Saturday, March 31, 2007

Some Animals I Like

Here we have a grouping of my favorite forest animals. There's a bird...that's reasonable enough. And then there' octopus. Well, why not? And then there's the dogephant. I don't know if I started drawing a dog and changed my mind halfway through, or just wasn't clear on how elephants are put together. Judging by the smaller ears, this is an Indian dogephant rather than an African dogephant.

Friday, March 30, 2007

The War of the Worlds

Two different drawings of Martian war machines from the George Pal production of War of the Worlds. While it was always a favorite (helped along by plenty of coverage in Famous Monsters and Starlog), these were probably prompted by a 1979 showing of a double feature of WOTW and Close Encounters of the Third Kind that I attended at the Sky-Way Drive-In in Anderson, SC (about a year before it shut for good). I recall being amused at the juxtaposition of the radically different views of alien contact, giving a kind of 'point/counterpoint" approach to the theme. My other most vivid memory of the drive-in experience is from a year previous, when I dragged my parents to The Incredible Melting Man. I was thoroughly disappointed with it, and irritated with the gratuitous '70s nudity, when I was there to see melting flesh and action, and there wasn't enough of either! Phooey! I do hope to at some point get the Halloween costume, though.

To conclude our presentation, let me note that today's posting is sponsored by the letter "F".

Thursday, March 29, 2007


I'm sure there was a rationale for putting a cape and boots on an otherwise not particularly anthropomorphized crab. What it was, I cannot recall. I don't think this was a character I though through to any extent, or tried to develop further (like the Bionic Banana, whom you'll meet at some point). I think I just felt like drawing seafood with clothing.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Mickey Mouse and a Centaur

This is from the back of Monday's drawing. I don't know why the centaur looks like he has a cow's tail, but he seems to be okay with it, and with his single screwy arm. I guess he and Mickey are just happy that the lightning didn't strike them.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

"The Martian"

Just to mix things up a little, here's a short story for you fans of Speculative Fiction. It's taken it 31 years to see "print"... but that still means I'm doing better than all the people whose stories are in THE LAST DANGEROUS VISIONS.
In case you can't decipher my elegant calligraphy, here's a transcription:

The Martian

by Devlin

One day as I was walking along, I met a Martian. I wanted to take a picture, but I forgot my film. It had 39 eyes, smelled like rotten eggs, had 59 limbs, and had blue skin. All of a sudden it shot a ray g* at me! I lunged at it and knocked it into its spaceship. It flew off. The End.

* Presumably, I had originally intended to write "ray gun", then decided that "ray" alone was adequate, but then, for whatever reason, neglected to erase the false start.

This fellow is not meant to represent the titular spaceman, but it's from about the same time, so why the heck not?

Monday, March 26, 2007

To the Bat-Mailbox, Robin!

Actually, I think that Batman generally avoids going to get the mail in tends to draw unwanted attention. Better to just let Alfred get it.

UPDATE: Looking at it again, I realize that the flag is up, indicating that Batman is in fact putting mail out to be delivered. I still feel like that's not a wise think to do at Wayne Manor, when it would be more prudent to find a public mailbox, but I think I can show how that letter was signed:

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Behold the Protractor!

...also the triangle and the circle guide. I think these were done partly with the aid of a spiral-bound set of flimsy cardboard stencils and templates sold under the name "School Tools". A cool idea in theory, but its being made of cardstock with die-cuts that you had to punch out meant that all your traced shapes tended to have a couple of flaws at the connection points, and use with "juicier" felt-tips would soften the working edge of the template. So, like all poor craftsmen, I blame my tools for any flaws thes images may hold.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Flying Saucers

Not much to say about this one...just a couple of outer space types out for a weekend drive around the solar system.

