This is an illustration of a Dugong for this week’s Animal Alphabets art challenge. The Dugong is a hard animal to draw because it can look so different depending on what angle you want to pick. I went through a few different angles before finding a photo of a porpoise that I used as the basis for this drawing. I had to modify a few features & shapes since porpoises have some significant differences from Dugongs, but hopefully I captured the essence of a Dugong with this illustration.

Arnold Drake: A Galaxy of Comic Creations

Photo: Arnold Drake at the New York Comic-Con in 2006. Photo credit: Edward Liu/toonzone.net

The highly anticipated sequel to the film “Guardians of the Galaxy” arrives in theaters this year, but you may not know that one of the co-creators of the comic-book team, writer Arnold Drake (1924-2007), was at one time a University of Missouri student. Drake came to the college under unusual circumstances though. Continue reading

Blue Whale

An illustration of a Blue Whale for this week’s Animal Alphabets art challenge. Originally started this one out with a diver shining a light on the whale, but I decided to take the diver out of the picture. I liked how the diver turned out, but it just seemed to add complexity to the illustration that was unnecessary. I might try to keep the focus of these illustrations on the animals in their natural environment if I can, but we’ll see how it goes.

Asiatic Black Bear

This is an Asiatic Black Bear, who is in danger of extinction due to hunting and habitat loss. I drew this bear because I’ve joined up with the Animal Alphabets art challenge on twitter this week. The people who run the official Animal Alphabets twitter account give artists a specific animal to draw each week, and the artists post their work on Mondays at 19:30 GMT. The animals name corresponds to each letter of the alphabet, so at the end of the exercise I should have 26 animals to show.

This challenge has been around for about three rounds at this point, with various sub-themes for each round. The first was just animals in general, the second focused on fictional animals, and the third strayed from the “animal” concept a bit to incorporate fairy-tale characters. I was a bit nervous of what the theme would be for this round, but happily it’s endangered animals. I love making illustrations that have an educational component to them, so this is right up my alley.

2015 Inktober Challenge

oneI took part in the Inktober challenge this October, creating 31 inked illustrations in 31 days and posting them online. My Inktober 2015 theme: Paying tribute to Bill Finger Award winning comic creators & their characters. The award, which honors the memory of Batman co-creator Bill Finger, recognizes comic book writers who have not received their rightful reward and/or recognition. For the project I created 23 character illustrations and a comic illustrating part of a letter written by Bill Finger.

Here’s the 23 character illustrations I worked on during the weekdays:

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Miss Mizzou Book — Year One

Miss Mizzou is the cover story in the fall 2015 issue of MIZZOU Magazine.

A lot of interesting things have happened with my book Miss Mizzou: A Life Beyond Comicsthis last year. There has been a lot of press for the book, I’ve made a few appearances, and there was also a Miss Mizzou exhibit up locally as well. In September 2015 I wrapped up a full year of blogging about the character, and you can check out the blog highlights here. The response to the book has been really positive–thanks to everyone for their support!

NEW BOOK — Miss Mizzou: A Life Beyond Comics

A narrative nonfiction book by J.B. Winter:
“Miss Mizzou: A Life Beyond Comics”

buy1About the book: After a brief 24 hour visit to the small college town of Columbia, Missouri, the cartoonist Milton Caniff was inspired to create an iconic blonde wearing a trench coat: Miss Mizzou! Her adventures in the Steve Canyon comic strip turned Columbia on its ear, inspiring various promotional tie-ins during the 1950s and 1960s. Some of these promotions were celebrated with fervor, while others created controversy that resulted in national headlines. Now you can read about the forgotten history of this character and see the exciting life she lived beyond the comic page. Continue reading