Tuesday, July 17, 2012

New Website

I've made a new website and moved this blog HERE.

That website is http://www.mikecavallaro.com

Please visit the new site for more up-to-date news.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

CURSES! FOILED AGAIN

"Curses! Foiled Again" is the sequel to my 2009 graphic novel with author Jane Yolen, "Foiled", from First Second Books. I recently wrapped up 164 pages of interior artwork, which means now it's time for the front cover art. Here are the rough color comps I proposed to the editor:




The unrevised logo from the last book is thrown in there for placement. Clearly working with slight variations on a theme. We picked one, and pencils and inks followed:



Right now -- coloring in progress!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Cartoon Network Action Pack #66

Another cover, pencils/inks/colors by me, for this month's CARTOON NETWORK ACTION PACK #66 from DC Comics -- this one featuring Generator Rex and ... some kind of freaky tentacled X-Mas monster. Available now at your local comic shop!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Out Now

Here's a little bit of recent news ...

Out now is the new issue of DC Comics' CARTOON NETWORK ACTION PACK #65 with cover art by me featuring Ben 10, Generator Rex and crew.


I just finished work on CURSES! FOILED AGAIN, a 164-page graphic novel with writer Jane Yolen. CURSES is the second installment of the adventures of Aliera Carstairs, a 15-year-old Brooklynite turned protector of a secret, magical realm. The first volume, FOILED, is currently available from First Second Books. I still have to do the cover artwork, but the bulk of the work is done!


There's a couple new interviews online too. First THIS profile piece at BLEEP magazine.

Next, my webcomic / graphic novel PARADE (WITH FIREWORKS) is currently serializing at the MTV Geek website, and I did THIS interview to go along with the launch.

Friday, November 25, 2011

More Batman

Just caught another episode of Batman: The Brave & The Bold with a few of my backgrounds. I think these all aired a while ago, but I'm only seeing them now. The episode, "Powerless", has a fascinating costume accessory for Aquaman, as well as a musical sequence sung by the Marine Marvel himself. Plus, towards the end, my Washington, D.C. backdrops.

Full episode:


Screen Caps:


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Home of the Brave

I got a few minutes into this recent episode of the "Batman: The Brave and The Bold" animated series when I realized it features some backgrounds I had painted a few months ago. A really fun sequence featuring a baseball game between the Justice League International and the Legion of Doom, from the "Triumvirate of Terror" episode. I love the Al Plastino-esque Superman design, the way.

Here's a link to the youtube clip:



And here's a few screen caps.







Thursday, November 17, 2011

HISTORY

Some of you older readers might remember something called a “compact disc.” Like the name suggests, these were relatively small, shiny, plastic repositories for almost any sort of digital file(s) under 700 megabytes. Most people my age first encountered them as a way to buy music. “Buying” is when you purchase something, in this case legally, with money, instead of downloading it for free. Speaking of which, we used to “buy” these things in “stores”, but not the kind you’re thinking of! No, these stores were actual physical locations! Imagine a first-person video game where the goal is shopping instead of shooting, and you’ll have some idea what it was like to get in the car and drive over to one of these “music stores.”

If I haven’t already convinced you that the past was actually some sort of dystopian future, now try to imagine that compact discs were the new kid on the block, and that what we had for, I dunno, centuries or something were vinyl records. Records were like the scary older cousin of compact discs; feathered hair, kind of a moustache, smells like cigarettes, stays out late. Crazier still, you needed something called a “turntable” in order to play one of these records, because at 12” in diameter, they couldn’t fit into a computer. In fact, outside of the hidden kingdom of Wakanda, there were no computers!!!

During this time-lost era, nomadic tribes roamed the wastelands in a rag-tag assortment of vehicles, sometimes forming fragile unions, but mostly vying against each other for control of scant resources. That’s right, I’m talking about punk rock bands like the ones I blew a good 10 years or so playing in. Mine limped through floods, fires, fights, frights and flights with all the highs, lows and body blows that come with the territory. I learned a lot, was confused by other things, made friends, lost some of those, did a lot of driving, broke stuff, and spent tons of money. Despite repeated disasters, I look back on all this fondly. My best friends are the ones I made during this time. There’s something about driving a flaming van down the sheer side of a mountain that just sort of … bonds you for life. No matter what else you do later on, this stuff kinda of sticks with you.

After about six years and six tours and a bunch of these records I’ve been talking about, one of these bands of mine had broken up and I was pretty broken up about it. Meanwhile, I had written a song with my friends in The Bouncing Souls, and they wanted me to come out to L.A. to record it with them. It seemed like a good opportunity to get out of my funk. I packed my guitar and flew out there, swearing I was done with bands and music after this. Instead of flying back home though after the recording sessions, I decided to tag along and drive back to New York with the Souls, which took about a month. The Souls insisted I was a “guest” and wouldn’t let me do anything, like drive. I think they thought I’d kill us all. But that left me with nothing to do but play guitar in the truck. By the time we got back to New York, I’d accidentally written half an album’s worth of new songs. I put another band together and we eventually recorded it all in a tiny studio in Pennsylvania. We couldn’t find anyone to put it out though. That band fell apart, we all went on to do other stuff, and I eventually forgot all about that record.

Something like 15 years passed. The internet was created, and as a result, I got an email from Matt Von and Jeff Ogiba of Psychic Volt Records. Psychic Volt is a new breed of old skool record label, specializing in small print runs of actual vinyl records. They sell these with digital download codes for people who don’t have turntables and don’t want music to sound good. Anyway, Matt and Jeff had heard about the unreleased record and offered to put it out, and I said, “YEAH, OVER MY DEAD BODY!” No, seriously folks, I said “Yeah, sure, why not?” So, I drew up some cover art and they did the rest and this strange artifact will see the light of day in the next few months.

