Saturday, November 07, 2009

A Special Anniversary Post

Sorry I haven't posted here for a while, I've been busy trying to make my own foray into the field of comics! But I have been planning this particular post for a while, to be put up on this particluar day too.

You see, it was on this day, the 7th of November, back in 1999, that I first made contact with Bart Sears.

As most of you know, I've been a fan of Bart's since way back in 1991, and I pretty rapidly became an avid fan, chasing down every item of his I could, but I didn't think to try and contact him until years later. So, one day, I sent off a letter to Marvel Comics care of Bart in early November and received an email from Bart on the 7th.
I can tell you that I was rather excited to receive an email from him, and it is funny how Bart's first line to me still rings true today-
"Thank you for the letter you sent, it just arrived today. I'm overwhelmed, actually, I think you have a better idea of the work I've done than I do."

Since that first email, all of those years ago, Bart and I have gone on to be good friends, and there really hasn't been a time when we haven't been in contact. I've even visited him a few times. The first time, in 2004, was a week of pure magic for me. We hung around his apartment, him drawing Cap/Falcon, me organising his boxes and boxes of photocopies and original art. We'd have bad action movies on in the background, go out to dinner, go to movies.

I think I slept for maybe 20 hours during the whole week! I got to meet all of the gang as well- Andy Smith, Mike Atiyeh, Rob Hunter, Ron Marz, his brother Brett and his family.
Bart even gave me a private art lesson, and let me do a background on Cap/Falcon 3.

Around about that time, I ran the first and only Bart Sears Fan Club, which unfortunately only lasted a year (due to time constraints on my end). There were only a few dozen members in the club, but it was incredibly fun to interview Bart on a range of subjects, not to mention showing to those members of the fan club some of Bart's lesser known work.

I visited Bart for the second time a few years after the first trip, and it was another brilliant time. I got to meet more friends, including distant relative (of mine) Mark Pennington and his family. We had a crazy night out with Rob Hunter, fun around the house with Bart's own family, and plenty of drawing and yet more box organising. Bart was working on Warlord 10 at the time, work that never saw print, unfortunately, because Bart got me working on blacks and a bit of inking-
Bart Sears 'Warlord #10 page 5'

I haven't visited Bart in far too long now, but have plans in place to do so some time in the future.
But we regularly email each other, or IM as we've been doing lately. We don't really talk about our own history as friends, but I think about it a lot. Like the time Bart sent my wife and I a two-page spread of original art from The Path for our wedding gift, or that first care package he sent me back in late 2000. Or the countless emails back and forth, mostly work related, but the special ones being when we'd talk about the crap in our lives and just be able to let it all out. Or the email, dated 16 November, 2000, where Bart states, regarding me being his Official #1 fan -"I don't know who else could be Number 1."

I often think about my two visits to him, just chatting about Ominous Press and coming up with some incredible ideas (mostly Bart).
But mostly, I think about how thankful I am that Bart answered that first letter I sent him, and how generous a person he is for all that he has done for me since.

Here's to the 10 years, Bart, may many more follow!
Bart & Jay, 2006

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Guess what the Postman delivered today? #10

Well, I finally got my scanner going again after a few weeks of it not working at all, and that can only mean one thing - I've got some catching up to do!
So, this installment of 'Guess what the Postman delivered today?' actually includes two shipments of Bart Sears comics that I've received over the past couple of weeks.

So pop the kettle on and settle in, because this is going to be a long one.

The first shipment of comics arrived on the 11th of September from my old friends at Mile High Comics. I'd been particularly looking forward to this shipment as I knew it would contain a few more of those issues that may or may not have Bart's work in them.

