Riff Raff Riff Raff


This week we’re taking a break from the Layout Workbook series and going to look ahead to the future Color Workbook series.

I’ve written a bit on color in comics over at Comics Comics. Please check these posts out if you’re not familiar with my thoughts on color. Here’s a run down of my color articles – or articles that had a good riff on color in them –  from Comics Comics:

Frank Santoro and Dan Nadel at PictureBox Clubhouse

Brecht Evens interview

Bruce Timm color guides

Lynn Varley fan club newsletter

Klaus Janson colors

Dave Sim/Neal Adams on color

Pacific Comics color process

Steve Oliff  interview

Jamie Hewllet

Gary Panter colors

Brendan McCarthy colors

Kevin Nowlan colors

Matt Wagner colors

Dave Sim on Richard Corben’s color process

Misc. color riffs

Tom K colors

Brian Chippendale colors

The idea with the Color Workbook series will be to look at color theory in general and color in comics in particular. The best book on color that I have in my library is Color: a workshop for artists and designers by David Hornung. Yes, that’s the same David Hornung who appeared in Rubber Blanket #3. This book was given to me by David Mazzucchelli and it’s become an invaluable reference book for me. I think it’s far easier to digest and work through than Josef Albers’ famous book on color, Interaction with Color.

I will be making all the Color Workbook exercises something one can do in a notebook with colored pencils, markers, or paint. So, for those following along and who would like to do the workbook exercises – please gather together a decent set of colored pencils and Prismacolor cool grey markers. We’re going to do some value studies by working in black and white and I think these markers are useful for understanding percentages.



The first Pittsburgh Biennial at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is opening next month, and I am lucky enough to be included. Dan Byers, the associate curator of contemporary art here, gave me a 26-foot wall and two 16-foot walls  – for paintings and drawings –  in the gorgeous 19th century museum gallery. I practically grew up in this museum and the idea of representing a local voice in the museum is thrilling for me. And the museum is letting me create a newsprint comic which people can take away for free from the exhibition.

It’s a 16-page full-color 11 x 17-inch tabloid newspaper comic that’s about Pittsburgh and probably the closest I’ve come to doing an autobiographical strip. I’m super excited about the way it came out on the press. We printed it locally here in Pittsburgh at Typecraft Press and I got to go down for a press check. I did a dance when they showed me the proofs. I love the way newsprint soaks up colors and mutes them on the gray paper. That’s comics to me – that transformation from my desk to this giant web press. There’s something about newsprint that really pleases me as a comics reader.  I’ve never gone to see a newsprint webpress in action so ’twas truly a thrill. Heartfelt thanks to Jim Rugg for all his help with the process of getting it from my desk to the press. I do not know if or when or how the comic will be available to folks who do not attend the exhibition. But it’s free at the show and the show is up for the summer here is Pittsburgh. Opening June 16th.


Comments are closed.