Author Archives: Todd

And Then I Read: AUTUMNLANDS 7

Autumn7

Image © Busiek & Dewey.

A new story arc begins with the surviving magicians and townsfolk from the fallen sky-city now apparently on a smaller sky-craft (sky village?), with their leaders still squabbling and fighting for control of their now limited power. Their savior, the soldier they conjured from the distant past, is not among them. Learoyd and his young friend Dusty have been left behind for dead at the scene of the battle with the bison-men. Learoyd nearly is dead until Dusty pulls him from the river. The rest of the issue is largely a dialogue between the two of them that covers lots of interesting ground: the history of this world, its magic, Learoyd’s past, their enemies, and what they might need to do next. I think this may be my favorite issue so far.

Recommended.

Pre-Raphaelites at the Delaware Art Museum

MorrisBookCoverImages from the Delaware Art Museum collection.

The Pre-Raphaelite collection at the museum is the best I’ve seen outside England, and has the largest number of paintings by Dante Gabriel Rosetti, one of the founders of the movement. The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, as they called themselves, flourished in the second half of England’s 19th Century into the early 20th Century, and their name comes from the idea that they wanted to look back to Medieval times for artistic inspiration, before the Renaissance artists epitomized by Raphael. They also drew inspiration from natural forms. A good example is this book cover design in pen and ink by William Morris, my favorite creator of the group. It’s the only piece they have by him, but it’s a gem because it shows Morris’s process in the notes on the right. Continue reading

More American Illustrators at the Delaware Art Museum

LeyendeckerCountryGentlemanImages from the collection of the Delaware Art Museum.

After enjoying the Howard Pyle galleries, Ellen and I continued to the American Illustration galleries. The museum seems to have a large collection in this area, which is only fitting since many of the top American Illustrators studied in Wilmington, Delaware, the home of Howard Pyle’s illustration school. I don’t know that Frank Leyendecker was one of them, but this is a charming cover for “The Country Gentleman” magazine from 1918 of a soldier writing home and the spirit of his mother embracing him. Continue reading

Howard Pyle at the Delaware Art Museum

PyleAttackOnAGalleonImages from the Delaware Art Museum collections.

For my birthday this year, Ellen and I went to the Delaware Art Museum in Wilmington, Delaware and enjoyed an impressive collection of art that’s right in my centers of interest. I have lots of pictures, so I’m going to spread them over three posts, beginning with the work of Howard Pyle (1853-1911).

Pyle was a native of Wilmington with a long career as a painter, magazine illustrator, author and teacher. The museum has a large and excellent display of his illustrations and paintings, several with a pirate theme, as above attack on a spanish galleon. Continue reading

And Then I Read: SURVIVORS’ CLUB 4

SC4Image © Beukes, Halvorsen and Kelly.

The story lines of the first three issues are set aside to allow the exploration of the very odd Muskagee House, which has been talked about earlier as both an actual haunted house and the setting of a horror film series. We explore the actual house (I think) in the company of one of its ghosts, and meet several others, as well as the husband and wife team of religious ghost-busters who are the living inhabitants. It’s a trippy tale that makes it hard to tell what’s supposed to be real and what’s coming from the imagination of the ghosts, or even the horror films. It has some chilling moments, but in all the tone did not convince me or draw me in. Rather it kept me puzzled and unsure what to think about the purpose of this diversion. There have been some creepy haunted houses in comics, but this does not come across to me as one of them when all is said and done, and it raised more questions than it answered.

Mildly recommended.