First off came copies of Chaos! Comics title 'Chaos Quarterly.' In retrospect it was probably a bit of a long shot, but I, at the time, hoped that Bart's cover to Cremator #1 might be previewed or some such in at least one of the issues; so I bought issues 1 & 2. But nope, nothing of Bart's in there.
Next came an issue of Amazing Heroes. I'd done some research into what each issue of the comic magazine contained, and decided on Amazing Heroes #160, mostly because the issue was supposed to be about foreign comics and American publishers of them. So I figured there had to be at least something on Quality Comics in there and maybe a picture or two of some of the covers Bart did for them. But nope, again, nothing like that in there. There was some mention of QC, but only in the upcoming comics section, where these issues were listed-
Of course Bart didn't actually do any of those covers...
On the following page was also an in depth review of Justice League Europe, printed in it's entirety below.
Amazing Heroes JLE Review
Yep, pretty disappointing really, especially considering the fact that Amazing Heroes #87 had an enormous 6 page article dedicated to Hero Alliance, resplendent with plenty of Bart Sears images.
Oh well.
Next out of the package were a few issues of Hero Illustrated, another comic magazine that had the misfortune of having to compete with Wizard in the early '90's. Its actually not a bad publication, certainly less fanboy-y as Wizard, but I believe it suffered from a weak layout, among other things. As a comic magazine, they didn't have much to say about Bart, but at the time Bart was pretty well known as a Wizard guy, so mention of him in Hero is pretty few and far between.
But I decided to take a leap anyway. Issues 7 and 23 both had interviews with Alan Moore, and both of them seemed Violator related. And wouldn't you know it, I turned a page of issue 7 and see this-
Bart Sears Violator Hero Illustrated page 1
Not bad for a stab in the dark. Moore discusses a little bit about his work procedure and Bart is mentioned several times.
As for issue 23, this page is included-
Bart Sears Violator Hero Illustrated page 2
Another result, regardless of how small. Bart isn't mentioned at all in the Moore interview this time, and only Bart's shot of the Clown is actually anything related to him, but its almost worth it for the Rob Liefeld interview, where the interviewer absolutely rips him to shreds.
I also got a few Wizard issues, and boy were they worth getting.
Firstly, issue 3 was another one of those shots in the dark. Bart may have an interview in issue 4, as well as the Wizard mascot being peppered throughout, but I had no idea if Bart was even mentioned in issue 3.
Well, he was.
Firstly, four different Wizard Mascots appear in it, including another one of those Subscription Coupons. But most importantly, this particular mascot appears-
Bart Sears POOF! Running
As previously stated in my post dedicated to the Wizard Mascot , I was under the impression that this particular mascot image went unpublished; that is clearly not the case! Yeah, I was pretty happy with that find. Also mentioned in the magazine is the name of that very mascot, which is, though not entirely PC, 'POOF!' Apparently Gareb Shamus was unaware of the derogatory alternate meaning of the word at the time.
Issue 3 also features this advert on one of the last pages-
Wizard 3 T-Shirt advert
I have absolutely no idea if Bart's Batman cover image for issue 4 (assuming it was indeed that image) ever made it onto one of the T-Shirts, but I've certainly not come across any evidence of it's existence.
Next came issue 5, which I used to own when it first came out, but who knows what happened to it down through the years. I sure wish I had have held on to it because it has some great Bart Sears stuff in it, and at the top of the list is this piece-
Bart Sears POOF! with wand down
Yet another Poof! image I was unaware of! And if you look closely, Bart has even signed the thing, in still another of his many signature variations.
There are a total of 5 Poof's! in the magazine, 2 of which are this one-
Bart Sears POOF! Competition
I know, I know, I had said that this particular Poof! went unpublished as well, but I was obviously wrong in that assumption. But now I, and you, know.
I also got Wizard #11 in the shipment, which has the usual mix of Poof's! scattered throughout, but it also has Bart's second Brute & Babe Tutorial, which just so happened to be the very last tutorial I needed to complete my set of newly laminated tutorials. That's just another thing I can cross off the old Want List, which has been steadily getting smaller and smaller. I now only require issues 9 and 56 of Wizard, both of which are proving tricky to find through my usual sources.
Next out was an actual comic, not a comic magazine. A fresh copy of Mutant X #21 in fact, featuring nine pages of some of the best work Bart has ever done for Marvel, in my opinion. I highly recommend it to those that don't already have it. Those pages have already been put through the laminator.
And finally, I got three issues of The First to replace the ones that I can't seem to find anymore. The issues in question are #'s 6, 12 and 15. If you know you're way around The First, you'll probably pick up that Bart didn't actually do the interior art for any of those issues, Andrea Di Vito did (which would probably explain why I can't find the original copies I had.)
Though Bart didn't do the interior art, he did do the images on the credit pages of issues 6 & 12, shown below-
Bart Sears The First #6 credits pageBart Sears The First #12 credits page
These images, along with all of the other credit page images, first appeared on the CrossGen website even before the first 'First' issue was out, as a sort of 'get to know us' thing. I did print off the images from the website at the time, but the resolution is nowhere near these ones that appeared in the comics, so their good to have.

