Tiny Pages Made of Ashes 9/20/2013: Beach Girls and Baroque BuildingsA comic review article by: Geoffrey Lapid, Jason Sacks
Tiny Pages Made of Ashes is Comics Bulletin's small press review column
It's a simple subversion of the "Beach Party" format and romance genre trappings that instead sets up their relationship as more of an eager student/reluctant sensei thing. Their bond comes in their desire to shed their similar trappings and to realize their true ambitions of living a surfer's life unfettered by stuffy office life, or in Hank's case, dependence on the tourist economy. They're both romantics in the literary sense, striving for a true connection between themselves and nature through the purity of surfing.
- Geoffrey Lapid
Buy Beach Girls on the Retrofit Comics website.
I love minicomics that create their own unique world and invite the reader to visit. Nathaniel Taylor's minis Mr. Fiz and Simon Ragbon both take place in a kind of storybook world that could only live inside Taylor's head. These quiet, sometimes surreal, always lovingly rendered worlds are filled with an immense depth of detail - almost a Where's Waldo sense of space and complexity - that can't help but to drag the reader into the worlds that Taylor creates.
These aren't narratives as much as they are tone poems and exercises in style. One page is an bold chiaroscuro of black and white, Sin City style, the next a deeply detailed tableau of some impossibly complex baroque building. The fun in a book like this comes from allowing the pages and the artist's creativity wash over you, enjoying the detailed street scenes and strange city architecture as you flip the pages, never knowing what will come next.
There's a lot of creativity on display here, and it's intriguing to consider where Taylor's style may evolve as he creates longer and more coherent narratives. This is part of what minicomics are about: a chance to get an early glimpse at an artist who shows real promise of doing great comics work.
Order Mr Fiz from Nathaniel Taylor's website.