Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Book 2, Reimagined Art: Another Roadside Attraction by Tom Robbins

So, as you may have seen in the last Another Roadside Attraction post, I had a lot of elements I could have worked with for this cover. I eventually came to the conclusion that I needed to keep it very simple and create a design that would jump out at you from across the bookstore. So, the two elements I chose to focus on were... hot dogs and Jesus. Didn't expect that now did you?

A little back story: The book is about a hippy couple, John Paul and Amanda, who open up a hot dog stand along the highway in Washington State named "Captain Kendrick's Memorial Hot Dog Wildlife Preserve".  At the same time, through a series of misadventures, their friend Plucky Purcell gets wrapped up in a militant Catholic secret society and comes into possession of the corpse of Jesus Christ... which he steals and brings back to the roadside attraction. 

So, in honor of Captain Kendrick's, I started off with a basic picture of a hot dog which I myself took and then ate (the hot dog, not the picture).

Then I imported this picture with an older painting of Jesus on the cross into Adobe Illustrator. 

I traced both photos with VERY bright colors, cleaned them up a bit and removed elements. To top it all off and to make the site a little more sacrilegious, Jesus is now nailed to a giant hot dog.

Throw in a radial gradient background and some wispy, neon-like type and we have a very bright, very offensive cover:

Keep in mind, this is my very first cover exclusively using Adobe Illustrator (so be kind). The floor is now open for comments, questions, suggestions, and critiques.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

CHECK IT OUT: Tales of Rocky Point Park

In the vein of classic comics like House of Mystery, Tales from the Crypt, and other early horror comics comes the newest (and, in my case, most local) offering: TALES OF ROCKY POINT PARKIf you're not from Rhode Island or have not seen the wonderful film You Must Be This Tall, let me let Wikipedia tell you about Rocky Point:

The Rocky Point Amusement Park was a highly popular landmark on the Narragansett Bay side of Warwick, Rhode Island. It operated from the late 1840s until its close in 1995. The park filed for bankruptcy a year later in 1996.

Brief enough for you?! Anywho, the short and skinny is that Rocky Point was an old amusement park that gave generations of Rhode Islanders years of enjoyment and fond memories.

Now, comic artist Jason Mayoh brings us the dark underbelly of this joyous place. Each issue starts with actual illustrated history of the park, particularly each individual ride or attraction.  After that,  things get creepy.

Mayoh takes the creepier elements of the actual histories and expounds on them with horrifying results. Issue #1 deals with the House of Horrors and it's awful life-like viking statue. Issue #2 talks about the Skyliner, a tram starting in the heart of the park and leading to a fairly creepy forest on top of a large hill. Oh, and did I mention UNDEAD MONKEYS!
The comic book nerd in me loves the whole  concept of the book but the graphic designer loves the supplementary material. At the end of each issue, Mayoh creates various pieces of "evidence" in the forms of letters and newspaper articles to back up his tales of terror. They're so well done, at first I thought they were real articles!

Anyway, whether your a fan of Rocky Point or love horror stories, PICK THESE COMICS UP! You will not be disappointed. Issues #1 and #2 are available for purchase at their website or local comic shops like The Time Capsule and Wildtime Comics.