Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Drunk Attic

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.

Another notebook that we haven't seen in two years: Dave Sim's notebook #22. Last seen in July of 2015's A Creator Named Dave, this notebook had 71 page scanned and had material for Cerebus #186 through 201. Since we've not seen the cover for this notebook yet, here we go:

Notebook #22, front cover
Another Hilroy? Purple? This isn't the same cover from last week is it? No, it isn't.

One of the pages from this notebook that jumped out at me was page 65:

Notebook #22, page 65
Some word balloons are all that is on the page. I thought they looked vaguely familiar and found the ones on the left of the page on page 8 of Cerebus #201 and the ones on the right on page 9:

Cerebus #201, page 8 and 9 word balloons
The one in the notebook is pretty close to the one on the finished pages, but there are a few differences.


Travis Pelkie said...

Yow! That's good stuff.

Margaret, can you tell, was the lettering in the notebook all pencils, or mostly/all pen (which is what it kind of looks like to me), or a mix?

That's amazing too how close the notebook version appears to the final version with very few erasures or guide lines. Dave could just friggin' letter like that!

Paul Slade said...

I'd happily read a whole comic book done in this style. Handled by a master like Dave, the balloons' appearance and phonetic spelling would tell you all you needed to know about the characters involved, I think. There'd be no need to draw them too.

Margaret said...

Hey Travis - Just seeing your comment now. The majority of what is in the notebooks is pen. Very little pencils. Some marker / sharpie. Some of what looks like india ink. Not much color (other than blue ink).

It never ceases to amaze me how many times I see some thumbnails / sketches in the notebooks and they are pretty dang close to the finished page. 'Specially in Going Home with F. Stop.