Friday, December 13, 2013

Fan Friday Winner!

Justin Thomas won a copy of From the Dust #1 this week! Congratulations Justin!

To claim your prize, just message the From the Dust Facebook page with your mailing address and we'll get it sent out to you!

Contest Rules >>

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Why I'm Creating From the Dust and Who It Serves

Let Latter-day Saints Decide If They Want High-Quality Family Media

A couple of weeks ago I launched the From the Dust Kickstarter Crowdfunding Campaign. The campaign is all-or-nothing. If I do not reach $14,000 by Christmas Day I will get none of the money that has been pledged and From the Dust may not be able to accomplish its ambitious goals.

For a broad view of what I am trying to accomplish, please read this interview by Ben Crowder of The nutshell of the interview says that the LDS industry doesn’t create family media, but rather creates targeted media for independent demographics (teen books for teens, Mom books for mom, dad books for dad, kids books for kids, virtually nothing that we can share together like a Disney film.) It also states that I am capable of providing that family media and that it is needed now more than ever - especially internationally. My work is different, it’s innovative, and it requires the opening of the minds of Latter-day Saints to a new medium for family media besides TV series and movies. This “new” medium is the comic book series, reinvented for the next generation of Latter-day Saints. 

Why Comic Books are the Answer

The comic book allows me to provide Disney-quality entertainment at a fraction of the cost. In addition, unlike TV and movies, this entertainment can be translated inexpensively and distributed to families all over the world via the Internet. Comics are the most effective medium to accomplish this. I already have my first issue in Spanish and Portuguese, which covers 85% of LDS Church membership. It will be published for free online in January as a service to the 8.5 million Latter-day Saints that don’t speak English and the over 18,000 international fans of my Facebook page.

From the Dust is Self-Sustaining and Financially Viable

Aside from the artwork, the project is founded upon sound and sustainable business practices, but I do not have the funds in its early stages to get it off the ground. Ultimately, I will need about 4-6 issues published before it become self-sustaining. Until then, I have to get creative to make the project a reality.

International Latter-day Saints Need Media in their Own Language

In the words of Monalisa Cavalcante Buarque of Brazil, who has opened this impressive LDS retail store (the second one in Brazil) just last month:

"We needed LDS media in our own language yesterday. Not in two years. Not in one year. We need it NOW! We're starving out here for quality material and America isn't producing anything that we can use!"

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Fan Friday Winner!

Jenni Floyd is our winner this week! Congratulations on winning a copy of From the Dust #1: The Last King of Judah, 107 pages of educational greatness!

To claim your prize please contact us using private messages on Facebook and send us your mailing address.

Thanks for participating!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

The From the Dust #2 Kickstarter is LIVE!!! Donate! Share!

If you haven't heard, I'm KICKSTARTING #2!

Kickstarter helps me out a ton because if we can raise enough funds I can publish issue #2! I'm working on finishing it now.

I've promised my fans I would have it for them by Christmas and I'm working very hard to make that happen.

In this panel of From the Dust #2, Jeremiah blesses baby Nephi. Their faith calls down the powers of heaven.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Fan Friday Winner!

Michael Shelton won our Fan Friday this week! He got a copy of From the Dust #1! Congrats Michael!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Fan Friday Winner!

Congratulations to Courtney Roberson for winning this week's Fan Friday! She won a "Hope Whispers" poster, 19" x 27" of awesome!

How to claim your prize:
Just message us on the From the Dust Facebook page with your mailing address and we will ship it out!

New week starting now! See Contest Rules:

Friday, November 15, 2013

Fan Friday Winner!

Fan Friday winner is Reyes Tomas who won a copy of From the Dust #1 ($14.99 value).

How to claim your prize: message the From the Dust page directly on Facebook ( and provide us your shipping address. Congratulations! 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Fan Friday Winner!

We had our first winner - Taylor Dracorex Shields! She won a First Fan Kit. Only about 30 left.

How to claim your prize: message the From the Dust page directly on Facebook ( and provide us your shipping address. Congratulations! 

Friday, November 1, 2013

New Fan Friday! Easier, Better, Fannier, Friday-ier!

Why the old Fan Friday didn't work so well...

Sorry guys but the old Fan Friday system where we chose a winner from an email list wasn't working as well as I'd hoped. It wasn't personal enough. There was no back and forth between us, I just had an email and we'd pick randomly from the email list. It wasn't any fun. And who wants a contest that is impersonal and not fun? NOBODY! So...introducing the 


From the Dust Fan Friday Rules

In a Nutshell:

It's no longer based on email subscription, but rather participation on our Facebook page.

One winner is chosen each Friday from fans that have Liked AND Commented ANY From the Dust Facebook post that week. Each Liked AND Commented post represents one entry in the contest. Multiple entries during a week are possible and encouraged. 

Go here for official rules. (yeah we have that now! Another thing that we found was important).

Bad Juggler, Poor Circus Training

Alright folks. I dropped a few balls while trying to juggle this crazy "Salt Lake Comic Con" and "From the Dust #2" and Inktober sketches and client work and more. Sorry about that. Here's what's up:

The Good

I like starting with good news, don't you?

