Friday, January 13, 2012

Early Graphic Story Attempt, page 2

A few posts ago I put up the first page of my early (1979) attempt at a fantasy comic book/graphic story. It was, as you might remember, illustrated from a script by a Boston-area fantasy writer, Leo Giroux. I managed to get 2 1/2 pages done from this before I had to give up due to lack of skill and experience as well as an overly wordy script. I know I have this relic text somewhere but it is buried under tons of papers and other archival material. The title was "The Jewels of Entythe" (sounds like "Enticing") that being the name of the babe in the green robe showing some tit to taunt master thief Pram Zata, the man in black behind the yellow force-field prison. I was aiming this at "Heavy Metal" magazine and you had to have naked women in your story. I wonder if I could do any better with this now.

You handful of loyal readers may notice that I have gotten a bit more personal and talky in this Blog. I don't get to talk to a lot of people about much of anything these days. Most of the people I used to blab with at work are gone to another Trader Joe's or are somewhere else, and I don't yammer on my cellphone the way everyone else does. (What the hell are they talking about anyway?) So if you hear a bit more from me than just about art, you can choose to go somewhere else for a more entertaining read. The good thing is, I'll never know. Or, you can delight me and comment. Did you know that "Art By-Products" will celebrate its fourth blogiversary this March? That's four years of some sort of art on this page, almost every day of the year, and very few repeats.

Page 2 of "The Jewels of Entythe" is ink and watercolor on Strathmore illustration board, 11" x 15", summer 1979. Click on the image to see a larger view.


MKS said...

I think your sequential art, even this early example, looks very professional, so I wonder why, especially with your love of pin-ups and "special effects," you never got more deeply into the comic book scene? It seems like you went to lots of prose SF conventions, but did you go to the comic book conventions? You knew all these novelists, but did you ever know any other comic artists? Did you hang out with the fanboys like the characters from "The Big Bang Theory"?

If not, why not? Why would someone as visually oriented as you become so deep in the fandom of the written word, and not the parallel fandom of stories told in art?

Also I wonder that I haven't seen your take on the anime/manga scene, which was a big influence on my art loving, comic book reading friends in the '90s and early 2000s...

Pyracantha said...

MKS: It's great to hear from you!

You are touching on something which has been a constant conflict in my life. I have loved the sequential medium all my life and have always wanted to do graphic stories. Yet as you say I frequented prose and costuming conventions, not comic book conventions.

One reason was that I could make money selling my art at the mainstream conventions. I am not really that good at sequential art and don't have the facility and skill to sit at "artist's alley" doing work instantly on site.

Another reason was that the prose crowd looked down on comics as superficial and juvenile, and I followed their snobbery. This is no longer the case, especially since in the rest of the world comics are regarded as a true art form.

I have wanted to go to a comic convention for years but there are none where I am (Washington DC area). There is one in Baltimore but I have not visited it. I went to SPX in Bethesda in September to explore whether I could market some of my art there but I didn't like anything I saw there.

I have 2 graphic novels becalmed in the water, I really want to finish them. The art on them is much better than what you saw here in this posting. One is from a story by Katherine Kurtz ("Deryni" stories) and the other is original to me. If I thought there was any interest in them, I would finish them.

As for anime, when I first saw it, I hated it, especially the huge eyes. But lately I've been shown Asian comics which are far better drawn and I am a bit more tolerant now.

I would say more but don't want to run on. Thanks for commenting and I hope you continue to read my Art Blog here and comment!

MKS said...

I should say that this is your faithful reader Mary, just posting under a different google account that I happened to be logged into.

I know what you mean about "snobbery," but I do think it's kind of ironic that fans of a genre which is itself derided as superficial and juvenile by academic types would have the same attitude toward other genres...

It's too bad you weren't on the West Coast. I went to college in the Seattle area (and later than you did) and I think the culture there would have been friendlier to your interests... Plus there are more comic book conventions.