Awesome Artists We’ve Found Around The Net: Mike Maydak

Last Updated on July 30, 2021

For years, Awesome Art We've Found Around The Net has been about two things only – awesome art and the artists that create it. With that in mind, we thought why not take the first week of the month to showcase these awesome artists even more? Welcome to “Awesome Artist We’ve Found Around The Net." In this column, we are focusing on one artist and the awesome art that they create, whether they be amateur, up and coming, or well established. The goal is to uncover these artists so even more people become familiar with them. We ask these artists a few questions to see their origins, influences, and more. If you are an awesome artist or know someone that should be featured, feel free to contact me at any time at [email protected].This month we are very pleased to bring you the awesome art of… 

Mike Maydak

Artist Mike Maydak started in the sequential art industry. Creator of 1782: The Year of Blood, an historical adaptation of frontier life, and Slimbone, a nationally distributed comic strip, Maydak also illustrated a run of Blackbeard Legacy. Turning his skills to “fine art”, Maydak fused an impasto impressionism with a graphic comic flair, focusing on architectural structures and pop culture icons. His work has been featured in 2012 Artist’s & Graphic Designer’s Market and on public television stations across the world via his appearance on Bluegrass & Backroads and Arts Bridge via PBS. He has published two collections of his works, MAYDAK Volume 1 and MAYDAK Volume 2. Maydak was the recipient of the Al Smith award in 2007.

JoBlo: What got you started as an artist?

Maydak: I was always around it and dabbled a little. My mom was an artist, commercial, and fine. In high school, I worked for a company that made preprinted comic book art boards for smaller publishers and individual comic artists. So as early as 1996 I was getting familiar with the comic con circuit as I traveled with them to sell the boards. The cons’ economic model really shaped how I went about things when I started as an artist.

It wasn’t till college I got really serious about becoming an artist. Took about 7 years to get a ton of bad art out of my system and occasionally make something good. I mainly sold work directly to buyers, at comic cons and local festivals. I had a handful of experiences trying to work for a publisher or get into a gallery, B to B type work. I generally found it to be a misdirection of energy. 

Who were some of your favorite artists growing up?

Hard to say. I can’t really remember if I paid attention to specific artists as a kid. I know I liked Boris Vallejo, Larry Elmore, and a bunch of other Dungeon and Dragon type artists. I initially tried to immolate artists like Frank Cho, but my interest did a 180 when I found Alphonso Azpiri. Heavy Metal Magazine introduced me to the Euro styles and I loved them. 

Azpiri was actually at a show I did, Emerald City 2008. I basically talked myself out of trying to meet him. My table was next to Arthur Suydam and Azpiri came over and shot the shit with him for an half an hour. So I did get to meet him as a fly on the wall. 

Who do you really dig these days, follow on Instagram?

As far as Instagram, Gareth Davies, Ian McQue, Carla Bosch, and Kilian Eng, are my flavors right now. The last comic books I read were the Coda series, amazing. The artist is Matías Bergara.

What advice would you have for budding artists today?

Have a healthy sense of denial. And network and play politics. I have not and it’s probably my weakest area of my career.

What should we be looking out for from you in the future?

Been working on a new book. It’s a concept book disguised as a travel book, trying my hand at world building. It has a DnD and steampunk feel, almost could be a campaign setting as well.

Being a fansite, we have to ask you… What are some of your favorite movies/TV shows of all time?

Conan the Barbarian with Arnold. Made be start doing push-ups. Also, I think Sunshine by Danny Boyle is my favorite movie that seemingly no one has seen. Great bad guy in it, pure evil. Favorite TV SHOW, maybe The Wire. Loved how you could get behind any of the characters. 

Scroll down to check out some of our favorite art pieces from Mr. Maydak as we continue to follow his journey across his Website and social media hubs: Instagram / Facebook / Etsy / Kickstarter.  


Captain America

Daenerys Targaryen

Darth Vader

Daryl Dixon 


The Eiffel Tower

Iron Man

The Joker


Mega Man

Princess Leia and R2-D2

The Punisher


The Statue of Liberty





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