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Heroic Design

Art Portfolio of Miko

 

 

As a way of introducing myself, I am Michael Mikolajczyk. Last name pronounced "Michael-Issac". I also sign my artwork Miko, which sometimes is a nickname. A lot of people ask about how I came up with Miko. A comic shop owner made a suggestion to me when I was buying some comics that I should sign my art Miko. I thought it was a great idea and the rest is history.

They found me under a leaf in the mountains of North Carolina on the 14th of October, 1967 and I was reared on a diet of comic books, Dungeon & Dragons, Robert E.Howard, Wizard of Oz, Star Wars and other movies beyond my wildest imaginings and natural wonders, so as you can see I never had a chance.

As soon as I was able to hold a pencil, I began to illustrate and visualize the world around and within me. I have been at it ever since and incidentally I think practice like this is the only way to acquire a powerful and effective visual language in illustration. 

I've done it for 15 years professionally and there's a lot of room for improvement yet. Nothing has daunted my ambition since a toddler to take a blank piece of paper and conceptualize a illustration out of nothing. 

Most of the time with raw talent, this went on for years and years. Until I met Jan Alms, Head of the Commercial Art department at McDowell Tech. Without good friends like comic writer Mike Sawyer, artist Jimmy "Doodle" Lyle and, Jeff Guice and Kenn Mundy, I would have never thought it possible to become an artist. 

I owe a lot of gratitude to Michael Bair cause without him allowing me to sit with him at his table all day on a Sunday at a Con in Hickory, NC in the mid 90's to teach me how to ink with a brush and nibs. To the last Dick Giordorno, Charles Vess, Brian Steelfreeze, Tim Vigil, Bernie Wrightson, Paul Smith, and many others... To them I am grateful they took time help me and teach me at the Cons I visited.

 Last but never least I own the most gratitude to Jackson "Butch" Guice with whom I was an assistant for one and a half years. I learned more from him than any school could ever have taught me. I cannot express how appreciative I am he took time to teach me and help me. It was one the best times of my life.

It was then I succumbed to comic art and illustration. A whole new medium was opened out before my admiring gaze and the urge to soak it all in to create my own was irresistible as well as fun.

I carry out my work with creativity to always strive for the best and I have yet to miss a deadline. I am organized and methodical with a sense of wonder to each project, no matter how large or small. I approach each task with an efficiency and effectiveness that makes me a valuable part of any team.

About me, aside from my art and design, there's very little to say and as much as I like to talk about myself all I can think of to offer is the information that I love chocolate, sweet ice tea, ancient history, movies and the writings of Tolkien, Howard, Lamb and Lovecraft. I despise asparagus and comb-overs. I also sign my artwork Miko, which sometimes is a nickname. And that seems to cover the subject pretty thoroughly.

Thanks for reading.

Freelance Illustrator: 1996 - 2009
Work History:
 
1997 to 1999 : Assistant artist for Jackson "Butch" Guice.
    
     Background Inker on the titles:
        "Resurrection Man" Issue 1 through issue 24/DC Comics
         "Wonder Woman", The Once and Future Story" Graphic Novel/DC Comics
  
    Assisted Penciler on the titles:
        "Toy Story" - Acclaim Comics/Disney
         "Hercules" - Acclaim Comics/Disney
         "Little Mermaid" - Acclaim Comics/Disney

     Independent Comic Work:
    Inker:
         Caliber Comics
         Acclaim Comics
         AC Comics
       
      Other:
        Penciller, Inker, Letterer and Cover Artist (Currently)
         "The Marsh God" - Flashing Swords Magazine/Cyberwizard Productions
        
Role-Playing Games:
      "Web of Horrors" - Web Games
       "Web of Shadows" - Web Games
       "Web of Heroes" - Web Games
       "Celtic Character Series" - Web Games
       "Vulcan Sourcebook" - West End Games
       "Innomine" - Steve Jackson Games
       "Return to Xucthol" (Red Nails Revisited) Conan RPG Module

Magazine:
      "Flashing Swords Magazine" - Issue 7, 8, 9 - Interior illos
       "Flashing Swords Summer Special" - Interior illos
       "Flashing Swords Summer Special" - Painted cover

Book:
       "Oasis of the Moon" Novel  Cyberwizard Publishing (Double spread painted cover)
       "The Tears of Ishtar" ny Michael Ehart - Novel Cyberwizard Publishing (Interior illos)

 

Education

Charles D. Owen High School - Diploma - 1986

Tabernacle Bible College - 3 year degree - 1987 to 1990

McDowell Community College - A.A Graphic Design - 1992 to 1994

Assitant to Butch Guice - 1998 to 2000

Graphic Proficiency

Pre-Press:
    Pre-Flight
    Document Creation
    Document Editing
    Photo Editing
    Trapping
    Imagesetting

Programs:
    Adobe Photoshop
    Adobe Illustrator
    Adobe Acrobat
    Corel Draw
    Adobe Indesign
    Poser

Design:   
    Business Cards
    Brochures
    Logos
    Advertisements
    Newsletters
    Tabloids

Art Technique:
    Digital Painting
    Acrylics
    Oils
    Watercolors
    Pencil
    Pen & Ink

Graphic Design

Atwood Printing - Asheville, NC - 1994 to 1996

  Art Director/Pre-Press

         Duties:
                Overseeing Projects
                Client Relations
                Pre-Flight
                Graphic Design
                 Document Formatting
                Photo Correction/Editing
                Typography
                Typesetting
                Design Layout
                 Imagesetting
                Trouble Shooting

Teaching

Black Mountain Community Center - 1995 to 1997

        Sequential Art
             1 Class for age 6 to 12/weekly
             1 Class for age 13 to adult/weekly

True Blue Art - 1997 to 1999
        Sequential Art
             1 Class for age 10 to adult/weekly