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View Full Version : Security vs Risk


Newjku
01-04-2008, 09:43 AM
I once had a teacher that didn't understand the magic of comics - she just called the picture books as if they were inferior to cartoons or film. I'm starting to see her point now the way things are going. And reading posts on thie forum about how their are rather dodgy characters in the comics business just adds to this sense that the game is up.

Most artist and writers seem to be fanboys. The industry seems rampant with disease from inbreeding. And cookie cutter comics have to be made in order to keep jobs and properties, so they can't take the big risks we wish they could. I accept this.

But I swear the only way to improve things is to recruit people who aren't fanboys and fangirls - the industry needs new blood. But, unless they are comic fans (which adds to the problem) why the hell would they come to the comic industry? That's the problem. They'll probably see it as beneath them - as inferior to film, animation, novels and 'fine art' - picture books.

And if this new blood comes in, the fans who are slaving away to get into comics, as well as the pros, will find themselves with lesser and fewer jobs. So fans may be aienated. And this 'new' blood probably wouldn't stick around for too long.

It just seems to be a situation where no one can win without risking everything. I don't even think the risk is worth it.

And there are people in comics right now who are trying to push boundaries - the may not even be doing that, but they are putting out quality stuff. But between public perceptions, comics having to skew for an older market and an inability to change (and keep up the progress) I no longer feel comics are a place to go to with the big ideas.

Just look at the guy who sometimes posts his scifi comic on here (and also drunk duck). I'm being stupid - can't seem to remember the name, but I've been reading his suff since 2006. He hasn't had much success with it in the comic community, but (apparently) some Hollywood people seem impressed. But Hollywood - that's another story in itself.

Toodles.

Ransak
01-04-2008, 12:07 PM
Interesting points, Newj. I find myself thinking however, that any creative field is likely to be littered with fanboys and wannabes. That's what compels a body to gravitate to a given field in the first place isn't it? Michael Jordan was a basketball fanboy, Eddie Van Halen was a music fanboy once, etc...

If it's not something you love, why choose to do it? There's many ways to make money, if that's all you're after. If the love is there, the "big ideas" are bound to follow, I think. Passion has to be in the mix, or all you have is stilted, derivative drek. And for the people who say all comics are juvenile funny pictures, point em toward Art Spiegelman and see what they say...

Kody
01-04-2008, 12:23 PM
I think creativity in comics is at an all-time high. The innovation and quality is amazing, but no one is making any money. That's a problem because it means we're loosing talented people to other industries. I'm hearing from publishers that sales are starting to creep up a little, but I still believe we'll have to look outside the Diamond direct market to find new readers.

I think comics as a whole will continue to diversity and adapt in different directions, but I don't really see the direct market getting any better for anyone but Marvel and DC. Manga has proven itself in the bookstore market, web comics are booming, so those are two very positive indicators that people still WANT sequential art, they're just avoiding specialty comic shops.

I think the Comics Code did a lot of long-term damage to the industry by establishing the perception of comics as silly spandex books written for exclusively for kids. It's a very hard perception to overcome even though it's no longer accurate.

MARK A ROBINSON
01-04-2008, 12:31 PM
I use to be a fanboy.

I still kinda am...But not with alot of comics today.I hardly read most books out there. I rarely pick up a book to be honest. I'm trying to do that more in the future.I usually get trades.BUt the ones that do get me...Get me good.

But i feel my eyeballs are always saturated with comic-ness.

So i watch porn instead.

It keeps me grounded.

Because sometimes i really don't see much difference between the two beasts.

I see an attractive woman - 9 out of ten i wonder what she might look like naked. I see a car flipped over on the side of the road and people are screaming...I see what that would look like on page 7 of Spider Man.

See what i mean?

As for risk.

Risk is everything. Without risk there is no reward.Plain and simple.

Swing for the fences.

You can push boundaries in comics but you have to be smart about it. Otherwise you might not outlive the end result. Look how many true artists that has happened to.

Famous when your dead and all that. Sometimes with art in general you run the risk of your audience not even being born yet.

That sucks right?

I guess that's why most artists die broke and drunk...Or chop off an ear or somethin'.

