Ed Dyer is a Sydney based artist who specialises in creating amazing caricatures of both famous fictional characters (like Ironman, Venom, Blanka from Streetfighter, and many, many more) as well as normal everyday superheroes like you and me who might just happen to visit one of the Pop Culture Conventions he attends.
I first met Ed in November, 2014, when I attended my first Pop Culture Convention (ever), Supanova Brisbane. I was also publishing my System Series novels for the first time and planned to sell them at my very own stall in the Artist’s Alley.
In preparation for my big debut, I decided to have a bit of fun and Cosplay a character from my first novel, ‘Jupiter – Illusions of Faith‘. In this case, I Cosplayed one of the heavily armoured Security officers who maintains order aboard energy sumps – city-sized ships that roam Jupiter’s upper atmosphere and process the Hydrogen for energy.
Well, my stall happened to be situated across the aisle from Ed’s and so I couldn’t help but notice his awesome work. I’m not ashamed to say that I immediately fell in love with his cool, cartoony style and was impressed with how he managed to capture the defining features of his many, many subjects.
Anyway, after introducing myself (Ed is a super nice guy), I asked if he would be willing to draw a caricature of me in between his other commissions (as I would be far to busy to sit for him), and he very kindly agreed.
The result? Well, see for yourself…
How cool is that?! I was blown away with the awesomeness that was Ed’s work. He’d really captured the future fantasy elements of my costume and it even looked like me. I very gladly paid Ed for his awesome work (as we should all do when dealing with artists), but little was I to know that my brush with such awesomeness was only just beginning.
It was a year later and I had a new book to sell, ‘Pluto – Secrets Within’, and so I decided I needed a new costume too. This one was more of an armoured spacesuit, which is worn by the team of mercenaries who are sent to investigate Pluto. It took a little longer than the last to make as I wanted to go BIG for this one, but it turned out great.
I’d also made a costume in the meantime for my beautiful wife, Cassandra. Her costume related to my first book, ‘Jupiter – Illusions of Faith’. She was one of the cybernetic terrorists trying to take down the energy sumps (because they believed energy sumps were destroying indigenous alien beings called heavangels… but that’s another story).
We looked great together (even if I do say so myself) and when I saw Ed again, I went up to say Gday. He loved the costumes and was once again kind enough to agree to creating one of his masterpieces with us as the subjects.
He even used texta pens to add colour this time and the results were amazing. I really love this one and you can probably see why below…
Again, I very happily paid Ed for his awesome work and was SO glad I’d met him back in 2014.
After that last commission, it was hard to imagine Ed being able to top himself. In fact, it seemed up to me to create a new costume worthy of his talents. Luckily for me, I had another book ready to sell in 2016, ‘Mars – Twin Prophecies’ and, of course, I just had to have a new costume to go with it.
This one (again) took a little longer to make than the last, mainly because I added a bit more detail. In this case, my costume was of a ‘survival suit’, which is more about adventuring on Mars’ surface than it is about protecting yourself in battle. You know, shielding yourself against the cold, radiation, and general lack of air that would otherwise kill you if you decided to go hiking on Mars.
This time, Ed didn’t quite have enough time to finish the pic (totally my fault, I asked him late on the 1st day and he was, not surprisingly, super busy doing other commissions), and so he VERY kindly said he would take it with him and finish it at home. I had no qualms about this, because at the very least I knew I’d see him at other conventions and I also knew that no matter how long the wait, it was definitely going to be worth it.
In fact, it actually turned out to be a huge bit of luck for me, because Ed didn’t just take it home to finish, he also made the pic into a digital version and took it to another level entirely.
Don’t believe me? Well check this out…
I know! Incredible, isn’t it? Apart from being another GREAT caricature of me in my costume, the digital painting and colouring Ed used here was nothing short of EPIC. Even the added detail in the background is great and just makes the whole thing even more incredible.
Oh… and did I mention we got Ed to immortalise Rowan’s first cosplay?
And who could forget my first, full-face prosthetic cosplay. Can you guess what it is? That’s right! A Plantim from Jupiter – Illusions of Faith.
And last (but certainly not least) Ed got to draw Cass again. This time in her own custom piece with a bad@ss armoured vehicle in the background. This cosplay was another Mars-based ‘survival suit’, from ‘Mars – Twin Prophecies’.
I truly love Ed’s work and can’t wait to see the next caricature he does, because you can bet when I have a new book and a new costume next year, Ed’s stall will be one of the first I visit.
So if you’re at all interested to see what you look like as a caricature or you just want to browse Ed’s other great works of art, check out his website…
…or just visit his stall at any Australian Pop Culture Convention. He is at most of them, most of the time, sharing a double-stall with his good mate Josh Spencer (another insanely talented caricature artist) so make sure you go and say hi, get your face immortalised by Ed or Josh, and tell them Kynan sent you.
You can also follow Ed on instagram @EDTMDYER to keep up to date with his latest work, or check out his other, other website…
So there you have it. Definitely worthy of the ‘cool stuff’ part of my website. I’ll just finish with a quick reminder of what the costumes looked like.
Wishing you and your imagination all the best,