The Transformers Collector's Club has posted a new update today regarding the 5th year club exclusive comic. Robby Musso (Spotlight: Ultra Magnus, Spotlight: Ramjet) will be providing his artistic talents for this coming years club comic. This year will start out with Issue 25 and will feature a recap of the previous 4 years worth of story for those who have missed them.
The club has also posted the last two pages of last year's finale on their DeviantArt page which anyone can view by clicking here. To view the original posting and become a member, click here.
-Disciples of Boltax- With this week's update, Jim Sorenson shares the animation model and design created for Megazarak's cartoon transformation. Megazarak is the eqivalent of the U.S. G1 Scorponok. While not included in either Ark Compendium Book, this piece and the others we have seen are nice connections to the old television animation, and appreciated by fans who own the books and want more, and fans of the art and design of the period.
You can view 'The Disciples of Boltax'here, and then follow the link to the newest blog about Megazarak's original illustrations.
Thanks to Jim for his continued willingness to share these pieces of Transformers history with us. A sample of the page is teased below.
Transformers Artist Josh Nizzi took time out to notify Seibertron.com of a new image that's been posted over at Comic's Continuum.
This first look shows us the cover for the upcoming story arc Transformers Revenge of the Fallen: Defiance #4 with the leader of the Autobots engaged in battle with a familiar foe. WARNING!!! Possible spoilers follow:
Here's the scoop on the next installment to this story arc:
Written by Chris Mowry, art by Dan Khanna and Andrew Griffith, covers by Josh Nizzi and Alex Milne.
The explosive conclustion to the official prequel to this summer's Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen film! With their forces united, the Decepticon army prepares to leave Cybertron on a mission of galactic conquest. But the Autobots and their leader, Optimus Prime, plan to do the unthinkable in order to defeat the increasingly-powerful Megatron.
32 pages, $3.99.
You can view the original posting on this by clicking here.
Transformers fan site OneShallStand.com has a recent interview with Shane McCarthy posted.
In the interview McCarthy defends his comic series to his critics, and discusses characters, as well as some choices he's made.
Q4) AHM is now a quarter of the way through and it's clear from postings on the various message boards that readers either love the new direction or are furious about it. I can't think of any other TF book I've read recently which has had such a polarising effect.
Well, since I was so late getting this interview to you, it's now halfway through so I'm guessing it's even more polarised now? I don't know. I think we've definitely found our audience though which is great. Not everyone is going to like everything and I hope that never changes. I think that's the beauty of how IDW is handling the license though, there's something there for everyone. If you're not a fan of AHM, there's the Spotlights and other mini series' you can grab and vice versa.
Clearly I'm hoping people enjoy the book though and always work to make that a reality.
You can read the rest of the interview here, and join in the discussion.
A financial article has appeared on the site of Business Week in regards to earlier reports of Motion Picture director and Transformers moviesProducer Steven Spielberg and his resurrection of Dreamworks Studios. As reported back in July of last year, Spielberg had landed a deal with India-based movie studio conglomerate Reliance, for a business proposal for $1.5 billion to potentially produce up to 30 movies in the next 5 years.
This article however reports that with the current weak economy, both Dreamworks and Reliance have been having problems putting their finances in order to achieve the $1.5 billion mark and will most likely be settled at only $650 million. Instead of a seven year plan it would appear that Dreamworks will now only concentrate their efforts for the next three years in the their current status. The returns of movies like Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen may be an important factor for Dreamworks to rebuild itself over the next few years. What this would mean for future movie products including a future third installment of the Transformers Movies franchise is undetermined at this time.
Just a reminder that next week, January 21st on NBC, the new Knight Rider show will feature the return of the "Evil Prototype" K.A.R.R. voiced by none other than Transformers voice actor Peter Cullen, who is of course best known as the voice of Optimus Prime from the original cartoon series and the Michael Bay Transformers movies.
