Friday, May 19, 2006

Pictures Worth More than 1000 Words!


I'd like to share a few of the original art pieces I received for my recent 50th b-day. I'm not gloating--- I'm really just so appreciative of all the thoughtful cards, letters, drawings and good wishes---and I'd like to share some of them with you.

I've been a big supporter and fan of Jeff Bonivert's singular style for many years. He puts a lot of humor and a lot of heart into everything he does. Notice the gang in the background? That's part of the Flying Colors' Retailing Brigade---Jenny, Mike and Brian.

This piece comes with a story---- and I'll let you read it when you visit the store next, OK?

Jeff also did for me a cover recreation of Amazing Spider-Man #39---and one of the cool things about it is, while my fave comic artist John Romita did the original cover, Jeff's rendition has a lot more Ditko-style twists to it. Right now, I'm displaying this piece on our artboard in Flying Colors. On the same board are some very cool pieces by Jenny (that's her Greg Land-ish Storm), Flying Colors' Retailing Brigade member Andy (who did the Blob-ish looking piece) and Andy's significant other/girlfriend/all around cool gal cartoonist Kat (who did the ultra-cool Superman art shown here) and Keri (FlyCo regular and the world's biggest Captain Marvel--Shazam!-- fan Darné's beautiful daughter) did the very sweet Ms Marvel page.
Like I said, I'm a lucky guy!

Dan Brereton was living in Walnut Creek when Flying Colors first opened in October '88. At that point Dan had his first work published in the Eclipse magazine called "Merchants of Death" (with a title like that, it didn't last long). Anyway, Dan's star was just starting to rise because his next project was "Black Terror", also from Eclipse. It was one of the first fully-painted comic series on the market and it was just a hint of the talent to come from Mr. Brereton. Locals have really been snapping up copies of Dan's GIANTKILLER which takes place on Mount Diablo and other recognizable Bay Area locales.

Anyway, Dan painted this piece from an old photo of a 12 year-old me. It was the only photo from my youth showing me reading a comic book! Wow! Thank you, my friend!

One of my mentors and good friends in the comics' biz was Bill Liebowitz, the "Big Kahuna" of Golden Apple Comics in Los Angeles. The comics' industry lost a giant when Bill passed away a year and half ago.
Over the years I knew Bill, Libby and I also became close with Bill's wife Sharon, and Bill & Sharon's son Ryan and I worked together for a couple of years when I had a hand in hiring Ryan to be the general manager of WonderCon. Anyway, the roots go deep between the Liebowitz and Field families.

So it was with honor that I received this piece of art from Sharon, originally done by Kevin McGuire at DC Comics when Bill turned 50 in 1991. Sharon sent it to me for my 50th with a note mentioning that Ryan, who is now at the helm of Golden Apple (as the "L'il Kahuna"--- all 6'5" of him!), turns 50 in October 2024! Guess what Ryan's gonna get for his half-century b-day?!

Sharon, this means a lot to me---and it is now hanging in my office to keep inspiring me with fond memories of Bill and you and our friendship. Thank you!


Peace, all---

FlyCoJoe
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