“The Simon & Kirby Superheroes” is announced!

Titan Books has announced that in summer of 2010 it will publish 480 pages of Simon & Kirby superhero comics in a single volume. The massive volume will have a footprint of 11″ by 7-1/2″, which is smaller than “The Best of Simon & Kirby”, but otherwise will continue with the same production values.

Two notable inclusions are:

  1. An almost complete unpublished Stuntman story, “Stuntman Crowns a Jungle Lord.”
  2. Harry Mendryk’s restoration of 1953’s Captain 3-D to their original line art for a first time color publication

Congratulations and best wishes to Joe Simon, The Kirby Estate, Nick Landau, Steve Saffel and Harry Mendryk.

(Read the full release on Harry’s Simon & Kirby blog.)

Welcome to Jason Garrattley’s Kirby-Vision!

Previously known as The Kirby Project, KIRBY-VISION showcases creative work inspired by the art and concepts of Jack Kirby.

I became aware of Jason Garrattley’s The Kirby Project a few months ago during Michael Netzer’s Facebook Comic-Con. Wishing I could find the time to do something on the Museum’s site much like what Jason was doing, I invited him to run it on kirbymuseum.org. Thanks so much, Jason, for helping the Museum.

Now if only I could get this Drupal thing to pull in feeds from Jason’s, Bob’s and Harry’s blogs to the Museum’s home page in a way that I like….

Kirby Museum at Comic-Con International: San Diego!

I’ll be at the TwoMorrows booth (#1301) exchanging stickers for small donations, and will also have some of the membership-premium posters. Come by and talk Kirby!

Don’t forget Mark Evanier’s Kirby Tribute panel from 10:00-11:00 am on Sunday in Room 4.

Long-delayed MoCCA “thanks”

Just wanted to add my thanks to Lisa Rigoux-Hoppe, Harry Mendryk and Steve Saffel for their help manning the Museum’s table.

Special additional thanks to Harry for donating two copies of “The Best of Simon & Kirby”, signed by Joe Simon, Harry and Steve, that we raffled off at the end of each day.

Thanks to Greg Theakston for stopping by on Sunday with new additions to the Museum’s “bookstore”. Especially nice were the almost 20 copies of the second volume of Ferran Delgado’s/Glenat’s Spanish Sky Masters book. Greg spent some time manning the table as well.

Thanks to Harry Mendryk, Steve Saffel, Mike Cecchini, Allan Haverholm, Charles David Viera, Ken Wong, Jeffery Lazell, Jeremy Povolny, Jeffrey Lazell, Arlen Schumer, Gabriel Perez, Franklin Stockton, Nicholas Cacciola, and Charles Hatfield, who either newly joined the museum or renewed their membership at the show. This was the first time the Museum was in membership mode; I brought membership premiums (posters, the Street Code mini, and even some of TwoMorrows’ Deities Portfolio) and thanks to Paypal, was able to take credit cards.

Thanks to Lois Dilivio and zipcar for the help with the transportation between Hoboken and the Armory.

Meet Kirby Kinetics blogger Norris Burroughs

Norris sent me this biography:

Norris Burroughs was born in New York City. He began attempting to draw comics at age four, when he realized how much he enjoyed putting pictures in sequence in order to tell a story. Burroughs discovered Kirby when reading “Taboo, the Thing from the Murky Swamp” in Strange Tales #75. He then became fascinated with the continuity of Kirby’s fight scenes in Rawhide Kid. Picking up the first issue of the Hulk and subsequently the character’s appearance in Fantastic Four #12 clinched it. He was evermore a Kirby fanatic.

Burroughs is the illustrator of several book covers, including The Phillip K. Dick anthology. Most recently, he has written and drawn Voodoo Macbeth, published by Engine Comics.

He was recently profiled by the Marin Independent Journal .

Jack Kirby’s Street Code at MoCCA

As I said in my previous entry regarding the MoCCA Festival last weekend, it’s great to see artists at their tables with their comics, mini-comics, postcards and stickers. Not only did I fire up some Jack Kirby stickers to offer at the table, but I got the OK from Lisa Kirby to print a thirty mini-comic edition of her dad’s only solo-produced autobiographical story, “Street Code.”

2009 - Street Code minicomic cover
2009 – Street Code minicomic cover

In 1983, Jack Kirby was commissioned to produce an autobiographical story by Richard Kyle, an instrumental figure in comics in the United States. Richard published “Graphic Story World”, which is called a “semi-pro fanzine” in various places on the web. He and a partner also operated Wonderworld Books in Long Beach, California. (At some point Graphic Story World’s name was changed to Wonderworld.)

The point of the commission was for it not only to be an autobiographical tale, but it would also be reproduced directly from Kirby’s pencil art — not inked as it had always been. But, Kirby’s script was professionally lettered in ink on overlays.

  • In 1990, Richard published Street Code in the second issue of Argosy, with lettering by Bill Spicer.
  • In 2000, Street Code was presented in Jon B. Cooke’s and John Morrow’s book, Streetwise, with lettering by Ken Bruzenak.
  • In 2008, Mark Evanier included Street Code in his “Kirby, King of Comics” book, with Spicer’s Argosy lettering.