  • I've got interns now at BYU helping me out. They're all trained. That took some time. They help with inking and painting my drawings. I will introduce them if they stick around, which I hope they do!
  • I'm starting to get the business financials in order. That may not be a big deal to you, but it is if I want to survive my first year! 90% of small businesses fail in their first year. I'm not going to be one of them! If I make it to February 1, 2014 (and I WILL!) then I'll officially have gotten through my first year! Feb 1 is when I published From the Dust #1. At that time From the Dust had just 250 likes on Facebook! Now she has over 18,000!!
  • I'm hard at work on #2 and it's looking great! See?

Don't worry it will be full-color! These are just the pencils/inks.

The Bad

  • I failed on Fan Friday. We haven't had a winner in weeks! But I'm fixing it with the next post!
  • I failed on Inktober. I have about 5 more sketches to do and others to scan and post. Will do so soon! I finish what I start! Just late sometimes.

The Ugly

There is no ugly! Except this guy.

Next post: FAN FRIDAY!!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

More Inktober Awesomeness!

Mosey on over to our new Tumblr and see more Inktober sketches!

No erasing. No color. No digital editing of any kind. Pure ink! I feel this kind of drawing is the "true test of manhood" for an artist.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Come Listen to the living Prophet!

Just as Lehi or Nephi would have looked to Jeremiah as the living prophet of their day for guidance, we look to living prophets today.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Reflections on Salt Lake Comic Con - From our Fans

(Shared with permission)

From Mic Shelton:

"I wanted to take a minute to tell you how I have felt since talking to you. Libby and I stopped and looked out over the room one last time on our way out and we are just so impressed at the glorious creativity mankind has inherited from our Creator. There was such an amazing positive feeling throughout the entire gathering that even the things that might have seemed vulgar or morbid just seemed like another expression of the miraculous power of the human mind and the human spirit. I was amazed, delighted, touched, and soothed by much of what I saw yesterday, but I wanted to let you know that none of it was more inspired or inspirational to me as your little booth and the spirit you carried as you genuinely try to bless the lives of your customers. I have seen many LDS media projects from Living Scriptures to BYU Television over the years, and I find your approach to be carefully considered and carefully executed. I predict we will see it's effects far and wide. To be honest, it felt almost like your project was the whole reason the first SLC Comic Con happened when it did. I predict this Comic Con is a step towards a new age of LDS media and the public's view of the Church in the media..."

From Nancy Laing:

"I wanted to say how nice it was to meet you and how impressed I was with your Comic. I read it all the way through on the way back home to Idaho Falls and the only disappointment I had was that it ended!! So get busy buddy cuz I can't wait for the next one!! It's worse than waiting for a movie I'm dying to see.
I really loved all the extra education you add. It's such an informative and fun way to educate about the scriptures and I'm so enthralled with the history. I love history and the scriptures but to see it from your unique, fun way, it made it so much more enjoyable.
I'm showing it to all my friends!!
I love the animals and your art. One thing I can't figure out is what animal Lehi and Laman are. I can see that the rest of the family are cats but maybe you can enlighten me. (We've had family discussions on this one).
So, thank you Michael for sharing your amazing talent for art, and writing, and for giving people such a delightful way to read these incredible powerful stories.  (At times, Scriptures can be boring all by themselves you know).
I'm so grateful for people like you in this world!"

From Dustin Orgill of Digital Hippos:

The stunning art work of Mike Mercer from Spider Comics was one of the most attractive booths out there. From bright colors and amazing design, From the Dust is more than impressive, regardless of the genre or subject. Seriously, even if you don't care about religion or Biblical topics, Mike's talent is a force that has to be seen to believed. Debuting in both print form and iPad app, this series is a breakthrough in more ways than one. Plus, Mike is a super cool guy running a one man show!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Comic Con Giveaway WINNERS & Prints Left!

Over $150 worth of merchandise given away at Comic Con!

We gave away 6 First Fan Kits on the last day of Salt Lake Comic Con! Here is the Jensen family - they're a little excited! They said it "made their day!"

The Jensen Family won a free First Fan Kit at Comic Con! So did 5 other families.

Just a few prints left!

I've had requests about my Comic Con prints and because I left out of town and haven't fulfilled some requests, I'm EXTENDING THE TIME YOU CAN ORDER PRINTS TO OCT 8. That gives me a week after I get back to get your order fulfilled if for some reason you missed the prints at Salt Lake Comic Con

After that any remaining prints will be burned! I only have about 40 prints left, so just a few of each image. 

$8 for 8x10s. Buy 3 and get one free! Contact me directly to order >>

Green-checked prints are available. Red checked prints are not as of this posting (sold out!)

Each print has the special SLCC 2013 (Salt Lake Comic Con 2013) seal! Only about 200 total prints made.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Over 400 books sold @ Salt Lake Comic Con!

We thrashed our sales goals!

