Monthly Archives: July 2012

Chronicle Books The Art of Monsters, Inc. Back In Print

Originally released in 2001, The Art of Monsters, Inc. was the first Pixar “Art of” book that Chronicle Books created. Not only was it the first, but it set the standard for our future “Art of” books which have received accolades from animation fans, professionals and historians who love to see the art and process that goes into making the Pixar animated films.

The Art of Monsters, Inc. has been out of print for years and has only been available on the collector’s market for hundreds of dollars for a first printing.

Chronicle recently reprinted the book and it’s now available on their site for $40.

The Art of Monsters, Inc. opens the door into Pixar’s colorful archives of concept art and to the endearing story of Monsters, Inc. Since the very first bedtime, children around the world have known that once their parents tuck them into bed and shut off the light, monsters lie waiting behind closet doors, ready to emerge. But what they don’t realize is that these monsters scare children because they have to. It’s their job.

This superb film from Pixar Studios, the people who brought you Toy Story, A Bug’s Life, and Toy Story 2, reveals the truth about monsters with the brilliant techniques that have earned them their reputation as a ground-breaking animation studio.

This incredible body of artwork was commissioned from the top artists, illustrators, and animators in the industry and from it the ultimate visual approach of the film was defined. From sketches scribbled on napkins and quickly inked marker drawings, to finished oil paintings and fabulous pastel color scripts, this behind-the-scenes artwork reveals the elaborate creative process behind a blockbuster film.

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Google Handwrite For Smartphones & Tablets

Google Handwrite is a new mobile search feature that lets smartphone and tablet users hand write search queries into Google search.

As the user writes on their screen, Google recognizes the handwriting and generates autocomplete results. Google Handwrite is currently a beta feature and can be enabled in the settings link at the bottom of the Google homepage.

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New Extended James Bond Skyfall Trailer

Below is the extended trailer for Skyfall, in theaters October 24.

Packed with plot details, the trailer reveals that M, played by Judi Dench, made the decision to take out her Double-Oh program’s agents, but was unable to take down the super-suave Mr. Bond. After a period of living it up in death, Bond returns, to a shaken MI6 foundation and a new source of villainous treachery in Javier Bardem.


Dark Knight Returns, Part 1 Debuts Action-Packed Animated Trailer

MTV has premiered the trailer for “Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1,” Warner Bros.’ animated adaptation of the celebrated 1986 miniseries by Frank Miller and Klaus Janson.

Debuting this Sept. 25 under the DC Universe Animated Original Movie banner, the two-part direct-to-DVD release is set a decade after an aging Bruce Wayne quit crime fighting in the wake of Jason Todd’s death, “The Dark Knight Returns” brings Batman out of retirement to save Gotham from sinking deeper into decay and lawlessness. With the help of a new, female Robin, Carrie Kelly, the Dark Knight ends the threat of the mutant gangs that have overrun the city and confronts two of his greatest enemies. But then he must face his former ally Superman in a battle that only one will survive.

Directed by Jay Oliva and executive produced by Bruce Timm, “The Dark Knight Returns” stars Peter Weller as Batman, Ariel Winter as Robin, David Selby as Jim Gordon, Wade Williams as Harvey Dent and Michael McKean as Dr. Wolper. Part 2 will arrive in early 2013.

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Apple Adds Hulu Plus to Apple TV

Apple has added a new Hulu Plus app to the Apple TV. The app, which may require a restart before appearing, allows for access to the online streaming video service.

As with Netflix, users can subscribe to Hulu Plus directly from the Apple TV using their iTunes account to pay the $7.99 monthly fee; a free one-week trial is currently being offered.

Hulu is a joint venture of NBCUniversal, Fox, and Disney, and is also available on Apple’s mobile iOS devices via a free app.

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John Carpenter’s They Live Blu-ray Due On November 6

Shout Factory has officially announced that they will release on Blu-ray director John Carpenter’s cult film They Live (1988), starring Roddy Piper, Keith David and Meg Foster. The release will be part of the new Scream Factory series and will be available for purchase on November 6th.

This special Collector’s Edition release of They Live boasts a bounty of special bonus content, a collectible cover featuring newly rendered retro-style artwork, a reversible wrap with original theatrical key art and much more.

Avid John Carpenter fans, movie enthusiasts and collectors please take note: Order this collector’s edition Blu-ray ($22) directly from and receive an exclusive 18 x 24 poster featuring the newly commissioned artwork! Less than 500 have been made, so these are only available while supplies last.


Apple’s Mountain Lion OS Downloads Top Three Million

Apple today announced that downloads of OS X Mountain Lion have exceeded three million in four days, making it the most successful OS X release in Apple’s history. With more than 200 innovative new features, Mountain Lion is the ninth major release of the world’s most advanced desktop operating system and is available through the Mac App Store as an upgrade to Lion or Snow Leopard users for $19.99 (US).

