Monday, 30 January 2017

Overstreet's Fan #7: Indy Jam Cover

Overstreet's Fan #7: Indy Jam Variant (December 1995)
Heritage Auction ends 24 February 2017

Cover layouts and inks by Gerhard, pencils by Dave Sim (Cerebus) featuring:
Chris Ware (Acme Novelty Library)
Marc Hempel (Tug & Buster), Reed Waller (Omaha The Cat Dancer)
Peter Bagge (Buddy Bradley), Jim Woodring (Frank)
Paul Pope (THB), Drew Hayes (Poison Elves)
Shannon Wheeler (Too Much Coffee Man), Bernie Mireault (The Jam)
Jana Christy (Very Vicky), Evan Dorkin (Milk & Cheese)
Terry Moore (Strangers in Paradise)


Jeff Seiler said...

Why do I not have this, why have I never seen it before, and where can I get it?

And, Damian? Yes, I know I just opened up the door for a snarky (or, funny) remark or two, but...




Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

Jeff S.: I'm afraid I don't see the opportunity you do, so you must be more snarky than I. Your comment seems to stem from your genuine appreciation of Cerebus -- an appreciation that, despite our differences, I have never doubted and one that, despite your doubts, I share. I too think this is a pretty cool picture.

-- Damian

Tim Gagne said...

Jeff - check ebay.

Travis Pelkie said...

I, too, must have this!

Travis Pelkie said...

In other news:

number nine, number nine, number nine

(It's chronological, not ranked, btw)

Steve said...

Is this image from a print or something?

The magazine cover has some color to it and the 'cone of light' from the flashlight is much more clearly defined.

And there was a copy on eBay but it got snatched up recently, paltry $7 with postage.


Dave Sim said...

Not a WHOLE LOT to say about this one. 1995 so it was while the Spirits stops were going on. So, the weird transition period between "Dave Sim is great and/or okay" (then) and "Dave Sim is evil/doesn't exist" (ever since then). LONG TIME ago. Whoever was editing FAN figured I was the guy to do it because I was so highly respected in the Indy Community blah blah blah.

I came up with the idea and Gerhard roughed in the theatre seats with vanishing point, accurate measurements, etc. so everyone could see where their character(s) needed to go.

Used the same process we had used for the self-publishing jam prints: FedEx it to someone and include the name address and phone number of the next person it needed to go to, along with a master list of names, addresses and phone numbers with the Off-White House address last on the list so Gerhard could finish the piece when it came in. I roughed in the various characters in light pencil.

I remember Evan Dorkin being absolutely LIVID about the S-172 illustration board that I did it on. I did everything on S-172 illustration board. If you don't like it, you don't like it and Evan definitely didn't like it. I wonder how many others hated it as much as Evan did? It looks as if Paul Pope, Shannon Wheeler and Peter Bagge might have had trouble with it because of using diluted ink (which works better on fibrous art paper).

Reed Waller (OMAHA) and Drew Hayes (POISON ELVES) are both dead now.

I seem to remember that it needed to be done in an awful hurry, as in, we did our part, got it to FedEx, went and did a Spirits stop somewhere and it was there when we got back.

Steve - It looks as if it's either a scan from the original artwork or a full-sized photocopy of the original artwork.

I figured when I FedExed it to FAN that I would never see it again...and I was right!

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

I see from this and his comment on yesterday's post that Dave's menstrual cycle is coming around to self-pity again. That would be his business, if he didn't reliably try to rewrite history so it accords more with his mood. To correct the record so it's in line with, y'know, reality: There has never been a period when the comics field believed or acted as if Dave Sim did not exist. His isolation is self-imposed. He was not driven out of comics; he left. If he did and does not enjoy the popularity and acclaim that he feels is his due, that is another matter. I say this not to aggravate Jeff S. (and, of course, that's otherwise the only reason I ever post anything anywhere on the Web), but in Dave's own spirit of "reading into the record".

-- Damian

Tony Dunlop said...

Ah, Damian, let it go…it's like arguing about abortion: each side knows exactly what the other is going to say, and hasn't been persuaded for forty years, so why bother? We're here becuase we like Dave Sim's comics, and that should be enough.

Jeff Seiler said...

Damian? I reliably count on you to aggravate me, nearly daily.

Hugs and kisses, exes and ohs. Mwhaw!

Travis Pelkie said...

If you guys didn't fight, you wouldn't be able to have the make-up sex afterwards, though.


But I couldn't resist. I'm like that.

Play nice, boys.

Gary Boyarski said...

I've been following this site for a few years now.

Sometimes I chime in with a quip or comment, usually I don't.

I (like many other "silent" readers of this site) may not often, leave any comments, but I always read them after the articles, and it's become quite obvious that the lack of moderation on this message board is a detriment to the quality of the site itself.

