but we thought it would be fun to put them in one post!

§ John Jakala presents his awards for 06 after realizing there is a LOT to read.

When I think back on 2006, one thing keeps coming to mind: Christ, were there ever a lot of comics I didn’t read. And I’m not even talking about notable books that I haven’t gotten around to checking out, like Pride of Baghdad and Abandon The Old in Tokyo, both of which have been getting very strong reviews but are still waiting for me to pick up at the library. No, I’m referring to comics I actually own that — two weeks into 2007 — still sit unstarted or unfinished. (It’s the unfinished ones that especially nag at me: Cleaning my office recently, I uncovered dozens of books I’d started but subsequently forgotten about. And with my failing memory, it was impossible to pick up where I’d left off, so they may as well be added to the “unread” pile all over again.)

§ Glenn Danzig is still at it. The small but combative heavy metal superstar has recently resurrected his comic book company Verotik. Danzig is no Johnny-come-lately to comics. He’s one of the very first celebrities to get comics crazy–he did it way before it was fashionable OR safe!

Another of those various other gigs Danzig refers to is that of comic-book publisher, through his company Verotik. Nowadays, comic books turned into film franchises are as tried-and-true as sequels. So why not have Danzig’s ink-and-paper characters join the fray? He says the transition from comics to films for some of his creations might occur sooner than later. “A lot of people are calling about the Verotik characters now, and I’ve been writing a bunch of scripts,” he tells AOL Music. One book was close to making the transition. “We did have ‘Gerouge’ with a production company we pulled it from, and now we’re talking to two other production companies right now about bringing it there,” he says of the miniseries he wrote about turn-of -the-20th-century New Orleans voodoo.

Artwork Images 934 137141 Mel-Ramos
§ Artkrush, a magazine on the art world, takes a look at the latest batch of fine artists to draw from comics inspiration:

Today’s artists rely less on direct reference to comic-book imagery in favor of a more discursive visual style in which comics comprise one star in a dense constellation of cultural references. Trenton Doyle Hancock combines late Philip Guston with Hieronymus Bosch and a dollop of the Garbage Pail Kids to create narratives encompassing autobiography and lysergic fantasy. Julie Mehretu constructs psychic maps whose topographies includes comics, graffiti tags, baroque engravings, and elements of Japanese landscape painting, while Chie Fueki uses collage, paint, and colored pencil to limn the relationships between athletes and superheroes. Laylah Ali‘s gouache-on-paper Greenheads series is a comical meditation on race relations, and Marcel Dzama‘s equally delicate pen, ink, and root-beer wash compositions flirt with narrative and unusual superheroes. Takashi Murakami’s Kaikai Kiki studio has nurtured several Japanese artists who employ a hallucinatory manga style, such as Chiho Aoshima and Aya Takano, and Indian-American Chitra Ganesh uses collage, assemblage, and digital manipulation in a cross-cultural stew that includes Greek and Indian mythology, comics, and Bollywood posters.

Pictured, “Hawkman” ©1962 by Mel Ramos, an early exponent of the comics/art x-over.