Last night's episode of Knight Rider also featured a teaser for the upcoming episode called "Knight To King's Pawn", which fan site knight rider online was gracious enough to host on YouTube. In the 20 second clip you can hear Peter Cullen as KARR say the line "KITT Must Die!!!"
It appears that the UK's Prime Minister is "more than meets the eye"! Several articles on British websites have posted stories regarding a recent event in which the current British Prime Minister, Gordon Brown stated his opinion on a radio show that Optimus Prime could solve the current problems in our world. To read The Sun's version of the story, click here and to read Telegraph.co.uk's version, click here.
It might be cold outside but the activity at Transtopia has been hot. This edition features the creative work from December. Check out the latest customs, artwork, painting guide, and contest. We also have exciting news in the wings - two new sections will roll out next month: Fan Fiction & Artist Interviews. Make sure to read about the details below so you can part take in the action and possibly get featured. And in March, get your cameras ready for another creative section. Remember, to visit Transtopia periodically for the latest work.
How to Showcase Your Work
The newsletter is your opportunity to show off your work and talent. We rely on your articles, artwork, and customs to make it interesting. Entries will be reviewed on a monthly basis. You can submit your work here: Repaints, Kitbashes, Scratchbuilds Fan Art, Fan Fiction, Guides
Make a Difference, Join the Newsletter Team!
Want to contribute to the Seibertron community? Why not join the newsletter team? We need a few more volunteers for our crew. Duties require a few hours each month, consistently. Roles include layout & design, overseeing sections, and formatting. If you are interested send me a PM: Stormrider.
Newsletter Editor - Stormrider
Guides Editor - Dead Metal
Interviewer & Columnist - Burn
Fan Fiction Editor - Sledge
Customs Formatter - Mattyc1007
Chuck Close is a famous and very talented painter from Monroe, Washington, United States of America. He was part of the Photorealism art-movement from the US in the 1960's in which the artists based their paintings on photographs. He was one of the greatest of this art-style; but after he was paralyzed from the neck down he really rose to fame. He managed to still paint but being unable to move his arms properly he created a completely new technique of painting to achieve photorealism. He achieved this by painting in grids similar to pixels so when looked at from afar it is indistinguishable from a real photograph.
He paints to this day in this art-style.
As the first Transtopia "How to .." painting guide fellow Transtopian, The Freezer, shows us how you can paint your favorite Transformer in the style of Chuck Close.
Painting Guide (Chuck Close Style)
I had a spare day at college a while back and did this.
1. Find a picture of your desired Transformer and then grid it.
2. Get a canvas or a peice of paper masking taped to some board.
3. Grid said paper or canvas. There MUST be the same amount of squares as on the original gridded picture.
4. Paint the squares in block colour using a mix of the colours in the square on the original picture. For example- original pic- red and black your painting- very dark red.
The end result should be like a pixelated image.
5. Now we add the detail, this is done by painting small shapes in the coloured squares to look like the corresponding square on the original pic. Close up its jibberish but back away and you should see it.
6. Fill in the back ground squares with more funny shapes.
Do you want to contribute to the Transtopian guides? Then send us an e-mail: Transtopia.Guide@gmx.de You can find the guidelines by clicking here.
Cyber-Kun is this month's featured artist. Cyber-Kun gives us his rendition of Animated Jhiaxus. It is interesting to see how the color scheme, vehicle mode, and transformation were carefully considered during the execution of this piece. You can post your comments about this featured artwork here.
Honorable mentions goes to Zero-Kaiser for his Scourge/Nemesis Prime. To all of you modest artists out there, make sure to submit your artwork for the next newsletter here by January 31st. Submissions are open for all Transformers artwork (new & old pieces).
Okay Transformers Mythos Writers here's your chance to be featured in the next newsletter! Starting in February, the Transtopia Newsletter will feature a Fan Fiction story written by one of you. Seibertron member, Sledge, will be directing this new ongoing column and select one story each month.
