Not much painting lately; work, some personal writing and a looming essay deadline have all curtailed that to an extent, in one way or another.
On the plus-side, I have been doing a ton of reading (not an issue with painting as I mainly read at night and don't choose to paint then unless an army deadline looms large). In particular I have been on a real Avengers kick. I guess this is due to a number of influences, too many to list probably, but it has been enjoyable, and started with a chance sale purchase a few weeks ago.
While picking up my monthly comics, I saw Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes II hardcover on sale, at an astonishing price, so on a whim and being a fan (on and off) of the Avengers for many years, I picked it up. And I am glad I did. The story revisited a classic era of the Avengers I enjoyed in my teens when I got to read a friend's run of Avengers comics (thanks Pete!). That led me to pick up the earlier volume, and also to crack open Assembled! This great little book is an unauthorised collection of essays by many contributors, all of whom are Avengers fans and give reflections and critical opinion on the Avengers comics through the years, some of its key stories, characters and events. It has reignited my desire to revisit some more classic stories that I grew up with (and not just the repositioned versions of A:EMH I & I).
Avengers has always probably been one my favourite comic books. Not in that I would read it when i didn't enjoy it, in fact I have stayed away when I haven't enjoyed the work of a particular writer. But it is a title (these days a group of titles) I always revisit. Any Avengers fans who haven't tried Assembled! yet may find it adds a different perspective to the journey of Marvel's Mightiest Heroes.