As for issue 15, I had one of the many letters I had published in The First in it, so I simply had to get it again.
My The First #15 letter
It's no huge claim to fame, by any means, certainly not as big as the Pyrem image I had published in issue 5-
My version of Pyrem
Feel free to laugh as I cringe at it.
For those interested (probably only me), I had a total of 5 letters (all of them praising Bart) and the Pyrem image published in pages of The First, which is probably because I was a pretty vocal fan of the comic at the time, and regularly posted on the CG message boards.

And that was all for the Mile High Comics shipment, which was pretty much par for the course in respect to the other shipments I've gotten recently - some big hits, some swings and misses, but a worthy venture at the end of the day.

My other new delivery arrived on the 22nd of September, and it was my first ever purchase from a place called MyComicShop, who are a pretty good seller, from what I've seen, and they package stuff expertly. I've pretty much exhausted Mile High Comics' inventory of all of the Bart stuff I need, but MyComicShop was thankfully able to fill in a good amount of the holes Mile High Comics couldn't, and at pretty good prices too.
So first off came a few QC issues I needed to relaminate.
Bart Sears Bad Company #1 coverBart Sears Judge Dredd #14 cover
Of all of the 30 covers Bart did for QC/Fleetway, I only require the Scavengers #3 cover to complete their relamination process.
I also got my hands on another Zoom Suit issue-
Bart Sears Zoom Suit #3 Regular cover
This is the regular Bart Sears cover to #3, but there is also a Sketch Edition of this, that I believe is on it's way to me as I write this. The cover is obviously an homage to that famous Superman cover, with a modern twist. I believe the 'Sears Tower' sign in the background was none of Bart's doing, that really isn't the sort of thing he would do (though he has been known to do things kinda similar to this, which will be the feature of another post at a later stage).
After that comes the final Blade cover I needed to complete the set-
Bart Sears Blade Strange Tales #2 Alternate cover
This is the alternate cover to the regular one that Bart did, and is difficult enough to come across now, and is usually more expensive too. I love Mike Atiyeh's colours on this one.
I also polished off my collection of Hero Alliance covers in the new laminating format.
Bart Sears Hero Alliance #9 cover
This cover is interesting in that the signatures suggest that the pencilling chores were shared by both Bart and Ron Lim. I'm not entirely sure which parts Ron Lim did, because to me, it looks to be all Bart.
For those completists out there, Bart did the covers to issues #1, 2, 6 & 9 of the regular Hero Alliance series.
Next up was Justice league Europe #29.
Bart Sears JLE #29 cover
This is another interesting cover in that although it is definitely done by Bart, his signature is nowhere to be seen. He is listed as the cover penciller and inker on the back credits page though. It is also interesting because Bart is listed as the interior artist on the cover, of which he is in actual fact not, Darick Robertson does the pencilling on the interior.
This cover marks Bart's final work for the title that made him famous.
Those 6 previous items mark the end of the comics I knew Bart did in this shipment, but I had a few more comics to come that were questionable.
As regular readers may be aware, I've been searching for that pesky Caliban Handbook image for quite some time now, to absolutely no avail. But the next possible source arrived in this shipment.
All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #2 cover
This comic was released in April 2006, At least 10 years after the original image was drawn, but wouldn't you know...
Bart Sears Caliban image
I think I giggled a little bit when I saw that picture. I'm not entirely certain that this is the first place this image was shown, but I believe it is. So for now, unless I find it anywhere else, the search is over. Sigh.
The next piece still has a huge question mark over it. I'd read somewhere a while ago that Bart did this particular cover-
Solar Man of the Atom TPB cover
Obviously, they meant that Bart did the Solar hand on the right, not Michelangelo's 'Creation of Adam.' After checking through the whole comic, credit pages and all, not only is Bart not listed anywhere, but nobody has been credited as the cover artist at all. I'm not so sure if Bart did it, to be honest, the hand certainly has a Bart Sears feel to it, but it also has a Michelangelo feel to it too, some of the outline is almost a mirror of Adam's outstretched arm. So Bart, let me know if you know anything about this and I'll update this section with whatever you can tell me.
NOTE: To quote Bart, "Nope had nada to do with that Solar cover..." Say no more.
Another item that I'd read/half guessed would have some Bart art in it is was this badboy-
The Dark Convention Book #2
As you can see, Bart is listed on the cover. The book is basically a pin-up gallery of The Dark images, in black and white, and on page 30 is this pin-up -
Bart Sears The Dark Convention Book #2 pin-up
I swear, this image is the most reproduced image of Bart's I know. Let's list it's appearances shall we?
1. Bart's B&B Tutorial in Wizard #22 has it shown in b&w
2. The Dark Regular cover
3. The Dark Red chrome cover
4. The Dark Blue chrome cover
5. The Dark Convention book
6. The Dark Phonecard. Of which only 500 were made, and I have three!

