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Category >> Blake Bell

Daily OCD: 6/23/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Wilfred SantiagoTim KreiderThe Comics JournalSteve DitkoShimura TakakoreviewsLinda MedleyKim DeitchJim WoodringGene DeitchDave McKeanDaily OCDBlake BellBill EverettaudioAnders Nilsen21 23 Jun 2011 7:20 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Castle Waiting

List: Castle Waiting Vols. 1 & 2 take two spots on Nancy Pearl's "10 Terrific Summer Reads" list at NPR.org: "The black-and-white drawings are precisely crafted, with small, endearing touches that render each character entirely unique. The dialogue is clever and filled with subtle grace notes of drollness and humor. The set will be especially appealing to readers of all ages who enjoy seeing and reading traditional fairy tale tropes teased and played with, all with a sense of good-humored fun."

Congress of the Animals

Review: "...Congress of the Animals finds twisted fabulist Woodring at the top of his darkly delightful game: Open the book at random and the odds are very good that your gaze will alight upon something that stings, bites, drips, oozes or squelches. Tentacled plant-beasts threaten the unwary, factories powered by crushed blackbirds produce who-knows-what, slimy amphibians enact bizarre rituals and a tribe of naked, faceless men whom the jacket copy refers to as "blind gut-worshippers" — easily the most potent nightmare fuel Woodring has ever produced — drug passersby for mysterious purposes of their own. You certainly won't want to live inside the covers of Congress of the Animals, but it's a fascinating and thrilling feat of imagination, and one hell of a place to visit." – Glen Weldon, NPR.org

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "This book does something I love. It takes me inside a world I’ve never known.... Shimura’s writing does a good job of exposing the readers to the realities of being transgender. Wandering Son ignited my imagination and got me trying to relate to and understand these characters as deeply as possible.... Shimura has crafted an excellent opening volume.... The quiet pace and subject matter make this series a perfect read for the alternative comics crowd. Fans of shoujo and josei manga will enjoy it too. I’d love for everyone to at least give the first volume of Wandering Son a try. It’s a rare gem of emotional honesty and complexity that rewards those willing to take the risk and move outside their typical reading habits." – Ed Sizemore, Comics Worth Reading

Monologues for Calculating the Density of Black Holes

Review: "Monologues for Calculating the Density of Black Holes by Anders Nilsen... touched a special spot that I strive towards in my reading; it created atmosphere. There’s a weight to the unhinged timeline and nonsensical dialogue. It feels calculated, even as it touches on topics such as 'Godzilla vs. Richard Simmons.' The drawings are simple, yet they effortlessly convey time and feel appropriate for the content. It was a quick read, but one that I’ll be revisiting. Check it out." – Au Yeah!

21: The Story of Roberto Clemente

Interview: Newsarama's Michael Lorah talks to Wilfred Santiago about the creation of 21: The Story of Roberto Clemente: "A baseball sequence is all about interpretation; there are cold, unchangeable facts. If the batter hits a home run to left field in the second inning, etc., then those are unchangeable facts about that scene. So it’s about the reading of the particulars. I mean, if you are saying sad things while laughing maniacally, it’s different than if you are saying them while sobbing and in tears. Therefore, it’s all about what role that particular game sequence plays in the story as a whole. It’s not a book about baseball, even though there’s baseball in it."

Celluloid [Pre-Order]

Interview (Audio): Inkstuds host Robin McConnell rang up Dave McKean (on Skype presumably) for a conversation about his latest book: "Celluloid, fresh out from Fantagraphics, is a remarkable work exploring pornography through a very particular lens. Needless to say, it is fantastic."

Strange Suspense + Unexplored Worlds: The Steve Ditko Archives Vols. 1-2

Interview (Audio): Blake Bell goes on the Collected Comics Library podcast to talk with host Chris Marshall about the ongoing Steve Ditko Archives and the upcoming Bill Everett Archives

The Comics Journal #301

Opinion: At Robot 6, Sean T. Collins comments on the excerpt from Tim Kreider's Cerebus essay from The Comics Journal #301 which appears at TCJ.com

The Search for Smilin' Ed!

