Monday, February 7, 2011

Bucking the trends

 So apparently there's this thing called ESPN Magazine, and every year before basketball season they do a preview issue where they make predictions about each team in the NBA. This year, Marvel Comics handled that section and I was asked to contribute an illustration.

Key members of each team were represented by Marvel characters. My team was the Milwaukee Bucks, but if, unlike me, you know something about sports, you already knew that. You could tell just by looking at the illustration.

Me, I'd never heard of them before I got the reference. Nor had I heard of players Jennings and Bogut, featured here as Powerman & Ironfist, respectively. (Powerman & Ironfist I had heard of.)

None of that really matters though.  Here's why: despite knowing jack and shit about sports, I really like drawing sports imagery. If you think about it, athletes and superheroes... not so different. I mean, they both wear colorful, icon encrusted costumes, both have idealised, chiseled physiques, and drawing both requires the ability to capture intense dynamic motion.

Not so different.
Chain-link fence in background added digitally. Why? I'm not crazy, that's why.

My original version.  See above for the slightly tweaked final. ESPN got uneasy about depicting a black dude wearing "shackles and chains."

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