Journalista for Feb. 1, 2010: Slips inside of Joyce easily

Posted by on February 1st, 2010 at 10:32 AM




“I just drew a really cool dinosaur. How’s that for my first tweet?”


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Recently posted to our homepage:

  • Matthias Wivel interviews the French cartooning team Florent Ruppert and Jérôme Mulot, and provides coverage from this last weekend’s Angoulême Comics Festival (Friday, Saturday).

  • R. Fiore charts the space between “realistic” and “cartoony” drawing.

  • Shaenon Garrity marvels at the contradictions of Dave Sim’s Glamourpuss.

  • Rob Clough reviews Greg Houston’s Vatican Hustle, and the second volume of the Seth-edited John Stanley Library: Nancy.

  • Rich Kreiner reviews Grant Morrison and Cameron Stewart’s Seaguy: Slaves of Mickey Eye.

  • Tom Crippen on Adam Warren’s Empowered: The Wench with the Million Sighs.

  • Not comics: Kent Worcester interviews Hippo in a Tutu: Dancing in Disney Animation author Mindy Aloff.

  • As always, R.C. Harvey covers the funny pages (one, two).

  • GutterGeek‘s Jared Gardner presents several generous sequences from Ed Wheelan’s classic comic strip, Minute Movies.

  • Over at The Hooded Utilitarian, Adam Stephanides takes a further look at the CLAMP series xxxHOLiC.

(Above: 1921 panel from Ed Whelan’s Minute Movies.)

And in the news…


Above the Fold


Life in interesting times

  • An argument over e-book pricing between and Macmillan erupted into public view over the weekend, as the online retailer de-listed thousands pf the publishing conglomerate’s titles — including the First Second Books line — in an attempt to voice its “strong disagreement” over Macmillan’s planned pricing regime for digital texts. Amazon relented on Sunday, returning the listings in question to the site. Jeremy Kirk has a good, link-filled summary of the story, while Charles Stross, John Scalzi and Andrew Wheeler (one, two) have commentary.

    And speaking of First Second, can I just point out that as promotional catch-phrases go, “Slips inside of Joyce easily” could probably do with a bit of work? (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)


  • Anime News Network reports:

    The Oricon survey firm revealed in a January 29 publishing market report that 270.5 billion yen (about US$2.983 billion) was spent [in Japan] on 5.02431 billion manga volumes in 2009. The company tracked sales from December 29, 2008 to December 27, 2009.


  • Minnesota cartoonist Craig Livingstone is running for the U.S. Senate, on the Republican ticket.

  • Kiel Phegley discusses the business of digital comics with IDW Publishing e-publishing director Jeff Webber, why Sony has done a better job with such things for its PSP handheld gaming system than has Apple with its iPhone, and how this has affected sales:

    “What’s amazing here is that it’s not strictly superhero-based. We’ve got a nice showing there, and we’re finding that on that platform, people are very receptive to creator-based content. I wouldn’t say it’s at the exclusion of others — Transformers is still very popular on the PSP — but what’s really interesting is that we’re finally able to break out some content that looks really nice in digital but that people haven’t found.”


  • Christopher Butcher and Kevin Melrose won’t let Bluewater Productions and their shitty creator deals go.

  • Rich Johnston explains how comics made the Indian village of Jaduguda safe from uranium dust.

  • For today’s iPad commentary, we turn to Stephen Fry, Lori Henderson, Michael Buntag and Hervé St-Louis. Laura Hudson has further creator reactions and Brigid Alverson has further linkage, while Glenn Hauman misses the point:

    Or put it this way: If you normally buy an average of $30 of comics a week at a store, and you replace half of them with digital versions of the same books that cost 25% of their paper counterparts, you’re going to save over $560 in a year. That’s the price of a low-end iPad, plus tax and shipping.

    Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter whether or not the costs make the device appeal to comics fans. It has to be cheap enough to appeal to the general public, building a large enough pool of potential customers to once again make selling comics to a mass audience feasible — otherwise you’re just trading one limited, stagnant marketplace for another, selling primarily to a fraction of the same customer base that you already had. Which is what I think will happen with the iPad as presently designed and marketed, for reasons already outlined.

