Tag Archives: art book

Another Book No One Will Buy

Over the weekend, I was finalizing the design for a book I’m compiling. This is the second time I published a book and god bless Canada for letting citizens publish books and have free ISBNs, essentially encouraging everyone to be publishers. If I had known this when I was in high school, I would’ve published my horrible comic books with my buddy Duane. And now that I’m much older, I’m publishing my horrible art.

주말 동안에 저는 편집중인 책의 디자인을 마무리하고있었어요. 캐나다 시민들이 책을 출판하고 무료 ISBN을 가질 수 있어요. 본질적으로 모든 사람이 출판사가되도록 장려합니다. 그래서 한 책을 출판 한 것은 이번이 두 번째이에요.

In the US, ISBNs are $125 for one number. They are cheaper when you buy them in bulk, but that seems to be more aimed towards small publishers than your regular joe who wants to turn his pdf into a physical book. In Canada, all that’s asked for publishers is that they register their books in the national database and, if possible, send a copy to be archived. This was actually my first motivation to publish a book many years ago, to leave a mark other than in galleries or online. People might forget me in a few years, but in an archive somewhere is a collection of my works which I’m probably too ashamed of and doesn’t represent my current works and tastes anymore. Forget children. A collection of my shameful drawings will be my legacy.

미국에서 ISBN은 한 번호 당 $ 125이에요. 대량으로 구입할 때 더 싸지만 PDF를 실제 책으로 바꾸고 싶은 사람들 보다 소규모 출판사를 대상으로하는 것 같아요. 캐나다에서 발행인에게 책을 국가 데이터베이스에 등록하고 할수 있으면, 사본을 보내면되요. 이것은 제 실제로 수년 전에 책을 출판하고 갤러리 나 온라인 이외의 다른 흔적을 남기려는 첫 번째 동기였어요. 몇 년 후에 사람들은 나를 잊을 수 있지만 아카이브 어딘가에는 내가 너무 부끄러워하고 더 이상 내 현재 작업과 취향을 나타내지 않는 내 그림들이 있을거에요. 아이들은 잊어라. 제 부끄러운 그림 모음집 이제 유산이 될 거예요.

Anyway, it is time I updated my awful works and have a new book published. This time, I’m working on a collection of my full-page busy drawings which I started last September. Last year was horrible, and if something could come out of the awfulness of 2020, it might as well be a small collection of my works.

어쨌든, 이제 제 끔찍한 그림들을 업데이트하고 새 책을 출판 할 때이에요. 이번에 작년 9 월에 시작한 전체 페이지의 바쁜 그림 모음을 중이에요. 작년은 끔찍했고 2020 년의 끔찍함에서 무언가 나올 수 있다면 제 그림들의 작은 컬렉션이 될 수도 있어요.

I don’t expect to get rich off of this, so I’m not yet firm on how I’m going to go about selling and marketing it. So far, I just want to finish it.

이것으로 부자가 될 것이라고 기대하지 않는데. 판매하고 마케팅하는 방법에 대해 아직도 확실하지 아니네요. 지금까지 끝내고 싶어요.

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A New Project

Someone floated to me the idea of making an ‘I Spy’ book. This sounds quite daunting, but having a project that would last me a good while actually sounds very appealing to me. Like my previous piece, it would mean drawing much larger images in order to be much better for print. I wouldn’t rely too much on text because viewers could easily see them and psychoanalyze me to death. And come approximately five to six months time, I would have enough images for a small collection for print. The only downside is planning and coming up with images, but that’s already something I struggle with on a daily basis.

This wouldn’t be my first foray into making a book. I once published a collection of my thesis works. It was a way for me to exhibit small works and have people examine them at home at their leisure as opposed to being in a gallery. I didn’t really have any expectations when I made the book. I just wanted to have all of the works in a collection, and then I could move on. What I didn’t realize is that once I had it registered with an ISBN number, the Canadian book archives would also want a copy for their collection. It’s been years now, and many of the images in that collection is not as strong as I would like and not really representative of what I do these days. Looking at the image above, this isn’t really what I do now. I would like to think I am better than this. It would be a shame if I die and the only thing that survives of my work are those images in the Canadian library archives somewhere in Ottawa.

I think making an ‘I Spy’ book would be very much the same process as my previous book, but simpler due to the planned number of images. My previous book had roughly 60 images in it, while an ‘I Spy’ book would be more like ten images. It would barely be a comic book and more like a pamphlet. Due to the small number of pages, I’m hoping I could design the book and have it print to order, as in print them whenever someone buys them online, instead of having a minimum of 250 copies printed in the initial batch which would leave me with so many books I have no idea how to sell. I remember having my first book and looking at stacks of them and wondering, “Now what?” Do I call Barnes and Noble?

This “Now what?” situation is notorious especially living in Seoul and having no storage for anything. This is why I avoid doing sculptures these days. On my previous projects, I had all of these works and not know what to do with them. As pleased as I am with materializing what I imagined in my head into actual physical objects, they end up becoming more burdensome than anything. This is why I stick with small drawings.

In my previous work, the hunt for words and images is just a collateral activity. The main goal was to collect my works and present them to the public. Looking back now, it was obnoxiously arrogant of me. Who would want a collection of my works? I’m an unknown artist. Anyway, the purpose of an ‘I Spy’ book is the hunt for images, the artist and viewing his work (and knowing him) are the collateral. Older and more experienced, I know that no one gives a damn about me. Just make interesting images.

The biggest fear for me here is that it would mean stepping away from my usual style of work for a while, a style that I’ve been comfortable with for so many years now. But I guess we all have to change things up a bit sometimes.

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Missing Shirow

squid

One of my favorite artists is Masamune Shirow. This is the artist/writer who inspired what arguably are the best parts of The Matrix. Not only is his art amazing, but he’s also a very thoughtful writer. I first discovered him back in the 90s. I wasn’t very familiar with manga at the time. Manga wasn’t as mainstream as it is now. At the time, I was very much into titles from DC, Marvel, and Image Comics. I remember picking up Ghost in the Shell on a lark and was immediately hooked. Not only was the story interesting, I found Shirow’s side commentaries just as interesting. From Ghost in the Shell, I moved on to Orion, my favorite book of his. In it, he crafted an interesting world of technology and Eastern mythology, but unfortunately, it’s a world he never went back to. Most of his works have a futuristic theme and explored with humanity living with the ever-encroaching forces of technology. He seems fascinated with and yet wary of it. (Apparently, his fear of flying keeps him pretty much living like a hermit.) Most people would know him from Ghost in the Shell, the inspiration to The Matrix. And what’s an amazing testament to his genius is that Ghost in the Shell still holds up to this day. I couldn’t say the same for The Matrix.

This was an artist who drew what he loved, and it showed in his writings. He was interested in guns, robots, arachnids, philosophy, technology, and yes, beautiful women. Unfortunately, I think that’s all he’s been doing lately.

I miss his stories. I miss the world he crafted. I would gladly pay good money for the next Ghost in the Shell, Appleseed, Dominion, or Orion. But lately, all he’s been releasing are art books. Granted, they are very beautiful, albeit erotic, art books, showing what an accomplished artist he is. But what I miss is Masamune Shirow the storyteller.

ghost_in_the_shell

I want more of this. ^

shirow

This is fine. ^  There’s a time and a place for this. But could we have more intelligent stories and less cartoon sex?

 

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