Comic Art Friday: The best of 2009, day six

The penultimate edition of our week-long saunter through the past year of comic art collecting brings us to a pair of pieces commissioned at WonderCon 2009. Neither of these falls specifically into any of my usual themes, but they both feature fantastic renderings of characters I know and love. I couldn’t choose one over the other, so we’ll showcase both today.

Favorite Solo Commission, Non-Theme Division (tie):
Blue Beetle

Pencils and inks by Thomas Hodges

Blue Beetle III (Jaime Reyes), pencils and inks by comics artist Thomas Hodges

I’d wanted for some time to see Star Wars artist Hodges’s take on the current Blue Beetle, mostly because I see strong similarities between Tom’s style and that of Cully Hamner, who designed Jaime Reyes’s scarab armor. Tom kicked the concept up a notch by illustrating the Beetle on bold blue art paper.

Favorite Solo Commission, Non-Theme Division (tie):
The Rocketeer

Pencils and inks by Aaron Lopresti

The Rocketeer, pencils and inks by comics artist Aaron Lopresti

Current Wonder Woman (and former Ms. Marvel) artist Lopresti wanted to apply his skills to a male character this time around, so I asked him to tackle Dave Stevens’s Rocketeer. Aaron’s iconic pinup deserves a place alongside the newly released hardcover collection of Stevens’s work.

Tomorrow, we’ll ring out the old year and look ahead to the new, with our last two splendiferous additions to 2009’s greatest and highest. You’ll want to be sure to stop by.

And that’s your sixth chapter of Comic Art Year-End, 2009.

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