Friday, April 30, 2010


Hey guys,
Haven't been able to post much lately, I'm SUPER-CRAZY BUSY meeting my deadlines for the RECKLESS graphic novel! I really think you'll get a kick out it, I know I'm having a BLAST working on it! See you guys the next time I pull myself away from the drawing board.
Long Live Pencil & Paper!


Hey Guys! Just a last minute Reminder: Tomorrow Saturday May 1st is FREE COMIC BOOK DAY! Go to your local comic book store and get your FREE, that's right, FREE comics!
What is Free Comic Book Day you say:

"Free Comic Book Day is a single day - the first Saturday in May each year - when participating comic book shops across North America and around the world give away comic books absolutely FREE to anyone who comes into their stores."

PS - CLICK the post title to link to the official FREE COMIC BOOK DAY WEBSITE!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Losers!

Recently I won a sneak peek for The Losers movie. I gotta be honest, I've heard of the comic book, but never read it. And based on all the flashy trailers made for an ADD audience, my expectations were very low. I figured I'd walk out of the theater disappointed and say, "hey, at least it was a free movie." I was wrong. The Losers was AWESOME! I loved this movie! It was a total Romp! A great popcorn movie, full of amazing action and sprinkled ever so lightly with satisfying humor. In short, GO SEE THIS MOVIE on Friday April 23rd (NO, I'm NOT getting paid to promote this movie). And I'll be checking out the comic book series from DC's Vertigo. Enjoy!

Monday, April 19, 2010

"No Easy Way Out!"

Ok, those of you who have seen the Rocky movies are familiar with the song, "No Easy Way Out" by Survivor. This is the heart of what I wanna say here: Everybody in every area of their life comes across challenges that seem impossible or just too difficult. They just don't "feel" like they can overcome that challenge, BUT I'm here to tell you that you CAN overcome ANYTHING if you just give it everything you've got and really put your mind and heart in it! This applies to everything of course, but this being an art blog, we'll talk about how it applies to your craft.
Any artistic challenge I come across, the first thing I do is push even harder through it as best as I can. If that doesn't work, then I take a step back, clear my head (whatever works for you, for me its usually taking a walk or a drive WITHOUT thinking about the challenge). Come back to it with a clear head and start asking questions regarding the challenge; what am I trying to say here? What's the emotional tone of this scene? What is the character thinking/feeling? What kind of mood or atmosphere is best for this scene/illustration (if working on background)? If I'm working on a character design and I'm stuck, one thing that always helps is character symbolism: think about your characters personality, their flaws, their strengths, etc... it wouldn't hurt to even interview your characters and imagine their appropriate response. Let them tell you about themselves....(this one is kind of weird because at first it will seem like you're having a conversation with yourself, but how's that any different than a normal day? You talk to yourself too right? Right? Cause I know I'm not the only one that does that.... am I? guys? anybody?).
Moving on, Character symbolism: What shapes best describe your characters personality? What details show his/her demeanor? For example, if a character is very uptight or strict, or a control freak, their clothing might be very tightly wrapped around them, or tailored to fit them just so; everything in the right place. While a character who is completely laid back and carefree might have very loose clothing and unkempt hair, etc... you get the idea.
Point being that there really is "no easy way out" and "no shortcuts". You can't just give a half-effort attempt to something and expect great results... nothing will ever beat hard work.
When you put hard work into something, you will always be rewarded for it, either by experience, by future success, financial success, growing as an artist/storyteller, etc... Hard work will NEVER fail you & it is NEVER a waste of time. You can always look back on it proudly and say I did ...
I don't mean to sound too preachy or anything, but the truth is there's already so much negative crap out there & it honestly wouldn't hurt to hear something positive for a change.
So, I hope this was encouraging and helpful to anyone out there reading and please don't hesitate to comment or ask any questions.
Long Live Pencil & Paper!
- Sam Lotfi

Thursday, April 15, 2010

"Jonah Hex!"

Howdy stranger, this here's my pich'ur of Jonah Hex. Ok I'll stop with the western accent. I was really in a western mood after reading Jonah Hex; and I realized I've never drawn this character before, so here we are. I don't regularly read this book, but I pick up the occasional issue and I gotta say the writing is really good, and the best part is most of the issues are self contained stories. So, you don't need to know anything before you read it. Each issue has a beginning, middle, and an end. You don't see that much in a monthly book nowadays. So if you're a fan of westerns, go pick up a copy of Jonah Hex. And stay tuned for the inking stage of this drawing. Long Live Pencil and Paper!

Sunday, April 11, 2010


TEXAS COMICON 2010! June 18, 19, & 20. I'll be exhibiting with Aaron Romo at this years Texas Comicon in San Antonio, TX. Booth # info will follow shortly. My new original graphic novel is called "RECKLESS". I will have the new RECKLESS LIMITED EDITION Ashcan & Sketchbook available there. And I will also be taking commissions for original sketches. Look forward to seeing you there! I'll have the booth info # for you as soon as I get it.

Spidey Sneak Inks!

Inking. Its something that can be fun or painfully boring, depending on how you approach it.
If you leave room for creative choices (actually drawing in the details with ink), then inking tends to be a lot more fun. However, if your pencils are so ridiculously tight, leaving no room for creative choices, then you're pretty much just tracing and that gets boring really fast. It usually boils down to a confidence issue. Are you comfortable only loosely pencilling in the structure & layout, then drawing the finished art with ink instead of pencil? It takes lots of practice and time, but you'll eventually get there. You just have to trust yourself enough and be okay with making mistakes, in this day and age we have white out, white paint, & digital fixes for any mistake so there's really nothing to be afraid of. You have to be okay with letting the brush or the pen do whatever it naturally does, and use that to your advantage. Its something I'm still working on and will always be trying to improve, cause there's always room to improve. Again for the process junkies out there; I used a Faber-Castell Pitt artist pen - size "S" - they use india ink. And also a Pentel Brush Pen, those are really cool cause the brush tip is a very flexible nylon that behaves much like a real brush. Until next time, LONG LIVE PENCIL & PAPER!!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Spidey Sneak

I did this spidey recently just for fun. I haven't drawn the wall-crawler in a long time, so it was fun just diving into his world and coming up with a pose and mini story in the composition. Usually, I'll roughly sketch out the entire composition and figures, but this time I just went with the flow of the scene. I just started drawing, roughing in a few things here and there, but overall just doodling it out; improvising on the spot. Sometimes that can work for you, but if you're not careful, it can back fire on you badly. There are a few areas on this image I'm not too happy with, again, because of the lack of planning. Although this one didn't come out just the way I thought it would, I still had a blast drawing it! By the way, for those process-junkies out there: I used a col-erase blue pencil on this drawing. I'll be inking it and posting that next, so stay tuned!