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The Anatomy of a Cover …

Dylan Speeg’s cover artwork for MeSseD pt. 2

The 2021 Cincinnati Fringe Festival will feature MeSseD Comics illustrator Dylan Speeg. Judge A Comic Book By Its Cover: MeSseD Comics Cover Art by Dylan Speeg will be part of this year’s Visual Fringe. online and in the exhibit space of … their restrooms!

(Where else would you expect MeSseD artwork to be featured!?!)

Did you know that your typical comic book cover tries to accomplish three things?

The cover of a comic book needs to grab the reader, stick out in a sea of other comics and tell an interesting story. These objectives need to be accomplished in one image.

We invite you to experience the cover artwork of MeSseD comics sans titles, creator credits, taglines, etc. For over five years, main illustrator Dylan Speeg has provided cover artwork for the indie comic book. This exhibit highlights the art and process behind creating a MeSseD comic book cover.

Here is commentary by Dylan Speeg on two featured covers:

Beautiful Dreamer Season 1 Chapter 4 (2016)

“Starface. I wanted to make this look like a Star Trek movie poster. This was an easy one to do. Iconic and powerful. I looked towards my inner Saul Bass,” says Speeg.

Lucky Season 1 Chapter 5 (2016)

Dylan wrote, “Sandshell! I love this one. My buddy Adrienne (Michelle) modeled for this. I love all the little things like the words handwritten on the cleacher and pipe bombs. The bricks on the wall took a long time to get right. Very fun one to do.”

Echoes Season 2 Chapter 5 (2018)

Speeg wrote, “One of my favorites. I liked making what I think sonar would see for this one. Hand drawn but high tech. The colors turned out great. I was inspired by DareDevil.”

In a review, The Comic Book Club Chicago wrote, "I really enjoyed the artwork depicting Lilliput seeing in sound. Very well done."

Meet the Artist:

Dylan Speeg (MeSseD illustrator) was born in 1971 in Cincinnati , wherehe has lived his entire life. He attended The Art Academy of Cincinnati in the early 90s and has worked as a portrait painter and illustrator ever since. He is also a musician in the band Heavy Hinges. His major influences are lurid pulp novel covers and Robert Williams, R. Crumb and other comic book artists. His spray paint stenciled illustrations for The CityBeat “Best Of Cincinnati” issue received the Best Illustrated Series Award from the Cleveland Press Club. He likes to use his hometown Cincinnati and the people he knows as subject matter. He works nights as a bartender and performs stand-up comedy on occasion.

Artwork by Dylan Speeg

Curator: Jay B. Kalagayan

Graphic Designer: Geoff Raker

Editor: Emily Cottingham

Artwork production: Seemless Printing



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