composition 3

30 05 2020

today some more composition ideas from major comic strip artists – moebius, jim holdaway, dino battaglia, hugo pratt, alex nino, john watkiss, sergio toppi, al williamson, alberto brecchia, john burns

© moebius, jim holdaway, dino battaglia, hugo pratt, alex nino, john watkiss, sergio toppi, al williamson, alberto brecchia, john burns





composition 2

29 05 2020

comic strips usually work with the same rules that apply for film, especially when it comes to the composition of the panels. interesting placements of the characters, their framing, viewing angles, the general readability and depth of the scene, balance of elements as well as a dramatic use of light can be found especially in comics done by the masters. I collected some interesting ‘shots’ from a wide diversity of artists – MOEBIUS, HUGO PRATT, ALBERTO BRECCHIA, JIM HOLDAWAY, AL WILLIAMSON, SERGIO TOPPI, JOHN BURNS, ESTEBAN MAROTO, DINO BATTAGLIA and others. first I only concentrated on their black/white work.

© MOEBIUS, HUGO PRATT, ALBERTO BRECCHIA, JIM HOLDAWAY, AL WILLIAMSON, SERGIO TOPPI, JOHN BURNS, ESTEBAN MAROTO, DINO BATTAGLIA





Le Trombone illustré 2

25 05 2020

© franquin / spirou





Le Trombone illustré 1

24 05 2020

published from 17.march to 20.october 1977 under the impetus of Franquin and Yvan Delporte, Le Trombone illustré is a supplement stapled thirty times in the middle of Spirou’s newspaper. independent of its format and spirit, this scratch-hair publication, which brought together artists from different editorial offices, was announced in n° 2026 of 10.february by the same blue footprints that had preceded the arrival of Gaston Lagaffe. a translation of the explosion of the adult comics phenomenon for adults (Fluide glacial, L’Écho des savanes, Métal hurlant, Charlie Mensuel…), Le Trombone breaks the formal conventions of the drawn story and the taboos of a rather well-meaning newspaper.

(translated from french wikipedia)

here now the first part of the covers of this incredible magazine, created by my most favorite comic strip artist – ANDRE FRANQUIN…

© franquin / spirou / trombone illustré





style 14.1

31 03 2020

during the first months in 1995 working on the style development for MULAN I was researching everything I could get from china, books about traditional art, photography of the environment and graphic novels. I call them graphic novels, because they are so different from the comic strips we are used to in our western world. CHEN-YI CHENG, who was responsible for the character design, and myself went through chinatown in L.A. and found after a while treasures of artwork.
below you will find one of these graphic novels, it must have been created by a real master! I wish I knew his name and could see some more of his work. maybe there is one of my chinese viewers who can help.

© ???





alfred j kwak 1.0

21 09 2019

all this original black/white artwork for ALFRED J KWAK was done in 1990 by harald siepermann and myself for merchandise publication, on t-shirts, bedsheets and so on. we had to create hundreds of illustrations within the shortest time. the producer of the tv-series, DENNIS LIVSON, had organised another team of illustrators to help us out. but it ended in a disaster. we didn’t want to drop the quality standard of the artwork below an acceptable level, so we just had to work day and night and do everything ourselves. and all that together with the unfinished third volume of the comic strip series. hectic days! to remind you, in those ancient times everything had to be drawn on paper and then colored with feltpen. photoshop would have made it much easier, but that was not invented yet.

© bilderfabrik
© van veen/siepermann/bacher





alfred j kwak calendar 1.1

18 09 2019

these are designs for a calendar I did in 1991 for the merchandise program that came with the tv-series based on the comic strip series THE STRANGE ADVENTURES OF ALFRED J KWAK, that harald siepermann, herman van veen and myself had created. the calendar was never finished, for some personal reasons I stopped working on the project and from then on hardly anything was ever published again. my whole work in germany stopped in 1991, I joined spielberg’s amblimation studio in london and started to work on CATS followed by BALTO, and concentrated from then on solely on animated feature films.

© bilderfabrik
© AJK van veen/siepermann/bacher





page 17

4 06 2016

alternative comic page A

© bilderfabrik





alfred j.kwak 1990

19 02 2016

alfred j.kwak 1647

alfred j.kwak 1648

© van veen, siepermann, bacher





mulan findings 10

17 03 2015

mulan7794

that’s how MUSHU looked like around mid 1995. CHEN-YI CHENG came up with that version. as you can see the design is very much influenced by chinese dragon pictures and sculptures, the cartoony touch is missing. disney had given me the opportunity to invite comic strip artists from all over the world, artists who could give us different ideas about the look of the film MULAN. REGIS LOISEL was the first comic strip ‘giant’ I invited. you can see his designs in some of my earlier posts. another artist who joined us for 2 weeks was vietnamese born belgian comic strip artist and painter VINH KHOA. and in summer 1995 my former partner on the ALFRED J.KWAK comic strip and tv-series, HARALD SIEPERMANN, came to L.A. for a few weeks. harald concentrated on MUSHU, and as you can see below, added the missing cartoony touch to the character.

