Hacking away at the bloody mess…

Hey troops, just checking in to let you guys know that Division issue 2 is still coming for you. We’ve been working on the book furiously and are excited to unleash it on everyone when it’s finally complete. We also have a bit of cool news to share. Although we won’t be attending New York Comic Con 2014 (and therefore the release of issue 2 will be afterward, at another convention), we will soon be releasing a very special new project for everyone to check out. It will be a special behind the scenes and inside the security barriers of The Division of Paranormal Enforcement and its top Agents. Watch this space for that announcement in the next few weeks.

Also, we have been fortunate to have a very talented colleague working on 3D models of the Division Agent Mark 2 Helmet that we debuted at the end of issue 1…. which you can still order online here: http://tommeldesign.com/division/?page_id=208 

Check this out:

This is the awesome work in progress 3D model of the Division Mark 2 Agent Helmet by our very talented friend. Check out his work on instagram @ash_james

This is the awesome work in progress 3D model of the Division Mark 2 Agent Helmet by our very talented friend. Check out his work on instagram @ash_james

This is the awesome work in progress 3D model of the Division Mark 2 Agent Helmet with our design overlay by our very talented friend. Check out his work on instagram @ash_james

This is the awesome work in progress 3D model of the Division Mark 2 Agent Helmet with our design overlay by our very talented friend. Check out his work on instagram @ash_james


We have some really huge things in the works right now and can’t wait to bring you more stuff! If anyone is interested in working with us on Division or any of our projects, feel free to reach out to us via email. We’re always trying to meet new talented folks :)

Until next time!

Ne letiferi vos dormientes deprendant.



Peaces, cheeses, and mushrooms.

Greetings and salutations to all our readers! Mel here!

I’ve been asked to write something… on this blog… about DIVISION! It was more along the lines of, “Geez Mel, would ya just crawl out from under your desk and greet our fans for a quick minute? I promise you can scurry back as soon as you’re done”.

“Just say a few words so that people know you exist”.
“I’ll massage your hands every weekend for a month”
Okay okay, but on a slightly more serious note, Division is a project that I’ve been swimming in for a good 2 years now. An intense swim across a deep black ocean of latex and vinyl, razor sharp heels, endless bullets and gnarly creatures. Hells yes.
Designing some of the characters for this world was a dream. I had never really had the opportunity to work on a project at this level. It’s usually something more along the lines of helping somebody else out with their own set ideas. So it was a real pleasure and a total rush to sit down with Tom and Josh and brainstorm what all these guys and gals look like, what they do, what they eat, what they wear, how they fight, etc. I can’t really tell you how exciting it is to put creative minds together to come up with a dope ass world. For me, this is what it’s all about and what gives me the drive I need to push all the way to make it happen.
Now, I’ll be straight with you and say it was not easy to finish that bad boy up. Working all those late hours for so long… it does things to you. Makes you crawl under your desk and curl up with your cats for a quick nap. Makes you not give a fuck about what you look like going out into the world. It does things to you. But when it’s all done, and you look back at it all… all you could say is helllllllll yessssssss. Now I’m off to bed for a few months.
I absolutely LOVE this comic. I LOVE this world. I LOVE these characters. They’ve become a part of me, and maybe a little of me has seeped into them. Just a little ;)
Division chomp!
Favoritest character of all? TRIAL of course!
Fiction’s cool too, hehe. But it’s nice to see a badass lady pretty much running the show. She was definitely one of my favorites to draw.
Trial - "the baddest b!itch in Division"
I’m super freaking proud of Issue 1 and can’t wait to see what Tom does with Issue 2! It’s sure to be even more amazing! I’ll be taking a break from Division for now and focusing on my own little project entitled The Realm of REM. But I’ll be back! (~accruing cheese points~)
A HUGE thank you to all of you who’ve supported us through the years. You all are a really big part of the reason we push so hard.
Peaces, cheeses, and mushrooms.
~ Mel ~
Mel Under
(yes, I work under my desk. thank you.)

New York Comic Con ReCap!

