Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Troy Little: Comics Renaissance Man follows up Chiaroscuro with Angora Napkin

There's a terrific interview with P.E.I. comic artist Troy Little running at Comic Book Resources here.

Way back in 2001, Ottawa animator Tory Little won a Xeric grant to help self-publish his absorbing, black and white, indie comic Chiaroscuro (Not to be confused with Chiaroscuro: The Private Lives of Leonardo da Vinci). I bought his early issues at a Comic Con but after seven issues I lost track of it. It turns out that was all he published. IDW solved that little dilemma when they published a hardcover Chiaroscuro collection a year and a half ago.

Little's expressive, cartoony figure work combined with delicate crosshatching and deep, black shadows created an intensity that helped sustain his slowly evolving narrative. Much was made of how his storytelling resembled that of Dave Sim so it's rather ironic that a positive review of his work by Sim on his personal blog brought Little to the attention of IDW.

Little has spent many years in the salt mines of animation that I know so well and his latest comic, Angora Napkin, also from IDW, is based on an animation idea by Little and friend Nick Cross.

I often find artists with extended experience in animation demonstrate a notable ability to adapt their style for different projects. It's probably all that training hitting the varying styles of different series. Little's advice to up and comers can be summed up as stick to the basics; design and professionalism take concentration, flow and drawing ability grow with time.

Angora Napkin
benefits from Little's elegant design sense. It takes a lot of thought to make something feel this effortless. With it's partial colour interior and lovely cover, it's a gorgeous, fun package. Whereas Chiaroscuro needed lots of heavy inks and mystery to suggest what was hidden within its panel borders, here we find an organic freedom to the art. The characters are bursting with life.

I can't wait to see the actual animated shorts this is based on. But right now I'm glad we're getting a sneek peek!

There's plenty of Troy Little info out there.

You can get up to date info at Troy's blog here.

His website, Meanwhile Studios, can be found here.

And Nick Cross' blog is right here.

Beavers up!

1 comment:

  1. That I can recall I have never seen work made by Little before, but if Dave Sim has something to say about him then it has to be worth the time for research and study.