"Art of Home" Is A Solid, if Uninspiring Art Book




I've been listening to a lot of podcasts lately, as I mentioned last month. That particular column didn't cover all of the different shows I've been sampling, though, and I also think some shows deserve special mentions for being awesome in a particular week. The goal is to carve out a spot in Pipeline as often as possible to mention some of those shows, to give you more cool comics and animation talk to fill your ears with.

  • Word Balloon featured an interview with Matt Brady last week. Yes, the guy from Newsarama who ran screaming from comics and is now carving out a niche for himself as a writer. John Siuntres' interview covers the current comics, but I was more fascinated with the meta-commentary on running a comics website and all the trials and tribulations he had at Newsarama, particularly in its latter years. In my last two or three years of going to San Diego Comic Con, having a Sunday night dinner on the way to the airport with Matt was a tradition. One of those years, I also ran into John Siuntres at the airport after that dinner and hung out for a while with him there, too, so it all comes full circle.

    I'm biased, obviously, because I'm a part of the "on-line comics journalism landscape," but this was my podcast of the week.

  • The Panels and Pizza podcast -- so named because they conduct their interviews at pizza joints -- hosted Otis Frampton, of "Oddly Normal" and ABCDEFGeek fame. The more creators you listen talk about comics, the more points of view you see. I am glad that we're kind of passed the idea that the only worthy comics creator is a comics-only creator who fantasizes about drawing Spider-Man one day and will only draw comics until the day he dies. Particularly given the state of the industry, it's wise to be able to adapt to other industries and keep an open mind. Frampton works in web videos and has no interest in doing a Big Two title. He'd be happy to work on an "Oddly Normal" television series, which takes nothing away from the charm of the comics series.

    It's an 80 minute interview, give or take, slightly rambling, but still filled with stuff of industry and geeky interest. Glad I gave it a shot. There is a part of me that wonders about the logistics of recording podcasts in random pizza places. That's not my problem, though, thank goodness.


  • We live in a world where the Oscar for Best Picture went to a superhero movie, and the Best Animated Film is based on a Marvel comic from the 90s. We live in glorious heady days, comic fans. (This doesn't excuse "Guardians of the Galaxy"'s one loss, but let's not be bitter right now.)
  • I like this take on Hollywood's self-loathing when it comes to superhero films, which comes with a great quote from James Gunn.
  • Jim Zub[kavich] has updated his bar charts to show relative sales and profitability between "Skullkickers" and "Wayward." It's good news for him, but impressive news for Image Comics, as a whole, and the state of independent comics creators.
  • Christie's is hosting a European comic art auction in March. The catalog is now up as a PDF. It's 430+ pages worth of beautiful. And, yes, there's a Smurfs page in there from Peyo. Check out page 123. It's priced shockingly low at 22,000 - 25,000 Euro.
  • The director of the upcoming Smurfs movie has an interesting history, which he lays out in this video as part of the Smurfs movie production blog. Any friend of Chuck Jones is someone whose work I'll look at.
  • This travelogue about Angouleme by the directors of the "Stripped" movie is an awesome slideshow. It's just two buddies telling you about their vacation and showing their pictures, but they had a really cool vacation that was actually interesting!
  • You know how comic artists will take pictures of themselves as photo reference for a page they're working on? Animators do it, too. Cassidy Curtis practically raises it to an art form. That two minute video shows his before and after work. Fun stuff.
  • Jake Parker takes you to his local printer, where he prints his sketchbooks. If you want to see the different vats of inks and how they create the pages of a book, this is a fun (and short) video.
  • Matthew Dow Smith talks about his process of changing from pen-and-ink to digital comics production, complete with art samples. Like it or not, this is a process lots of your favorite artists will be going through in the years ahead.
  • Will Sliney shows you how to draw Spider-Man's costume's webbing.
  • Chris Samnee offers some tips for drawing crowds. And you know what? The same guidelines would apply to drawing anything in nature, too, like a forest or a field of flowers or a leaf-laden rock-strewn nature trail: use repetition, a variety of shapes, natural groupings, and negative space. Art is fun!
  • Shawn Martinbrough lists his favorite "Thief of Thieves" covers, with process sketches, black and whites, trade dress-less images, and more. The latest issue of "Thief of Thieves" is a very strong one, with a big fat twist to send the series off in a new direction that I hope they stick to for a while. Andy Diggle and Martinbrough are doing great work on the series, which I sometimes worry might be getting overlooked because (A) Robert Kirkman doesn't have a writing credit on it anymore and (B) it's past its sixth issue, so fewer people pay attention to it. UGH.
  • Next week: We'll get back to the epic re-read of "All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder," I promise. It's the Joker issue coming up, so it should be fun.

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