Lastly, I got the obligatory couple of Wizard magazines, this time issues 54 & 100.
Wizard #54 starts off pretty nicely for a Bart Sears fan like myself.
Bart Sears Wizard #54 cover
It keeps on going from there because part of that same cover is reprinted on the contents page, Gareb Shamus talks about it on his Letter page, and then we come to the 'More Picks' section on page 117, which has a quick review of X-O Manowar #63-64, and has this image shown-
Bart Sears X-O unused finished
Sorry about the quality, its a small image. Anyway, this is listed as the cover for X-O #63, which turns out not to be the case. In fact, this image doesn't appear on any X-O cover as far as I know, and as far as I know, doesn't appear anywhere but right there!
Here are the pencils for the piece for those interested.
Bart Sears X-O unused pencils
There is also a great picture of Bart and Andy Smith on the Creator Abbreviations page, that is worth putting up here I think.
Wizard #54 Andy Smith & Bart Sears photo
Lastly, and I mean lastly, on the final page is this-
Bart Sears Wizard #54 Profile
There is some good information on Bart's early life in it, which I elaborated on when I was running the Bart Sears Fan Club all those years ago.
Wizard #100 is not quite the anniversary issue I envisioned it would be, in fact, apart from the poster that came with the magazine when bagged (I got an unbagged copy), showing all 100 covers (I will be getting that hopefully soon), and a few bits here and there, it is barely indistinguishable from a normal issue. At the back, in the price guide section, there are some unused covers shown, and several of Bart's are shown, but the image sizes are tiny compared those shown in Wizard #29.
The only other places anything Bart related are mentioned are on the Top 100 ordered titles for October 1999, where Spider-Woman #6 came in at number 65.
There is also a page that lists prominent artists and writers and how much each one's signature is worth, Bart comes in at a whopping $3!
And finally, this tiny little article at the bottom of page 120 appeared.
Bart Sears Wizard #100 Tidbit
I don't know how "long-standing" Greg Capullo's tutorials were, but Bart did a total of 31 tutorials between issues 1 and 100, and they started at issue 10!
And that's it! Well, nearly it. These two deliveries, and the previous Mile high Comics delivery, all had 1 item each that was incorrectly delivered. By that I mean, for instance, I ordered a particular comic, and a different but easily mistaken issue was delivered instead. The two Mile High corrected issues are on their way, and the MyComicShop one will be soon, so I'll put them up here when they arrive.
But for now, that's me finished in the way of deliveries, for the foreseeable future anyway. Which means that I can do some posts on things other than what arrived in the mail, and concentrate on some other aspects of Bart's work. I have a few ideas in mind, including a proper look at Bart's Action figure work, a statistical study of his career and a look at some of Bart's Kubert School work.
So come back soon!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Guess what the Postman delivered today? #9

