Hassan (Hass) makes Strip Panel Naked, a YouTube series focusing on breaking down comic art. He also does this a lot on his twitter (@HassanOE). He might make films that you'd like.
Strip Panel Naked: ‘The Underwinter’ And Ray Fawkes’ Art Of Change
Ray Fawkes is back, bringing his staple watercolour art to the first issue of The Underwinter. The majority of the book is rendered in a particular style, but Fawkes changes his approach fairly dramatically for a single sequence near the end of the book. It's a similar technique to a few different things I've talked about in this column on other occasions, but there's a very interesting element to it that makes this particular example a little different, and worth further exploration.
Reading List: The Ten Essential Alan Moore Comics
Alan Moore is known as one of the most famous and inventive comics writers of all time. His major works are often cited not just as the best comics, but as some of the best moments of storytelling in literature. In fact, Watchmen was one of the few comics listed on Time's 100 Best Novels in 2005. Over the many years that he's been writing comics, Moore has produced multiple works that are rightly regarded as classics. In this list of ten essentials, I've tried to cover works that fit into the three periods of Moore's work as I see them.
Strip Panel Naked: The Perfect Pacing Of ‘Kill or be Killed’
I'm a firm believer that comics aren't a medium that favor page after page of dialogue, so you need interesting ways to present that information. This month's Kill or be Killed, by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Elizabeth Breitweiser, presents a perfect example.
Strip Panel Naked: Framing Dialogue in ‘Sons of Anarchy’
There's a really famous set of panels that Wally Wood curated over the years, traditionally referred to as "Wally Wood's 22 Panels That Always Work!!". It's a set of panels that will always work when, as an artist, you're stuck in a situation of characters speaking to each other page after page. sometimes it's necessary for the story, so these 22 panels are ways to visually change up your visuals through the pages. In Sons of Anarchy: Redwood Original #8, by Ollie Masters, Eoin Marron, Adam Metcalfe and Ed Dukeshire, there are a few pages that really highlight how Marron has a clear grasp of those panels.
Good Thing: How Valiant Makes Blockbuster Superheroes Accessible
I'm not a major superhero kinda guy. I came to comics fairly late, and never managed to dive that much into the superhero realm. I think I always thought it was too big, with too much to catch up on, and a lot of the superhero books I read when I was younger always seemed like they knew something I didn't. That whole lore and world existed way before I was even born. I even came to Valiant's rebooted universe pretty late, only catching up with it recently. But with Valiant, I found a superhero universe I could actually jump into.
Strip Panel Naked: The Direct Approach of Jeff Lemire’s ‘Royal City’
I've been a fan of Jeff Lemire ever since I first read The Essex Country Trilogy five or so years ago. Through a lot of the stories where he's been writer and artist, there's a very direct approach to framing that he rarely deviates from, particularly in work such as the current Image Comics series Royal City, where he takes a more down-to-earth tack. It's hard to tell if this is something Lemire is doing purposefully to create this effect, or if it's just the style of his art. Either way, the effect it creates is perfect for the character-focused, humanising stories that Lemire typically tells.
Good Thing: Andrea Sorrentino’s Grounded Approach To Logan
Superheroes are usually all about flying around, big fights, and being larger than life. In Old Man Logan, the outgoing creative team of Andrea Sorrentino, Jeff Lemire and Marcelo Maiolo mixes that with a slightly different approach. In this series, Logan remains pretty grounded. His costume becomes a brown leather jacket, and most of the time his fights are pretty brutal, and mostly involve people getting straight up punched in the face. And it all hinges on Sorrentino's take on Wolverine. It's leaning heavily on realism, with sharp blacks that add a noirish vibe.
Strip Panel Naked: Toying With Scale In ‘God Country’
There's a really fun set-up in God Country, by Donny Cates, Geoff Shaw, Jason Wordie and John J. Hill, which starts the heavily utilize the idea of scale in the second issue. It becomes a major feature of the work, and one that the team keeps drawing attention to, page after page.
Good Thing: Geof Darrow is Back to Blow Your Mind
The first time anyone reads a Geof Darrow comic, I can only imagine them having the exact same experience of their head exploding in some over-the-top, ridiculous way that only Darrow could illustrate. His brand of hyper-detailed hyper-violence is hard to replicate, and even just seeing a single panel of his work is enough to know that Darrow is unlike any other. So it's definitely a Good Thing that Darrow is heading back to comics this year with a new mini-series of Shaolin Cowboy.
Strip Panel Naked: Cascading Panels in David Finch’s ‘Batman’
My favourite thing about writing Strip Panel Naked every week is getting the chance to be surprised. A smarter man might have a better plan to tackle this article routinely, but mine is always the same: read comics, be surprised. This week it was the first comic on the pile that caught me off-guard, with Tom King, David Finch, Danny Miki, Jordie Bellaire and John Workman's Batman #17, as part of DC's Rebirth. There's a technique Finch employs throughout the issue to create a sense that everything is slowly unravelling and falling apart, in that he lets the panels start slipping away on each page. You can see how the pages aren't formulaic in their approach to panel layout; there's not really any grids, and panels are constantly overlapping.