I've long been a fan of DC Comics Artist Nicola Scott, especially when she's illustrating the wonderful stories of Gail Simone (who is #1 on my Fanboy I-Will-Meet-You-Before-I-Die List - .but not in a creepy way. Really. Okay, maybe a little). However, I only recently learned that the lovely Nicola is in fact an Australian! Gail and Nicola's work on SECRET SIX is right up there as one of my favourite runs of books out there at the moment, and SECRET SIX is still always at the top of my reading pile in the week it comes out. The book stands alongside LEGION OF SUPERHEROES and X-FACTOR as the only books I collect in single issues AND trades. If they print SECRET SIX toilet paper I'll buy that too. But never use it of course. That would be REALLY creepy.
Nicola was recently a guest at the Supanova Pop Culture Expo in Sydney. I had hoped to stop in and get a sketch from her, but alas, I couldn't stay long enough to do so. To console myself, I did a bit of searching to see if she sold her artwork anywhere, and I discovered the comicartshop website, and more specifically, Royd Burgoyne's Comic Art Shop, which sells original pages from a number of artists, including Nicola! Score!
I've bought a couple of commissioned pieces, but never having purchased original comic art before, I decided to stay at the lower end of the price range and buy an interior page. My final choice was page #5 from issue #9 of the Secret Six ongoing series. My main criteria was a page that featured Bane, who has become one of my favourite characters in comics thanks to what Gail has done with him in this series. Some Catman and Scandal certainly didn't hurt - and for my other fave character in the series, Deadshot, there's always next time - sorry Floyd!
I've taken some of my own photos of the piece, which are on Facebook, but I'm posting the scan of it from Royd's shop here as my photos simply don't do it justice. Click on the pic for a bigger version. Nicola's artwork compliments Gail's writing perfectly. Gail writes such strongly developed characters, and Nicola has an ability to convey characterisation and emotion through her artwork that reminds me of the master himself, George Perez. Gail's words may be missing from the page, but her intentions are clear. Doug Hazelwood's inks are brilliant as well. Mrs AFB and the AFB-ettes, despite being totally clueless as to what the whole thing was about, were really impressed with this, and Mrs A gave me much more than the usual "that's nice, dear" I normally get for new toy acquisitons, and in fact urged me to get it framed right away to ensure nothing happens to it. High praise indeed!
I have to give huge props to Royd Burgoyne's service. His communication was excellent, and the way the piece was packed was so amazing I had to take a photo of it for you - see Facebook. I'd happily recommend his store to anyone. Just don't buy the pieces I want please!
So, many thanks to Nicola, Doug, Royd and Gail for making the popping of my art-buying cher... er, my first tim... uh... oh, goshdarnit - for making me so happy! I hope it was good for you too! I definitely want to do it again!
Until next time!