Book/Magazine Covers (All) · Book/Magazine Covers (Jones) · Heads Up! · I'm Age · Idyl · Illustration Art · Jeffrey "Jeff" Catherine Jones

Heads Up: IDYL – I’M AGE by Jeffrey Jones

Late to the party again… but life (and laziness!) gets in the way… anyway… last year, near the end of the summer, Donald M. Grant published the first-ever all-in-one collection of two comic strips by Jeffrey Jones: Idyl, which originally ran in National Lampoon in the 1970s, and I’m Age, which ran in Heavy Metal in the early 1980s.

I received my two hardcover copies of the collection in the autumn of 2015 — I ordered from Amazon.com as neither the hardcover nor the softcover edition was unavailable through Amazon.ca, although I suppose I could have ordered directly from the publisher, which would have netted me a complimentary copy of Jones’s cartoon book, It’s Garbage Coming — and now I’m here to let you know that I have one complaint and one concern about the book.

My complaint is that Grant has failed to include one of the I’m Age strips in the new collection and instead of going back to press to correct the error has been encouraging buyers to download a JPEG of the strip via a link on the order page, print it off at home, and slip it into the book, which I’ve done, of course, though I’m not happy about it. The overall number of strips is small. Was it really such a difficult task to create a complete, master list of strips and proofread the collection accordingly? Mistakes happen, sure. And yes, yes, going back to press to correct a publisher’s error (vs. a printer’s error) would have been prohibitively expensive. But COME ON!!!

My concern is that the introductory and other text in the collection completely ignores Jones’s struggle, in later years, to claim a more authentic identity for herself as a woman. No mention, even, of the name change from Jeffrey Jones to Jeffrey Catherine Jones. Now, Jeffrey Catherine Jones was, by all accounts, perfectly content to let her old friends continue to refer to her as Jeffrey, and of course, the major collection of her art published during her lifetime, with her participation, after she began her transition, bore the title, Jeffrey Jones: A Life in Art. Still, it seems wrong to me for Jones’s “friends” to act, now (or then), as though Jeffrey *Catherine* Jones never existed! The omission is especially egregious in George Pratt’s “Afterword,” which recounts an outing that was filmed, in part, by Maria Paz Cabardo for her documentary, Better Things: The Life and Choices of Jeffrey Catherine Jones. If you’ve seen the footage, you know very well what I’m talking about!

In fact, I think a strong case could be made that, far from being irrelevant to the strips, Jones’s ongoing gender-identity struggle was central to them. Pity that neither Jones’s publisher nor her friends were ready, willing, or able to imagine the possibility!

Anyway, I do love the work. And I do recommend the book, because the sad fact is, it’s the only game in town if you want to have two of Jones’s three major comic strips available in your non-virtual library in a convenient format at a reasonable cost.

Bill Sienkiewicz · Book/Magazine Covers (All) · Connections · Illustration Art · J. C. Leyendecker · Look Here

Connections: Leyendecker and Sienkiewicz

Old news, I know… but anyway… it’s the style that’s important here:

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An homage done the right way by Sienkiewicz!

(If you know of a closer match, please feel free to post a link in the comments. I don’t have time to search… )

Book/Magazine Covers (All) · Connections · Illustration Art · J. C. Leyendecker · Maxfield Parrish

Connections: Leyendecker (1918) and Pound (1980)

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BONUS IMAGE (added 21 January 2016):

Heads Up!

Heads Up: THE BUS 2 by Paul Kirchner

Received notice directly from Tanibis the other day — hey, look at me, kids! I’m in the loop! — that a second hardcover volume of Paul Kirchner’s the bus strips (56 pages, black and white) will be available in November of this year. Since I obviously haven’t seen a copy yet — although I have, of course, pre-ordered — here’s the publisher’s description, cut and pasted from Amazon.ca:

During the years 1974 to 1986, after working as an assistant to Wally Wood, Paul Kirchner created several comic strips such as Dope Rider for High Times magazine and the bus for Heavy Metal. In 2012, French publishing house Tanibis published an anthology of the bus strips that was nominated at the Angoulême International comics festival, proving that even a 30-year old public transportation vehicle can take part in a Grand Prix.

In 2013, Paul Kirchner surprised commuters when he decided to start working again on the bus. He fixed the old vehicle up, took it out of the garage and called its iconic passenger in the white overcoat back on duty, waiting to be taken on new, exotic adventures. The bus’ unpredictable personality causes him to mimic classic pop culture icons such as King-Kong or Steve Martin while in turn analyzing or teleporting his passenger. And that’s only when it’s not cheating on him with other commuters.

