UPDATE: We interrupt our regularly scheduled commentary to mention that an interview I did has just been posted online, announcing the first new Emp project of 2017, the three-issue miniseries Empowered and the Soldier of Love, debuting in February and featuring art by Very Special Guest Artist Karla Diaz. I also yammer on at length about other Emp-related topics, including the failed TV pitch(!) and the current state of the series' somewhat baffling sales figures. Here's the link (to a slideshow, but with plenty of text per slide, I hasten to add).
And now, back to our regularly scheduled commentary!
Gasp! What the devil is going on, you ask? Has Emp quit her job as a superhero to pursue a different vocation? If so, what the hell kind of dress code do they have—or not have—at this library? What plot twist could possibly justify this shocking, outrageously provocative, possibly even fetishistic approach to costuming? Isn’t holding a pencil in one’s mouth like that rather notably unhygienic? Could this potentially be a 70s-era callback to Angie Dickinson's undercover work in the TV show Police Woman, which is a reference that only a handful of readers Of A Certain (Quite Advanced) Age will get? Find out in our next Emp installment, new readers!
Looking at this fairly infamous Empowered page, I find myself primarily thinking, “Man, I drew Emp way too skinny in that ‘full-figure’ shot. In fact, the term ‘full-figure’ seems somewhat inappropriate for this particular figure drawing.” I’m reasonably certain that the models I used as photoreference for her ultra-tight mini—or micro?—skirt weren’t quite this slender, as they had presumably been chosen to, well, fill out the fetish-y articles of clothing in an ample manner.
I do recall a friend of mine, on the long-defunct Secret Empowered (BCC) E-Mailing List that saw early versions of these pages, being rather put out by the lack of subtlety inherent to Emp’s “Sexy Librarian” cosplay. A overall fan of the concept himself, he felt—not unjustifiably, I suppose—that the microskirt and stockings, here, pushed the outfit too far beyond the more restrained and modest eyeglasses-based attractiveness he preferred. Alas, subtlety was not the intention of this cosplay—the not-inaccurate phrase “librarian from a porn video” is used on the very next page, as you’ll see.
Odd hair-related flaw with these Emp images, by the way: She doesn’t have bangs as such, and thus has none of the shorter hair strands seen on these drawings. Not sure, looking back, why I felt I had to draw her with these anomalous locks. Mysterious!
Note, at lower right, that the pile of books supporting Emp’s bosom are all reference tomes from my studio space, with standouts being Remarkable Trees—which is, yes, a coffee-table book chockablock with photos of especially colorful-looking trees—and Lightshow, a collection of paintings by SF cover artist Jim Burns.