Friday, March 18, 2005



Around the time of Stone, circa 1997-1998, I inked 11 pages of a comic book that was being called "Jinn", pencilled by Whilce Portacio. I don't remember the exact circumstances of its production, aside from a memory that it was very challenging to do. I loved inking it because I was able to exert a lot of my artistic sensibilities when Whilce allowed me to come in and add a lot of backgrounds and textures.

At the end of that 11 pages and a cover, I looked at it and I thought wow, it's one of my inking jobs that I thought really woked out well. I waited but no more pages of Jinn came, and pages of other comic books arrived and I worked on them instead.

I didn't hear any further news about Jinn until I saw an ad somewhere about this comic book being released. But it didn't contain Whilce's or my work. Apparently, another artist, Gabriel Rearte, was hired to redraw our first 11 pages, continue the issue, and work on the rest of the series. Edgar Tadeo was hired to ink.

Gabriel is a very talented artist and I think the issue came out really well. Whilce's and mine's Jinn had a different artistic sensibility that took the feel of the comic someplace else. It's not necessarily better or worse, it's just different. I was compensated for my work of course, but to me that was not too important. I was proud of the work I did in that book and I would have loved to see that one in print. I had been working in comics for 6 years by that time and I was still (and still am) thrilled to see my work published.

I'm glad at least that they had used the cover that Whilce and I did for the first issue.

It wasn't until last week did I find out that our 11 page Jinn story did see print on the pages of Frank Frazetta Illustrated #6 in 1999. I would not have found out about it had I not been searching for some back issues of Alex Niño drawn stories. He apparently did some for the Frank Frazetta Illustrated magazines and upon browing, I was startled to see our Jinn cover as a variant to one of the issues.

Working on a hunch, I put down an order for the magazine (along with some Alex Niño and my father in law Rudy Florese's stuff) and the package arrived today.

And true enough, our entire 11 page Jinn story is there in full color glory, finally in print! After the initial rush and thrill upon seeing this work published, I got a little bit disappointed when I realized I did not get inking credit in the story, nor was I informed that my work appeared in this publication. I did not get a complimentary copy as is normal in things like this, but that would have been allright had my name been on it. Call it ego, maybe, but to an artist, credit is sometimes more important than money or any other compensation. It's a matter of pride to see one's work and people know you did it, whether they like it or not.

I've had my name mispelled and forgotten altogether a couple of times before, but they're all in the past and I've gotten over them. I expect to get over this too, but it drives me much harder not to let it happen the next time around.

I'm only saying this now not to seek any sort of restitution. After all, it's all history now. It's SIX years after the fact and I doubt that those involved can do anything about it, nor am I looking for them to do anything about it.

I'm just saying it because it's a normal human reaction to be disappointed at something like this. And like I said, I just want to say it and I'm pretty sure I'll get over it soon enough. Like tomorrow.