I hate worrying about business stuff, but it's necessary if you want to stay in business! We had a goal of 300 books sold and we blew it out of the water! Over 400 sold averaging a book every 3.5 minutes. That's about as fast we could talk!! 

Check out our photos!

Me and my friend Griffin. He runs a dance venue in Provo @ Enliten Bakery & Cafe on Friday nights.

Ronita with Jack! Ronita is good with money. I am not.

The amazing duo - er - trio: Matt, Gollum, and Maria!

Me talking to a crowd of superheroes. We sold an average of a book every 3.5 minutes.

Better picture of the booth coming soon! We had a pro photographer friend drop by and take some.

Yes that is a dinosaur walking down the aisle folks!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

NEW!!! Unique Seal Just for Salt Lake Comic Con!

To celebrate From the Dust's debut into official professional comic book life, I've redesigned all the art prints to include this rad seal:

The Paleo-Hebrew ring reads "Property of Baruch ben Neriah"

Who was Baruch ben Neriah?

For those that don't know, From the Dust uses seals inspired by a real artifact found in Israel - the Seal of Baruch ben Neriah, the scribe of Jeremiah the prophet.

Baruch (BAH-rook, rhymes with Luke) is one of the many unsung heroes of the scriptures. It was his faith and determination that helped Jeremiah's prophecies be heard in the temple, in the throne room, and elsewhere in Jerusalem at the time of Lehi.  I would not be surprised if, when the full story is told (after this life when we die), he contributed much to the writing of the Book of Jeremiah as well as other books of the Old Testament.

In an Old Testament chapter strikingly similar to many sections of the modern Doctrine & Covenants, Baruch is both chastised and promised special blessings by Jeremiah, who is clearly the mouthpiece of the Lord to all the true believers of that time.

Comic Con Booth Update

I have over 50 fine art prints that I have never offered before. All of these will have the special Seal of Baruch on them. To accommodate this multiplication of artwork, I've had to custom-design towers and furniture that can be transported in your average vehicle but assembled to look very professional.

Right now it's a mess.

This is my living room:

I promise to have everything in order by Thursday!!

See you then!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

It's ALMOST HERE! The first ever Salt Lake Comic Con Sept 5-7! NEXT WEEK!

We're Booth #514 - From the Dust - The Book of Mormon Comic

Join 20,000+ of your nerdy friends for three days of bodacity!


Also, we will be at the Provo Farmer's Market  this Saturday from 9am -2pm. Come by and see all the new Fine Art Prints I'll be selling at Comic Con! New art every week!


Friday, August 16, 2013

Why Spider Comics? Spiders are gross!! Part 2 of 2

My best friend, Matt, studies spiders. He specializes in a common but unique spider called the jumping spider (genus salticidae for you science nerds). He's taught me a lot about this cute little oddball of the arachnid world.

They have style.

When I say cute, I mean it. They're adorable.

Yes those big black things are its real eyes. It sports 6 additional, smaller eyes as well. Their vision is unusually keen for arachnids, and I'm pretty sure it makes them better artists. Just look at their fashion sense:

You don't see that kind of pizazz pulled off very often.

They have honor.

Rather than being gutless sissies that set traps (typical spiders) the jumping spider is a noble warrior that hunts down his prey honorably, and then -- you guessed it -- jumps on them! A dual to the death commences, just like a lion and its prey.

They have strength.

One of the chief characteristics of the jumping spider is his tiny size -barely the size of your fingernail (and that's the big ones). And yet packed in him is remarkable speed, agility, and strength. They set a high standard for their counterparts to compete with.

To sum it up:

In a world full of trap-setting, blood-sucking assassins, jumping spiders are the little guys that fight fair and pack a lot of punch.

As a new addition to the comic book industry, we kind of identified with that.

You see? Not all spiders are gross. 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

From the Dust #1 Multi-Touch Submitted for Approval!

At long last, no more scrolls!

Are you tired of carrying around those huge Isaiah scrolls? Does finding chapter 60 cause a huge mess?  Well, look no further! We've got the world's greatest advancement since papyrus!

Introducing the Multi-Touch version of From the Dust, sporting a beautiful back-lit LED display that makes our high-quality, colorful artwork rival the beauty of Egyptian hieroglyphs - nay, it surpasses it!

Perfect for that scriptorian you love so dearly but that struggles under the weight of 10,000 scrolls.

We're just waiting for approval at Apple's iBookstore, then it will be available in the U.S., Canada, UK, Austrailia, and New Zealand for just $14.99 for over 220 beautiful images.

From the Dust #1: The Last King of Judah is officially on its way to the iBookstore!

Check out these screenshots!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Why Spider Comics? Spiders are Gross!! Part 1 of 2

Our company mascot is a destructive, easily-agitated jumping spider. In our current logo you can only see his glowing eyes, but here's an older version.

Our mascot's story is innocent enough. He was once quite cute, until an unfortunate series of events occurred. Here's the story:

Gob Frank Mank Na-Na

A young, struggling alchemist sneaks into his Master's laboratory in an attempt to redeem his pathetic grades, but things go terribly wrong.