Saturday 2 December 2006


Springboarding from some recent comments: very pleased that Marcus Gipps, author of the review I linked to, didn't take offence at my proposed 'It's not a graphic novel, Percy' campaign. On the contrary, he regretted missing the opportunity to nab the original sketch. Tobey Cook got that (any sketches I do for the blog I'll be mailing off to the first person who puts their hand up, so you have to look in regularly). Hayley Campbell (we always give her the full two names. Not sure how that came about. Funny thing is that most people who meet her and don't know this is a long tradition going back to her birth , find themselves doing it too) has demanded to be the first to sport the slogan on a t-shirt. Hey, you know, I'm not copyrighting this thing. If somebody beats her to it, i'll put the photo up here. I'm not even promoting anything, except chaos of course.
* * *
Aaron White's comment to yesterday's post reminded me of something that fell out of a library book I once borrowed: several photos, I think four or five, of a young girl in various poses, obviously enjoying just being herself. Maybe I should have tried to trace her (or whoever was cherishing her photos) through the library but this was in a period when i was up to my neck in problems and wasn't thinking clearly. Or at least, not about other people's problems. Considering it later, the photos looked like they were taken in the 1960s, twenty years earlier, and they came to haunt me. When I needed a model for the doomed Avril Allard in Alan Moore's The Birth Caul, I remembered these images and, using them, I was able to recreate an authentic-seeming girl from their various angles and viewpoints. Perhaps my sympathetic sadness for somebody's loss of these lovely photos helped me to create the required tragic note.
"His sister Avril, 5 years older, wears black tights and a perfume called Midnight Passion. Smugly notices but does not acknowledge the mute worship of her brother's friends.

"is sat astride her boyfriend's motorcyle, when it hits the rear end of a lorry, 'doing the ton' along the Weedon Road."

"playground Mythology, our only truth, maintains that she is cut in two on impact, torso there to one side of the road, her perfect legs upon the other.""And still conscious, but gone to a beatific place beyond the pain. And smiling. An immaculate teen angel, dying there upon the glittering macadam when we loved her."

The Birth Caul was collected earlier this year along with Snakes and Ladders and My long interview with Alan Moore in The Disease of Language published in a neat hardcover from Knockabout, with design work by my pal Evans, who just about fell out with me over the whole thing. My pals, whatcha gonna do with them?



Blogger spacedlaw said...

Beautiful drawings, Eddie, full of soul as if the girl had left her ghost in the pages of that book...

2 December 2006 at 12:01:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Eddie Campbell said...

Thanks, Nathalie


2 December 2006 at 20:20:00 GMT-5  
Blogger spacedlaw said...

Actually this bit where you recall having found pictures in a library books triggered an idea for a story.
So thanks for sharing those pictures (your works are hard to get by in Italy) and thanks for the idea.

3 December 2006 at 12:40:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Leigh Walton said...

That volume was my first look at either of the two pieces, and it immediately became one of my all-time favorites. It's a book I plan on returning to again and again.

Cheers to Knockabout and Top Shelf, and I hope it's done well for them and you.

3 December 2006 at 16:30:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Eddie Campbell said...

thanks, Leigh and Nathalie

3 December 2006 at 17:23:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Andrew Hawthorn said...

Please to have a "Percy" Shirt, thanks.

On the other hand, you could simply do a strip about "It's not a Graphic Novel" Percy, the lovable scamp who can't tell words from pictures.

3 December 2006 at 19:42:00 GMT-5  

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