Joe Alterio's blog on illustration, comix, design, animation, and other bouts of total awesomeness.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Sketchblog 7/28/06

Like a lot of dudes my age, I'm totally in love with the old UPA animation aesthetic, both in major releases like Eyvind Earle backgrounds for Disney's Sleeping Beauty, and in small releases like Ward Kimball's super weird stuff. Below is a couple of samples of an ad layout that was eventually dropped in favor of something else I did, but I'm proud of the look just the same. The direction was 'Holly Golightly-1950's-girl-about town', and I think it's pretty successful.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Waters Red

I just completed the new music video for Argo. It's a ComicCast (or Animatic), it's on iTunes, it's a kickass song, and it's kinda awesome (he says humbly). Let me know what you think.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

To diversify, or not to diversify.

I hate to sound like a stuffed shift, but it occurs to me that the question of whether Clickwheel “should” diversify bears un uncanny resemblance to certain arguments that have stalked the very nature of artistic creation for years. The issue at hand is whether Clickwheel, promoted as a comics-on-Ipod service, should start to include more genres that,
while all relate to comics in some way, push the limits, or at least blur the lines, of what a ‘comics’ site is all about. Some disclosure here is in order: Colin White’s comix-with-a-soundtrack, and my music video for Argo, essentially made from a comic on the inside of their album cover, are the likely instigators of the current debate.

What are we doing here? Why are we involved in this? I think I can safely speak for a great majority of us when I say we’re all interested in the promotion of comics as an art form, and where it can go from here. ‘Purist’ is a loose term. If any of us were REAL purists, we’d still be at home, furiously inking on Bristol board and looking in vain for a publisher to print our comics on four color spot litho. We’d also be looking at being paid around 20¢ page, after printing costs were taken into account.

There is a rank hypocrisy that tends among the comics community , one that is think can be found in anything community that is involved is something really cool. It can be very insular and protectionist, cracking wise at it’s own snarky jokes, furiously posting like mad to private bulletin boards, and converging at conventions to geek-speak to each other (see you next week!). And then, occasionally, the community will raise it’s collective fists, and demand to be taken seriously, outraged that the term ‘comic book’ is still derogatory, and pissed that there’s only about 5 guys who actually get reviewed in the NYT Review of Books. I mean, come on. What do we expect?

My argument is that we have been speaking to ourselves for far too long, and it’s time to ride the current wave of comic book iconism in our more mainstream media sources to a real permanent seat at the table. We deserve this for all the guys and gals that came before, and for all the ones will come later. I think mobile comics are the venue for this.
And if incorporating other art forms, like music, sound design, and limited animation will ease that transition, I think we should go for it.

There’s a certain tragic beauty in the analog tools and methods of the past: I myself still shoot with a 1963 Nikon F series, and when I get the chance, I develop, too. The process is what I love, and that type of photography will never die. But photography had to adapt to keep up. Like all art forms, our chosen method of expression must adapt to our times, and that means getting more fans, and integrating and competing with the rest of the new media out there. For better or worse, and with apologies to Marshall McLuhan, we need a little hot media to attract new viewers. If we want a static, still frame to compete against YouTube, we might need a little background music.

Itunes can be our garden of Eden, if we want it to. Let’s do this, and introduce to rest of the world how cool what we do is.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

"Narwhal off the Starboard side!"

My good friend and fellow fake-wood-panelling enthusiast Tim Lillis has just revamped his design site, and it's rad: he does a lot of stuff for Make Magazine, among others, so you know. He's good people. And he engineers a mean slinky.

Check out the link at the right, or click here.

Mmmmm. Fake wood paneling.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Sketchblog - 7/9/06

Stuff done today with some Paul Desmond on in the background.

"Divin' Bigfoot"? Don't ask me, I dunno.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

What be this RSS? Some kind of sea beast?

A few cool things:

I've RSS enabled The Basic Virus site, and added a link to this blog. I've also started to put the robot stuff on Clickwheel, which should hopefully get some more readers into it....this is all just a build up to the next big piece of news...

I've been invited to speak at the San Diego Comic-Con, arguably, the biggest, baddest collection of nerds like me on the planet, with a nice smaterring of Hollywood and NYC publishing people too, so it's a huge deal.

From the site:

"2:00-3:00 Clickwheel: Comics for Your iPod— It seems iPods are everywhere these days. They may be known for playing tunes, but did you know you can get comics for your iPod as well? Clickwheel’s Tim Demeter (Reckless Life), Chad Diez (Today: The Comic), and Joe Alterio (365) are a few of the creators pushing comics from the racks to the iTunes music store, and beyond. Join them for a discussion about the possibilities of comics for handheld media, digital delivery, and where to find comics for your shiny new gadgets. Room 1A"

If you get a chance or live in the area, or you're one of the loyal nerds that makes the annual trek, be sure to stop by and see me blabber on.


Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Episode 1!

Just a quick note to let you, my loyal readers, in a little seceret: Episdoe 1 is up at the Czech it out and let me know what you think. Considering I'lla ctually only be 'launching' before the ComicCOn at the end of this month, there's stil some time for changes. And check back soon, I'll be adding more stuff and polishing as it gets closer to Go Time.