Friday, March 23, 2007


Two drawings that I apparently found unacceptable at the time. Now I find myself to be my own Max Brod, bringing to light work that the 8-year old me never wanted to be seen. Sorry, kid. I guess I can see why I didn't like Bulletman, but he has his charm. My own Bulletman was chewed to death by a neighborhood dog; my associates and I made a sarcophagus for him from an old toolbox and put his remains in a crypt deep inside a stack of terra-cotta pipes behind our apartment building. I actually don't recall ever exhuming his remains over the subsequent decade of my residence there. The place has been messed with considerably since then, and I know it's long gone by now, but I do wonder at what point somebody found this puzzling relic. The Enterprise and the Andorian look comparable to my other drawings of the time, but I apparently felt differently. It's possible that the Andorian was referenced from the Star Fleet Medical Reference Manual, which I've still kept around, just in case I ever need to intubate a Gorn.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

The Solar System and Beyond

A reasonably accurate map of the solar system, though the relative sizes and distances between the planets are obviously off. Also, I've depicted no moons other than Earth's, and only Saturn has its ring (though, in my defense, I believe that none of the other rings would be discovered until a few years later). And, for the record, Pluto is still a planet as far as I'm concerned. I have no objection to adding a few, but I'm not giving up any of the ones we already had. Note the additional portrayal of young Kal-El's rocket leaving Krypton and its red sun, embarking upon his long journey towards Smallville and his new parents.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Space Baby

Popeye's gonna need a lot of spinach to rescue Swee'pea this time. Note the relatively sophisticated way I handled the radio-transmitted crying (and the unusually sloppy hands). But for real precocity in the field of sequential fiction, click here.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The McDonalds of the Future

The Jetsons influence is is the shaky perspective on the offramp. There's also the question of why there is a need for this elevated roadway if air travel is so common that the sky is filled with rockets. Also the question of why the sky-cycle cop is hassling the hovercraft when there are clearly space pirates in the vicinity...possibly led by the Hamburglar of the Future!

Monday, March 19, 2007


Q: Why does a super-hero wear red suspenders?

A: To hold his prosthetic leg-rockets on!

THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN introduced the idea of prosthetics as super-power to a whole generation of kids...the idea that grievous bodily disfigurement is your ticket to adventure! I can recall imagining the fun I might have if I weren't saddled with those puny meat-limbs of mine. In retrospect, the White House might have gotten more bang for the buck using the money spent on bribing radio personalities and producing fake news spots to instead produce a new, extreme version of our old buddy Steve Austin. I'm sure the kids would be mobbing the recruiters looking for their chance to score an awesome new bionic arm or two.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Contour Drawings

Not blind contour drawings, but that would probably been even more hilarious. Note that, at this point, at least, I have equal allegiance to Lucas and Rodenberry. STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE sorely tested my faith, though in the end it would seem almost watchable next to the horror that was RETURN OF THE JEDI. Nowadays, I'd be just as happy if I never saw anything new from either camp ever again.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Junior Toy Designers

If memory serves me, these were done at Camp Broadstone in the summer of 1980 in collaboration with a fellow camper, about whom I can remember nothing except that he was black and I think his name may have started with "E", because I believe that we derived the name of this from our initials. My memory of it is that we were imagining something along the line of the Mego Buck Rogers figures crossed with Matchbox MAC figures, but nicer. The vehicle seems to be inspired by the rare Buck Rogers Land Rover with a bit of a Micronauts flavor. As you can see, we were very serious about this.
As I think about this further, I'm actually less certain that these are the aforementioned collaborative designs after all, because I suddenly had a vague mental picture of characters that were more like rip-offs of Ferro Lad. Also, there's no evidence of another hand than my own on either page. I just can't say at this point. Memory is a wiggly thing. Anyway, two facts are known:I designed some toys with another kid once, and these are some toy designs that I drew. Whether there is any correlation between those two facts is anyone's guess.

Viva Knievel!

