I was a wee lad in the summer of 1972. I liked Spider-Man a lot. His cartoon (the 1967 series) was on TV (and still rules today). But it wasn’t until Mom gave me 20¢ in the drugstore that I bought a copy of this, my first comic.
A nice-looking copy of the published comic. I still have the copy I bought, though it’s pretty ratty and I wrote my name on the cover.
Written by Gerry Conway and drawn by Gil Kane & Steve Mitchell (the cover was inked by Frank Giacoia), it was a sequel to the greatest Spider-Man storyline ever told (personal opinion there).
In a story arc running from Amazing Spider-Man 100 through 102, Peter grew four extra arms, teams up with the Lizard and fights new villain Morbius, the Living Vampire. Coolness personified.
This story followed a few months later. I’m using its cover as a way to show people my process for cover reconstruction and colouring.
A raw scan of the line art from The Essential Marvel Team-Up Volume One.
Contrast- and density-corrected scan. The art is looking pretty good, but there’s a wonky warp and woof to the logos, most likely due to a stat of the masthead being glued down wrinkly on the page and then reproduced that way. The published comic shows the same effect.
With the logos reversed on black – and looking pretty rough even on the cleaned-up scan – I went looking for better elements to work with. I found them on a scan of issue 5 available on Heritage Auctions.
When I re-create type that was originally hand drawn, the goal – as I see it – is not to perfectly duplicate the original, warts and all. I try to respect the feel while at the same time bringing consistency and the quality of construction we can achieve with modern tools.
These elements were replaced with vector art. The red items were re-typeset with digital type. The black items were hand drawn. The Comics Code seal I had re-created previously.
Colour applied to the vector elements.
The cleaned-up art. The frame border was as rough as the logos, so it was replaced. Putting the black background on a separate layer made it easy to composite the different pieces together.
All the pieces put together with the cover’s original colour re-created.
A colour version of my own. I pulled much of the colour saturation out of the background to pop Spider-Man forward with his primary colours.
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From 2002, the first time I coloured this cover, without the logo reconstructions. I was just beginning to explore computer-aided colouring.