Friday, November 27, 2009

Blast from the Past #255: TMNT group shot

(I have the feeling that I've posted this before, though a quick search of the blog seems to indicate otherwise.)

This is a group shot I penciled and inked (with a brush) back in 1986. It was done, as far as I can recall, just for the heck of it. -- PL

Monday, November 23, 2009

Blast from the Past #254: Original "Mousers" idea

I recently found this in my archive of old, pre-TMNT stuff. It's an idea I had come up with for a story -- one I apparently planned to do in comic book form -- featuring a robotic rodent hunter called a "Mouser". Sound familiar?

This is, in fact, where the idea for Baxter Stockman's Mousers in issue #2 of the TMNT comic book came from. Of course, as TMNT fans well know, those Mousers ended up looking a lot different than the one roughly sketched out here.

I have to chuckle when I look at pieces like this -- not because of the content, per se, but because it reminds me of those days when I couldn't afford decent paper, and would use anything I had at hand to draw on, even really cheap typing paper. You can see in this one that I drew some stuff on the reverse side (I think it was notes and a sketch for a "Hampshire Life" drawing), which shows through the flimsy paper. -- PL

Thursday, November 19, 2009

"Turtles Forever" to air this Saturday, November 21

This information has already been made widely available, but just in case any TMNT fans who read this blog are not aware of it yet, here it is:

“We’re excited to announce that the world premier of the “Turtles Forever” movie will take place on SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 21 at 10 a.m. on The CW4Kids TV. “Turtles Forever” will air on TV ONE TIME ONLY! Check your local listings. The classic Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles from the 1980’s are back with a new adventure set in the present day with the Turtles of the 21st Century! Experience more TMNT action than ever before.* Keep checking the TMNT blog for new TMNT “Turtles Forever” details as we get closer to the “Turtles Forever” movie world premier! PLUS will be doing lots of fun “Turtles Forever” activities, Papercraft, exclusive trailers, and MUCH MORE!”

I'm very happy that this is finally happening -- I think you will find it was worth the wait! -- PL

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Emily's TMNT thumbnail

Em was inspired a few days ago to craft this image of her favorite Turtle Leonardo's head on her thumbnail, painted on with fingernail polish.

I think she did a pretty good job! -- PL

Monday, November 16, 2009

Nothing like a big box of shiny robots to brighten up a fellow's day

Last week, I came into Mirage after a bicycle ride and found a large carton from Playmates in front of my office door.

Wonder of wonders, it was a box containing one hundred of the vacuum-metalized Fugitoid collector figures! Goongala! It even had some messages written on it by Gary and Mike.

It feels good to finally have in my possession a substantial number of these gleaming beauties. Kudos, once more, to Playmates for making a dream come true.

I mentioned the arrival of this bounty to my daughter the other night and she suggested that we decorate our Christmas tree this year with Fugitoids only. I said I thought it might be a hard sell, trying to convince my wife of the virtues of a Christmas tree laden with SAL-1000 'droids. But there will definitely be one or two of these shiny boys hanging on the old Yule tree this year. That vacuum-metalized coating will surely reflect the Christmas tree lights in interesting ways.

Mirage will be offering some of these figures for sale, but not for a while -- probably not until next year. But until then, you should be able to find them in some stores. Playmates tells us that they currently have Entertainment Earth (online retailer), Diamond Comics (distributor which services many different smaller retail shops), and Big Bad Toy Store (online retailer) signed on to carry these figures. -- PL

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Blast from the Past #252: Leonardo pin-up drawing

From back in 1987, here's another pin-up drawing I did of Leonardo... inked with an actual brush. -- PL

Monday, November 9, 2009

1984-2009 TMNT commemorative print

A few months before the likely date for the sale of the TMNT to Nickelodeon, Gary had the idea that it would be nice for Mirage to produce a special, limited edition print commemorating Mirage's twenty-five year run with the Turtles, a print that would be sent to various business associates and friends. I agreed, and we bounced around a few ideas. I think Gary was originally considering using the image of the Turtles from their first two-page spread in the first issue of the comic book, where they are all leaping out toward the reader. I suggested that we use that (actually my redrawn version of those figures), but also suggested that I would do four new drawings representing each of those four figures as seen from behind. Thus, we would have the Turtles symbolically arriving in 1984 and leaving in 2009.

I set to work, thinking that it would be relatively easy to produce the reverse view by simply flipping the images over on a light table and tracing their outlines. While this was somewhat useful to get some basic body positions, I soon realized that it wouldn't totally do. What I had not thought through is that when perspective is factored in, various body parts -- like Leo's out-thrust right foot, for example -- would be larger in the view from the front, but smaller in the view from the back. This added significantly more time to the drawing, but eventually I ended up with something I was satisfied with.

I handed off the scans of the artwork to my friend Rob, who is also a graphic designer, and he put the final print together, after a few discussions about layout and type... and here it is. -- PL

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Moving on

Ever since the first of the new TMNT toys based on the 2003 4Kids tv series started coming out, I've tacked them up on the walls of my office at Mirage (mostly just the figures, with a few veicles, accessories and playsets thrown in). I was inspired to do this by the example of Dan Berger, who had decorated his upstairs office with most (if not all) of the TMNT figures from the first wave. I had pretty much covered all of the available wall space a few years ago, and I had gotten used to having this kind of "wallpaper" of green in my office. Here's a view of one wall a couple of weeks ago:

But with the sale, and looking forward to a post-Turtles life, last week I thought it might be time to take the toys down and put them into storage. I hauled some boxes down to the office and started the process. It took me about three hours over the course of several days to get it done. I ran out of boxes near the end, so I have to bring some more down to pack everything up. Here's a view of the same wall as in the above photo, sans toys.

I will confess to a certain amount of melancholy in performing this task, even though I knew it had to be done. Although I had grown a little weary of the somewhat cluttered look of the walls in my office, they were cheerier than these now blank ones.

But with some spackle (to fill in the tack holes), a little sanding, and some fresh paint, things will look better. And maybe I'll be hanging some new artwork on these walls in the coming years. -- PL

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Blast from the Past #248: A visit from the Governor

A dew days ago, Katie was going through some old files and found this cool photo from the late 1980's.

I can't remember all the details, but then-Governor of Massachusetts Michael Dukakis honored us with a visit at the old Mirage Studios space. It was a short, but long enough for a photo op. -- PL