I enjoy keeping up to date on the various Cerebus related projects going on, and checking out to comments is a big bonus, since Dave himself often posts his own commentary here, and I've been fortunate enough to have him even comment on my comments.

It's a nice touch.

Having the creator of something you're a fan of directly message you.

What’s been bothering me however is some of the snide, disrespectful things mentioned here. Particularly Damian’s sour attitude towards Dave.

“I see from this and his comment on yesterday's post that Dave's menstrual cycle is coming around to self-pity again. That would be his business, if he didn't reliably try to rewrite history so it accords more with his mood.” –Damian


This is how you refer to someone who slaved away the prime of his life writing and drawing the stories that you pertain to love so much? And when I say SLAVED AWAY, I mean it. Making comics is hard work, probably one of the hardest professions in the entire gamut of the entertainment industry. It’s not fun, it’s extremely rewarding, but it’s a hell of a grind. I invite anyone who’s ever bitched about Dave to go crank out a good 22 page comic book themselves. Then go and do 299 more of them. Maybe your attitude might improve.

I’m not a hardcore Dave Sim fanatic like Jeff, and I don’t agree with him on all of his political and world views, but I do respect the man, on what is essentially his website.

If you, (and here’s looking at you Damian) can’t manage the decency to do that, then you really don’t need to be here, souring the milk as it were, for the rest of the readers of this site.

A Moment Of Cerebus said...

Your point is well made. If it weren't for the interaction with Dave in the comments, I probably would have binned the AMOC comments section long ago. Most of the time I find them pretty tedious. However, Dave's comments to this post are a good example of the extra context he can give to the subject at hand. I can only suggest that you skip all the comments from anyone apart from Dave's.

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

Gary B.: Your "Go away, you're hurting my feelings," argument has been made against me before. I have been flattered that a couple of commenters have replied each time that they find my comments at least occasionally insightful or thought-provoking. I am aware also that some individuals wish this blog was "A Moment of Uncritical Adulation for Dave Sim", and find me completely surplus to requirements. While I am grateful to the former individuals, and dismissive of the latter, there is only one opinion that matters: blogmaster Tim W.'s. It's not Dave's website; it's Tim W.'s. If Tim W. asks me to never again post a comment on this blog, I shall never again post a comment on this blog.

(I will still read it, though. I have learned something from pretty much every commenter here, even Jeff S. Maybe I'll start my own blog for my replies: or something.)

I am aware that Dave (and Gerhard) worked very hard on Cerebus. There were periods where Dave very much enjoyed that hard work, and periods where he found it a real slog. Good for him, and who cares? It's interesting when considering Cerebus as historical artefact; it's irrelevant when evaluating Cerebus as a work of art. "Let's see you do better!" is a juvenile argument, the rhetorical equivalent of "I know you are, but what am I?"

But thank you for your comment, as it demonstrates a consistent problem with Cerebus and Dave: his most ardent defenders retard critical evaluation of the work and the creator by ruling out of bounds any statement other than unalloyed praise. It's like trying to talk about the Middle East with a conservative: "Of course legitimate criticism of Israel is allowed. And of course there is no legitimate criticism of Israel."

Here's a thesis: Dave Sim doesn't draw very well. Look at that image of Jaka holding the wine glass from the February 1 post. That's a Cerebus three-fingered hand (and not a good one) with an extra digit added, and the poor girl's lost all the bones from right shoulder to elbow. At least her head isn't two sizes too small for her body this time, and her eyes aren't four-fifths of the way up her head. I have plenty (plenty!) of examples.

But! Dave's lack of skill as a pure illustrator isn't the point. That's not what Cerebus is about. Objecting "Why didn't Dave learn to draw the human form better?" is like objecting "Why didn't Hemingway learn to use more adverbs?" Lord Julius captures Groucho in his stance and walk and the angle he holds his head; Julius doesn't require a Mort Drucker caricature, let alone a photorealistic rendering. But when a character does require a Mort Drucker caricature, there's Dave pulling that out of his toolbox. Visually, the success of Cerebus (where it succeeds) comes not from one technique (straight representational drawing) but from every technique (deadpan and caricature, exaggeration and stillness, animation and repeated images, interplay of image and lettering, and on ...).

So there's a two-paragraph argument for a critical approach to Cerebus. And it's far from the only approach. What's your reaction? Do you go, "Hmm, interesting; I never thought of that,"? Do you go, "Nah, he's way offbase; I couldn't disagree more," (or even "This guy's a bonehead!")? Or do you go, "La la la, I can't hear you, Dave is a great artist, and anyone who says otherwise is motivated by jealousy or malice and is probably also a feminist too"?

As long as the last view is allowed to dominate, Dave and Cerebus will remain the joke they have become. What does someone hearing about D&C for the first time learn? "He's a huge misogynist and seems to have some kind of cult-following of sycophants."

And that's regrettable.

-- Damian

Tony again said...

