A cartoon inspired by 80s stand-up video games? Yes, please. The girls have been just as enchanted by the Wreck-It Ralph trailer (below) as I am. This looks to be a trip back in time powered by sweet, sweet video game love. So, when Monday night rolled around and it was time to draw, Ralph and his sarcastic love interest, Vanellope, were a natural choice. Enjoy!
The girls and I have looking at the incredible art of Disney Artist, Victoria Ying, in quiet amazement and, I’ll say it, more than a little envy on my part for a long while now. Last night, we saw her ballerina cats on a 2012 calendar she created and had to draw. Ballet and cats? The girls were sold.
One of the highlights of HeroesCon for us was the Womanthology panel. The remarkable ladies on the panel kindly invited Grace to participate and even gave her an incredible poster they all signed afterwards. They were so nice and encouraging to her. We made many new friends – Rachel Deering, Rachel Pandich and the amazing Becka Seashols, an incredibly prolific artist. (Seriously, follower her on Instagram and just see how much she cranks out in a day … awesome). Click here to see her Web site and here to follow her on Twitter!
Becka draws lots and lots of Star Wars characters, so, tonight we drew Jabba the Hut for her!
And, here’s a photo from the panel!
Like many of you, the girls and I have fallen head over heels for the newest Disney cartoon, Gravity Falls. With excellent vocal actors and amazing art direction that feels positively inspired by Schoolhouse Rock, it’s a must watch … and draw.
First up, is an awesome sketch of Mabel & Dipper by our buddy, Joe Hunter, whose work you can see here: http://ghostbucket.com/
Here’s ours …
And, for kicks, Grace got in on the act to draw the evil gnomes …
(P.S. Cate is mad at me. She meant to write “I am a freak,” but, as she often reminds me of Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica, I had to leave it as “I am a frak.”)
And, if you’ve ever wanted to see gnomes puking rainbows, this is the show for you!
And, I threw in Wendy & Soos for good measure!
Two folks we’re really looking forward to seeing are Joe Quinones and Maris Wicks. Apart, they’re awesome. Together? It’s hard to imagine that must amazing working in one studio at the same time. The girls and I had fun rummaging around their blogs for inspiration … and you should, too.
And, now a word from Joe!
@5MinuteMarvels Great stuff! Thanks for sending it along. We'll see you next week at Heroes!—
Joe Quinones (@Joe_Quinones) June 16, 2012
HereosCon is almost here! Less than two weeks! Wow. One of our favorite friends last year was Andy Runton, creator of the Owly books. He has a joy of drawing and for fans that is absolutely infectious! He also has a wonderful habit of drawing Owly and Wormy as a wide array of characters … evidenced by hundreds of “Owly As …” sketches on his Web site. So, Cate drew Owly as a Hula Girl, Grace as a ballerina and me as The Thing & Human Torch!
Check out Andy’s incredible work on his site: http://www.andyrunton.com/
The girls are excited to see her at HeroesCon in (gulp) two short weeks and wanted to do a collaborative drawing for her. Check out Steph’s work at: stephaniebuscema.com
It was my pick tonight, and I wanted to draw something from Becky Cloonan. While I love her art, finding something the girls could draw was hard. Conan seemed a bit much for two little girls. But, they absolutely loved this monkey Becky says (on her blog) was created for an opera house.
The monkey’s over the shoulder view was a source of some consternation for the girls … and a teachable moment. Grace did it her way, but did ask “What’s on the front of his shirt?” The flowing ribbons and smoke also vexed them a bit. Cate got mad at herself and said, “That head! I can’t make it look just like the picture!” We calmed down and agreed it was okay to do it in our own styles AND (more importantly) that Cate was just 7 and Becky had been drawing for many more years than she. And, that if she practiced Cate could get there, too. That seemed to chill her out. She proceeded to ink without tears.
