I'll always love Daft Punk! Their new release (Random Access Memories) is good, but by far their best album was Discovery in 2001. My absolute favorite not only because of the danceable music, but they animated the entire album! Interstella 5555. It's the main inspiration for the Aer Head graphic novel I'm slowlllllyyyy working on.
Many animations, comics, tv shows, movies, places, people, and other things stirred around in my brain to form AER HEAD. My main inspiration is Daft Punk's animated music video of their Discovery album - "Interstella 5555: The 5tory of the 5ecret 5tar 5ystem."
I already loved Daft Punk's music and was totally amazed when I saw this anime-like music video in 2003. I can't even begin to describe it's awesomeness, so watch the animation here. I love the style of the characters and how colorful everything is! The film was produced by Daft Punk, Cédric Hervet and Emmanuel de Buretel along with Toei Animation, under the supervision of Leiji Matsumoto. Interstella 5555 © Toei Animation 2003.
Another influence is Colleen Doran's "A Distant Soil" graphic novel series. Isn't that picture so beautiful and sparkly? I LOVE Doran's work! I'm mainly inspired by her vivid color schemes, fluid coloring style, and collage-like page compositions, where panels can be any shape and meld into one another. I even got to meet Doran one time at last year's New York Comic Con! I totally geeked out :) A Distant Soil is published by Donning/Starblaze © Colleen Doran 1989.
Another visual inspiration for AER HEAD is the light of late afternoon summertime. Not quite sunset yet, but like 5 in the afternoon. When it's super hot out, the sun is blazing and casts a golden light over everything, reducing objects to wavy silhouettes. This is why I love to use so much yellow and shadows in AER HEAD! It definitely gives that summertime feel.
Also, I took this picture looking at Coney Island from Brighton Beach. That old Parachute Drop ride even influenced some buildings on page 1 of AER HEAD. That structure looks so sci-fi! Doesn't it look like a space ship that just landed there?
AER HEAD's story is greatly influenced by Lost, or the first few seasons anyway. I got busy with college and work and stopped watching all TV, and just never got back to the series. However, I was very intrigued by what I did see early in the series. For those who don't know, Lost is a sci-fi drama of plane-wrecked survivors' mysterious encounters on an island in the middle of nowhere. I loved all the bizarre things that would seemingly happen without explanation! Like the random polar bear on the tropical island and the mysterious hatch. The writers of that show were excellent story tellers that mastered the art of suspense. In terms of AER HEAD, let's just say that things are going to get weird. Very weird :) Lost © ABC Studios and Touchstone Television 2004-2010.
Those are the main AER HEAD inspirations, but there are many others like outer space, manga creators Rumiko Takahashi and Osamu Tezuka, the movie Inception, and even Scooby Doo! And I already mentioned San Diego's influence in my second post.
Oh, there is another major influence... but I can't reveal it yet because it may take away some of the surprise later on ;)
This week I've been drawing page 5, which you'll see next week!
It's part of your balanced breakfast! So pages 1 and 2 are "splash pages," where most of the page is taken up by a single image. Page 3's layout begins my more regular use of comic panels to tell a story. Although they aren't the typical square panels you see in other comics - I love to play with compositions of all kinds. And I'm not a morning person, but at least my alarm clock (phone) doesn't usually try to attack me. Usually. OH although sometimes in bed in the morning my arm ends up over my head somehow and it goes numb and I wake up to something hitting my face: "OW! What's that? It's AN ARM! AHH! It's MY ARM!" (end pointless drama).
In other exciting news, I'm in an art show THIS SATURDAY 11/13/10! The show is called “How Great Thou Art” and will feature live performances as well as other fine artists like myself. I'll exhibit the first 3 AER HEAD pages and a special AER HEAD illustration. If you're in the NYC area, please stop by! It's from 6pm to 9pm at St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral School House, on 32 Prince Street (Between Mott & Mulberry Streets). Here's the facebook event. I'm super excited - I haven't been in a show in quite some time!