO neighborhood of New York City. It’s a nice place to look at some original artwork from some of the greats in the Comic Book and Animation fields. The museum helps legitimize the art forms and gives enthusiasts a more high brow place to gather than the local comic book shop. I also attend the Big City Dare2Draw pretty regularly too, The Dare2Draw is interesting in that comic book artists gather to sketch models in action poses, and network. There is usually an informative panel discussion as well, with professionals giving their insight on the industry. Last night I participated in both events at the same time and it was pretty fantastic.

The Dare2Draw was held at MoCCA and I was there as a volunteer, setting up, moving walls and museum fixtures and more interestingly handling original artwork from Bob Kane the creator of Batman, Neal Adams one of the most brilliant artists in the industry, and the work of other artists that have been instrumental in the telling of Batman’s story since 1939. The pieces were delicately handled as the gallery space was moved so we could make room for all the artists to get a good view of the models.

The guests didn’t get to see the back breaking set-up, but here’s the view they did get.

Museum Manager Jack Walsh at the Swag Table.

The Museum got pretty full and it was just about time to get some figure drawing in. But before that Dare2Draw host, TJ Glenn, The Urban Swashbuckler, welcomed the artists to the event and made some announcements about future events and introduced the panelists and other special guests, including famed DC Comics artist, Kyle Baker. Baker, the seated gentleman taking off his jacket, is known for his work on the all ages Plastic Man series, and his gritty Hawkman segment in Wednesday Comics.

TJ Glenn says he dresses like this everyday.

Kyle Baker, Dares 2 Draw.

When the models arrived I stopped taking photos and started sketching. The figure drawing exercise is broken down into 3 secgments, the first is a series of ten poses with a two-minute duration, followed by four 5-minute poses and concluding with two 10-minute poses. I’m not showing all of the sketches, but here are a few of mine.




All in all it was a good time, even with the heavy lifting that followed the event. We had to move the walls back into place and store some dusty metal planks. But, you know when you can’t be philanthropical with money, do it with time and muscles. The next Dare2Draw is March 28. 2012 held at Different Directions at 417 West 57th St. MoCCA’s gallery hours are 12:00Pm until 5:00PM, Tuesday through Sunday. The MoCCA Art Festival is takes place April 28-29 at the 69th Regiment Armory, 68 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY.

Check their websites for upcoming events.

Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art
Big City Dare2Draw

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Filed under Art, Cultural Excurssions, life

Lupercalia

A while back, years ago even, I was in a comic book character design competition and one of the challenges was to design a character based on the month you were born. I did a good amount of research into my birth month, February and wanted to do something different than the typical Valentine’s Day, President’s Day and Black History month themes associated with the month. I’m pretty vain, like most humans especially those of us in the west, so I was looking into significant historic events that occurred on the day of my birth, February 15. I was not content to  just share my birthday with Galileo, Chris Farley, Susan B. Anthony and Jane Seymour, or a bunch of people a few days apart from my birthday, like Abraham Lincoln(Feb. 12) and Michael Jordan(Feb. 17), I knew there had to be more.

For a long time I felt I ‘d gotten the short end of the stick having been born a day too late to be a Valentine’s day baby. But I hit the mother load when doing the research for the character I was designing. There was a fertility/mating festival held in Ancient Rome on February 15th, it was called Lupercalia and it was magnificent by all accounts. Prior to Caesar ‘s rule, February was the last month of the year. For a while it was just a nebulous span of time between December, the tenth month and March, the first month called Intercalaris. January and February were just a glob of time for a while, but January came to be named after the two-headed god Janus, and February, well February was named after a lamb skin whip used to select your mate for the spring season. This whip was called a Februa, and the ceremony of the Februa occurred on the 15th commemorating the She-Wolf, Lupa who nursed the twin fathers of Rome, Remus and Romulus when they were infants.

So for some reason and ancient celebration made me feel better about my day of birth, and although It’s not a day I celebrate, I figured I remind all of you, on my actual birthday all about it. You can use it as an excuse to buy valentines candy half off and say  it’s in honor of Lupercalia, the original holiday that celebrated love.

As for my character design I did wind up using a lot of cliches, he’s black for Black History Month, and has a Napoleon Complex because it’s the shortest month of the year, and wears purple because it;s the color of amethyst, the birthstone for February. Well , it’s not the most original design, but I had fun coming up with him, I learned something and hopefully  taught you something too.

Here’s the character below.

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Filed under Comics, history, life