Saturday, February 7, 2009

Supergirl #39 Cover By Joshua Middleton

On his blog yesterday, Joshua Middleton revealed the finished cover to Supergirl #39. This is a pretty eye-grabbing cover showing a malevolent looking Reactron just oozing Gold-K energy. This take on Reactron looks more robotic ... more inhuman ... and as a result more threatening.

Compare the cover to this pic of Reactron from Action #872. See how the exposed eyes and neck make Reactron look like a 'guy in a super-suit' or a masked pro wreslter? While I know Reactron is human, by seeing the exposed flesh in areas, it just makes him less ominous somehow.

One thing I really like about Middleton's blog ( ) is that he talks about the creation of the cover art, often from design through finished product. Here is what he said about the Supergirl #39 cover creation.

I wasn't sure how to go about rendering all of the metal, and wound up experimenting quite a bit. I started with a quick digital sketch as a foundation (which I used to get approval for the image from my editor) and made a new line drawing by tracing the rough sketch cleanly. I then shaded the line drawing by hand with some water-soluble graphite pencils, which I was able to blend with a clean wet brush. I also went in with some white paint to pull out some highlights. I scanned the gray "chrome" rendering back into the computer, placed it over my basic sketch, and tried several different blending modes to marry it with the base layer. It required quite a bit of brushing and smudging to look decent.

Sounds like a pretty laborious process to go through to get it where he wanted. As a fan, I appreciate reading these things as a peek behind the scenes.

The solicit for the issue from is below.

"Who is Superwoman?" part 3! Supergirl continues her manhunt for Reactron, determined to bring him to justice for the heinous crimes he committed in "New Krypton"! Meanwhile, Lois Lane and Inspector Mike Henderson investigate the appearance of a dead body in Metropolis Harbor. Whose body is it and what could it have to do with the new Woman of Steel? Find out as the big mystery of 2009 continues!

We now know that the body in the harbor is Agent Liberty, killed by Superwoman.

Man, this book is clicking on all cylinders right now.


Heath Edwards said...

we are truly getting some lovely art in supergirl these days...

Gene said...

Thats an impressive piece. What is also intriguing is that you can see Supergirl's "S" but not her face. So you do not know if she is mad, startled, determined, or slightly injured until you open the comic. A very effective cover indeed.

Heath Edwards said...

actually, you kinda can see supergirl's face. its on the right side of the forehead, next to the 'jewel (?)'. its a bit warped because of the shininess and rounded surface of the helmet, but it is there...

TalOs said...

Good Lord! Y'know that cover actually looks like an actual homage to Steve Segal/Scott McDaniel's own future era Superman 'father of Cir-El' cover! (The one that had Cir-El's future era android depicted father Superman's face close up with his 'S' shield seen placed on his metallic mask!)

I love it! :D

And is just me or does it look like Supergirl's costume might've been changed judging by the pure size of that 'S' shield reflection too?? :/

Anonymous said...

To think Reactron started as a rather underwhelming supervillain in the old "Daring New Adventures of Supergirl" book back in the early 1980's.
Look at him now, crowding the B-list with Metallo and the Atomic Skull....
That cover is stone cold awesome though...and Reactron's rise thru the ranks is heartening, what next a re-imagining of "The Gang", a second look at the Gyronaut...or (dare I say it) another attempt at "Decay"????

John Feer

Anj said...

That cover is stone cold awesome though...and Reactron's rise thru the ranks is heartening, what next a re-imagining of "The Gang", a second look at the Gyronaut...or (dare I say it) another attempt at "Decay"????

I keep holding out hope for Blackstarr. Heck, we even saw an updated version in Action #850.

But so far, sounds like Reactron is the only rogue brought up to modern times.