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Brian Denham, Master of Digital Ink

By Richard Serrao

Just last week we posted 5 Reasons to draw in pen and ink, however we often come across amazing artists who create their art in the digital realm. Our interview with Dan Mumford continues to be one of our most popular Master of Ink features. Brian Denham is another such artist who rocks a Cintiq instead of a 2 or 3-ply comic board. The results are rather stunning. It’s his run on Iron Man: Hypervelocity that really made me stand up and take notice of his work.

First professional work (piece / year) and maybe a quick story behind it.

My first pin-up was a double page image of Badrock in Youngblood Battlezone.

I self-published a comic that Rob Liefeld saw, and he hired me a week later at San Diego Comic-Con in 1994. I was told to start work on Monday following the show. Todd Nauck was kind enough to let me stay at his place for 2 weeks. I got to work on Monday and did a ton of pi-ups of different things that hopefully will never see print. Rob liked how I drew Badrock and told me to do layouts for a pin-up of him. I made it a double-page spread of Badrock smashing through a wall. Rob loved it, had it inked and colored and told me it was replacing his image of Badrock he was going to draw for this Battlezone book. A week later at the comic shop there it was on the shelf, so ten days after starting at Extreme my first pro work hit the stands. That was mind-blowing!

My first pro book was Violator Vs. Badrock.

McFarlane sent Liefeld the prototype Spawn toys before any of them ever shipped. Rob was in a meeting messing around with Violator and Badrock when an idea struck, he came into the bullpen and told me he had a mini-series for me. It was Violator Vs. Badrock. Rob told me I drew monsters great and was always on the look for something just like this for me to draw. He asked me who I wanted to write the script and I answered, “Alan Moore.” He told me there was no effing way that we could get Alan Moore, and I told him, “You’re Rob Liefeld. You can do anything.” Rob lit up and went to this office and came back later and said. “Ok. Alan More is writing you’re book.” That was crazy. I was so emotionally shocked but I tried to play it off.

Self-taught or formally educated? (or mixture of both, mentors etc…)

I’m self-taught. My 6th grade art teacher told me I was not very good and I should take another elective. I stuck with it though and I would hang out in the school library and read art books and books on the masters. I would interpret all that info for comics though as that was my life-goal. I found a book in High School reprinting Neal Addams Batman in black and white and I had that checked continually. It was a good teacher. After that I would go to the local con at the time, The Dallas Fantasy Fairs where I met local artist Kerry Gammill. He became a mentor to me and would always tell me things to improve. We are friends to this day. He helped me and John Cassaday as well.

Tools of the trade: Taking a quick glance over at your pens, brushes etc…what tools have you mainly been using over the last few years?

I work exclusively on the computer with Adobe Illustrator. I had a Wacom Intuos since 2000, but I recently upgraded to a 21ux Cintiq.

I use Illustrator over Photoshop because my brother bought me the program. It was frustrating as hell, but I stuck with it and made myself learn to draw on it. Then one day when I was working at Top Cow I got the idea to draw comics on it and I figured out some things that would allow me to do that. Peter Steigerwald told me there was no way anyone could draw a comic on the computer at a good speed and I wanted to prove him wrong.

I like that Illustrator keeps the line art crisp and not pixelated even when zoomed. I love that my final file sizes are under 2meg. It lets me work on a cheaper PC while maintaining good quality line art.

If you are curious about my process, I have a blog on drawing comics in Illustrator at http://www.illcraft.com for you to check out. Start reading from the first post.

Favorite brand of ink:

Pixels. For a serious answer- I love sketching with Bic pens.

Type of paper:

Notebook or napkins. I like the disposable nature of them. Makes me feel like I’m not on stage performing and I can just express myself however I want.

Which artists or creators do you return to for a quick boost of inspiration? Who are the masters of ink?

More than I can name, but mostly: Greg Capullo, Berni Wrightson, Frank Frazetta, Eric Canete, Alan Davis, Jose Luis Garcia Lopez, Marc Silvestri, Bryan Hitch, John Buscema, Joe Quesada, Jim Lee, Oliver Coipel, Jorge Zaffino, Enrico Marini, J.C. Leyendecker, Adam Warren, Clamp, Tetsuro Ueyama and a bunch of European and Japanese artists.