"Of course legitimate criticism of Israel is allowed. And of course there is no legitimate criticism of Israel."
If you think that's how conservatives talk about Israel, that means you don't consider Pat Buchanan a conservative...

Gary Boyarski said...

Sigh. Exactly the troll-like response I was expecting. But I had to try. Here's a question for the masses to ponder though... If Tim W allows Damian to voice his feelings and personal opinions on all things Cerebus related and otherwise here, unfettered, why doesn't Damian leave Dave to his own feelings, personal opinions and ideals?

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

Gary B.: I believe you wrote your comment and just hovered your mouse over "post" until I replied. So you'd be in my last group, then? Okay.

-- Damian

Gary Boyarski said...

Ha! Ha! Let's not even get into what "group" you're in buddy. :D

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

Gary B.: I'm sorry, I don't understand your point there. Please rephrase?

-- Damian

whc03grady said...

It would seem Gary doesn't understand what an internet troll is.

Dominick Grace said...

I think that sometimes Damian adds unnecessary negative comments (hi, Damian), but I think it is just as common--if not moreso--for the more . . . pro-Dave folk, shall we say . . . to engage in exactly the sort of overly-defensive responses that are hard not to see as what Damian calls them: sycophancy, adulation, whatever. The recent piling on of Carson over his critical remarks about Gerhard's art is a case in point. I saw the comments first, so when I went and read his entry, I was primed to see some pretty negative comments but ... pfffft! Nothing to see here. Ridiculous over-reaction to a practicing artist applying his eye to the work of another artist and making a negative judgement.

Damian is right. Dave's work and Cerebus deserve to be treated seriously, because the work is great comics work. It's not perfect comics work. (There is no such thing.) Serious attention pretty much requires critical evaluations that will fall outside of the uncritical praise/adulation spectrum. Uncritical admiration does a work no favours.

I love this site for a lot of reasons. Dave's regular presence is one. Its generally pro-Cerebus and pro-Dave position is another. But another is its openness to diverse views, both in the sorts of pieces it publishes (these skew positive but do include critical pieces, as well, such as some of Carson's reread entries) and in the fact that there are folk here who appreciate Cerebus but do so critically, rather than uncritically. This is a Dave Sim fan site, but it is not a Dave Sim sycophant site, and I truly hope it never becomes one.

Joe said...

I worked at FAN at the time and was one of the people involved in this, as well as the article that accompanied it. Was a big fan of Dave's at the time, and still am to this day.

Joe Rybandt
Executive Editor (and lookit me now!)
Dynamite Entertainment

Benn said...

I'm a former Editor of FAN, at the time of this piece I was a copy editor/staff writer and worked with Joe on this issue.

I'm more a fan of the alt.comics (whatever that means) than I am of the superhero genre. At the time, I was always trying to sneak coverage of alt/indie comics into our magazine. With the help of Joe, we were able to successfully pitch this piece and the accompanying article.

Dave was a total hero corralling the work, and coming up with the concept, executing much of the art with Gerhard, etc. I think the original was either donated to CBLDF or was raffled off for charity. I have photo copy framed on the wall of my store - and people constantly ask where it's from.
(sorry for the glare/shadow)

Benn Ray
Owner, Atomic Books
Baltimore, MD

Dave Sim said...

Damian - I try to write as honestly as I can about my reaction to anything Tim W chooses to post. That was definitely my reaction to that cover: Evan Dorkin being livid about the illustration board is always the first thing that I think of. Wish it was otherwise, because it's a gorgeous piece of work, Evan's part of it particularly: Milk & Cheese sitting in a pile of beer-can empties. And he really got the lighting right which is no easy task with the enforced limited density of line that he was using. Two weights of rapidograph, I think.

JOE RYBANDT - I was trying to remember your name. Yes! Thank you! It was a bit of a task getting it together and I did make the point of getting some Fantagraphics guys involved. Indy comics, not self-publishing! I give you high marks for going to bat for that variant cover. A VARIANT cover, for heaven's sake, with all the potential in the world for pouring a five pound bag of sugar into the gas tank of getting that issue through the printer. "This is NOT going to be 'Big Box Office."

Benn - nice to hear from you. "Where's that from?" indeed. I know I've only got one copy in CEREBUS ARCHIVE/PUBLICATIONS.

Dave Sim said...

Damian II - And I hope you'll at least admit that the Comments section didn't fill up with the cover contributors OBJECTING to my characterization of them. :)

When he was alive, Drew Hayes never forgave me for not giving POISON ELVES a "Cerebus Preview" and made a point of telling me that any time he saw me. Really, really bitter about it. I still have all the I, LUSIPHER issues he sent me in the Cerebus Archive. I just thought his stuff was too rough at the time. No one who's put out a dozen issues of a self-published title wants to hear that. So all of his "Dave Sim associations" were bad.

Ray Cornwall said...

I don't think Reed Waller is actually dead. Kate Worley, Omaha's creator, died in 2004.