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Journal Entry: Wed Jun 11, 2014, 12:14 PM
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Hey folks!

   I'm officially recovered form an INSANE weekend at Phoenix Comicon. Thanks to all who came out to the show and made it a memorable experience!

   I've also updated the online store with the Poison Ivy and Gwen Stacy Prints as well as the new 2014 BLUELINE PROvocative sketchbook. I was going to discontinue some prints and the 2011 sketchbook but there still seems to be demand for those little suckers so I'm restocking those as well. My website is currently down for maintenance, trying to correct the problem some of you have had accessing the site, so to make a purchase you'll have to go directly to my Storenvy site: mikedebalfo.storenvy.com mikedebalfo.storenvy.com/

   All orders will ship at the beginning of July.  I have quite a work load on my plate these next two weeks before I attend the Amazing Las Vegas Comic Con from June 21st-22nd. Any of you going to that show? Then, when I get home, I have an important personal matter to take care of that will have me out of touch for about a week so I'm taking orders early to lighten the load of packing up orders at the end of the month.

Thank you all in advance!

Poison Ivy by SquirrelShaver Gwen Stacy by SquirrelShaver Blueline Provocative: 2014 Sketchbook by SquirrelShaver

Commissions and Online Store Open!

Journal Entry: Mon Mar 17, 2014, 12:20 PM
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  At long last I FINALLY have the Supergirl "Bunny" prints up online for purchase! There's only a handful left before they're gone for good, but I've also restocked sketchbooks and other 11"x17" prints that were out of stock until now.

  On top of that I have two commission slots open. Single character, 11x17, "cover quality" pencils. $500 (plus shipping). Drop me an email if you're interested: mike@mikedebalfo.com.

*ONLINE STORE LINK: WWW.MIKEDEBALFO.SOTRENVY.COM www.mikedebalfo.storenvy.com

PRINTS: New 52? by SquirrelShaver Harley Quinn by SquirrelShaver Lady Mechanika by SquirrelShaver Savage Land Rogue by SquirrelShaver Mary Jane by SquirrelShaver
SKETCHBOOKS: 2011 Sketchbook Cover by SquirrelShaver Hot Lead 2012 Sketchbook by SquirrelShaver

Best,
mIKE d.

50% Off Clearance Sale!

Journal Entry: Fri Aug 23, 2013, 12:15 PM
  • Mood: Content
  • Listening to: Lamb Of God
  • Reading: TMNT
  • Watching: Fairly Odd Parents
  • Eating: Microscopic Atoms
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Hey folks!

   I'm hosting a 50% clearance sale on my online store from today until August 30th. Use promo code #91713 during checkout and get half off any order of $20 or more! This promo code does NOT apply to original art posted on the store but prices have been slashed there as well.

Mike DeBalfo Online Store ----> mikedebalfo.storenvy.com/

Best,
mIKE

Costume Maker Needed

Journal Entry: Tue Aug 13, 2013, 9:49 PM
  • Mood: Content
  • Listening to: Lamb Of God
  • Reading: TMNT
  • Watching: Fairly Odd Parents
  • Eating: Microscopic Atoms
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Greetings Ladies & Gents,

   Just like the title says; I'm looking for a costume maker to help me with an upcoming project. Any costume artists/cosplayers out there looking for work? Hit me up!

mIKE

San Diego Comicon (Let's do this!)

Journal Entry: Tue Jul 16, 2013, 2:35 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Lamb Of God
  • Reading: TMNT
  • Watching: Fairly Odd Parents
  • Eating: Microscopic Atoms
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Greetings boys & girls!

   Once again I apologize for my lack of communication here on good 'ol Deviantart so thank you all very much for sticking around and tolerating my shit. To say the least, life has been a bit on the haywire side of orderly over the last several weeks/months with work, my wife being pregnant and SDCC creeping it's disruptive head into the stream of things. Once SDCC is wrapped up I'll be focusing a large majority of my time on finishing my Soulfire run then in September the baby us due, and starting in October I'll be jumping face first into some more pinup related projects and hopefully start assembling a catalog of usable art to help produce a sketchbook for 2014 since I won't have a new one out before the end of this year. Sorry, guys, I know a lot of you have been asking for a new one but I just don't have enough unseen material for a new book right now. I'd much rather give you the most bang for your buck with all new unseen artwork rather than a book compiled of images which you've seen a hundred times on the internet.

