I intend for this project to be my first great work of art and i am prepared for the possibilility that it may be my last and only. Up until this point, I had not yet discovered or determined a project to which I felt the desire and need to devote myself completely, toward which I felt the potential to fully demonstrate and test my abilities as an artist. At last I have found it.
My vision is intimidatingly lofty and ambitious, but I have such confidence in the quality of the material and in my ability to bring it to fruition.
In keeping with themes such as transformation and entropy, I plan for the visual style of the artwork,as well as that of the structure of the pages and books themselves, to change, grow, and complexify as the series progresses, mirroring the story's explorations and implications, the depth of which is systematically revealed as the story unfolds.
This development will occur through the same pattern that dictates the nature of the chapters and the greater arc, following the structure of the Sephirotic Tree of Life, moving backwards up the tree, through each emanation. To properly pace the development, I plan to implement changes and characteristics of increasing severity in specific stages as we move each 'rung' of the tree:
RUNG I: Ch. 1 - The first chapter Malkuth, the furthest emanation of God, follows the theme of 'Filter' as the physical world is the filter through which we perceive the greater reality. As such, the story begins far from its greater underlying machinations, and very little is revealed about the story's universe. It opens almost as a murder mystery, following a character, the investigative journalist, Samuel Barrette, who is far-removed from the greater plot. The reader begins as ignorant to the Truth as Barrette, and thus the reader's discoveries occur through Barrette's experience as an outside observer.
To visually support these themes, I plan for the first issue to be the most 'generic' in visual form and the most rigidly structured. The page layouts will all be explicit derivations of the 3x3 panel format employed in Watchmen. The visual style of the artwork will be entirely conveyed through what will henceforth be referenced as the 'Default Style.' The Default Style is the binding agent which will house the widely varying art styles and techniques which will come about in later issues. It is equivalent of the concrete 'real world' of consensus reality. Scenes illustrated in the Default Style are meant to imply the world seen through sober eyes, unfettered by outside influence, chemical or spiritual. The great majority of the series will be illustrated in the Default Style, with intrusions of widely varying styles and implications, occurring with increasing regularity and intensity as the series progresses.
The visual nature of the Default Style will also be similar to Dave Gibbons' style in Watchmen, which manages to appear incredibly realistic, without attempting to be photo-realistic. Ironically, past a point, as comic artwork approaches photo-realism, it tends to lose a certain lifelike quality. The Default Style is intended to avoid this fallacy, to rather portray a realistic world that is just flexible enough to allow for the romanticism of the cartoon. Gibbons' style also saddles a line between those of typical superhero comics and grittier detective comics, a quality which I strive to emulate.