There's a new book out from Red Panda Comics called Emberley Galaxy: A Tribute To Ed Emberley that I've got a 6-page comic strip in:Ed Emberley -- along with Commander Mark Kistler -- was the most inspiring and instructive drawing-teacher-from-afar I had as a kid. He made lots of wonderful 'how-to' books, including two of my favorites the Big Orange and the Big Purple Drawing Books.
Emberley uses a step-by-step approach in which drawings are 'constructed' through an assembly-line process. A skeleton is erected then layers of raw lines shapes and squiggles are added sequentially. Emberley's drawings are angular and cartoony, as well as 2-D and diagrammatic - evidence of their the process in which their built. There's no doubt this style has influenced how I "build" drawings, mechanically and aesthetically. Above: "Running Fox" from The Big Orange Drawing Book. Below: Recent cut-paper fox I made a pop-up card. Another thing that was always really appealing to me about Emberley's books was the sheer density of the drawings. The world he creates is really fun and crammed with weird details. But there was an underlying graphic logic to his world - it makes sense that an orange gorilla named Buttercup lives alongside a purple 70's conversion van. Above: "PICKUPS" from The Big Purple Drawing Book. Below: Poster I made for a pal's business.Given the drawing style - which resembles elaborate erector-set directions more than traditional art instruction - and the overall consistency of his creations, it seems appropriate that Emberley's most famous book and an upcoming documentary are entitled MAKE A WORLD. In my story, characters from Orangeland are gearing up for a big battle against their foes from Purpleville, and Emberley's motifs of construction and deconstruction become more than just teaching tools. Check out the book for the exciting conclusion!Above: excerpt from my Emberley Galaxy story. Below: excerpt from my comic IRONCLAD.Thanks for everything, Ed!