   Anywho, San Diego Comicon is this week and, YES, I will be in attendance all weekend. Same as last year I will be chilling with the Aspen Comics peeps at booth #2321 virtually all weekend--I think I have a one hour break from signing each day so chances are slim that you'll miss me.  In tow I will have prints, sketchbooks, a few T-shirts, original art and will be doing a select number of sketches each day for $60. I also did a new exclusive cover for the Aspen Swimsuit issue that will be available and Aspen plans to release news of a new company project that I will be closely tied to so be sure to attend the "10 Years of Aspen Comics" panel on Friday to find out about that.

   I'm sure that there's a ton of info I'm forgetting to mention right now, but below is my full signing schedule for the weekend.

ASPEN COMICS BOOTH #2321

Thursday:
- 11:00-12:30
- 2:00-3:30
- 4:00-5:00

Friday:
- 10:30-11:30
- 12:00-1:00 (10 Years of Aspen Comics Panel)
- 2:00-3:00
- 4:30-6:00

Saturday:
- 11:00-12:30
- 2:00-3:00
- 4:30-6:00

Sunday:
-11:00-12:30

Best,
mIKE d.
  

The Name Of Nature

Journal Entry: Wed Jun 5, 2013, 4:03 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Bullet For My Valentine
  • Watching: Adventure Time
  • Eating: Air
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I'm feeling a bit Emo today after receiving news a couple months back that a dear childhood friend of mine committed suicide and then this morning that a more recent friend of mine passed away last night, before her due time, leaving behind four children. I posted this on my Facebook page, but I feel that DA is really a more fitting environment for such a rant. Agree, disagree or agree to disagree. This is just part of my particular view on the subject of life and love.

  Sometimes we under appreciate the people we once cared so deeply for. The people who once made us so euphorically happy with minimal effort, the ones who delivered you the most genuine smiles and sincerest adoration are not a guarantee. It's scarey how simple it is to take for granted the threaded of moments life. Before you know it, the fabric of love and life have run out. Once the spinning wheel abruptly stops, all the tears in the world can never give it precious momentum again nor can all the money or gold ever buy an extended manufacturers warrantee.

  Life has a funny way of subtly changing who we are. As time sails by we become considerably different people than we were perhaps a year ago, and we don't even notice it happening. Sadly, we often get caught up in the routine day-to-day and sometimes let ourselves drift from what made us so proud in the first place. It seems far too easy these days to gravitate towards a seemingly more soothing light. A prospective change for the better too jaded to realize that it's little more than just a distraction from what we didn't want tend to yesterday. I can't help but believe that we've become such a throw-away society, where nothing is fixable, that it's how we also treat people and relationships. Once considered broken it seems not even worth pulling the situation apart to find what went wrong or acquire the intestinal fortitude needed to get our hands dirty while fixing it. We just run to the nearest store to buy a replacement because, well, the packaging looks attractive so why not.

  Please don't let your life be based on memories of what you once had or chasing a greener field. Dedicate your life to cherishing what you've worked so very hard to maintain and pride yourself on that which you have bled to keep. Base your strongest efforts not on yourself or your career but instead on your children. Life has no rules and never plays favorites. The warmest hug, the sweet simple gestures of kindness or just the way this person looks on in light of sunny afternoon can easily be snatched away in the name of nature. We're all here on borrowed time so make sure to let your loved ones know that you care enough to work for them.

Best,
mIKE d.

3D Modeler Wanted!

Journal Entry: Wed May 8, 2013, 6:00 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Bullet For My Valentine
  • Watching: Adventure Time
  • Eating: Air
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Hey Gang!

  This journal entry is in regards to me looking to hire a digital 3D modeler for a project that I'd like to dip my toes in. Particularly I'm looking for a 3D artist who's skilled in modeling women of course. This IS a paying gig and no professional experience is needed so long as you/the 3D artist can commit and follow through with the short term assignment.  

  As much as I'd love to indulge more I really can't spill too many beans on what it's all about yet. As you know, plans often fall through in the art world and things sometimes don't pan out to a finished anything.

  If you're interested please send me an email with samples of your work to: mike@mikedebalfo.com

All the best,
mIKE d.

Black Friday Print Sale!

Journal Entry: Tue Nov 20, 2012, 1:40 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Billy Joel
  • Drinking: Water
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Howdy folks!