Lore: Kim Deitch continues his new column over at TCJ.com, "Mad About Music: My Life in Records," featuring (among other things) a few of his dad Gene's jazz illustrations (as seen in our book Cat on a Hot Thin Groove)

Daily OCD: 6/12/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Zak SallyreviewsPeanutsMickey MouseLewis TrondheimKim ThompsonKevin HuizengaJoe SaccoJim WoodringJasonFrank SantoroFloyd GottfredsonFantagraphics BookstoreDisneyDame DarcyDaily OCDCharles M SchulzBlake BellBill EverettAlex Toth 13 Jun 2011 3:49 AM

Ran out of time on Friday's Online Commentary & Diversions, so it's combined with links from the weekend:

Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1: Race to Death Valley

Review: "Now Fantagraphics has risen to the fore with [Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1:] Race to Death Valley... It’s a pretty spiffy package, sharply designed and full of smart, well-written essays that provide a rich portrait of the artist and his times, as well as some great comics.... As impressive as Gottfredson's work is, it's in the ancillary materials or 'special features' that makes this book really shine. Editors Gary Groth and David Gerstein have gone the extra mile here... With its shameless abundance of riches, Mickey Mouse Vol. 1 sets a new standard in reprint publication." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

Plug: "Only a small handful of Gottfredson's collected works have been published and most are out of print. He pioneered a trendsetting style of adventure comics, though in his lifetime remained largely unrecognized.... Fantagraphics has kindly republished a bit of the Gottfredson Mickey run in their new book [Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1:] Race to Death Valley, beautifully restored [and] repackaged..." – Green Apple Books

The Complete Peanuts 1979-1980 (Vol. 15)

Review: "The latest volume of The Complete Peanuts: 1979-1980 continues with Charles Schulz’s herculean output of his beloved comic strip. Schulz supplies the customary laughs in stand-alone gag strips and some short 'continuing' storylines.... As I have said in previous reviews, Fantagraphics does such a marvelous job with these hardcover Peanuts volumes. From the cover by designer Seth, to the crisp black-and-white reprinting (3 dailies per page, 1 Sunday per page), to the handy index to help you find your favorite strip, Fantagraphics takes creating a permanent archive of this beloved humor strip very seriously. Children of all ages should all get their hands on this American treasure." – Rich Clabaugh, The Christian Science Monitor

Commentary: Mike Sterling makes a few observations about The Complete Peanuts 1979-1980: "SPOILER ALERT: Peppermint Patty gathers evidence and uses skeptical, critical thinking to resolve her particular issue here."

Approximate Continuum Comics

Review: "Some of the very first autobiographical works on the French bande dessinée scene, these little gems were a genuine game-changer for cartoonists and storytellers... Superbly skilled at switching imperceptibly from broad self-parody to cripplingly painful personal revelation, wild surrealism to powerful reportage and from clever humorous observation to howling existentialist inquisition, Trondheim’s cartoon interior catalogue is always a supremely rewarding and enjoyable experience and, as these ancient texts [Approximate Continuum Comics] prove, always has been." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

Fire & Water: Bill Everett, the Sub-Mariner and the Birth of Marvel Comics

Review: "[Blake] Bell is our guide into this rich history of Bill Everett... Bell includes several pieces of artwork and comics that has rarely been seen. A true testament to a man who lived comics throughout his entire life and loved it with a passion...[I]t’s important not only to remember the characters, but the men behind them. Bell’s book here on the life and times of Bill Everett [Fire & Water], and his other biographical material on Steve Ditko, is a testament to that." – Chris Marshall, Collected Comics Library

Congress of the Animals

Plug (Audio): NPR's Glen Weldon gives a shout-out to Jim Woodring's Congress of the Animals on the new episode of the Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast at the NPR Monkey See blog

Setting the Standard: Comics b Alex Toth 1952-1954

Plug: At Robot 6, Michael May's tour of the current Previews catalog takes note of "Setting the Standard: Comics by Alex Toth 1952-1954 – Everyone knows that you’re supposed to revere Alex Toth, because chances are your favorite comics artist already does. Here’s where you find out why."

Safe Area Gorazde: The Special Edition

Interview: Hillary Chute talks to Joe Sacco for The Believer; I'll use their pullquote: "When you draw, you can always capture that moment. You can always have that exact, precise moment when someone’s got the club raised, when someone’s going down. I realize now there’s a lot of power in that."