Kirchner’s new ideas are on par with the original strips, proving that his creativity didn’t end with the 80’s. The crazy cartoon logic of the original strips is still present, and wackiness is the norm. Some details, such as the so-called “smart” phones or the passengers’ looks, root the stories in the 21st century, but Paul Kirchner’s universe retains a timeless vintage aesthetic that blends eras, lending these new stories a hint of nostalgia.

The bus 2 will be published in hardcover horizontal format identical to the previous collection published in 2012.

Back in that twilight dimension he calls home, it is rumored that Paul Kirchner is at work on new material for his psychedelic western Dope Rider. After all it seems that the bus’ passenger is not the only one who gets caught occasionally in strange time warps…

Parts of the bus 2 material may have been previously published in magazines in North America and Europe.

Enjoy the ride, bus fans…

Book/Magazine Covers (All) · Illustration Art · Look Here · Steele Savage

Look Here: Two editions of Heinlein’s RED PLANET

Here’s a cover scan of a paperback picked at random from the piles in the room that serves as my study/studio. The artist here is Steele Savage, known to longtime readers here at RCN for his illustrations for Catharine F. Sellew’s Adventures with the Giants:

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The Ace paperback edition of Heinlein’s Red Planet, 71140, does not include a publication date, but according to ISFDB, the book was published in 1971. Now, according to Wikipedia, Steele Savage was born in 1898 and died in 1970. So on the face of it, it would seem that that Heinlein cover was among the last illustration assignments that Savage ever worked on. Nice, clean, precise work for a 70-something year old artist!

And a nice touch that the design of the “outdoor costumes” of the colonists in Savage’s illustration is more or less faithful to Clifford Geary’s cover and illustrations for the 1949 first-edition hardcover of Red Planet. Here, for the sake of comparison, is a scan of the front cover of my copy, which I rescued from a library discard sale a number of years ago:

Red Planet was one of the first two science-fiction novels I ever read (the other was Heinlein’s Rocket Ship Galileo, which I didn’t like anywhere near as much), and I read it in the exact hardcover edition that you see above. But it’s not that I am so ancient. It’s that our rural school library at the time — a tiny room lined with shelves with a table in the middle, and no librarian — was very badly out of date. As I recall, it was shortly after I read those two Heinlein novels that our school miraculously received boxes of new paperbacks in a variety of genres that were shelved at the back of the various classrooms. That was a big deal!

Album Covers · Illustration Art · Look Here · Robert Foster

Look Here: Another Gor cover with art by Robert Foster…

I’ve just added a fourth cover to last year’s post, Look Here: The first three Gor novels, with cover art by Robert Foster, but I suppose I might as well post it here, too:

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Hey, it’s a hand-coloured photomontage!

Heads Up! · Richard Corben

Heads Up: Corben Art Sale, 12 September 2015

On Saturday 12 September 2015 at 12:00 noon CST, ten pages of original comic art by Richard Corben will go on sale via the “Sales” page on the artist’s official website.

All ten of the pages in the September sale are from the graphic novel, The House on the Borderland (2000), adapted by Simon Revelstroke and Richard Corben from the novel by William Hope Hodgson.

And according to the Corben website, all of the pages are drawn with Sharpie and Pigma pens on 11 x 17 inch Strathmore paper.

The small scans that are on the Corben website right now are intended for “viewing only.” Prices will be posted when the sale goes live on Saturday 12 September 2015 at noon CST, at which point the first person to complete the PayPal shopping cart for each page will receive that page.

Book/Magazine Covers (All) · Illustration Art · Look Here

Look Here: Pynchon’s V. with cover art by the great unknown

A couple of weeks of silence, and now here I am, back in the control room of RCN’s online headquarters, poised to post a gallery of one paperback cover, scanned by me mere minutes ago from my personal copy of Thomas Pynchon’s V. Earlier today, I searched high and low online for information about the Bantam Modern Classic edition V. in an attempt to determine if anyone out there knows who produced the uncredited, unsigned cover art, with no luck, none, nothing, zilch, but whatever… I’m going to post it anyway… and then perhaps I’ll offer a copy of the scan to ThomasPynchon.com, where the Bantam Modern Classic edition of the book is NOT currently listed:

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If anyone out there knows for sure who the artist is here — by itself, the generic 60s illustration style points in any number of directions! — please feel free to post the information in the comments below.

P.S. The hot spot to the left of the figure is not glare from the glossy cover stock; rather, it’s a feature of the illustration.