For more of Becky’s work, check out Conan the Barbarian and her novels, The Mire and Wolves. Or, you can visit http://estrigious.com/becky/
A few weeks ago, I read Brian Ralph’s zombie survival story, “Daybreak.” Popular culture is completely flooded with zombie stories, so I almost didn’t pick it up. But, I’m glad I did. It was a fresh take on a well-trod story told entirely in 4-panel pages from the point of view of the reader. Good stuff. But, fare for 5 Minute Marvels drawings? … not so much.
But, looking through Brian’s online portfolio, we found Waltee, a mascot he created for the Walters Art Museum. The girls loved it. We drew. And, had a great time.
Check out more of Brian’s Work at http://bralph.com/
It was Cate’s pick tonight and “super bunny” was her request. We’ve drawn Hoppy the Marvel Bunny before, so we went in search of something new … and it wasn’t too hard to settle on Jojo from Ben Caldwell’s Dare Detectives who Cate thought was “super cool.”
The girls had fun, laughing as they drew … and doing a good job. We talked about using guide shapes and that Jojo’s body was composed largely of a triangle. Don’t ask me exactly why Grace has Jojo saying “Feel the Burn.” She laughed about it and said he looked pumped up. She really got the attitude in his eyes.
I am happy with the lower half of my work, but the face looks like, well, a dog. So, in 5 Minute Marvels tradition, I put up the art. But, I did take a another crack at it after the girls went to bed. I’m happier, but Jojo’s forehead should still be larger. Ben, you make it look darn easy … but it ain’t.
Check out Ben’s incredible daily sketch work here: http://purgetheory.blogspot.com/ And, join me in praying DC finally comes to their senses and gives him a Wonder Woman book. What *are* they thinking!?!?
Working on this blog for the past two years, we’ve learned that sometimes, even 5 minutes is too much. And, that forcing drawing when you’re not in the mood can lead to a fun activity being a frustrating one.
Such was tonight, when Grace was bombed after a long day of school, Girl Scouts and homework. So, we were going to let it go when Cate said she wanted to draw. We gave Grace the night off and looked for inspiration, which she found in Maris Wicks’ “Yoga Hulk” … a perfect subject given our need to “get into the zen” of sketching tonight.
A few nights later, she asked me to draw with her. A few weeks later, Cate decided it might be fun to join in. 5 Minute Marvels was born. And, It’s been so much fun these last two years, creating memories the Miner family will remember forever.
We’ve made so many friends around the world — professional comic book creators, aspiring artists and writers, kids who dream of making comics someday and adults who’ve never stopped dreaming about it.
Here is art created to celebrate this 500th post by just a few of our many wonderful friends. Thank you so much for being part of this journey. We hope to draw with you for years to come! And, for those of you who’ve followed us and drawn with us — I hope it’s been half as much fun for you as it’s been for us.
Grace Miner (8)
Cate Miner (7)
Kelly Sue DeConnick: http://kellysue.com/
Kelly Thompson: http://1979semifinalist.wordpress.com/
Tara Abbamondi: www.tarabba.com
Jordan Gibson: http://flavors.me/jordangibson
Joel Carroll: http://www.joelcarroll.com/frontpage/
“Calamity Jon” Morris: http://calamityjonsave.us/
Erin Kelly: http://literateknits.wordpress.com/
Jamie and Tyler (10) Cosley: http://www.jamiecosley.com/
Janet K. Lee: http://www.j-k-lee.com/Home.html
Calliope den Ouden: http://www.inktspatten.nl/
Karine Charlebois: http://kantharasloft.net/
Meredith McClaren: http://iniquitousfish.blogspot.com/
Philip A. Buck: http://www.philipabuck.com/
J. Robert & Samantha (6) Deans: http://icrvn.com/blog/
Josh Bowron: http://discernland.blogspot.com/
Jason & Marghread Enright: http://wecomics.com/
So, a few of our pals got caught up in our little hiatus. The first is this incredible Spider-Man sketch by 5-year-old, Charlie Breedlove. Charlie’s mom, Jessica, has an amazing site called kidsART2canvas.com where she puts her spin on children’s drawins to transform them into works of art. You need to stop and check it out here!
