To be fair, Johnny’s parents are dead too, Pete. Well, depends on the storyline…but sometimes you have parents so…yeah. Comics.
This was the first comic where I laid down a significant amount of blacks. I read in a book that that creates depth. Man, this reading lark has been crazy useful. Honestly, I’ve always been afraid of using too much black. In my pre-photoshop days a lot of black could kill a picture, and there was no (easy) way to take it back. In my high school art class there were signs everywhere that said, “Go DARKER” because my teacher knew we all sucked with gradient variation. Brrrr….it still haunts me.
I think I’m beginning to understand all these art things that I’ve known, but because I’m reading books that finally tell me how to apply it. I’m not saying my teachers didn’t teach application, I just probably wasn’t listening. The inking book I’m reading went through how determining a black, white, and gray layer for your comic panels’ foreground, middleground, and background will make depth. Now I’m not afraid of applying blacks anymore. Crazy.
Bonus pic for today:
A local website is running a contest for Dark Knight Rises movie tickets if you submit a picture. I WANT THOSE TICKETS.
I imagine it’s obvious that I like Marvel a lot. I don’t want to say that I like them over DC, but I think they’ve given me more to like over the years. That can change at any moment though. I am completely enamored with Scott Snyder’s/Greg Capullo’s Batman. The Court of Owls is a welcome addition to his Rogues, and I don’t think the art could be better. It’s so stunning I have to sit and stare at pages. A lot.
Oh man, then there’s Manapul’s Flash! Barry isn’t my guy (Wally, come back to me) but that doesn’t alter the quality of that artwork. An awesome painted style? That’s Cooverlike and Thompsonish and is the style chosen for an A-List character? Be still my beating heart. Not to mention the inventive lettering…..
I guess my point here is: Yes, if asked, I can gush about DC pretty easily. But what’s weird about it – I don’t want to draw DC. At least for me, DC is very insular and in command of their universe (varying quality of different books aside…). I just can’t add anything to the DC conversation. Especially because that conversation is serious times. Worlds be ending son, and we do not have time for potty jokes. Of course, fans can draw anything they want, but I like to think that when I draw things I stay true to the characters. For instance, that Batman up there is not Batman. Which is why it’s fun, but not something I really revel in drawing. And since I don’t want to draw brooding, I retreat to the offices across the street.
I laugh when I read Spider-Man and Fantastic Four. I laugh when I read a lot of Marvel comics for that matter (Wolverine and the X-Men..). Scott Snyder and Jeff Lemire make me want to assume a fetal position and never uncurl. (You too, Joe Hill, but you’re IDW). If Booster Gold/Blue Beetle was still being written, I know that I’d have promised fun times. I can’t think of another giggle-worthy entry from DC.
That doesn’t make their line bad, it just has a different objective. While I love reading that universe, it’s not something I want to draw. Nor, since I’m cartooning-inclined, do I think I have the chops to pull off a serious superhero. I would guess all of this stems from the basis of wish-fulfillment. I’m not a dude, so growing up to have 12-pack abs and leap over buildings wasn’t something I wanted. I did and do want to forge strong interpersonal relationships, and to a kid/adult that spends too much time in her head, Marvel had the creators that were fulfilling that wish. That weird people could find family (X-Men) that struggling families could overcome (Fantastic Four) and that odd dudes that spent too much time in their heads could connect to others (Spidey). The fact that these tales were brought to me covered in cosmic problems with giant monsters and explosions? Yes, please.
Obviously DC has those stories too. But which character got that treatment seemed to come from the author writing them, not because it’s in the characters’ DNA. I would love the opportunity to learn I’m way off. Books suggestions are always welcome. But from what I know now, you’re not allowed to write an FF story without them fighting in space. It just doesn’t work. That’s why I keep makin’ my drawings Marvel.
Thanks for stopping!
Characters © DC and Marvel Comics. Creative content © Sheli Hay.