Posts tagged books

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When I was a kid I was a big library nerd, and I exhausted my local library’s collection of books about cartooning and comics. I grew up with a romantic idea of cartooning history, fuelled by musty old books and black and white photos. The world of the cartoonist was magical and mysterious, and there was nothing I wanted more than to be a part of it.
Fast forward a few years, and I’ve managed to turn my childhood daydreams of cartooning into a career. But the realities of adulthood have a tendency to strip away the magic of childhood sometimes.
The Internet makes it all too easy to track down information on obscure cartoonists. Publishers like Drawn & Quarterly and Fantagraphics continue to churn out collections reprinting old comic books and strips. The treasure hunt is mostly gone. I’ve even joined organizations like the National Cartoonists Society, which I am honoured to be a part of, but which has also had the unexpected side effect of destroying the mystique that the NCS once held when I was a kid. I suppose it’s that old Groucho line about never wanting to be in a club that would have you as a member.
So I unabashedly love Seth’s new book, The Great Northern Brotherhood of Canadian Cartoonists. It’s a prequel of sorts to Wimbledon Green, and sets the scene and describes the world in which Seth’s made-up history of Canadian cartooning and comics takes place.
It’s odd to feel nostalgic for something that doesn’t exist, but reading The G.N.B. Double C was like taking a trip back in time, and reliving those childhood moments of discovering a secret world of cartooning with a rich, mysterious history.
We get a tour of the GNBCC’s social headquarters, learn about the club’s distinguished members, and discover their creations in the building’s magnificent (and woefully fictional) gallery and library.
The book does feature some real-life Canadian cartooning icons like Doug Wright and Jim Simpkins, but for the most part is complete fantasy — giving me, as a reader and cartoonist, the chance to once again blissfully daydream about a history and a world of cartooning I might one day be a part of.

When I was a kid I was a big library nerd, and I exhausted my local library’s collection of books about cartooning and comics. I grew up with a romantic idea of cartooning history, fuelled by musty old books and black and white photos. The world of the cartoonist was magical and mysterious, and there was nothing I wanted more than to be a part of it.

Fast forward a few years, and I’ve managed to turn my childhood daydreams of cartooning into a career. But the realities of adulthood have a tendency to strip away the magic of childhood sometimes.

The Internet makes it all too easy to track down information on obscure cartoonists. Publishers like Drawn & Quarterly and Fantagraphics continue to churn out collections reprinting old comic books and strips. The treasure hunt is mostly gone. I’ve even joined organizations like the National Cartoonists Society, which I am honoured to be a part of, but which has also had the unexpected side effect of destroying the mystique that the NCS once held when I was a kid. I suppose it’s that old Groucho line about never wanting to be in a club that would have you as a member.

So I unabashedly love Seth’s new book, The Great Northern Brotherhood of Canadian Cartoonists. It’s a prequel of sorts to Wimbledon Green, and sets the scene and describes the world in which Seth’s made-up history of Canadian cartooning and comics takes place.

It’s odd to feel nostalgic for something that doesn’t exist, but reading The G.N.B. Double C was like taking a trip back in time, and reliving those childhood moments of discovering a secret world of cartooning with a rich, mysterious history.

We get a tour of the GNBCC’s social headquarters, learn about the club’s distinguished members, and discover their creations in the building’s magnificent (and woefully fictional) gallery and library.

The book does feature some real-life Canadian cartooning icons like Doug Wright and Jim Simpkins, but for the most part is complete fantasy — giving me, as a reader and cartoonist, the chance to once again blissfully daydream about a history and a world of cartooning I might one day be a part of.

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Preach it!

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And speaking of great children’s books, everything you have read or heard about Jon Klassen’s I Want My Hat Back is true.
The book is funny, gorgeous, and perfect — an instant classic if ever there was one. Beautiful minimalist art and smart, funny writing.

And speaking of great children’s books, everything you have read or heard about Jon Klassen’s I Want My Hat Back is true.

The book is funny, gorgeous, and perfect — an instant classic if ever there was one. Beautiful minimalist art and smart, funny writing.

