As I stated in my last post, there are basically 3 types of comic art: true comic art-pieces produced for publication including pages and covers; convention sketches; and studio commissions. Basically. I spend a lot of my comic art hobby money on commissions. Some of them (such as those by Paul Smith; Simon Bisley; Dean Ormston; Andy MacDonald; and Ulises Farinas among others) are among my favorites in my collection. But I have grown weary of the single figure commission (although I just ordered one yesterday, so sue me!), somewhat weary I guess, and more weary of spending big bucks on a commission in general. But I sold a bunch of art a few months ago in anticipation of the July Heritage comic art auction and when I did not bid high enough for the pieces I wanted I had some money sitting right there that had come from selling some pretty cherished in my collection.
I'll spare you the 2000 words describing the process, but eventually I decided on a commission from either Art Adams or Mike Allred. I had enough for good Mike Allred piece or a bit more than half an Art Adams figure. The Art Adams is a real priority for me, but the Allred pieces were 4 figures for $1000 and I had an itch I figured I may as well scratch. The time seemed right. You see, when Mike Allred started taking commissions I immediately did what I always do when a great artist announces commission openings, I thought about what I would get. now I have never read Mike's magnum opus MADMAN. Maybe an issue or two here and there but never really. But RED ROCKET 7 and SUPERMAN / MADMAN: HULLBALOO were big hits in my book. SOLO. I just loved the zany sense of fun and chaos in his comics. It was clear he was having a ball. So I immediately got a vague notion of Valkyrie and The Defenders playing volleyball on the beach, all drawn by Mike. I never really thought it through and never needed to go any further because it was clear: if there was to be a Mike Allred commission in my future it was going to be based on this idea. And what do you know? My future had arrived.
But wait, what could I do? The Valkyrie and The Defenders would be around 8 characters, and that was too much money. Because, and this is important, commissions do not have good resale value. They are high risk (too specific to your tastes, too weird DING!, they come out poorly, usually expensive, they could come out poorly, and did I mention...they could come out poorly). So spending all that money is one thing, but spending it on a weird and quirky idea is quite another. So The Defenders as a group was out. After trying to decide who to cut and who to keep in I decided to go in a different direction and go with Dr. Strange's posse. I even went the extra $200 for a 5th character when I decided on Doc, Clea, The Ancient One, Wong, and Rintrah..And a short time later, with facillitation by Simon Miller of www.gotsuperpowers.com, I had this-
|Dr. Strange and friends - a day off at the beach by Mike Allred|