120: “Can’t get out that way.”
c.1982/83 | age 14? It’s pretty much non-stop action from here on readers! This Star Wars comic book adaptation really takes off, in the same part of the story that the movie itself did. Lots of action—blasting—interpersonal conflict—sniping—and humour! I love the humour in the first 2 Star Wars movies. Thank you so much Harrison Ford!
There’s no doubt that I’d decided I was going to be a comic artist at this point. I would have been thinking (a little) about art college and wondering: “Why on earth do I even need to go to school with the rest of the non-artistic kids. I mean—what good is Maths or Physics or any of the rest of that unintelligible gibberish going to for me?”
As it turned out, I did need 2 honours and 4 passes in my final exams—even to get into art college. But as a teenager who spent his days in a dream world of comics and heavy metal music (and girls), never seeming to seriously think about that college and career stuff, this would have come as a surprise. “You mean they won’t just automatically let me in—once they’re dazzled by my amazing talent?”
When I did go for my art college interviews—having got an A in art despite the school not having an art class—I must have seemed quite annoying as I spoke to them about comics or animation as preferred careers; and they leafed through a portfolio which featured—amongst some good observational studies, which are key to art college portfolio submissions—the occasional dreadful AC/DC drawing copied from a photo, or some Jim Fitzpatrick rip-off Celtic crap.
Picture if you will: a Conan the Barbarian type; against celtic filigree patterns; wielding an unfeasibly HUGE battle-axe in one vein-bursting hand, and a weird heavy metal electric guitar in the other. All splattered in blood. There was probably a Boris Vallejo-style babe cringing on the ground behind him. How did I even get in to art college?
Filigree. That word still makes me cringe today. There’s just something about it…