Entries will be reviewed monthly. Make sure to conform to the guidelines below. Submissions are open for new and old stories. There is no limit to the number of stories that you can submit, but please do not resubmit the same story twice. Post your entries here.
1) 10,000 word limit. Rough guideline to start with, I won't be automatically disqualifying anything that comes in over.
2) Decent spelling, grammar and punctuation. People need to at least run a spell-check over the thing before submitting it. This isn't me being a grammar Nazi, it's just difficult to get absorbed in a story if you're constantly being jolted out of it by bad spelling.
3) Be specific as to where/when the story is set. So what continuity is it in (G1 comic, G1 cartoon, Armada comic, etc) and where is it set? Before the events of the show or comic, after, during? If during, where does it fit?
4) Fan characters are fine, but I'd prefer people avoid making them those annoying "I am more powerful than any other Transformer!!!" types. Also, consider if there's an under-used existing TF who'd fit the needs of the story just as well as someone new. Existing characters are almost always more interesting to everyone else.
Artist Interiews with Burn G'day folks, Stormrider's asked me to throw a blurb together to introduce myself and to also introduce another new part to the monthly Transtopia Newsletter.
My name, obviously, is Burn, and I've been handed the duties of having a chat with one (or more, depending on interest and time) of our many artists that frequent Seibertron.com and Transtopia.
The aim of the monthly chat is to get to know a little more about our creative geniuses, more than just their finished pieces of art. I'm sure many of you have looked at a kitbash or a repaint, or a photoshop piece or even read a fanfic and wondered who the person is behind that.
So that's where this little feature intends to come in. We'll get to know the people behind the art.
Some of you may be wondering, "Why you Burn?" Well Stormrider and First Gen were busy doing other stuff, plus I have done my fair share of creating things.
Some of you may remember a few of my characters from Seibertron.com's Heavy Metal War game. I'm the guy responsible for creating such characters as Gore, CATalyst, Slice, Dice, Dead Reckoning, Cannon Fodder Lemming, and the midget clone every body loved to hate, Mini-Maximus Prime, together they were better known as "The Freaks". I've written a number of back stories for some of these characters, and kitbashed nearly all of them (along with a number of other characters, including Autobots, plus a couple of characters created by Whisper and War Hammer).
So where did it all begin for me? Looking back it really began a bit over two decades ago around the age of 10. Al Gore had yet to really invent the internet, porn was still predominantly distributed on VHS, and Optimus Prime was a truck and Megatron was a gun.
I had never even heard of the term "kitbashing" and my skills up to that point in my life had been basically assembling model aeroplanes, which also often resulted in my fingers being glued together more than the planes themselves.
I also, it seems, had a fascination with the colour "black".
I'd take junker toys, including some busted TF's, and just cobble parts together. If anything these "creations" were the original "Freaks", because that's what they were, freaky looking things, I was a young Dr Frankenstein to plastic toys.
Who liked to paint things black?
I should also point out that at that age too, kids really shouldn't play with sharp knives.
Over the years though I drifted away from Transformers, blame High School. It was only a few years ago that I got back into TF's and in my quest to acquire many missing figures for my collection, I gathered up a nice pile of junker TF's.
This was the early days for kitbashing I might add, Transtopia didn't exist, and many of the major TF forums dedicated very little space to kitbashing. But I had all these junkers and influenced by the few artists that were around, I decided to try my hand.
In no way do I consider myself to be a great kitbasher, (and even less of a writer) but I do have a number of figures I am proud of, and then there are those I just don't even want to talk about!
If I was to say the one thing that is important to me when it comes to kitbashing and even writing, it's to create an original character. Canon characters just aren't my thing, I like creating a character from scratch, defining its personality, and making that personality match the figure.
I also rarely do a straight repaint. I always feel the need to modify a figure in some way to set it apart from the original mould. Whether it's something minor like a weapon change to something extensive like articulating a brick, anything to make it just that little bit different and unique.
So that's me, I'm sure Stormrider was hoping for some shorter, but I had to do SOMETHING while Dexter downloaded!