Mountain Lion features include the all new Messages app, Notification Center, system-wide Sharing, Dictation, AirPlay Mirroring and Game Center. iCloud integration makes it easy to set up your Mail, Contacts, Calendar, Messages, Reminders and Notes, and keep everything, including iWork documents, up to date across all your devices. For more information or to download Mountain Lion visit

Facebook integration will be available in an upcoming software update to Mountain Lion.

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Rumor: Apple iPhone 5 & iPad Mini Event Planned For September 12, iPhone 5 Release Date For September 21

iMore has learned that Apple is planning to debut the new iPhone at a special event on Wednesday, September 12, 2012, with the release date to follow 9 days later on Friday, September 21.

The iPad mini will be announced at the same September 12 event, as will the new iPod nano. No release dates have been mentioned for those devices.


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Thermos Darth Vader Crush Proof Lunch Kit

You won’t have to FORCE feed your child their lunch with this Thermos Darth Vader Crush Proof Lunch Kit ($15). Sturdy enough for a WOOKIE due to its rigid foam insulation, the kit is perfect for any Star Wars fan!

It has a comfortable carrying handle and roomy interior to hold enough snacks to please even JABBA THE HUT.


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We just returned from our 3rd Annual FIRE WIRE Road Trip.  This time our destination was The BIG Apple – NYC. We again set out with the mission to find unique and interesting family friendly activities that appealed to our entire family. We had a fabulous trip and wanted to share with you all of the sights and sounds that we enjoyed.  Continue reading



Cocoagraphs are artisan chocolate bars printed with edible Polaroid-style photographs. Calling to mind nostalgia for years past, these charming confections are completely custom, printed with any photograph, logo, or image of your choosing.

Each Cocoagraph is handmade to order, with your choice of milk, white, dark or organic dark chocolate. All chocolate comes from a family operated company using ethical sourcing and manufacturing practices to ensure superior flavor and quality.

Prices range from $9 – $12.

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Kansas City Alamo Drafthouse Debuts Latest Mondo Poster: The Goonies

MONDO, the internationally recognized collectible boutique arm of the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, has collaborated with artist Randy Ortiz to bring you a stunning poster for the much beloved ’80s classic, “The Goonies”.

To celebrate, MONDO creative director, and Kansas City native, Justin Ishmael hosted a screening of  “The Goonies” on Saturday, July 28, at the new Alamo Drafthouse Mainstreet in Kansas City.

This was the first MONDO screening at the brand new Kansas City Location and screening ticket holders were given the opportunity to purchase one of the limited edition posters.

Follow @MondoNews for sales announcements


Artist: Randy Ortiz
Edition of 320
24″ x 36″ Screenprint
Price: $45

Tagged , ,, The Invaluable Resource For Print Collectors

Expresso Beans is an art collector’s community resource that provides a wealth of information about graphic art including dimensions, editions, medium and technique, ebay auction tracking, past and current sales histories, price averages and much more.

Free membership includes personal collection tracking, buying, selling and trading art, the exclusive EB matchmaker, forums, email notifications, to name just a few.

If you collect posters and prints, this site is invaluable!

Check it out HERE.

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The Art and Making of ParaNorman

From LAIKA, the studio behind the hit film Coraline, comes another marvel of stop-motion animation and creative storytelling. For ParaNorman, LAIKA’s team of artists and animators built and brought to life a miniature town, a horde of zombies, and a quirky cast of characters to tell a tale of a boy with spooky talents who must save his hometown from a centuries-old curse.

Featuring the amazing and detailed artwork that went into the film’s creation—from character sketches and concept art to puppets, textiles, set dressing, and 3-D printed facial models—The Art and Making of ParaNorman ($40) goes behind the scenes to explore the exacting, exciting steps that are achieved frame by frame in this newest LAIKA masterpiece.

The 160 page book with full-color images throughout can be ordered HERE.

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“Batman’s Bane” Illustration By Martin Ansin

One of my favorite poster artist’s, Martin Ansin illustrated Batman and Bane to accompany Anthony Lane’s review of “The Dark Knight Rises”. The image will appear in The July 30th issue of The New Yorker.

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James Bond Skyfall Olympic TV Spot

A new spot for Skyfall debuted during the Olympics’ Opening Ceremony and you can watch it below.

In the 23rd adventure of the longest-running film franchise of all time, hitting theaters on November 9, Bond’s loyalty to M is tested as her past comes back to haunt her. As MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.

Javier Bardem, Dame Judi Dench, Naomie Harris, Berenice Marlohe, Ralph Fiennes, Albert Finney, Ben Whishaw, Helen McCrory, Ola Rapace and Tonia Sotiropoulo co-star.


