Tuesday 29 July 2008

Alan Moore interview [2]

Interview conceived by smoky man & Antonio Solinas.
Conducted via phone by A. Solinas on 19th February 2008.
Originally printed in Italy on Scuola di Fumetto (N. 60, May 2008, Coniglio Editore) and Blue magazine (N. 189, May 2008, Coniglio Editore) on the occasion of the Italian edition of Lost Girls published by Magic Press.
Presented here in English for the first time.
Lost Girls orginally published by Top Shelf.

Alan Moore interview [1]

6. Obviously Lost Girls had some implications on your personal life as well, so that’s a bonus, I guess…

In some ways, our lives and the work that we were doing together obviously became intertwined. I don’t think that we could have done this work together if we hadn’t been in a serious relationship together. And given that that is what has happened, I think that the two things have been incredibly beneficial to each other. I think that because when it came to working on Lost Girls, right from the very start, we would have to be frank in all of our thoughts and ideas which, in a lot of relationships, people can reach the end of their relationship without ever having discussed anything so intimate or personal, so that was the point on which me and Melinda’s relationship started, and that’s been to the benefit of our relationship, certainly. And on the other hand, I think that the fact that we are in this relationship has been of a tremendous importance to Lost Girls because in a lot of pornography, no matter how well written or drawn it may be, there is a certain coldness to it. There is a certain emotional distance from the words or images. It very often seems to be acted out by emotionless puppets and that is one of the things in pornography that I think we both found alienating, and so I think that what actually happened with Lost Girls was it’s got an awful lot of warmth, an awful lot of compassion, it’s very inclusive of a broad range of ordinary human activities and feelings and emotions, and it’s probably the fact that me and Melinda are in a warm and emotional relationship that has given Lost Girls an awful lot of its emotional depth, so I think the two things have a benefit to each other, really.

7. In the introduction for a recent edition of Writing for Comics that just came out in Italy, Rick Veitch talks about how your ideas are basically fully formed since the beginning. I suppose in this case, although there a strong core idea, we could say that the growth of the comic went hand in hand with a growth both as a partner and as a man.
Yes, that is true. Although what Rick was saying about my ideas been pretty fully formulated is true to a great extent (I mean certainly I knew roughly what was in all 30 episodes of Lost Girls before I started it, just like I kind of had a rough idea of how me and Melinda’s relationship would go), but at the same time with both of them, if you knew everything about it, wouldn’t be a lot of fun. So, even though we got the basic plot structure of Lost Girls worked out, there were still things that we were revising, chapter by chapter, page by page: the details, the way that the story was told, in Melinda’s case the visual approach to each story. These were details that we didn’t have written in stone right from the beginning. These were things that we left to be discovered along the way, just because that would be a more enjoyable experience. I mean, yes I do like to have my ideas pretty much sorted out right from the word go, so that I know where the thing is going to end, and roughly how it’s going to get from the beginning to the end, but I prefer to at least leave some surprises to myself.

8. Was this a pretty unique form of collaboration, in this respect?

Well, I think that certainly Lost Girls, amongst all of my collaborations, is completely unique. For one thing, from very early on, we came to a kind of a problem in our working methods. Melinda had been a writer/artist, she had been writing and drawing her own scripts: now, I had been used to working with comic book artists from the mainstream who were used to receiving scripts (even if they weren’t used to receiving scripts quite as long as detailed as mine are), but Melinda had never worked from a script, up to that point. So, when I was giving her these huge thick documents that would be a few dozen pages just for an eight-page chapter, I think it was very difficult for her to actually visualise from my panel description, the kind of scenes that I had in mind, so very early on, perhaps half a dozen chapters, where we had done it in script form (and, you know, it had worked fine), we thought that we could improve the process if I was to actually do thumbnail sketches (quite detailed thumbnail sketches), and then they would be given to Melinda, who would do the completed artwork, and would be of course adding an immense amount to my thumbnail sketches. And then, at the end of this, I would look at the completed artwork and there was a lot of room for serendipity. If Melinda had put a certain expression upon one of the characters faces, or had included some atmospheric touch, then I could allow that to colour the writing, so it was a much more complete and seamless collaboration than many of my previous ones. I mean, Melinda was contributing to the writing, in the sense that all of the scenes that we did were discussed thoroughly, and I was trying to take as many of Melinda’s ideas and her likes and dislikes on board as possible, and trying to tailor each chapter to Melinda’s skills, so the very writing was done with an awful lot of input (either direct or indirect) by Melinda, and the art had got an awful lot of input, in the way of my thumbnail sketches, from me. We were both involved in each other’s part of the process, if you like. It was a very close collaboration, as I say, it’s probably the closest collaboration that I have done, in terms of it kind resembling the work of one individual.

Alan Moore interview [3]
Alan Moore interview [4]
Alan Moore interview [5]

1 comment:

Armaduk said...

Uhm... mi interesserebbe un vostro esimio parere sul trailer di watchmen.

Ah, mo' vi linko!