28 Years of Dr. Comics and Mr. Games

Dr. Comics, my local comics store had a celebration of 28 years in business. They invited old staff and customers from over the years back.

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Michael Pandolfo has been a great aid to the comics community and the community. Michael gives lots of kids their first job, and helps them figure out how to be an adult in the world. And for those of us who have a hard time figuring things out he still just sells us comics, lots, and lots of comics. The Cap is my thank you present for the 26 years of gab, friendship, and support. It’s drawn in Flash 6 on the computer and inked with brushes on paper as I slowly work my back into an organic style.


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The bloody story of preening maniacs fighting over control of ancient Rome. Adapting into 200 pages of thundering expressionistic comics. For sale in print here!

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Teaching Comics not Code

The Cartoon Art Museum asked me to teach a class in comics for adults. Seeing a student’s brain light up as they grasp knowledge they never thought they could master, is rewarding. So of course I said yes.

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I had fifty years of obsessing about comics to compress into five weeks. I was going to stuff it all into their heads. I broke the classes down into Structure, Plot ,Pattern Languages, Light and Time and Color.

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Patterns in Kirby’s Work

Being able to pull skills from other artists work is hard, it involves analyzing their work. Summarizing it for yourself, then using it in a way that isn’t totally derivative. The goal is to not swipe or just steal others work.

Here are four two panels sequences from Jack Kirby’s Forever People #8 that I’ve redrawn. One part of my daily practice is just to draw Kirby every day to add the work into my hand.

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In 3 Kirby adroitly pairs closeups with three quarter sequence.
By placing a large shape next to smaller shapes the impact of each is stronger.
Shapes of all the same size create a monotone pace, something that Kirby wasn’t interested in.

In the fourth two panels, he jumps from extreme close up to full figures.
A modification and one that is a great lead into an action sequence.

We could focus on the figures gestures and use this for the stick figure stage of drawing.
Or look at the structure of his forms,how he handles light or the rendering, but lets just focus on the one part of the drawing right now.
By writing up a pattern I can have an easy way to remember this for myself.

Name: Close Up to Three Quarter heads
Description: In a two panel sequence make one head large filling most of the panel. The second make the head three quarter and include others in the composition so that we have a sense of where we are.
Usage: Within conversations when a point needs to be emphasized by a close up. Check a sequence within the 100s drawing to use it at least once to add punch to it.

Next: Using a pattern to edit my work

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