Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Published by Liverpool University Press
 If there is an unholy trinity in the world of comics it must be the three caballeros Alan Moore, Dave Gibbons and John Higgins, whose collaborations are considered amongst the very best work in the medium. Think Batman: The Killing Joke, Watchmen. Judge Dredd. Hellblazer and Razorjack.                                                             
 This summer it is Higgins that takes his turn in the main spotlight with an exhibition of his lifetime work in Liverpool until October coinciding with the publication of a hefty 278pp large-format landscape book.

Packed with artwork, John H.'s narrative comes complete with professional tradecraft info of a high order, survival tips gained from hard-won experience and technical tips to many of his own techniques. A prolific comic illustrator in his own right, John has ranged across the genres and styles, often pushing the boundaries of taste, experimenting with pen, paint and technology.

The section I found most absorbing was his lengthy account of being the colourist on Watchmen and the processes that had to be gone through in the pre-digital age. His colour use, though limited by the technology of the time, was inventive and striking, adding emotion, altering moods. All done by hand.

Dave Gibbon's pencil work and John H's colourisation

Ashton Street, Victoria Gallery & Museum, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, Merseyside, L69 3DR Tel: 0151 794 2348


Always good to get new titles from Self Made Hero and to be introduced to  new work. 

'Outburst'  is a debut graphic novel by an award-winning animator Pieter Coudyzer. 

There are several of his short films on YouTube and a whole portfolio of his eerie drawings on the artist's own website. 

However for this work he has adopted a much more in-your-face style which suits the dark nature of the story, involving unsettling transformations, a sad and rejected child who mutates and lots of ants and leaves. 

Kafkaesque and Lynchian, its excruciating, uncomfortable but weirdly great

I am in awe of Chris W. Kim and his drawing skills. This may also be his debut graphic novel but if you check out his excellent website, there's a whole section of what he calls 'Sequentials' up to 30 or so pages long, which demonstrate

 his flowing storytelling style and his remarkable visual imagination.'Herman By Trade', as it turns out, also has transformation at its heart.A modest street-cleaner happens to be a virtuoso chameleon and catches the eye of a female cult film director called Mio for her next epic movie. All does not go exactly according to plan. Superior piece of work which pays repeated study.

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