mulan7792
mulan7791
mulan7790
mulan7789
mulan7788
mulan7787

© disney enterprises, inc





two for tea

13 08 2013

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

DAAN JIPPES did this limited edition poster around 1981 in connection with the publication of his comic strip album TWEE VOOR THEE. daan is a master in the art of visual storytelling, he created numerous covers and stories for the dutch DISNEY comic magazine, spent some years at disney publications in L.A. and from around 1989 at disney animated feature film. we worked together for many years, at disney and amblimation. he is an incredible artists, can draw like ‘hell’ and is a good friend.

© daan jippes





corto maltese

25 01 2013

HUGO EUGENIO PRATT, june 15, 1927 – august 20, 1995, was an Italian comic strip artist who combined strong storytelling with extensive historical research. like his most popular creation, CORTO MALTESE, whose stories first appeared from 1970 on, pratt was a restless world traveller all his life. born in rimini, italy, he spent most of his childhood in venice, then moved with his parents to ethiopia. back to italy he became part of the VENICE GROUP, an association of writers and artists, one of the members – DINO BATTAGLIA. together with them he worked on several comic strip series until because of poor work conditions for comic strip artists in post war italy he moved with a few others to argentine in 1949, where he created numerous comic series for argentine magazines. then pratt taught for a while at an art school in sao paolo, brazil, until in 1959 le left for london to contribute his work to war picture libraries. he briefly moved back to argentine, but settled finally from 1962 on in europe, first in milan, italy, then from 1970 to 1984 in france, later in lausanne, switzerland where he died in 1995 of cancer.

pratt at work

pratt is considered to be one of the greatest comic artists, who cited ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON, JOSEPH CONRAD, FENIMORE COOPER and JACK LONDON as influences, along with cartoonists WILL EISNER and MILTON CANIFF. pratt’s cult series protagonist, CORTO MALTESE, an anti-hero sailor-adventurer world-traveler, takes the reader to the most fascinating places in the world, from the WWI-era pacific islands and their smugglers and pirates to dramatic events during the russian civil war after the october revolution and the spanish civil war.

corto maltese side
corto 2
corto pratt orig.1976

one of pratt’s stories, CORTO MALTESE IN SIBERIA from 1975, has been translated to the big screen as a traditional animated feature film. LA COUR SECRETE DES ARCANES released in september 2002 in france. directed by PASCAL MORELLI and with stunning backgrounds by FREDERIC BLANCHARD, GISELLA GIAMPIETRO, LUCIE TREMBLAY, OLIVIER VATINE and JEAN-FRANCOIS MIGNAULT, creates a believable ‘pratt-world’ with all his characters come ‘alive’. it must have been a challenge to go from comic to animation. it shows in some parts of the film, – what works in a graphic novel doesn’t necessarily work in film. but, compared to a lot of other animation, this film is a visual masterpiece. below some of the artwork.

1corto poster
corto maltese 1
corto maltese 2
corto maltese 3
corto maltese 4
corto maltese 5
corto maltese 6
corto head 2
corto head constr.1

© hugo pratt / ellipse animation / canal+





alfred

18 09 2012

digging through boxes and drawers I found some historic ‘ducks’, probably from 1988 / 1989, – ALFRED JODOCUS KWAK. the concept had been developed by dutch entertainer HERMAN VAN VEEN, HARALD SIEPERMANN and myself did all the thousands of drawings for 3 comic books, 4 educational books, the storyboards and style-designs for a 52-episode tv series ( produced in japan ) as well as tons of drawings for the connected merchandise ( about 400 different products available in some bigger stores and QUELLE at that time ). there was no photoshop, it all had to be drawn with steel-nibs and chinese ink on some white sheets called ‘paper’ and colored with extremely life threatening chemicals out of funny looking felt-sticks. I know from my students that these little unknown details have to be explained to a younger generation…






© van veen / siepermann / bacher





moebius

11 03 2012

8 May 1938 – 10 March 2012

JEAN HENRI GASTON GIRAUD, or as we knew him under his pseudonyms MOEBIUS and GIR, has died today in paris after a long battle with cancer, age 73. besides his creations in the comic strip world – BLUEBERRY, THE MAGAZINE METAL HURLANT, THE AIRTIGHT GARAGE, ARZACH and L’INCAL – moebius worked in live action and animation films – ALIEN, THE FIFTH ELEMENT, TIME MASTERS, LITTLE NEMO and TRON. HAYAO MIYAZAKI and GIRAUD were longtime friends. miyazaki said about moebius’ work – through ARZACH, which dates from 1975 I believe, I only met it in 1980, and it was a big shock. not only for me. all manga authors were shaken by this work. unfortunately when I discovered it, I already had a consolidated style. so I couldn’t use his influence to enrich my drawing. though, even today, I think he has an awesome sense of space. I directed NAUSICAA under MOEBIUS’ influence. –

© moebius





alex nino 11

16 12 2011

ALEX NINO created the following illustrations for the comic novel …JUST PASSING BY! in 1999. in my opinion it is the best work I ever saw from him. he allowed me to xerox the oversized originals before they went into printing and the text bubbles were added. unbelievable artwork, all drawn with a simple pen, hardly with any corrections on the total of twenty pages. the masterpiece was published in july 1999 in FRANK FRAZETTA FANTASY ILLUSTRATED, vol.1, number 7.



