Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Eric Powell Illustrates Huck Finn

CBR spoke to Eric Powell about his upcoming work illustrating Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Here’s an excerpt:
I see. You're adding illustrations to the novel, rather than adapting it as a comic. Why take this approach?
Well, that's what was suggested to me by Chris. If he had said a comic, I would have just said no. Too much work. My schedule is pretty busy with "The Goon."
How many illustrations are included? Is it every other page, only select scenes, etc.? And are there spot illustrations or are they all full-page?
Around 20. These are full page drawings.
How do you choose which scenes to illustrate, and how do you determine how much story to pack into each single image?
I just picked out scenes that really resonated to me. You really can't put too much into a book illustration. You have to pick a moment in time to freeze frame. If you try to put in every little nuance, you lose the power of the image in minutia.
From a character design standpoint, how do you go about working through what Huck and Jim look like, how they move, etc.?
Being a young southern kid in the late '70s, I'm familiar with the look of poor, dirty children. I think I can do a decent representation of Huck. But I'm going more for establishing atmosphere than to painstakingly point out how the characters should look. I want to evoke the feeling of a riverbank rather than draw a historically accurate riverboat that shows off how good I use photo reference.

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