Interview: The A.V. Club's Sam Adams talks to Joe Sacco: "I think if I hadn’t studied journalism I might have taken a different approach, and I’m not saying my approach is the only way you can tell a story journalistically. But because I actually studied it, detail is important and accuracy is really important, so it’s not just about having an accurate quote. The problem with doing things the way I try to do them is that it’s not just an accurate quote, it’s an accurate image of what a place looks like. An absolute literal group of images? You might as well go to a photographer for that. But whatever interpretation I do of it, it has to be informed by reality."

Interview (Video): Joe Sacco gives a talk and reading and is interviewed by Chris Hedges in these two videos presented by the Lannan Foundation (streaming and downloadable audio are also available at the preceding link; via Forbidden Planet International )

Like a Dog

Interview (Video): Justin Skarhus of Itchy Keen Art Friends talks to Zak Sally and our pal Dylan Williams of Sparkplug Comic Books about D'in' it Y, part 1

Meat Cake

Profile: HiLobrow's Joshua Glenn on Dame Darcy: "If she sounds like too much to handle, that’s because she is; now you know why her comic is called Meat Cake — they’re two decadent foods, so why not combine them? Darcy’s world is a child’s garden of verses overrun by drunken mermaids, grave-robbing French maids, and Vitalis-groomed cads. If this sort of thing sounds like your cup of spooky-kooky tea, read Meat Cake..."

Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery

Profile: "I made my quarterly pilgrimage down to the Fantagraphics store in Seattle yesterday, and that store never ceases to amaze anyone who walks into it. From the curator/owner to the punk rock pictures on the wall, to the awesome collection of Fantagraphics titles, traditional comics, underground comics, and some adult stuff tucked away in the back room under the stairs, the entire store is a place to go explore the darker side of comic books." – Dan Morrill, Comics Forge

Ganges #4

Craft: At TCJ.com, Frank Santoro provides a bit of a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the creation of Ganges #4 from a recent visit he had with Kevin Huizenga

Athos in America

Feature: Find out what Kim Thompson's been reading (the image above is one clue/spoiler) as he contributes to this week's "What Are You Reading?" column at Robot 6

Revealed: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 3
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Steve DitkoComing AttractionsBlake Bell 25 May 2011 10:36 AM

Mysterious Traveler: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 3
(cover design subject to change)

At his blog, The Steve Ditko Archives editor Blake Bell spills the beans on the upcoming third volume, Mysterious Traveler, due in January 2012!

"What makes this volume so special," says Blake, "is that meteoric improvement in Ditko’s work as he toils in obscurity for a company that treated their comic books like toilet paper for their more profitable magazine and song books. Such is the irony of one of the great living artists of the 20th century – working with stories churned out for an audience of children, Ditko produced the highest quality material in the industry with no editorial oversight at an amazing pace (all the stories within were produced in 1957 alone)."

Check out Blake's post for the whole scoop, and you can keep up with all the latest updates by "liking" The Steve Ditko Archives Facebook page and/or by following @blake_bell on Twitter.

Daily OCD: 5/23/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Steve DitkoRobert CrumbreviewsPeter BaggeMickey MouseLove and RocketsLewis TrondheimLeslie SteinGilbert HernandezGahan WilsonFloyd GottfredsonDisneyDave McKeanDaily OCDBlake Bell 23 May 2011 8:46 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1: Race to Death Valley

Review: "Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse: Race To Death Valley kicks off Fantagraphics’ latest series of vintage newspaper strips... About halfway through the [first story] arc, ...Gottfredson’s Mickey Mouse begins to develop the characteristics that would sustain it for decades to come: a fast pace, frequent narrow escapes, and an industrious hero who throws himself fully into every endeavor, in ways that both get him into trouble and help get him out. ...Gottfredson... took the broad idea of a good-natured mouse and sketched in his own attitudes about hard work, courage, and the importance of having reliable friends when the jams get especially sticky." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Love from the Shadows

Review: "[Gilbert] Hernandez’s latest book Love from the Shadows is a confounding hybrid, inserting Love And Rockets’ watermelon-chested, lisping Fritz into a violent dream-novel that combines the fluid reality of Luis Buñuel with the two-fisted crime sagas of Jim Thompson. ...[T]he beauty of comics as a medium is that it invites re-reading; and Hernandez’s mastery makes Love from the Shadows easy to pore back over, savoring how its meaning shifts from page to page." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Review: "There’s fiction, there’s Meta-fiction and then there is Gilbert Hernandez.... Now he returns to his eccentric sideline to translate the wildly experimental independent/exploitation/sexploitation tale Love from the Shadows into a stunning graphic rollercoaster ride of broken families, counter-culture angst, embezzlement, greed madness, obsession, charlatanry, psychics and mysterious aliens in possibly the greatest tribute to scurrilous lowbrow movie maestro Russ Meyer ever seen." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