   We've decided to jump on the bandwagon and follow through with a blow-out sale on my website store www.mikedebalfo.storenvy.com/ for two reasons:

A.) Give folks a chance to score some merch at a sweet price and B.) Make room for new inventory for the coming new year.

From Friday November, 23rd through Monday November, 26th ALL art prints and comic books on my web store will be 50% off their normal price (shipping costs still apply at normal rates).

My website is down for the moment do to an issue with my web server billing my account, but you can still access the online store via:
- My Facebook page: :facebook: [link]  (Click on the "Store" link in the tool bar below the cover image)

- You can shoot directly to my Storenvy.com page: www.mikedebalfo.storenvy.com/

Many thanks to you all in advance!

Best,
mIKE d.
www.mikedebalfo.com

Original Art for Sale

Journal Entry: Sun Oct 14, 2012, 7:33 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Billy Joel
  • Drinking: Water
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Hello all!

   First I'd like to apologize for not being as regular as I used to/should be. I always thought that leaving the day job and finally doing art full time would allow me *more* time to post and chat but alas the truth is proving to be just the opposite. It's fun to be delusional. ;) Soulfire is going great though, wrapping up issue #3 right now, and it should be out in early November for those of who are looking. Plus we've got a cool treat for Soulfire #4 that we think everyone will really be excited about.

   In the mean time I've posted ALL the available pages of original art from Soulfire #2 up on the web store. Take a look and see if anything tickles your fancy!

www.mikedebalfo.com online store: mikedebalfo.storenvy.com/colle…

Best,
mIKE

Now on Instagram!

Journal Entry: Sat Sep 15, 2012, 5:24 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Billy Joel
  • Drinking: Water
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Just like the title says, I finally broke down and opened an Instagram account because I can't have enough things to eat up time!

Instagram username: Squirrelshaver

There's not much to see just yet but I'll get more material up as it becomes available per my travels and occasionally peculiar life. Major props to my homie Samantha Samsam for being the first follower (yussssss) but I really hope to see many of you show up! I'll be able show many work-in-progress teasers since it isn't as much of a file sharing media like Facebook or Twitter are and I'll be able to share some of the experiences I run into while on the road, like the time that Raven Gregory and I accidentally got stoned and lost in San Diego, that I haven't really done yet even on Facebook.

Anyway, that's about it. Hope you aren't too disappointed. ;)

Peace!
mIKE d.

Original Art On The Website

Journal Entry: Wed Aug 15, 2012, 12:22 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Guns 'n Roses
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Greetings fellow Deviants!

   Original art is now available through the www.mikedebalfo.com website. www.mikedebalfo.com/

   Following this link mikedebalfo.storenvy.com/colle… will bring you right to the page you want to be on. Inside you'll immediately find a couple new covers and some of the remaining Soulfire #1 pages at VERY affordable prices. Why are they so low you ask? Part of the reason is that a lot of people say they can't normally afford original art, and being that this is my first interior work, I want to fairly share it with the people who have helped me over all these years. It's largely because of the regular Joe that my art career perseveres and I feel that everyone deserves a fair shot at owning a piece of this book. I've only kept two pages for myself and the rest are on a first come first serve basis.

   With that said, thank you ALL for your continued support and friendship. I sincerely mean that when I say none of this would be possible if it weren't for folks like yourselves!  

Best,
mIKE d.

Original Art Up For Grabs!

Journal Entry: Tue Jul 31, 2012, 10:05 AM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Guns 'n Roses
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The Vet Tix charity auction is up and live! I donated this piece of original art featuring Mary (White Rabbit) and Jessica Nigri (Pikachu) to our good friends at Vet Tix and here's your chance to score a real nice piece for a good cause and a great price! All proceeds from the winning bid go to the 'Heroes Wish' project run by Vet Tix to make a dream come true for one lucky military veteran!

Vet Tix eBay auction: www.ebay.com/itm/MIKE-DeBALFO-…

   Vet Tix "Heroes Wish" website: www.heroswish.org/

A Farewell to Tails by SquirrelShaver

New Sketchbook in Online Store!

Journal Entry: Tue Jul 17, 2012, 10:51 AM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Guns 'n Roses
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The new 2012 "Hot Lead" sketchbook is OFFICIALLY available for online purchase! This years sketchbook is 32 pages of rare/never before seen artwork including a behind the scenes look at some of the creative process that goes into each piece.

