Chip Kidd, Chris Ware, and Charles Burns talking comics (Taken with Instagram at Brattle Theatre)
Things of note:
- Charles Burns keeps several binders full of found images and collected photos for inspiration. Also cites going on Tumblr for photo references (illustrators…they’re just like us!)
- He also has a collection of artsy photography he did from the late 70s
- Chris Ware’s favorite inspirational work of art is this Mary Cassatt etching
- If Chip Kidd could go back in time to any period he would go back to 1961 and steal all the Batman comics in mint condition so he could have them now
- Charles Burns seems to be as obsessed with Tintin as much as Chip Kidd is with Batman
- Chris Ware hates public speaking yet continues to participate in panels in front of large audiences
- Chip Kidd has a new Batman comic he wrote/art directed and of course there is a villain named Exacto who is an architecture critic
- Chris Ware’s new book is crazy
Overall I am really glad that comics and illustration discussion panels like these are starting to happen more frequently. It’s one thing to see an artist do book signings at some festival or convention, but ultimately they’re really just there to sell their books so the whole thing ends up more of a fanboy experience for both parties.
This panel, along with the recent comics discussion at the University of Chicago, felt like Inside The Actors Studio but for illustrators and designers. (Sidenote: which as a concept is actually kinda awesome and I wish was an actual TV show).
Suddenly I’m seeing sketches and thumbnails of their process, what goes through their head when they’re doing this stuff, what inspires them, how they think, how they act, all the things that would get you interested in the artist as a person, and not just their work.
Which is something that doesn’t even really ever happen, unless events like these are coordinated and artists are willing to participate in letting a room full of strangers and fans into their head for a few hours.
So I guess thanks to whoever coordinated this, as well as the other panel in Chicago. For $5.00 I got to witness three brilliant and passionate creatives at the top of their game give me a glimpse into their thought process which honestly did more for me than the 4 years I spent in “art school” (and the several thousands of dollars in student loans I owe to do so).