Story of Lee volume 3

I’ve officially started writing the script for volume three of our book with NBM

The Story of Lee.

Let’s see what happens to Matt and Lee. Will they stay together or split? Will Lee stay in Britain or go back to Hong Kong?  How about Uncle Jun?

Who knows?

No one, yet.

Not even me!

Meanwhile, there are a few copies of the special Story of Lee banded set left. Not many as its sold well.

This is a good deal, with volume 1 and volume 2 of the book packaged together with a specially printed band (or ‘obi’ as they called in Japan). And its $4 cheaper to buy this banded set of the two volumes.

Get your copy here:

http://www.nbmpub.com/comicslit/storyoflee/storyofllee_home.html

SOL banded july 2017

 

Dutch elections

It’s time to vote again in The Netherlands – not for government this time, but for a Comic Artist Laureate (Stripmaker des Vaderlands). And I am one of the four nominees!

In October the result will be announced – until then, I’m campaigning like crazy, shunning no means, including bribery and blatant sexism. Vote for me because I have boobs!

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All kidding aside: I do think I am a good candidate for the job – which would entail being the ambassador of Dutch comics for three years, starting up all kinds of initiatives that will put comics in the picture, and of course drawing comics about important national events.

To practise a bit, I recently drew this comic about the fallout of the Dutch elections for government – the formation of a cabinet is still going on, and here’s a bit of information about it.

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Creating Characters For PRIDE.

When creating character designs for PRIDE OF THE DECENT MAN, I tried to take inspiration from life. This was after all, a narrative grounded in reality, albeit a fictional one – and there is inspiration everywhere. Why do some people catch your eye more than others? It could be what clothes they wear, or a certain shape of their nose, or the way they walk. There are truly interesting and, frankly sometimes odd looking people lurking everywhere, if you’re paying attention. Thinking about these elements in terms of characters can lead to more interesting and full backstories.

Those same features that look odd or distinctive in real life translate very well to comic books. Somehow the simple comic iconograghy and spare ink lines render them less severe. I’m not sure why, exactly. I suppose one extreme example would be a Dick Tracy comic strip villian. They don’t look too threatening when drawn in a tiny comic panel with india ink, but take one of those designs, to scale, and put in on a person in real life? People would be running and screaming.

Here are quick sketches my two main characters, Andrew and Julie, in a few step by step process shots.

For more information on PRIDE OF THE DECENT MAN, click here.

 

Andy sketch

Julie sketch

Pride Of The Decent Man: Casting Call

If you’re a cartoonist around my age, chances are you also grew up reading Wizard Magazine. Their ‘top ten hottest’ writers and artists lists were always fun to see for us aspiring comic creators. Another memorable regular feature was their fantasy casting of possible comic book movies, ‘Casting Call.’ Of course, no one thought at the time we’d be in a deluge of comics-based movies and TV shows twenty years later.

So…In the spirit of Wizard Magazine, and a few totally 90’s magazine layout choices, here are a few casting choices I’ve made for a PRIDE OF THE DECENT MAN film! With suggestions from friends and these new things called Google and IMDB, I think we’ve got some strong choices here. Realistically, any one of the salaries from these actors would eclipse the budget of a film of this size, but hey, this is a fantasy after all. Call me, Hollywood.

Oh, and to find out more about Pride Of The Decent Man, my new graphic novel from NBM, go here!

PRIDE CASTING CALL

Henry David Thoreau At 200: Part Two

Today marks the bicentennial of the birth of Henry David Thoreau.  To celebrate his ongoing legacy as an essayist, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, and historian, we’ve put together ten digital postcards for you to share across social media.

Each one utilizes artwork by Maximilien Le Roy from our book, Thoreau: A Sublime Life and features a quote from Thoreau.

Here are the second five postcards (the first five can be found here):

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thoreautake27

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Inspiring PRIDE

 

“Where did the inspiration for PRIDE OF THE DECENT MAN come from?”

I’ve gotten this question quite a bit since I started working on it.