Once a client has handed off an illustration job to you, how do you first tackle the job? Could you give us a quick overview of your process?

I open the script in Open Office and copy each page of script into a Illustrator file and save each page as a separate file.

I break each page down by page creating loose sketches of the scene.

I draw the art in a standard comic-sized template I created in Illustrator CS3, which has the official pro borders and Live art area indicated.

I create panel shapes and convert them to clipping paths. I number the panel layers per panel then create sub-layers to keep each panels art. After my sketches look good I lower the opacity level and change the line art to red. I then go to each panels layer and create the art as “inked” art. Meaning my next stage would have been tight pencils if I were using paper but since it’s black art on the computer I go from sketch to finished art.

After the art is completed I go back over it with white and highlight some area that need it, like cracks, or armor rings or spit, blood, stars or splatter.

I save the art in multiple formats for future needs. I email my editors and let them know I’m finished with that page. I’ll email it if asked or place if on their ftp.

When completed with 5 pages at DC or 11 at Marvel I’ll submit a voucher for my work and I’ll get paid within 2 weeks.

What’s currently sitting in your mp3 / CD player / turntable?

Mostly podcasts. I call or text multiple podcasts on Talkshoe each week that relate to pop-culture and comics. BigFanBoy, Tim’s Late Night Lounge, Mighty Sabo and Son, Breaking The Panels all of which are available on Talkshoe or iTunes.

When I’m not doing those shows I listen to Pandora.com’s Trip Hop channel.

I love Bollywood soundtracks!

I really like funky music ala Operator Please.

What’s hanging on your walls and what is your favorite piece of art that you own (not created by you)?

I like to keep my walls free of artwork. I do have an autograph X-Files 1 comic in a frame signed by Frank Spotnitz, and Chris Carter that he signed “I Made This”

I have an autograph of Ray Bradbury on the wall. He signed my con badge at Comic Con last year. I used to read Fahrenheit 451 because I liked seeing my last name in print as Denham Dentrifice. It inspired me to make it happen on my own as an adult.

I have a Ray Park and a Kandyse McClure autograph they gave me for drawing on trucker caps.

I have a couple of art images I made on my walls and the Marine Corps flag. Clutter free beyond that.

Last novel you read and last movie that you saw (that you’d recommend)

The Road was the last novel I read and I’ll recommend the movie; Star Trek!

Current and upcoming projects.

I am working on Starcraft right now. I’m also working on a creator-owned as I await approval. I’m slowly working on my webcomic at DenhamShorts.com and I’m drawing some art for How To Draw Super-Powered Heroes from Antarctic Press, shipping in June. I drew the cover for President Evil in July, and I’m working on How To Draw Super-Powered Villains for August.

What would you tell an aspiring artist who is working his ass off but still needs and wants to break through to the next level?

Put your art online and seek professional level critique. I mean ask some pros to give it to you on the level without any BS and listen. I recently asked some pro friends of mine to give me a no BS assessment of my art and it helps. Most of it I knew but didn’t want to admit, and the rest were great tips. We can all do better. We are all learning. Share your work, inspire others and seek honest review.

For more info on Brian Denham head on over to http://www.briandenham.com/

Weekly Roundup: Grant Morrison, IP A-holes, Green Lantern and chopping up your writing.

Weekly Arts, Comix and Media round up for May 27th, 2009
by Jason Thibault

It’s been another busy week on the internets. A lot of stuff going on in the comics industry with the convention season upon us. A lot going on in the social media space as well, just cuz there always is.

Comics
Heidi over at the Beat posted on the new upcoming documentary on comics writer and cult icon Grant Morrison. The internet was abuzz late last week when a trailer for said documentary was released.

She also digs up some old gems in Comics Archaeology this week and makes me sorta miss the way things used to be.

Comic lettering legend Todd Klein wrote a nice article on creating a lettering sampler.

Smoky man has a chat with artist Chris Sprouse over at the Sardinian Connection on breaking into comics, art styles and working with Alan Moore.

Jock can really draw his ass off. Love these Batman sketches.

