15.12.14

Illumina's first appeareance

Today a group of dedicated fans, lead by Eric DeLima is celebrating Illumina day, an event dedicated to the character I created for the Masters of the Universe 2002 comic vol. 3, that unfortunately was part of a storyline we had to scrap due to the legal constraints we faced as the line was coming to an end.
Fans would like to see Illumina released in figure form at one point, and while Mattel doesn't currently own the rights to her, I like many others, hope that one day maybe a reconciliation could be reach and me and Mattel will find a way to work together to make a figure of her

In the meantime, I wanted to offer to all the fans that supported my creations for such a long time, a glimpse of something never revealed before.

When we began work on Vol. 3 of the comic, I was asked to come up with the story plot. So I wrote a very rough draft for the first few issues, loosely describing the action and what topic we would have covered.
This draft was later reworked, but the following is an extract from my original document, where Illumina makes her very first appearance!

"We see SK and EL in the library of Zalesia  where they have spent hours looking in the books an scripts but none of the them  contains more information that vague legends and myths (we could start to throw in more about Eternia’s past here) but nothing about Grayskull. It seems that everything has been erased on purpose!
SK is furious because he thinks he has been tricked by the FLO.
On the floor of the Library is painted a map of Eternia, but most of it can’t be read.
EL says that being angry made him blind. She solves the enigma her father had told them and chants a difficult spell and slowly a few skull symbols starts to appear on the map!
(The biggest of them is obviously on where Grayskull is)
They’re just starting to analyze the map when the room starts to shake violently  and begin to collapse.
EL implore SK to leave the library, but SK doesn’t want to go and he takes EL staff form her hands.
While the ceiling starts to crumble over them He chants a last spell using both staffs!
The room collapse.
We move outside and we looks at the smoldering ruins. After a few moments we see EL and Skeletor emerge from the ruins, a bit beaten up but still unharmed.
We pull back and we see a blue skinned, white dressed and white haired woman observing the scene from the distance. She’s not very young probably a bit younger than Duncan  and she wear her Warriors Ring on her left hand but I’m not sure how much we want to drive readers attention on this yet.
 On her side there is a big white panther with a silver saddle. She’s talking to the feline. From the dialogue we understand the she caused the ruin to collapse but he didn’t succeed in stopping SK… but she doesn’t dare to confront SK and EL directly and it’s time for the Guardians of Grayskull to move!"

There was really not much else in the plot about her so far. I did the original sketch of her at the same time, to present it to MVCreations.
This is where I introduced, for the very first time, the idea of this mysterious white dressed woman.
She was already in my thoughts since Homecoming. She was nothing more than a plot device back then. At that time, I wanted to merge the original Don Glut minicomic with the Filmation cartoon, so I had He-Man living in a tribe, but secretly being Prince Adam, hidden far from Eternos when he was an infant, to escape from the Horde invasion.
I needed someone that took the kid out of the royal palace and traveled with him to these remote regions of Eternia, where she left him to the care of this tribe. And for some reason, I wanted this person to be a woman. She was not a Gar back then of course, but she was already dressed in white and with white hair.

As an added bonus, here is the pencil version of the beautiful cover Enza Fontana drew with Illumina



And since it never appeared on this blog, the MOTUC design I did of her, adapting the 2002 style to the MOTUC style and parts library



1.12.14

Transformers 4 - Movie concept exploration 1



Just a couple of months ago I received approval on showing at least one piece of the work I did for Transformers Age of Extinction movie.
This is one of the craziest piece I did for the fourth Transformers movie and it was a lot of fun to work on.I did it under the direction of the mighty Aaron Archer who gave me a ton of details to fit into one single image.
I started with a couple of simple composition/mood studies, and then went into the full rendering.


We went throw a lot lot of revisions, including adding Drift, the sparkles and later on we also decided to change the color of the sky.


I loved adding all the dust and atmospheric elements, creating chaos during the battle.
There is so much going on that something can get lost, like Bumblebee fighting a bunch of Decepticons behind Grimlock.


There will be more? The title of the post suggests yes, as I did several other pieces, so, hopefully I'll get permissions to show some others in the following years.





10.11.14

My dream MOTUC Signature Series collected

Originally appeared on Facebook as daily posts, I decided to collect this series of MOTU concepts on my blog as well, so you can see them all in one place at once.