Eye of the Majestic Creature

Review: "Speaking of confounding comics, Leslie Stein’s bizarre Eye of the Majestic Creature collects the first four issues of Stein’s self-published comic.... Stein riffs on loneliness, relationships, creativity, family, and intoxication via cutely psychedelic art and short vignettes that are heavy on fancy and light on explanation. At times the book comes from so deep inside Stein’s head that it reads almost like notes for a comic, not a finished work. But then Stein pivots into a moment or image of deep emotional resonance and beauty... and the loose narrative style pays off. These four issues do get better as they go, so consider this a promising introduction to a potentially major new talent." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Hate Annual #9

Review: "...Peter Bagge is back... with Hate Annual #9, the latest in his yearly reports on the life of his slacker-turned-entrepreneur character Buddy Bradley. Usually Bagge fills out the Hate annuals with strips he’s drawn for other publications throughout the year, but #9 is nearly all Buddy, and it’s one of the best Bradley stories in years... The story is wonderfully digressive in the best Bagge tradition, too..." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Yeah!

Review: "An overt attempt to bring back the silly rock-’n’-roll fun of Josie & The Pussycats and Jem & The Holograms, Yeah! follows the adventures of a girl-group that’s wildly popular on other planets, but can’t get any attention on Earth. ...Yeah! is... a pleasure to read, with an anything-goes storytelling style and an infectious affection for pop music, as well as for pop culture about pop music." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Approximate Continuum Comics

Review: "...[T]he comics in Approximate Continuum constitute a highly amusing portrait of that mostly under-explored time in a person's life when things become more important and more ridiculous in equal measure and we find ourselves constantly and even quietly adjusting to wholesale changes in life and attitude and orientation that we once had hopes to master. It speaks to how well-observed the book is that you could pick it up sans context of any kind and find much to enjoy. ...Approximate Continuum Comics consistently hits the pleasure points afforded by great cartooning and a wicked sense of humor, and should be fair comfort to anyone that feels they're at a point in their life when they need to give themselves a good talking-to." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

Unexplored Worlds: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 2

Review: "Even if you’ve read the first volume [of The Steve Ditko Archives], Unexplored Worlds offers plenty more surprises.... While the 'twists' rarely match up to the initial imagination of any given piece, Ditko’s art is solid throughout. As always, Fantagraphics’ top-notch presentation makes the publisher the go-to stop for comics preservation." – Rod Lott, Bookgasm

R. Crumb (AP Photo)

Interview: At the official R. Crumb website, Alex Wood quizzes Crumb on various historical and pop-cultural figures, from Obama to Tommy James and the Shondells to his underground comix contemporaries to Mozart: "I love the movie Amedeus about him, but the actual music, nnnaaaah."

Nuts [July 2011]

Interview: The Daily Cross Hatch continues serializing Brian Heater's MoCCA panel conversation with Gahan Wilson: "...[T]he world for a kid is often very scary. It’s a huge challenge, and it is often scary. I mean, people die, and what the hell is that all about? I explore that sort of thing in Nuts. The stuff that happens to grownups happens to kids, too — these amazing, awful things. And these often terrific things. And they have to somehow wrap themselves around it."

Celluloid [Pre-Order]

Feature: The guest contributor to this week's "What Are You Reading?" column at Robot 6 is Dave McKean (who, with his erotic graphic novel Celluloid coming out, weighs in with his thoughts on the erotic work of his sometime-collaborator Alan Moore, Lost Girls)

TCAF 2011: Totally Cool And Fun
Written by janice headley | Filed under Zak SallyT Edward BakLorenzo MattottieventsDave CooperBlake Bell 17 May 2011 11:13 AM

I can say, without a doubt, that was the Best TCAF Ever! 

...Okay, fine, so Fantagraphics has only done the Toronto Comics Art Festival twice, but it truly was an amazing year! Thank you so much to Christopher, Peter, Miles, Andrew, Gina, and all the fantastic volunteers of TCAF!

And, of course, one of my favorite things about TCAF?

Timbits

Canadian donuts. Oh yeah.

