Thursday, March 17, 2011


I have begun to illustrate pages from a section in my Frankenstein book that I am really excited about. When I first talked to my editor about how I envisioned the book, we talked about who's perspective the story is told through. The original Mary Shelley's version is really a story within a story within a story within a story... Mary Shelley is telling a story about an explorer, who is telling a story about Victor Frankenstein, who is telling a story about his creation, who is telling a story about himself. I choose to tell the story through the perspective of Victor Frankenstein.

At the heart of it, Frankenstein is a story about a man and his obsession; How he abandons family, friends and health for this obsession and eventually he abandons the obsession itself. So I've decided that the majority of the book would be illustrated a certain way to represent this perspective. The sailor's story is told through letters and Mary Shelley's story and Victor Frankenstein's story have been combined as she is the author. This leaves the monster's perspective.

What I wanted to do with the monsters story is present it in a way that was more childlike, yet does not feel foreign alongside the other artwork. When the monster starts his story, it is black and white ink art much like that in newspaper comics and completely pictorial. As the story continues and the monster becomes more evolved and familiar with the world, so does the artwork. The next chapter mid tones are introduced to the art. The chapter after that, monochromatic color is introduced... and so on and so forth until the art in the monsters story resembles the rest of the art in the book.

Here are two pages from the monster's genesis.

Monday, March 14, 2011


For those of you who have been following along, you know that I am diving back into the epic workload that is Gris Grimly's Frankenstein; Based faithfully off the text of Mary Shelley but visually reinterpreted in a way that has never been done. That is my assignment. And what a daunting task it is.

With 75 pages completed for volume I, I still have another 100 pages to illustrate for volumes II and III. Volume one begins with Victor reflecting on the death of Justine, his guilt and a hopeless future. Emotionally, he walks into the darkness in solitude which sets the tone for his struggles that last throughout the rest of the book.

I have a huge workload to tackle which involves me entering my dark studio day after day in solitude. For the next few months, maybe as much as a year, I will be intertwining my mind with the writings of Shelley and the emotional and psychological manifestations of Victor. I too, am destined for a dark and solitary journey.

"I shunned the face of man; all sound of joy or complacency was torture to me; solitude was my only consolation - deep, dark, death-like solitude."

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Greetings fiends,
It has been months since I've worked on Frankenstein and therefore there have been no updates or blog postings. But a couple weeks ago, I received an email from Frankenstein's editor with progressive information. "attached you’ll find a PDF template of all your sketches from these two volumes plugged in, with basic FPO text blocks, so we can see what we’re working with. Design created this and then passed it to me, and I used this PDF to create the notes below"

A bit technical, but this is the news I was waiting for to proceed. With this information, I am now able to proceed on a few illustrations. Yesterday I went through all the notes my editor sent me and composed an email pinpointing those that will work and benefit the book and those that are better left unchanged. So I should be having a conversation with him soon regarding this that will open the gates of hell and unleash me into the playground.

Today, I illustrated the first Frankenstein page in over 6 months. How exciting is that! What better illustration to tackle than the volume page for volume III. This page sets up the scene for the remainder of the book where Victor is moved to create yet another fiend from rifled graves. This time he creates a woman to wed the monster, in hopes that his problems will go away. But they only get worse.

I am now in a place, like before, where I am unleashed and free to create my madness. There's no holding me back and the creations will flow out like spilled bowels. Welcome back to the Frankenstein Blog which is once again alive. I leave you with this passage of vengeance from the mouth of Victor Frankenstein:

"By the sacred earth on which I kneel, by the shades that wander near me, by the deep and eternal grief that I feel, I swear; and by thee, O Night, and by the spirits that preside over thee, I swear to pursue the demon, who caused this misery, until he or I shall perish in mortal conflict. I call on you, spirits of the dead; and on you, wandering ministers of vengeance, to aid and conduct me in my work. Let the cursed and hellish monster drink deep of agony; let him feel the despair that now torments me."