We just posted new pages of original art from Motor Girl 2 & 3 in the store. These pages are ink on 2-ply Strathmore Bristol, size 11 X 16 inches. Sometimes you can see edits and changes on the page, done with white out or removable labels that I redraw or re-letter onto. This stage of the process is wonderfully old fashion and I enjoy it so much. Once a page like this is done though, it’s all state-of-the-art steps to finish: scanning the art on a large hi-res scanner into Photoshop for tweeking and cleaning, then putting the pages together in InDesign for the book, save the book as a hi-res PDF that I then FTP to the printer who sends me a PDF proof within a couple of hours and I approve via email and BAM! it goes to press on a large 1 million dollar machine, is stapled on an old fashion machine, boxed by hand, trucked to Diamond Distributors warehouse in Memphis, sorted by hand for orders, then trucked to stores all over the country where wise comics folk with good taste lovingly put the new issue on the shelf and recommend it to every person who enters the premises. So each of these pages has quite a history. Offering them back to the people who read my stories is magic in that these pages end up in homes all over the world. How wonderful that is to think about, and it assures me that the pages will survive, that they won’t ALL be in one place when a fire breaks out or something (lots of artists bios have an awful studio fire story).
So, I love my pages but I want you to have them. Like a violin maker and his handmade instruments, my pages are my creative children but I have to let them go out into the world because that’s part of the reason why you make art to begin with. So check out the Motor Girl original art listings and see if one my kids speak to you. It would be my honor for you to have one.
Motor Girl #2, page 4.
I was a teen drawing comics with a Bic pen on notebook paper when I walked into a Half-Price Book Store and saw a page of original comic on the wall for sale. I didn’t know the artist or story but it was professional, old-school stuff for a horror story like a 1970’s Creepy magazine. It was hanging at eye level and I could stand right up to it and study a pro page for the first time. I must have stood there for 15 minutes with my nose 12 inches from the page studying it from corner to corner. It was the first time I’d ever been able to see how a pro uses a brush and pen on paper, the skillful draftsmanship, the extensive use of white-out for corrections and effects, the blue pencil ruled lettering, the paste-on’s… even the size of the page was something I’d never seen before, a proper 11 x 17 inch bristol page. I studied that page and thought, “I get it. I could do this. I WANT to do this.” It sort of changed my life. Looking at original art close up is WAAAAAAY different than looking at what is in print. A lot of what I know was learned by studying the originals of other artists.That’s what they mean by standing on the shoulders of those who came before you. So try to stand on the shoulders of the best, the giants. They seem to be in another league when you first look, but the more you look the more you see and then you get that break-through, the “Aha” moment.
So, I thought I’d post some close-ups from Motor Girl 3 for any young artists out there interested in the craft of comics. Look closely and you’ll see, “it’s just lines on paper” (R. Crumb). You can do this.
Click on the 3 art selections below to open them in their own page, then click again on the art to enlarge it fully.
Run to your local comic shop or head straight to our webstore and grab the new issue of Motor Girl 3. It’s a helluva ride!!
Reposting this Zen Hulk drawing because you may need it during these tense times. Print it out and pin it beside whatever you like to smash daily, like a TV or work computer or that fax machine you wish would die.
Here’s the cover art to Motor Cover #5. And then the color version by master colorist Steve Hamaker. I LOVE how this one turned out! I can see my Japanese and European comics influences in the art and layout. Can you?
This beauty should hit the stands early April.