Would you like the chance to win a copy of Persia Blues vol. 2, signed by both myself and artist Brent Bowman? What if I told you it will also contain an original sketch by Brent? And that there are absolutely no strings attached?
Well, here’s your chance:
Have you ever wondered how the writers and artists of the books you read sound like? Of course not. But that didn’t stop us from sitting down with John Orlando for his PVDcast podcast!
Brent Bowman and I talk about Persia Blues vol. 2, our process for collaborating together, sources of inspiration, what took so long on my part to complete the script for the second book, and much more.
Head on over to the home of the PVDcast to hear our episode.
“I’m joined on this edition of the PVDcast by the creative team behind Persia Blues Vol. 2: Love & War. Dara Naraghi and Brent Bowman are the two guys responsible for this critically acclaimed graphic novel. (You may recall that Dara joined me back on episode 17 to discuss the first installment of Persia Blues). We talk about their creative collaboration, their influences, their relationship with publisher, NBM and many other topics. A must listen for any aspiring creative people!”
And while you’re there, be sure to check out John’s archive of great interviews with creative types of all sorts, from writers and artists to wrestlers and movie critics.
And may 2016 be good to you and yours.
Belt Magazine is an online publication with a focus on life and culture in the “rust belt.” Since 2013, they’ve featured essays, longform journalism, op-eds, and reviews of works by creators from the industrial Midwest. And they just ran a nice article on Persia Blues, entitled Graphically Persian in Ohio: Novel Adventures from Columbus Artists.
Here’s a snippet of what they had to say about Brent Bowman’s art in the book:
This combination noir and penny-dreadful background is apparent in the pages of Persia Blues, which alternates visual styles: ancient Persia is dark and moody, as if the story is coming to us from a great distance full of smudged shadow and deep recesses of sky; modern Iran is primarily depicted in line drawings with brightly lit, page-white backgrounds, as if we are watching reality TV.
I like the author’s theory as to the central mystery of the book’s dual settings. I won’t say whether he’s on the right track or not, but give it a read and see if you agree. Or do you have your own theories?
I, along with co-creator and artist Brent Bowman, were honored to have Persia Blues vol. 1 win the 2014 S.P.A.C.E. Prize for best graphic novel at the Small Press & Alternative Comics Expo. And I’m even happier to announce that the long-awaited second volume of the trilogy is hitting the shelves in a week or so!
In case you hadn’t had a chance to check out the solicitations, here’s what you can expect in volume 2:
Minoo Shirazi’s mysterious double life continues to unfold across 2,000 years of history in the second installment of the Persia Blues series.
In the fantastical world of ancient Persia, the shock of discovering a piece of her past is overshadowed by the imminent invasion of Ahriman’s armies. Only by finding the empire’s champion, Rostam, can she hope to turn back the tide of evil.
While in the modern world, Minoo’s life unfolds in Iran and America – where she has recently begun her graduate studies – as she deals with her stern father, dying mother, lost brother, and new American boyfriend. Across myths and modern realities, we delve deeper into the truth of Minoo’s life.
Here are a few pages of art:
For a longer preview, as well as reviews and interviews, please drop by the official Persia Blues website.
Here’s a lyrical and beautiful essay about a road trip in Iran, by Bijan Roghanchi.
‘Hum of soft rubber over asphalt’: on the road in Iran
“At Kandovan, a village built directly into the mountains, I made a confession, the type you can make only to someone on the road. It was a confession born in the bond that comes from hours of silence and the hum of soft rubber over asphalt. And then there were no more roads left except the one we had come down and it was time to go back home.”
I can honestly say that this was one of the first comic books to truly and completely blow my mind:
Written by Pat Mills, and drawn by Kevin O’Neill, published in 1987 by Marvel’s Epic line of creator-owned comics. Leave it to the Brits to push the envelope of satire and parody.
Our first page this week is via Diversions of the Groovy Kind, and features the other Buscema brother, Sal. This is from Sub-Mariner #25 (February 1970), with Sal Buscema on pencils:
And here’s the page from the Way Back machine, AKA my previous blog circa 2011:
Here’s this week’s splash page:
This splash depicts the return of Marvel’s oddball “non-team,” The Defenders. It’s by artist Richard Case, inked by Randy Emberlin. Case is best known for his collaboration with Grant Morrison on that writer’s revamp of Doom Patrol over at DC, but he’s done a fair bit of work at various publishers. This page is from Doctor Strange #3, published by Marvel Comics, March 1989.
Hey, wait a minute, is that a ferret? Or just a weasel?
A cult classic of the 80s black and white indie comics boom:
Cover art by Michael Zulli, published by Aardvark One International, 1986.
OK, here we go with another couple of pages to try your hand at. There really are no rules, other than if you have the book that these pages are from, please refrain from guessing.
The first page for this week:
And page 2, from my old Ferret Press blog, way back in 2005:
This past October, Columbus’ own Shadowbox Live – the sketch comedy, short play, and live music troupe – presented “The Tenshu,” a unique production featuring live martial arts, magic, giant puppets and supernatural experiences, accompanied by an original rock score. The show was a collaboration between Japanese choreographer/director Hiromi Sakamoto and New York Times Best Selling author of the Kabuki graphic novels, David Mack.
Accompanying the production was a gallery show featuring original comic book art from several local creators, including my artistic partner in crime, Brent Bowman. Several of Brent’s pages and paintings from volume 1 of Persia Blues were prominently on display:
We hope to make this the first of several more gallery shows.
If you are interested in purchasing any of the original art from the book, drop me a line via the Contact link on this site.
Let’s kick off this edition of Splash Wednesday with a classic John Byrne page (inked by Terry Austin), from Uncanny X-Men #139.
And from a post on March, 2011 on my old blog, here’s this week’s “classic” splash page:
“Over the years, Mike Mignola has worked with quite a handful of talented artists on Hellboy short stories and side projects, which is where this week’s page comes from:
This page is from Ghost/Hellboy #2, with pencils by Scott Benefiel, and inks by Jasen Rodriguez. Published by Dark Horse Comics, June 1996. Ghost was one of the longer-running titles in DH’s attempt at a superhero universe. This was a 2-issue crossover.”