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When I was a kid, one of my favourite books was Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go — page after page of every imaginable cartoon automobile.
Today, one of my favourite children’s illustrators is Brian Biggs, and his new book Everything Goes On Land is a spiritual successor to Scarry’s book.
Mr. Biggs is so deft at drawing cars — each one with its own personality — that it’s his work I visit when I have trouble drawing cars myself. Modern cars are particularly tricky to get just right, with their weird, slick shapes. In Everything Goes, Biggs’s chunky colourful cars and trucks have a distinct old-fashionedness to them, which only adds to the charm.
And just like Richard Scarry’s book had the fun game of trying to find the hidden Goldbug on each page, so too does this book — on each page there’s a bird wearing a hat, and throughout the book the numbers 1 to 100 are hidden somewhere in the illustrations, adding a Where’s Waldo element.
So great! And there’s an Everything Goes in the Air, and an Everything Goes By Sea in the works.
Be sure, too, to visit Brian’s blog — especially under the Everything Goes category, for all sorts of process stuff and preliminary sketches. It’s where I found this trailer, too:

When I was a kid, one of my favourite books was Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go — page after page of every imaginable cartoon automobile.

Today, one of my favourite children’s illustrators is Brian Biggs, and his new book Everything Goes On Land is a spiritual successor to Scarry’s book.

Mr. Biggs is so deft at drawing cars — each one with its own personality — that it’s his work I visit when I have trouble drawing cars myself. Modern cars are particularly tricky to get just right, with their weird, slick shapes. In Everything Goes, Biggs’s chunky colourful cars and trucks have a distinct old-fashionedness to them, which only adds to the charm.

And just like Richard Scarry’s book had the fun game of trying to find the hidden Goldbug on each page, so too does this book — on each page there’s a bird wearing a hat, and throughout the book the numbers 1 to 100 are hidden somewhere in the illustrations, adding a Where’s Waldo element.

So great! And there’s an Everything Goes in the Air, and an Everything Goes By Sea in the works.

Be sure, too, to visit Brian’s blog — especially under the Everything Goes category, for all sorts of process stuff and preliminary sketches. It’s where I found this trailer, too:

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Beautiful work by Rob Ryan.

(via Rob Ryan! « PRINTERESTING)

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I’ll take a wild guess and say that because you’re reading this on a comics & illustration blog, you’re already familiar with Kate Beaton’s comics. I’ll also guess, since it’s been reviewed everywhere from NPR to Time Magazine that you also already know about her new book with Drawn & Quarterly, on sale today.
I’ll refrain from reviewing the book itself, which is a nice, big, beautiful, hilarious thing because there’s not much I can say that Dustin Harbin didn’t already put so perfectly in his review.
But I did want to draw attention to the book because I know that readers of this site are cartoonists themselves, both professional and aspiring.  Kate’s book, which topped the comics and graphic novel sales chart on Amazon well before it was even released, is a notable Internet success story, and it’s worth trying to steal her secrets.
Okay, yes, talent. Talent aside — and she has it in boatloads — I think Kate’s secret is in how thoughtful a cartoonist she is. It’s a thoughtfulness that informs her work, and gives her the observational skills that allows her to capture the expressions, emotions, body language, and speech patterns of real people that makes her comics about historical and literary characters so funny.
But if you know Kate, have seen her speak, or follow her on Twitter, you’ll know it’s her thoughtfulness that also gives her autobiographical comics such heart, her thoughtfulness that gives her opinions on comics, humour, art, and culture such weight, and her thoughtfulness that makes her fans love her:

Let’s all buy her book.
EDIT: Here’s our first post about Kate from 2007.

I’ll take a wild guess and say that because you’re reading this on a comics & illustration blog, you’re already familiar with Kate Beaton’s comics. I’ll also guess, since it’s been reviewed everywhere from NPR to Time Magazine that you also already know about her new book with Drawn & Quarterly, on sale today.

I’ll refrain from reviewing the book itself, which is a nice, big, beautiful, hilarious thing because there’s not much I can say that Dustin Harbin didn’t already put so perfectly in his review.

But I did want to draw attention to the book because I know that readers of this site are cartoonists themselves, both professional and aspiring.  Kate’s book, which topped the comics and graphic novel sales chart on Amazon well before it was even released, is a notable Internet success story, and it’s worth trying to steal her secrets.

Okay, yes, talent. Talent aside — and she has it in boatloads — I think Kate’s secret is in how thoughtful a cartoonist she is. It’s a thoughtfulness that informs her work, and gives her the observational skills that allows her to capture the expressions, emotions, body language, and speech patterns of real people that makes her comics about historical and literary characters so funny.

But if you know Kate, have seen her speak, or follow her on Twitter, you’ll know it’s her thoughtfulness that also gives her autobiographical comics such heart, her thoughtfulness that gives her opinions on comics, humour, art, and culture such weight, and her thoughtfulness that makes her fans love her:

Let’s all buy her book.

