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Old 01-31-2006, 07:38 PM   #46
chris stevens
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from 'seven seas', the lead-off story in 'introductions, endings, and in-between', the book this thread is all about...



that's arthur adams and nick bradshaw.
yay!
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Old 01-31-2006, 09:40 PM   #47
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AH! See that?!? Nick Bradshaw was definitely the right choice for finishes on this thing. I hope Arthur is happy, it looks great!

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Old 02-01-2006, 09:42 PM   #48
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just hung up the phone following an incredibly frustrating conversation with the artist of my boyhood-dreams...nothing worse then hearing your hero suffer and doubting their pain...
i remember telling a dear friend of mine, in an entirely different context, we could all be other people, grief-dependant yet free in the assumptions of ourselves...my assumation is in dire need of cashing-in, so, befitting such, empathy rams it right up my ass...and i've got all the time in the world to whimper...
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Old 02-02-2006, 03:44 PM   #49
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well, we're making shrimp scampi for lunch/dinner...i'm more of a daily meal and not breakfast/lunch/dinner kind of eater...i'll knosh in-between on a piece of fruit or a hunk of cheese and bread, but i only really eat a meal once a day. which is a contributing factor to my slug-like metabolism...

anyway, before the scampi...

that last post sounds too damn depressing. i apologize, mysterious readers.

and i'm glad you liked it, wya.
for the two people who might not know, ryan ottley, or wya, illustrates 'invincible' for image comics. he's building a heck of a run there and i'm as curious as anyone to see what he does next...

for a lot of reasons, it's not easy finding someone to ink art adams.
the fact that (thankfully!!!) he's inked himself pretty much for the last ten years has only raised the bar. in practical terms, it's a lot of work for an inker. art's tremendously detailed style doesn't work if you're not going to go all-in. in personal terms the fact is arthur intimidates, or rather, has thrilled, a whole generation...you'll be inspired and do the best work of your life or you'll wilt from the challenge and choke on that 'x-men' annual...

so as i thought of guys who could finish over arthur, i thought of guys who were great artists in their own right, but also guys who would LOVE what they were doing, finishing over art adams on an original story. they had to be both. me and art talked about lots of inkers, greats from palmer to townsend, but that wouldn't work...as much pride as those guys take in their work it would be just another job to them...we needed something more, a gleam in the eye that shone through the pages and winked at the reader and said, 'man, ain't we having fun!'

it had to look great, and it had to feel right.

there were only ever three people asked if they were interested. we got it right that quick, lucky for me. there was nick bradshaw, kevin knowlan, and my old uncle wya.
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Old 02-04-2006, 03:28 PM   #50
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do you ever realize you're stuck-in-a-rut and you need change so you force change down your own throat, you follow through on some crazy notion and see where it takes you...

i'm not sure where it'll wind up taking me but yesterday i made the boldest move i've made in this game, the boldest move i've made as a person,and really, the scariest thing, for me, i could ever do.

see, there's always a 'what are you going to do next?'
any decent creator is always thinking about other things, seeing one thing lead to another...myself, i'll spin 'jane' and 'seven seas' into series; concentrate on the development of this debut book as an on-going vehicle for establishing new worlds, new titles; i'll make a memoir-esque 300 pg graphic novel about making the first book and the years surrounding it, covering 5 years of my life; an anthology, 'corners', where todays best cartoonists tell stories about hiding things, or hiding from something;
and one last pressing project, a collection of the best writers in comics from all over the world, all creating freely and in accordance of one another.

so i took the first, small steps towards seeing one of these into-action.
and it felt good, because it was the most intimidating correspondence i've had, at least the initial apprehension and anxiety in-between e-mails, that modern fear of clicking into new messages...but the reality of it has been so kind and helpful on my 'guide's part and i'm humbled just by that...if the facts, a few months from now, wind up on my side, i'll pinch myself, and dream again...

this is a long post, as posts go. but i wanted to mention 'the name of the game', an ogn by will eisner. i read it a month ago and i dreamed about those characters for a week afterwards. at first i was kind of turned off by the cliches will was creating with the core characters, but as it got going, as life went on in his narrative, i saw they weren't cliches, just people, and that's how people turn out lots of time in life. eisner did an amazing job, effortless really, at showing the rising tides and falling fortunes of three generations of families. characters you initially dismiss you come to feel for. characters you empathize with are shown to be thoughtless themselves...by painting such a black and white portrait eisner somehow manages to reveal all the greys along the way. that he was in his eighties when he did it is , quite frankly, unremarkable given the great master's career; he was just that good.
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Old 02-04-2006, 03:59 PM   #51
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Hey Chris, Been readin' this thread since you started it. I grew up on Eisners Spirit books when they were printed by Warren Publ. He along with Miller were my two biggest reasons I got into this game. In fact Miller got me readin' Lone Wolf and Cub. I love the cinematic feel of all three of these artist(Well 4 if you count Koike and Kojima.) If you have'nt checked out the Miller/Eisner book its well worth a read. The man was a genius. Got it for my birthday and I have to say it's one of the best gifts I've ever gotten. Keep pluggin away...I want to see this thing done. Best of luck. JimG
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Panel continuity and storytelling should be the primary objective of all GOOD comic book art.
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Old 02-06-2006, 10:31 PM   #52
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hi, jim.
thanks for your support. it's appreciated.

i've read/own the eisner/miller book...i agree, it's essential reading for the comics enthusiast of any level or inclination. i've been lucky enough to spend some time, however brief, with both of those giants;they each left me a changed man...

