style has become all fiddly and my mind’s all over the place
with the MONSTERS book. I’m so aware that it’s now black
and white and well over half of it was designed for my color to separate
and pace the word balloons. Without color the black and white balloons
go astray from their reading order, so I’m crosshatching the
hell out of the drawings to help redefine the sequencing of the dialogue.
Some of this stuff looks like bleedin’ etchings, now. Christ
almighty! But I can also do extremely simple things.”
points out an Adastra portrait that is simple and yet stunning. “You could
break it down to cartoonists who could literally do a stick figure almost
and give that little drawing character. Bill Watterson can do very flash
stuff when he wants to, but at the same time he can just do a simple
cartoon and there’s character there and he’s tuned enough
to that character that he is a living thing created out of nothing on
paper. That’s what comics can do. Comic books can be anything.
It’s the intent, it’s the capability to transfer your
intent onto paper, unconsciously channeling the sense of personality
offer a few observations about Princess Adastra: she’s tough
but she doesn’t show off, she’s confused or apologetic
at times and vulnerable, despite her bawdiness. This is what makes
her real, despite the appearance of her character and the fantasy of
her world. “I’m
very pleased you said that, thanks. It means a lot to me when people
really see the content of the characters.”
smiles. “Again, I didn’t know that would happen. I had
an inkling about her personality as she was emerging, but when she
fully manifested and said ‘Here I am, deal with it,’ I
had no choice but to go along with her. The guys were intended to be
the stars of the story but as Heros pointed out “We wouldn’t
have a play if it wasn’t for Adastra standing on center stage” or
whatever he said. So they took rear stage as the shadows of Adastra’s
bright star. But in the long run I don’t think they really minded.
There’re several scenes where Strangehands is trying to emulate
her twentieth century Earth slang, which, quite honestly, really tickled
me. That a self-possessed egocentric god like Strangehands could be
so intimidated by Addy that he has to ingratiate himself that way totally
defined Strangehands for the rest of the series. When I was writing
Young GODS, Addy was almost as much a surprise to me as she was to
the readers. That’s where creativity really shimmers, y’know.
Comics are usually made as a product first and foremost, but why not
think of packaging the product after the creativity has been unleashed?
I went through that whole thing about product. Even in the case of
Conan we had a processed beginning, then a middle, and an end. There
wasn’t that much room to allow inspiration to fly. It was a Marvel
comic in the 1970s and I did all those stringently-paced comic books
where Roy Thomas’ version of Conan was obliged to soliloquize.
That’s embarrassing. It’s okay for a period, you can do
that shit for a while, but then you’ve just got to grow up or
get the hell out of the arena.”