With all the talks about a possible rebrand of the Classics line of figures for 2016, I wanted to explore what I would personally like to see.

I then created a series of B-Sheets portraying a line-up of figures, based on MOTUC molds, but reworked to offer new versions of the main characters, offering a jump-in point for new collectors. Released as a full year line, they would probably work mixed with other unreleased characters, appealing to the existing MOTUC collectors too.

Going by the name of the line "Signature Series", a name mentioned by the former MOTU brand manager echoing the latest DC Signature Series, I envisioned a line of figures that pay a big homage to the original creators of the line. Most of the figures I sketched are redesigned to reflect as much as possible the original B-Sheets that Mark Taylor created in 1981.
Which mean, they are not really my own designs, but they are what originally generated MOTU, as Mark was the creator of all the main characters.

Mind you, you may not recognize some of this stuff, or think some of the color scheme are pretty arbitrary. They are not. Everything is based on the original Mark's colored drawings I had the privilege to see a couple of years ago and that hopefully will be published in one of the future The Power and The Honor Foundation publications.

But why not go completely wild and just design figures that look exactly like the b-sheets, with different bodies etc.? Because I tried to design a complete and affordable line up of figures that could be released over the course of an entire year and remain affordable especially since this would be what rebranding means: bringing back main characters for people that missed out, but using most of the existing molds and changing line name and packaging

That also means, some figures have more new tooling, and cost more, some would have less, and cost less but help fitting the higher-tooling ones in the budget.
It’s how MOTUC worked since day one.

A few extra notes: rebranding the line means mostly the following things:
-Refreshing the “appearances" of the line, by changing mainly the line name and the packaging.
-Reusing as much as it’s possible existing tooling
-Bringing back the main characters.
You may not want that because you already have them, but that is not how the marketing works for those things. A “rebranded” line will supposedly try to catch up with collectors that didn’t buy this line in the first place, or that got into it too late and can’t find or afford the first releases anymore, all this while appealing to a portion of the existing customer that will buy again the main characters.

Now, mine is just an idea of many possible. I approach it with a very nostalgic and historical eye. I don’t think this is the best possible, it’s just what I’d love most.
Also, this idea was originally what I would have loved for the 30th anniversary line.















15.8.14

Transformers Generations Rattrap

Yet another of my Transformers Generations figure designs!
Transformers Generations Rattrap! This was done shortly after Rhinox, Waspinator and Cosmos, and I got to do only the Robot mode. But it's one of my favorite sketches and I love how the toy turned out!




7.7.14

The Covenant of Primus: Megatron

When The Covenant of Primus was released, the Megatron design I had done for the  Transformers Binder of Revelations was finally revealed.
This piece of concept art was originally done in 2009, as part of the new TF brand bible.
Once more I was working under Eric Siebenaler's directions along with Aaron Archer's (whow, it was so much time ago that my memories are starting to fade away!).
Under those directions, I created it blending elements from a previous sketch I had done and another artist's ideas (the blacked out face and the axes on the back).

The concept was first only used fort the bible, but it was then sent out as reference for other media. He was the model we used for The Ultimate Pop-Up Universe and the one the other artists used for the Covenant of Primus illustrations, where it also appeared in tis full glory.
I didn't get to do the Alt Mode, which was done by Ken Christiansen and can be seen here.

As a bonus, here is also the "pencil" sketch. From that one I went straight to color devising the technique that I would have later used on the Pop-Ups. But at that time, this took me 4 days!



17.6.14

Generations Metroplex

Wow, it was almost an year ago... When Transformers Generation Metroplex went on sale and also made an appearance as an exclusive at San Diego Comic Con.

As some of you may know, I did some work on that giant sucker. But I didn't do the whole design. What I did was working with Chris Hicks on a concept to pitch the idea and work out the general shapes and features. After that, he was properly designed and engineered, but as you may notice, some spots remained faithful to what I had draw, like the chest area. As you can see also, those panels on the shoulders were supposed to open up. Hasbro kept them, but they are now part of the shoulder sculpture and don't move.
Overall, I believed I had to go for  TF Prime aesthetic, I wasn't aware this was for Generations.
Oh, and yes, it's a pretty rough sketch. But many of these things starts like that!






