Jun 21, 2018

John Constantine and Sting

Alan Moore: But I can state categorically that the character only existed because Steve [Bissette] and John [Totleben] wanted to do a character that looked like Sting. Having been given that challenge, how could I fit Sting into Swamp Thing? I have an idea that most of the mystics in comics are generally older people, very austere, very proper, very middle class in a lot of ways. They are not at all functional on the street. It struck me that it might be interesting for once to do an almost blue-collar warlock. Somebody who was streetwise, working class, and from a different background than the standard run of comic book mystics. Constantine started to grow out of that.
 
2018: Sting will pen the foreword to the Constantine, Hellblazer: 30th Anniversary Celebration commemorative collection to be published this October. More HERE.
John Constantine aka Sting.

Jun 18, 2018

Alan Moore by Gianmaria Caschetto

Art by Gianmaria Caschetto.
Every now and then I received unexpected emails including an Alan Moore portrait.
Above you can see one of them, a nice sketch illustration by comics blogger Gianmaria Caschetto.
"[Alan Moore is] my favourite wizard", Caschetto wrote.

Jun 14, 2018

From Hell and... beyond

Excerpt from an interview published on EW.com on May 31, 2018.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Have you been in contact with Alan Moore at all about this?
Eddie Campbell: I’ve told Alan I’m doing it. I was like “Alan, if there’s anything you want to fix, you’ve gotta fix it now, this is your chance.” He hasn’t said anything so far. I might jog his memory by getting the stuff to him in the next week or two. If there’s any dialogue that’s wrong, now’s his time to fix it. He’s always talked about adding another appendix. When I spoke to him last month, he said “Eddie, maybe it’s time we do that other appendix, this is the only time we’ll be able to do it.” That’ll be a whole other dozen pages of illustration, but he wants to bring it up to date because in the last 30 years there’s been a lot of developments in Ripper-ology. Even though this was a crime that happened in 1888, every second year there’s a new book about it, where somebody’s found a new culprit. Five, six years ago, Patricia Cornwell went to huge expense buying Walter Sickert’s paintings to get DNA evidence from the paintings and compare it with DNA evidence from the murder site just to prove it was Walter Sickert. But since then somebody’s come out with another suspect. Everybody thinks they’ve got the last word on it. We did this 24-page appendix to the original From Hell called Dance of the Gull-Catchers, in which we ridiculed all the theories, including our own. It’s a grand piece of postmodernism, where you finish the book of “this is our theory, here’s why it’s right” by going “well no it isn’t, nobody’s right, it’s all baloney.” That was great fun doing that, we had a riot doing that in an almost comedic style. Alan wants to do another one where he brings it up to date. I’m not promising that, because we’ll probably have to beat him up to get it out. We’ll have to tie him to the computer and make him type it out. But we’ll see, it’s a possibility.

Jun 6, 2018

Cthulu rules

Art by Kevin O'Neill.
Above, an Alan Moore "Cthulu" sketch portrait by Kevin O'Neill. From Central Comics Paris' Instagram page.

Jun 1, 2018

Gene Ha on Alan Moore

Excerpt from an interview I did, via email, in November 2004. 
Translated and printed in Italy on Vertigo Presenta n. 45 magazine (Magic Press).

Alan Moore, Gene Ha and Zander Cannon collaborated on books such as Top 10 and Top 10: The Forty-Niners.

How is not only working with but co-creating with a comics living legend such as writer Alan Moore?
Gene Ha: Intimidating. He's a bit like Gandalf, but he talks like a British plumber instead of a British professor. He's perfectly at ease with himself, and he makes you feel comfortable too.
He's full of wonderful stories, and he loves to hear a good stories. You really can't help but notice how good he is at understanding how to tell stories. He's always aware how any plotline will affect the story for 10 or 20 issues ahead. And something new always pops up on every page.
I'll feed him ideas, and I'm always surprised by which ones he'll use and how he'll change them. I had an idea for Superman as an alcoholic, with super-vomit. Alan took that idea, but applied it to a Japanese movie monster instead. That's how we ended up with Gograh [see picture above].
I'd love to meet him someday, but so far I've only exchanged letters and talked to him on the phone.

May 29, 2018

Book Shambles Live at the Royal Albert Hall

Book Shambles live
Alan Moore will join Book Shambles live on Monday June 4th at the Royal Albert Hall, London.

It is a special live version of the popular Book Shambles podcast conducted by award-winning comedians and bibliophiles Robin Ince and Josie Long.

More info HERE and HERE.

May 21, 2018

Colourized From Hell

Below you can read an exclusive report by writer and comics journalist Koom Kankesan about his meeting with From Hell's artist and co-creator Eddie Campbell during the latest TCAF.
They talked about... the upcoming colourized From Hell edition!
Grazie, Koom!

Koom Kankesan: "I was really thrilled to meet Eddie Campbell. He’s a unique and interesting talent. I don’t know that there’s anybody else that can quite do what he does with his Alec material. And of course… From Hell has remained my favourite graphic novel for a long time now – it is a remarkable achievement. In person, Eddie is charming and lively. He has a beautiful Steranko-like shock of white hair and is even more dapper than his semi-autobiographical renderings, if you can believe it. He’s a bit of a joker and I’ve told him a few times how much I love From Hell. So, when he replied that he’s in the process of colouring it, I wanted to do one of those cartoon things where the character is floored and his feet angle up into the air beside an exhaust of air.

I’ve always thought of the black and white renderings as unique to From Hell. I had assumed that the fine line work and the moody atmosphere evoking London Victoriana were rendered that way on purpose, as if in imitation of engravings or illustrations in Victorian tabloid newspapers. Eddie found this observation interesting but I don’t think he agreed. I objected that colouring it would ruin the feel of the work and I think I might have been so passionate in my initial views that it perhaps even made him wince. Lovable and charming as Eddie is, the last thing you want to do is make him wince. He showed me some of the coloured pages on his laptop and the colours were lovely – he’s always had a great facility for paint and colour – but it did change the mood and atmosphere of some of the scenes. I said it’s like colourizing black and white films and asked him which he preferred – the black and white version of ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ or the colourized version. He said that he hadn’t seen the colourized version of that film but he had seen the colourized version of ‘Key Largo’ and quite enjoyed it. I mentioned Apocalypse Now and Apocalypse Now Redux. Those were the kinds of reservations I had.

Eddie also said he wanted to fix the continuity. I was trying to figure out what that meant because I couldn’t really remember any continuity problems in the plot or writing. He grabbed my collected edition of From Hell and flipped to the early, quite remarkable chapter where Netley and Gull are driving around London and Gull discourses on all the historical resonance. He pointed out that the chapter takes place in August and therefore it made no sense for Netley to wear a scarf. He also pointed out that they were atop a very elaborate coach, one that was more like a limousine, and would thus draw a lot of attention. Later on in the book, I think they’re on a hansom cab instead. He also pointed out a panel with a church where the perspective of the foreground and background don’t match. These were the things he wanted to address: more of an issue of accuracy and fidelity rather than continuity. Please see the following photos:
 
 
From Hell, selected pages. Art by Eddie Campbell.
The first volume of the colourized version is planned for September [by Top Shelf] and Eddie and I talked about possibly doing a phone interview then to discuss it in detail once it's out."

Apr 26, 2018

Rorschach by Dan Hipp

Art by Dan Hipp.
Above a gorgeous Rorschach by Dan Hipp.
"Hurm. 4x4 pen/ink, Prismacolor marker, colored pencil, acrylic, and a touch of photoshop for the screentone effect."