Storm Arcana

Intuitive Visionary Coach & Founder of Arcana Academy

Tag: David Yardin

Heroic Tarot Tuesday: Major Arcana X-Men, Part II

Storm by David Yardin

2 High Priestess: Storm

Today we continue our look at the Major Arcana through the lens of Marvel’s X-Men comic book characters! Last week we examined Professor X as The Magician.  This week we honor the weather manipulating mutant known as Storm!

Born from the union of an American photojournalist and an African princess, Ororo Munroe was worshipped as a goddess in her native Kenya.  On a quest to rescue his original X-Men students, Professor X recruited Ororo, informing her that she was a mutant, not a goddess, and that the world needed her. Storm decided to accompany Charles saying, “You present a most peculiar argument–yet I sense a deep sincerity in your words…Perhaps the time has come for me to leave the nest at last.”

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Storm Sunday: David Yardin, Part II

giant size x-men 1 recreation by David Yardin

We’ve spotlighted the amazing talents of artist David Yardin once before, but Yardin recently posted some new artwork on the Ororo Munroe/Storm Appreciation Thread on Comic Book Resources in which he recreates the cover of Giant Size X-Men #1 and the pages from when Professor X recruited Storm for the X-Men!  Compare Yardin’s recreation with the inks from the original page below (drawn by Dave Cockrum and inked by Gil Kane).

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Anole by David Yardin

David Yardin Anole

Artist David Yardin always brings his best to the characters he draws and this portrait of young mutant Anole is no exception!  Anole’s Wikipedia entry is an interesting read because it covers in continuity stories as well as behind the scenes information.  Although he is known as one of the few openly gay characters in the Marvel Universe, his creators (Christina Weir and Nunzio DeFilippis)  intended to have him commit suicide after not finding acceptance.  Editorial nixed the idea and had them rewrite the issues.

I’m so glad that that old trope was discarded because popular culture needs more positive role models for gay teens, not less.   Subsequent writers and artists have made Anole’s sexuality just one more aspect of a multi-faceted character, although they have not shied away from incorporating it into the narrative.  In an interesting twist, Anole’s community (before he came to the X-Men) had no problem with him being gay or a mutant until anti-mutant hysteria spreads to his town, creating problems for the young man.

Just as the writers have invested in making Anole multi-dimensional, David Yardin’s artwork depicts a realistic look at the character.  Make sure you check out David Yardin’s artwork on his Deviant Art account!

Alpha Male: Northstar

David Yardin Northstar

Northstar (Jean-Paul Beaubier) debuted as a member of Canadian super-team Alpha Flight in Uncanny X-Men #120.  He is now a full-fledged member of the X-Men and is also one of the first comic book characters to be openly gay.  Whether he is the first or not depends on whether one counts creator intent versus actual in-comic revelation.  Creator John Byrne has said that he meant for Northstar to be gay from his inception in 1979 (but then Marvel Editor Jim Shooter had a no gays policy in Marvel Comics).  Northstar didn’t actually come out until 1992 in Alpha Flight #106.   The portrait above is by extraordinary artist David Yardin.

Northstar John Byrne

Comicvine has a intensive summary of Northstar’s history, comics fan Eric A. Diaz waxes rhapsodic about the mutant speedster on Gayscape, and Uncanny has a great entry about Jean-Paul (including a costumes checklist).   Above, Northstar looks appropriately pleased with himself (the character has a history of being smug) in a fan commission piece by character creator John Byrne.

John Byrne Northstar457

This illustration by John Byrne was used for Northstar’s entry in The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (an invaluable resource for learning about the decades of Marvel character history).  You can also read more about Northstar and the behind the scenes stories regarding his depiction at Lonely Gods (scroll down until you see Jean-Paul).


P. Craig Russell created this amazing artwork for a 1994 Marvel Swimsuit Special.  Strangely enough, the final result was altered before publication. Compare the original above with this image.  The one you see here is more playful, almost a little goofy.  It is rare to see Northstar at ease.  The final result is a more serious portrait, devoid of humor and whimsy.


Joe Phillips shows the sexy side of Northstar in this commission piece from 2009.  It would be nice to see more of this aspect of Jean-Paul’s personality in the mainstream comics.  Tim Fish recently explored Northstar’s personal life in Nation X #2 (and talked about it for Comicus).  Marvel has a great post about it with selected art.

Northstar by Dave Ross

Dave Ross drew a more beefcake version of Northstar, who also looks more contemplative than usual.  Jean-Paul is not usually depicted as thoughtful or deep, but there’s always room for improvement!

Northstar_1_COVER by Dario Carrasco Jr and Mark McKenna

Here’s the cover to Northstar #1 by Dario Carrasco, Jr. and Mark McKenna.  Interestingly enough, Marvel chose not to mention Northstar’s sexuality at all in this four issue mini-series.  I remember being extremely disappointed in this series especially after the coming out hype from the Alpha Flight series.

Northstar and Aurora by Tom Burgos

Aurora is twin sister to Northstar and has an equally complicated character history as her brother.  Their storylines are often about each other (Northstar spent a lot of time searching for Aurora).   Check out this bio about Aurora.  The above image of the French-Canadian siblings is by Tom Burgos.

Mark Brooks Northstar & Aurora 382

Mark Brooks drew the Beaubier twins for X-Men Annual #1.  It was a monumental storyline  for the twins by Mike Carey, restoring them to their most basic character templates.  Check out a preview of the comic on Comic Book Resources.

Mark Brooks Northstar & Aurora prelim 380

Another Mark Brooks portrait of Aurora and Northstar, this one a preliminary sketch.