At first glance, I just these were just drawings of motorcyclists, until a closer examination made me realize that the upper right-hand panel is a depiction of Evel Knievel's unsuccessful Snake River Canyon jump on Sept. 8th, 1974. The other panels show other things Evel likes to do: pop wheelies, stand up on the seat,or ride a chopper (I don't think those are supposed to be ape hangers...I just couldn't draw motorcycles very well). Like most 6-year old Americans that year, I admired Knievel, but my real interest in him was less as a person than as a toy (the Six Million Dollar Man kinda falls into that category, too). As such, his later fall from grace didn't really affect me that much...though I never bought any of the reconfigured toys when they came back as "Team America." I owed him that much, I guess.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Monster Jokes

The old jokes are the best jokes. Don't know where Frankenstein's ear went, though.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Blood 'N' Guts

This is one of the relatively few pieces that I can date with any degree of certainty, as it's part of a sheaf of torn-out pages that I labeled "Camp Broadstone, Summer '80." It shows all the symptoms of the crappiness that infects kid's drawings around age 12 , but it still has a certain awful charm. I definitely advise clicking to enlarge this one...there are many nuances that reward close examination. I was clearly trying really hard to get this right...I reposed the monster's arms, erased unnecessary antennae, rendered shadows even! We won't discuss the fact that those shadows are running in opposite directions, or try to figure out the hapless spacemen's relative sizes, or even speculate why the prostrate gentleman's blood looks more like a necktie draped across him. Still, Rob Liefield has published worse.

Sunday, March 11, 2007


A two-headed zebra thing riding on the back of a giant caterpillar with a horse's tail? Why not? They seem happy, though the zebra's bottom head is bored. I don't know what my intent with the other little squiggle between them was...possibly the head of another critter I realized I didn't have room for.

This fellow looks happy enough, if a bit noncommital about it.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Suspicious Characters

They're clearly up to something. What's in that briefcase? Actually, I carried an avocado green leatherette briefcase to school in first grade that looked alot like this one. Mine usually had those big fat pencils, some Bic Banana pens, and an assortment of tattered comic books.

Friday, March 9, 2007

The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh

My rendering of Dr. Christopher Syn's alter-ego, presumably drawn shortly after seeing the Disney version on Wonderful World of Disney (or possibly reading the novelization of same), in March 1976.For a different approach to the same thing, here's Dan Spiegle's take on him:

I've got most of the Gold Key comics in my collection, but the one closest at hand was a coverless Mexican issue under the name "El Espantajo", so that's what you get.
I never saw it as a child (and never realized it was from the same source until I finally saw last year), but I recommend Night Creatures, the Hammer adaptation that came out the same year as the Disney one.

Thursday, March 8, 2007


Man...Supie sure is happy!This one displays a perhaps-borderline dyslexic tendency of mine to transpose "P" and "B" (also "M" and "W")...but I caught it in time! Also, then and now, I've always really liked lowercase "e".

From a year or so earlier, here are a couple of abandoned attempts (not actually from the same page, but united by Photoshop). The first one I obviously didn't care for, but I don't know why I didn't finish the other one.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

The Descent of Man

Ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon and welcome. I have convened this symposium to present my new timeline for Man's evolution. I originally prepared these diagrams some 31 years ago, but after one presentation at Margaret Morrison Elementary Institute, it was apparent that the scientific community at that time was unprepared to accept my conclusions. I shall commence with Figure 1:

This depicts the well-known progression from "anthropomorphic tadpole" to "gill-man" to "Chaka" to "Dennis the Menace as an adult". Where I break from current orthodoxy is my radically compressed timeline. Proto-man (homo tadpolus) debuted, not in the distant past, but in the year 0 A.D. This necessitates a complete rethinking of history as we know it (as well as the suggestion that the Nativity may have looked much different than my depiction of it). In a remarkably swift transformation, just one year later, h.tadpolus has evolved into a bipedal, lagoon-dwelling amphibian with a fondness for brunettes. Three-quarters of a century later, he left the water for land, abandoning his scales and gills in favor of a protective coat of fur, and embarked upon a course to dominance over the dinosaurs and sleestaks that were his competitors for the harsh new world of dry land. 1,901 years later, he had assumed the form of homo sapiens, and his only natural predators were teachers, pesky girls, and, of course, Mr. Wilson. And now, let us proceed to Figure 2:

