As the ten or twelve of you who read this know, I’m working on Brooklyn Blood with Paul Levitz for Dark Horse Presents. I’m just about done with the last chapters (Chapter 8 in stores now!) and am drawing a few other possible projects. Thus, the piece of art below. Where and when this appears in print is as of yet not set in any type of schedule. This is how I draw roughs, on a Cintiq (in photoshop) . It’s kind of like drawing roughs with a marker. Ultimately I will print this out in non-photo blue, ink it in the real world and then scan it back into the computer to be colored. Every time I say or type that, I realize it’s a bit insane. Yes, I doodled some color on there. Total waste of time at this stage.
Brooklyn Blood by Paul Levitz and myself moves forward another eight pages in Dark Horse Presents! On line, and below, is a preview of next month’s splash page. Have to say, I really enjoyed drawing the subway. I love-hate the subway like many in NYC, but mostly I love it. The dancing that is not allowed is always entertaining and only costs me some pocket change. The food that is not allowed…well that always smells bad for some reason and we all know the ads are boring since Dr. Zizmor retired. I have at least two friends who were ticketed for peeing in the subway and one, along with MANY others, who got away with it. Once, an older woman lit up a big joint on the 1 train and smoked it like she owned the car. One night I witnessed a birthday celebrant vomit on a subway seat, and floor, and another seat. Watched a woman create a blowtorch out of her hair spray can and a lighter in the service of chasing away some kids who had been harassing her. Passed the Fonze, who was coming up out of the subway as I was going down. Saw the police and EMT workers bring a body up from the subway only to have the white sheet fall off as I walked by. That last one will haunt me forever, and that’s kind of what I ended up drawing in this latest chapter.
The time for words is over, though! You can look at the preview of the art now. The one where I get to draw the subway.
Our plane from JFK to Reykjavik was uneventful except for the young man who was sitting in front of us. I spotted him drinking beer when we first boarded, and I can only assume he also consumed something more “powerful” as his behavior eventually degraded to the point where the flight attendants confined him to one of the bathrooms for an hour or so.
I didn’t sleep on the red eye flight, and after an hour driving through Iceland’s trade mark fog and rain in our rental car, we spotted an Ikea. Jean remembered reading that Ikea is a popular breakfast place in Iceland and we were in desperate need of coffee. Sure enough, even though we were the first people there, the place soon filled up with hungry people. It was cafeteria style and the woman who made my waffle was VERY eager to cover it with chocolate. I had to tell her “No” several times. She seemed saddened by this.
The rain eventually cleared up on the drive to our Bed & Breakfast. We saw many lamb and beautiful horses along the road and in the mountains. In fact, the restaurant we ate at that night had beautiful things on the menu.
Breakfast at our Bed & Breakfast included waffles, but our host didn’t try to push any chocolate toppings. we met two couples from Canada who were riding motorcycles around Iceland. One of them was a chef and commented that he tried the beautiful horse at the restaurant. He felt it was over cooked .
We left our rented car behind and took a ferry to Heimaey Island, one of the Westman Islands. We’re not full fledged birders, but brought our binoculars on a 5 Kilometer trail along the sea cliffs of the island in an effort to see Puffins. We saw many birds and sea lions before finally spotting a Puffin that was flying out to sea and then back to it’s nest. Our walk to the end of the island had lasted about four hours and we forgot to bring snacks. Ruth, the woman who ran our B&B said that if we didn’t feel like walking back from the end of the island, people who drove out there would be glad to give us a ride back. Eventually, people in a SUV drove up to the plaque we just read, never got out of their car, and took off back to the other end of the Island. It was a hungry three hour walk back. I thought about waffles covered in Chocolate.
A volcanic eruption occurred on Heimaey in 1973 burying a good portion of the town and increasing the size of the Island. The next day we hiked up Eldfell, the now dormant volcano. While climbing we were hit with fog, rain, wind and at some moments, clear skies. As we approached the top of the rim of the crater, a rain cloud moved in causing the German tourists ahead of us disappeared in the mist. It also made for this cool photo.
I really don’t know if they were German, but they didn’t return a hello to me except for one person who mumbled something in German. I think. It makes for a good title to my post anyway.
Heat vents at the top of the volcano are still fairly hot and will warm you up and dry you off. Our host, Ruth baked bread up here in the heat vents until recently. She told us that it’s cooled off and is only hot enough for fondue now.
Everywhere we went in Iceland, signs warned us that we could be burned, fall to our death and or be crushed by falling rocks. It was great! Strokkur Geysir had a sign warning you that you should NOT put your hand in the water running down the rocks as it could scald you and the nearest hospital was 47 Kilometers away. Of course I saw a few people test the water with their hands.
Mainland Iceland was also amazing, if a bit more full of tourists than Heimaey Island. There are many hitchhikers and we picked up a woman from Boston who was not afraid to hitch rides in Iceland due to the low murder rate. According to her, Iceland had one murder last year.
As with most adventures, our trip ended with Vikings, and not chocolate covered Waffles as I had expected. Actually, it ended with a Viking ship. A museum dedicated to a Viking ship a sailor built and sailed to America in 2000. I sketched it.
No animation or sketching this week. Just a quick reminder that I have been remiss in reminding people that Paul Levitz and myself have a continuing story running in Dark Horse Presents. It’s called Brooklyn Blood and the latest issue (issue 21) is on sale…last week! Details are here! Pictured below is the cover by Aaron Lopresti and a peek at the latest installment of B.B.