Monday, February 24, 2014

Anatomy of a Logo: Hammer of God

In the second week of November 1992, Dark Horse editor, Anina Bennett, called and offered two logos to me: Hammer of God and Mezz. My first job for them. (They were followed by Will to Power and Barb Wire.) I said I was interested and waited for her package.

Anina’s package included photocopies of a few finished pages, some penciled pages and the covers published by First. Her cover letter, dated November 16, 1992, described the characters and shared her thoughts on the logo.

First, 1991

I made a number of sketches in a sketchbook and enlarged them on a photocopier. I chose to emphasize GOD by making it larger than the other words. The raised fist was treated as ornaments in some designs. It was an easy decision to use the raised fist emblem in place of the O in GOD. Guidelines were drawn over the sketches.

The G and D designed to be mirror images of each other.

Tracing paper was placed over the photocopies
to make the first refinements.

Second refinements were made and faxed on November 30.

Anina selected the third design. I drew guidelines
on the photocopy then placed tracing paper over it.

Some of the letters were modified and the spacing adjusted.
The raised fist was moved inside the O.

The revised logo was photocopied and faxed to Anina.

Anina approved the design. I enlarged it about one-and-a-half times and drew guidelines for the arc, the weight of the outline, the shape of the letters, shadows, and raised fist, which was tilted slightly. The photocopy was positioned on a light box, then a sheet of LetraMax was placed over it. The inking was done with Rapidograph pens and an assortment of ellipse templates, an adjustable triangle and a flexible French curve.

A same-size photostat was made of the original art for my files.

The comic books were published in 1994. 
Pentathlon designed by Dark Horse.

Butch and the fists designed by Dark Horse.

(Next post on Monday: Mezz Galactic Tour 2493)

Monday, February 17, 2014

Monday, February 10, 2014

Comics: Reading Steranko

2013 New York Comic Con

Jim Steranko was born in Reading, Pennsylvania, on November 5, 1938. His name appeared, many times, in the local newspaper, Reading Eagle.

December 21, 1947
“Glenside Cubs Attend Party”

Christmas party...A western movie was shown by James Steranko...

January 21, 1954
“Tenth Graders Present Talent Show at Northwest School”
…James Steranko and Jeanette Trader, a magic act…

January 29, 1954
“Hungry Club Sees Amateur Magicians”
...James Steranko, a pupil at Northwest Junior High School...staged an exhibition...J.P. Costello, president, took Steranko into cub membership...

February 6, 1954
“Escape Artist Shows Police His Talent”
...The Northwest Junior High School tenth grader, an amateur magician who has been practicing the art for only six months, awed city police with his escape demonstrations yesterday...

February 7, 1954
“Magicians Plan Series of Shows”
...J.R. Snell...was assisted by James Steranko, 15-year-old Northwest Junior High School pupil who recently mystified city police with his handcuff escapes feats...

February 11, 1954
“Junior Magicians Plan Organization Here”
James Steranko...Teen Magic Club...
“First Annual Gymboree Set at Central YMCA Friday Night”
...James Steranko, 15, son of Mr. and Mrs. John Steranko, 118 Luzerne St., billed as the “jail-breaker and handcuff king,” also will be featured.

April 23, 1954
“Gymboree Staged at Central YMCA”
...James Steranko, 15-year-old magician, escaped from a straight jacket while hanging from his feet. He also freed himself from approximately 35 feet of rope binding in less than two minutes.

July 20, 1954

“Special Events in Wilkes-Barre Series”
…stuntman Jimmy Steranko will permit himself to be buried alive in sand for 20 minutes...

November 30, 1954
“Hi-Y Inducts 37 Members at Meeting”
The Hi-Y Club of Reading High School last night inducted 37 new members during a special session in the school’s music room....James Steranko...

October 2, 1955
“The Walsh Line”
Columnist John F. Walsh profiled Steranko

February 3, 1956
“Trio Held for Thefts”
Front page article concludes on page 22; Steranko, not mentioned by name, was referred to as “an amateur magician and escape artist”; see Gettysburg Times article, “Admit Stealing 25 Cars in State”

April 22, 1959
“New Magician Group Names Council”
The Contemporary Magicians’ Club elected an executive council of three officers...James Steranko was elected secretary...

January 8, 1961
“Local Book Lists Card Tricks”
Steranko on Cards

May 1, 1965
“Advertising Agency Buys Building in Shillington”
Milford Associates, local advertising agency...James Steranko is associated as art director and production chief. Steranko gained recognition as illustrator and author previous to his two-year affiliation with Milford Associates.

February 5, 1967
“Reading Artist Leads a Busy Life Dealing With Superheroes in His Spare Time”
(page-and-a-third profile with photograph)

September 16, 1970
“The Passing Parade”
Steranko’s History of Comics mentioned

June 10, 1973

“James Steranko’s Artistic Success Predicted by Walsh”

May 24, 1980
“Sunday Preview”
Steranko’s Prevue magazine

May 25, 1980
“Steranko’s New Challenge”
Steranko profile and a look at Prevue magazine

May 24, 1981
“‘Outland’ Publicity Campaign Includes Steranko Adaptation”

Steranko adaptation of Outland

June 14, 1981
“Steranko Art Helped Sell ‘Raiders’”
Steranko art for Raiders of the Lost Ark

August 20, 1981
Q. Some information please about the Berks County artist that helped make “Raiders of the Lost Ark” such a hot film?

February 21, 1982
Prevue magazine coverage of Videodrome.

November 15, 1992
“Reading artist has a stake in ‘Dracula’”
Steranko art for Francis Ford Coppola’s Bram Stoker’s Dracula

February 5, 2006
“Art council announces Berks Movie Madness festival”
...Among those scheduled to participate are...production designer/writer/producer Jim Steranko...

September 12, 2006
“Berks film festival set for mid-October”
...The legendary Jim Steranko will also be appearing on Oct. 9. Steranko is best known for his work in comic books during the 1960s, when he illustrated and wrote for “X-Men,” “Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD” and “Captain America”...

Related post: Nick Fury’s Shadow

(Next post on Monday: Mt. Desert Is. Ice Cream)

Monday, February 3, 2014

Typography: Chinese Oreo Cookies, Part 2

Birthday Cake Flavor with 100th Anniversary Tag

Chocolate Creme Filling

Coconut and Green Tea Flavors


July 2013 Receipt

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Street Scene: Sunset Park, Brooklyn, Year of the Horse Celebration

Year of the Horse celebration in Sunset Park Brooklyn, New York, began 11 o’clock in the morning at 60th Street and 8th Avenue. Two lions danced their way to the stage located at 50th Street, where the Brooklyn Chinese-American Association is located.

Looking west on 8th Avenue as the lions approach

Looking east as the crowd follows the lions

Stage with senior women singing

Stage with children performing

U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer speaking

NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito presents proclamation

NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer speaking

Officials and guests on stage to watch the firecracker display

Firecrackers finish and balloons float away

Lion dancers mount the posts

Lion dancers dismount

Parade begins at 51st Street

Looking west, Verrazano-Narrows Bridge is in the background

Looking east as the crowd disperses