Feast your eyes on the cover to Apollo, designed by Dan Forde with illustration by our very own Mike Collins.
On the surface, Apollo is a story about astronauts. But it’s also a story about life, death and dreams. The intention with this cover was to try and capture some of that vibe.
Apollo has been meticulously researched with the intention of being a 100% accurate account of the Apollo 11 mission… but that doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun!
Below are Mike’s development sketches for a character we like to call ‘The Spirit of America’, along with the reference board we gave Mike when he started work on the project.
Buzz Aldrin was and is a complex man. In Apollo we hope to explore some of this inspirational man’s more introspective moments.
This wonderfully simple panel by Mike depicts Buzz contemplating both his past and his future as he prepares to land on the moon, and seemed a fitting post for New Year’s eve as people all around the world look back and forwards at their own lives.
President John F. Kennedy never got to see his vision of a man on the moon ‘in this decade’… that honour fell to President Nixon. In this scene we explore Nixon’s insecurity living in the great JFK’s shadow.
Before making history on the moon, Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong both flew in the Korean War. The page below is taken from a scene following Buzz’s time in combat.
It’s been a very long time since we posted on the blog, mainly because we’ve been busy turning all that research into ART (by ‘we’, we mean Mike, along with colourist Kris Carter and Letterer Ian Sharman).
We don’t want to spoil too much, but we’ll be giving you sneak peeks at a couple of non-spoilery pages over the next few days. To kick off, here’s a splash page from a scene revolving around the ill-fated crew of Apollo 1. Without the sacrifice of Gus Grissolm, Ed White and Roger Chaffee, Neil, Buzz and Mike would never have made it to the moon.
As you may or may not know, Mike is based in Cardiff, so most of our communication is done over e-mail and skype. But when you’re collaborating on a creative project, sometimes you really just need to get in a room together. So that’s last week we did just that… and where better to do it than London’s Science Museum?
Mike getting some reference photos of the full size LM replica
Matt reviewing some artwork. It’s important to make sure the script is translating well and make any necessary changes at this stage.
Mike snapping the Apollo 10 Command Module. This bad boy actually orbited the moon in May 1969 before the Apollo 11 landing later that same year!
The Apollo crew walking on the moon!
It’s been a while since we posted anything. Why? Because we’ve been working!
The script is now finished and Mike has thumbnailed the whole thing. We’re now in the process of reviewing panel flow and debating any changes before we move on to pencils.
Mike has been busy ‘thumbnailing’ the first batch of pages from Apollo. Here’s a sneak peek of what’s in store from the graphic novel…
Last night, as part of their ‘Robots’ season, London’s science museum held a double bill screening of 80s classic sci-fi movies The Terminator and Robocop.
While obviously not space-related, attending the screening came with an added bonus: a a chance to walk through the museum outside of normal hours, which meant we were able to get up close and personal with a number of the awesome space exhibits, free from the usual crowds.
Here’s what we saw:
The Soyuz TMA-19M descent module that carried British Astronaut Tim Peake home from the International Space Station in June 2016.
A full size replica of the Apollo Lunar Module.
The actual Apollo 10 command module, which carried Tom Stafford, John Young and Eugene Cernan around the moon in May 1969.
A Nazi V2 rocket, developed by Werner Von Braun who went on to become chief architect of NASA’s Saturn V rocket after the second world war. The V-2 rocket was the first artificial object to cross the boundary of space during a vertical launch in 1944.
Sadly, this piece of actual moon rock was not on display, but here’s a photo taken in a previous visit: