Dreamwave House Style?

Discussion in 'Transformers Comics Discussion' started by MattMoylan, Aug 14, 2006.

  1. MattMoylan

    MattMoylan Well-Known Member

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    Hey all,

    Was just wondering, I've read about artists being forced into this 'dreamwave house style' mentioned several times in forums. I'm just wondering where that myth got started?
    I worked in house at Dreamwave for it's entire Transformers run and there was never such a thing as far as I knew. You'd have to figure that having a bunch of guys working closely together they would definitely pick up things from each other, but overall they was plenty of diversity in my opinion. Andrew Wildman doesn't look anything like James Raiz, who doesn't look anything like Jae Lee, Don Fig, Guido Guidi etc...
     
  2. Josh

    Josh Comic Color-guy

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    [​IMG]


    xD
     
  3. Josh

    Josh Comic Color-guy

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    in all seriousness though. ill answer back and say that to a degree, i believe there was a "house style"

    but i honestly think people blow it wayyyyyyyyyyyy out of proportion

    [this coming from someone who also did TF work with Dreamwave]



    there were certain "guidelines" i guess, sure. But like ya said, none of the other artists were really "copycats" of one style per se [well. Micromasters might be an exception xD >___>].

    i think there were only a couple things really "enforced" [probably too strong a word] were things like inked characters/pencilled backgrounds, Anime-ish style humans, and cel style coloring. but most of that was hardly the pencillers..."duty" :p 


    i dunno. in my opinion, there was a "house style" and there wasnt. but most the time people just blow it way out of proportion.

    And please dont argue the "well look at how much different/better Don is now that he's at IDW"

    eh.


    maybe so but...

    Artists are constantly bettering themselves, evolving, trying new stuff. Dons stuff is bound to look different regardless and i dont say that as merely an observer but as an artist myself.

    I know at least my colors have gotten far better now compared to the little bit i did at Dreamwave, but that wasnt because of any strict "house style". I've just evolved. Picked up new techniques. Tried new stuff.

    so yeah.... :p 

    my 2 cents


    maybe Don will pop in and give his 2 cents as well. Course things could always be different on his end. I was just one of many colorists, Don was one of the main pencillers *shrug*
     
  4. MattMoylan

    MattMoylan Well-Known Member

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    Ah yeah, I'd say the inked forgrounds/pencilled backgrounds style was a holdover from the old books like warlands and darkminds. But it was mostly ketp around just to get the books done faster heh. Takes a lot mroe time to ink full pages than just the backgrounds.

    As for the Anime style humans, there actually were a couple times that was enforced at Hasbro's request. The instances I remember specifically were TF Armada #1 by James Raiz, and the TF Armada Free Comic Book Day issue by Don. In both cases the human faces were redrawn to look more anime & me more in line with the tv show. (James redrew his own, and Dons' were altered by Pat Lee sicne Don lives a gillion miles away and fedexed his pages) Those are the only specific instances I remember.

    If anyone else remembers any others I can maybe shed light on them ;) 
     
  5. Gryph

    Gryph Action Master

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    Totally agree with everything you said!

    Another point is that you can usually tell if an artist has to use a particular style that's not really their own. It looks forced. Completely devoid of emotion. Look at Image in the 90s. There were constantly new books coming out that tried to go for that "Jim Lee style" that was extremely popular at the time. Most of those books looked awful due to either the artists themselves, or the higher ups demanding more and more books with that kind of style. That kind of practice is always a bad idea.

    Really, who in their right mind would want to see 50 books, all by different artists, but all look the same?

    On the artists styles changing thing. That's definately something I don't think a majority of non artists really get. No self respecting artist will never EVER want to draw the same way forever. I wouldn't care if I was a friggin artistic genius who could draw like a pro at 5. If my style stayed the same all the time, I'd get depressed.

    I remember a quote I read once. I believe it was in regards to someone asking Fred Perry why his style changes so often. I think it went something like this. "The day an artist feels he has nothing else to learn, is the day he is no longer an artist." What that means is that art is about learning and growing. If you don't learn anything and don't grow as an artist, then what you're doing isn't art. Fred's always been real big on the learning aspect of art.

    Luckily, the comicbook industry as a whole has done a good job lately in giving artists the freedom they need to draw the way they want. Marvel is a great example of this. You'd be hard pressed to pick up two Marvel books that look similar.
     
  6. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    from my own recollection it was mentioned in a don fig interview. something abt the way he had to style his humans, in particular the faces. thats it.
     
  7. Gryph

    Gryph Action Master

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    Yeah, that was just mentioned. It was a Hasbro thing, not a DW thing.
     
