Sunday, 6 January 2013

Drawing The Black Tower

Cerebus #71 (February 1985)
Art by Dave Sim & Gerhard
(from an interview in Feature #4, 1997)
When I started, the nice thing was; Cerebus had just become pope, so there was quite a shift - and Dave was looking for a shift - in the feel of the book. This allowed me to do things in pretty much my own way. The hotel where Cerebus was hold up was a new location. I just tried to keep some consistency with the previous issues, the look and feel of the Regency Hotel for instance. Shortly after I started, the Black Tower, the mountain that the upper city sits on, became a central figure in the book, so that was something I had to deal with. Other than that it was pretty well up to me what appeared in the background of the book. Dave and I will discuss things. When Dave's got something specific in mind he'll sketch it out or he'll just write "window" or "door", or something, but I have a lot of leeway... I don't think it's a coincidence that the Black Tower didn't become a central character until Dave didn't have to draw it any more.

Gerhard provided background art to Dave Sim's cast of Cerebus characters between issue #65 (August 1984) and #300 (March 2004) - contributing to over 4,700 pages of comic art, as well as numerous Cerebus covers and illustrations. Keep up to date on all of Gerhard's current projects at his blog and website, including details of his new book, The Wish.

1 comment:

Tony Dunlop said...

To me, the early Gerhard issues of "Church and State" are nothing short of majestic. This page is a case in point. It was especially striking since the few issues before he came on board were almost completely background-free.