Humph! I’m not sure what to complain about. Normally, at this time of year I would be wallowing in a pool of my own sweat- wondering when the terrible, horrific, unyeilding humidity (I really dislike humidity mixed with heat) would subside and I could just return to my normal cranky self sans-the perspiration. Aside of what was a week high temps, New York had a long wet summer- Which- I have to say is worse- especially when you’re from Oregon and they had a spectacularly sunny summer. So- humph!
Oh- we’ve started put together the next Rabid Rabbit– Tune into this station for more on that later- here’s the pencils I did for Issue#5 centerspread- based on a Layout by Paul Hoppe– then inked by S.Y.Choi, and finally colored by Ben X. Trinh–
I don’t usually “ink” my drawing digitally- in fact, other than retouching hand drawn images- this may be my first digitally inked image. It obviously has it’s pros and cons- but I don’t think it was any faster than had I just done it by hand- that may just be the need to practice- but nothing beats the lovely textures and touches of hand drawing!
I’ve been knee deep in historical research- whether it be for the Tubman book or the Lighting Roy Sullivan story I’ve been creating and sometimes that backs up the mind into a creative corner that explodes onto the sketchbook page as this silly gentleman.
As I’ve had to spend most of my time either a) drawing storyboards or b)writing manuscripts, so my itch to draw “new” comics is driving me bonkers. So I’ve decided since I haven’t the time to write/draw three graphic novels at once(I’m writing two- well one manuscript is finished and at the publishers- made it to the final editor… pray for me!) I’m trying to put together a collection of short comics by next Stumptown. That collection will focused an all time favorite of mine- non-fiction comics. These are the first two pages of one of the longer stories in that collection, the truly strange and sad story of Roy Cleveland Sullivan.
A couple of years ago I started a comic series based on the life of the pre-American Civil War Abolitionist John Brown. I finished the first chapter and put it together as a comic book so I could see if anyone was interested in publishing it. Well, I had a very good response from everyone I showed it to and the it literally was the source that lead me to writing and drawing “Gettysburg, the Graphic Novel“. After Gettysburg I had intended in returning to it and completing another chapter-but- always a but, John Brown was a controversial figure, which some consider a hero and others a terrorist. In other words it is a hard sell, especially for an unknown artist to boot. So I wrote some other things- (which so far so good! keep your fingers crossed for me!) Currently I’m writing a graphic novel on Harriet Tubman- She and Brown were friends and fellow militiant abolitionists. John Brown was an important figure in Tubman’s life and she equally in his- He referred to her as “General Tubman”. In “Gettysburg” the townsfolk solemnly sing “John Brown’s Body” outside of Lincoln’s window the night before the address. Brown will be featured in my Tubamn book- eventually he’ll appear in enough of my works to warrant his own graphic novel. Until then I’ll just keep doing books that feature him. Since I’ve been writing so much it’s been nice to revisit these old pages and massage the art work a bit and sharpen the script- and add some pages here and there. Presented here are the first three pages in which I’ve added grey tones to. Obviously these pages are not “action-packed” in fact they are a slow opening- I’ll add more as I finish them.
Tonight I attended a discussion/talk of with comic creator David Mazzucchelli at MoCCA conducted by by Dan Nadel of Picturebox. It’s no secret to anyone that I’m a huge fan of Mazzucchelli’s work from his early superhero stuff to his most recent book, the incredible- jaw-dropping Asterios Polyp (I cannot recommend strongly enough getting this book). So much was I an enthusiast of his work that I was exceptionally lucky when he agreed to be my graduate thesis advisor at SVA. I was pretty lost in grad school- I had been a professional illustrator for years but really wanted to draw comics but I wasn’t sure exactly how to do that (it’s the reason I was there). David patiently and expertly guided me as I terribly stumbled both in style and storytelling. I still have much to learn about creating comics- but the the foundations He taught me have made all the difference.
I love creating comics- David has been a direct and important influence on my work.
If you’re in New York- or near check out his his show at MOCCA!