If you want to hear what I sounded like a decade and a half ago, breaking guitar strings and screaming over a cacophony of distortion in a Pennsylvanian basement, you can order the self-titled Johnny X and the Conspiracy full-length vinyl record via the internet at the Psychic Volt “webstore.” That’s like a real store, only it’s always open and lives in your computer.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

SHIRTS FOR A CURE @ NYCC

The SHIRTS FOR A CURE Project was established by punk-rock photographer Mark Beemer to help raise awareness about breast cancer prevention and to provide financial assistance to underprivileged women who cannot afford expensive breast cancer medicine and therapy.

Exclusive shirt designs are donated mostly by bands, with proceeds from sales going to support SFAC's efforts. You can browse more than 150 different shirt designs at www.shirtsforacure.com. For a donation of $14 (plus shipping and handling) you will be helping someone who is in need as well as receiving an exclusive shirt from your favorite band.

But that's not all.

Shirts For A Cure is bringing their fundraising efforts to New York ComicCon . Appearing at BOOTH #241, SFAC has a list of special guests including Gerard Way, Cliff Chiang, Molly Crabapple and Brian Ewing, and exclusive items for convention-goers who want to lend a hand to a worthy cause.

- Brian Ewing, one of rock music and pop art’s most prolific, iconic image-makers, will be on hand to sign 50 hand-screened prints designed exclusively for SFAC, at the SFAC booth #241, on Friday, October 14th, starting at 2pm, while supplies last. Brian also provides the red "umbrella girl" T-shirt design.

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- Cliff Chiang, artist of the new Wonder Woman comic book series from DC Comics, will be appearing at the SFAC booth #241 on Friday, October 14 from 4 - 5 pm. He'll be signing an exclusive $10 Wonder Woman print for the first 50 fans, with all proceeds going to benefit SFAC's ongoing efforts.
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Other contributors include:

- Gerard Way, My Chemical Romance frontman and the Will Eisner Comics Industry Award-winning writer of Umbrella Academy. Gerard provides the "white violin" T-shirt design.

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- Molly Crabapple, the New York Times-dubbed "Downtown Phenomenon", illustrator and founder of Dr. Sketchy's Anti Art School. Molly provides the "art monkey" T-shirt.

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- Mike Cavallaro, Eisner Award-nominated comics creator and, as "Johnny X", frequent collaborator with NJ punk legends, The Bouncing Souls, along with his own bands, Sticks & Stones and Zero Zero. Mike provides the "skull and headphones" T-shirt design.

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Drinks For A Cure / iFanboy NYCC After-Party

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- The folks at iFanboy have teamed up with Shirts for a Cure to throw an awesome party and help in the fight against breast cancer. Comic book superstars Kieron Gillen (Uncanny X-Men, Journey Into Mystery, Phonogram) and Jamie McKelvie (X-Men: Season One, Phonogram) will step up to the turntables to DJ, as well as iFanboy's very own Ron Richards (DJ Ronxo), who will also be DJing a set. Proceeds from drinks will go to charity to help fight breast cancer! This has got the makings of yet another epic iFanboy party that you don’t want to miss!
WHEN: Friday, October 14th – 9 PM to close
WHERE: Idle Hands Bar – 25 Avenue B (between 2nd St. and 3rd St.)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Shirts For A Cure

I created this design for the Shirts For A Cure project and will be joining SFAC at their booth at this year's New York Comic Con, 2011, at the Jacob Javits Center in NYC. From the Shirts For A Cure website:

The Syrentha J. Savio Endowment (SSE) was established by punk-rock photographer Mark Beemer in 2002. SSE provides financial assistance to underprivileged women who cannot afford expensive breast cancer medicine and therapy. The Shirts For A Cure Project (SFAC) was launched by SSE to give voice to the social concerns of punk bands and their many fans as well as to raise awareness about breast cancer prevention.

When a band donates a shirt design to SFAC, the design becomes exclusive to SSE. We sell the shirt and use the proceeds to help women fighting breast cancer. If you would like to support our cause please take a moment to peruse the more then 150 shirts we offer. All shirts are printed on 100% pre-shrunk cotton unless otherwise stated. For a donation of $14 (plus shipping and handling) you will be helping someone who is in need as well as receiving an exclusive shirt from your favorite band.

My design, as well as one by Molly Crabapple will go on sale at this year's NYCC, October 13 - 16.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dog Days Update

I hope I'm not tempting the weather gods when I say I've known hotter Augusts. Someone told me today that another heat wave is on the way, but otherwise it's been pretty nice here in Brooklyn, and I've had a few good nights in the backyard this year, which goes a long way to counter balance the hours and hours at the drawing table.

I just recently finished penciling 164 pages of CURSES! FOILED AGAIN, the follow-up to the FOILED graphic novel with writer Jane Yolen. Now it's on to lettering and inking which should take a few months. Here's a page of pencil roughs:


I've also been working on a side project with writer J.M. DeMatteis, my one-time collaborator on The Life And Times of Savior 28. This one's very different from that, though, and here's a crazy double-page spread to prove it:


Lastly, Psychic Volt records will be releasing some songs I recorded with a band 15 years ago and never did anything with. It will be an L.P. Show of hands, who still knows what that is? Here's the front cover for the album artwork:


Now, back to work!