Well blog got an amazing visual upgrade with a HUGE thank you to Python Puckman on Hisstank who took the time to make two awesome custom Leaky Suit Brigade Banners!!! The first one is up today and I will be switching back and forth between the two banners from now on! Thanks again for the banners, I would never have been able to do that without you!
Earlier today, the Club released a teaser image of the 12 figures in the Figure Subscription Service and said that registration and reveals would soon follow. Well, we did not have to wait long for the first two new figures revealed! In addition, the FSS is open and available to pre-order. I already got my set!
The Club revealed Night Force Falcon and one of my favorite figures, the Brazilian Tiger Force Air Tight! In addition, they also released pictures of the previously seen Skull Buster and Dragonsky!
A week or two ago there was an amazing auction on eBay. It was a binder full of over 500 character designs for the GI Joe Sunbow cartoon series! The auction ended up selling for over $2,200! I snagged the pictures to share with everyone before this disappears forever into a private collection. Enjoy!
It is no secret that I am a fan of the IDW Joe comics. Recently I was able to score what I see as the iconic page from GI Joe Vol 3. Yes, I know it is only through the second issue, but I think this page will have a lasting effect/image on the series. I acquired the original pencil drawing of GI Joe #2, page #2 with Darklon, Firefly, Croc Master, and the Baroness looking badass and taking over the small town.
I have had a VERY busy day on eBay! Today is the first official day of JoeCon and the people with the Golden Ticket are going through the Club Store now and more importantly putting pictures and the toys up for sale!
Here is the list:
- The Night Force Specialists 2-pack consists of Freestyle, a new female pilot, and Chuckles. $60, secondary market $150+
- The FLAK w/ Steeler $66, secondary market 120+
- The Night Force Boomer con price of $145, secondary market 275+
- The KREO Night Force 6 pack $33, secondary market $55+
- Lady Jaye MOC $30, secondary market 200+
- KREO paratrooper Hit & Run $14 (I think this goes on sale tomorrow, after the parachute drop)
- The free bonus item is a night force ferret, secondary market $45+
Here are early pictures!
Hey guys check out Flag Points Micro Ep. # 7
Skilled rapper, Joe fan and bud to the FP crew, SJ Wordburglar is about to drop a full-length, exclusively G.I. Joe-themed album on the world (Mu-a-ha-ha-HA!!) on May 30. We are big fans of his work and we’re particularly excited for this release! You can get 3/12 tracks for free (or for a donation) at http://propsdept.bandcamp.com/album/welcome-to-cobra-island-free-download right now! If you check out this episode, you’ll hear a yet-to-be-released sample from the album’s intro track which we think is amazing! SJ knows his Joe like very few others and he has the skills to broadcast his knowledge in a way that needs to be experienced to be believed! Only Wordburg can do what you’re about to hear. We wish SJ the very best and we are thrilled every time we get to “rap.” Now somebody make a custom RAP VIPER!!!
On Hisstank, curtsy of vatsalsharma posted the first known pictures of the Funskool Mobat. Apparently he says that they are out there, and not as mythical as some of us think, but he lives in India, so he has better access than us. Apparently he sold at least one to a buyer in Singapore. Here are the pictures:
Andrei Koribanics was an artist for Hasbro and he did quite a bit of pre-production artwork for the GI Joe line. He worked on Joe from 1983-1985 and did a number of pencil concept sketches as well as full-blown illustrations (in oil on board) for characters that had “passed the first round” of approvals. He was also behind many of the motorized backpacks. His work was for internal review.
Here is the email interview we had:
-What were you doing before Hasbro? Were you interested in the toy industry prior to working for Hasbro?
I was just breaking into the art & design industry when I got the opportunity to work for Hasbro. I’ve ALWAYS loved toys (still do), and, having grown up on the original 12″ Joes (I’m 57 now), it was natural, and very exciting for me. I never made a conscious effort to enter the toy industry… it was pure happenstance that I had the opportunity.
-How did you initially start working with Hasbro as a freelancer? How long did you work with them?
I met Ron Rudat (Director of Boys’ Toys at Hasbro) and Bill Merklein (artist extraordinaire and master sculptor for the new, smaller Joes) through the MFCA (Miniature Figure Collectors of America) about 1983 or so. We were all sculpting and painting historically accurate miniatures (largely of military figures) and showing together, and we quickly became friends. Ron and his crew were getting a little burned out on the Joe line, and looking for some new blood to inject a little life. Bill was sculpting the masters for Hasbro, and, knowing I was an illustrator looking for work, he introduced me to Ron. I only worked for Hasbro for two years or so, but it was quite a busy time, with very tight deadlines… and I thrived on it 🙂
-Did you work on other lines besides G.I. Joe for Hasbro?
I did some exploratory work for a line of plushies called ‘Wuzzles’, but as they didn’t carry any weapons, I lost interest 🙂
-I’ve seen vehicle designs and internal presentation paintings, did you do other kinds of work for G.I. Joe like sculpt inputs (figure turnarounds)?
No… that was Bill Merklein’s job. I would never step on a friend’s toes unless he asked me to.
-What stage(s) of the design process were you involved in? Mainly early presentation art?
Yes, mainly internal presentation art. I would be sent a rough sketch of the character to be depicted, along with a few notes about what to concentrate on and accent (special uniform details, weapons, etc.) I would then create a full-color rendering of the character… I worked in oil paint on illustration board… a bit overkill for the other designers at Hasbro (most renderings were done in marker), but they sold the concepts and I sincerely enjoyed the process. I’m a detail nut by nature, so it was the best medium for me.
I DID do a dozen or so concept drawings for additional characters, all in pencil on tissue. I would get no more than a suggestion for a character (e.g. ‘message runner’) and take it from there. I loved the way Hasbro would create an entire ‘story’ about their characters and I did the same thing… again, getting very caught up in details.
-Any favorite vehicle or character designs that you remember?
I recall ‘Snake Eyes’ very distinctly… also a Bomb Demolition character. I never designed any vehicles, but I did design a series of wind-up motorized backpacks that I am still quite proud of. Either my designs were spot-on, or Hasbro needed to bang them out, but I was thrilled to find them in my local ‘Toys-R-Us’ when they were released, and to see that they stuck to my original designs by about 99%.
-Do you own/collect any of the final production pieces that you worked on?
Sadly, no. Hasbro was not very good at sending their designers samples of their products, despite repeated requests. As mentioned above, I had to purchase anything I designed, if I wanted an example of it, so I did purchase each of the backpacks at ‘Toys-R-Us’ …. then made the mistake of letting my nephew play with them… LOL! Well, his puppies got a hold of them and that was that. I figured, ‘heck… they’ll be around for a while… I can always buy another set”. Oh well… live and learn! 🙂
I don’t collect Joes myself, though I do see the charm, of course. I prefer model-building, so collect kits like there’s no tomorrow (mostly aircraft). I still sculpt and paint smaller-scale figures for my own pleasure, and enjoy collecting more realistic 1/6 (12″) figures these days. I am not as much into nostalgia as I am into realism.
Mr. Koribanics still works as a designer/illustrator/sculptor on a freelance basis. Anyone interested can check out his site at: www.andreik2.com