Also available online at the same time is the new Brisk Summers print that premiered at SDCC and a red hot Supergirl print!

Check out www.mikedebalfo.com www.mikedebalfo.com and visit the store for more info. :)

Hot Lead 2012 Sketchbook by SquirrelShaver Brisk Summers SDCC by SquirrelShaver

San Diego Comicon 2012

Journal Entry: Sun Jul 8, 2012, 7:52 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Guns 'n Roses
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Special thanks to Judd Terror at TheOutHousers.com for this fantastic write up about Aspen Comics' spread of exclusive material debuting at San Diego 2012. Aspen is cracking out sixteen (That's right 16) new exclusive covers for SDCC this year along with a nice handful of new limited edition prints.  They also included the convenient checklist that Mark Roslan at Aspen created to help you in your quest to snag some sweet memorabilia. Such a novel idea that another publisher swiped the checklist and placed *their cover photos on top of the original and released it as checklist for their booth as well. haha.

   The following is a list of creators (including myself) that Aspen will host throughout the weekend and following that is the article from www.theouthousers.com: www.theouthousers.com/index.ph… (for any of you running covert operations your cubicle; just copy and paste the text from this journal entry into a Notepad document, Word Perfect document, etc. and evade detection from big brother boss-man. ;) )  You can also follow this link for full visual of the checklist and ALL of the exclusive merch that will be available from ASPEN COMICS!

Aspen Comics Booth #2321.

Aspen creators:

- Frank Mastromauro
- Peter Steigerwald
- Vince Hernandez
- Mark Roslan
- J.T. Krul
- David Wohl
- Mike DeBalfo
- Alex Konat
- Joe Benitez
- Beth Sotelo
- Tony Parker
- Nei Ruffino
- Oliver Nome
- Micah Gunnell
- David Schwartz
- Jonathan Marks
- Brett Smith
- more guests to be announced

___theouthousers.com___ by: Judd Terror_________________________________________

"Make sure to wear baggy pants at San Diego Comic Con if you're planning on picking up some of these NSFW Aspen Comics exclusive prints and comics.

The Outhouse hopes there are extra first aid staff on hand at San Diego Comic Con this year, because with these Aspen Comics exclusives floating around, this reporter foresees a lot of fanboys with a lack of appropriate bloodflow to their brains. Yowza!

Along with the exclusives, we've got Aspen's schedule for the show with signings and panels. Check it out!

San Diego Comic Con International 2012 will be the launch site for Aspen Comics' largest collection of their convention exclusives and exciting announcements to date. To help fans and Comic Con attendees keep up on the studio's huge assortment of events and products for the show, the publisher has provided an Aspen Comics SDCC 2012 Checklist featuring their entire weekend plans, exclusives and innovative new merchandise available only at the Aspen Comics Booth #2321.

Aspen creators Frank Mastromauro, Peter Steigerwald, Vince Hernandez, Mark Roslan, J.T. Krul, David Wohl, Mike DeBalfo, Alex Konat, Joe Benitez, Beth Sotelo, Tony Parker, Nei Ruffino, Oliver Nome, Micah Gunnell, David Schwartz, Jonathan Marks, Brett Smith and more guests to be announced will be appearing all weekend long at the Aspen Comics Booth #2321 to meet with fans, sign autographs and provide sketches courtesy of the publisher.

For the first time ever, Aspen will be offering highly-limited, hand-numbered "Aspen Century Edition" exclusive books on a per-daily basis throughout each of the five show days, limited to only 100 copies in existence. The Aspen Century Editions will be sold on a first-come-first-serve basis with only one copy per customer, with an extremely limited number to be made available on the AspenStore.com. Due to the anticipated sell out of these products, Aspen Comics strongly encourages fans to arrive at the Aspen Comics Booth early each day to ensure their copy. The following titles will be offered as Aspen Century Editions on these respective days:

7/11 Wednesday Preview Night: Fathom #6 - J. Scott Campbell Aspen SDCC Century Edition [Limited: 100 copies]

7/12 Thursday: Soulfire #1 - Mike DeBalfo Aspen SDCC Century Edition [Limited 100 copies]

7/13 Friday: Executive Assistant: Assassins #1 - Elizabeth Torque Aspen SDCC Century Edition [Limited 100 copies]

7/14 Saturday: Soulfire: Grace #1 - Giuseppe Cafaro Aspen SDCC Century Edition [Limited 100 copies]