  8. Denyer

    Denyer Shooty Dog Thing

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    http://www.transfans.net/interviews_figueroa.php

    More on humans: http://www.transfans.net/interviews_raiz.php

    Did Don do his own inking? That and the standard in-house colouring certainly affected Wildman's pencils.

    I think the main contributing factor to a DW house style was simply that they didn't hire anyone for the TF books who drew outside certain parameters.
     
  9. MattMoylan

    MattMoylan Well-Known Member

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    Hmm, well I don't know exactly what Rob Ruffolo said to artists. But in Rob's defense as Art Director, most of the comments he passed on to the artists actually came from James McDonough & his buddy Adam Patyk. He essentially acted as their mouthpiece and got pretty frustrated with it. It was mostly the main reason he quit the Art Director position in the end, because he really wasn't giving the artists his own input as he should have been allowed to.

    As for the War Within stuff, were Andrew Wildman's pencils altered? I really don't remmeber that... I wasn't the PM in charge of War Within, but I certainly don't remember Hasbro asking us to change things... maybe I've blocked it out heh. Can you guys fill me in on how it was changed?
    Aa an asside(sp?) something I just remembered for no reason...don't recall if it was publicly known, but Mark Brooks was originally slated as the penciller of War Within 2, wouldn't that have been different heh ;)  He had agreed to come on board for it, but vol.2 get getting pushed back further and further an by the time we got aroudn to starting it Mark had moved onto other things.

    Don did ink his own stuff on occasion, but not often. Usually just when we needed a cover or something REALLY fast and didn't have time to wait for a Fedex. Elaine To inked most of Don's work.




    *just made lots of edits...I"m a horrible typer heh
     
  10. Kickback

    Kickback Proud father Administrator Super Mod News Staff

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    Hey, at least it's not Devil's Due.

    No matter who you are, they won't let you draw the actual GI Joe figures in a Transformers crossover. They will erase your images and let their GI Joe artist draw the Joes. As an artist, that would piss me off.
     
  11. Denyer

    Denyer Shooty Dog Thing

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    Honestly, while having no particular love for either due to the writing, that's one I'd have to take with a pinch of salt -- it's doubtful Micromasters turned out the way it did visually due to the script side. With the company breaking down, the "who said what to whom" factor is there a bit more than usual, and we'll never get a completely impartial account.

    "Covered" would be more apt, looking at some of them at a convention. (Med-res previews were up at Wildfur, but I think they've stopped selling the pencils/script packs now.) There was still a moderate amount of chamfering, but the precision of inks and colour gradations applied to them can easily represent an additional or different style input. The fact the artist and writer bothered selling copies of original production materials (and were prepared to let people see that stuff) indicates they weren't exactly happy with how Dark Ages turned out post-production, at least.

    http://www.newsarama.com/general/MarkBrooks/MarkBrooksBTP.htm
    http://www.deviantart.com/deviation/3450014/?qo=47&q=by%3Adiablo2003+sort%3Atime+-in%3Ascraps
    http://www.deviantart.com/deviation/3528619/?qo=46&q=by%3Adiablo2003+sort%3Atime+-in%3Ascraps
    Some more here: http://diablo2003.deviantart.com/gallery/?offset=44

    Would've been one fewer book for me to pick up, yeah. And much more in keeping with the standard established by Pat Lee's art.
     
  12. Vangelus

    Vangelus Long Live the New Flesh Moderator Content Contributor

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    Micromasters was the only time I felt that this "house style" stuff was blatantly happening, but that's mostly because I found the art to be like a Liefeldian-plus mutation of Pat Lee's early TF style. I have no idea if Rob Ruffalo was emulating, or if it was coincidence. It was kinda a shame, because a very decent story suffered because of it, IMO.

    Had no idea Wildman's stuff got altered like that, though. :(  Or I forgot.
     
  13. Josh

    Josh Comic Color-guy

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    Mark Brooks

    man


    oh what could have been *drool* xD
     
  14. Gryph

    Gryph Action Master

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    What!? That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard! Why do something like that? That would just make it take longer to finish the book.
     
  15. McBradders

    McBradders James Franco Club! Moderator

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    Such a tragedy Marvel snapped him up....


    :p 
     
  16. Josh

    Josh Comic Color-guy

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    i know *cries*

    id love to see him on a TF book now. *shakes fist at marvel*
     
  17. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    brooks has crazy skills!

    have you guys seen his black cat in his DA account?!

    *faints*
     
  18. McBradders

    McBradders James Franco Club! Moderator

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    Nuuuh. *goes and looks*

    Awesome!
     
  19. Denyer

    Denyer Shooty Dog Thing

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  20. McBradders

    McBradders James Franco Club! Moderator

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    Mark Brooks is about the only artist I would accept replacing Bagley on Ultimate Spider-Man
     

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