When Marvel announced Girl Comics four years ago it unleashed a firestorm of outrage (just check out the comments if you care in the link). Now they are announcing a whole month of variant covers by female artists and everyone thinks it’s A-OK! Because suddenly women read comics.
The event will celebrate Women’s History Month in MarchÂ but also spotlight some of Marvel’s most popularÂ artists. â€ś2014 was a huge year for Women of Marvel, both in our comics and behind the scenes,â€ť says Marvel Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso in a statement. â€śMarvel now has more titles starring female leads than ever before, the Women of Marvel panel is one of the most highly attended at conventions, and the weekly Women of Marvel podcast continues to grow. Â In 2015, we intend to continue that tradition, and Marchâ€™s Women of Marvel variant covers â€” featuring 20 of the best female artists in the industry â€“ is just the beginning.â€ť
Here’s the complete list…and eight covers released so far, by some of the top cover artists out there such as Sana Takeda, Sara PIchelli, Colleen Doran, Amanda Conner and MORE. Can’t wait to see the whole list!
- All-New Captain America #5 by TBD
- All-New Hawkeye #1 by SHO MURASE
- All-New X-Men #39 by FAITH ERIN HICKS
- Amazing Spider-Man #16 by MING DOYLE
- Ant-Man #3 by KATIE COOK
- Avengers #42 by TBD
- Black Widow #16 by VANESA DEL REY
- Captain Marvel #13 by AFUA RICHARDSON
- Deadpool #43 by TBD
- Guardians of the Galaxy #25 by ERICA HENDERSON
- Inhuman #13 by JILL THOMPSON
- Legendary Star-Lord #10 by SANA TAKEDA
- Ms. Marvel #13 by TBD
- New Avengers #31 by SARA PICHELLI
- Rocket Raccoon #9 by JANET LEE
- S.H.I.E.L.D. #4 by COLLEEN DORAN
- Superior Iron Man #6 by TBD
- Thor #6 by TBD (Above image by Stephanie Hans)
- Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #3 by GURIHIRU
- Uncanny Avengers #3 by AMANDA CONNER
- Uncanny X-Men #33 by STACEY LEE
After taking a look over the solicitations for Marvel and DC in December, it’s time to take a look at Image’s new comics. There’s a whole new load of first issues, along with some specials and – uh-oh – a Black Kiss 2 Christmas Special. Ho-ho-ho?
CBR have the full list, which must have taken them ages to formatÂ - here are the cherry-pickings:
There are a lot of new stories starting this month, including Dead Body Road from Justin Jordan and Matteo Scalera (above) and The Saviors by James Robinson and J. Bone (below). The former will be a revenge story, with a man avenging the death of his wife, which happened during a botched robbery. The latter is a conspiracy story, with the hero uncovering an alien cabal who plan to take over the World.
Joseph Michael Linsner returns to his Cry for Dawn characters for a one-shot this month called Sin Boldly.
As it’s Christmas, Image have decided to celebrate with two specials – the first of which is Krampus! by Brian Joines and Dean Kotz, a story loosing the mythical anti-Santa after all the actual-Santas somehow lose the source of their powers.
Black Kiss 2 also has a Christmas special, with Howard Chaykin both writing and drawing the story. Look at the cover. Listen to this solicitation:
because nothing says “holiday fun” like an endless stream of incredibly nasty revenge sex.
Oh lordy. Hide the kids.
The final chapter of Carbon Grey begins this month, from Paul Gardner, Hoang Nhuyen, Khari Evans and Kinsun Loh
A studio edition of Jupiter’s Children #1 is out – basically a version without the colours, so you can see Frank Quitely’s artwork in black and white.
A Distant Soil II is released in trade this month, continuing Colleen Doran’s series.
Mind The Gap begins ‘Act II’, which seems to be essentially a ‘season two’ for the book. Issue #12 closes the mystery of the first season, and now the book moves onwards to some new mystery.
Image will be releasing The Complete Multiple Warheads in trade, compiling Multiple Warheads #1-4 and Multiple Warheads: Down Fall, both written and drawn by Brandon Graham.
Colleen Doran explains the secret history of Fallen Angels and other subjects of passing interest.
Itâ€™s February and love is in the airâ€”but in the town of Castleton, thereâ€™s a different kind of energy crackling. At the opening of Mangaman, written by Barry Lyga and illustrated by Colleen Doran, there is a tear in the fabric of Castletonâ€™s reality and from it drops a strange creature. Heâ€™s lithe and two-dimensional, with oversized eyes and a waist as small as his tiny mouth. Essentially, heâ€™s a typical manga dreamboat (perfectly named â€śRyokoâ€ť), except heâ€™s misplaced here in a Western comic.
This is no ordinary fish out of water. Instead, like a graphic novel Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, Lyga and Doran use the Western perceptions of manga to play with the medium. Ryoko enrolls in a typical American high school, where he is ridiculed by the schoolâ€™s jocks for his unusual looks and actions that would otherwise be normal in manga. Lyga sets up Doran with plenty of opportunities for visual in-jokes. While at recess, Ryoko leaps for a volleyball, all speed lines and exclamation pointsâ€”again, completely typical in an Eastern comic. Yet in this American high school, the kids freak out: â€śHey! Watch your speed lines!â€ť When Ryoko eats a hamburger in the cafeteria, he morphs into a muppet, his mouth opens far too wide into an exaggerated grin that pushes his cheeks so far up his face that his eyes become thin lines. Itâ€™s a stereotypical manga expression of glee, but the Castleton residents steer clear of him. The janitor grumbles, â€śLike I donâ€™t have anything better to do all dayâ€¦â€ť as he sweeps up the drawn lines that trail Ryoko's bombastic movements (in manga they simply disappear, but here they fall and collect on the floor).
