Yet another astute reader has shared some sequential art with me for use in this column as a means to discuss one of his favorite comic formats. Check it out! (Learn Italian: Archivio.)
The above is written and drawn by The Mutt. Click to enlarge.
In Italy, all comics are called fumetti, but here in America it's come to mean photocomics in particular. The Mutt's let you in on the general history of the form-- and now, here I am to talk about its implications into the future.
Most fumetti you see in the States these days is on the web, and out of that, a lot of it is usually done with action figures, like the aforementioned Twisted Toyfare Theater. But let's not discount some excellent work like A Softer World, which I've discussed before. Hell, I've seen some photocomic work done everywhere, even in little magazines used as teaching aids in high school Spanish classes. Then again, the form is popular in Spain and Latin America...
Fumetti's been used in some other great work, like Alan Moore and J.H. Williams' Promethea series, but it hasn't caught on with American print publishers, for some reason. Marvel was going to publish a photocomic series in Mark Millar's 1984, but plans have since changed-- it's now going to be drawn by Tommy Lee Edwards. It's a shame-- not because Edwards won't do a fantastic job, because I know he will (he's one of the best artists currently in comics), but because the form of photocomics could use more exposure. There's loads of potential waiting to be tapped.
I'd love to do a photocomic, myself. It'd be a worthwhile experiment. Heck, I know a few photo people, so that dream may come true one day. Until then, I'll be sitting around waiting for the American comics populace to come to terms with the form and start using the damn thing. A lot of times, the work comes off as stiff or amateurish-- but, as always, a good and creative artist can turn the form into something spectacular. Many artists use photo reference all the time-- heck, some of them just trace 'em-- so why not remove a few steps and cut straight to the source?
How about you? What have you read of the fumetti form? Any recommendations?