    Will Apple eventually lower the price? Sure, if the potential for marketplace growth proves big enough. But for that to be the case, there’ll need to be a number of competitors offering better deals than what Apple currently gives, and there’s a damned good chance that many of them would be running Google Android/Chrome in one form or another. Here’s the thing about Google’s strategy: Because it’s both open source and backed by one of the largest tech corporations on Earth, they can make a strong appeal to manufacturers, not only for their operating system’s lack of licensing costs but also because it comes with an already-functioning apps store that sells across multiple hardware platforms, guaranteeing (to the extent that anyone can) a thriving online marketplace for one’s customers. This in turn offers creators and publishers a potential for mass-market ubiquity that Apple will never, ever be able to match.

    If you’re hoping to “save comics” with a digital marketplace, Glenn, you’re almost certainly betting on the wrong horse…

    (Above: recent sequence from Player vs. Player, ©2010 Scott Kurtz.)


  • This just in: Gail Simone hates women.





  • Erica Hendry on Darwyn Cooke

    The fan-favorite cartoonist discusses his adaptation of Donald Westlake’s Parker: The Hunter.

    (Link via Mike Rhode.)







  • Shaenon Garrity on Ludwig II Vol. 1-2

    “I’m sitting here trying to figure out how many stars I can get away with awarding Ludwig II. It’s a big dopey ridiculous manga. It’s outrageously melodramatic. The characters are larger-than-life and often nonsensical. The attempts to weave real history and politics into the soap-opera romance frequently come off as silly. The art is uneven. And, as with most yaoi, the plot and characters are mostly just stepping stones to the real point of the comic: naked men making out.”

    (Above: sequence from the first volume, ©2009 You Higuri.)


  • Jonathan Last on Footnotes in Gaza

    “As an artistic matter, it’s a tour de force on every page. But as an exercise in historical narrative, it’s a staggering, and in many ways surprising, work.”







  • James Sturm: Clicking

    “To combine photographs and text and have them read as a fluid language is a very difficult task. A single photo stops you in your tracks. A still image is pulled from the stream of time (evocative in and of itself) and invites the viewer to linger and seek connections in the image’s details. An ominous sky, an ill-fitting suit, and calloused hands reveals character or become representational of some larger truth.”


  • Rodney Schroeter: Steve Ditko’s battle of ideas

    “Whether you think Ditko’s work went into decline, or took a turn upward, will depend on your values — what ideas and things you think are important.”

    (Link via Steven Thompson.)





Business and Craft


  • Brandon Selfert: Why you need an agreement with your collaborators

    “According to US copyright law, when you collaborate with other people to create a joint work — a work where everyones’ contributions are meant to be merged together into a single whole, like a comic, and where everyone contributed more than a “de minimus input” (more than a word or a line, in the case of writing) — each of the collaborators has equal rights in it, unless you come to a written agreement otherwise.”

    (Link via Xaviar Xerexes.)


  • Jeet Heer: Unintentional connections?

    “Most good cartoonists care about not just what’s inside a panel but how panels relate to each other, not to mention the composition of the whole page.”


Comics and Art


  • Illustration blog: Schiani Ledo

    It’s made of candy, basically.

    (Above: “Astranaut,” ©2009 Schiani Ledo.)


  • David Apatoff: William Cotton

    “In the 1930s, Cotton turned from gallery painting to illustration and began doing caricatures of Broadway stars, writers and politicians for Vanity Fair and the New Yorker. For the first time, Cotton was forced to accept the subjects that editors assigned to him. He was forced to work on deadline. He no longer had the luxury of unlimited space to paint fancy lace collars and detailed fabric. Instead, he was forced to cut to the essentials, and simplify his images for reproduction on a small magazine page. The result was a long series of really neat, beautifully colored caricatures.”







  • YouTube: Mark Bodé

    The cartoonist discusses his work, and the legacy of his underground-cartoonist father.

    (Above: screenshot from the video. Link via Mike Lynch.)


Comics Culture


  • Tom Spurgeon: Angoulême 2010 prize winners

    Baru won the Grand Prix; full list at the link. Here’s Matthias Wivel with a wrap-up.


  • Your Not-Comics Link of the Day:

    Michael Totten speaks with The Strong Horse author Lee Smith about Mid-Eastern politics and Why They Hate Us.


  • Your Scans_Daily Link of the Day:

    Wally Wood parodies Tennessee Williams.

    (Above: panel from “Sin-Doll Ella,” in Mad Magazine #35, ©1957 E.C. Publications.)


Events Calendar returns tomorrow.


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