Fantagraphics setting up at TCAF

Mike and I woke up bright and early to set-up our table. There was a momentary panic when I realized one of our display racks didn't arrive from Seattle, but the stellar staff at the Toronto Reference Library loaned us one of their carts for the weekend so we could get all of our shipment out! Thanks Ab!!

Fantagraphics table at TCAF 2011

This photo serves as proof that we DID bring copies of Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1 (see? on the front corner there) and Wandering Son Book 1 (front and center). They both sold out so quickly, some people thought their debut was a myth, but nope! It's also true that Wandering Son sold out in the first two hours of the show!

Lorenzo Mattotti at TCAF 2011

Not too surprisingly, The Raven was another sell-out, along with Lorenzo's Ignatz title Chimera. (Stigmata was also insanely close to selling out.) And how gracious and kind was Lorenzo Mattotti? I'm envious of everyone who got to attend his panels! He kept modestly insisting his English wasn't very good (it was good!), but his intelligence and great humor shine through in any language! Thank you so much to TCAF and the Italian Cultural Institute for bringing Lorenzo to Toronto!

Lorenzo Mattotti & Zak Sally at TCAF 2011

Lorenzo may have been a "Guest of Honor" at the con, but really, all of our artists were "guests of honor" at the Fantagraphics table!  We feel so lucky to work with some of the nicest people in all of comics, like Zak Sally here (seen with fellow Ignatz artist Mattotti). Not only did Zak do beautiful signings, but "Professor Zak" came out, engaging customers (and us!) with his insane depth of knowledge on comic history! [Note to Zak: I totally wanna see that Osamu Tezuka DVD!]

Dave Cooper & Blake Bell at TCAF 2011

It's not a TCAF without pre-eminent Ditko scholar Blake Bell, and we were thrilled to have Dave Cooper attending TCAF for what we hope was the first of many signings to come!

T. Edward Bak at TCAF 2011

And, of course, it's everyone favorite: T Edward Bak, seen here modeling his sweet new Popeye shirt. Covey, I know you're jealous. Bak split his time between signing with us and signing with Koyama Press, ran by Anne Koyama, aka The Nicest Woman in Comics™. 

Doug Wright Awards

On Saturday night, Mike, Lorenzo and I attended our first ever Doug Wright Awards, where this adorable picture was shown during the induction of David Boswell (far left in the photo) into the "Giants of the North." Yes, that is Daniel Clowes with The Hernandez Brothers and a grunged-out Chester Brown. Awesome.

Peggy Burns at TCAF 2011

Without a doubt, the most romantic moment of TCAF was when Drawn & Quarterly's Tom Devlin surprised Peggy Burns with the prettiest bouquet on Mother's Day! They were the Prom King and Queen of TCAF!

Lorenzo Mattotti & T. Edward Bak

Another favorite moment was watching T Edward Bak and Lorenzo Mattotti at the TCAF After-Party on Sunday night. The two artists bonded over a crazy book T Edward found featuring Heavy Metal-style artwork.  We got on the subject of "First Concerts." Mike and Todd both saw U2 on the Joshua Tree tour, albeit in separate cities. (High fives ensued.) And Lorenzo's first concert? Canned Heat. Just when you thought the guy couldn't get any cooler.

So, as you can see, it was a wonderful time at TCAF! (And there are lots more photos over at the Fantagraphics Flickr page.) Thank you so much to everyone who stopped by the Fantagraphics table to browse or purchase books — we're so grateful for your support and your enthusiasm, and we can't wait to see you again next year!

The Fantagraphics makeshift cashbox at TCAF 2011
The Fantagraphics makeshift cashbox.

Announcing Our TCAF 2011 Schedule
Written by janice headley | Filed under Zak SallyT Edward BakLorenzo MattottieventsDave CooperBlake Bell 5 May 2011 2:02 AM
TCAF poster

Fantagraphics is thrilled to be heading across the border for the Toronto Comic Arts Festival, this weekend, Saturday, May 7th and Sunday, May 8th! Mike Baehr and I will be on hand, and, yes, it's true... we're bringing The Mouse to Canada! In fact, just look at all the new titles we're bringing with us:

Approximate Continuum Comics by Lewis Trondheim
Captain Easy Vol. 2 by Roy Crane
Celluloid by Dave McKean
Congress of the Animals by Jim Woodring
Isle of 100,000 Graves by Jason
Take a Joke by Johnny Ryan
The Raven by Lorenzo Mattotti & Lou Reed
Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1 by Floyd Gottfredson
Wandering Son Book 1 by Shimura Takako
Yeah! by Peter Bagge & Gilbert Hernandez

Indeed, we will have The Raven after all, just in time for you to get your copy signed by artist Lorenzo Mattotti, making the trip all the way from Italy for a very rare international appearance! And he's just one of the many amazing artists signing this weekend!

