Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Bret Herholz

1) The Detective, 2) The Hound, and 3) The Cast

Bret Herholz is an illustrator, scriptwriter and art instructor in Massachusetts. He's written and drawn a number of different books including "Diary of the Black Widow", his latest "Memento Mori" written by his wife Sydney, and my favourite "Sherlock Holmes: The Painful Predicament of Alice Faulkner" (adapted from William Gillette's play).  He's also been a contributing artist for the web series "Cracked: After Hours". 

I actually came across Bret's work on eBay a few years ago.  His Edward Gorey-esq style really caught my eye.  While I lost out on the first auction, I did manage to win this great rendition of the classic Sherlock along with a copy of his book.  We emailed back and forth a little and I commissioned him for the second and third pieces above.  "The Hound" is based on a Sydney Paget illustration and Bret did a simply amazing job.  The eerie-ness of the piece is wonderful and I love the red eyes on the hound.  For "The Cast" piece, I was interested in getting something with not just Holmes and Watson, but with a couple of the other characters like Prof. Moriarty and Irene Adler.  Bret ended up doing this family portrait style piece featuring many of the major characters from the stories.  I was stunned when I saw the final piece.  He went above and beyond on this one especially with some of the smaller details like needles on the end table, the picture on the wall, etc... 

On a side note, Bret does some amazing pieces with other literary characters like Alice (in Wonderland), Winnie the Pooh, etc...  But aside from his Sherlock pieces, his Doctor Who ones are my favourites.  I highly recommend looking him up.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Ralph Steadman

Sherlock Holmes

Ralph Steadman is a renowned British artist best known for his work with Hunter S. Thompson.  Providing illustrations for Thompson's "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas", "The Kentucky Derby Is Decadent and Depraved" and "The Curse of Lono" to name a few, he has also illustrated such classics as "Alice in Wonderland", "Treasure Island" and "Animal Farm" in addition to his own books.  His artwork can be found on everything from posters and album covers, to phone covers adn wine bottles.  He is truely an amazing artist.

I've been a huge fan of Mr. Steadman's work since first reading "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" in high school.  I just love the look and feel of his work and find it timeless.  I contacted him a few years ago and told him about my collection and he did this wonderful drawing for me of Sherlock Holmes.  At the time I believe this was the first time he had drawn Sherlock Holmes.    

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Jeff Lemire

Holmes & Watson
Jeff Lemire is a very talented artist and writer here in Toronto.  His "Essex County Trilogy" was nominated for both a Harvey and Eisner award.  In 2008 he won both a Doug Wright and a Joe Shuster award.  The DC comics imprint Vertigo published his "The Nobody" graphic novel and his ongoing series "Sweet Tooth".  He has continued to work with DC on a number of other titles including a series of Atom adventures in "Adventure Comics", "Superboy", "Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E.", "Animal Man",  and is now working on the "Justice League Dark" title.  He also has an upcoming story in Vertigo's "Ghosts" one-shot called "Ghost for Hire" with Geoff Johns. 
I contacted Jeff through his blog after I read the first volume of the Essex County Trilogy.  It is a great story and if you haven't read it I highly recommend it.  Growing up just outside of Toronto I thought the story was great and I love Jeff's artwork.  He hadn't done Sherlock before so he was excited to do the piece, and I was excited to see what he would do.  When I picked up the piece I was thrilled.  It is one of my favourite pieces and is one of the first pieces you see where I have them displayed. 

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Dean Motter

1) The Martian Invasion, and 2) Evolution of the Detective
Dean Motter started in the comic industry in the late 70's here in Canada.  He has written and drawn a variety of comic titles including Batman, Superman, Star Wars, Grendel and Hellblazer.  But my absolute favourites were "Terminal City", "Electropolis" and especially "Mister X" (in my mind a very under rated series).  In addition to his comic work, Mr. Motter also worked for CBS Records Canada, and later his own studio, as an album graphics designer in which he was nominated for a number of Juno's and won.
When I contacted Mr. Motter about a Holmes commission he had a number of different ideas.  One was the first piece above hitting on the "War of the World's" theme.  He mentioned this idea of Holmes investigating the attack, and it sounded too good to pass up on.  Being a HUGE Mister X fan I was really interested in something with Holmes and Mister X together.  He came back with a couple of ideas, but this one with the other private eyes from his comics - Philip Marlow, Mister X and Menlo Park - sounded very cool.  Both pieces are stunning and did not disappoint.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Sam Agro

1) The Band, 2) The Detective, and 3) The Fall
Sam Agro is a jack of all trades - writer, teacher, performer and most of all a GREAT artist.  He has done storyboard work for hundreds of animated shows including the Star Wars cartoons "Ewoks" and "Droids", "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" and one of my favourites "The Ripping Friends".  His comic book work includes DC's "Looney Tunes", the Cartoon Network's "Bloc Party" comics, and "Revolution of the Planet of the Apes". 
Sam did this great rendition of Holmes and the Speckled Band for me at a local convention back in 2004.  I would check in with Sam at the shows to see how things were going and a few years later he did this wonderful portrait of Holmes at 221b for me.  The time and detail he put into the piece is clearly shown.  And finally, about a year ago I had mentioned to Sam that I really didn't have anything with Moriarty, so he did this stunning scene from "The Final Problem".  It is the largest of the three and I'm sorry but the scan does not do it justice. 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Ty Templeton

Classic Sherlock

Ty Templeton is a triple threat in the comics industry as he is a talented artist, a gifted writer, and great  teacher of all things comics.  He has drawn and written for everything from Batman and Superman, to Spider-Man and the Avengers, to the Simpsons. 

