Many years ago, immediately following my graduating from college and my marriage to The Lovely Anna, I moved from Minnesota to Georgia to be the manager of a caricature art concession at Six Flags Atlanta. I worked with a lot of different caricature artists during my two years at that Six Flags, but I’d be hard pressed to think of one more gifted than Eddie Pittman.
Eddie started with the company I was managing for, Fasen Arts, in my second (and last) year as their Six Flags Atlanta manager, and eventually he worked for me at Underground Atlanta for several years before moving on to bigger things.
In the intervening years Eddie has worked doing comics and freelance illustration, with Disney Feature Animation as an animator on such features as “Mulan”, “Tarzan”, “Fantasia 2000” and several others, taught at the Ringling School of Design, conducted a popular series of drawing classes in the Orlando area for aspiring animators, directed his own animated feature “Legends of the Night Sky: Orion” for 360¬¨? planetarium dome theaters (the first of its kind, I might add) and also managed to marry a charming young lady named Beth and produce an equally charming young daughter named Ginny.
He has also been a good friend for 20 years. He and I collaborated on a special issue of NOW Comics‘ Married… with Children in 1992(ish). It was a double issue. One side was a story Eddie drew about Al thinking he was involved in a spy plot, and if you flipped the issue over the other side was my art on a story about Peg going to a weekend spa retreat and imagining it was mirroring the plot of a romance novel she was reading. (On my introducing Eddie to NOW Comics… sorry about that, pal.)
Eddie may have a long list of accomplishments but his first love has always been comics, and when he started doing a webcomic/graphic novel I knew it would be something special. Eddie is nothing if not a perfectionist, and his new project is as terrific as I had expected.
Red’s Planet is a story about a young girl who runs away from her foster home only to fall prey to that all-too-often scourge of the wandering orphan… abduction by aliens. She is mistakenly kidnapped and then marooned on a mostly deserted planet, where she encounters some oddball and eclectic other castaways. The story is just getting started, but it is already intriguing, and the art is stunning. There are six pages of the story prologue already on the website, and they leave you wanting more. Eddie sent me a fantastic teaser comic featuring Red and her first meeting with “Goose”, which you can also see on the website although it is a bit hidden. Go to the drop down menu “Chapters” on the right side of the web page and choose “Preview” to see the 24 page teaser… or just follow this link. Yes, the taste of great art and storytelling so far on Red’s Planet is just the tip of the iceberg.
I heartily recommend visiting Red’s Planet. It will be worth the travel.
Red’s Planet and all related images ©2009 by Eddie Pittman, all rights reserved
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909 New profile pic courtesy of my self-caricature for the Scott Maiko penned article “Gotcha! Mug Shots of Common (but Despicable) Criminals” from MAD 550
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