SATURDAY, MAY 7th
11:30-12:30 pm    T Edward Bak
12:30-1:30 pm      Blake Bell
1:00-3:00 pm       Lorenzo Mattotti (at the Beguiling table)
1:30-2:30 pm        Dave Cooper
2:30-3:30 pm        Zak Sally
3:00-5:00 pm        Paul Pope (at the Beguiling table)
3:30-4:30 pm        Lorenzo Mattotti

SUNDAY, MAY 8th
12:30-1:30 pm      T Edward Bak
1:00-3:00 pm       Paul Pope (at the Beguiling table)
2:00-3:30 pm       Lorenzo Mattotti (at the Beguiling table)
2:30-3:30 pm        Zak Sally
3:30-4:30 pm        Lorenzo Mattotti

Where can you find all this awesome-ness? Swing on by tables #162-163.

TCAF floor map

[ click the map to open a larger version ]

And don't forget to take in some of the great panels organized by TCAF! Listed below are the panels involving Fantagraphics artists, but, really, check out the entire schedule, 'cause there are tons of really interesting talks going on! (Mike, for instance, is especially excited about that "Adventure Time" panel!)

Saturday, May 7th

10:15 – 11:15 am // A15: Root Rot Release
Featuring: T. Edward Bak, Michael DeForge,  Ines Estrada, Bob Flynn, Jesse Jacobs, Hellen Jo, Joseph Lambert, Diana McNally, Robin Nishio, Angie Wang and Mickey Zacchilli
Moderated by Anne Koyama
Location: Learning Center 1
Koyama Press is proud to announce a launch party to celebrate the release of the Root Rot anthology. Ten of the artists will be in attendance for the book’s debut. Come and meet them! Plus live drawing, signings, giveaways and more!

11:30 – 12:15 pm //  A16: Spotlight: Lorenzo Mattotti
Moderated by Robin McConnell
Location: Learning Center 1
Lorenzo Mattotti is recognized today as one of the most outstanding international exponents of comics art. His books have been translated all over the world. Mattoti, a Featured Guest of TCAF, appears here to discuss his life and his work, including his most recent graphic novels Stigmata and The Raven. Mattotti will be interviewed by the host of Inkstuds, Robin McConnell.

1:00 – 2:00 pm //  A4: Creator Roundtable
Panelists: Paul Pope, Brandon Graham, and Sam Hiti
Moderated by Robin McConnell
Location: The Pilot
Paul Pope, Sam Hiti and Brandon Graham are creating modern comics built on a wealth of influences. Joined by Inkstuds host Robin McConnell, they will be exploring the tableau of work that inspires them and how that affects the creative processes in work such as Death Day, Tiempos Finales, King City, Multiple Warheads, 100%, THB and more.

Sunday, May 8th

12:30 – 1:30 pm // U2: Illustration
Panelists: Lorenzo Mattotti, Jillian Tamaki, Adrian Tomine
Moderated by Caitlin McGurk
Location: The Pilot
Many cartoonists also have a career in illustration. Come listen to four prestigious comics artists and illustrators discuss the difference between creating in a narrative form (comics) and a static one (illustration).

1:15 – 2:00 pm // U13: Print Culture
Panelists: Tom K., John Porcellino and Dylan Williams
Moderated by Zak Sally
Location: Learning Center 1
From Comic Books to ‘Graphic Novels,’ from the Undergrounds to Art Comics, Fanzines to Zine Culture — the names may change, but one thing remains constant: they are all reproduced, on paper. No matter the decade, subject matter, or economics involved, comics have always been linked to print. With physical objects no longer being a necessity (and the book form itself on the decline), what will be the role of print culture in the next decade and beyond?

