Comic Book Cover, Star Trek. DC Comics. Brush and ink. It was my intent to move the Star Trek comics away from the standardized comic-book look, and more toward the movie poster, bookjacket design style. Though this meant portraying far less dynamic action, I felt they would stand out more as designed art. Plus, it made Paramount happy. lol Nuff said.
* I must acknowledge the works of the late, great artist, Robert Peake as a major influence in the style and design direction of this illustration. His art for the Star Trek feature film one-sheet posters remain an inspiration.
Oh! I need to relate this story!
I was so late on this cover that my editor reassigned it right from under me with no notification. The problem for me was that I was sick and tired of inkers butchering my pencil art. The technique I was now using to render the realistic likenesses of the Trek crew was very delicate cross-hatch texture, and the last straw was when an inker (who I shall not name) just scratched ink all over one of my pieces, and used a dead line-screen for the rest. I was LIVID! I promised myself I would NEVER let that happen again, especially not with THIS cover, my first chance to illustrate the vintage Trek crew in all their television glory! So I mustered up the courage to ink my own work. THIS-- represents the very first time my own inked work was ever published, and I'm very proud of it.
I sent it in late, and didn't hear from my editor at all. Days went by, and I finally called him. He was blasé. He said that the cover was fine, and that although he had commissioned another, he was replacing that one with mine. THANKS for telling me! They gave me a standard cover rate. My editor had also sent a pay voucher through without my knowledge OR signature.
But the bottom line for me was that I had proven to myself that I could do it. I have never looked back. I've inked virtually all my own work since, and have gone on to ink and be requested to ink other artists. Ironically, this cover was the "bottom line" for DC's Star Trek as well. Their license had expired with this issue, and it wasn't to be renewed until years later. Paramount had not had the best relationship with DC Comics, and they didn't appreciate the addition of all-new characters, and the drastic dip in story quality and art.
When things started up again, I was informed that Paramount wanted certain assurances from DC, and my participation was one of them. I was deeply honored. And the rest is history! LOL!