A couple of weeks ago, Bart Sears fan Chip Carey contacted me to let me know that he is selling a lot of his artwork to raise some funds for a few upcoming projects. He said he wanted to give me the first chance to buy any of the pieces he was selling, which was rather kind of him, I thought. I've never, despite my best efforts, been one to have a lot of disposable income, and I have many times had to pass up on Bart Sears items due to the fact that I couldn't afford them, and I honestly thought that this was going to be another one of those occasions.
Which was a situation I really didn't want to happen this particular time, as Chip has some great Bart Sears stuff, including a couple of very nice Ominous Press items. One of the items that Chip offered to me was the Insidious page from It Begins, an item I had previously passed up several years ago when it was on sale.
But, perhaps coincidentally, perhaps something more, that same week saw me receive an email from a gentleman interested in a piece I myself owned drawn by Bart.
The page in question is this one -
Bart Sears Spider-Woman #13 pages 2-3
This was a page that Bart threw in with the first piece of Bart Sears art I ever owned, Mael's Rage page 1. So I've always kinda looked on it as a gift from Bart, not something I would disregard or undervalue, both monetarily or personally.

So I had a tough choice to make, that's for sure. Do I keep the page that Bart gave to me, or do I swap it for an Ominous Press published page?

Well, this arrived on my doorstep this morning.
Bart Sears It Begins page 15
(Forgive the scan, I will be replacing it with a higher resolution one soon)

In the end, I went for the Ominous Press page (after apologising to Bart). I had the guy that wanted the Spider-Woman page pay Chip directly, who sent out the Insidious page to me at the same time as I sent out the Spider-Woman page to the other guy, kind of like a three-way pass the parcel.
After staring at the page for a solid half hour, I've popped it in it's new home which it'll be sharing with it's fellow Ominous Press pages. I pull them out often to look at them again and to give them a bit of fresh air, and to realize how lucky I am to own each and every page that I do.

Something I've wanted to do for a while, and sort of did do a few years ago, is to compile a list of all of the Ominous Press published comic work and who owns each page. It never got completely filled the first time, but I thought I might give it another go here, so if you own any of the pages listed below, let me know and I'll add you to the list.

Updated 21/9/09

It Begins
Cover -
Page 1 - Steve Tompkins
Page 2 - Jay Penn
Page 3 -
Page 4 - Jay Penn
Page 5 -
Page 6 - Jay Penn
Page 7 - Jay Penn
Page 8 -
Page 9 -
Page 10 -
Page 11 -
Page 12 -
Page 13 -
Page 14 -
Page 15 - Jay Penn
Page 16 - Frederic Massa

Mael's Rage
Cover -
Page 1 - Jay Penn
Page 2 -
Page 3 -
Page 4 -
Page 5 -
Page 6 -
Page 7 - Jay Penn
Page 8 -
Page 9 -
Page 10 -
Page 11 -
Page 12 -
Page 13 -
Page 14 -
Page 15 -
Page 16 -
Page 17 -

Pheros - The Last Straw
Page 1 - Andy Smith
Page 2 -
Page 3 - Jay Penn
Page 4 -
Page 5 -
Page 6 - Jay Penn
Page 7 -

Cover -
Page 1 - Steve Tompkins
Page 2 -
Page 3 -
Page 4 -
Page 5 - Jay Penn
Page 6 -
Page 7 -
Page 8 -
Page 9 - Jay Penn
Page 10 -
Page 11 -
Page 12 - Jay Penn
Page 13 - Jay Penn
Page 14 - Jay Penn
Page 15 - Jay Penn
Viere Pin-Up - Mike Borkowski

Thanks in advance to all that contributed information, and thanks most to Chip for the transaction, you're a champ!

Friday, September 18, 2009

My Favourite Piece of Bart Sears Art.

This is a post I've been meaning to get around to doing for a long time now, even before this blog existed. About three years ago, in fact, I wrote a huge article on my single most favourite piece of Bart Sears art, and perhaps suprisingly enough, it isn't an Ominous Press piece! Sure, those three Ominous Press comics are by far my favourite Bart Sears comics, but when it comes to picking a single piece of Bart Sears art, be it a cover, a card, a poster, a comic page, to my mind at least, there can be no going past Bart's cover to Cremator #1.
In my original article, I waffled on about lighting, focal points and all sorts of criterion to drive home my point. I even equated the cover to some fantastic David Gemmell scene!
But to spare you the chore of wading through my entirely unnecessary pontification, I, here, will give you the watered down version of that original article.

