christian comic project?

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jrr
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Post by jrr » Fri Feb 03, 2006 9:54 am

i think those jack chick comics are great. unintentional hiliarity. the art in them is actually very very good
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gau dog
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Post by gau dog » Fri Feb 03, 2006 11:48 am

I'm a Christian, and I've occasionally made some Christian references in my comics but not overbearing. I have thought about making a directly Christian comic but a few things get in the way. Motivation, am I doing it for God or myself and usually I do comics for myself so I don't want them mixed. And if you do it to make money, it's hard for me to think of mixing business and religion. Reception, Christians will openly recieve such material, but I feel there's other active groups that are actually hostile to such material. I feel generally in the comic community, there are more hostiles and cynics than friendlies. It seems many people feel Jack Chick tracks are a laughing stock. I never understand why preachyness is a bad thing, especially in a Christian context. It's how ministers get their message to their congregation every Sunday. It's not necessary, but it's doesn't ruin a story either. I wonder how many people hate "A Charlie Brown Christmas" because of it's preachyness. Is it from the text? Of course if you're drawing scenes from the Bible itself, you don't have to worry, but if you make some fictional story, you have to make sure it's in accordance to what God wills. At least, I'd worry about it. Despite all this, yeah, I would like to make a Christian comic. Drawing parts of the Bible is one of the safest approaches to it. It's pretty epic though. I'd like taking a crack at short parts of it, maybe. Maybe draw a cartoony style to the Bible just to make it friendlier to kids or something.

There is already "The Picture Bible" drawn by Andre Le Blanc and everything is in realistic comic form. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/078143 ... oding=UTF8

I think when you're working on something as personal as this, the artist/author should be a believer and not a non-believer. You should ask Doug Tennapel to do some cartoony Bible comics. He's pretty outspoken on his Christianity http://www.tennapel.com/. There's also Johnny Hart of B.C. fame http://www.lambiek.net/artists/h/hart.htm. Tony Bancroft of http://www.toonacious.com, I don't know if he does comics though. His twin brother, Tom Bancroft http://www.funnypagespress.com/ does comics and probably is Christian since Tom is. Van Partible, who made Johnny Bravo is also a believer, don't know how good of a comic artist he is though.

Here's a site where you can learn a little more about Christian comics: http://comix35.gospelcom.net/

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mr cow
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Post by mr cow » Fri Feb 03, 2006 5:32 pm

you're right, dean. a project like this shouldn't be limited to just bible stories. in fact, the last thing i would want to do is limit anybody creatively. in my head though, a book full of bible stories just seemed like a more unified approach to something, and possibly more accessible to the average reader. i also know that when i say "christian", that can mean a lot of different things. mike, you're a morman- and that's great and i respect that but, well, i'm not. nor am i catholoc. or protistant either for that matter. so if a project does come together, i would hate to bump heads on separate viewpoints that could destroy something like this before it even gets off the ground. I think there would almost have to be limitations at first just to keep things from becoming a theological battle or something. but i could be wrong here, i know.

but, man, i can't tell you who awesome it is that so many of you are on board with this! and all of you have valid points and ideas and concerns i really like to hear because, i know, i'm in way over my head to start a christian comic project. it's definitely something i want to do, but gau dog let me assure you, it's not for me. i really had this idea in mind for God. i hadn't even thought of financial gain or anything like that. off the top of my head i would say profits (if any) would go to churches and getting some more books out- if it warranted it. i don't know. i'm not there yet. i was just seeing if there was interest.

and there is. so give me a month or so to get something together. maybe a web page to start. a message board perhaps. contact some of the people you mentioned to see if there's any interest there. i know having some big names attached is vital. christian or not christian? um.. let's wait and see...

let me also mention that i'm the last person that i think is capable of doing something like this. organizing large projects is something i have no experience in and i've been a bit stressed over the past two days of feeling like i have to do this. but i have confidence that if this is something God wants to happen, well, he'll make it happen. but if you could all do me a favor and just pray about it?

because for this to work, it would have to be huge.
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mr cow
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Post by mr cow » Fri Feb 03, 2006 5:33 pm

oh, one other thing- any ideas on what might make a good name for something like this?
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Vince
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Post by Vince » Fri Feb 03, 2006 7:56 pm

How about Dead Sea Stories, unless that's already taken? This is your baby, but I kind of like weird, oblique titles lately.

