Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Steve "The Dude" Rude's Offering Some Black Friday Specials!

If you're interested in that kind of thing. You know-- marker sketches (some in color), calendars, sketchbooks, prints and other fun items from one of the all-time comic book art greats.

Speaking of Black Friday and holiday shopping-- what are your holiday comic book-related wants? I'll share a few of mine:

1. Manga Studio EX 4 (Smith Micro Software, Inc.). Your very own digital comic book studio with every tool you could possibly need; you supply the talent. I've been messing around with version 3 for a while now and it's pretty powerful, especially its rulers function. Version 4 offers even more features. Yeah, if I got this I'd finish that graphic novel I've been working on for 10 years. And it would be awesome!

2. Four Color Fear: Forgotten Horror Comics of the 1950s edited by Greg Sadowski and John Benson (Fantagraphics). 320 pages of horror stories from the EC era. I've never read any of these, but I'd love to. Many of the greats are represented: Al Williamson, Jack Cole, Steve Ditko, George Evans and Wally Wood. I could care less about the story quality. I mean, I'm sure they're all pretty cool. I'm just jazzed by the prospect of such a huge slab of weird stuff from all these cats.

3. Genius, Isolated: The Life and Art of Alex Toth by Dean Mullaney and Bruce Canwell (IDW Publishing). I've long bemoaned the lack of Toth-related books. Image offers the indispensable Zorro (indispensable not for its lackluster stories but because it contains the highest concentration of Toth's sequential work available anywhere), but previous retrospectives are out of print and his comic book work is spread thin throughout a pile of expensive archive books. This book and the upcoming Setting the Standard (edited by Greg Sadowski... hey, he made this list twice!) go a long way towards correcting the error. Come to think of it, as an obsessed Toth fan, obviously I need both of these new books.

4. Al Williamson's Flash Gordon: A Lifelong Vision of the Heroic by Al Williamson, edited by Mark Shultz (Flesk Publications). Williamson passed away earlier this year, a crushing loss. Williamson is another surprisingly neglected artist; there have been some nice reprint volumes available at times, but not nearly enough considering his artistic stature. I will forever consider Al Williamson the finest illustrator ever to draw a comic story. Heroic space fantasy was his meat-n-potatoes, and what could be finer than Al Williamson drawing the greatest space adventurer of them all? I also want Al Williams Archives Volume 1 (also from Flesk).

5. X-9: Secret Agent Corrigan Volume 1 by Al Williamson and Archie Goodwin (IDW Publishing). Williamson continues to get his due.

6. Indoor Voice by Jillian Tamaki (Drawn and Quarterly). I love her loose and evocative linework on the graphic novel Skim (gloriously written by her cousin Mariko, by the way), so how could I not want this as well?

7. The Art of Jaime Hernandez: The Secrets of Life and Death by Todd Hignite (Abrams ComicArts). A long overdue look at the work of one of comics' finest storytellers.

Yeah, I could easily go to 10 or 20 of these but I'm going to leave off at lucky 7. It's Thanksgiving Day!

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