So this is where I turn it over to you guys, if you've showcased any form of artistic piece here on Seibertron.com recently, be it a repaint, a kitbash, a piece of fanfic, a photoshopped pic, or anything else that you've posted, and you're interested in being interviewed just drop me a pm and we'll get the ball rolling: ucp.php?i=pm&mode=compose&u=4677
Hey all you savvy digital artist. Do you enjoy whipping up signatures and showing them off on the Internet? Well, here's your chance to put your skills to the test. Create a banner for the Transtopia Newsletter and become the ultimate show off.
Additional banners are needed for the newsletter. Create one or several banners and enter for your chance at fame and glory. The deadline is January 31st. There is no limit to the number of entries you may submit. The winner(s) will have their banners proudly displayed in the newsletters and receive credits and bragging rights.
Create one or all four: (Banner titles)
1. The banner should be 500 pixels wide x 165 pixels high.
2. You can only use pictures or artwork that you have received permission for. You are welcome to use the images from the Seibertron galleries for this contest.
3. Each banner should have the title in the bottom center.
4. Submit your entries in jpeg format.
Hello Seibertronians. First Gen here with a Seibertron.com exclusive interview with Josh Van Reyk (aka Richter) and Shaun Knowler (aka Whiterabbit), the Transformers Mosaic team and authors of the upcoming Spotlight: JAZZ comic book. In the following interview, we get a good look into the creation and forces behind the Transformers Mosaic continuum and an exclusive first look at something good.
First Gen: Josh and Shaun, or should I say Richter and Whiterabbit, first and foremost I'd like to thank you two for taking time out to talk to Seibertron.com.
Josh Van Reyk: No Sweat. Seibertron and its members have always been really supportive of the project.
Shaun Knowler: Indeed, something we've always appreciated. Seibertron's always been a main TF destination online for me as well. I think Hasbro should tip you guys for how much money your photo galleries have convinced me to spend...
FG: Thank you. Seibertron works diligently to get the fans the best images of TF figures so you can see them up close and personal before you purchase them.
Okay, here's the first couple of questions we have for you gents: What was your vision of Transformers Mosaic when if first began? Was it started to find new budding artists and writers from the TF Fandom?
JVR: Honestly, it was just a way for me to kill some time at work...
SK: Government jobs: nice work if you can get it, eh? Actually, we started the project as a small collaboration amongst a handful of users on the IDW boards, inspired by some strips in a similar format done over at the Allspark. We never really intended to have more than 5-6 pieces put out, but before we knew it the whole thing exploded.
So no, it wasn't originally planned to be some sort of Transformers Idol (unlike the Cover Contest we did for IDW), but we're very proud of the people who've found pro work through the showcasing and networking that TFM provides, and even prouder of the community and friendships forged.
JVR: Yeah, I still can't believe what it (the project) has achieved.
FG: Amazing isn't the word for what Mosaics has become. I wonder if HASBRO and IDW ever look at them as say "Hmm, let's make that one official."
Moving on, seeing that TF Mosaic has literally taken a life of its own, where do you see or would you like to see the Mosaics go from here? Would you like to spread them into larger projects, such as 5 page spreads or types of continuation series?
JVR: Both the "End of the Beginning" and Animated 'specials' worked really well, so we'll probably look at doing something similar this year. Though, something more 'connected' could be interesting, too.
SK: I've always felt avoiding anything too serial keeps the project a bit more accessible. That said, being over 300 pieces into it, we may take some closer looks at trying different things to keep it fresh. As far as the future goes, we might venture into some more logistical or administrative experiments. There could come a time when we could use some more hands on deck to look after things. Time will tell...
FG: One thing I've always thought was most interesting about the Mosaic line is the different stories and plots it offers. One day we'll learn the troubles of Omega Supreme and the next we see the mischief a young Sunstreaker and Sideswipe get into. And the art has just been beyond amazing with some familiar names that have been popping up.
