Saturday, January 20, 2007

Alan Moore / Eddie Campbell & the best description of rain you'll ever read.

More proof, if proof were needed of how wonderful Eddie Campbell is. The weblog has become required reading day after day as Eddie shows us around his life. (Although in this case, I'd fallen behind on my blog reading today and I picked it up via Pete Ashton)

Currently he's putting up the Alan Moore scripts to From Hell that he received whilst illustrating it.

The current one just goes to to show us how, even if we kept going for centuries, none of us have the talent available in our bodies that means Alan Moore has the ability to describe the rain in some marvellous new way:

Panel 3:
The rain continues to fall like Morse code for some huge, depressing Russian novel.

That's the one Eddie Campbell picks out, but it's worth reading the scripts for all the interesting asides, all the jokes, all the insights and then sit back and marvel at the detail involved.

Then wonder how the hell Eddie Campbell managed to wade through these huge scripts to actually produce a page of stunning art from them.
The answer to that one I believe, as far as I recall reading somewhere, is that Eddie's wife Annie used to pore over the scripts with a highlighter to pick out anything that actually described what was in the panel so Eddie just had to draw what he saw in fluorescent yellow.


  1. Richard,
    the last line is from an odd rumour started by Sim and Moore which was a bit of malarkey at my expense in the 'conversation' they did in Cerebus.

    Anne has never read from hell let alone the from hell scripts. Her part in it was to rule up the pages using the first line of instruction for each page which i asked Alan to put there (ie put it in the first line so she doesn't have to go trying to figure it out and slowing up the process. )

    The yellow highlighter business is actually what Gibbons did. He'd read through the script once, simplifying it into its salient points so he wouldn't have to go rummaging to find key words later while he was drawing.

    best to you

    Eddie Campbell

  2. Fair point from Eddie there.
    And, like the true gent he is, he makes the point so very nicely.
    Still, it's always been a lovely rumour and I always liked the idea of Anne going through the book highlighting the salient points!

    Having read the long out of print From Hell scripts, I did always feel incredibly sorry for Eddie having to construct a page of incredible artwork out of the incredibley descriptive scripts he was sent by Alan. Sure, they were great to read, but to actually make pages out of them - monumental work.

    Cheers for clearing it up Eddie.