Caleb Orecchio here with Kyle Baker’s excellent cartooning on the 1990’s adaption of Dick Tracy, plus other news!
I’m out on the road visiting my sister in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania (aka Amish Country) so lots of horse pulling buggy alongside hasty drivers speedily swerving around the innocent carriage, narrowly avoiding oncoming traffic. Other than that, this weekend was essentially stress free, full of familial love and camaraderie and void of any care of the world; but I’m going back to Pittsburgh today, count up to thirty. Round that horn and ride that train, gonna thread up.
Lo and behold, in the brisk departure for my sister’s, I forgot to bring the various incarnations of Mister Miracle Frank loaned me to look at and possibly write about. Lo! there will be a day when my wits and memory will work faster than my feet and CR-V, but until that day comes we are stuck with my forgetfulness. Be encouraged, however, that lately I’ve been carrying around Kyle Baker’s 1990 Dick Tracy series. It’s interesting because it more or less came out around the same time as Why I Hate Saturn, and was probably read by more people at the time than what has become Baker’s auteur calling card.
Baker’s Dick Tracy has been the subject of my drawing studies lately. I really appreciate Baker’s strong, brisk lines that let the colors breathe. The forms are rendered in a Moebius-esque Upon a Star style contours that please the eyes with their simplicity and accuracy. It’s Moebius by way of Sergio Aragonés by way of Chester Gould, the real hero here.
The colors themselves are very limited, they’re beautiful. Baker’s Dick Tracy is a great study of what one can achieve in a limited amount of time with a limited resources. The book very nearly lives up to the beautiful simplicity of Gould’s strips. Have you seen the original art for Gould’s Sundays? They look amazing. Obviously the drawings are fantastic, but the simple layouts speak volumes, particularly when compared to most other, more muddled (layout-wise) comic pages you find at a cartoon museum. Baker’s layouts more or less stick to a 6 to 9-panel layout, and with that, keep a really steady pace. The sequencing of images is natural and makes one feel that Baker’s inner metronome went uninterrupted.
I highly recommend to the aspiring cartoonist (or, for that matter, the passive reader) to look for Kyle Baker’s fantastic Dick Tracy books. Baker’s lively lines are infectious, and the images teem with an energy that can be hard to harness in a comic book adaption starring Warren Beatty.
if you don’t know, now you know
- Frank Santoro is going to Italy for Comicon in Naples.
- Jaime Hernandez is the latest cartoonist guest on Virtual Memories.
- I personally think the new Nancy is kind of funny. Really, anything other than Guy Gilchrist comics looks great to me.
- Keren Katz is the latest guest on Process Party.
Suzy and Cecil – 4-23-2018 – by Sally Ingraham