'warren' i've only read about,but i'm learning as i go...

yeah, i got into 'lone wolf' through miller too, way back in the late 80's/late grade-school years...it's amazing because once you've read it all( lone wolf, moebius, eisner, kirby, colan, toth) once you read all those guys, and i'm missing lots more, once you read all those great artists you see what frank miller has done. how deep he runs, how far he's gone. it's inspiring.

various thoughts...

...for a writer/producer, and one who pays out-of-pocket, waiting for pages is as pure a hell as a long divorce;there was love involved but now you just want to see it through and move on...

...'shaolin cowboy' is a great comic book. it looks great. it SMELLS great. it's a blast to read. books like this, and ladronn's 'hip flask', they make you realize how much the monthly book is just a mind-set...a mind-set i prescribe to, mind you; i like seeing good books out there every month...but a book like this(sc#2) has as much impact as 5 issues of 'new avengers'...
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:00 PM   #53
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I've seen Shoalin Cowboy at my retailer. I'll have to check it out. Warren was a publisher back in thelate 70's maybe early 80's. They published books like The Spirit, Creepy, Vampirella ( I think Frazetta was doing early work on that.), Eerie. And my personal favorite, Famous Monsters of Filmland. I dropped out of the business for a while so I've missed alot of things that have gone on in the industry. Books I read prior to dropping out. Sin City, Preacher, Hitman, X from Dark Horse. I've kind of stepped away from the superhero books, although I was readin' Bendis/Maleev's Daredevil. I've sensed alot of negativity surrounding the industry and I'm wondering has it been this way for awhile or what. I'm excited to be back in it and am looking fprward to publishing my own book hopefully by summer of this year. I've seen your posts on this site and I appreciate your passion for your project and this industry. Best of luck!
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Old 02-07-2006, 10:00 PM   #54
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storyboards for a particularly fun page from 'jungle jane'...wait'll you see the finished pages!
an homage to walt disney, hopefully that shines through.

thanks, jim.
i guess it's always 90% shit 10% good. comics can't change that because that can't be changed. but it is important to strive for inclusion in that 10%...it's important too, to try to push it as far as you can, however you can.
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Old 02-08-2006, 04:09 PM   #55
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more from 'seven seas', illustrated by art adams and nick bradshaw.
(edit: as always with image shack, i suggest clicking on full-page mode)


http://fareldal.livejournal.com/

farel dalrymple has updated his journal. there's the usual batch of brilliant moments there; new characters, grand illustration, and the most illustrative sense of yearning-through-fine-lines i've yet to see. every piece has equal parts fantasy/reality, every image carries narrative momentum, every line is personal...it's been two months since this was updated and these sketchbook pages always knock me out. and at the top, that great color shot is a close-up from farel's story 'castles' in my book.

i realized today how much i miss 'the moose in the closet', jason rodriguez's daily blog. yesterday,story. the day before, no story. today, no story.
the daily dose that jason brought to everyone is gone, discontinued for now.
there's one less interesting region to wander into. one less pleasant diversion, one less emotional-port of recall, one less voice to sympathize with, or laugh at, or scorn.

more later...
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Old 02-14-2006, 10:35 PM   #56
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something i posted earlier today at jason rodriguez's 'moose'...
jason set the table. he did that for about 3 months before i even noticed, silly me...now he only posts on tuesdays/thursdays and i look forward to it.

....



i had a buddy , right out of high-school, he was 6'6, olympian build, blonde hair, blue-eyes, local sports star and eldest son of one of the 'big' families in the area; his dad was an ex-jock who owned bars and restaurants and liqour stores and he had five brothers and they all owned bars and restaurants and so-on. no bullshit, on christmas the star on my buddies tree was a photo of his pops getting dunked on by wilt chamberlain. this buddy of mine, he got more pussy from a greater variety of sources than anyone i've ever known. rich, poor, old, young, white, black, conservative chicks, punk girls, you name it, he ****ed it. when we started going to strip clubs, something, honestly, i can't stand doing, he started bringing strippers home. we'd pull up to this cavernous ****ing house on the main street of our little town ventnor, atlantic city's suburb, and we'd pile into his basement, drunk and stoned, with 2 or 3 girls named onyx and raven, poor girls from deep in atlantic city, always half-something, half-spanish half black, half-columbian half-white, and we'd do bong hits and eat mushrooms and the girls would wind up in your lap(and yes, strippers have smoothe skin, like the belly of sea-shells)
and i'm telling you, writing this now, i can smell those ****ing nights. but eventually the morning would come, and a long drive deep into the city, dropping onyx(lisa) off at the lighthouse towers, and heading home, alone.
chris stevens | 02.14.06 - 2:56 pm | #