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Post by Dean Rankine » Fri Feb 03, 2006 8:01 pm

mr cow wrote:oh, one other thing- any ideas on what might make a good name for something like this?
I like 'Dead Sea Strories'. Or how about ,'Comics of Milk and Honey'? :D
HOLY COW! Christian Comics - http://www.webcomicsnation.com/deanrankine/

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JoePotato
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Post by JoePotato » Sat Feb 04, 2006 12:00 am

This is a great thread. Myself and a couple of guys here in Northern California have been on this project, of Christian comics, for a few months already. We'll have some stuff coming out at A.P.E in SF in April. It's not a big colabrative like you are dreaming of, Mr. Cow. Just some individual works. Anyhow we're really stoked on getting the Word out and have already hashed through a lot of those questions of preahyness and what angle to use and why hasn't there been more success in Christian comics.

Anyhow, I'm down.

I would love to have some more Comic/Christian fellowship too. :D
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neil
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Post by neil » Sat Feb 04, 2006 12:06 am

Hey I think this could work really well if you guys do a great job of it. There are a lot of Christian filmmakers and musicians who I find really moving, even though I'm not a Christian myself... I haven't really seen this done well in comics though (not that it hasn't been).

Retelling bible stories is probably tougher ground, because it seems like the most preachy thing to do, and kind of unoriginal. I'd want to read more personal, inspired stories about what moves you, how you find faith in the strangest places, etc. Or for one story you could lampoon a Jack Chick tract but make it like a "better" version, something that dispells the hatred and prejudice and replaces it with genuine faith? I'm obviously outside my element here, but I think it'll be great if you treat it as an artistic challenge rather than a missionary one.

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Mike Laughead
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Post by Mike Laughead » Sat Feb 04, 2006 12:35 am

neil wrote:Retelling bible stories is probably tougher ground, because it seems like the most preachy thing to do, and kind of unoriginal. I'd want to read more personal, inspired stories about what moves you, how you find faith in the strangest places, etc.
I was thinking along these lines as well as the Bible stories. I was a missionary in Argentina for two years. I figure that that interests people way more than if I tried to tell a story about Noahs' son looking at him naked.
neil wrote:I'm obviously outside my element here, but I think it'll be great if you treat it as an artistic challenge rather than a missionary one.
I completely and totally agree with Neil here. If the story feels true, it will affect the reader. If a solid good story is told it "preaches" for itself, and those that want to get the message will do so.
Last edited by Mike Laughead on Wed Feb 08, 2006 6:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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JoePotato
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Post by JoePotato » Sat Feb 04, 2006 12:54 am

I hear you. I think that's a great point. There are even some great examples in the Flight books that touch on faith and belief in God. That's one of the things that attracted me to Flight is that it's not filled with a lot of smut or immature action sequences, but thoughtful, intelligent stories.

And so I think Mr. Cow needs to decide does he want do something Biblical (which can be broad yet specific), Or Chistian (new testament, Jesus Christ, the last days), Or is it something that is just on the concept of a god (general and full of all kinds of interpretations)?

The works that I'm doing deal with the relevance of God changing lives through His Son and His Spirit.
In other words :( :arrow: :D.
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Blom
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Post by Blom » Sun Feb 05, 2006 8:17 am

Making comics of the stories in The Bible is hard, becouse it has been done before and becouse it needs alot of skills from the person who is making them.

I hope that everyone of you take a look at this Danish artist who has made The story of Jesus trough the eyes of Peter, and he has also done some other books with stories from The Bible. Here is a link to one page that show some: http://www.silkeborg.bib.dk/forfatterne ... grafi.html

Sorry the page is in Danish, but the pictures is understandable...


I wish you all the best in the work, and I hope that the link abow makes you more inspired to do it!

Blom.