Oh Canada! We'll see you this weekend!









































2011 Eisner Award nominees!
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Stephen DeStefanoRoy CranePirus and MezzoMoto HagiomangaJoyce FarmerJacques TardiDavid BCarol TylerCaptain EasyBlake BellBill Everettawards 7 Apr 2011 5:10 PM

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201102/eisners11_sm.gif

The list of nominees for the 2011 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards has just been announced and we are pleased to report that our artists and publications received 11 nominations in 7 categories for 9 titles:

It Was the War of the Trenches by Jacques Tardi

It Was the War of the Trenches by Jacques Tardi:

• Best Reality-Based Work
• Best U.S. Edition of International Material

Special Exits: A Graphic Memoir by Joyce Farmer

Special Exits: A Graphic Memoir by Joyce Farmer:

• Best Reality-Based Work

You’ll Never Know Book 2: Collateral Damage by Carol Tyler

You’ll Never Know Book 2: Collateral Damage by Carol Tyler:

• Best Reality-Based Work
• Best Painter/Multimedia Artist (interior art) — Carol Tyler

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 1 (1933-1935) by Roy Crane

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 1 (1933-1935) by Roy Crane:

• Best Archival Collection/Project—Strips

King of the Flies, Book One: Hallorave by Mezzo and Pirus

King of the Flies, Book One: Hallorave by Mezzo and Pirus:

• Best U.S. Edition of International Material

The Littlest Pirate King by David B. and Pierre Mac Orlan

The Littlest Pirate King by David B. and Pierre Mac Orlan:

• Best U.S. Edition of International Material

A Drunken Dream and Other Stories by Moto Hagio

A Drunken Dream and Other Stories by Moto Hagio:

• Best U.S. Edition of International Material—Asia

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/covers/2010/bookcover_lucky1.jpg

Stephen DeStefano, Lucky in Love Book One: A Poor Man’s History:

• Best Penciller/Inker or Penciller/Inker Team

Fire and Water: Bill Everett, the Sub-Mariner, and the Birth of Marvel Comics by Blake Bell

Fire and Water: Bill Everett, the Sub-Mariner, and the Birth of Marvel Comics by Blake Bell:

• Best Comics-Related Book

As previously noted, Ernie Bushmiller and Jack Jackson have been inducted via judges' choice into the Eisner Hall of Fame. Winners will be announced at a ceremony on Friday, July 22, 2011 at Comic-Con International in San Diego. Browse and order all of our 2011 nominated titles here, and see here for links to past years' award honorees. Congratulations to all the nominees!

Daily OCD: 4/4/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Steve DitkoPopeyePaul KarasikKim ThompsonJoost SwarteJasonFrank SantoroFletcher HanksEC SegarDaily OCDCatalog No 439Blake Bell 4 Apr 2011 4:07 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

I Killed Adolf Hitler I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets

List: At Techland - Time.com, Douglas Wolk names I Killed Adolf Hitler by Jason and I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets by Fletcher Hanks to a short list of "The Funniest Comics Ever"

Catalog No. 439: Burlesque Paraphernalia and Side Degree Specialties and Costumes

Review: "Last year, Fantagraphics reproduced Catalog No. 439 of the DeMoulin Brothers – the most extensive depiction of initiation contraptions and ritual outfits used by Freemasons and other fraternal orders, like the Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias, and E. Clampus Vitus. Bearing the title Burlesque Paraphernalia and Side Degree Specialties and Costumes, this wacky book may shed a shred of light into the outer sanctum of these associations – unless, of course, it is actually a hoax disseminated to lead us astray. [...] Even if Enlightenment should, as always, prove ever elusive, the illustrated designs of Edmund DeMoulin and the handiwork of his brothers Ulysses and Erastus, as reproduced in Burlesque Paraphernalia, will still deliver amusing, if sadistic, anthropology. [...] Book lovers... will fall for its hundred and fifty full-page plates of machines of untold mischief. " – Jeffrey Wengrofsky, Coilhouse

Unexplored Worlds: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 2

Review/Commentary: "...I end up seeing Ditko’s work arc from earliest 'dependent work' as he calls it, the charming, imaginative comics collected in Unexplored Worlds, the rockets, superintelligent monkeys, green insect aliens seeking earthling wives, paintings that lead to another world, angelic visitors and poetically just twist endings, to his later work created entirely on his own terms and for his own purpose, but less effective as his characters become 'ciphers' and his design, text-heavy." – Carol Borden, The Cultural Gutter

Joost Swarte

Commentary: David Chelsea posts his email debate with Kim Thompson re: Joost Swarte's use of perspective. Kim: "Maybe you aren’t seeing the forest for the trees — or the ground below the trees that comprises the forest because you’re looking at it from a horizontal-oblique perspective." Zing!