Charlie is a chip off the old block.
The second is a little sketch sent in by my buddy, Father Josua Bowron, who proves that priests can be geeks, too … and tremendous Dave Sim fans.
Wow. You take a day off from posting … life intervenes … and suddenly it’s a month. But, we’ve been drawing and we HAD to end the haitus for one of our favorite people, Return of the Dapper Men artist and artist/writer of the “Wonderland Alphabet.” Happy Birthday, JKL! And, buy the book here!
As you can see, we’ve been having a lot of fun with the Ed Emberley fingerprint cartoons … me probably more than anyone else. I was inspired to create a “thumbs-eye view” of the classic Amazing Spider-Man #50 by the great John Romita, Sr. I really had fun with it, but now that I’ve finished, I want to redo it … “thumbday” soon.
The girls enjoyed my fingerprint Godzilla from the other night and wanted to get into the act. And, for the first time, Mama 5 Minute Marvel, my wife, Kim, got in on the act! Awsome!
I decided to add in our typical superheroes theme into my Ed Emberley thumbnail drawings, riffing on Jim Lee’s Justice League. Sorry for the crummy pictures, the scanner is on the fritz.
Cate (Aged 6)
Grace (Aged 8) — a drawing of our family
Kim (Aged … She’d Kill Me)
Dad (Current Age Belies Maturity)
Gracie is excited about her school studies for Black History Month and asked to draw a black superhero. There aren’t enough of them, but there are some great options from which to choose. She wanted to draw Storm. Excellent choice in my book.
As I started reading Uncanny X-Men with issue #191 (my very insightful mom got me a subscription as a surprise), there is only one Storm … angry Mohawk Storm. Grace was really nervous about attempting a profile, but I think her drawing is adorable.
I had fun doodling Doctor Who monsters from the Pertwee era with Jon Morris. So, I thought I’d create some more “Who-ddles” (Doctor Who doodles … get it? Yeah. You probably do.) from the days of William Hartnell, my favorite Doctor. Ya’ kinda’ have to be a total Whovian geek to recognize or, worse, like these characters … and I fit that bill. It’s a Monoid (from The Ark) and a Menoptera and an Optera (from The Web Planet).
The girls, Kim & I were fortunate enough to visit the circus this last weekend … and Gracie was quite taken with the tigers. She drew the picture above while the tumblers were on. I loved it, but was compelled to draw some famous tigers — Prince Tuftan from “Kamandi,” Shere Kahn from the “Jungle Book” and Mr. Tawny Tawky from Fawcett’s Captain Marvel.
This one’s been a long time coming. Cate has been talking about drawing Nemo … and then deciding not to draw. But, I think it was worth the wait. When she does draw, Cate is attentive for both shape and detail. Her Nemo has all the necessary tags and really shows she understand how our favorite clownfish is constructed. I can’t wait to see how she continues to develop as an artist.
I love kooky comics. Since I was a kid, I’ve lived in the extremes. I want my comics to either be really real or really “comic booky.” That’s why I loved Bill Mantlo’s work even before I knew his name. ROM, Hulk, Cloak & Dagger, etc. … when I was Grace’s age, they were just full of odd characters and far out concepts — products of the imagination of Bill Mantlo. Tragically, Bill was injured in a hit and run accident in 1995 and can no longer write. This holiday season, a call went out for Bill fans to draw fan art and send it to him to cheer him up. So, the girls and I decided to draw one of Bill’s most enduring creations: Rocket Raccoon. It’s not too hard to encourage kids to draw a space-hopping raccoon … and that’s thanks to Bill Mantlo.
Tonight’s 5 Minute doodle (okay, maybe 8 minutes) is for my good friend, Josh Bowron. Knowing of my fondness for all things Kirby AND my penchant for reading “fun, but failed” comics concepts, Josh bought me Issue 1 of Kobra, which is one of (if not THE) last issues Jack ever penciled for DC.