Los Angeles Time Hero Complex iPad App

Introducing the latest super-stupendous production from the masterminds at the Hero Complex. Head Hero Geoff Boucher and his team of super contributors have put together a mega-magazine stuffed with exclusive articles, interviews, photos and videos. Swipe your way through an amazing universe of fascinating features:

- TV’s 50 greatest sci-fi characters

- Joseph Gordon-Levitt: Gotham’s secret weapon

- Amazing Spider-Man’s Rhys Ifans on his inner reptile

- My Marvel Memories by Jack Kirby’s son

- Kicking glass: Princesses try on action roles

- Riker recalls: Jonathan Frakes on being No. 1

- TV’s ‘Sherlock’: On the trail of Benedict Cumberbatch

- The Ridley Scott exception: Does “Prometheus” prove it?

- Quizzam: Test your knowledge of all things ‘Trek’

- Plus trailers, photo galleries and exclusive videos

You can download the magazine HERE for a mere $0.99.

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Pencil-Top Elephant Sculpture By Diem Chau

Check out this amazing pencil-top elephant sculpture by Diem Chau. Note that all 4 legs and the trunk are separated!


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Todd McFarlane Amazing Spider-Man #328 Comic Book Cover Sells For Record $657,250

Todd McFarlane’s original cover art for The Amazing Spider-Man #328 sold at auction Thursday for $657,250, shattering the record for a single piece of American comics art set last year by a splash page from The Dark Knight Returns #3 ($448,125).

The artwork, showing Spider-Man demonstrating his awesome new powers on the Hulk, is now the single most valuable piece of American comic ever sold at auction.

“This is an earth-trembling cover illustration and an equally magnificent price,” said Todd Hignite, Vice President of Heritage Auctions. “McFarlane’s art brims with the raw energy that sky-rocketed McFarlane to the top of the industry and, now, the top of the auction world.”

The artwork was sold as part of the first portion of the Shamus Collection of Modern Masterworks, a unprecedented collection of late-1980s and early 1990s original comic book art put together by Martin Shamus, owner of a comics and memorabilia shop on Long Island.


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The Cost of Being Iron Man

If you thought it was expensive being Batman, check out’s infographic for the expenses that Iron Man faces. (LINK)

Click on image to make larger

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The Man Aisle At New York’s Westside Market

The New York Post reports that Westside Market, a grocery store in New York City’s Upper West Side, has just launched a “Man Aisle” for their “shopping-challenged” male patrons.

Currently this “aisle” is just an “end-cap”, but it’s chock full of products aimed at men like snack chips, beef jerky, ramen noodles, beer, pickles, Sriracha brand hot sauce, condoms and more.

Westside Market’s COO Ian Joskowitz is quoted as saying, “If you’re going to have some guys over to watch a game, you can pretty much stand here — not move two feet — and get your beer, barbecue sauce, chips, whatever. It’s all right here!”

Westside Market has four locations but, as of this writing, the “Man Aisle” is at the store located on the corner of Broadway and 110th Street in New York City.



POSTALGIA, 80s & 90s Pop Culture Solo Art Show by Steve Thomas

POSTALGIA is a solo art show by artist Steve Thomas featuring his retro-style posters that highlights pop culture icons of the ’80s and ’90s at Ltd. Art Gallery in Seattle, Washington. The opening reception is Saturday July 28, 2012 at 7 PM and the show runs through August 26th.

The first 50 attendees get a special signed show poster from Steve Thomas.

There will be Drinks, Pinball, Music, and of course art!

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Jason Edmiston’s The Hand of Ming Giclee On Sale Friday July 27th

Jason Edmiston’s The Hand of Ming was originally created for Mondo’s inaugural gallery show back in February of this year. The show’s theme was science fiction films, and Edmiston chose to do a portrait of the great cinematic villain from the 1980 film Flash Gordon.

Two versions of the print will be on sale Friday:

- 18×27.5” regular edition of 75 for $75

- 24×36” limited edition of 10 for $150

Follow Edmiston’s Etsy show tomorrow morning around 8am, CST for the drop!


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Kotobukiya Updates The Dark Knight Returns: Batman Vs. Joker ArtFX Statue

I wrote about this in March and now Kotobukiya has posted a production update for their upcoming Batman statue which now includes a sewer inspired display base.

Sculpted by Junnosuke Abe, The Dark Knight Returns Batman Vs. Joker stands nearly 12 inches tall (1/6th scale) and will be available September 2012 for $129.99.

I saw the final rendition of the statue at Kotobukiya’s booth at Comic-Con a few weeks ago and the pictures do not do it justice. It is an amazing sculpture that really captures the essence of Frank Miller’s epic graphic novel.

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Preview “Velvet Paintings For Your Inner Nerd,” A Solo Art Show By Bruce White At Gallery 1988

Here’s a preview for “Velvet Paintings For Your Inner Nerd,” a solo art show from Bruce White, which will open Friday July 27th, from 7-10 PM at G1988 (Melrose).

Bruce will hanging out, ready to talk velvet portrait goodness with you

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