Anybody who’s been following Intense World for a while has probably noticed I’ve taken a hiatus for a few months this summer. I spent the time working on painting–some examples of which I’ll be posting here soon. As “research” for this story I steeped myself in war comics from my childhood and tried my best to gain an understanding of how particular artists–especially Joe Kubert–were able to fascinate me. So I whiled away the past few months copying their work, trying to get inside their heads and make sense of the expressiveness of their style. Somewhere along the line, I feel my own style began to increasingly emerge. At the same time, I found myself, especially as I drew the slain Japanese soldiers here, becoming emotionally overwhelmed with sadness and disgust for warfare. Unfortunately I’ve taken to drawing stories about the most horrific human activity and you can’t do that for a long period of time without it taking a toll on you. For various reasons then, I’ve distanced myself from this story for a couple months. Now I’m finally recharged, focused, and ready to continue.
I’m not sure what these stories I’m posting here add up to–as an artist you spend a great deal of time waiting for your work to somehow validate all the hopes you have for yourself. In the beginning of the summer I was impatient to be seen, to be read, to be understood. I wrote to a bunch of cartoonists I admired, all of whom ignored me. I thought about submitting the stories to left-wing sites but most of them don’t do comics, especially not a subjective, hybrid memoir-history continuity strip like this that is overtly political without being a topical political cartoon. If anybody can think of a place where that peculiar creature fits in other than this very site, you let me know. In the meantime I’m going to keep on working with the themes and styles that have always haunted me.