Sunday, November 11, 2007

Is It Possible for a Head to Tread Water?

Because mine isn't exactly swimming, but it's not on solid ground, either...

Been feeling sick most of the week. Back of the throat's sore, I've got that "axe in my face" feeling that characterized the sinus infection a few months back, and my body's achy.

I could deal with all of that--it's almost par for the course, for me in an Edmonton November. So this afternoon I went to Happy Harbor Volume 3 to do a little painting. And by little I mean LITTLE. Rolled primer on most of the upstairs, started cutting and that's around the time the room started to shrink and I almost fell down. Fortunately, there was a door frame handy to prevent me from doing an out of control face plant, but still...

After driving about halfway home, I realized what my problem was with the traffic--my eyes kept wanting to go out of focus and see double. It's a weird experience, consciously forcing your eyes to focus every few seconds. And distracting. I think I might've technically driven better if I'd just let the focus go, picked the version of traffic that looked most welcoming, and ran with it.



Almost got MERLYN COMPANY figured out. Started scripting a few days ago, and the holes left in the plotting I'd done started filling themselves. I love it when that happens. Still one major story element that needs to be worked out, but it's started, now.

Nick Johnson's gotten the first two pages of art for THE HOLIDAY MEN done done done, and they are gorgeous. Tiina's taking a shot at lettering, to hopefully help Nick pick up speed. Things aren't coming together as fast as anyone had hoped, but when they do fall into place I think we're going to have something special. I can't wait for the press release to go out--it's the kind of thing I've tried to write repeatedly over the years and had someone above me balk and go, No, let's do something that doesn't make a mockery of the idea of press releases. But nobody's going to stop this one from going out. Whether it gets picked up remains to be seen...


Fantagraphics founder Gary Groth called COWBOYS & ALIENS "undistinguished pap." For some reason, this has actually improved my mood.

Casting a wider net, Toronto comic shop The Beguiling's Chris Butcher says he has yet to see a Platinum project that didn't feel like a pitch. It's not likely he's going to come across many that don't any time soon--high-concept material suitable for exploitation in other media is pretty much the model Platinum's built on, after all. Off the top of my head, I'd say the Platinum projects that at least SEEM most driven by the creators executing them are HERO BY NIGHT (the writer/artist of which was given extraordinary creative latitude by Platinum's standards of the time) and WEIRD ADVENTURES IN UNEMPLOYMENT. That this can be said of the last example is more than a little ironic, as it's actually being done by someone other than the strip's originator. But it's also one that at least feels as though the creator's being left more or less to his own devices, and is producing an idiosyncratic webcomic as a result.

That isn't to say the webcomic is better than the original version--I don't think it is. But, as the one-time editor of that original version and staunch supporter of the artist who drew it, John Keane, I'm obviously more than a little biased.

Good night (hopefully.)


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