This was one of my first Sherlock drawings and still one of my favourites.  Ty did this at a convention here in Toronto a number of years ago.  At the time he also told me about a Sherlock Holmes comic he'd been wanting to do for years.  I'm glad to say that he's finally had this come to fruition.  Check out "Holmes Inc." when you get a chance.  It's a great comic, put togather by Ty and some very talented artists and writers.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Jack Davis

Mad Mr. Holmes

Jack Davis started working in the comics industry in the early 50's.  He drew for many of the EC Comics titles like "Tales from the Crypt", "Frontline Combat" and "Two-Fisted Tales.  He was also one of the first artists to work on Harvey Kurtzman's "Mad" magazine.  He has won numerous awards over the years and was inducted into the Comic Book Hall Of Fame in 2003.

I was thrilled and honoured when Mr. Davis did this wonderful drawing of Sherlock Holmes for me back in 2007.  This is a great piece from one of "The Usual Gang of Idiots" from Mad magazine.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Ernie Chan

Sherlock on the Trail

Ernie Chan started in the comics industry in the early 1970's.  He began working on Marvel's "Conan the Barbarian" in 1973 and worked on and off on the title for almost 20 years.  He had long runs as an artist on DC's Batman titles and from 1975-77 he was DC's primary cover artist.  

I contacted Mr. Chan through his website and commissioned this Sherlock Holmes piece from him in 2008.  All I asked for was Sherlock Holmes and left the rest up to him.  This peice with all the detail he put into it (the background buildings, street lights, etc) is simply amazing. 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sheldon Moldoff

Have you ever heard of Batman?

One of the great Golden Age artists, Sheldon Moldoff was a prolific artist and cover artist for DC comics.  He drew the first cover featuring the Golden Age Green Lantern, worked on some of the earliest comics featuring the Golden Age Hawkman and Hawkgirl, and was one of Bob Kane's "ghost artists" working on Batman. 

A number of years ago, Sheldon was coming up to Toronto and I bought a couple of pieces from him and asked about a piece featuring Sherlock Holmes and Batman.  This is the piece he did for me.  He said it was the first time he had ever been asked to draw Sherlock Holmes.  A few years ago he redid the image for another collector with some minor changes.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Neal Adams

Sherlock Holmes

Neal Adams is another one of the great silver age artists.  During the 60's and 70's he revamped and revitilized both the "Batman" series and the "Green Lantern\Green Arrow" comics.  He was also very active in comic creator rights helping to form the Comics Creators Guild and lobbying to get Superman creators Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegal long overdue credit for the character.  

I contacted and arranged this great piece from him through his website.


Saturday, April 14, 2012

Dick Ayers

Holmes and Watson

Dick Ayers is another one of the great silver age artists who worked at Marvel Comics and it's predecessor Atlas Comics.  He is known for his work on the early issues of the "Fantastic Four" as well as a long run on "Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos".

I contacted Mr. Ayers through his website and he did this great rendition of Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson for me.  He had originally done this as a pencil drawing for another collector, but when I asked about a Sherlock piece he redrew the piece, added some background and coloured it.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Bill Keane

Sherlock Billy

Bill Keane is best known for his award winning comic strip "The Family Circus".  Debuting in 1960, the strip has become one of the most loved and widely syndicated cartoon panels in the world.

Many years ago I had written Mr. Keane and included one of his strips with a "Sherlock Holmes" theme to it.  He was nice enough to sign the strip and included this great sketch of Billy with his bubble pipe.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Dick Giordano

1) Sherlock Holmes, and 2) The Two Great Detectives

Dick Giordano was not only a great Silver Age artist, but also worked many years as an editor for both Charlton and DC Comics.  I loved his work on the Batman titles, with Neal Adams and on the DC 12-issue series "Crisis on the Infinite Earths".

The first piece I commissioned from Mr. Giordano through his website.  The second piece I purchased on eBay.  Upon emailing Mr. Giordano I found out this piece was originally done for another collector but was to be Batman chasing Dracula.


Tom Wilson

Sherlock Ziggy

Tom Wilson is best known as the creator of the comic strip "Ziggy".  Since the comic strip began in 1971, Ziggy has been featured on t-shirts, calendars, ornaments, greeting cards and in animated specials.

This was one of my first Sherlock drawings.  I had written Mr. Wilson to tell him how much I enjoyed the strip and mentioned my Sherlock Holmes collection and he drew this wonderful piece for me. 

Creig Flessel

Sherlock Holmes

Creig Flessel was one of the early golden age comic artists and is credited as being one of the co-creator's of the golden age Sandman.  He also drew the covers for many of the early comic books including many of the pre-Batman "Detective Comics", and the cover for the ashcan version of "Action Comics" #1.

I had written back and forth a couple of times with Mr. Flessel a number of years ago and he was kind enough to do this drawing of Holmes for my collection.  

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Gene Colan

Sherlock Holmes by gaslight

Gene Colan was one of the premier artists of the Silver Age of comics.  During his career he worked for both DC and Marvel and is probably best known for his work on "Daredevil", "The Tomb of Dracula" and the Batman titles.

Back in 2006, Mr. Colan posted on his site that he would be taking a few "retirement" commssions.  I was lucky to get on his list early.  A great piece by a legend in the comic industry.