The State of Comic Book Retail - David Harper's latest comics industry survey shows bricks and mortar comic stores to be in a surprising period of opportunity and change. But are there now too many comics?
Groening and Barry Take New York (Sarah Larson, The New Yorker)
"In the early eighties, discovering non-mainstream culture (independent cinema, post-punk rock, comic strips that weren’t 'Beetle Bailey') was much like being a detective, and local alternative newsweeklies were valuable providers of clues. They reviewed art and music that was hard to find; most important, they printed Groening’s 'Life in Hell' and Barry’s 'Ernie Pook’s Comeek.' Both were electrifyingly good. You wondered who these people were, where they came from, why they did what they did. I remember the jolt I felt when looking at the copyright page of Groening’s book 'Love Is Hell' and seeing an odd message, like a note left in a knothole: LYNDA BARRY IS FUNK QUEEN OF THE GALAXY. Groening and Barry were friends!"
If you heard the recent NPR's Codeswitch segment on The Green Turtle, the first Asian superhero created in the United States, you heard descriptions of the 1940s comic. But there's more (so much more!) online. Start with the entire run of The Green Turtle on the amazing Digital Comic Museum, which hosts public domain Golden Age comics (late 1930s until the late 1940s or early 1950s). If you want to know more about Chu F. Hing, the artist behind the original Green Turtle, here's an extensively researched biography on the astounding Chinese American Eyes blog, which covers "famous, forgotten, well-known, and obscure visual artists of Chinese descent in the United States." [more inside]
Hamish Steele! Be moved by his brief-yet-poignant award-winning animated film The Right Time. Be charmed by his commissioned portraits of couples and their pets. Be inspired by his loose and fresh superheroes (Batman, Phoenix, Hawkeye)! And it wouldn't be Tumblr without an appearance by Sherlock Holmes (not that one).
MaCab Films is producing a documentary on artist Jeffrey Catherine Jones. Trailers for the film here and here. Jones is known for her comic book work, fantasy and science-fiction cover paintings, and romantic paintings, usually of women. Some links may be NSFW if your work has problems with impressionistic and artistic paintings of unclothed women. [more inside]
The 25 best comics covers of 2008 - from Robot 6, the new home of the old blog@Newsarama team. [more inside]
EC Comics great Jack Kamen (probably best known today as the father of inventor Dean Kamen) has died at 88. [more inside]
Do Your Strip: A hopeful book and exhibition where 70 artists and illustrators invent a character, provide instructions on how to draw it, then create the first comic adventure. Exhibit-goers would then create additional stories with their favorite characters. All the characters, instructions, and first strips can be seen here [pdf]. [more inside]
"And by magic, I mean me drinking a lot of coffee and not bathing for days while sitting in my PJ's and drawing comics until the wee hours of the morning." Gasp at comics creator Mike Allred's lovely home! Admire artist Stuart Immonen's tastfully furnished work area! And marvel at writer Mark Waid's piles and piles of comic crap! Click the [more inside] for more studio tours guided by your favorite funnybook creators! And Mark Millar, too! [more inside]
Get lost in the fabulous labyrinth of Coconino World, a mammoth French site with thousands of images from illustrators, graphic artists, and cartoonists ranging from the classics to the contemporary. Some personal favorites: the generous selection of graphics from Simplicissimus, the celebrated German satire magazine published weekly from 1896-1944. James Swinerton's Canyon Kiddies. George Herriman's Krazy Kat. -more-
Double Fine Action Comics. My favourite adventures, from their beginning episodes: Art Director Scott Campbell's 2HB & friends, and Nathan Stapley's My Comic About Me. Prepare thine LOLerskates for some fun terrain! p.s. your favourite webcomic sucks.
The Center for Cartoon Studies, nestled in the historic village of White River Junction, Vermont, will learn you up good on how to be a comic artist/graphic novelist. They operate under the charter of the National Association of Comics Art Educators; Charles Schulz's widow Jean hooked them up with funding for a library in town. When you apply for admission, don't forget to include that story about you, the snowman, and the robot. A photo tour of the Center and its surroundings can be seen here.
Discover meesimo! Fun comics, illustrations, sketches, storyboards and more. Awesome artist originally from the St. Louis, Missouri area and now living and working in Miami, Florida. In St. Louis, his works adorn the walls of Bailey's Chocolate Bar. In Florida, go to the Dorsch Gallery.
Lines on Paper has a great nine-page gallery of business cards embellished by comic artist notables. Here's my fave by Dennis Worden. For more yummy comic browsing, consult the Comiclopedia (from Lambiek, which also has an illustrated history of Dutch comics).
Micropayments to the artist as a young boy So, I've been thinking about this end of copyright thing as has Scott McCloud it seems. Coupled with Lance Glassdog's rant on the subject and something has been tickling my brainstem about it. Since when does being an artist equal being paid?