TCJ.com

Craft: At TCJ.com, Frank Santoro applies his lessons in page proportion and layout to a Tintin page by Hergé

Popeye Vol. 1: "I Yam What I Yam"

Plug: Robot 6's Tim O'Shea reports that his 11-year-old son is absorbed in Popeye Vol. 1

Sing Me Spanish Ditko
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Steve DitkoBlake Bell 2 Apr 2011 11:32 AM

Ditko Archives en Español

At his blog, Blake Bell reveals that Strange Suspense: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 1 will soon be available in a Spanish-language edition from Diabolo Ediciones, and provides this glimpse of one of the translated pages.

(Post title explained for non-New Pornographers fans, if any.)

Daily OCD: 4/1/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Wilfred SantiagoSteve DitkoRobert CrumbLorenzo MattottiGary GrothDaily OCDBlake BellAnders Nilsen21 1 Apr 2011 5:13 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Robert Crumb (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Profile: At the ABC News website, the AP's Matt Moore talks to Robert Crumb during his recent visit to New York City for his Society of Illustrators exhibit opening: "'It was never intended for that purpose, so it's always odd to see it on a wall, or under glass; it was intended for printing and books. It wasn't made as a wall hanging piece,' Crumb said in an interview with The Associated Press. 'For me, the printed copy is the magic moment. When I see it in print — that was the whole purpose of it.'" (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

GGG

Interview: At Previews, a must-read chat with Gary Groth about our classic strip reprints: "The only criterion is that it’s great cartooning. We wouldn’t waste our time devoting this much time and energy to anything less. Our mission has been to publish the best cartooning — not only in comic strips, but in every 'branch' of the cartooning art — that we can."

21: The Story of Roberto Clemente

Interview: At Robot 6, Chris Mautner talks to Wilfred Santiago about 21: The Story of Roberto Clemente: "I was trying not to make it … biographies to me  have a static feel to them. I was trying to avoid [that] and I feel like cartooning helps you in expressing the story and what you’re trying to convey thtorugh the story. It was difficult too because I wanted it to be cartoony and realistic at the same time. I wanted it to be fun. What’s important was that it was exciting; that it could almost speak. That you could read the book in a very sort of sharp-paced way but you could also take the time and read through it at your leisure."

Anders Nilsen - self-portrait

Interview: Matthew Baker of Vanderbilt University's Nashville Review has an epic chat with Anders Nilsen: "Really I feel like comics is just the most useful category to drop me into. I don’t feel like I’m wedded to comics as a medium. I draw, and I usually sort of tell stories, but I do make standalone drawings and paintings, and I do make stuff that is probably closer to poetry than comics. I’ve made books before that aren’t really comics — just a series of pictures, or diagrams, or whatever."

Stigmata [Pre-Order - with Special Offer]

Review: "Stunning and evocative and rendered in a cacophony of swirling miasmic lines, this fearsome modern parable is a fierce interrogation of faith and destiny which asks uncompromising and uncomfortable questions about the price of Grace and the value of belief. [...] Emotive, shocking and utterly compelling, Stigmata is a grotesque and beautiful metaphysical rollercoaster with existential angst and blind faith gripping each other’s philosophical throats and squeezing really hard. No rational reader or mature comics fan can afford to miss this dark shining delight." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

Review: "This book beautifully captures the phantasmagoric flow of images that occurs in dreams. Mattotti's art is incredible. There are panels that are so intricate that I wonder how he had the time to draw so many of them. At 32 mostly wordless pages it's a very short book, but the imagery, like the panels of a child throwing a toy at a giant, or the panels showing a huge black bird carrying off a rabbit in a rainstorm, will stay with you long after you finish reading. If you like the intense, emotional, sometimes dreamlike artwork Mattotti did for Stigmata, you will love Chimera." – Jon Anderson, The Beguiling

 

[Editor/Marketeer's Note: You can get Chimera for half price when you order Stigmata!]

Strange Suspense: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 1

Plug: CBR's Comics Should Be Good presents Steve Ditko's earliest (by creation date) published story, with a nice shout-out to our Blake Bell Ditko books