Art

Separating the Art from the Artist

Suppose an artist or a writer says something that is loathsome or morally reprehensible? Can we therefore judge the artist’s work as having no value simply because the artist is a jerk?

Walter Popp

I consider myself pretty knowledgeable about old science fiction art, particularly pulp magazine art and artists. My knowledge is not so vast, however, that there aren’t still some surprises and new discoveries to be made.

Doujinshi: Distinctly Japanese

There are many expressions of fandom that cross genres and cultures – fan fiction, fan art, even cosplay.  But there is one form in particular that is distinctly Japanese, both in its origin and in its current form, and that is doujinshi.  The term refers to anything that is self-published (“doujin” means “same person”), but […]

The Art of Au Contraire! 2013

A couple of weekends ago, I had the pleasure to attend Au Contraire!, the New Zealand national Science Fiction, Fantasy and Geekery convention here in Wellington. It was the second Au Contraire! I attended: three years ago, I was personally recruited by Kelly, the principal organizer, who walked into my art show on Cuba Street […]

The Artful Collector: Is it All in the Image?

At the heart of this debate is a real difference between how some creators of commercial art (i.e, art produced for the purpose of persuasion/marketing) view the kind of art they are commissioned to create, and how they view the art they create that no one is paying them to produce, what they call “personal […]

East vs. West: Comic Book Showdown

Though my position here, such as it is, is that of “anime blogger,” I think that my real interest in media from the Land of the Rising Sun is comic books, otherwise known as manga.  Despite being exposed to Western comics fairly early on in my life, it wasn’t until I started reading manga that […]

Marvel Comics: The Untold Story by Sean Howe

If you’re looking for a glossy, full-colour account of Marvel Comics, featuring classic artwork and covers from the company’s long history, this book is not for you. Rather, Sean Howe sets out to give an insider’s view of the editorial and management world that lay behind the creation of such icons as Captain America, Iron […]

The Real Manga Blues: A “Me and the Devil Blues” Review

Of all the potential stories to succeed phenomenally in manga form, not many people expect a story centering around blues music in the deep American South to qualify.  Even less likely is a story about blues great Robert Johnson – the black man who purportedly sold his soul to the Devil in order to play […]

Interview – The Amazing Art of Anja Uhren

I met Anja Uhren recently at an Easter egg painting event. She was casually painting a face on an off-cut of card and I was immediately impressed by the effortlessness with which she produced a strikingly unique portrait, straight out of her imagination. Later I looked up her work online, and was so impressed, not […]

Hayao Miyazaki and Epic Fantasy

Since taking on this blogging position, I have been struggling to find works that would appeal to the audience that Amazing Stories has, particularly those who are interested in fantasy.  I would categorize a large majority of anime and manga works as “fantasy,” based on the fact that they frequently have fantastical elements to them […]

Art in Action: A Bakuman Review

I spend a lot of time lately complaining about the state of anime and the series that have been created within the last five or so years.  In the course of this tirade, shounen manga has often been the main focus – mostly because the most popular titles right now all happen to be geared […]

The Artful Collector: Why Collecting Art is Such a Hard Job

Someone in a chat room I used to contribute to, once made an unforgettable statement: “it’s easy to collect art if you have money!” Hah!  How I wish money were the answer!  And that a fat wallet could make all the hard work of collecting go away! Collecting art is easy only if you have […]

Roger Ebert

The Clubhouse: Roger Ebert, Death of a Gafiate

The death of Pulitzer Prize-winning Chicago film critic Roger Ebert has already been eulogized far and wide. Most of the accolades concentrate, rightfully so, on Ebert’s storied career as a newspaperman and critic and his well-written reviews and essays. But here in the microcosm, we can remember him a little differently, because as a youth […]

It’s Pretty – and Deadly: Horror Animanga

[Author’s warning: the following post contains images with some violent and/or graphic themes. Please proceed with caution.] Any of my friends could tell you how much I hate horror movies.  Whether it’s the hack-and-slash or the jump-out-and-terrify, I’m not into it.  I have no desire to see the serial killer fantasy played out for my […]

A Lesson in Suspense

One of the great things about science fiction and fantasy is that it takes us to new worlds and gives us new perspectives on things that we never had before. With science fiction that can also include time travel — traveling into the past and getting new insights and new perspectives on things events or […]

Art + Fandom ≠ Fan Art, part II: Images of Galadriel

Well it looks like I put my foot right into it in my previous post! Several people objected to my definition of the term “Fan Art”. They felt that it was not in accordance with how “Fan Art” has historically been defined and used within Fandom, and how it is still defined with regard to the […]

Art + Fandom ≠ Fan Art: Definitions

Before I get properly rolling with this blog, I thought it might be worth taking a moment to stake out the territory I plan to cover. This website, and these blogs, are all about fandom, and so it might be expected that the art I am posting here will be what goes, these days, under […]

Dress For the Occasion: The Scantily Clad Female

So, here’s a question: Say you’re a beautiful woman (I assume some of you reading this actually are women. Please believe me when I say that in my eyes all women are beautiful. If you’re a man reading this, then use your imagination) and you need to leave the relative safety of your spacecraft to […]

I Dreamed I Saw the Silver Spaceships


When people think about science fiction the first thing they usually visualize are spaceships (or green skinned women in shiny bikinis, but that may just be me). The spaceship has been a ubiquitous part of SF since the beginning and depicting such a thing has been a challenge that many artists have tackled with varying […]