IN THIS ISSUE: El's Mirror, BiGS #4 preview, Character Bio of the Week, and more.
Thanks for hanging out with me! Let's talk about last week:
EL'S MIRROR: CLOUD OF WITNESSES- Here's a cool poster that I drew for a client project last year that works as a Black History Month gift.
Work in Progress- Here's some promotional artwork I'm working on for one of my recurring clients.
BiGS #4 is HERE!- I just received a couple comp copies of BiGS #4 from the publisher!
NEW BIO- Here's a bio for Doctor Helix from MANCHILD.
Cloud of Witnesses by Samax Amen
Last summer I quietly created the limited edition poster Cloud of Witnesses for the multimedia project El's Mirror from Hip Hop Grew Up.
Written by the son + father team of Ellison and Bavu Blakes, El's Mirror is a children's book about a boy whose magical mirror shows him great historical heroes who happen to look a lot like him. It's a great teachable metaphor for the power of passing on the accomplishments of our ancestors, culture, and forebears.
Bavu is one of my favorite rappers, so when he sent me a production copy of the book asked me to do this promotional poster in response to the book, I was so happy to be involved.
Cloud of Witnesses 14-inch square foldout poster; illustrated by Samax Amen, inspired by El's Mirror
El's Mirror 9.25-inch square hardback book + dust jacket cover (44 pages); words by Ellison & Bavu Blakes; Pictures by A.H. Taylor
Digital Bundle:El's Mirror Theme Song mp3 + Lyrics poster pdf + Exclusive Insight from illustrators of El's Mirror Book and Cloud of Witnesses Poster (A.H. Taylor and Samax Amen) + Exclusive Insight from writers of El's Mirror Theme Song (Chalie Boy, Jon Deas, Easy Lee, Queen Deelah, Reggie Coby)//
I'll talk more about the process and name all the historical figures in the poster for you later on, but don't wait on me! This is a limited edition jawn, so Click the button to see all the options and get yours while you can!
I make a lot of my money drawing Cartoon Portraits in comic book style. As more and more of my work is coming from business clients, things have gotten very interesting. One of my favorite small business clients has started their own sunglasses brand, Frescobar Eyewear.
We're still working some kinks out of this drawing, I'll color it and show you it to you again when it's done. If they make shirts or other merch for for sale, I'll let you know.
You know I LOVE making these Marvel Universe Handbook-style bios for my characters. Let's take a look at this bio for Doctor Helix, the mad scientist from MANCHILD.
I originally created MANCHILD in the early 2000s as a series of black and white hand-stapled 8 page minicomics that I sold at conventions and on my website.
After working as part of a team on an all-ages comic about child superheroes, I went crazy with MANCHILD creating an ultra-violent comic that included every idea that would never fly as part of a kids' comic. I love drawing kids being bad, so I did my best to go delightfully overboard with MANCHILD.
One of those ideas was a mad scientist posing as a fertility doctor that was not averse to child abuse.
I pledged that every cover would have Junior holding a gun or some other clue that it was not for kids, so that parents could not say that the cartoon style misled them.
MANCHILD has a fairly complex plot and a large cast of characters, but I kept it simple for the bio. I published three 8 page chapters of MANCHILD while I was working in a call center. Then the I improved and colored them and republished them in color as episodes of my magazine GhettoManga.
As my freelancing career has taken off (which is a good thing), I got sidetracked from making more comics (not so good). But I kept tinkering with the characters, their backstories, and their behind the scenes relationships.
I thought I would return to self-publishing last year, but 2020 had other plans.
My plan was to do some short comics AND to release some old stuff as digital e-books, including MANCHILD. All that stuff went on the back burner. But I'm still on it, so stay tuned.
One of the compromises I made was to start making these bios as a tease to what my fans can look forward to.
It's helped me stay motivated too!!
Got Photoshop? Get the PSD Template!
Wanna buy a copy of the blank template I made so you can make bios like this for your characters? Just click the button below to download the Photoshop Document. I also included a link to a blank google doc where you can type it out before entering it into your PSD (if that's how you roll).