In the Studio


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Visits with Contemporary Cartoonists

Todd Hignite

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Price: $19.95
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Listen to an interview with Todd Hignite on the Yale Press Podcast.

Nine critically acclaimed cartoonists and graphic novelists invite us into their studios to discuss their art and inspirations

These studio visits with some of today’s most popular and innovative comic artists present an unparalleled look at the cutting edge of the comic medium. The artists, some of whom rarely grant interviews, offer insights into the creative process, their influences and personal sources of inspiration, and the history of comics. The interviews amount to private gallery tours, with the artists commenting, now thoughtfully, now passionately, on their own work as well as the works of others. The book is generously illustrated with full-color reproductions of the artists’ works, including some that have been published and others not originally intended for publication, such as sketchbooks and personal projects. Additional illustrations show behind-the-scenes working processes of the cartoonists and particular works by others that have influenced or inspired them. Through the eyes of these artists, we see with a new clarity the achievement of contemporary cartoonists and the extraordinary possibilities of comic art.

Todd Hignite is an independent scholar and curator and the founding editor of Comic Art magazine. He lives in St. Louis.

“An essential work for anyone interested in contemporary American art and culture.”—John Carlin, author of Masters of American Comics   

"A delightful and lavishly illustrated new book."—National Post, Toronto

"Beautifully designed, informative and transcending the ‘insider’ genre, the book offers insights into the imaginations of the like of R. Crumb, Daniel Clowes, Art Spiegelman, and six others."—L.K. Hanson, Minneapolis Star Tribune

"St. Louisan Hignite, editor of the estimable journal Comic Art, interviews nine major cartoonists, including Robert Crumb, Art Spiegelman and Chris Ware, giving equal emphasis to the artists’ own work and to their inspirations and influences."—Jane Henderson, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“A big, beautifully illustrated collection of conversations with superstars like Charles Burns, Daniel Clowes, Robert Crumb, Chris Ware, and Ivan Brunetti. The ‘visits’ read like intimate chats with like-minded friends, with the artists revealing their creative processes and their influences.”—Chicago Reader

"It's academic but fannish at the same time, almost on the level of 'where do you buy your pencils?'...The result is exactly the kind of text that will be invaluable to comics scholars."---Roger Sabin, The Observer

“[This] book deserves to be on any contemporary art aficionado’s coffee table as well as any art critic’s year-ending ‘best of’ listings. [It is] filled with sunken treasures. . . . For anyone already familiar with this turf, each page in [this book] is a visceral delight, if not a thrill, something to be savored. . . . For those unfamiliar with contemporary work in this groundbreaking genre, [this book] will be a breathtaking revelation.”—Alan Bisbort, Sunday Republican-American

"A series of fascinating monologues from Ivan Brunetti, Charles Burns, Daniel Clowes, Robert Crumb, Jaime Hernandez, Gary Painter, Seth, Art Spielgelman, and Chris Ware. The focus is on the artists' imaginations, influences, and sources of ideas. Full-color examples from their sketchbooks, finished work, and quirky choices for inspiration whet the appetite for some of the lesser-known titles in graphic storytelling. The production values are excellent."—Library Journal

“Compelling and revelatory . . . a forum of top contemporary talent.”—Booklist

"This is an instructive, delightful and surprising study about cartoons and their making. . . . Cartoonists think of themselves as storytellers, and the author succinctly describes their medium as visual writing. . . . [A] richly illustrated book."—Phi Beta Kappa

"[An] excellent book to add to the growing body of scholarship on comics. . . . This collection of interviews is an absolute treasure. . . . For anyone interested in comics, In the Studio is an important source of visual and verbal information about how and why comics work and what motivates their creators to produce them."—Jon Susina, Children's Literature Association Quarterly

"The section devoted to Robert Crumb alone is worth the price of admission. . . . Readers who love comics will enjoy these glimpses over the shoulders of the great comic artists looking at the work that inspires them."—Richard Handler, Virginia Quarterly Review

"Hignite has created a book that will resonate for a long time. . . . [In the Studio] is far more than a set of personal anecdotes, as each artist reveals something important about their understanding of comics that any student of art, be it a scholar of aspiring artist, will find useful, challenging, or inspiring."—Rob Clough, Sequart Research & Literacy Organization

Named one of the Best Books of 2006 by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Selected as a 2007 AAUP University Press Book for Public and Secondary School Libraries.

Finalist for a 2007 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award, Best Comics-Related Book
ISBN: 9780300133875
Publication Date: November 14, 2007
320 pages, 8 1/2 x 11
499 color illus.