I heard the terrible news yesterday morning about Mike's passing at the age of 44. Too young. The first I saw of Mike's work was when he was doing the how-to section in Wizard comics magazine. I really enjoyed his clean crisp pencils and how well he explained forms and how well his drawings demonstrated his lessons. I met Mike last year at the Baltimore con via his pals Craig Rousseau and Todd Dezago. He was amazingly positive and friendly. Over the last year he and I e-mailed each other a few times. The most recent was a few weeks ago about the Russ Manning Award. I replied to him in brief knowing we would be able to catch-up more at this years Baltimore Con. I was wrong.
Mike's work embraced a classic all-ages approach where ladies didn't need to be half naked to be beautiful and villians didn't have to be dripping in blood to be menacing. The comics industry just lost one of their freshest voices. Even after decades in the business, his work still looked original, interesting, solid, and new. I'll miss his artwork.
Winter 1152 Issue #1 *UPDATE*
Due to a mix-up at Diamond, the books didn't ship out and have been at Diamond's warehouse for weeks. (The books were set to go out for the 25th of July!!!) Now it looks like the release date will be August 22th barring an unforseen incident.
Please accept my appologies. (I mistakenly typed the wrong day when I made this update..It's the 22nd, my appologies AGAIN!)
We are moving forward with it! I have talked about it over the past year at shows and people always responded positively. The plan is an oversized (12" x 12" same size as the original artwork), limited edition (1000 copies numbered), in a slipcase. Lots of people have commented on how they like seeing the original black and white linework on the pages when I bring them to cons. Mark and I have batted around this idea for a while and are looking at a Dec. release*
*please note that the details of this release may change