JP1000 & Friends #1
August 3, 2009

 - Project Date:January 24, 2007

Sorry that hiatus was longer than I expected but I always underestimate how much SDCC will take out of me. It was good though. Met some friends, didn't annoy Chuck too much (I hope), and bought a ton of new Minimates.

This post details the construction of the first illustrated episode that I did for the Minimate Headquarters web comic, JP1000 & Friends. It was a small departure from my usual Minimate graphics. Up to this point the Minimates were are featureless blanks. For this image I had to figure out how to recreate the full design.
In early 2004, MMMV member Fujis contacted me about doing some work for the Minimate Headquarters website. One of their main features was a periodic webcomic called "JP1000 & Friends". A typical episode would have a single photo followed by several paragraphs of story. It's a good vs. evil setup with JP1000, Fake Gold Spidey on the heroic side battling Evil Overlord and his minions. I'd give you a link to read for yourself, but MMHQ recently had a site redesign and the old posts haven't yet returned.

Initially I wasn't sure if I could (or wanted to) adapt to a new style so I didn't make any promises right away. I decided to go back in the JP1000&F archive and replicate an existing photo to see if it would work and get some feedback. You can see the results above. Fujis and I both liked how it turned out so we ran with it.

(Click for a larger version)

After sending some design ideas back and forth, and deciding on a logo, this image finally came out the other side. I still like it. It might be a bit too detailed but I don't care. Anyone familiar with the Palisades Muppet Labs playset will see some similarities with the background equipment as I used them as a basis.

At the posted resolution you lose a lot of detail so here are a couple crops to get a better look:

One of the monitors in the background that show just some of JP's damaged areas. I don't know how it can tell the right hand is damaged when the his whole right arm is no longer attached. I guess it's technical. Maybe some advanced form of robotic muscle memory?

The fake Gold Spidey. In the context of the story I can't remember if he painted himself gold for some reason or if it was an outside entity. In real life however, I do believe Jatta Pake painted him gold (poorly) as a joke on the MMMV message boards. The figure was then later incorporated into the story.

This is my favorite part of the image. I just love the way Iron Man looks here and the blow torch flame came out nice as well. With all the Iron Man Minimates we've gotten, I still like this one the most. It's probably just because he was first. You never forget your first Iron Man.