Azn Badger's Blog

What About the Lysine Contingency…?

Favorite Cover Artists: Francesco Mattina

Mattina does Batman.

While I can’t say I know a whole lot about Francesco Mattina other than the fact that he’s Italian, I do know this:

He makes some damn spiffy comic book covers.

While it must be said that he isn’t the most flexible of artists, as he’s been utilizing essentially the same style/aesthetic for as long as I’ve known of him, when it comes to what he does, there aren’t many that can challenge him.

Yes, not even the hairy Canadian.

So, I guess you’re probably wondering, what is it that Mr. Mattina does?

Put simply, he does artwork of the “darker” variety.

He does gritty:

DAMN.

He does awesome:

DOUBLE-DAMN!

And more often than not, he does it all while sticking to the dynamic and macho figure renderings and poses that have embodied superhero comics since their inception.

Thank you Google Images for lising Razor Ramon under the search terms "dynamic machismo."

Despite this though, one of the key strengths to his artwork, is his eye for composition.

Much like Marko Djurdjevic, (who will most certainly be making an appearance in this series of posts) Francesco Mattina quite obviously has a background in graphic design, resulting in the vast majority of his covers being eye-catching not just for the gorgeous artwork, but also for the creative and enticing layouts.

Take a look at this for example:

I know, it's Deadpool. Stop sucking his cock, fanboy. He's not THAT cool...

Aside from his compositions, his color work is flat-out amazing.

Most of his work has a sort of metallic looking sheen on it that gives everything a unique and lively look that emphasizes motion and atmosphere.

A little bit TOO Michael Bay Transformers-ish, but still cool nonetheless.

I also appreciate how, much like Ivan Reis and Ethan Van Sciver, Francesco Mattina also favors a slightly more realistic approach to the anatomy of his characters.

Not only that, I also find myself consistently impressed by some of his interpretations of certain character’s costume designs, as his photo-realistic style forces a level of detail that results in many of the costumes being rendered in a more believable, and therefore, practical; fashion.

Azrael, looking absolutely the best he ever has.

On a completely unrelated note, I couldn’t help but notice that his interpretation of Nova’s armor is alarming close to Richard Gyuo’s from Guyver:

Nova...

Gyuo...

Anyway, I first ran across Francesco Mattina when I was first considering getting into the Thunderbolts comic.

Truth be told, Mattina and Marko Djurdjevic’s work on that series was probably the biggest deciding factor in me picking up that book.

I’m oh so happy I did.

Anyway, I’m running out of steam, so I’ll just finish with this awesome, and brand spankin’ new Moon Knight cover:

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Dr. Vladimir’s Space Virus

Doctor Vladimir’s Space Virus

by Eric Burmill

Doctor Maximus Vladimir is the top scientist of the United Star Systems and he believes he’s developed a revolutionary new medicine to reduce the body’s physical deterioration in old age. He delivers his serum to a trusted colleague, Colonel Henry Mortok, without the knowledge that the colonel is member of K.I.L.L., a secret order bent on destroying all life in the universe. Mortok modifies the serum into a biological weapon and distributes it across all of the space colonies. Too late Dr. Vladimir realizes that his friend has used his discovery to unleash a deadly plague across the galaxy. Now it’s up to our hero to battle the secret order, confront his former friend, find a cure to save the billions of lives at stake, and clear his good name before he and the rest of the human race are erased from existence.

(Story Concept and Image used with the consent of Jeffrey Dong)

The above is part of an art exchange project between myself and a good friend of mine, Jeff Dong.

The idea came up while we were at Barnes & Noble rooting through the Sci-Fi/Fantasy novel section, intentionally looking for the dumbest and most ridiculous cover arts we could find.

And the winner for most awesome book cover EVER goes to...

Jeff Dong came up with the neat idea of challenging ourselves to come up with fake concepts for books that would go well with retarded cover art.

Basically, we were to exchange intentionally retarded Sci-Fi/Fantasy novel ideas, and then produce Photoshop renditions of the cover art for said stories.

The above example is my interpretation of Jeff Dong’s story idea.

Even though it took me more than a month to actually sit down and do this project, (largely on account of me having to write this damn blog!) I have to admit that I genuinely had fun with it.

Even though it’s cheesy, and definitely retarded, I also have to say that I am also somewhat proud of my work on this image.

Anyway, needed a break from writing, so instead I decided to treat myself to a day of flexing my artistic creativity.

Pictured: My "Artistic Creativity"

Hope you enjoyed, be on the lookout for Jeff Dong’s cover image for my story, it’s a hoot!

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