EDIT: Here’s our first post about Kate from 2007.

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I just finished illustration a children’s book full of dozens of spaceships, and I wish I had this book to use as a resource when I was doing my initial concept work.

Hardware: The Definitive SF Works of Chris Foss collects the art that originally graced the covers of paperback scifi books from the 70s and 80s. Foss’s designs are both strangely organic and severely industrial.

The book features forewords from Moebius and Alejandro Jodorowsky whose collaboration on the comic book The Incal directly influenced the film The Fifth Element.

I’m keeping this on my reference shelf for the next time I need to draw dozens of spaceships.

Images © Chris Foss, courtesy ChrisFossArt.com

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theoinglis:

Im always on the look out for second hand books, so yesterday when I walked past a church with a sign outside saying ‘book fare’ I couldn’t resist!

Got this rather nice book; True to Type by Denys Parsons for £2. It was published in 1955. The yellow of the cover and its illustration caught my eye, the drawings in the book are by Haro. Can’t find anything online about Haro, which is a shame as the illustrations in this are really lovely and simple. Plus there are lots of them, way more than other old illustrated books I’ve almost bought before.

I love the mid-century modern furniture in the 3rd picture, and the policeman in the 4th. But they are all great!

In a strange coincidence I saw the exact same book minus the dust jacket for sale at the flea market today for the same price!

The rest of the illustrations and some more photos are on my flickr here

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(via Plasticine Tatooine – Stories from the Star Wars second string by Elliott Quince)
Star Wars characters sculpted out of Plasticine? If you’re anything like me, you may find it difficult to resist the mere £4.95 it takes to own this great-looking little book.

(via Plasticine Tatooine – Stories from the Star Wars second string by Elliott Quince)

Star Wars characters sculpted out of Plasticine? If you’re anything like me, you may find it difficult to resist the mere £4.95 it takes to own this great-looking little book.

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The Books of Craig Yoe

I’ve been in a real vintage comics fix lately. I’ve been revisiting some overlooked gems from my library, and one can’t do much better than the books of Craig Yoe for vintage comics.

The Golden Collection of Klassic Krazy Kool Kids Komics may be guilty of alliteration crimes, but it’s a treasure trove of weird, rare kids’ comics. It makes a pretty decent companion book to Dan Nadel’s Art Out of Time and Art in Time books of obscure comics, but with a focus on children’s material.

There are a few out-of-place duds in the book. A Steve Ditko-penciled comic for Big Boy restaurants, for example, is an interesting oddity, but doesn’t seem at home among the pulpy dot-patterned works of cartooning greats like Syd Hoff, Dr. Suess, Walt Kelly, Harvey Kurtzman, John Stanley, and Carl Barks.

The book that really gets me, though, is Craig’s tribute to Dick Briefer’s Frankenstein.

I didn’t know about Briefer’s work until I read about it here on Drawn back when the monster-loving Jay Stephens wrote about him.

The book covers two different eras of Briefer’s Frankenstein stories, brilliantly reflected in the book’s cover design — a frightening, grotesque version of the famous Monster with die-cut eyes graces the cover, which opens to reveal a similarly-grotesque but more comical, goofy version of the character — the effects of censorship on horror comics in the mid 1950s.

Finally, while I don’t think 3D does much to enhance the movie-going experience, I have always had a soft spot for 3D comics since I was a kid. So I’m looking forward to Craig’s latest book, Amazing 3D Comics.

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The Hidden People is a stunning collection of new drawings by Cory Godbey. I immediately think of my childhood copy of Brian Froud’s The World of the Dark Crystal, and I anticipate poring over the pages of Godbey’s book in much the same way - cribbing shapes and textures and lines for my own drawings.

After you’re done scooping your jaw off the floor, go ahead and ogle some of the other gorgeous drawings and animations he’s made. Lordy, that’s good stuff.

(Source: vimeo.com)

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EVERYTHING GOES: ON LAND by Brian Biggs (by HarperKids)

I love Brian Biggs’s art and I love big find-em books like Where’s Waldo, so you can bet I’m looking forward to Everything Goes: On Land, and its eventual sequels.

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I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen - Book Trailer (by CandlewickPress)

I cannot wait for this book — Jon Klassen’s I Want My Hat Back.

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The first in line (by MattiasA)

This book looks great. Mattias Adolfsson’s blog is one of my favourites, and I drool at his super-detailed and effortless sketchbook drawings each time they pop up in my RSS reader.

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luclatulippe:

That’s How! An Illustrated Children’s Book by Christoph Niemann