The Re-paneled Blog is one where different artists redraw comic pages originally drawn by classic comic artists. My entry was chosen for Wednesday's post there. I "re-paneled" or redrew a page from Buddha by Osama Tezuka. What I like about that book is that it is the story of a spiritual leader, but with a lot of humor and slapstick. I like how he used goofy cartoon characters in settings that were often extremely realistic and detailed with beautiful pen work. I am usually not a manga fan, but I admire Tezuka. He has been called The Walt Disney of Japan or the God of Manga. He is known for creating Astro Boy and many other characters. In his lifetime, he drew 50,000 pages of comics.
I did this project as a learning exercise. He definitely has some panel compositions that I wouldn't have otherwise thought of. As I did it, I replaced many of his characters from my own work -- including Halcolm and myself.
Here is the cover to my next comic, Artist to Artist. Drawn by me, and colored by Chris Schweizer of Crogan's Adventures fame. I am hoping within a month to have copies.
If you've been reading recent posts, you know all about this book. If not, let me tell you. These are all true stories about artists that have been related by art historians and biographers. Sometimes truth is stranger --and funnier -- than fiction! In each story, one artist interacts with another. Whenever artists get together, things happen! Sometimes it's inspiration, competition, camaraderie, and sometimes someone loses an ear!
The artists who appear in this comic are Van Gogh, Gauguin, Cezanne, Renoir, Matisse, Picasso,, Mondrian, Calder, Rauschenberg, Duchamp, Johns, Warhol, Warhola, and Wales! So, I have written myself into the history of modern art. I think that took a lot of cojones!
I hope you will buy it and read it and love it. I plan to have copies available to sell at The Mini-Bot Arty Party at the Elks Lodge in Elmira, NY on June 10. (Sponsored by the Heroes Your Mom Threw Out Comic Book Shop).
This year I had a table at the Athens Artsfest. It was a great crowd this year. The newspaper said "tens of thousands" attended. It really is huge, and gets better every year. I sell quite a few comics when I participate.I try to have a page going or something, because some people are curious about the process.
If things are slow, I will make a free sketch for kids, or for grownups -- free with purchase. Now, keep in mind, sketch means "sketch", but this young man was pretty pleased with his dinosaur.
I was back to back with Paul Bozzo, an amazing artist who makes textured paintings. He is a good friend, so during breaks, we can cover for one another. I like it when he takes break, because it is fun to demonstrate his process. Somehow his camera captured his ability to communicate from the break room, Obi-wan Kenobi style, "Andy, don't use so much Force!"
A couple weekends ago, I was asked to present a "demo of a demo." Participants of the Endless Mountains Writing Project
are asked to create a presentation for other teachers that demonstrate
activities that integrate the dynamic teaching of writing with subject
areas. In 2005, when I participated in the EMWP, my demo was on using
teach the writing of dialogue and the research that supports the use of
comics to teach.
Since then, I've presented that about
tweaking it a little each time to illustrate how we can use comics to
teach reading, literary devices, anti-bullying, and just about anything.
I've presented it at the National Conference for Teachers of English,
the Keystone State Reading Conference, the Norman Rockwell Museum, and
many other places. It is always well-received, because I think it's one
example of how teachers can stress essential skills, while at the same
time offer opportunities for creative activity -- and fun!
Part of my presentation included drawing activities such as "how to create original cartoon characters".
Here are a few of this year's participants in the Endless Mountains Writing Project. The philosophy of the National Writing Project is that teachers are change agents, and
play a vital role in leading sustained efforts to improve
learning in our schools. NWP teacher-leaders study and share effective
practices that enhance student writing and learning, work
collaboratively with other educators, design resources, and take on new
roles in effecting positive change.
I always say that the Writing Project was the best professional development experience I ever participated in and I highly recommend it!