Josh is a comics nut with wild, eclectic taste, an aspiring comics writer and a priest at my church. A comic reading priest … why did I have to wait 38 years for this? Learn more about Father Josh, his thoughts, faith and interests at his blog, Discernland.
One of the main reasons we haven’t posted much of late is that Grace was rehearsing for her dance group’s role in The Nutcracker. (She played a rat and a ginger snap.) This was her second year in the show and she had a complete blast. So, when I asked her what she wanted to draw tonight, she said, “Hawkeye … as a nutcracker.” What an awesome idea! So, I joined her by drawing the original lineup of the West Coast Avengers … as nutcrackers.
Our favorite comic-lovin’ cousins are back with an “X-Men: First Class”-inspired ode to Magneto. A word from Maddy, AKA “College Girl”:
The other day Erin (24), her cousins Miranda (18) and Jessica (15) and I (18) all watched X-Men First Class. It was Miranda and Jessica’s first time seeing it and they loved it, so we decided to celebrate by doing 5 Minute Marvels of Magneto! Erin and Jessica both focused on Magneto’s Jewish heritage whereas Miranda and I went for more general shots. We all cheated by the bucketloads. But Jessica wants me to tell you that she cheated the least.
Don’t worry ladies, as long as you didn’t stress out while drawing, cheatin’s okay by us.
The 5 Minute Marvels experience started just under two years ago when I got the Super Hero Squad Wii game … and Grace got excited and wanted to draw the characters.
So, it was a pleasant surprise when, after I bought the Star Wars Clone Wars LEGO game this week, Gracie now wants to take on drawing Star Wars. And, the style from the Cartoon Network’s Clone Wars series was perfect. So, “Draw or Draw Not … there is no try.” 🙂
For my birthday, Grace generously offered to let me take a trip down memory lane and draw The Outsiders. I remember very clearly visiting family for Christmas when I was about 12 or so. I was immediately drawn to my cousin Sean’s copy of 36. I was familiar with Metamorpho, but not the work of Alan Davis. It was a comic style unlike anything I’d seen before and I was entranced immediately. Since that day, I’ll buy anything the man touches. Anything. He is a master. He makes the oddest character in any pantheon amazing. Just look at this cover! You wanna read it right now, don’t you? So do I. I’m going to get my copy … which I convinced my cousin to let go of in 1986.
David Lopez is one of our oldest and bestest friends on 5 Minute Marvels. If you haven’t seen his 5 Minute Nightcrawler … and video to demonstrate exactly he created amazingness it in just 5 minutes … GO NOW.
Not only is David one of our favorite artists, but Mystic is our favorite new books in a long, long time. And, Giselle, one of the main protagonists is a character that deserves a long history in comics. This is a tremendous book for antone and a triumph for the creative team. Excelsior!
On a side note, there’s a been a lot said lately about the characterization and graphic depiction of women in mainstream comics lately. Honestly, I’ve said a lot about it myself on Twitter. I feel like we’re headed in the wrong directions. It’s not just because I have little girls. It’s because I think it’s possible to write and draw women who are engaging, attractive and, dare I say it, sexy without depicting them in ridiculous poses and proportions. Our heroines often look like they’d be at the chiropractor every other day.
It’s not just art. It’s really more about writing and the marketing. Female characters in superhero comics are frequently reduced to one note. They are abused. They are sex objects. They’re victims. They’re ice queens. Those are all valid aspects of a character … when they’re PART of a larger, more complex characters.
We’ve moved past the days of comics targeted at boys with raging libidos. If the stated goal is to bring in new readers, sexing it up and dumbing it down won’t get the job done.
Comics are capable of so much more than that. Unlike any other medium, they can deal with the real and the natural while existing in a world accentuated by the unreal and supernatural. They can engage readers of all ages and interests. But, not if they’re clearly aimed at a single demographic.
I’m not calling for puritanical comics. Sexuality is a part of life. You can’t avoid it. You can’t deny it. Nor should you. But, it is ONE aspect of life and personality. It’s possible for comics to incorporate sex and gender in more subtle, mature and complex ways that are respectful of women, while engaging enough for older readers.
