ABOVE – CARL BARKS “THOR” RIFF
GRAY MORROW “LOIS LANE” MINI-SERIES FROM THE 80s
I am swamped, true believers, with work – so just some diagramming this week from your faithful servant. Dan told me I could take the week off but I figured I oughta keep the candle burning. It’s always harder I think to get the motor going writing again after I take time off. So, here goes.
I was playing around with diagramming some Barks pages. Wanted to see if his clean and simple layouts lined up. I wasn’t surprised when they did. Whether he used a grid or not to compose is besides the point. Just look how it all lines up. It sings.
Then I thought who probably doesn’t line up? Someone who has really busy, complicated pages, I thought. Gray Morrow came to mind. So I found a “busy” book he did about Lois Lane. A two issue mini-series from DC in like, ’86? I forget. Anyways, I figured I would find his pages a little “off key”.
Well, surprise, surprise, surprise. Look how the figures line up with the lines on the grid template. It’s a busy layout – but it’s so insanely “on” that I wonder if Morrow used a template to compose. Either that or he’s got a really killer eye to piece this spread together. Look at how many words there are! That’s some good design. I think anyways.
Do most of you true believers out there know that Gray Morrow did layouts for the famous 1960s Spider-Man animated cartoon? I think his layouts on those has been seared into my brain. There’s where my real affinity for crazy colors and landscapes comes from, I swear. He’s pretty great at playing around with space and simple angles in those cartoons. Alot of it is stock movements and backgrounds. But a lot of the action is Morrow. Anyways. Looking at the above spread, to me, he’s just really good at balancing a lot of information and making it visually appealing. Solid.
So, just trying to show that clean and easy layouts like the Barks page above can use the same “harmonies” as busy and difficult pages like Morrow’s.
Over and out.