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mr cow
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Post by mr cow » Sun Feb 05, 2006 7:48 pm

Dean Rankine wrote:Or how about ,'Comics of Milk and Honey'?
you know the cow fanatic in me just loves that title, right?

even more encouragement in here! you guys are awesome! you're right joe- i do need to decide what i want this project to be about. from reading these posts, it's apparent that limiting this project simply to bible stories would be a bit unfair. especially to those that really have something else they'd want to tell but would struggle with keeping within the confines of a theme like that. right now, it's just an open idea and i want to keep the ideas that develop for something like this open as well. of your choices, joe, biblical is definitely the one i would choose- though i'm sure that will narrow down as this project really starts to get off the ground.

i'll actually be talking to a few people in ministry this week to get some feedback and input on what they think of something like this. i think it's important to make sure we are doing this for all the right reasons and to make sure we go about things in the right way. i'm right there with mike and neil that this should be treated as an artistic endeaver and not a missionary one. we should not only show skeptics out there what a great christian anthology we can put out, but churches and ministries how great comics can be and how they can also be used to spread the word of God.

blom- the two pages i saw of peter madsen's work blew me away. he would be an awesome addition if we can get someone to translate danish.

joe- i really wish i could make it to APE this year. i'd love to see what you and your friends are showing. i'll offer to buy some comics if you're selling them?

this summer i will, finally, be going to san diego. it'll be my first trip out to sunny cal and i hope to see a lot of you there. and though it wasn't my plan when i first decided to make the trek out there this year, it now seems like the perfect time to really get a reaction going with this and meet a lot of people face to face. i guess we'll see how things progress in the next few months.

until then though, let's start spreading the word about this project on the web, and see what kind of reaction we get there. i'll get a website going, hopefully this month, to really make things official.

talk to you soon,
-mike
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Kazu
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Post by Kazu » Mon Feb 06, 2006 2:13 am

This is an interesting thread. It's so great to see all of you talking about religion in such a relaxed manner, as I do believe that the idea of faith is very important in any artistic endeavor.

On a separate note, I also find it interesting that my comics have found a large Christian following. Now, I'm not a Christian, but mostly because my parents didn't take us to church. I imagine I would have been if they had. I do believe, however, that there are universal principles by which we can lead very effective and fulfilling lives, and these are ideas that can be passed on to future generations by way of storytelling. It's what gives this craft meaning - the passage of ideas. And some of these ideas are found in Christian mythology, but they are also found in other mythologies and in our continued observation of the way we, and this world, work. In effect, it is everywhere around us, and I believe that if a storyteller has a duty, it is that he or she is to take all of this information, distill it into a form that is accessible to younger generations, and pass it on. In every iteration, it is the story of our lives.

With that in mind, if you were to bring aboard people with the same principles and philophies, provide a place for them to create freely, the book you have a vision for will come together naturally. If it's Bible stories, then great. If not, great. It really doesn't matter, because each person on board will have a unique, distinct perspective, even if under the banner of Christianity. In fact, I think that having non-Christians adapt Bible stories may produce the most interesting, and perhaps most inspiring, results. To know exactly what that book will look and feel like before you begin to create it, will undermine the very definition of faith. So bring these folks together, and just go for it. Sounds like an interesting idea. I'm sure something will come of it, and I imagine you won't be lacking in support. Good luck! :D
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chasecorbeau
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Post by chasecorbeau » Tue Feb 07, 2006 12:15 am

It seems many people feel Jack Chick tracks are a laughing stock
Eh... I'm one of those people. The problem is, especially with his notorious Dark Dungeons, it's painfully obvious he doesn't know what he's talking about. I'm sorry, but D&D doesn't kill people, nor is a typical game anything like what he portrayed. The only moral I get from reading his stuff is that Christians are uneducated, which is probably not what he intended.

Bible stories can be cute and acceptable when handled in a non-preachy way. When I was younger, I used to watch a Japanese animation called Flying House and a very similar one called Super Book. Both were about children that traveled back in time and observed bible stories first hand (I think Flying House covered Jesus's time and Super Book covered the old testament). They were innocent, unnassuming, entertaining, educational, and always had a moral. They also had robots. Now you can't beat that!
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Post by gau dog » Tue Feb 07, 2006 12:40 pm

That's another concern, not every Christian agrees on the same principles. Some can be liberal, others conservative. I haven't read much of Chick's stuff but I think it would be unfair to call him and other Christians uneducated. You can say he's misinterpretive or just disagree with him, but he seems to draw all of his beliefs from the Bible text. I'm guessing lots of Chick's stuff is overdramatic and sometimes campy.

Flying House and Super Book? I think I've seen clips of that in Spanish, I think and always wondered what it was. Yeah, it looks cool.

I somewhat recently found there's this stop animation show called Davey and Goliath that's made by the same guy who made Gumby. It's kind of appealing in a retro kind of way. http://media.elca.org/ramgen/Davey/jeep1.rm

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