What's it like seeing art from both well known TF artists and average fans coming in? When Mosaics began, did you ever think you'd get well known artists to submit work?
JVR: That's what I think is the appeal, the diversity, you never know what you'll get. Mmmm, chocolates I'll still get blown away by some of the art that I see coming through, seriously, there's some DAMN talented peeps in the TF community.
As far as well-known artists go, back before we had even started posting Mosaics online, Robby Musso was involved. Actually, I think his first piece "Feeling Yellow" was what really got us 'noticed.' We still have a few more well-known guys working on some pieces in their spare time, and we REALLY appreciate it.
SK: I think one of the fun things about TFM is the fact that you might also see some really obscure bots show up now and then. Heh, some have been so obscure that I've pondered including some TF Wiki links!
And yeah, we've been very blessed by the interest in TFM from some of the pro guys. Above all, we are fans, so getting contributions from the likes of Robby, Simon Furman (and the art crew he mustered up for his piece), Josh Perez, Josh Burcham and even Andy Wildman's War Journal cover have been special thrills to say the least! Because believe me, we understand what it means for these guys to donate time they don't have to a just-for-fun project. And I haven't even mentioned the stuff waiting in the wings yet...
FG: To think there's still so much waiting to be released yet. It seems that Mosaic looks to be a way for fans to communicate how they see the TF Universe and where they think it should go, was that the original intention of the Mosaic or did it evolve into that?
JVR: It's a bit of both, really. When we first approached people about writing scripts, we never really gave any specifications. It was more like: "Here's a page, give us your story" sort of thing. I guess we just never imagined there were so many stories.
SK: Yeah, we were more than a bit naive I guess-- about a number of things! The project was certainly founded on a common desire to present a voice and a point of view for the various characters that brought us together in the first place. The result really does make a statement about what it is about this franchise that has caught, and kept, the interest of so many over the years.
FG: 25 Years into this amazing storyline and as it grows, so does the Mosaic. Not too long ago we got the news that you two would be doing a dynamic on one of the Transformers Universe's most celebrated characters: Jazz.
Art by EJ Su & Priscilla Tramontano
Firstly, congratulations to you two on the upcoming work and secondly, can you tell Seibertron.com how this came to pass?
JVR: Thanks very much. Jazz is a favourite of both of ours, plus a lot of other people, so it's amazing to make our official debut with such an iconic character.
As for the story, it was an idea that I had been kicking around for a while, and it wasn't really until All Hail Megatron #1 came out, that I thought it could really work. I threw the idea at Shaun, he liked it, and we worked up a pitch together.
SK: I named my bike after Jazz when I was a kid! TMI? Moving on... IDW was pleased with the pitch, and to push the idea home a little, Andrew Griffith (who's providing the new covers for the upcoming City of Fear reprint series, and pitching in on art duties for the Defiance ROTF prequel) did a fully finished cover mock-up for us to go with it! Denton liked it so much that it's going to be used for the actual release too. And since it hasn't been revealed anywhere yet, we're gonna use this opportunity to unveil it for you folks right now!
Seibertron.com exclusive first look!
Art by Andrew Griffith
FG: This cover just rings of true G1 essence. Given the nature of the two covers, this leads me to my next question:
What is the general time setting for Spotlight Jazz, are we looking at something in pre history, or something more recent, say set between the Revelation and All Hail Megatron story arcs?
JVR: The bulk of this story is set near the beginning of the war, but there are parts set during All Hail Megatron.
SK: Yup, lots of dawn-of-the-war goodness! Oh, and folks who dig fresh Cybertronian designs are in for a treat.
As far as its connection to the overall continuity, I'd like to think we hit a great balance between providing backdrop to current events and keeping it very self contained as well. Anyone who's missed out on AHM could pick this up and not skip a beat.
FG: How did the guys go from condensing so much work into a single page, to having 30+ pages in which to tell their story?
