Sunday, July 9, 2017

Moonslight and The Words

I talked an artist into working with me and he seems less than thrilled about working with me again. But he gave me a bunch of drawing that I did not use in the reboot of GOMO GUIDE: THONEPORT. And a couple that were - underutilized. Like this picture, which I used in the collage that became the cover, but it continues to appeal to me in its raw form.

The moonlights scene - Night of many moons on Sho Caudal.
This to me is like a well composed scene from a 1930s black and white film, rich in the grayscales, the composition, and the lamps of a great studio trying to similat the light of more than one moon. I can see the blue wash of Shal above and behind to the left, the brilliance of full Tra forward and overhead, and probably the dul amber wash of Gobey setting to the far distance left ahead. The blue skin of Salu would almost glow in blue light, and the washes of white and amber/brown would just give it all a sense of artistic fiction.

I think I may grow this and tweak the grayscale version, but really I want to paint it, which would mean Photoshop paint. Not brushes on canvas, or in my case, masonite.

World of Comic Art
Art is loathe to die in me. Today I was searching for specfic origihnal pieces by Miles, and in that search I found some of my old drawings. I think writing was the right way to go. But when I was younger, I wanted to be a cartoonist. A woman most of you will never have heard of. Dorothy McGreal. I knew her because of her sons, who were into comic books. We looked at doing a comic book together - I was an old man of 13 at the time, and it was a question of who should write, who should pencil, and who should judge that. Well, Mrs. McGreal was also a publisher - The World of Comic Art, the first slick paper serious magazine devoted to comics - newspaper strips priarily. (I had a copy, but it was lost in the great shed failure through storms - long story, but aren't they all). We each did a couple of pages as artist, inker, and writer. her sons became penciler and inker, and I was told I should write.
I thought I still had a page from my 1963 "audition" with Mrs. McGreals sons, but it is lost. 

I worked on an idea for LA Comics back around 1971 in the L.A. Underground comics scene. They had three primary titles - LA Comics, Mickey Rat, and Mutants of Metropolis. Again, my writing was invited in and my art - feh. I wanted to be a cartoonist/comic book artist and did that kind of work for a while. Never made a splash and it was only my writing that anyone used. But I think my appreciation of Robert's art come my frustration of my own artist identity. 

But Mrs. McGreal was serious in her mentoring. A couple of afternoons when her sons were off doing things elsewhere, she called me over and we sat at the little table in her front room and she talked to be about writing. it wasn't profound, but it was the first time I had heard the ideas. And it stuck. Ideas like "have something of your own to say", and "make sure there is a reason we are seeing this day in your character's life, tell us why it is important that we know". The first time they are profound.

Because of Mrs. McGreal, I started focusing on writing and my English teachers noticed. They were encouraging. And I had been cartooning for the first school paper (Leuzinger in Lawndale, CA) but they started asking me to write. I did humor, I did reporting and started getting interested in journalism. I was part of the "underground press" scene from about 1966, when I was a thorn in the side of Inglewood High, to 1972, when I started with underground radio and Pacifica. From the newsroom at Pacifica I became on air satire performer and writer, and from there to radio drama as writer and director and long form prose, and from that to stage as playwright and director. And late in life (or late-er) it was words that brought me to role playing and writing for Jorune.

And that tone of Journalism has carried over to Jorune. I try to be a Reporter with a tiny warp where I can see that world and have to try to report it to the rest of this planet. And my subconscious works on it, so that I get fully digested chunks in my sleep, which come to through to me as dictation from another world, just be fore I wake. I do a dream journal with Evernote and recording on my iPhone, and most of what is coming out in Return to Jorune is a result of that process.

I guess Mrs. McGreal is to blame or be credited with all that. I have a real soft spot in my heart for her.

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