New York Comic Con 2013 was this past weekend and it couldn’t have been more amazing!!! Such great people and positive energy swirling around everywhere, we were literally in a cloud of love :)
Thank you so much for your support and interest in the work we do. You are the reason we create and turn our macabre midnight musings into consumable art forms.
This year we debuted our Issue #1 of Division, our original IP that is being released as a graphic novel in single issues and eventually collected volumes. We have lofty aspirations for this story so stay tuned for updates on the many new avenues we will be exploring.
We also had brand new artwork and a special sneak peak booklet for Mel’s story “The Realm of REM”. We had brand new character illustrations and paintings as well as a darkly lovely teaser book featuring a story excerpt for added flavor.
So many amazing fans, friends and costumed characters visited us at the convention and made our weekend truly unforgettable. We spent time with fellow artists, aspiring creators and a wide assortment of art enthusiasts, sharing knowledge, stories and future aspirations. We count ourselves as truly fortunate for the opportunity to meet people like yourselves who serve as a constant source of inspiration and drive for us to continue putting our all and everything into creating new worlds, characters and experiences. For that, we thank you from the deepest parts of our hearts.
As a special gift for everyone who came by and showed us love, we’re going to give some back. For the rest of this week, you can get 20% off any art print order placed on our Etsy shop for $35 or more. Just enter the code:NYCC20 at check out.  All prints are done on our heavy weight velvet fine art paper with archival inks (these prints out-live humans!). We strive for the highest quality possible for our images and their lifespans. Just read this excerpt from an email we got yesterday:
“The art print I picked up at your booth was by far my favorite purchase of all of comic con. I cannot stop looking at it. I wish you every success and hope to see more of your work in the future.”
Clearly our fans are the best fans ever and we are truly blessed to have such amazing people like you to work for :)
And to close out this little update, here are some of the many friends, fans and lovely faces (and bodies) we enjoyed this year in Artist Alley.
- Tom


“The Division of Paranormal Enforcement (a super-elite special operations and law enforcement agency) has had its top agent ambushed and killed. Bitten and left for dead, agent Fiction is turned into “Neo-Mortem”: one of the undead. Now living again as one of the very things he had spent his entire career battling, and with his entire agency hunting him down, he has no choice but to traverse the underworld seeking revenge against his attacker and turning his back on everything he once believed in…”



Order a copy of the New York Comic Con 2013 debut success DIVISION Issue #1.

Original Story by Tom Kirrane Martinez

Written by Josh Breidbart

Line art by Melissa Martinez

Coloring and Cover Art by Tom Kirrane Martinez


The First Finish Line

After two years of development, Division Issue 1 is complete and being printed at this moment. My nose buried so deeply into planning, painting and preparing the story, I’ve almost forgotten what it felt like to not be working on it. A small team of absolutely insane people poured their blood, sweat and tears into this thing and hopefully there’s some sort of automatic voodoo spell from all that combined passion, that it’ll come out awesome and people will love it as much as we do.

I hadn’t updated this blog for the later part of the summer because I was laid off from my day job (along with a large group of equally unfortunate designers) and had to spend every waking minute between looking for work, interviewing, art tests, applying and Division. I couldn’t come up for air and I figured it would be ideal to wait and post again when the book was done. Well, here we are and I can hardly believe it. Although I’ve yet to hold a final printed issue in my hand, the feeling of accomplishment started pouring through me as I uploaded the file to our vendor. The thought of no longer frantically rendering pages into the wee hours, was a profoundly complex combination of elation and sorrow. Yes, sorrow. How sadistic can one be you ask? Apparently, “very”. I was longing to keep working on the book, when in fact the sheer strain of the labor over these last months nearly brought both my wife and myself to the brink of insanity. Now, the realization that the book has grown up and is ready for a life of its own, beyond our screens and imaginations, has set-in. It’s time for our baby to take it’s first steps as a supernatural noir action comic.

The artwork and story are really something. I’m immensely proud of it and eternally grateful for the hard work and talent that Mel and Josh poured into it. Zack came into the picture and offered his comic expertise to letter the book for us and that was a real life- (and sanity) saver. The reason we worked so hard on this both visually and cerebrally, was because we are readers too. We love comics, television, movies and games. We live in the stories and become one with the images. We wanted to create something of our own that could be that much of a reality and experience for others. Most importantly though, we didn’t want it to disappoint. There have been so many times I’ve opened a graphic novel because of it’s gorgeous cover art, only to be sadly disappointed by very uninspired and quickly executed interior artwork. I never want anyone to have that feeling opening one of my books. My goal is for readers to be enticed and lured by the cover, to then open the book and be consumed by the interior. I want you to devour my story, while my world devours you and you become one with it.