Scott McCloud hipped us to this really cool webcomic, Man-Machine with a side-scrolling interface.

Comic News showcases a really cool Fan-Made Green Lantern Trailer. The creator Jaron Pitts grabbed bits and pieces from  30 other films, worked some Adobe AfterEffects magic and came up with a rather slick looking result. Warner Bros. (or whomever is making the real movie) is going to have to haul ass to rival this.

Paul Pope shows a killer 2-page spread of his work on an old DC classic, Adam Strange by for DC’s new Wednesday Comics.

Over the Memorial Day long weekend MTV splash page spoke with comic legend Joe Kubert discussing his experiences during the Korean War.

Tom Spurgeon of Comics Reporter features his annual Comic-Con By The Numbers: 100 Tips For Attending San Diego’s CCI 2009!

The Erudite Baboon does a piece on the creative process…and does it in style in the form of a webcomic.

Topless Robot tells us the 5 Things Comic Book Movies Need to Stop Doing.

Johanna at Comics Worth Reading talks about breaking into comics, by going back to an old-school book that you need to read if you’re considering trying to enter the profession. I still have my old dog-eared copies of Lurene Haines’ books.

Josh Flanagan takes us through several comic scripting programs for writers over at Comixup on Pop Culture Shock.

On The Business of Art

TechDirt continues along with their discussions on future business models for creators with last week’s More Artists Recognizing The New Business Model: Sell The Scarcity.

Artist Evan Roth has initiated the Intellectual Property Asshole Competition. He recreated two famous images of President Obama in the form of paintings and has put them up for sale. He’s awaiting a cease and desist order from lawyers repping  Shepard Fairey and/or the  Associated Press.

Finance Your Freedom made some solid points on Why the Job-ification of Your passion can be the ticket to hating your life.

Simply badass new concert poster designs by Rhys Cooper who never fails to impress with his drawing skills. I want ‘em…all.

Angela Ferraro-Fanning at Freelance Switch featured 72 stunning business card designs from http://creattica.com/. My faves were the FridgeWorks and Muku designs. But I have a pretty kickass biz card of my own.

You need to go check out both versions of Aaron Horkey’s Flight of the Conchords Poster. I’d buy the second one but good luck on that.

Kevin tong shows us how to properly ship a poster.

Writing

Last week over at Write to Done, there’s a pair of articles on thinning out your writing and removing the unnecessary. First up was Leo with The Elegant Art of Writing Less. Then Mary Jaksch followed up with Wordflab Surgery. They’re a great pair of articles and a good refresher on how easily our writing can become bloated. There’s some fun to be had on the comments as well. Personally all it took for me was reading a few James Ellroy novels. Out went the adjectives and adverbs.

Internet Life and Social Media

Wired posted on the continuing oddities of the PirateBay trial. Last week the judge reviewing Pirate Bay trial bias was removed for bias. They also featured a report on How Game Design Can Revolutionize Everyday Life.

On mashable there were three very handy articles. First up was their PrintFriendly Makes Blogs Printable Video. And two for Twitter users; Top 5 Ways to Share Videos on Twitter and HOW TO: Create Custom Twitter Backgrounds.

FOX’s director of publicity exerts control on Dollverse Fansite making the corporation look like quite the assholes in the process.

And finally Rama wonders if Brad Pitt is cool enough to play Steve McQueen in an upcoming biopic on the manliest of manly actors from the 60’s and 70’s.

Five Reasons to Draw with Pen and Ink on Paper (and sometimes big)

by Jason Thibault

Now that computers and the internet have overtaken the world I sometimes fear that a lot of the traditional things that we take for granted will slowly begin to disappear. It may be an irrational fear as the internet has also brought to light amazing factions of creators in different pockets of the globe.

I’ve been noticing new practices taking hold in the comics, manga and illustration professions. Digital inking, Wacom tablets (yes they are cool) replacing pens, vectors overtaking hand-drawn artwork and a strong reliance on Illustrator and Photoshop. Don’t get me wrong, this is not a knock against utilizing those techniques. I have seen some amazing art created on Macs and PCs. I just don’t want it to get too carried away. I have never personally experimented with digital drawing suites like Manga Studio and I will one day when I get the time. For now I continue to love getting my hands dirty with ink and owning a growing collection of original pages and illustrations.