JVR: It was kinda hard, for me anyway. With Mosaic, you only really get to tell one 'event,' where with a full comic, there are numerous ones, so it was a bit tricky knowing the right amount of pages to allocate to each plot-point.
SK: Heh, there were times I felt like begging Denton for a couple extra pages, just to give EJ some room to stretch out and have a blast with some of the action sequences! But all in all, we're both pretty happy with how it turned out. The showdown should be a slobber-knocker, and I know E.J.'s excited to sink his teeth into it!
I'd also like to mention how unbelievably blessed we are to have E.J. and Priscilla onboard! We're just as excited (if not more) as everyone else out there to see what they come up with!
JVR: Agreed. When we first pitched this, EJ was at the top of my list. And it's great to share a debut with Priscilla (as far as interiors go).
FG: So the tale of the tape is as follows:
Transformers Spotlight: Jazz
Josh van Reyk & Shaun Knowler (Writers) • E.J. Su (Art) • Su, Andrew Griffith (Covers) • Priscilla Tramontano (Colors)
Stranded, outgunned and outnumbered, AUTOBOT special operative JAZZ will need every bit of his training if he is going to make it out of this one alive! As things go from bad to utterly hopeless, what chance do JAZZ and his (unwilling) compatriot have, when they’re being tracked by the DECEPTICONS’ most ruthless warriors – THE PREDACONS?
*2 regular covers will be shipped in a 1-to-1 ratio.
*Retailers: See your order form for a special incentive
FC • 32 pages • $3.99
Information taken directly from the Transformers Mosaic Deviant Art page that you can find here.
FG: Anything else you gents would like to add or say to the fandom?
JVR: Just that, if you already like Jazz (and come on, who doesn't?), you should really enjoy this issue. Even if you don't like Jazz, you should still enjoy the issue, especially considering Jazz's companion, who has a pretty decent online following, too...
SK: Yes, a fairly flashy fellow-- who hasn't had much characterization since the mid '80s! And let's not forget the Predacons... Our protagonists sure won't anytime soon!
JVR: Thanks to everyone for their support, and to everyone who I've had the pleasure of working with on Mosaic.
SK: I'd like to give a huge shout-out to all the supportive peeps and great friends I've made at the Transformers: Mosaic community, the IDW Forums and Seibertron.com! Hope to see you all at Botcon!
Josh and Shaun, or Richter and Whiterabbit, thank you again for taking time out to share this info with the Seibertron.com family. We really appreciate this and hope Spotlight: Jazz is just the first of a long run for you guys.
Seibertron.com would also like to extend a special thank you to IDW Publishing for allowing us to conduct this interview and to Transformers Editor Denton J. Tipton, for making this exclusive first look possible. You can view all Transformers series and other products available from IDW Publishing by clicking here, and Mr. Tipton's personal blog From the Tip, which features the latest updates in the IDW Transformersverse, by clicking here.
Oh and Seibertronians, Josh and Shaun are both members here. So, maybe, if you have another question you'd like to ask, post it by clicking View User Comments above and they may answer.
-'Disciples of Boltax' Blog- Writer, collector, and friend of Seibertron.com, Jim Sorenson stopped in to share this week's G1 animation model sheet that was not a part of his earlier creations: the Ark I, or Ark II collections.
This week, Jim updates his blog with Pretender Dauros' weapons. Dauros, for those unfamiliar, is the Japanese namesake of Pretender Skullgrin.
The animation sheet shows Dauros in and out of his Pretender shell, and as well as, various angles and combinations of him holding his weapons and his weapons separate.
"Here is a taste of what might have been if we'd had 256 pages to play with instead of 208. There's plenty more where this came from, too! Let me know which weapons you're most interested in seeing and I'll try to get to them sooner rather than later."
Here's a teaser of what you'll find there...
You can view the whole image and the rest of Jim Sorenson's awesome animation models here, at his 'Disciples of Boltax' blog and read his musings on what extended collections would include, and maybe even give feedback on what you'd like to see him share next!
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