I would say it came primarily out of wanting to tell a small scale, human story. Ask a lot of cartoonists why they make the books they make, and you’ll hear the same answer over and over – they make the books they would like to see in the world. They make the books they want to read.

Many of my favorite films have the element of basic human struggles – relationships, work, poverty… so it’s not surprising to me that the story I’ve ended up telling contained some of these elements.

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I love the film American Beauty, and A lesser known independent film called Wendy And Lucy. Both feature small town life, and characters who are desperately trying to find their place in the world.

My favorite novels and comics also share these qualities. Catcher In The Rye, David Boring, Perks Of Being A Wallfower…

PRIDE OF THE DECENT MAN is simply my first longform attempt to tell a story/comic I’d want to read.

For information on how to order PRIDE, go here.

PRIDE OF THE DECENT MAN is also in the Previews catalog in your favorite local comic shop this month. Tell them to order with code JUL172009.

Read The Foreword to ‘Thoreau, A Sublime Life’

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In recognition of the bicentennial of the birth of Henry David Thoreau, we’ve decided to share the forword of our book, Thoreau, A Sublime Life, written by it’s author M. Le Roy.

For more information about the book, as well as digital postcards inspired by Thoreau, click NBMPub.com/Thoreau.

 

Foreword

The name Henry David Thoreau is known throughout the world. His renown is probably strongest in political and activist circles. For good reason: Henry David Thoreau is the father figure of civil disobedience – an individual and occasionally collective endeavor that seeks to stand up to illegitimate or authoritarian power (or decree, law, etc.) by refusing to consent to it. More concretely, Thoreau opposed slavery and the Mexican-American War. Even so, his name suffers from regrettable pre-conceptions. We always hear his name under the descriptors pacifist and non-violent. He is portrayed as a peaceful, even inoffensive thinker. Really? A dreamer who had it in him to try to bring down the state? Any attentive examination of his work, of his work’s underbelly, and of his biography refutes these attributions of comfort.

Thoreau was a philosopher, a writer, and a poet for whom ideas were meaningless before taking shape in concrete, everyday experience. He could not have been bothered to mince words and abstractions for a brood of intellectuals and specialists. His works invite the reader to live a daily philosophical life and not to carve out concepts simply to fill libraries. This philosophical life is for whomever wishes to latch onto it. And for those humble enough to accept his ideas, we can only hope that they will continue to share them with new readers. In April 2010, I went to the United States—specifically to Massachusetts—to learn about where he lived and to start writing the work which you now hold in your hands. A.Dan—who with his training as a biologist and ethologist fits very well with Thoreau’s interest in nature—then undertook the task of bringing Thoreau’s tale to life.

Thoreau’s texts have had a profound influence on many of the greatest disobeyers of our time. Mahatma Gandhi discovered Thoreau’s work in prison, then accepted him as his mentor; Martin Luther King claimed to have given life to the philosopher’s teachings in his work with African-Americans against racial segregation. From ecologists and environmentalists to anti-globalists and anarchists, many hard-headed and restive people found weapons against oppression and injustice in the writing and life of this American born in 1817.

Was Thoreau an anarchist? Scholars from all over the world have identified him as such for decades. Like others before him, Thoreau rose up against the constraints and the limitations of his time. In his writing, he hoisted his flag: that of the marginalized and of the road less traveled.

The biographical forum can be an inspiration to readers when relating the way of life of an individual like Thoreau which followed closely his thinking. When viewed through a philosophical, political, or artistic lens, this form can provide a foothold to understand his thought process, still very much alive in our times. Biography does not replace direct knowledge found in the work, but it proposes a theoretical life raft trained on practical horizons. From this, Thoreau sustains his subversive potency.  Against the accelerated mercantilization of societies and of the men who form them, against productivism and unbridled growth, against the reign of an oligarchy in a democratic field, against the stranglehold financial capital and finance have on independence and the sovereignty of the masses, against renewed imperialist expeditions with total impunity, his work still holds strong meaning.

It is no longer enough to be indignant.

M. Le Roy