Images © DC Comics, Inc.
I’m delighted to have received my copy of this from Bob Chapman at Graphitti Designs. It’s so cool to revisit the pages I lettered for BATMAN 515-525 at original art size, and most scanned from that art, so it’s just like having the pages in hand, with every tiny detail (and error) perfectly reproduced. This is the format that Scott Dunbier pioneered at IDW with his Artist Editions, but Chapman has produced an excellent companion in this book, and I hope many more. The art by Kelley Jones and John Beatty is so cool, much more interesting to look at in black and white than a lot of comics art, and where originals couldn’t be found, Gregory Wright’s original color guides are scanned instead, also fun to see.
If you’re at all interested in seeing my hand lettering work at its prime, this book is full of it, from story titles and credits, to regular dialogue balloons and captions…
…and lots of sound effects and display lettering of all kinds. There are a few bits done on computer, but most of it is pen and ink. The book is not cheap at $125, but I feel it’s a great package and well worth it. Perhaps your library might be persuaded to order it for you if you can’t buy it yourself, hope so.
Images © DC Comics, Inc.
I love looking at original comics art, but I have yet to buy one of IDW’s wonderful Artist’s Editions that reproduce large quantities of such art at original size. This one arrived today from IDW, and I’m not sure why, though I am listed under “special thanks” inside. Maybe either editor Scott Dunbier or artist Walt Simonson will remind me if I did something helpful for this book, I know I didn’t letter any of the contents.
In addition to the terrific Manhunter series that ran in DETECTIVE COMICS in the 1970s, this book has an almost as lengthy section of other early Walt Simonson work including a Batman story, Dr. Fate from FIRST ISSUE SPECIAL #9, three wonderful Captain Fear pirate stories that ran in UNKNOWN SOLDIER and two issues of METAL MEN. Not everything is shot from original art, but much of it is, and I love seeing all the production notes, lettering corrections, pasted-in art fixes, and everything that brings the creation of the work to life, and of course the stories are great reading.
If you haven’t seen any of these Artist’s Editions, you should try to. They’re fabulous in every way.
Images © Marvel.
YEESH! This fershlugginer book is gigantic, and it comes in a cardboard carrying case with built in plastic handle that’s even bigger! The book is 12 by 16 inches, and 3 inches thick. I’m not sure how I’m going to read it, it weighs over 14 pounds. In small amounts, I imagine! I was asked to submit a design for the cover titles, but Taschen went with something else, so my only involvement is a few small year titles on the included but separate Marvel timeline:
This one folds out five times to 55 inches wide! Cat for scale. I appreciate Taschen sending it to me, but I have no idea where I will have room to put it! A quick look through the book reveals all kinds of over-the-top design extras like foil printing and heavy cardstock on some pages. Who knew, when I was buying those cheap, poorly printed comics in the early 1960s it would come to this? Not me, that’s for sure!
Image © estates of Joe Simon and Jack Kirby.
I had it in my hands at the New York Comicon, now I have one to read and enjoy. I did the title lettering, so editor Charles Kochman was kind enough to send it to me. A few hundred pages of stories scanned from the original art, with commentary by Mark Evanier? Can’t wait. The pages are 9 by 12 inches, and I like the fact that they used the actual paper and ink colors rather than trying to make it look more like printed comics. Well done.
Image © Bill Willingham and DC Comics.
I don’t usually do two of these so close together, but I was so happy to see this book I couldn’t resist. First, I was blown away by the wraparound cover by Daniel Dos Santos, which looks even better without any type on the actual cover boards. Second, the paper and printing on these is SO much better than both the original comics and the regular trade paperback collections. Wonderful to finally see our work reproduced this well. Finally, the collection of issues 70-82 puts some amazingly varied stories in one volume, from epic battles and thrilling action to moving tragedy and heartbreak. From clever comedy to chilling horror. From spy thrillers to intimate character work. From honest heroism to the worst villainy. Fables, and especially this collection, has it all. Look for it at a shop near you.