This Friday, we’ll be no longer selling the preview book. For anyone that grabbed Issue #0, thank you! and hold on to it, because maybe one day it’ll be a collectors item ;) Division Issue #1 will officially debut at New York Comic Con, exclusively for sale at our table in Artist Alley which is Table W2. If any of you visited us last year, we will be quite literally directly across from where we were last year. Easy, no? We’re really excited for the Con this year because not only is Division and a whole heap of new art debuting, but Mel will have a special brand new item from her Realm Of Rem story with lots of awesome goodies to check out. So, i highly recommend you stop by our table, browse our wares, maybe buy some art, shake our hands, give us a hug, come out for a drink and celebrate us crossing our First Finish Line.

Ne letiferi vos dormientes deprendant…


Division Issue #1 Cover Art and Release Date!!!

The time has finally arrived! Here’s a look at the brand new cover of Division issue # 1 debuting 10/10/2013 at New York Comic Con! The issue will also be available for online purchase on that day, but if you want to meet the creators and get a signed copy, you’ve got to come to the con!

The brand new cover image for Division issue # 1! Coming 10/10/13

The brand new cover image for Division issue # 1! Coming 10/10/13

This cover is a completely different design from the special edition teaser that we have out currently. You can pick up a signed copy of that right here: Division Issue #0 The Issue #0 preview won’t be available after the release of Issue #1 so if you want to have both covers AAAnnnd all the cool features of the teaser like: the artists signatures, a copy of the raw script for the sequence in the back and an exclusive look at the preliminary opening action sequence of Divsion, you’ve got to pick this up. It will also wet your appetite, tickle your bloodlust and give you a taste of the world of Division until the first full 27+ page book is out in October.

If you’re wondering what will be in store, here’s a look at a colored (unlettered) panel from the full issue.

1 panel detail from the interior of Division issue #1 coming 10/10/13

1 panel detail from the interior of Division issue #1 coming 10/10/13

October may seem a long way off, but we have some special plans in store up until then so fear not. In the meantime, pick up issue #0 and keep an eye on this blog because we will keep posting more updates with art samples, a contest to get your hands on issue #1 BEFORE it’s October release date as well as links to resources and other cool stuff.

Here’s one cool video to check out. It really spotlights (see what i did there?) how important lighting and lighting direction is for artists and photographers/filmmakers. So much changes with lighting it can literally make or break a work of art depending on the attention paid to it.


That’s all for today. Like I said, short and sweet. Happy Friday to everyone. Good vibes, prayers and well wishes go out to the people of Boston and anyone affected by the recent senseless violence.

Until next time, share this page, share the word and stay tuned for another update soon.

ne mors capere vos dormientes



BACK FROM THE DEAD! With a Vengeance….


Whew! We’re back. Finally! The Holidays were a lot of fun. Unfortunately upon our return, we caught the flu… Then got better! Then got a stomach virus…. Then got better! and BOOM! HERE WE ARE! Finally rested, strong, healthy and diving deeply into work on Division.

Mel has been blazing through the remainder of the issue. She’s churning out line art like nobody’s business. When she collapsed from fatigue this morning, we dragged her off to bed and then raided her computer to sneak a sample to you! So here have a look at one of the thumbnail sketches from somewhere in the second half of issue 1. It’s just a sketch so the final product will be a far cry from this carnival of generic Tom-like figures.

A small sample from the second half of issue 1

A small sample from the second half of issue 1

While Mel is hacking through the jungle of interior pages, Tom is hard at work planning the cover art for the issue. He’s been tossing some ideas around with Mel and cranking out dozens of thumbnail sketches to vet compositions and hone overall ideas. While he went for a 3am snack, we were able to pull one of his thumbnail sheets for you to check out some of the ideas he was working with for the cover!

some rough cover concept thumbnail sketches

some rough cover concept thumbnail sketches

Still no winners but a couple more sketches and something good ought to shake loose.

Aside from working on Division Tom and Mel have also been working on some other interesting side projects (yes that’s aside from Division and working full-time designer/illustrator day jobs).  Mel has been helping her Realm of REM novel blossom into an even more amazing universe of fantastical and macabre adventure. Maybe we’ll have a peek at some of her development materials on that project in the near future?  Tom recently completed a character concept painting for writer Josh Breidbart’s new writing project “Peril and Perish”. You can check out a sample of it here: http://joshbreidbart.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/peril-and-perish-teaser/   Tom’s piece is of the main protagonist Peril. Take a look!

