"Superbaby" is an original illustration by Dean Trippe, commissioned by us to commemorate the first year of our son Edison's life.
Within minutes of Edison's birth, one of the delivery-room nurses pointed out his 'Superman curl' to us: a floppy long curl planted smack-dab in the middle of his forehead, peeking out from under his little post-op knit cap.
I don't know what became of that curl—it was quickly overwhelmed by the abundant fuzz of his early-babyhood hair. Lost its prominence. But the idea definitely stuck. Edison is, of course, our Superbaby.
I first learned of Dean Trippe through his work on Project Rooftop (credz to Caleb Mozzocco) and was immediately taken with his character designs. I especially like his treatment of kids and, in fact, his anatomical choices in general.
Browse around Dean's portfolio a bit, and you'll see something wholly refreshing in today's comics climate: human-looking heroes. Kids with tummies. Dudes with ever-so-slight paunches and—perhaps most refreshing of all—women with modest... ahem, attributes.
I just knew that Dean would treat this piece—my beloved son— with the respect and craft that he seems to imbue all his work with. I look at this Superbaby and see Edison's pointy little chin, his shock of brown hair and—perhaps most pleasing of all—what his mama calls his 'heart-shaped face.' (I love the footy-jammies costume, too.)
Dean did a wonderful job of paying homage to Edison, capturing his essence but not hewing so close to the photos I shared with him that it wandered anywhere near caricature. (Tho' Dean also does wonderful caricatures—check out the My Name is Earle lineup on his site.)
I love it. I hope you do, too.