on covers

I want to make a quick observation about the development of Dave’s covers across the last 10 issues. In a period of about 18 months, he’s gone through a wide variety of styles and experiments, to varying success:

Issue #10 strikes me as a step forward. Maybe it’s the palette of secondary and tertiary colors, or the seemingly-difficult gradients of green and brown in the right-hand wall… It also helps that Dave has chosen a pose for Sophia where he can draw her confidently, without the awkward renderings that still plague his human characters in the interior.


As you can see from the cover “matrix” up top, Dave was playing with “design-y” covers since almost the very beginning, although at the moment he seems to have settled into a more conventional “complex action pose” motif.

Considering these covers are a rare opportunity to see Dave work in color, and they’re largely lost to the world that now encounters Cerebus in the phone books (which even have B&W covers until halfway through the series), I hope we can continue to address them as we go, watching the evolution of Dave’s design instincts as well as the growth of printing technology.

16 Responses to “on covers”

  1. 1 Matthew J. Brady April 16, 2009 at 11:22 am

    Just in case you haven’t seen it already, I would highly recommend Stephen Frug’s series of posts on the covers of Cerebus. He does some criticism of the series as a whole, but a lot of it is just focused on the cover art, an aspect of the series that doesn’t get discussed as often. Of course, most of what he talks about doesn’t come until later than you’ve gotten here, so I’m sure you’ll do some similar discussion when you get past the “early, funny” stuff. But it’s definitely some great writing; I loved reading what he had to say.

  2. 2 Dr. Fleming April 21, 2009 at 7:42 am

    Call me impatient, but: awesome blog, and dying to read the next post to complement my own Cerebus reading.

  3. 3 Scottnormington April 30, 2009 at 5:01 am

    Yeah, I was really enjoying this site. What happened to the weekly posts?

  4. 4 Laura Hudson April 30, 2009 at 8:39 am

    Leigh? It’s your turn.

  5. 5 mattrod May 5, 2009 at 10:51 pm

    It was cute to watch them think they were gonna make it 300 issues. And get indignant when people questioned them too. No, I kid. I actually think blogging about 300 issues is even more taxing than producing them. Armchair psychology is TIRING…

  6. 6 Dr. Fleming May 6, 2009 at 2:54 am

    Uh, Laura, why don’t you follow until he catches up?

  7. 7 Scottnormington May 11, 2009 at 12:05 pm

    Yeah, you guys are actually forcing me to do work at work!

  8. 8 Sean May 15, 2009 at 9:37 am

    So… more than a month now. Are you guys officially done?

  9. 9 rev'D May 18, 2009 at 7:37 am

    As a former reader of CEREBUS & obviously Failed Male, I’ve been avidly interested in seeing where you kids went with this experiment. I thought the little gray misanthrope & Sim were brilliant and was dismayed to watch the series’ slow-mo metafictional crawl up its own arse in the wake of ‘Reads’.

    Please keep going. I know it’s a hell of a slog, but it’s been informative as all get-out to see it from a p.o.v. other than that of the Acolyte or Jaded Fan– I’m especially appreciative of the focus on Sim’s evolution as a craftsman. That tends to get overlooked in the general rush to canonize him as king of the self-pitying pricks. He was a big influence on me when I first became interested in doing comics, and I still believe there’s a great deal to be gleaned from his work… once it’s divorced from the annoying bully pulpit aspect.

    Maybe you could alternate frustration with fun & do a parallel study of Carla Speed McNeil’s FINDER to date? Fewer issues & less angst!

  10. 10 Frank May 25, 2009 at 12:04 pm

    Hey, you guys forgot to post again. Why not scale the posts back if they’re taking too long?

  11. 11 Scottnormington May 26, 2009 at 6:28 am

    At this point it’s been almost 2 months since they posted about an actual issue. It’s too bad, I was really enjoying their posts. Oh well, it was nice while it lasted.

  12. 12 mantichore May 27, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    Ah, well, too bad. I expected them at least to reach the introduction of Lord Julius…

  13. 13 Dr. Fleming June 1, 2009 at 9:35 am

    Anyone knows any project similar to this one but that has already completed the analysis of the 300 issues?

  14. 14 Morrissey June 2, 2009 at 9:59 am

    I know it’s over, and it never really began, but in my heart it was so real.

  15. 15 Leigh Walton June 25, 2009 at 1:23 am

    Take heart, me lads! There’s life in the old horse yet!

  1. 1 “If Cerebus isn’t careful, he’s going to start a whole new religion”: Leigh on #11 « Cerebus: A Diablog Trackback on June 25, 2009 at 1:19 am

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