The main reasons to draw by hand

1. Permanence. If you create your pages with a half-decent ink on acid-free paper your artwork will survive for decades and perhaps centuries. Paper is still the most portable storage format. Digital works are stored on your hard drive, CDRom, DVD or back-up tape. But digital file types and storage mediums change each decade. We backed up files on tape in the 1980’s and part of the 90’s. Then we used zip cartridges. Then DVDRoms and portable hard drives. Meanwhile paper is still paper. My stack of originals is nicely filed away in a flat drawer. I still like to keep photocopies and high resolution digital backups though just in case.

2. Mastering techniques. I realize it takes years and a lot of artistic skill to render quality digital paintings and drawings but there’s just something more immediate about pen on paper or brush on canvas. Whether it’s spending years figuring out how to perfectly sharpen your pencil or the exact pressure needed when drawing lines with a dipping nib or technical pen. It could involve changing up your ink brand, paper type and size or finally investing in some high quality Windsor & Newton watercolor brushes. I’m sure we’ll arrive at a day where students will sit around a live model and sketch them with their wacoms into a laptop. I just hope that day doesn’t arrive too soon.

3. The monetary value of having an original. I realize most art out there isn’t worth much more than the paper or canvas that it was created on and that’s often not the point when creating it. But what about down the line? What if the creator strikes it big? Having a back catalog of originals could become quite lucrative in that case. The idea of parting with my originals pains me but my grandkids might not have the same issues. And although I know it’s happened, it’s not often that we visit a gallery to view a showing of digital print-outs.

4. Drawing Big. Once again I realize a computer screen can become an infinite canvas if you zoom in and out far enough. But the sheer power of wild brush strokes on a larger sheet of paper still captivates me. I was so used to crafting comic pages on 11″ x 17″ sheets that I thought I may be confined to those dimensions forever. Then I went to a few comic art exhibits. I saw original pages by Dan Clowes and Chris Ware which were much larger. It completely changed my mindset. And seeing that Paul Pope creates comics on pages as large as 19″ x 24″ was a revelation. And in the art world larger sized works often do command higher prices.

5. Having a completely portable skill set. If you can draw you can draw anywhere. If you’re well practiced with pen or pencil you can draw in your studio, at a cafe, park, bus station, prison etc… No need to boot up software or rely on electricity. Back in the 1990’s R. Crumb traded in a box of sketchbooks for a villa in France. You probably won’t be able to trade in your old laptops and digital printouts and get the same deal.

A Pen and Ink Love In
I wanted this particular blog post to be more of a celebration of the amazing array of hand-created artwork that’s out there and specifically works that are rendered in pencil, pen and ink. I’m hoping the next generation of art students and bedroom illustrators embrace the techniques of the past as they forge on ahead crafting new styles and merging the practical with the digital.

In this next part I’m going to focus on comic artists but I’ve mixed in a couple of poster artists and illustrators as well. I’ve kept the number down to around a dozen artists but I could have easily put 50 or 60 (or 500 or 600) more up here. Every artist listed below is one that I hold in high regard. Some have influenced me while others I simply stand in awe of to both their talent and dedication to their craft.

Florian Bertmer
Florian Bertmer is an incredible draftsman who’s taken influences such as Pushead but run with it into a darker direction. He’s a German artist who creates art for posters, t-shirts and album covers.

Paul Pope
Paul Pope is the perfect melding of European, Japanese and old-school American cartoonists. And he draws big. On his large-sized boards he deftly creates his comic book masterpieces. He’s one of the aforementioned artists that I simply stand in awe of. The good people at First Second books will be releasing his out of print series THB this fall. The Beguiling comic shop in Toronto has a lot of his art for sale.

Aaron Horkey
There’s no point in trying to ever draw more detailed than Aaron Horkey. His unique artwork adorns record covers, t-shirts and fast to sell-out prints. There’s nobody out there quite like him. His hand-lettering is elegant enough to make dozens of artists want to quit and change professions. His ink illustrations are so intricate that they actually blow the art up in size (rather than the standard procedure of reducing) before printing it. I’m the proud owner of several of his silk-screened prints which is the only affordable way to obtain his art. His originals fetch thousands of dollars when you can manage to find one for sale.