Unsatisfied with merely upending the current understanding of history, I then opted to present my view of Mankind's future. The future holds much more gradual changes for us, but environmental changes will by the year 5099 A.D. create a race of genial, shark-headed hominids with a passion for jogging on what unsubmerged landmasses remain. Eventually, by the year 200,000, man will begin in earnest to return to the seas that spawned him so long ago, regrowing his fins and scales. And finally, in the year 3 Million A.D., Man will have achieved his ultimate mutation, with enlarged eyes for utilizing what little light our worn-out sun may produce, thick scales to block cosmic rays that pass freely through the long-depleted ozone layer, a fish-tail in addition to legs (just to show up those snooty mermaids), and large, sharp claws, because, even in that far-distant time, claws will look cool and be easy to draw. At this point, the sun blows up.

I welcome the scientific community's comment.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Spirits of the Dead

Pretty straightforward. A personal note to one of our readers: Hey, Klon...make sure you show this one to Bela!

Monday, March 5, 2007

This I Believe

I pledge allegiance to the Flag, and to the Batman (not necessarily in that order).

Sunday, March 4, 2007



Poo-Poo Money

I have NO IDEA what I had in mind with this. But here it is. Make of it what you will.

Saturday, March 3, 2007


My interpretation of events from X-MEN #91 (cover date 12/74, so I would have read it in August or September, and probably drew this at that time). This was actually a reprint of #43, from 1968, but I don't think I realized it at the time. Having read their first appearance in SON OF ORIGINS OF MARVEL COMICS, I started reading X-MEN with #89, read it to this point, and don't seem to have read the next couple of reprint ones or even realized that the book was still extant until 1980ish, when I learned that Professor X hadn't been dead for very long at all, and that it had all been resolved before my first birthday.
This may have been the only time in my life that I ever drew the Angel, even if I didn't really finish him. If I ever have a tombstone, I want it to have a crude bust of me mounted on top like this one.

Friday, March 2, 2007


Both sides of a folder from either third or fourth grade (I skipped forward at mid-year, so I'm not sure). I feel that this has to be one of those rather than second grade because of the fact that the shuttlecraft on the STAR TREK side is referenced from the Dinky Enterprise, which I got at Lenox Toy & Hobby on a trip to Atlanta sometime in mid-1976. I had drawn what appears to be a light bulb-nosed robot Superman being captured in some sort of net or bubble, but chose to erase him and do the Flair (or possibly Bic Banana) felt-tip rendering of the Enterprise instead. The monsters on the other side are from nowhere in particular, except for the upper left-hand one, who is from THE OUTER LIMITS, drawn from a book on science fiction films that I had (Can't remember the title, but it had a violet cover with a photo from FLASH GORDON on it). I can't seem to find the original photo anywhere, but this trading card is the same monster, I think.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Robot Overkill

This fellow is pretty well-prepared for nearly any eventuality, up to and including towing illegally-parked cars or administering injections. And yet, all that he chooses to do is to destroy a tree. I think that stuff at the tip of his nose is a set of doors opening to reveal another missile of some sort.

This fellow is less aggressive in his general look, but he's in danger of legal action from several of his metallic colleagues. Let's break it down: he's got Raydeen's legs, an upper torso reminscent of Iron Man's, ear thingys patterned after Robby, and I think his head may be based on Lucifer (though I believe that the top of the head was not intended to be a dome, but a set of sliding doors modeled on the U.S.S. Enterprise's shuttle bay). I think this may have been intentional, but that's probably after-the-fact rationalization. What is unique about him, though are his three rows of pouches around the midriff. Now that's a utility belt!