Posts tagged: Poison Ivy

Title Pages: The Batman Strikes #18

It’s time for another installment of Title Pages, featuring another title page from my run on The Batman Strikes! which was a tie-in comic for The Batman animated TV series. A Title Page is the page which features the story title and credits for the issue, and is often (but not always) a Splash Page, which is a full-page image, rather than a page broken up into multiple panels.

In The Batman Strikes! #17, Chief Angel Rojas was still the top cop in Gotham City. By issue #18, Police Commissioner James Gordon has arrived on the scene, and with him his daughter Barbara Gordon, aka Batgirl!

Strikes #18 - pg 01 prev Batman_Strikes_18_Oroboros_ 002


Again the title page was page 2, so here’s the set up on page 1, where Commissioner GordonĀ  is working late an checking on the whereabouts of his daughter, who happens to be dealing out justice (with the help of a handy push broom) to some low-level street thugs trying to rip off a 24-hour laundromat. I’ve always seen Gordon as very blue-color and overworked, so I enjoyed drawing him illuminated only by his desk lamp in a darkened office. Seeing his name reversed and backlit in the window of his office door was another fun touch. The Gotham City Map seen on the finished page was not rendered by me, but was an existing map of Gotham I found online, and I sized and angled it to fit into the artwork and provided it separately to inker Terry Beatty for him to paste into place once the original art was inked. Note that we’re showing Batgirl on her cell phone here, but saving a good look at her for the big reveal on the next page.

Strikes #18 - pg 02 prev Batman_Strikes_18_Oroboros_ 003


So here’s the title page and our reveal of Batgirl as she doesn’t let being outnumbered intimidate her in the slightest, even in these early days of her crime-fighting career. If you compare the pencils to the finished page, you can see that she disappears into her cape a little bit. This was again due to the dark, saturated colors in combination with the cheaper paper used on this series as I’ve lamented about before. Consider it part of my ongoing crusade for DC to make digital editions of all the issues of this series available. So far they’ve only released the first three issues digitally!

While not appearing in this scene, the villain of the issue was Poison Ivy, and given the title of the story, I tried to give the title logo a decorative, floral approach. I like how it turned out.

I’ll have more installments of Title Pages soon, but until then you can check out previous installments! As always, questions and comments are welcome!

Happy Halloween semi-decapitation!

CHOK!

CHOK!

I was always a little surprised that we got away with that one in a Johnny DC title. Granted, it’s a plant simulacrum of Poison Ivy and not the real flesh and blood original, but STILL!

Here’s the full page for context from The Batman Strikes #33:

Strikes #33 pg 02 color

Strikes #33 pg 02 color

Inks by Terry Beatty. Colors by Heroic Age Studio.

Title Pages: Batman Strikes 18 & 33

Whenever possible, I always preferred hand-drawing my own sound effects and story titles during my run on The Batman Strikes! I especially liked incorporating the logo into the background art in some way, probably because of all those great Will Eisner titles for The Spirit. But I always had to work with what I was given. Sometimes I didn’t have a lot of room. Sometimes the story title didn’t lend itself as well to graphic treatment. But it almost always was more pleaseing to my eye than having it left to be typeset by the letterer.

Let’s kick this off with a pair of logos from Poison Ivy stories (boy we had a lot of Poison Ivy stories on The Batman Strikes!).

First up, from Batman Strikes #18:

Batman Strikes #18 - Title Logo

Batman Strikes #18 - Title Logo

Here’s an example of a title that lent itself to graphic treatment nicely, but as part of a 4-panel page there wasn’t much room to work it into the background art. Still, I was able to give the title something of a flowery flourish, and that was fun.

Strikes #18 Title Page pencils

Strikes #18 Title Page pencils

Strikes #18 Title Page color

Strikes #18 Title Page color

Here’s a view of the full page, so you can see how the logo works in context. Inks are by Terry Beatty and colors are by Heroic Age. Which I guess you could read for yourself in the credits if you click on the image to see it full-size!

Strikes #33 - logo

Strikes #33 - logo

In The Batman Strikes #33 we had the reverse scenario: A big splashy full page shot, but kind of a simple title. I opted to just create really organic character shapes and try to make it look as though it were wrapped around the side of this giant vine structure.

Strikes #33 Title Page pencils

Strikes #33 Title Page pencils

Strikes #33 Title Page color

Strikes #33 Title Page color

I was quite happy with this page overall. BTW – those are plant simulacrums of Poison Ivy that Batman, Robin and Batgirl are fighting. I like the dizzying quality to this shot, and the way the vine wraps through the image. The credits were colored a bit darkly, but I suppose no-one really cared except for the seven people who’s names are listed there!

More to come, stay tuned!