Northstar by j. bone

Toronto based illustrator and comic book artist J. Bone draws an awesome Northstar!  Jean-Paul looks beefy, but streamlined; cocky, but also heroic.  I say let him draw the character regularly.  Fans of more manly beefcake should check out Bone’s blog Man’s Adventure.

For more about gay characters in comics check out this Comics Alliance article, Prism Comics, and the Gay League!

Storm Sunday: David Yardin

Savage Land Storm & Rogue by David Yardin

Today the spotlight falls on David Yardin who, judging from his artwork, must have a special place in his heart for our Weather Witch!  This piece featuring Storm and Rogue in the Savage Land is gorgeous!  I am loving the details from the clothing to the fern to the dinosaur lurking in the background.  Click on any image to see it larger.

Storm & Nightcrawler by David Yardin

Storm and Nightcrawler on the offensive!   Such great expressions!  Check out David Yardin’s Deviant Art profile for more of his work featuring many Marvel characters!

Storm by David Yardin

David Yardin’s artwork graces the recent covers of X-Factor and he drew the absolutely breathtaking issue of X-Men Origins: Gambit.  He also drew the cover for X-Men: Worlds Apart #2 and many Ms. Marvel covers.  And Ken Kneisel (and other White Queen fans), you should click here.

Storm by David Yardin

David Yardin also drew the Storm mini-series written by Jerome Dickey and What If? X-Men Deadly Genesis.

Storm by David Yardin

Yardin’s artistic contributions to the Marvel Universe are far reaching!  While researching him, I discovered he designed one of my favorite Wolverine: First Class covers!

Storm Con Sketch by David Yardin

This convention sketch has me green with envy.  Storm’s profile is simply perfect!  Marvel, give Storm a solo ongoing and get Yardin to pencil it!  ‘Nuff said!

Stormwatch: X-Titles Solicitations for Marvel Comics, October 2009


Seriously, I think this is amazing.  Dynamic, expressive, fun, kinetic, cute, I could go on and on….thanks to Comic Book Resources for October’s Advance X-Solicitations for this gem.   This cover is by Skottie Young and it’s so fabulous I wish he were doing the interiors, but I will most definitely give Jacob Chabot a chance to win me over as well!

108_UNCANNY_X_MEN__FIRST_CLI have been meaning to blog about this new title, but it keeps slipping my mind.  I like it okay enough so far.  It’s weird for me to read retro stories that fit in between the classics, but this is the only comic in which you can read about Banshee and Phoenix, so I will be following it slavishly.  Cover by Roger Cruz.

119_X_FACTOR_50Really looking forward to celebrating X-Factor’s fiftieth issue!  Look at this yummy cover art by David Yardin!  This is the most motley group of mutants in the titles these days, but I love the disparity of powers and personalities at work here.  And despite what Rob Liefeld may feel, it looks like Shatterstar will be continuing his relationship with Rictor.  Many thanks to scribe Peter David!

Also shipping in October is Astonishing X-Men #31 which brings superstar artist Phil Jimenez on board with writer Warren Ellis for a six issue arc!

Storm Sunday: Winter Solstice

Today is Winter Solstice! Now is a great time to lend your greatest intention to your priorities! Perhaps the qualities you have been perceiving as “bad” are simply flowers needing sustenance to bloom into amazing assets! Come out of your closet of self doubt and shame let the sun’s rays illuminate your heart! Visualize the rays streaming into your heart and then rebounding back into the world! Be proud! Shine on!

Many thanks to the Cosmic Tribe Tarot for some of the words expressed in the above paragraph. I find this divination tool to be very inspiring and used much of its wisdom in last night’s ritual at the Comfort & Joy Winter Solstice party. I don’t have the book with me right now, so I typed from memory.  I had the most amazing time last night because not only did I get to perform an opening blessing ritual with The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, I also got to be back up girl for Rio’s dominatrix “Policy of Truth” number and I performed Book of Love’s “Flower in My Hand” complete with bubblegum pink dress, curly blond ponytails and lots of flowers (lilies if you must know).  The crowd was so appreciative and full of kind and tenderhearted sweetness.  It’s been my privilege to work with Comfort & Joy for their fundraising events (even though I’ve never been to Burning Man) and I find them to be a stalwart group of fun frolicsome freaks!  They take their good times seriously!  Who knows, maybe they’ll get me to go to a burn one day, but I dunno.  

I must say that before this event I had yet to meet the Sisters that I got to work with and just to soak up their radiance was a blessing!  Those girls know how to trick out some drag!  They must have caboodles full of little gems and things to spirit gum on their faces, because, dear reader, words do not do justice to how scintillating they sparkled in pearls, gems and stones!   They were adorned in fabulous fabrics and lovely rings, necklaces and magical woo!  But I make much ado about something that is quite regular about the Sisters.  Fabulosity is a way of life for them!  

I was very proud of my sisterbrother for bringing the dominatrix drag as she whipped, tied, gagged with an American flag hankie, paddled and otherwise tormented a performer (Hi, Lance!) dressed as George Bush (the rubber mask was truly frightening)!  Rio looked like a combo of Faster Pussycat, Kill Kill and Veronica Lake meets Barbarella!  I hope to have pictures soon!

And a kind faerie told me last night that they filmed my flowerful performance, so when I get a copy of that, I’ll post it to share with all of you stormanticals (stormanticites?  stormantics?).

Today’s image is from the Storm mini-series featuring Ororo and T’Challa falling in love as teenagers.  This mini was written by Jerome Dickey and drawn by David Yardin and Lan Medina.  I chose the image for today because of the tenderness it portrays.  I love the shafts of light illuminating the forest.  The lovers slumber in contentment and dream of all the possibilities that new love can bring.  Let this be a meditation for us on the new year!

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