Character Concept Design of Peril from Josh Breidbart's script Peril and Perish

Character Concept Design of Peril from Josh Breidbart’s script Peril and Perish

Well, we really hope you’ve enjoyed this brief update and news of our return. We will post more treats in the coming days. For now, it just feels good to be back, to be productive and in the thick of it with Division. It’s a world we’ve been living in for some time now, and we’re all very excited to start sharing it and inviting you in.

Until next time!


Happy Holidays – taking a breather

Hey again!

Happy Holidays (if you’re celebrating one at some point). We have slowed down a bit while juggling heavy loads at our day jobs, celebrating Tom’s birthday last week (happy birthday Tom!) and fitting in holiday gift shopping sessions. We will also be taking a week to see family and rest our weary heads after this insane development marathon over the last 6 months. Things will be back in full swing after the New Year. Until then, we will try to update the blog from time to time with some little snippets of info and teasers.

Tom has begun some new character concepts while Mel has continued fleshing out the pacing and layouts for the rest of the issue. It’s already looking awesome and we can’t wait to get this into your hands. We promise it’s like nothing you’ve read before. Division combines passion, imagination and the combined professional skills of some of the hungriest lunatics this side of Saturn. Our writer Josh has been making some moves of his own in LA, connecting with comic shops, writing new scripts and grinding his man parts against the most talented people he can find.. So far, no restraining orders, so keep up the good work Josh!

In the coming weeks, check back often because we will begin regular blog updates soon. The goal is two updates a week that will either feature a character spotlight (with art sneak peaks) or a story related blog where we’ll discuss some of the themes that play out in the arcs of Division and it’s inhabitants. We will also be pointing out some colleagues, projects and interesting folks we meet along the way. Today’s update will do just that. :)

While at NY Comic Con 2012, we met the cool dudes from Soul Punk Studios http://www.soulpunkstudios.com/blogs/soul-punk-blog  they came by our table and we got to chatting a bit. They are currently working on their own comic “Road to Pandemonium” Which seems really badass! Check out their tagline: Dante’s Inferno meets Romeo + Juliet in this blood soaked journey from the fallen gates of Heaven to the high capitol of Hell.

Their artwork is pretty great too. Definitely stop on over and check out their Blog and support their Kickstarter campaign because, like us, they are really passionate about their project and are working really hard to bring it to life. You can see some samples and more info on their kickstarter campaign here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/roadtopandemonium/road-to-pandemonium

Lastly, I wanted to just pop in a few memories from Comic Con. How much we enjoyed our time there and the ability to meet so many amazing folks. The response to Division was AMAZING and we really are inspired and even hungrier to get it out to everyone.


He was our First Customer! He has the very first Division #0 that we ever sold and signed. Thanks Micah!!

This is Meg, she bought the 100th copy! WhooHOO!!!

We were also selling our Velvet fine art prints.. MMmmm Juicy ;)

Then Crimson Daggers stopped by and showed us some serious love! Thanks Dan Warren & Dave Rapoza!! http://crimsondaggerblood.blogspot.com/

And.. as with all Comic Cons, Tom did a little sketch on the spot.. It was meant to go to the first person who made an offer, but in the end, Tom wanted to give it to Josh, who was moving away the following week. :’(

That’s it for today folks. Don’t forget to pick up your signed copy of Division issue #0 right here on the blog. Just follow the links on the blog post. And if you’d like to pick up any of our Fine Art prints of our concept art, check out our etsy shop at http://www.etsy.com/shop/tommeldesign

Until next time…


Welcome to the world of DIVISION

Grab a copy of the exclusive “Division” Preview comic including script!

 “…No one to trust, nowhere to turn and being hunted by the very Division he had served, agent Fiction seeks to confront his new curse and avenge his own death…”

By popular demand, we’ve made the New York Comic Con 2012 debut, “DIVISION”  issue #0 Available online!

Grab the preview comic signed by the creator and artists.

This limited-run, high-quality printed preview comic also includes script for sequence in the back! Very few left sadly!


Preview Image