AS for new blood...I think now's a great time to get into comics. Half the world is into it now that Hollywood and mainstream television is tapping the vein.The problem might be that there is TOO MANY options.

It can give you head cancer if you sit with it too long. which ultimately leads to procrastination. which usually is followed by unemployment- which tastes pretty bitter.

But the sweet...

The sweet stuff us creating something really rad. Putting it out their and people dig it.You make some cabbage. take it back to that teacher of yours and shove it up her ass.

AS for the drunk duck guy...I say he won one already.He got you. Now he needs you to spread the word.Pop culture is a disease.It's spreads.

The revolution will NOT be televised.

and until then...The beatings will continue until moral improves.

I'm going to sleep.

M.

Nick Kerklaan
01-04-2008, 01:05 PM
But I swear the only way to improve things is to recruit people who aren't fanboys and fangirls - the industry needs new blood. But, unless they are comic fans (which adds to the problem) why the hell would they come to the comic industry? That's the problem. They'll probably see it as beneath them - as inferior to film, animation, novels and 'fine art' - picture books.

I'm sorry, but this is kind of ridiculous. Correct me if I'm wrong, but what you seem to be saying is that what the comics industry needs is people who don't like comics. And it's kind of insulting to me as both a "fanboy" and an aspiring comics writer that you feel that comics right now are somehow uniformly awful. That's not the case, and anyone who says otherwise is either discerning to the point of not liking anything, or not looking hard enough.

I'm disturbed by your implication that comics are somehow so terrible or inferior compared to other mediums that the people who actively love and care about the medium are the ones ruining it. You'd never hear anyone making this statement about novels, or film, or fine art or anything else. Nope, just comics. Where I see people, not just you, making statements like that all the time. Why? Why are comic creators so much more hung up on the apparent "worth" or "respectability" of their medium? Jesus, guys, just make some comics. And read some while you're at it.

Scott Story
01-04-2008, 03:17 PM
Comics are great right now. The last four or five years above among the most creative, original, and risk-taking in history.

Bless fanboys (and girls), by the way. They are a big part of comic's demographics. Feel free to bring in all the new blood you want, but keep the fanboys too!

Newt
01-04-2008, 03:24 PM
Just a bit of clarification on the "fanboy" issue- different people use the term in different ways. I think Newkju meant it in the sense of those fans who are so caught up in the details of the material that they can't see the forest for the trees; these sorts of people, when they become creators, may be excessively imitative or derivative and caught up in self-referential comic-nerd-trivia. This does not describe all those who love and want to make comics, just a very vocal subset.

Nick, you're assuming Newkju meant "fanboy" to cover all comics fans; this would be understandably upsetting if true, but I don't believe that that is how it was intended.

xombey
01-04-2008, 04:02 PM
youur teacher seems to have been biasd by the notion that comic books (the name for them doesn't help) are intended t be entertainment for children and nothing else. i'm positive that if you were to read posts on a film makers or actors forum, video game makers, fiction writers--any creative field you'd hear pretty similar stories..

The commerce end of creative fields demand that companies hold on to properties-- mvl sells themselves to prospective investors as owning the rights to properties that can be used for anything from movies to lunch boxes. publishers at harper collins, execs at hbo and disney are all trying to hold onto their jobs, mostly by keeping the status quo--ever notice how many cop and hospital dramas have been on tv since who knows when?

film and novel writers have been recruited to write comics, did this change anything much?

you're asking of commerce what it can't do. marvel exists to make a pofit anyone they recruit would be required tocontribute t that end. the envelope pushers are those who self-publish their vision w/o regard to financial gain--these people are inherently fans of the medium.

Marvel and DC are not the places to go to with the big ideas.

you equate hollywood's interest in the sci-fi guy who posts here w/some sort of value. hollywood gave you 3 spider-man movies, 3 x-men movies. they make movies out of tv shows from our youth because they have no real ideas--actuallyu they just need to make money-- :rolleyes:

MARK A ROBINSON
01-04-2008, 04:21 PM
Marvel and DC are not the places to go to with the big ideas.



I disagree. ( i agree with all the other stuff)

I can't really say Marvel per say ( i've never really pitched them) but I have pitched Vertigo and had sit downs with editors regarding a creator owned book on a couple occasions.

