Tuesday, 5 March 2019

Plan of Action (Comics)


How have you been?

I have a lot of ideas, some of them funny, and the frequent urge to switch to the newest. The latest idea must surely be the best, and the previous was probably, actually, crap. I don't think this is an uncommon impulse with creativity, but it tends to not get a lot done. The skill, I suspect, is in disciplining oneself to persevere with a project through self-doubt and periods when you lose engagement. Therefore, I have an announcement: I'm going to commit.

I'm going to make a comic. It's going to contain two short hardboiled detective stories, involving anthropomorphic fruit and veg.

I did warn you the ideas are funny.

I scripted the two stories a while ago and wrote about how much I was enjoying the process. I recently reread them and they're good. One needs a little reworking, the other polishing, but I think they have merit. I'm happy to move on to the stage of character design/environment research and layouts. I think it will be interesting to blog about my progress/process as well, as a way of keeping me engaged with what I'm working on and getting a different perspective on it, and hopefully for anyone outside interested in the particulars of comics creation. Expect a post soon on the background for the story.

I'll still be regularly turning out cartoon works Multum in Parvo and The Box, weekly and daily respectively, because I enjoy jokes like this:

I'll end on another reading segment. Where have you been lately? For me, it's Ancient Gaul, having been working my way through all the Asterix albums in sequence. I've just reread Asterix and the Actress (Asterix et Latraviata) for the first time in what must be years.

You know, I really do have a soft spot for the solo Uderzo albums; on the whole they're simpler conceptually and plot-wise than those written by Goscinny, but they race along with the flow of a great sequential storyteller and from gag to gag with the execution of a great cartoonist. I'm sure the translation team of Bell and Hockridge do a lot to smooth out the punning for the English translation too. Conceptually the Uderzo books tend to bend the fictional set-up out of shape to greater or lesser extents (here the shark-jump happens long before Asterix rides a dolphin) and can suffer from naff plot resolutions, but they retain the rich depth of character established over decades. Asterix and the Actress is no exception there, and has lost none of its sense of fun with inspired comic nonsense such as this:

Yes, I still love Asterix.

See you next time.

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