7/15: Sunday: Fathom: Kiani #3 - Talent Caldwell Aspen SDCC Century Edition [Limited 100 copies]

The publisher will be bringing to Comic Con the largest assortment of new 2012 SDCC convention exclusives ever. The list of SDCC 2012 convention exclusive titles include:
- Idolized #0
- Executive Assistant Assassins #1
- Homecoming #1
- Soulfire: Volume Four #1
- Soulfire "The Search for the Light" books:
--- Soulfire Hope #1
--- Soulfire Despair #1
--- Soulfire Faith #1
--- Soulfire Power #1
--- Soulfire Grace #1
- Charismagic #6

Please see the Official Aspen Comics SDCC 2012 Checklist for more details.

Aspen will be releasing a new line of their industry-leading art prints featuring Aspen Comics' most popular covers including Fathom, Soulfire, Lady Mechanika, Executive Assistant Iris and more, as well as the Aspen Tour Print 2012 SDCC Edition. Aspen will be offering their highly limited "Daily Prints" at the show as well. Please check the Official Aspen Comics SDCC 2012 checklist for specific details on Aspen's new prints as well as the Aspen Daily Prints.

The red hot Michael Turner Sketchbook returns to Comic Con for its third installment and will feature new and popular Turner art, sketches and more, limited to 1000 editions. Due to the high demand for this product, Aspen encourages fans to pick up their copy at the Aspen Comics Booth early.

The Official Aspen Comics Panel 2012 on Friday at noon in room 9 will feature the entire team of Aspen creators as the publisher will announce several all-new properties for 2012 and beyond as well as detailing huge plans for their upcoming 10 year anniversary celebration. The team will also reveal never-before-seen art and will offer an intimate Q&A with fans. All Aspen Comics Panel attendees will receive a free gift courtesy of Aspen Comics.

For full specific details on Aspen Comics' Comic Con 2012 events and exclusives, please check the Official Aspen Comics SDCC 2012 Checklist."

For more information on Comic Con International please check Comic-Con.org and for more information on Aspen Comics please check aspencomics.com or aspentore.com

Facebook.com/aspencomics

Twitter.com/aspencomics

Soulfire #1 is COMPLETE!

Journal Entry: Wed Jun 27, 2012, 5:48 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Guns 'n Roses
Links

Art Status
Requests
Closed

Trades
Closed

Collaborations
Closed

Commissions
Closed

  • Sketches - 1$

  • Lineart - 5$

  • Colored - 10$

  • With BG - 20$



Just finished my first issue of Soulfire and couldn't be higher on cloud nine right now!

That's all for now!

PEACE!!
- mIKE d.

Online Store Officially Open!

Journal Entry: Fri Jun 8, 2012, 11:13 AM
  • Listening to: Volbeat
  • Reading: Soulfire Vol. 2
  • Playing: Batman Arkham City
  • Eating: Little Debbie Swiss Cake Rolls (Nom)
Links

Art Status
Requests
Closed

Trades
Closed

Collaborations
Closed

Commissions
Closed

  • Sketches - 1$

  • Lineart - 5$

  • Colored - 10$

  • With BG - 20$



It is with great pride that I can finally say the MikeDeBalfo.com online store is officially OPEN for business!! Swing through and pick up your squirrel girl prints today!  mikedebalfo.storenvy.com/

Thank you all for being so patient while waiting, I know this has been over a year in the making. The convenience of this online store is that you van now purchase prints and other merchandise with PayPal *or* a debit/credit card!

Check it out when you can!   Mike DeBalfo Online Store: mikedebalfo.storenvy.com/

Best,
mIKE d.

  • Listening to: Volbeat
  • Reading: Soulfire Vol. 2
  • Playing: Batman Arkham City
  • Eating: Little Debbie Swiss Cake Rolls (Nom)


In case you missed it, over the Phoenix Comicon weekend a my redesign the MikeDeBalfo.com website went live. www.mikedebalfo.com/ Still have a lot to add, including the online store I keep promising, but for now there is at least live blog featured where I will try to post a new sketch every day.  Galleries will also be added soon but you can pretty much see all my published work right here on DA so I'd like to add a few more exclusive goodies at some point. In the mean time add this sucker to your bookmarks and check back often!

Peace!
mIKE d.

