Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Batgirl, Supergirl, Krypto & Ace
Color pencil and black ink on Bristol Board.
22.86 cm x 30.48 cm (9.00 in. x 12.00 in.)
Let’s talk about this Batgirl, Supergirl, & super-pets piece which in a few days, arguably, garnered over 600 Instagram “likes” on my feed, a.k.a. monstergram7. I say “arguably”  because this specimen highlights the mysteries of Instagram.

What’s To Like
The photo of the finished color version of the Batgirl, Supergirl & pets piece above had received over 100 Instagram likes in the first few days. However, this contrasts to the over 600 likes the teaser detail shot of Batgirl had received a few days prior. The “likes” count isn’t an accurate reflection of the number of views granted. Is the difference an indication of the app experience when at the time Instagram did not natively support zooming in on posts on one’s smart phone? Did the detail shot just the right hashtags drawing in all the Batgirl fans, or was there some other favorable mix of things to make the detail particularly discoverable? Was there an at-the-time post convention bump? I may never know.

Also for context, monstergram7 had less than 1500 followers and regularly any given post received something over 100 “likes” and over 200 for the more popular posts. Over 600 “likes” was and continues to be a record-breaking level or a weird anomaly or both.

Detail photo of Batgirl
as posted in monstergram7
I had begun work on the composition at this June’s Heroes Convention as a spec (speculative) piece. This means that it was not a ordered commission, but done to be sold like any other pieces of original art I have at my comic book convention showings. You can also consider it a bit of busy-work to do inbetween actual commissions and talking to folks. This detail shot is from its unfinished state at the end of the con. At the top left corner can be seen the pencilled, not yet inked paw of Krypto.

Other spec pieces done at Heroes was a portrait of Harley Quinn (sold) and the mash-up of Snow White in a Star Trek red officer uniform (not sold). Anything Supergirl or Harley Quinn tend to be the default speculative topics I’ll do at comic cons. In “World’s Finest” fashion, I wanted to team up Supergirl with Batgirl and then I wanted to add the respective super-pets. Of course, in that line of thinking, I should have drawn Streaky the supercat, but having 2 dog had a certain instinctual balance. I’m sure that a future Batgirl & Supergirl team-up will have Streaky and Ace. I also default to 1970s costumes. Come to think of it, I’m not sure if Ace the Bat-hound is part of current continuity were I to draw the lot in their modern costumes.

The most obvious differences from the tease are added blacks to Batgirl in the finished stage. In this case, as I some times will do, I inked according to animation cel practices and leave nearly all areas to be filled with color. This would have been fine. But before starting the coloring, I changed my mind in the manner of realizing that I had forgot to align her costume’s appearance to that of the comic book and added more black areas.

Detail photo of Krypto
as posted on monstergram7
The Krypto detail tease had only received about 100 “likes” in its first few days.

Lastly, this piece also reflects some of my interests that I put into my own comic adventures of Tuff-Girl. See how I made it about Tuff-Girl (wink)?

You can follow me on Instagram @monstergram7:

[The Top 9 of 2016]

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