Jae Lee
I’ve been in love with the art of Jae Lee ever since first buying up all of the issues of Namor that he worked on in the early 90’s. Despite the murky coloring and poor-quality newsprint that Namor was printed on his edgey style cut through. He became a fan favourite while he was very young. He continually refined his style by at first taking a looser approach following after Bill Sienkiewicz, Barron Storrey and Kent Williams. After a hiatus he came back in the early 2000’s sporting a more realistic approach yet still with the jagged edges and razor thin lines that he was always known for. He must have gone through an oil tanker worth of black India ink throughout his career.
In 2006 it was announced that he would be providing art for the Marvel adaptation of Stephen King’s Dark Tower series. He worked strictly in pencils for this project and colorist Richard Isanove darkened his grey tones to black in Photoshop and went to town with them. Check out his originals at the Albert Moy Gallery.

Lee Bermejo has risen to the cream of the crop of the comix industry. He came out of the gate around 10 years ago working for Wildstorm where his work looked like it had been created by a seasoned pro despite his young age. You don’t hear much from him on the interwebs. We snagged an interview with him recently but he has no website or much of a presence online. You can however find his gallery over at Splash Page Art. I’m guessing he’s too busy busting out insane amounts of detail on his artwork to bother much with the internet. His graphic novel Joker (written by Brian Azzarello) was and is a bestseller. It hit stores shortly after The Dark Knight was in theatres.
As amazing as he is with pen and ink it’s his recent style that he’s been developing over the last few years that has found him new fans. He creates textures and layers with pencil and then highlights and outlines the shapes with ink.

Brian Hitch made everyone in comics take notice of him and his art when he joined Warren Ellis for the first 12 issues of The Authority. The two of them helped to make famous the more cinematic “widescreen” approach of comics in the late 1990’s. But it was his five-year run with Mark Millar on Marvel’s Ultimates that sent his name soaring into the stratosphere. His masterful combination of exaggerated super-heroic realism pushed front and centre over painstakingly rendered backgrounds has won him hundreds of thousands of admirers. And artist Paul Neary must have the patience of a Buddhist monk to have inked a lot of those pages.
You can find a lot of Hitch and Neary original art over at The Art of Comics. And if you have a spare two or three grand sitting around you could commission an original.

Tim Bradstreet
It’s no secret to anyone who’s followed Optimum Wound for a while that we’re big fans of Tim Bradstreet’s artwork. When I happened upon his book Maximum Black I was immediately inspired to start experimenting with realism and photorealism and I haven’t looked back since. Tim’s style has also evolved over the years and his graphic design skills are razor sharp. He’s brought a movie poster and book jacket sensibility to comic covers and won himself a legion of fans in the process.
Tim Bradstreet’s art is always a source of inspiration around these parts.

Geoff Darrow
I was blown away by the art of Geoff Darrow from the first moment a friend showed me a copy Hard Boiled. I needed to see more. Unfortunately Geoff takes a long time to create his painstakingly detailed artwork. The originals (that I’ve seen listed on eBay) are massive in size. I believe the pencils are done on illustration paper and then the inks are drawn on a vellum overlay. He could have rested on his laurels after working on the production designs for the Matrix trilogy but he cut no corners when working on his most recent series, Shaolin Cowboy.

Sean Phillips
Sean Phillips is one of the most reliable artists current working in comics. Whether he was working on one of my favourite series of the past decade, Sleeper or earning a bigger paycheque on Marvel Zombies I am always inspired by the results. He described the look of his style on Criminal as Kent Williams inking Mike Mignola. He has a nice chunky realistic style and extremely intuitive design skills when it comes to laying out panels on a page. He’s also quite an accomplished painter. You can go to Splash Page Art to see Sean Phillip’s gallery of originals for sale.