  • Listening to: Volbeat
  • Reading: Soulfire Vol. 2
  • Playing: Batman Arkham City
  • Eating: Little Debbie Swiss Cake Rolls (Nom)


• NOW AVAILABLE FOR ONLINE PURCHASE •
________________________________________________________

Email your order request to: mandmdebalfo@gmail.com
________________________________________________________

- "Dejah Thoris" Print
- 13"x19" HQ Canvas Paper
- Limited signed and numbered: 50 Copies (each)

• $30.00 Each (Plus Shipping) LIMITED AVAILABILITY

-- Please specify "Censored" or "Uncensored" versions when you place your order.

Best,
mIKE d.

:thumb292293471:  Dejah Thoris -Uncensored- by SquirrelShaver
__Censored________Uncensored__

Emerald City Comicon!

Wed Mar 28, 2012, 9:21 PM
  • Mood: Joy
  • Listening to: Volbeat
  • Reading: Soulfire Vol. 2
  • Playing: Batman Arkham City
  • Eating: Little Debbie Swiss Cake Rolls (Nom)


Here's a friendly reminder that I will be at Emerald City Comicon all this weekend; March, 30th - April, 1st!  I will be at artist alley table #P-22 with Raven Gregory, Eric "Ebas" Basaldua and Nei Ruffino.

- Sketches: $40 (No blank cover sketches will be done.  Sorry, I can't express how much I hate those things. I will have paper for you!)
- Signatures: Free With purchase of admission ticket
- Prints: $20-$30
- Photographs: 1 Cigarette
- Boob Signing: FREE! (Duh!)

Also I'll be cracking out the debut of the limited edition Dejah Thoris prints! Censored and uncensored versions limited to just 50 copies EVER!

See you there!!!

mIKE d.

dejah_thoris__censored

dejah_thoris__unensored

Shit Hitting The Fan

Mon Mar 26, 2012, 4:04 PM


As some of you may have read on my Facebook this morning, last night and perhaps a couple weeks ago, the 'ol SquirrelShaver has been going through some shit and I wanted to take a moment to clarify some issues.  As a professional artist sometimes these are lessons learned the hard way because the politics of the industry, comic books in particular, are so sensitive.  I'm normally very reserved and my wife and I keep these situations to our own circles but things need to be vented before my eyes explode.

   1st.) Don't sell yourself short when selling artwork. You put your time and effort, sweat and tears into every piece of art that you create and you, if no one else, should respect that. Set a price and stick with it. No one is coming to you at your job to haggle you about prices on sheet rock, a gallon of milk, or that awesome new purse that Coach just released right? No. Your price is the price.

   Also, if you have a piece of art that you really love. It's just one that struck all the right chords for you and you choose not to sell it, don't let time or more recent pieces that you've created effect your decision to let go of that particular piece of art. If you love it that much you will miss it when it's gone. Keep it unless someone holds your family ransom!

   About a month ago I sold one of my original cover arts that I swore I never would let go of. It was just a piece as I stated above. It struck all the right chords with me, a lot of people wanted it, but I just looked to it as a milestone in my progress as an illustrator. It wasn't my first published work but it was cool to me. Anyway, I sold it for a pretty penny more than I've EVER sold a piece of art. To a point I felt a bit guilty but at the same time I felt that if I don't have to sell it yet than I won't so, mleh! I normally only sell to people I know or people I have been dealing with for years and I know they are buying for their personal collection. It's just nice to know that my work isn't being passed around like the community bicycle seat or used as coloring practice for someone's Crayola's.

   Last night I was tipped off that this piece of art was up for auction on Ebay which I thought was a little strange because I was under the impression that I sold to a collector and I keep an eye on this stuff. I've never seen someone flipping my art. I looked into it a bit more and found out that it was now in the hands of an online comic book retailer? I don't even care that they are asking for more than I had sold it for, it's just the fact that one of the pieces I held so dearly was not in the hands of someone who even gives a shit about it. They just saw an opportunity to perhaps make some coin and it means nothing to them other than this: $$$.  

  I sell most of my originals because I have to bring in something that provides decent money. If this was any other piece of my work, in fact there are three DeBalfo originals up for grabs on eBay right now, I wouldn't care even half as much. It's just the simple fact that this cover meant a lot to me and it's like seeing one of my kids up on the auction block and I can't afford to buy him back if I wanted to and that pretty much sucks a dick.

