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review 2016-12-21 00:00
Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art
Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art - Scott McCloud Holy Toledo! This book was fantastic. The now-widespread idea that comics are capable of deep expression and not just a low form of entertainment comes from Understanding Comics. The format has come a long way in 25 years, but McCloud's work is still an essential read for any comics, graphic novel, sequential art fan. He breaks the medium down and explains the mechanics of its storytelling capabilities frame by frame.

I never studied art theory, so many of the concepts here were completely new to me. It was informative and reading this felt like having a personal lesson. That may not sound like its for everyone, but it should be. Comics are simple medium for a reader to understand, but only when its done correctly and McCloud offers a great deal of advice on how to go about creating your own comics and makes no rules that he doesn't encourage a new artist to break.

There's a lot of bombast and bright, expressive earnestness and hope which invites eyerolling and (legitimate) complaints, but I don't care. I enjoyed the hell out of it.
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review 2016-12-13 18:08
The Sculptor (Graphic Novel) by Scott McCloud
The Sculptor - Scott McCloud

David Smith is giving his life for his art―literally. Thanks to a deal with Death, the young sculptor gets his childhood wish: to sculpt anything he can imagine with his bare hands. But now that he only has 200 days to live, deciding what to create is harder than he thought, and discovering the love of his life at the 11th hour isn't making it any easier!

This is a story of desire taken to the edge of reason and beyond; of the frantic, clumsy dance steps of young love; and a gorgeous, street-level portrait of the world's greatest city. It's about the small, warm, human moments of everyday life…and the great surging forces that lie just under the surface. Scott McCloud wrote the book on how comics work; now he vaults into great fiction with a breathtaking, funny, and unforgettable new work.





Sculptor David is going through a rough patch with his art.... in that he can't seem to bring himself to make any, or if he does it comes out a big ol' dud. In the middle of a booze soaked mope-fest one day, he meets up with his great uncle Harry whom he hasn't seen in ages. Then he remembers -- Harry's been dead for ages! So it comes out that "Harry" is actually Death using Harry's body. Death makes David a deal: By sunrise the next day, anything David's mind can dream up he will be able to carve with his bare hands. Yep, sculpting solid stone with his bare hands like it's butter. But only for 200 days. On the 200th day, David's life will end. David, honestly believing that he would do literally anything for his art quickly agrees. What he never plans on is meeting his perfectly imperfect love, Meg.

So what can I say in my review here. I was feeling some slight shades of Faust in this story!

I've read a number of the lower rated reviews out of curiosity, have seen the rants about Meg being too much of the cliche "manic pixie dream girl", the plot being on the predictable side, all that. I even agree, to a point. For me though, this book is one of those cases in which I see the flaws and I just don't care. Yes, I did find elements of the story predictable. Yes, Meg's character was a bit much at times. AND YET I can comfortably dismiss all that because this book seemed to so perfectly meet my emotional needs. It was the right book for the right mood at the right time. It lingered in my mind for DAYS... something that almost never happens with my graphic novel reading... and I love graphic novels! I just tend to enjoy them in the moment and then largely forget them. Not this one. This one sucked me in like a beautifully shot film. In fact I hope there are plans to translate this to the big screen one day because I see plenty of potential for cinematic amazingness here!



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review 2016-01-28 05:45
The Sculptor by Scott McCloud
The Sculptor - Scott McCloud

This has been a graphic novel that has been getting a lot of buzz lately so I wanted to see what it was about for myself. I finally got around to seeing it and, let me tell you, it was a very good read. 


I love how McCloud (great name, btw) told a story about life. Real life! Through a graphic novel using a lot of fantasy elements. I actually don't want to say much about the story itself because a book like this... it's an experience and if I tell you anything about the story and how it was executed, well, it would cheapen that experience. So go into this knowing that this is a story about life and how not everything goes according to plan. (Vague, I know... but trust me. You don't want this spoiled.)


The artwork in this is lovely. It's not overly complex but it's not plain either. There's a right balance to the characters's facial expressions and the setting. I really think the art is beautiful.


You really should give this book a read, especially if you are going through a "questioning" period in your life. I believe it might be a comfort or an assistance to those going through a rough time right now. McCloud did an amazing job on this graphic novel and I think a lot of people will appreciate all the hard work he put into making this story. I know I do.

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review 2015-09-22 00:00
The Sculptor
The Sculptor - Scott McCloud What a great story. Awesome illustrations and surprisingly deep messages and mores. Impressed with my first Scott McCloud graphic novel. :)
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review 2015-08-13 00:00
The Sculptor
The Sculptor - Scott McCloud The art of the book is marvelous. The drawings are pretty. I like how the author puts several panels together as a tapestry, which captures the character's reaction so vividly. The layers of emphasis is also very good: some irrelevant details are fading yet the most important ones remain. In sum, the author's technique to demonstrate is perfect, as we can expect since he made his fame by teaching how to draw comics.

But I cannot say the story is very compelling. For example, how did David fall in love with Meg? It feels just suddenly, David is saying "I love you, Meg" out of nowhere. David's struggle between death and loving Meg is so vividly presented in the last half of the book. But the start where everything begins is not so compelling.

I would say the first 200 pages make me wanna drop this book. But after Meg admitted her love for David, this book becomes very intense and a great joy to read!
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