Rough Stuff #2

When I talked about the first issue, I asked for a different variety of artists. With Rough Stuff #2, I got my request.

The issue starts with a focus on Brian Apthorp, an artist I was unfamiliar with, but an obviously talented one. There are some beautiful pages from lesser-known books accompanied by Apthorp’s comments on his page construction and inkers. I found eye-opening his acknowledgement that his busy pages and floating panels needed good coloring to add separation. I’d like to know what, if anything, he’s working on now, but that information isn’t included. (The only time there’s a followup recommendation is when there’s another TwoMorrows publication to drive readers to. That’s understandable but incomplete.)

Rough Stuff #2 cover
Rough Stuff #2

Next comes a selection of pinups by Frank Brunner. I’d rather see sequential art pages, and the cheesecake take on Supergirl seemed unnecessarily salacious. There isn’t any commentary in this section, either, just simple descriptions of what we’re seeing.

The main interview this issue is with Paul Gulacy. He’s not an artist I’m personally interested in, because I lost interest in Catwoman once he started drawing it, with his emphasis on her as a body instead of a character and his ugly faces. The most interesting pieces are his pages from Jonah Hex #12, which he both drew and inked.

There’s a lot more art than text in this interview, some of which is more pinups. That’s in keeping with the editor’s viewpoint that the most important part of comics is the art. It makes for a quick-reading magazine, but an attractive one, and one that can be returned to if the reader views the art more than once.

(Funny typo: “I decided to make the slash page the cover.” I think they meant “splash page”, but it raised a vision of MUCH more interesting superhero comic art. I doubt Gulacy would ever draw it, though.)

The additional artist features cover Jerry Ordway (All-Star Squadron, Adventures of Superman), Alex Toth (character designs and Superman art, with commentary by editor Bob McLeod), and Matt Wagner (surprisingly, an artist new to McLeod until this feature).

This issue is superhero comic-heavy (expected from the TwoMorrows magazine line), but otherwise has a nice mix of generations and styles. I’d like to see even more variety, of course, because the diversity is educational in itself. It was a shame to see Wagner’s section filled with Batman and Green Arrow images when he’s done so much amazing work with his own characters.

This kind of magazine is a great way to compete with online journalism, since it’s more pleasurable to view all this art on paper.

McLeod has also created an online bonus section.

One Response to “Rough Stuff #2”

  1. Comics Worth Reading » Rough Stuff #3 Says:

    […] Also included this issue are fantasy art sketches by John Buscema, an informative article defining “breakdowns”, and sections similar to the Allred focus for Yanick Paquette, P. Craig Russell, and Lee Weeks. I talked about the previous issue here. […]




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