27.4.14

The Covenant of Primus: Ratchet finds a Quintesson chip in Coldwelder’s head

I didn't have time to create new art recently, but it has been a long time since my last post. And while I'm thinking about writing some new article about MOTU, I thought it would be cool to fill some spots with art I created previously.
This is the first illustration I created for the Transformers: The Covenant of Primus book.
Below, you can also see the pencils.




12.2.14

Three Days of He-Man: Colors

After Pencils and Inks And here is the final colored He-Man illustration is complete!
This was much more of a moody piece than Teela, I hope I got it right.
I'm also posting a detail, as even if pretty big, some details gets lost at web size.

I will probably do more of those, as I said when I posted Teela, I'm considering doing one for each of the statues done by Pop Culture Shock (BTW, the He-Man statue is still available here!)
Also, most likely I will have this available as a print at conventions this summer, I'll keep you updated.




11.2.14

Three Days of He-Man: Inks

Following pencils from yesterday, here are the inks!


10.2.14

Three Days of He-Man: Pencils

After finishing my Teela piece a couple of weeks ago, I was still so pumped about doing some new MOTU art (and extremely flattered by the overwhelming good response), that I wanted to do more right away!
I'm loving these Pop Culture Shock statue so much that I decided to take on the man himself, He-Man! (hem...)
Inspired by the great statue they are producing, this was a real challenge. Not super difficult per se, but I had to make justice to the most iconic image of He-Man, the transformation from the cartoon. I hope I succeeded, or at least got close enough.
Like for Teela, I'll post the three stages in 3 days: today the pencils, tomorrow the inks and the colors on Wednesday.




27.1.14

Three Days of Teela: Colors

After Pencils and Inks And here is the final colored Teela llustration is complete!
Sorry if it took three days to post all this, but it was fun. I had completed the entire piece in 2 days, and it was ready on Friday. Still, even if I said an artist needs to know when to stop, thanks to my friends Alessandra and Emanuela, I went back and fixed the nose and adjusted the background colors a bit.
I'm sure you're wondering, will I do more of those? Maybe, I'm considering doing one for each of the statues done by Pop Culture Shock.
Also, most likely I will have this available as a print at conventions this summer, I'll keep you updated.


Coincidentally, Pop Culture Shock released pics of the final painted statue that inspired this illustration yesterday, and it looks amazing.
If you love it as much as me, you can Pre-order her beginning on Monday February 10th at 3PM Pacific Standard Time from the Pop Culture Shock website.







26.1.14

Three Days of Teela: Inks

Following pencils from yesterday, here are the inks!
I haven't been inking for a while, and I get tired really fast when inking, because I want everything perfectly clean and sleek. But when the result is what I want, it's very satisfactory.
I took a lot of inspiration from Adam Hughes, but also from the work of my good friend Emanuela Lupacchino.
Stay tuned for the finished colored piece tomorrow!

25.1.14

Three Days of Teela: Pencils

Inspired by the upcoming Pop Culture Shock Teela statue, and by Adam Hughes' Cover Run book I finally decided to buy, I started and finished, pencils to color, a Teela image.
I wanted to go back to the old comic book style inked image, which I haven't done forever.
I'll post the three stages in 3 days: today the pencils, tomorrow the inks and the colors on Monday.
It was fun, and reminded me of my love for MOTU (and for Teela, on which I had a crush when I was a little kid...)


24.1.14

Transformers Generations Cosmos

Time from another of my Transformers Generations figure designs!
Transformers Generations Legends Class Cosmos and Payload! These were done at the same time of Rhinox and Waspinator, but as the last ones. There was very little time to complete them so I had to rush just rough pencil sketch. Overall, they are the ones that turned out to be more different in the final product, especially Payload which Alt Mode was changed. I guess it was also due to the technical needs of the figures.
But lots of the details remained the same!
Next time, Rattrap!



9.1.14

Atlantic Galaxy's Dynatlon


You know what? To the hell with all the crap!
Yeah, I spend my time much better than dealing with that mess all the time

Do you remember Skyman?
Here is another piece I did based on the Atlantic Galaxy series, Dynatlon!



And here is the original figure he is based on:

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