Posts Tagged ‘John Porcellino’

Working 100% with John P


Saturday, January 15, 2011

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Hello and welcome to Comic Comics weekend edition. This week I asked the great John Porcellino to talk a little bit about drawing his comics at print size – or as John likes to say working “100%.” Please enjoy.
Hey all,

Mr. Frank asked me to write about making comics at 100%, or the same size as the published form.

I started making lots of drawings as a kid, using scrap paper I found in my Dad’s office. So I grew up drawing on 8 1/2 x 11 inch paper. I also began making little booklets… paper of various sizes folded in half and glued along the “spine” which I’d then fill with stories and drawings. When I was a freshman in high school, I realized that if I folded letter-sized paper in half, and drew my comics on them that way, my Dad could photocopy them at his office and I could hand them out (without staples or binding of any kind) to my friends. Thus was created my very first zine: a D&D/Cerebus inspired comic called Tales of Hogarth the Barbarian Pig. At the time I was almost wholly unaware of the comic book world. I played D&D, and the hobby shop in my area carried copies of Dragon magazine, which featured a satiric comic in the back called Phineas Fingers. Somehow I saw a copy of Cerebus too, and lifted the animal idea without ever reading the comic itself.

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Faith in Comics


Saturday, December 25, 2010

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I wanted to do a post on the connection between illuminated manuscripts and comics but then I got sidetracked a little bit. From what I understand illuminated manuscripts were made like modern “assembly line” comics. They divided up the labor to construct the book. One guy did the calligraphy, another did the drawings, another did the “inking”, another the color and yet still others bound the book itself. Thinking about this also got me thinking more specifically about how I find it interesting that many of the leading alt/art cartoonists of yesterday and today come from interesting and varied religious backgrounds. Like maybe we’re all re-incarnated monks who used to sit for hours laboring over some miniscule drawing back in the 15th century or something. I’m kidding of course. But when I started thinking about my friends who are cartoonists who “had religion” I was surprised – or maybe I wasn’t – by the list I compiled. I dunno if there is a connection between “religion” – or “faith” – and comics – but there is something there. (more…)

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Saturday, October 3, 2009

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Last one. Very brief. Sort of like a comment in the comment section of the last post.

One of the best parts about SPX is the hang-out after the Ignatz Awards. I’ve never actually attended the awards, but I like the drinking afterward. Anyways, me and Ed Piskor were bullshittin’ for awhile. Girls Roller Derby was the subject. And then we made fun of Jim Rugg. A laff riot.

Then James Kolchalka and I starting riffing on some of his old mini-comics. I couldn’t remember the name of my favorite one. It was Paradise Sucks. When was that? 1994? Then I just went off about how important John Porcellino’s Spit and a Half distro was to me and “the community” back then. And somehow, I was able to use that as a springboard for telling James that he “won the war” for us. Cuz, for me, when I saw James’ hardcover Sketchbook Diaries in New York City bookstores in 2002 2004, I felt like he had won. Meaning, he was able to carry his lo-fi personal vision to the mainstream venue without altering his voice.

Mr. Kolchalka reminded me that that big hardcover only sold so well, but that he appreciated what I was saying.

What am I saying? I’m saying that the lesson of the “small press” is that one can hone one’s personal voice within a support group of like-minded folks without making fatal concessions to the larger marketplace. And in these days of 500-page graphic novel debuts, it’s an important lesson. I could go on and on, but I think it would be like preaching to the choir.

The rest of the con was great. But since I think we’re all tired of SPX reports, I’m ending mine here. See you next year!

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