Damage #14 King Kong Cover!

It is time for another cover process blog.  I hope you all are reading Damage from DC Comics because that is all you’re going to be getting for awhile.  This latest cover is a little more interesting than usual because I had to make a pretty significant change to the cover after it was done.

Let’s take a look and see just what happened.

It was a day like any other.  My editor shot me an email and said it was cover time.  I had to do something with a giant monster theme, which is right up my alley.  I turned out a few cover roughs…

Damage14CvrC Damage14CvrSketches

As you can see, cover sketch “C” is an obvious riff on Fantastic Four #1.  Maybe not the most original idea but I couldn’t resist.  Those of you who read my run on JLI will recognize the little rock trolls from a story arc from that New 52 series some 7 years ago (yikes).

I really thought “A” would be picked but apparently Dan Didio likes King Kong so “B” was chosen.

I went ahead and did the penciling for the cover.  I pulled out some gorilla reference to make sure I got the face accurate (or at least as accurate as I wanted it to be).  So far so good.


I liked it, my editor liked it, everyone seemed happy.  So I took the next step and inked it. This time almost entirely with a no.2 Kolinsky Rafael Red Sable Brush.


This quickly became my favorite cover of the series thus far.  But then….

My editor noticed something that admittedly I had noticed as well but shrugged off.  The pose I had Damage in was eerily similar to the previous months cover.  Let’s take a side by side look and see.


Oohhhhhh boy.  This almost looks like I took the Damage from cover #13 and pasted it on the cover to #14.  Obviously, this had to be changed.  I had the choice of completely drawing a new cover (which I almost did) or doing what any sane commercial artist would do…create a patch.  I opted for the lesser of two evils and created a patch.


I got approval and then inked it.


Then using the miracle of Photoshop, I pasted this new Damage over the top of the old Damage in the cover file.  It obviously didn’t fit exactly right so I had to to go in and add some lines and blacks to the Gorilla that got erased when I removed the original Damage figure.  It came out looking like this.


If I hadn’t just told on myself in this blog, no one would be the wiser.  The real painful thing for me now is that the original art is in two pieces.  It can’t ever be properly displayed the way it came out in the printed version.  I’m such a type “A” personality that that kind of thing drives me nuts.  I’m almost tempted to go old school and cut out the patch Damage and glue it onto the original and make the corrections around it on the actual art but I am resisting the urge for right now.

Anyway, finally everyone was happy and I sent it off to Brian Miller to be colored.


Everyone really liked it except for the blur lines on Damage’s fists.  We had Brian remove those and then finally, absolutely, everyone was happy.


So ends another tale of the creation of a comic book cover.  This one had a few more twists and turns then usual but that’s why you tune in, right?

As always thanks for stopping by and we’ll talk soon!



4 thoughts on “Damage #14 King Kong Cover!

  1. I see nothing wrong with copying from another cover. Rembrandt did it all the time. Besides, it’s a popular pose. Personally I think version A would have been cool as a cover.

    • I agree in a vacuum the first version is the best version. However, with the similar pose appearing on concurrent covers it would have been ridiculously obvious and I’m sure more than one reader would have called it out.

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