Bill Sienkiewicz has always been one of my absolute favourite artists. I treasure my copies of Elektra Assassin. I feel he’s the artist mainly responsible for bringing the look of organized chaos to mainstream comics. Melding the bold illustration styles of the 1980’s with Neal Adams, Ralph Steadman and probably a million other influences Bill knocked us on our asses with his wild drawings and layouts. From his more realistic subject portrayals in his commercial art projects to his “far-out” experiments in series like Stray Toasters he has never let us become bored with him.
It’s his collaborations with Alan Moore on Big Numbers and Brought to Light that really did it for me and showed what could done with the comics medium.

And finally I’ll leave you with a piece called Lafourcade II by an art collective known as Anville. This is a 16″ x 40″ ink on bristol drawing. The detail is staggering on it.

And of course need we mention…
Jason Shawn Alexander

and Danijel Zezelj

So what compels you to keep drawing?

Photography Credits:

Both photos at the top were used under a Creative Commons License.
The History of Tape Storage, photo by Pargon
Photo of man sketching by sashafatcat


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A bunch of new pen and ink sketches, illustrations and an acrylic painting

Richard Serrao has been doing a pile of Movie Review illustrations

We’ve been keeping busy on the artistic front here at Optimum Wound. Richard has ground out new pages for Memento Mori and a bunch of new illustrations that he’s been doing to accompany movie reviews that he’s been posting on his blog. It’s a novel concept and one that’s been garnering a lot of positive feedback from his fans. There’s already a million movie review blogs out there that feature the same trailers, movie stills and poster art in their articles. Rich thought he’d mix it up by adding pen and ink illustrations to the mix.

He’s been employing a more realistic chunkier style to his ink drawings with an even heavier use of black (if that’s possible) than can be found in his two comic series Memento Mori and Silent Scream. It’s a style that he intends to bring over to his comic art.

richard-serrao-punisher-warzone-2-pen-and-inkRay Stevenson as Punisher in War Zone, ink on paper.

richard-serrao-punisher-warzone-1-pen-and-ink

Illustration from Punisher War Zone review, ink on paper.

richard-serrao-midnight-meat-train-2-pen-and-ink

Illustration of Vinnie Jones from Midnight Meat Train, ink on paper

richard-serrao-midnight-meat-train-1-pen-and-ink

Close up of Vinnie Jones, ink on paper.
richard-serrao-midnight-meat-train-3-pen-and-ink

Subway Rampage! Illustration from Midnight Meat Train review, ink  & pencil on paper.
richard-serrao-bruce-lee-2-pen-and-ink

Bruce Lee, ink on paper.

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Bruce Lee, ink on paper.richard-serrao-heath-ledger-joker-2-pen-and-ink

Heath Ledger as the Joker, from the Dark Knight, ink on paper.

Jay’s been grinding out pen and ink sketches

It has been a long while, too long since I’ve updated my webcomic, Battles Without Living Witnesses. Taking over publishing and marketing duties for Optimum Wound took a heavy toll on my artistic output. I needed to get back into the fray so I started grinding out single image illustrations and sketches. I did them in a slightly looser approach than previously used. Still very realistic but not as tight as my older comic work. It was very liberating attacking the pages without concern for every square millimeter being perfect.

I grabbed a pile of 11” x 17” pages and went to town on them with a Hunts 102 nib to lay down the lines and followed up with an old paint brush that refuses to die. I’m going to experiment with some comic pages using this style. I recreated several drawings that I had given away for contests as well as some new ones that are protptypes for future stories. Hope you like ‘em.

richard-dragunov-pen-and-ink-jason-thibault-117″ x 11″, ink on paper.
Simon-Guns-pen-and-ink-jason-thibault

17″ x 11″, ink on paper.
richard-ar15s-pen-and-ink-jason-thibault

11″ x 17″, ink on paper.
Chris-2-Uzis-pen-and-ink-jason-thibault

11″ x 11″, ink on paper.

richard-m14-pen-and-ink-jason-thibault-1

11″ x 17″, ink on paper.

