Paolo Rivera, Gentleman Artist!

I had the unique pleasure of meeting the truly amazing artist Paolo Rivera a few weeks ago at a signing event at Jim Hanley's Universe in Manhattan! Rivera has done a great deal of excellent work for Marvel over the past few years including his very cool origin-retelling project with writer Paul Jenkins: "Mythos".

Paolo Rivera with his sketches!

The sketch he's holding is preliminary work for the covers he did on "The Amazing Spider-Man" issues #615-616, which I reviewed a few months ago here!

Meeting people who have a 'public face' for the first time is a strange experience. You 'feel' like you know them, even though you know you don't. Mr. Rivera was generous with his time and his work: He was sketching for a number of fans while chatting with many others. There were three of us standing there flipping through the sketches he had placed on the table... and talking about them. In front of him. I realized suddenly that although we were just saying "Paolo Rivera is awesome!" we were rather rudely talking about him in the third person. In front of him.

So I apologetically said as much and he immediately said that hearing us right there talking about him was kind of cool as it was at least a sort of physically immediate feedback. Sort of like hearing his blog's post comments read out loud. Like I wrote in the title of this post: Paolo Rivera, gentleman artist.

Let that be a lesson to you: Don't be an idiot like Gorga was, engage with these people at cons and signing events. Treat them with respect but not a damn religious reverence, just like you would anyone else.

Rivera is the artist on the upcoming big (possibly huge) Spider-Man story written by Joe Quesada to run in "Amazing" #637-640 in July of this year. We Spidey fans are dreading it, but for reasons completely unrelated to his art. It's another chance for Joe Quesada to change his mind/give the fans what they want/make sense of a two-year-old groaner of a story. Whether he takes that chance (he's had several already), is yet to be seen. Quesada was interviewed about it here on We're not holding our breath. At least it's going to look gorgeous!

A dynamic figure artist with a sensitive color palette, Rivera really is one of the best talents making comics in the mainstream today! Do not pass up a chance to look at his stuff, read his stuff, or meet him! His bloody brilliant art can be seen on his blog The Self-Absorbing Man!

~ @JonGorga

EDIT (11/28/2o1o):
Oops. "One Moment in Time" was in "The Amazing Spider-Man" #638 #639 #640 and #641.


  1. Hi Jon- I was googling my name this morning (guilty as charged) and came across your flickr account- you had attributed a painting to me, at the NYAA Summer Exhibition, that wasn't mine. Just thought you should know so that the right artist gets the right credit. Also- I know Paolo! We went to undergrad together- he is an amazing artist and an equally amazing person. Thanks.
    David Pettibone

  2. I should take your name off that image then shouldn't I, David! Apologies! The figure work on your site is damn good- strong and dramatic.

    I see my mistake: two "untitled"s... Thanks for pointing it out!

    Funny coincidence and very cool that you know Paolo, he's one of the best.