I’m really proud of this one, and totally think you should pickup a copy. “The Funny Pages” is a special giant-sized edition of Pink Mince, a loving tribute to the comics. Featuring the work of James Bainbridge, Drub, Sina Evil, Howard Hardiman, Jessie Johnson, Luke Jones, Bill Roundy, and Timothy Thornton.
And then just when I had almost recovered from the startling awesomeness of those Arabic Superman comics, Sean draws my attention to these even more incredibly mind-expanding, soul-enriching examples of incredible illustrations done by Takayoshi Mizuki between 1965 and 1972.
I love all of these so much I might actually weep.BEHOLD THEIR MAJESTY!
Every single one of these covers from old Arabic editions of Superman comics is exquisite, somewhat surreal, and perhaps a nice reminder that Superman only started fighting for the American way in the 50s during the thick of the Cold War. Up until then, a couple of Jewish teenagers just wanted him to fight for truth and justice. Frankly, I think we could all use a little of that, not just the US. Recontextualization FTW!
Before stumbling my way into design and typography while working on my high school newspaper — and discovering that I loved doing that stuf A LOT — my goal in life was to draw comics, which was how I passed quite a lot of my free time and a significant chunk of my time in math and science class before that. (Note: I wasn’t especially good at drawing comics, but I loved it.)
My desire to focus on comics as a profession gave my to a more intense interest in type, but I still dabbled with illustration for a while, and certainly my love for reading comics remained strong. As a designer, too, I’ve always been intrigued by how comics function visually, and how they have their own ways of being narrative. So when I stumble across good advice from talented comic artists, I always take note.
I while back I came across this piece about Wally Wood’s 22 Panels That Always Work, an incredible short guide to effective composition, drawn up by an industry veteran and apparently in unofficial circulation for years. It’s a gem. (Small version here, but you owe it yourself to check out the bigger version.)
Just recently I also came across Bill Griffith‘s Top 40 List on Comics and Their Creation. These are brilliant, but are more about the practical realities of working as a cartoonist in comparison to Wally Wood’s tips, which are more about the comics themselves. And even though a lot of Griffy’s advice is very specific to his model for working, they’re smart and practical and sardonic, which I always like.
Each of these should be considered treasures of the comics form, and contain lots of wisdom for anyone working in a visual medium. Learn them. Consider them. Live them.