Within the last year or so, Kirby scholar Greg Theakston has gifted many of his Kirby papers to the Kirby Museum. Much of it still needs to be cataloged, but while browsing through a looseleaf notebook filled with photocopies of Kirby art, I discovered Street Code. What caught my attention was that these photocopies included Kirby’s own pencilled-in lettering.

As Street Code is a favorite of many, myself included, I thought this would be a great choice for a mini-comic to offer at the MoCCA festival. I’m sure only a handful of people have seen Kirby’s hand lettering. It’s rough, but authentic.

It’s a ten page story, so it easily fit into a twelve page booklet — leaving me to only have to produce a front and back cover. Again, James Romberger was a big help.

2009 - Street Code minicomic back cover
2009 – Street Code minicomic back cover

Again with the fund raising! The Museum offered Street Code as a premium for the $40 annual membership, just like the first level posters. We also offered it as a $10 add-on to memberships. Maybe I’ll get it hooked up into our Paypal membership form.

  • In 2009, the Kirby Museum published Street Code (all pencil version) in a thirty mini-comic edition, with Kirby’s own lettering.

    2009 - Street Code minicomic pages 9 and 10
    2009 – Street Code minicomic pages 9 and 10

Stickers and Mother Box at MoCCA

The great thing about the MoCCA Festival is seeing comicbook artists at their tables with their comics, mini-comics, postcards and stickers. The publishers’ tables offer wonderful things, but the MoCCA Festival is really about the creators.

When I learned that the Kirby Museum would have a table at the Festival (I registered late and was wait-listed), I knew I needed Jack Kirby stickers. But what kind of stickers? After some consultation with Museum member James Romberger, I picked two images. The first is Kirby’s late 1960s/early 1970s “logo signature” as was used on the Marvelmania posters he produced around that time.

Feeling very much in the MoCCA Festival’s D.I.Y. head, I ordered some 2″ white weatherproof vinyl labels and some 1 1/2″ orange fluorescent labels, and got to inkjet printing on my HP Photosmart 8750. I just had to make some fluorescent stickers, as I love the Third Eye posters from the early 1970s. (Really should have an exhibit of those posters here.)

2009 - round stickers

The second image was, well, since the Festival was in New York City, what better choice than the dramatic “NY” figure from the series of football-styled images that John Morrow included on the back of the recent Kirby Collector? I cut and pasted the KIRBY lettering from the Marvel poster that the Museum offers as a premium, and then printed out in two sizes on clear mailing labels.

2009 - NY Kirby labels
2009 – NY Kirby labels

Right. Now how to make the labels a fund raising tool? The costs entailed attending the Festival add up! Got it. I figured it’d be fun to have a Mother Box (a device having various configurations in Kirby’s “Fourth World” stories) with a piggy-bank-like slot on the top and make a sign with “suggested donations” listed. (I had to include “Kirby is Here!” and “Don’t ask, just donate!” on the sign. ;^) )

Consulting with my crafty wife Lisa, we made the proportions of this Mother Box similar to Vykin’s from the Forever People. I didn’t want it to just be a flat red with a yellow disk on one side like Vykin’s, though. So, I dove into the Museum’s Original Art Digital Archive, and printed out some amazing Kirby art I’d scanned last July at the San Diego convention. Lisa cut, wrapped and taped it around the box.Best moment was when Scott Eder stopped by the table, recognized the art and complimented me on the color accuracy of the printing.

2009 - Mother Box
2009 – Mother Box

As far as I’m concerned the labels were great little fund raisers. Every so often, we at the table would say, “Ping! Ping! Ping!” when someone dropped a bill (or bills!) into the Mother Box’s slot. (Someone from Vermont even dropped a “Where’s George” single).

Next: the Kirby Museum’s MoCCA Festival mini-comic.

Interview at MoCCA Festival in NYC

I’ll provide some more details about the MoCCA Festival this past weekend, but in the meantime, check out my interview with new Museum member (and “The Best of Simon & Kirby” raffle winner) Gabriel Perez from Strangers With Comics. – Thanks, Gabe!

The Best of Simon & Kirby

Have you seen the wonderful “The Best of Simon & Kirby” from Titan Books? Great restorations by Simon & Kirby blogger Harry Mendryk. Here’s to high hopes for a long and successful series of Simon & Kirby books from Titan. Thanks for a great effort to Joe Simon, Lisa Kirby, Steve Saffel and Harry.

Poster available – % of sales to Kirby Museum

From the “If You Could” project of London design studio HudsonBec:

Kam Tang – “Power Cosmic”

2008 - Kam Tang's Power Cosmic print
2008 – Kam Tang’s Power Cosmic print

London-based illustrator Kam is one of the most successfully diverse graphic artists working today. A constant re-invention of his aesthetic means his output is consistently exciting, cementing himself as a leading figure in the industry for many years to come. A list of collaborations and clients as long as your arm include The Chemical Brothers, Gnarls Barkley, Burberry, Adidas, the London Design Museum and Royal Mail.

The November print expires in 22 days from posting of this message

Kam is generously donating a percentage of his sales to the Jack Kirby Museum & Research Center.