This week’s longform choice is Dylan Meconis’s new webcomic, Family Man. I never read Bite Me, the webcomic that launched Meconis into the limelight (she started Bite Me when she was a whopping 17 years old), but I’ve seen her art in various places and it always looked fantastic, so I was excited to sit down and read her work as a more mature cartoonist with a big first effort (and complete!) under her belt.
The results are good. First off, Meconis is a fabulous artist. I really like the style of her art, and the storytelling is well paced and free from confusion. You can tell the story is large in scope; Meconis is only two chapters in, and there has been some foreshadowing that supernatural elements are going to make their way into the plot. The premise hooked me right away also, because it isn’t often that you read about a scholar in 1768 Germany. It’s a unique read by a rising talent, and definitely worth checking out.
So, this economy sucks, yeah? I know I can’t get my weekly comic fix on as big as I’d like. No reason to despair though! There are a ton of great comics online to read, for free. That’s right — free.
Like most of you out there, I have my favorite webcomics that I read every morning over coffee at work. They are all humor strips, and they are a great way to start the day for me. But many of those don’t update over the weekend, so when I found myself bored a couple Sundays ago, I decided to catch up on some of the longform webcomics. For those unfamiliar with the term, longform webcomics are typically online graphic novels, or webcomics that are one complete story versus an ongoing strip.
Longform webcomics are great to read in one sitting, so with that in mind, I spent a recent weekend afternoon catching up on my friend Kory Bingaman’s webcomic Skin Deep. It’s a fantastic piece of work, where you can see Kory merging and melding all of the things that she loves into her own story and creating her own point of view of the world. Like most of us first starting out, her early pages show a bit of clumsy storytelling and rougher art. However, her new Halloween storyline blows me away with how far she has come in such a short time. The art is marvelous to look at, and I’m excited to see where the characters are headed. This lady is going places. Soon. I’d recommend getting an eyeful now so you can say you were a fan back when.
I’m going to be reading a new longform webcomic every weekend, which I’d like to “review” (in quotes because I’m not really a reviewer – I just like to point out stuff I like for people). Are there any out there that you would recommend I check out?
I was reading the latest issue of The Comics Journal this morning before work (maaaaaybe on the toilet, maybe not) and was reading Tim O’Neil’s best of 2007 list. O’Neil mentioned Comic Art #9 which contained a separate pamphlet by Ivan Brunetti: Cartooning: Philosophy and Practice.
I immediately purchased it off of Amazon, especially after reading the following piece from his review on PopMatters:
What the field of comics has desperately needed for quite some time is an introductory style manual, and Brunetti’s style is just sparse enough to illustrate essential principles without bogging down in extraneous detail. At the risk of unnecessary effusion, Brunetti has given the cartooning world something very similar to what Strunk & White gave to prose with their Elements of Style.
Sold. And what’s better is that this is the perfect excuse to try a magazine that I’ve been hearing great things about for a long time. 2007 was the year I was truly exposed to Brunetti (his cartooning and philosophies) and I appreciate his point of view. This manual sounds like it is worth the price of the magazine alone.
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