Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Entry 76: X-Men: Nation X Cover

This is a cover I recently did for a new X-Men mini series called Nation X. I pencilled and inked it. It was colored by Morry Hollowell.

When I was 11 I had a Jim Lee X-Men door poster. You remember the image.
That poster is burned in my mind.
Getting to do this cover was so cool for me. It was like getting to do a new take on that Jim Lee door poster. (except my take isn't as much fun, in my opinion)

Some thoughts on this cover:
It is strange to do these big team shots because it's kind of hard to imagine why the characters would all be standing there like that.
In  this shot the X-Men are on an island that used to be Asteroid M. The only distinguishing characteristic that was portrayed with any consistency that I could remember was that big arching window. So I had to include that.
I purposefully didn't draw Wolverine with his claws. It just seemed so obvious that he'd have his claws out. In fact I cropped him at the wrist. His claws could be out, but I've chosen to focus on the man not the claws.

Here are my original un-colored piece and my sketch.

The sketch might be my favorite version.


  1. That's an awesome image. Love how individual everybody feels. The rocky outcrop gives a nice shape to the group, and some justification for the school photo on the bleachers arrangement that these giant group-shots use that's pretty pleasing to my sense of space.
    Thanks for posting all three versions.

  2. Really great cover.
    That does look like it'd be fun.
    If only they made it into a wall poster now.

  3. holy smokes- that cover is fantastic, dustin!

  4. Thanks so much for the comments. I've been feeling a little insecure about my abilities lately. So it's nice to get some good feedback.

  5. Actually, the editor told me they might. I'm not getting my hopes up though.

  6. if you don't mind my asking, what are you doing for the gray tones in that piece? Is it an ink wash, and if so are you using a heavier board than the standard 2-ply bristol to avoid buckling?

  7. I'm using cool grey Prismacolor markers. With this piece I tried to limit myself to only a couple values. I primarily used 30%

  8. Ah! Thanks. I used to use their warm gray markers on caricature gigs -- I'd burn through about one every two-three hours.