In the end, I want comics that don’t limit female characters to sex objects or victims. I want this for my girls (and myself) now and when they’re more mature readers capable of understanding more adult topics. But, at any age, I don’t want them to feel they’re defined by sex or their gender to the exclusion of all else.
As evidence of how superheroines can be dead sexy and proportionate at the same time, I submit David Lopez. And, there’s no better examples than his work on Catwoman, Mystic and Hawkeye and Mockingbird. His women are beautiful, imposing and a wonderful blend of the fantastic and the realistic. Kudos, “Daviz”! You’re a hero of mine. Hands down.
This is a special one. About six months ago, we learned about the amazing Emma T. Capps from our buddy Tara Abbamondi. Emma is an award-winning artist and storyteller. She has distinctive style, a signature character, a line of greeting cards, robust Webcomic and the respect of the industry. Oh, she also just happens to be a teenager. Amazing and inspirational. (P.S. She also manages to be a first-class Doctor Who fan, too.) You can see a cool time-lapse of Emma at work here: http://www.thechapelchronicles.com/about.php
Emma graciously agreed to sketch her character, Chapel Smith, and Chapel’s pet hedgehog with Grace and me. It was an honor.
We expect to see great things from Ms. Capps for many years to come and hope to meet her in person some day!
I am sorry to say that this sketch has been on the shelf for a while. Grace and I worked on it earlier in the year … and its some of her best work … but, for some reason, it didn’t make it onto the blog.
This is our take on characters from two incredible webcomics:
These are really fun, creative comics and I encourage you to check them out today!
Last week, my wife and I took the girls on their first pilgrimage to Disney World. Truth be told, I’ve always thought of myself as a Disney Hater. But, walking around the Magic Kingdom, it’s hard not to realize a) how much you loved Disney films and characters as a kid b) how creative and amazing Disney creators are.
The highlight of the trip for me was taking three 20-minute drawing classes at Hollywood Studios Disney Animation Academy. We drew Piglet, Rapunzel and Mickey. While Grace liked it … Cate LOVED it. Loved. If she’d had her way, we would have drawn all day. In a rare development, Mrs. 5 Minute Marvels drew, too.
Our instructor was a talented illustrator and nice guy, Brian James Fichtner. Check out his art blog here! And, he has a tremendous second blog, Amazing Cosmic Powers, with his insights on famous cartoonists and illustrators. It’s fantastic.
Tonight’s post combines two favorites … Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew and Calamity Jon Morris – the brilliant illustrator behind Cornered and DC Fifty Too (which, if you haven’t read … shame on ya’).
Jon’s been a friendly collaborator over the course of 5 Minute Marvels. When we suggested Captain Carrot … he already had one in the can he was planning to put on his own blog. How’s that for kismet? Hey, DC Comics, here’s a fantastic property to bring back! I had so much fun drawing Cap, I drew an extra picture of his magical partner, Alley-Kat-Abra.
Grace and I got a very nice, little surprise over the weekend — these fantastic drawings of Scott Pilgrim and Ramona Flowers all the way from the UK by illustrator/designer Jason Garrattley and his nine-year-old daughter, Eden. Great stuff, guys!
Jason runs some incredible blogs you should check out … well … right now:
– KirbyVision: the fan art blog affiliated with the Jack Kirby museum
– BetweenClarkAndHilldale: Jason’s blog with his art and design work
– AncientAndForever: an AMAZING Dr. Who fan art blog
Twitter is an amazing place to find inspiration. I know its reputation is one of endless idle chatter, but I’ve found it to be a remarkable place to come into contact with people of like passions. Adriana Blake is just such an example. Click here to view her blog at littleteacup.com
Adriana is a Venezuelan-American illustrator living in Canada. She’s a fellow contributor to Womanthology and the creator of the webcomic Fall on Me.
She graciously (and excitedly) agreed to sketch with us and made a fantastic selection in the Looney Toon, Pepe Le Pew.