Caleb Orecchio here on the last day of 2018 with Parallel Lives by Olivier Schrauwen
Parallel Lives by Olivier Schrauwen
Olivier Schrauwen lives way up there with kings and queens of our medium. I have a lot to say about the author and his new book, but brevity may stop me from going too far over my head so in brevity I will write.
Schrauwen has set a hammock between the rigid and the naturalistic. Schrauwen’s drawing veers towards the rigid often. His use of ruled lines and strict character models nearly teeter into stone. Yet, it is his natural, loose free-hand that brings balance to the force. His wonderful, thin pencil lines themselves serve to soften that rigidity as well. O how I love that pencil that leaves smudges though they are hardly noticeable in direct sunlight, but nonetheless make looking all the more pleasurable.
The feature story of Parallel Lives, “Space Bodies,” is undeniably inspired by Moebius’ Gardens of Aedena (concept-wise), and is probably his most visually striking comic to date. His colors are masterful and beautiful. You’ve scarcely seen blue until you have seen it in this comic. The future he illustrates is completely enviable if only for want to walk around in it. Schrauwen fleshes out worlds that seem impossible, and yet inviting to live in. The whole book is practically beckoning one to jump in.
Olivier Schrauwen can not be more on the up and up right now. He is steam-rolling over the lame and sickly cartoonists and driving himself to the center of the universe.