Saturday, September 20, 2014

Shade The Changing Man – Everything is Real – Travis M. Holyfield

8 panels. Put together, these panels essentially create a splash page. SHADE stands at the back of an O.R.C. meeting hall. His back is to us, and we are looking past him down the hall. DOCTOR Z.Z. is at the end of the hall, delivering a sermon to a crowd of eager parishioners seated in long wooden pews. The hall itself is unornamented, plain except for some Metan imagery at the podium where Z.Z. stands.

Again, the idea with each panel is that we are scanning down Shade's body, starting with his left shoulder in panel 1 and then continuing right and downwards until we reach his right fist in panel 8. The rest of the panel is taken up with the surrounding layout of the O.R.C. center.

Panel 1: Shade's left shoulder.

DOCTOR Z.Z.: You have come here because you want to know The Truth! You have come here because you know that THEY are keeping The Truth FROM YOU!

Panel 2: Shade's right shoulder.

DOCTOR Z.Z.: You are here because you see over two dozen celebrities, actors, actresses, musicians! You see a United States Congressman, and you know that THEY know The Truth!

Panel 3: Shade's left upper arm.

DOCTOR Z.Z.: The Truth that our beloved founder Wizor died to bring this world! 

Panel 4: Shade's right upper arm.

DOCTOR Z.Z.: The Truth that we here at the Occult Research Center protect and cherish, and that we invite you to be a part of!

Panel 5: Shade's left forearm.

DOCTOR Z.Z.: And The Truth, my friends is that IT IS ALL TRUE!

Panel 6: Shade's right forearm.

DOCTOR Z.Z.: Everything you have ever dreamed, everything you have ever believed, is TRUE, and it is REAL, and it is THERE FOR YOU TO TAKE!

Panel 7: Shade's left hand.

DOCTOR Z.Z.: Join the O.R.C., give yourself over to our trust, and we will pull back the secret skin of the multiverse! We will show you Meta and BEYOND!

Panel 8: Shade's right fist now begins to crackle and distort with the strange energies of his M-Vest.

DOCTOR Z.Z.: FOLLOW US! And no one in this world or any other will ever stand in your way again!


  1. I love it. It's got that Ditko-paranoia-panic vibe combined with a real graphic design sensibility (don't know why, but I couldn't help but think of that old movie poster for Anatomy of a Murder). Really neat piece this week, Travis...

  2. I like the idea and the dialogue, but am having a difficult time imagining the actual page in a completed form. From what I can glean, it sounds like Shade's body would cover up the vast majority of the panel, with only bits and pieces visible beyond him. I feel like I'm missing something, because the impression I'm getting is a cramped and busy page that is mostly taken up with the negative space that is Shade's back.

    1. I'm probably just not sticking the landing in communicating what I am envisioning, Grant. I think the right artist could make this happen. But an editor might agree with you that it's too cramped.

      One thing I would change if I did it over again is to have only the first panel as actual dialogue, as likely that would be the only panel where Z.Z. is visible. The rest of the text would become captions as we move down and around Shade to reveal the rest of the meeting hall.

      One thing I'm really trying for in these weekly exercises is to stretch myself in page layout and composition. Test things out and see where they work and where they don't. Looks like I'm batting .500 on this attempt


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