An acrylic painting by Fiona Ho

Fiona, our third member of Optimum Wound and graphic design wunderkind got busy laying down some paint on canvas. This is a rendering of Quan Yin also known as Guanshi’yin the Chinese goddess of mercy. This is one of the larger paintings that Fiona has done. It’s going to be part of a series. Fiona is equally capable rocking a paintbrush, wacom tablet, pen and ink or pencil.

fiona-ho-quan-yin-acrylic-on-canvas

24″ x 36″, acrylic on

Weekly Art, Media & Comix Roundup for May 20, 2009

by Jason Thibault
These are interesting and difficult times. Entire mediums are being reconfigured for the net. This week we see a lot of action on the electronic document and reader (Kindle) front. There’s still a lot of exciting things going on in comics and artists are finding new ways to both express and support themselves.

Arts and comics
Before I get too far into this I’ll urge you to go read Tom Spurgeon’s discussion with Darwyn Cooke and Ed Brubaker sticking mainly to the subject of the impending graphic novel adaptation of Richard Stark’s The Hunter. It was posted a week and a half ago but it took me a while to finish reading it. Highly recommended.

There’s a fantastic retrospective over at Master Post on artist David Mazzucchelli who once worked on Batman Year One and other mainstream comics before moving on to loftier ambitions.

Rob Zombie Explains Delay Of ‘El Superbeasto the animated film adaptation of his comic series originally published by Image Comics.

Joey Manley reminds us that Comics Are Fast and Cheap, and These Are Good Things.

Twitip posts some useful info on Twitter for Cartoonists.

Here’s a trailer for Jason Shawn Alexander’s and James Kuhoric’s Dead Irons.

Kleefeld had two insightful posts that definitely warrant reading, The future of comic distribution and continuing on that line of thinking another one on Haven distribution.

Jim Sizemore talks about his copy of Speedball Text Book: Lettering Poster Design for Pen or Brush with lots of great page shots invluded.

Gadgeteer reviews SureFire’s (Nearly Indestructible) Pens.

Cagle has an insightful essay on The Future of Political Cartoon Syndication where he runs through scenarios that have already been attempted and their resulting outcomes and posits on other solutions.

Design
Freelance switch posted a great article on The Power of Typography in Design. They also have some suggestions on steps to follow What to do when someone steals your work?.

Ministry of Type has an article up on the the dollar redesign project where you can see artists reinvent currency from around the world using a modern design aesthetic.

On Being an artist in the 21st Century
Oregon Live covers the unique collaboration between photographer Didier Lefevre, artists Emmanuel Guibert and colorist Frederic Lemercier in their piece, Into the heart of misery: A graphic novel takes readers into Afghanistan. Lefevre shot thousands of pictures of Afghanistan back in 1986 while accompanying Doctors Without Borders and 23 years later the other two creators added drawings and turned the collection of mainly unpublished photos into a graphic novel.

Here’s a profile on Lorraine Souza Galindez who has developed a keen business sense over the years and has managed to eek out a living from her artwork since 1974. She owns a silk-screening company and has sold over 21,000 signed pen-and-ink lithographs. Inspiration and food for thought.

Juxtapoz posted two great videos this week. The first was on Los Angeles based photographer Estevan Oriol who has spent years documenting the rougher aspects of inner city life. His photos demonstrate a hard won trust between artist and subject. The second vid features Alexandre Farto aka Vhils who takes graffiti in Portugal to a previously unseen level.

All E-Books All the Time
The Washington Post has an article on social publishing site Scribd has added e-commerce to their platform. Publishers are to receive 80% of the revenue from sold documents and e-books. Search Engine Journal adds to the conversation further elaborating on Scribd’s e-book store. And finally Mashable also chime in taking the YouTube for documents becomes iTunes for documents angle. Unfortunately this is limited to the United States only.

Adding to last week’s topic of the new Amazon Kindle they’ve now opened up their platform to bloggers. SEO Book covers this in their post Submit Your Blog to Amazon.com & Become a Kindle Publisher. And Wired mag lets you know Why E-Books Look So Ugly. Further to that TechDirt has One More Reminder That You Don’t Own The Books On Your Kindle.

Social Media
David Bullock outlines the changing face of social media and Jennifer Horowitz at Search Engine Journal discusses the The seven deadly sins of social media.

Finally a trailer has arrived for the highly anticipated the John Hillcoat directed film adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, with Viggo.