Yes...Nothing came of it (yet). But i was heard and considered.Nothing was wrong with the project.

Simply put- I do not have enough creative star power/clout or work under my belt to put those wheels in motion at the moment.Gotta earn my atarting line up job ...namean?

So i build my resume and rock everything i'm on until someone has to give me my shot.Then I rock that too.

I do- however believe going the indie route can be a faster way to success for your own ideas. But basically that's an uphill battle always.

You need to get paid to survive. So it's delicate balance sometimes.Dying for your art and all that. It's the double edged sword always.

M.

Nick Kerklaan
01-04-2008, 08:17 PM
Nick, you're assuming Newkju meant "fanboy" to cover all comics fans; this would be understandably upsetting if true, but I don't believe that that is how it was intended.

You're right in that fanboy is often used in a negative way to refer to a specific subset of fans, but with the phrase "But, unless they are comic fans (which adds to the problem)", I get the impression that Newjku is referring to more than just "fanboys", and that his/her problem is with comics fandom as a whole. Newjku, please correct me if that is not the case, but thats what I get from what you're saying. Maybe I'm just reading too much into it, I don't know.

As regards the detail-oriented fanboy type, I don't actually have a problem with them myself. Sometimes I like self-referential comic-nerd-trivia. I think even if Newjku specifically was referring to these types, it's way oversimplifying and blowing things out of proportion to think these people are somehow killing the industry. There's room for all types of fans and creators in comics.

heartofglitter
01-04-2008, 09:28 PM
Wow, this is the most depressing rant I've read in a looooong time.
If you ask me you're looking in the wrong places.

And what's wrong with comic fans? Without comics fans comics don't sell, thus no comics industry.
I think that this is a personal issue you're having more than an industry issue.

maverick
01-04-2008, 09:53 PM
take a risk? like un-doing spider-man and mary jane's marriage? wait.. what are we talking about again...?

Raff
01-05-2008, 12:54 AM
Just look at the guy who sometimes posts his scifi comic on here (and also drunk duck). I'm being stupid - can't seem to remember the name, but I've been reading his suff since 2006. He hasn't had much success with it in the comic community, but (apparently) some Hollywood people seem impressed. But Hollywood - that's another story in itself.

You're talking about me, I think?
Well, the lesson here is if you love what you do it will reward you in time.
I was saving the news for later but my book Devoid of Life (science-fiction/horror) has been picked up by a top 4 publisher. Yeah, that's right top four -but not Marvel and not DC -one of the next big two! Once my manager says so I was going to announce it here on DW first. But you got some of the scoop now. Manager was totally responsible for placing it there.
And...The Hollywood writers strike has slowed down all projects in Hollywood but the book has been brought into the fold at a major production house (hint-12 Monkeys, Batman Begins) and are looking for a screenwriter to create a package for the major studios. They said it would make a fabulous movie.
My manager has also said that of the people that saw my work in Hollywood all are very eager to see my next project with an automatic bypass of their gatekeepers because they were so impressed with Devoid.
This is exactly what I wanted since I was 16 - to create comics that get turned into movies! I'm 38 now.
Comics are not the place to make money but I'm lucky in that I've always been good with money and investing and can now after a 10 year absence from comics come back and pursue the dream without having to worry about cash to pay bills. (I still worry though.)
So I am hard at work on Manifestations (supernatural thriller, 30 of 128 pages done) with a manager who is eager to show it off when I'm finished.
I haven't made a dime yet but the future looks bright so with a bit of luck, hard work, stick-to-it-iveness could I be Frank Miller?
I'm trying and that's what life is all about.

Best,
-Raff Ienco

http://img523.imageshack.us/img523/6299/devoidbannerdv0.jpg (http://www.drunkduck.com/Devoid_of_Life/index.php?p=93777)

http://img368.imageshack.us/img368/9392/manbannerms3.jpg (http://www.drunkduck.com/Manifestations/)

T.J. May
01-05-2008, 01:20 AM
Congrats!

Nick Kerklaan
01-05-2008, 01:22 AM
Yeah, that's really cool Raff. Congratulations!

Ransak
01-05-2008, 03:38 AM
Good for you Raff! Congrats and all that good shit!

:banana: