SPECIAL BONUS! Order the new Dungeon Quest Book 3 from Fantagraphics and receive, absolutely free, the full-color, 20-page FBI•MINI "SOH!" featuring page after page of Joe Daly's Dungeon Quest character sketches, rough pencils, and other goodies, plus a hilarious, fully-finished, never-before-seen two-page story in the Dungeon Quest vein by Daly. Click here for more FBI•MINIs!
Wouldn't you like to see a full-length steampunk animated feature designed by Jacques Tardi? Yeah, so would we. Here's a teaser trailer for just such a thing currently in development, from the studio that brought you PERSEPOLIS, called LE MONDE TRUQUÉ (co-written by Tardi's COCKROACH KILLER writer Benjamin Legrand, for good measure). In English, yet. Enjoy!
Walt Kelly was old school: When he drew his comics, he first sketched them out in light blue pencil, and then proceeded to delineate them in his legendarily lush ink line. One huge advantage of this system was that he didn't have to erase any pencil lines (all that erasin' time adds up). Here is a sample.
Another advantage is that it made them really cool looking! Carolyn Kelly, the editor of the POGO series, thinks so too, and since she had a selection of original POGO art from the strip's first years, she scanned several images that featured those blue lines and used them as graphic elements in the first volume.
We would like to continue this design element, but as it happens, Carolyn's stash of POGO originals for the next several years' worth of strips is very limited. So we are hereby putting out a call to all POGO collectors: If you have any originals (dailies or Sundays, but Sundays especially since they often contain such lush imagery), particularly for 1952 through 1955 since that covers our next two volumes (but pretty much any years would be great), do please contact us! In exchange for a scan of your precious collectible, we will be happy to send you copies of the book it appears in.
Beginning Sunday April 1st, the Prince Valiant strip boasts its third ongoing artist (after John Cullen Murphy, 1971-2004, and the just-retired Gary Gianni): Thomas Yeates — perhaps best known to long-time comics fans for his stint on Saga of the Swamp Thing and other DC Comics, but a busy, sought-after illustrator in both comic books and comic strips (including Zorro and Conan). He'd previously followed in Hal Foster's footsteps, drawing Tarzan comics on and off during the last two decades for Dark Horse Comics (including in the issues of Dark Horse Presents that are currently on the stands).
Mark Schultz continues to write the Valiant strip, as he has since 2004.
Last November, we introduced one of our most successful and acclaimed promotions ever: The FBI•MINI project, a series of mini-books exclusively available as premiums via Fantagraphics mail-order. Customers could secure these coveted collectibles either by ordering (or pre-ordering) specific books that went along with the FBI•MINIs, or just placing a general order (for $50 or more). We got in so many orders for FBI•MINIs (close to a thousand!) that we had trouble keeping up with demand!
For the month of April we're "doubling down" with this promotion: If you place an order that qualifies you for one of the FBI•MINI's (by ordering one of the qualifying books, or ANYTHING of $50 or more), add a second FBI•MINI to your order. And if your order is $100 or more, you can order FOUR FBI•MINIs... and so on! If ordering by phone or mail, order the FBI•MINIs as you would any other item; if ordering online, list them in the "comments" section.
This special deal will be in effect throughout the rest of April 2012. Place your order today!
It is with a heavy heart that we must report that Dale Yarger, a beloved and influential figure on the Seattle alternative-press and design scene with whom we had the pleasure of working for a number of years in the 1990s (he was Fantagraphics' senior designer for the first half of the decade, as well as on a later occasion), has passed away after a long, courageous battle with cancer.
Dale was a man of uncommon skill, grace, and sweetness and his premature departure leaves a hole in the world and in our hearts. Our sympathy goes out to all the people who knew and loved Dale, of which which there are -- as you can tell from the steady stream of updates to this Facebook tribute page to Dale -- many.
This coming Thursday, March 8th, they get to go to the opening of a Joost Swarte art show, with Swarte himself in attendance signing copies of his new book Total Swarte (i.e. the French edition of what we just released as Is That All There Is?).
Then, they will all head off to various cafés, with baguettes under their arms and berets on their heads, to drink wine, eat cheese, smoke, and argue until the wee hours of the morning. For they are French, and that is what the French do.
The Joost Swarte art show runs through May 5, 2012 at Galerie Martel [ 17 Rue Martel, Paris ].
It is my enormous pleasure to announce the return of Linda Medley to active Castle Waiting duty, beginning in April, after a three-year hiatus.
Castle Waiting Volume Two was originally supposed to run for another few issues, comprising a series of additional and concluding scenes, but Linda was unable to complete that material at the time. Since the main story was finished, since it looked as if Castle Waiting was definitely over, and since there was huge demand for a follow-up to the original Castle Waiting graphic novel, we released the chapters that had been completed as the Castle Waiting Volume Two book.
To my surprise and delight, Linda recently wrote me to say that she wanted to go back in and finish the book the way she'd intended it. As I write this she is putting the finishing touches on that long-delayed 16th issue, with two more to come after that, to REALLY wrap up the story. And her work is as great as ever. Here is a sample:
(click images to enlarge)
You may notice that the lettering is quite different, and, we feel, hugely improved. While we thought the typeset lettering in most of Volume Two was fine, we have, in the intervening years, become so adept at creating fonts from cartoonists' lettering that we decided to try that for Linda, and the results are quite stunning. (Believe it or not, this is Linda's hand lettering that we've used, even though it's so neat it looks like typography.)
You may wonder, where does that leave the epilogue-less Volume 2 book collection? Our plan is to let it lapse for the next year (in fact, our distributors just ran out of copies, so it is out of print), and then reprint the book with the new chapters added, and the entire thing re-lettered with the lovely new font.
Since we realize this may be a bit frustrating to loyal Castle Waiting readers/buyers, we are doing a few things that should help. For one thing, we will be offering a subscription to the three $3.95 comics (completing the story) for a supercheap $8.00. (Not bad for 70 pages of great new Medley comics.) And we are trying to figure out a way to accommodate those readers who bought the original Volume 2 book and would prefer the new one but aren't totally thrilled about being asked to fork over money for a whole new book. We don't want to be like Peter Jackson (well, New Line) who makes fans buy new Lord of the Rings DVD's every two or three years!
So stay tuned... and in the meantime, enjoy the imminent return (next month) of one of the greatest and most beautifully drawn fantasy comic books of all time... Castle Waiting!
Swarte collectors will want to buy their copy of Is That All There Is? directly from us, as every mail-order copy ordered from Fantagraphics will be accompanied by "Actually, That Wasn't All There Was," the FBI•MINI giveaway featuring a half-dozen hilarious Jurassic-era Swarte comics stories that have not been in print for over 40 years, and have never been seen in English! (Even I was totally unfamiliar with them.) I'd hate to pick favorites, but this may be the most collectible FBI•MINI of them all, showcasing Swarte's earliest, pre-Hergé-pastiche, more underground-y style. A revelation!
And if you've already pre-ordered your copy of Is That All There Is? from another source, remember that any FBI•MINI can also be obtained by simply placing an order for $50 or more with Fantagraphics (for any of our books) and picking it as your freebie.