Sunday, December 21, 2014

Reading Comics

I've been thinking a lot about the way I read comics, and about the way that other people read comics. What spawned this was some old Alex Toth Zorro comics. I could look at Toth line work forever. It's beautiful, perfect, but what's frustrating is that I feel that only people who read comics see it. If I were to hand Zorro to someone who doesn't read comics, it would not convince them to read any more. Yet this is one of the greats, one of the best there ever was. This is a guy I wish I could be like.

How is the way I am reading different from how they are reading?

I think readers of comics have to block out a lot of stuff. I can love these comics only by choosing not to see a lot of things. I'm looking at those brush strokes and those blacks. I ignore the story (awful), the dialogue (worse), and just about everything else.

It's a little like watching a movie only for the cinematography, which is something I never do, and I don't know anyone who does. There are lots of movies where all pieces come together, but with comics, it just doesn't feel like it happens that often.

What is the total package comic book?

And also, what am I looking for in a comic book?

Is it really just pretty pictures? Artistic prowess? And if so, why am I spending so much time worrying about the story of my own comics.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Old School Revisitation

There is this group of comics that I drew when I was twenty-four, that I always think about revisiting.

And I've finally started, only this time with my left hand (because my left hand lines seems to match these stories a little better than my right hand lines).

When I sat down to draw these comics ten years ago I thought of myself as a man on a mission. I was frustrated by so much of the comic work that I saw at the time. It felt so tortured and stiff. All I saw were these overworked drawings where nothing was left to chance. It sickened me. I thought everyone was holding their pens too tight.

I wanted to be the Jack Kerouac of comics and just let that ink spatter out. Draw fast, draw faster, don't stop to think, just get it down on the page.

And also, I firmly believed that I was doomed to produce shit in the beginning, so just produce the shit, get it out of the way, and don't worry about it. The next comic, whatever it is, will be better.

I still agree with a lot of those ideas (a lot of cartoonists hold their pens pretty tightly), but there are some flaws in the comics that I produced back then that kind of make them unpublishable. The main problem being that there are just too few panels per page. One of the ideas I had in my righteous head was that readers don't really look close enough at the art, and basically they look at a page and don't even see the drawings. Solution: big simple drawings that they have to pay attention to.

Unfortunately, this results in thirty panels taking up twenty pages. Which is fine, until you start figuring out how to print it.

So I have this pile of comics which I really like.

And I've constantly thought about redrawing them (with more panels per page). But you're not supposed to look back.

But I do look back.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Big Barda Green Arrow

Some days you just find yourself sitting on the couch watching TV and thinking I want to draw Big Barda and Green Arrow.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Monday, September 15, 2014

SPX 2014

A million comics to be drawn and put together in a million ways and a million comics in a million styles to buy. I'd like to get them all. I'd like to draw them all. I'd store them in a giant version of one of those plastic capsule vending machines, but I wouldn't need a quarter. And each and every time I wanted a comic, I'd just turn the wheel and one of the million comics would tumble out.