Mangaman would be nowhere near as successful without Colleen Doran. She perfectly captures the otherworldliness of Ryoko, while seamlessly dropping him into Western comic panels (Doran shapes the American teens with expert detail and depthâ€”everything Ryokoâ€™s visuals lack). My favorite of Doranâ€™s subtle notes is the look of the American teenagers. Like a John Hughes film from the 1980s, the high-schoolers all look about ten years too old. Itâ€™s a fun touch to what does feel like a lost classic, because pretty soon Ryoko falls for an out-of-his-league girl: Marissa Montaigne, the knock-out blonde who refuses to give in to the bullies' bigotries.
As their relationship builds, so too does Mangamanâ€™s metafiction. Ryoko and Marissa realize they arenâ€™t only constrained by the townâ€™s small prejudices; they are also trapped within comic conventions. As they attempt to escape Castleton, they exploit the actual panels that surround them. Itâ€™s a love story within a comic book within a graphic novel, and Mangamanâ€™s heart is as big as its hyperbolic hero's eyesâ€”a Valentineâ€
More info here
Harbor Lights Restaurant, South Street Seaport Pier 17 3rd Floor, 6-8
Gone to Amerikay, the new Vertigo original graphic novel by Derek McCulloch and Colleen Doran, will have a book launch party, benefiting the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. McCulloch and Doran will both be at Harbor Lights Restaurant in New York City on March 30 from 6 to 8 pm, celebrating the release of their new book and demonstrating their support of the CBLDFâ€™s mission. All are welcome to join the celebration; admission will be free, though donations to the CBLDF are suggested. There will be complimentary hors dâ€™oeurves, and special guests from the comics community will be on hand to inaugurate Gone to Amerikay. Copies of the book will be on sale, courtesy of Midtown Comics.
Hm, when events are promoted only through Facebook I never see ‘em!
Anyway, Here’s a profile of the book, Doran and McCulloch in the WSJ:
The book started off as an adaptation of â€śThousands are Sailing,â€ť a song about immigrants by the Irish band the Pogues. While it ultimately moved away from that, Irish music and folk ballads still play a key role in the story â€“ they were â€śthe obsessive soundtrack of my childhood,â€ť Mr. McCulloch said.
But how to convey the impact of music in a medium where the reader canâ€™t hear it? It was â€śtricky,â€ť Mr. McCulloch said. Ms. Doran said she didnâ€™t want to use the clichĂ©d method of simply putting musical notes into the art, so she tried to convey the impact of the music by showing the listenersâ€™ reactions.
She also faced an enormous amount of research to make sure everything was depicted authentically. One small panel, depicting a uniform, took her forever to do â€“ because while she could find what the uniform looked like easily enough, it was nearly impossible to find what it looked like in color. â€śWe were pulling our hair out.â€ť
In a post on her artistic techniques, Colleen Doran reveals that she’s working on a graphic novel with Neil Gaiman, to be published by Dark Horse. The two previously collaborated on issues of THE SANDMAN.
The post wpould be interesting in its discussion of pencilling techniques alone!
My pencil technique is exactly the opposite of what they teach now in art school. I do not use the side of the pencil, or graphite. I use the sharp tip of the pencil, and build up everything from hundreds of strokes. This is the way old masters drew back in the day with silverpoint. Itâ€™s a look I love, but almost no one does it because it is so laborious. The popular prejudice is for the 1950-ish commercial art drawing style. I like that, but itâ€™s not what I want to do myself.
I am using this technique on the new Neil Gaiman graphic novel I am doing for Dark Horse. You can imagine how happy I am to be doing this project! The drawings will then be colored with thin washes of watercolor, digitally, or both.
The drawing above of Thessaly and the Sandman is a commission piece and not a sneak peek at the book.
As for what this book might be about…we’ll have to call out the legion of internet detectives for that.
Ah and here you go:
She is also currently adapting a Neil Gaiman short story into graphic novel form for Dark Horse, which will be released in 2012.
Thanks to detective Synsidar for the ground work on this.
Here are some ink doodles from my last sketchbook(Nov 08 to Dec 08) I've been studiously keeping sketchbooks since I was 14. I think there is no better tool in exploring your own artistic potential. Now of course I have boxes and boxes of them.
I am once again looking at being represented by an agent. I was talking with the super-talented and inspirational Colleen Doran earlier and she suggested my problem with agencies earlier may have been to do with the type of agents I was looking at. That perhaps a literary agent might be a better choice than an art agency. She has done a tonne of research on the subject and published the results here on her blog. At the moment I'm talking to 5 different publishers and it's just too much. things keep petering out. So, I'll give it another try.
And finally, do you like Lord Of The Rings? Well, blogger Kate Nepveu is weekly publishing a post about her reading of the book on the Tor.com site. I'll be reading along and leaving comments. Also, I may republish my thoughts here.