  This isn't about me looking for pity, it's about you learning to avoid situations like this. Like I said, if you make a piece of art and you really want to keep it around NEVER put a price tag on it because then the temptation to sell is there and in the end you will always miss that piece even if you make better art down the line.
  
   2nd.) One of the first things that I learned when I started getting published work is that your word is your bond. When you and another professional discuss an idea and come to agreeable terms on something, words like; "trust me", "Yeah, I can do that" or "No problem, I'm on it" carry a lot of weight that can carry you to new heights or knock you back several steps.  No one is going to draw up a legal contract to bind you to every agreement you make or hold your hand so and poor fresh lemonade for you because you're special.  No, it's up to you to understand that you are not the only individual in the world they have the option of using and perhaps, just maybe, someone is counting on you to practice what you preach to help them support their needs as a civilized homosapien. Or maybe they're just counting on you because you gave them a promise that they intended you to keep. Especially if you're being paid to keep that promise.

   Now things happen and deadlines are missed. That's sometimes how things go and I'm guilty of that on more than one occasion.  We're artists. We are prone to being fuck up's and putting video games before work but that's what separates amateurs from professionals. I love video games and cartoons but I know when it's time to be responsible and live up to the expectations of someone else.  It can be forgivable to miss a deadline here and there but not everyone is that giving.  When you miss CONSECUTIVE deadlines with someone who is willing to give you a second, and the ever rare third chance, and you blow those deadlines as well then you're up Shits' Creek with no paddle but at least you're in a nice fucking canoe to keep you out of the stink.  However if you then decide that instead of apologizing you're going to lie about why the work is late on each occasion or perhaps add insult to injury by taking it as a personal slight towards you and saying some shit maybe you shouldn't? Well then the editor/hiring hand is going to take that comfy canoe away, replace it with a straw and bid you adieu. The professional art field is not for the lazy.  In any work field you choose to take part in you have certain responsibilities. If you cannot discipline yourself to get you your job everyday and do what you're committed to doing you WILL get fired and freelance art is the same way. You will be held accountable for your actions and let go back into the sea of unemployed.  

   So long story short; I hired a good friend to color a piece of my art after missing two previous deadlines. Tried being a helping friend, gave him the benefit of a doubt and a VERY clear deadline. Knowing from past experience I also hired a back up artist to cover my ass because my friend was falling behind. Again. Back up artist pulled through in a timely fashion, he got the job. I continued to hound my friend until the art was complete because I was seriously pissed that he went back on his word. Both colorists were paid their full asking rate. Friend gets mad, blasts me, get's shit canned. Should I have told him about the back up? In hind-sight, yeah, probably but my past experiences tell me that it wouldn't have gotten things done quicker.

   Business is Business. If you can't do something own up to it. Don't let your confidence get the best of you and cost you an ongoing gig. Those of you know know me probably know me a pretty easy going guy but when it's business time that just what it is; Business. You best have your shit straight. I have a family to provide for as well and I expect professionals to act accordingly to their respective titles.

   3rd.) Don't pass judgment on people you don't even know. And I don't mean yo know this person because you partied a couple times or have a few brief encounters with him/her. You don't really know someone until you know their middle name (unless they don't have a middle name and that's just weird anyway). It sounds funny but think about it and it's true. How much can you know about someone if you don't even know their full name?

   Don't judge someone because of their actions towards a friend of yours until you've heard both sides of the story. The truth lies somewhere in the middle, much like the middle name thing, and you don't show squat unless you were witness. Sometimes our friends do shitty things to people that we don't know about. Are they bad people? Probably not, but it's human nature to have confrontation and disputes. Just because your buddy Joe says this guys Jack is an asshole because Jack stole Joe's girlfriend. Maybe she's a whore? Maybe Joe is a whore and his ex-girlfriend didn't like that? Maybe Joe isn't completely open and honest with you about everything. Or if you friend Kathy says Megan called you a "twunt" don't take that at face value. Why is it so easy for you to immediately believe that? As artists and art appreciators we're supposed to be more indulgent thinkers than the rest of our superficial race. Be better than that.  (Note: this also applies to the friend I spoke about missing deadlines. It sucks for me but don't pass immediate judgment on him because you probably don't even know his name. The whole point of that was to clearly define why working with friends can be a painful thing.)



Thank you for giving me you clothes, your boots and your motorcycle.

Best,
mIKE d.