...



i post that kind of thing because it could be great comics. it's all written to end in panels, which is to say i see it as it moves through feelings but adhering to the beat, exposition/visual, emotional beat/visual, exposition/beat...it's all just frank miller shit i'm trying to figure out as i go...

christ, i should erase that...

nah, it's true. no shame. i'm sure there've been instances frank caught himself feeling phoney...it's natural.

i've wondered what a real journal , keeping one , would be like;i've chided myself for not doing so...this is a start...

Last edited by chris stevens; 02-15-2006 at 03:03 PM. Reason: spelling mistake
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Old 02-14-2006, 11:39 PM   #57
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Chris - thanks for the shout out. I should tell you, though, that I needed to hide the four most recent entries, including the one that inspired this story of yours. Yes, it has to do with the new book and believe me when I say sacrificing the stories for a couple of days can turn out to be the best thing to happen to this book - I needed to make sure the warmer stories were front and center for the people who maybe coming by over the next week.

We'll talk, you'll see.
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Old 02-15-2006, 02:56 PM   #58
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jason's secret project is such a good idea that i'm forced, against my nature, to actually keep it a secret.

and hey, look, james jean won olympic gold...


http://www.processrecess.com/

that's pretty cool.
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Old 02-20-2006, 02:01 PM   #59
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some more storyboards from 'jungle jane'. the red pen is max's notes to me.














working this way is great, it gives you the chance for the best possible finished product, and the smoothest final stages. it's more work for the artist, for everyone, but i believe it's the only way to really create a whole new world, one that spins in its own orbit, where the reader can firmly plant their feet and breathe in...

one book that just had that very effect on me was paul pope's brilliant 'batman year 100' #1...this book had me breathing hard, actually worried about this future batman, a freedom fighter in a shitty world where the government knows everything about everyone and uses teams of marauding super-cops and packs of cybernetic pit-bulls to keep the peace.
pope is just a flat-out master. he puts batman in peril with a variety of stunning shots, dizzying angles, and superb body language...this guy's just a guy, he's being hunted, and there's no guarantee he's going to make it...it's something you don't get out of a batman book, it goes back to when bruce wayne first started fighting crime in gotham and he was getting his ass kicked too often...immediately this batman is the underdog and you're cheering for him. and pope, with jose villarubia, creates an ugly dystopian gotham of 2039. the government presence, the creepy and outlandish group of characters introduced here, is personalized enough that it avoids the rut of dull satire or evil cabal. i won't spoil any moments for anyone, trust me it's a great book.

now, the 'new avengers' #16 on the other hand...wow, talk about filler. those first 8 pages, all splash pages, there's no impact to any of it. and they're not even that great to look at. then there's more snappy banter from tony stark, more snappy banter from shield, a very goofy alpha flight, a phone call from the president which leads over two pages, which is the only decent part, this spread leading into the 'big moment' cliffhanger splash...which felt like it should have been about page 11 of the book.
i like this title, i've read every issue, and i don't mind bendis' stuff when he delivers...this was just too much. and could they come up with a more generic cover for this book? bleh.
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Old 02-23-2006, 02:46 PM   #60
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sometimes it seems like i invest so much of myself on making comics that i forget to enjoy them, or can't. this is a function of the creative process, sure, but it's a miserly spirit and one i don't want possessing me.
it's been a great joy practically my entire life, coming home once a week or every two weeks with a fat stack of comics...old favorites, new titles, dear friends, old enemies.the occassional oddball, thrown in for good measure. creaky late-seventies/early 80's back-issues that haunted my memory until i held them in my hands, the actual proof and body of their existence never quite enough to dispell the memories which, of course, were always better.

i still enjoy doing that, but damn comics are expensive. when i was a little kid, if you could wrangle a $20 bill, hell, you could get 25-30 comics...you could buy a big goofy variety and dive into the deep-end, be it dc or marvel or the independents(those bastards threw off the curve, with their
$1.50-and-up prices but they made some great books) and it was easy to explore the shelves and thumb through the spinner-racks.
you buy 30 comics now and you're looking at $80/$100.
i'm not a very money-conscious person. in fact, i'm horrible with money.
which is why i'll be sitting at home typing this weekend instead of getting it on in nyc. but that's a big difference over the years. and it makes it harder to sample books, to get new readers. well, it makes it more challenging for the creator to sell and for the reader, who doesn't want to get burned too often at $3 a pop.

and it's not like the prices are ever going back, nor should they. better production, better pay for creators, inflation. the first two are necessary and the third unavoidable.

the solution?
rich parents, or at least very giving ones, if you're a kid.
no other vices, a second job, or a rich spouse if you're not.
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