© alex nino / quantum cat entertainment





regis loisel 3

6 08 2011

before I am gonna show more of REGIS LOISEL’S designs he did for disney’s MULAN, some more of his stunning artwork in his comic strip series PETER PAN. he wrote the story, came up with the layout, did all the artwork (incl.lettering) and colored everything. the panels read like a film, the staging is flawless, not too talk about the composition and the use of textures in the backgrounds.








© regis loisel / editions vents d’ouest





regis loisel 2

24 07 2011

for everybody who is not familiar with REGIS LOISEL’S comic-strip work I am posting some pages, sketch-page and final color-page, as well as some character designs from his PETER PAN comic-strip version. the six-volume series was published in france between 1990 and 2004 by EDITIONS VENTS D’OUEST ( http://www.ventsdouest.com ). the titles of the series are – LONDRES, OPIKANOBA, TEMPETE, MAINS ROUGES, CROCHET and DESTINS. next will be more of REGIS’ MULAN designs.





© regis loisel / editions vents d’ouest





regis loisel 1

21 07 2011

as far as I remember it was sometime in 1995 during the preproduction of MULAN when my producer at disney PAM COATS asked for my advice about possible illustrators or comic-strip artists who might be willing to work with us for a short time. the more diverse in style, the better. the first name that came to my mind was REGIS LOISEL, next to MOEBIUS one of the most influental french comic-strip artists. after his stunning four volume series LA QUETE DE L’OISEAU DU TEMPS he had started his version of PETER PAN that promised to be even better. I admired the worlds he created, beautifully designed environments as well as very unusual character-design. and – what I liked the most – he was as much away from disney as you could imagine! that’s why I did not really believe he would say yes. finally I talked to him on the phone, he tried to speak a bit english and I tried to remember all my half-forgotten french. somehow it was a good conversation because he agreed to come to L.A. for two weeks to work with us.

these two weeks I will not forget, we spent a lot of time together. next to working with him in my office I showed him L.A. and some of the neighborhood. and we had great dinners and a lot of wine. my french improved and REGIS even learned to comunicate with the other artists in english. he was the nicest guy and what an artist! anyway – we stayed in touch for a while afterwards until he moved to canada and I left disney. his series PETER PAN became a six volume MASTERPIECE. as soon as he had finished a new book he sent me a copy together with a beautiful sketch, treasures in my collection. recently I found copies of the MULAN-designs he had done during the two weeks he stayed with us and I am planning to post some of them. in a way his designs are very similar to ALEX NINO’S work, but he added a lot more story in his sketches, came up with great gags and ideas I wish we had included in our film.



© disney enterprises, inc / regis loisel





alex nino 10

13 07 2011

early in 1999, while ALEX NINO and I were still working at disney, he came to my office to show me a whole pile of new comic pages he had done. the black/white pages were oversized, bigger than A3, and – stunning! alex was euphoric, ‘I am back!’ he had made a new deal with a comic publishing house and hoped for a whole series of publications. the pen+ink drawings were the best I had seen for many years and reminded me somehow of the masters of the barock and rokoko sculptures. like usual he could not explain how he had done them, I could not even imagine how that complex work of composition, exquisite character drawings and textures had been created. of course without any rough sketching and planning, like I had seen him working on MULAN. anyway – following is the cover of the magazine where his story appeared together with several others, released in july 1999. alex had allowed me to xerox his original drawings, I post a few of them and 2 double pages of the printed version, with the added text-blocks.









© alex nino / quantum cat entertainment publ.





cover

5 11 2010

during the time in 1989, when DAAN JIPPES and I worked together on the pre-production of disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST in L.A., DAAN helped me out with some merchandise illustrations for ALFRED J.KWAK. blue-pencil sketch and inking by the master himself, illustration size about 20 x 20 cm.



© harlekijn, van veen, siepermann, bacher








The Hidden History of Oz

Long before Dorothy came to Oz, Glinda and the Wizard changed everything.

Ellen Li

Illustration & Design

WordPress.com

WordPress.com is the best place for your personal blog or business site.

The Hidden History of Oz

Long before Dorothy came to Oz, Glinda and the Wizard changed everything.

Ellen Li

Illustration & Design

WordPress.com

WordPress.com is the best place for your personal blog or business site.