Monday, 26 August 2013

IRON page 07

Here's another page of IRON, and like page 06, it's currently unlettered. I find condensing down what I want to say into a managable form much harder than drawing pictures, so I tend to dither. The updated versions with text for pages 06 and 07 will probably arrive with page 08, since it's really the same narrative movement over all three pages.

This page - and the next really - follow the shift in viewpoint from the Saxon settlement up to the partially ruined Roman villa. That the peoples of the time abandoned the 'civilized' roman buildings and basically went to live in the shed is fascinating, and I think is also a cultural decision as well as a practical one. Yes, the skill and slave dependent lifestyle of the market economy Roman Empire would have been difficult to maintain, but I'd like to think that the locals - and the new settlers - wanted to move away from the Empire's beliefs. A lot seems to be written on 'what the Roman's did for us', but they also attempted to destroy the indiginous culture here. It's a miracle anything survived, and a lasting tribute to those who must have resisted Rome's influence.

I am very pleased with the centre warrior's helmet in panel 2.

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

IRON and it's influences.

Page 6 of IRON.

An updated version with text will magically appear later...

I thought I'd take some time to spell out some of my influences for IRON.  I'm not sure how interesting it is, but I'm doing it anyway!

My influences for this are pretty varied, and include Frank Bellamy, Francis Prior, Eric Rohmer, Claude Chabrol, Dale Mettam, Dave Elliot, Marc Laming and Valia Kapadai amongst many others.

Frank Bellamy really influences all my work, and I suspect all the work I shall ever do. A brilliant draughtsman and a wonderful storyteller, he's also the reason I draw.

Francis Prior is an archaeologist, specialising in the Bronze Age, who is I suppose best known for his appearances on Time Team. I find his approach to looking at the ordinary people of history inspiring, and despite the shift in time period to the Dark Ages, IRON is heavily influenced by that desire to examine the ordinary wonders of the everyday in history.

Eric Rohmer and Claude Chabrol were two of the leading lights in European New Wave cinema. Their revolutionary framing, pacing and storytelling transformed film making, and their influences are still felt today, in everything from blockbusters to art-house. I think it's interesting to look at their work through a sequential narrative lens, and try to take their lessons on board. That's certainly what I'm trying to do, but as to whether or not I have anything approaching the skill to so so, that's a different question.

Dale Mettam writes great stuff, and after briefly working with him on Jael he's transformed how I look at comics' writing. He's a nice chap too.

As is Dave Elliot, co-founder of Atomeka Press, head honcho, writer and editor on A1, and a ton of other stuff. When I was falling out of love with the medium his work rekindled it. He has been very kind about my doodling and knows who The Steel Claw was.

Marc Laming draws wonderfully, and the inspired looseness in his inking and his terrific control of line are things I can only dream of getting close to.

Valia Kapadai is perhaps the nicest person I know who draws comics. Annoyingly she's also perhaps the most talented.

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

More IRON!

Here are another couple of pages of IRON.

There are really a few reasons for me doing this little thing. It's a continuing experiment with this new style I've been working on - I want to see it in greyscale. Tacking both action and domestic scenes, and playing with how narrative might flow using it. It's also just to get the idea out of my head and onto a page, since it's no good to anyone stuck in my head.

I'd really love to be able to get some accurate and naturalistic dialogue going, but I don't think I have the ear for it, so I'm afraid we're stuck with the best I can do.

Which is a bit pants.

Still, who cares about all those words! Pictures is the bestest bit ov it.