a surrealistic novel in collage

GAINING PERSPECTIVE ON GRAPHIC NARRATIVE: essential/ worthwhile/ personal favorite books regarding comics as an art, technique, style, or serve other significance

in short, i work at a book store and take great advantage of the ability to order whatever i want for the store without bearing the responsibility of paying for anything. i read a lot of books and texts about comics because i’m driven to make a graphic novel i’m proud of, these are just some of many i find noteworthy- b/c no one actually needs a bunch of courses or an art degree to obtain a broader upstanding of the illustrated narrative and subsequently grow as a comic artist.

  1. binky brown meets the holy virgin mary - justin green (duh. essential for contextualizing early crumb/ spiegelman/ a lot of work in the comix scene & era as well as serving as the ultimate ideal model for the autobiographical comic narrative.)
  2. graphic women: life narrative and contemporary comics - hilary l. chute (adore this one- its subjects and contents are the bible for women producing autobiographic comic content)
  3. panel discussions: design in sequential art storytelling - durwin s. talon (an essential and personal favorite and all around perfect book)
  4. comics versus art: comics in the art world - bart beaty
  5. the power of comics: history, form and culture - randy duncan
  6. cartooning: philosophy and practice - ivan brunetti
  7. german expressionist woodcuts - shane weller
  8. the art of the woodcut: masterworks from the 1920s - malcolm c. salaman
  9. wordless books: the original graphic novels - david a. berona
  10. graphic witness: four wordless graphic novels - masereel, ward, patri, and hyde (this and the former three are the best introduction to textless graphic novels/ expressionist woodcuts that i’ve come across. woodcut narratives have been so huge for me.)
  11. critical approaches to comics: theories and methods - randy duncan 
  12. underground classics: the transformation of comics into comix - james philip danky
  13. from staple guns to thumb tacks: flyer art from the 1982-1995 new orleans hardcore scene / punk is dead punk is everything (not a universal necessity but punk flyer art has always been a big inspiration and love of mine. it had visual command that lends well to comic structure)
  14. the visual language of comics: introduction to the structure and cognition of sequential images - neil cohn
  15. the art of possible! comics mainly without pictures - kenneth koch
  16. a hummet: a treated victorian novel - tom phillips 
  17. une semaine de bonte: a surrealistic novel in collage - max ernst (this and the former are some personal favorites and incredibly useful/ inspiring for incorporating collage elements into comic narrative)
  18. comics and sequential art: principles and practices - will eisner (any of eisner’s books are applicable here)
  19. the system of comics / comics and narration - thierry groensteen (all groensteen’s pieces on comics are so great.)
  20. how to draw noir comics: the art and technique of visual storytelling - shawn martinbrough
  21. comics and language: reimagining critical discourse on the form - hannah miodrag (a touch bloated and precociously academic but an insightful read nonetheless)
  22. best of comix book: when marvel comics went underground - stan lee
  23. panel one: comic book scripts by top writers - dwayne mcduffie
  24. AX volume 1: a collection of alternative manga - various authors (another personal favorite. but i think any comic artist can benefit from AX- it’s an amazing and diverse collection of highly stylized shorts that take really interesting and surreal narrative directions)
  25. vanishing point: perspective for comics from the ground up - jason cheeseman
  26. rebel visions: underground comix - patrick rosenkranz
  27. drawing words and writing pictures/ mastering comics - jessica abel & matt madden (yeah anything jessica abel touches is perfect)
  28. the graphic canon vol 1-3 - russ kick
  29. graphic subjects: critical essays on autobiography and graphic novels - michael a. chaney
  30. projections: comics and the history of twenty-first century storytelling - jared gardener
  31. lynd ward: six novels in woodcuts - lynd ward (..,,there’s nothing i can say about ward that would do him justice really. he was the master of the craft and i just consider his work so intrinsically important.)
  32. the language of comics: word and image - n.c. christopher couch
  33. the daniel clowes reader: a critical edition of ghost world and other stories, with essays, interviews, and annotations - daniel clowes 
  34. comics, comix, & graphic novels: a history of comic art -roger sabin (one of my favorites)
  35. a comics studies reader - jeet heer (an on point essay collective, way really impressed with the diversity of topics addressed)
  36. making comics: storytelling secrets of comics, manga, and graphic novels - scott mccloud
  37. love and rockets: the covers - los bros hernandez (the entire series is more ideal of course but l&r’s covers are engaging even in a secular context from their narrative)
  38. writing and illustrating the graphic novel: everything you need to know to create great work and get it published - daniel cooney
  39. 99 ways to tell a story: exercises in style - matt madden
  40. framed ink: drawing and composition for visual storytellers - marco mateu-mestre
  41. perspective! for comic book artists - david chelsea
  42. TO END ON A FUN NOTE ::: wampus, vol. 1 - franco frescura & luciano bernasconi ((the stupidly fun dated as hell french comic book that’s supposedly a cult classic but i’ve never encountered anyone else who’s actually read it so like, help me out here)