Firstly, a bit of history.
I still quite clearly recall the day I was paying a visit to my favourite comic shop back in Melbourne, favourite because they had the best range of back issues and they let you open the bags. I was browsing away, not a care in the world, when I saw a poster on the wall that I'd never seen before. It was advertising the new Cremator series by Chaos Comics, and listed that Bart did a variant cover.
Bart Sears Cremator Poster
So I went and checked the shelves, nothing there; the back issues, nothing there. It would be another year before I chanced upon that variant issue at a collector's fair, some time late in 1999.
Bart Sears Cremator cover
Pretty cool, huh? I'm glad you agree.
There's just something about the way the anatomy is drawn, showing both sides of the arm in all of it's Searsian glory, coupled with fantastic weaponry, lots of severed heads and the fact that while the character is pin-cussioned with arrows, he ain't done yet, he's ready for more.
So this cover almost instantly became my favourite piece of Bart's, but nothing really could prepare me for what I found at Bart's place the second time I visited him in Florida.
In a box, hidden away amongst other sheets of paper, were 6 pages of thumbnails and roughs for none other than that Cremator cover.
First off, the thumbnails, which are a really interesting study of how to go about developing an idea. You can kind of map Bart's process of honing in on what he likes and discarding what he didn't, though I'd like to see him finish all of those thumbs.

Bart Sears Cremator thumbs
So, it looks like Bart preffered two of the thumbs, both the sixth and the third last, which he then expanded into larger roughs. Shown here as images 1, 2 & 3. Somewhere about that time he must have discarded those ideas, and gone for the fourth rough, which is quite close to the final cover.

Bart Sears Cremator roughs

I've mentioned to Bart my love of this piece, regarding it as my favourite, and he has told me that he personally doesn't see it. Not to say that he doesn't like it, I just think he prefers other stuff. But he's clearly wrong, so...
Anyway, I naturally purchased those 6 pages off Bart, and they are some of my most prized posessions. I have seen the final artwork on ComicArtFans, and I hope to eventually own it one day myself. But I'm content with what I've got for the moment.

Incidentally, I have received another shipment of comics from Mile High Comics this week, as soon as I have everything scanned and cleaned, I'll write a post for it, its a good one too.
Talk to you then.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Bart Sears Trading Cards #1

One section of the vast Bart Sears collectible library that I feel warrants a much needed closer look on this blog is Trading Cards featuring the art of Bart Sears.

By my reckoning, there are a total of 68 Trading cards featuring Bart's art, most of which are from the early to mid-90's, back when it seemed every man and his dog had a card set out. This may not be the actual total amount of cards featuring his work, I still have a few to track down, including that pesky 'The Mask' card, which I still to this day do not know for sure if it exists.
While Bart never managed to get around to having his own card set (oh, what a dream!), he did contribute to a fairly diverse range of card sets. Many of the cards featuring his art actually take previous artwork from other places, be they the Conan 2 cards that reprint Bart's first portfolio, to the most recent cards, for Zoom Suit, which reprint Bart's cover for the comic of the same title.

So join me as we take a stroll through the Bart Sears Trading Card Gallery.
Many of the images I put up on this Blog are done so with the express intent of showing all of you that look here some of Bart's lesser known work. Sure, it looks like I'm showing off, but it really is a case of me wanting to share with you all some of the great, if not well known, art Bart has produced over the years.
And this first set of cards is no exception.
I got my hands on the 'Marvel Premium X-Men Timelines '97' set of cards on the 19th of January, 2000. One of the first things I noticed was that none of the cards had the artists responsible credited anywhere on the cards that I could see. This is going against the grain somewhat, as all other cards of the same ilk always used this practice. The only other noticeable one not to being the Marvel Overpower cards. So anyway, usually this would not be a problem, as I can normally spot an authentic Bart Sears piece a mile away. And this was certainly the case with the 5 cards that were indeed created by Bart. But I initially had something like 8 cards picked out as possibly being done by Bart. There were a few cards that I just didn't know if Bart did, all of them being part of the Techno-Wonders sub-set that the cards I definitely knew Bart did were part of.
As it turned, those extra couple of cards were not done by Bart, as confirmed by him later, and the number of cards actually done by him for this set is 5, the 5 I knew for sure he did initially.
And here they are-
Bart Sears X-Men Timelines cards final
I know, I know, they don't quite look like Bart's work. Some of the colouring is a bit funky in places, but rest assured, they are definitely by Bart. Well, the pencils are anyway-
Bart Sears X-Men Timelines cards pencils
If you look closely at the pencils in relation to the final cards, you may spot a few 'alterations.' Most obviously is the Rama-Tut card, where the final card has the figure much enlarged. But perhaps more interestingly is the Black Knight card, where the final artwork has removed the sword from his right hand and put it in his left.
Another cool card set, that is rather tough to track down these days, is the DC Stars set sold exclusively through Walmart back in 1994. Basically, these cards were taken directly from the DC 1992 Series 1 card set, with the images resized and that unapologetically early '90's border added.
Bart Sears DC Stars cards
Although Bart produced artwork for 7 cards from the original set, only these three characters from those 7 were reprinted in the Walmart set, which was only a set of 44 cards, 1 checklist and some promo and chase cards, whilst the original set was much larger.
The final card I'll share with you today is Bart's only card for the 'Dark Horse: Comics Greatest World' set.
Here it is-
I mentioned that it is Bart's only card from the set because, interestingly enough, this card image made it onto one of the packaging wrappers for the cards. This is interesting because this is the only time Bart's art has appeared on a card wrapper.
This is just the first step into the Bart Sears Trading Card Gallery, there are plenty of nooks and crannies to discover yet. So check back soon for more Bart Sears Trading Cards and insight into them.
See you all soon.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Guess what the Postman delivered today? #8

