Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Characters of Melmoth

A few years ago I scanned all of Dave Sim's notebooks. He had filled 36 notebooks during the years he created the monthly Cerebus series, covering issues #20 to 300, plus the other side items -- like the Epic stories, posters and prints, convention speeches etc. A total of 3,281 notebook pages detailing his creative process. I never really got the time to study the notebooks when I had them. Just did a quick look, scanned them in and sent them back to Dave as soon as possible. So this regular column is a chance for me to look through those scans and highlight some of the more interesting pages.

The first and only time so far we've seen images from Dave's notebook #16, it was way back in August 2014 in "Melmoth and Tiny Thumbnails".  Notebook #16 covers issues #141 to 149 and is another Hilroy notebook which the covers says had eighty pages. Only 47 pages were scanned and there were 19 blank pages and it was missing 14 pages. There were some copies of pages from notebook #15 glued to different pages (yes, I scanned those in).

Since this week has been a crazy busy week for me, I'm just going to show you some of the full page sketches Dave did in this notebook.

First we see Dino, owner of Dino's Cafe, on page #3:

Notebook #16, page 3
You can see through to page 4 that there is another sketch of Dino. Basically Dave recreated the scene between Dino and Cerebus where Cerebus offers Dino a gold coin for a room to sleep in and food for the rest of his life.

Here is Cerebus agreeing to Dino's question of Cerebus' offer, seen on page 17:

Notebook #16, page 17
Then a bit later on page 33 we see Doris, the friendly replacement to Janice's angry waitressing style.

Notebook #16, page 33
What you can barely see on the other side is a rough layout for the cover to issue #144.


Tony Dunlop said...

I absolutely love this feature. Thanks, Margaret and Tim.

Jason Winter said...

It's interesting how detailed some of these "sketches" end up being. They could almost slot into the finished book. Another great entry!

A Moment Of Cerebus said...

"I absolutely love this feature."

Me too. Thanks Margaret!

Jeff Seiler said...

Me three! Even if you didn't get an "above and beyond the call of duty" medal during your military career (I'll bet you did), you certainly deserve one for this project!

Margaret said...

Awww, shucks guys. Thanks. I'm glad you're enjoying the column.

Barry Deutsch said...

I'm late on this, but thank you so much for this post! I love seeing Dave's character design sketches.

@Chris_DFS said...

Dino was a great caricature, got to see the real guy at the Kitchener Spirits stop.