Why, its another batch of comics from my favourite online comic emporium, Mile High Comics!
In keeping with my current desire to track down some loose ends by purchasing possible sources of Bart Sears work, this shipment was another one of those times when there were unfortunately more misses than hits.

As a for instance, you may recall that I recently purchased several issues of Image Comics Prophet Vol. 1, to no avail. Well, I went back to the well and ordered the first four issues of Volume 2, in the hope that the elusive Prophet pin-up might appear in one of them. And that's strike 2! But fear not, the well is not dry yet. There is still the Prophet TPB to account for, which I'll try and get my hands on soon.

Another leap into the unknown (last metaphor, I promise) was the Wizard Special Edition from back in 1992.

Bart Sears Wizard Special Edition cover

This is another item I owned once upon a time, but lost it or turfed it along the way somewhere. Apart from the cool fold-out cover, I vaguely recalled Bart being mentioned in it, and wouldn't you know?

Bart Sears Wizard Special Edition bio
Bart Sears Wizard Special Edition article
It felt good to win one for a change.

I also picked up a copy of the Zoom Suit #2 Sketch Edition.
Bart Sears Zoom Suit #2 Sketch Edition cover
As you can see on the cover, it is limited to 1500 copies, and I'm glad to finally own one of those. But that's not all there is to this cover -
Bart Sears Zoom Suit random 'S'
If you look closely, there's a randomly placed 'S' just hovering there.
I thought it was funny.

I also got my hands on the three Will To Power covers Bart did. I already own these issues, but they need to be re-laminated and will get that treatment soon.
Bart Sears Will To Power covers
These covers are interesting in a few ways.

Firstly, Bart has signed each cover as 'SEARSS' -
Bart Sears Will To Power signatures
Bart has often played around with his Signature, but I'm yet to find out why he signed these ones with two S's at the end. (Bart?) NOTE: Bart has since informed me that "I used the 'double S' to denote work that was Sears Studio work." Thanks Bart.

Secondly, Bart's original art for the second cover featured the character 'X' in the bottom right of the page, but was removed by the time the issue was printed. Again, I'm not sure why.
Bart Sears Will To Power X

But definitely the pick of this particular litter is this rather impressive item -

Bart Sears Wizard B&B Infinity Limited Edition
I must confess to not knowing about this item until I saw it on Mile High Comics a few weeks ago, which is ridiculous, really, I mean, how the HELL did I not know about the existence of this Ominous Press comic? Appauling...
It has since been added to the Bart Sears Checklist, which has stretched out to 280 individual comics now.
So what's different about this 'Limited Edition' as opposed to the regular edition? Well, apart from it saying 'Wizard Limited Edition 1995' on the cover in stamped gold... nothing at all. Still, that's the sort of item that I simply had to own, no question about it.
I've got another Mile High Comics shipment arriving next week (hopefully) and I'll post more then.