Nathan Fox Illustrates Cory Booker for Politico
In his latest collaboration with Politico Magazine, illustrator Nathan Fox took United States Senator Cory Booker and raised him to super-human status for a non-fiction comic strip.
Finding his passion for cartoons and graphic novels at an early age, Nathan is no stranger to creating comic strips. “Cory Booker is a real-life figure who is just as flawed and fantastic as fictional heroes. People have a very interesting and exciting and rich and very dramatic past, so the story was there. I wanted to find a balance between a real figure as well as somebody who kind of has that charisma and aspiration of something fictional, beyond human. A lot of elements in his opening image are directly relevant to the story: the Newark skyline, dog leash, and shovel,” explained Nathan.
Politico first reached out to Nathan before Christmas, with the hopes of creating a comic strip to be debuted in print in the New Year, before Cory announced his candidacy for the 2020 Presidency. When Politico decided to go digital, that meant that Nathan would not only be switching mediums, and figuring out the in’s and out’s of a digital comic, but that the original 6-page comic strip could be extended to an infinite scroll. “That's when we started pushing the format, trying to use the right space and infinite scroll aspect of a mobile device. We were able to expand the story, so it was much more in-depth. It definitely went from what would have been a text-heavy, dense comic to a bit more of a fluid and organic showing of the legend of Cory booker, digitally,” explained the illustrator.
While the illustrator enjoyed comics in his own childhood, he didn’t always feel a connection to the classic narrative of larger than life superheroes. “It was hard to believe in superheroes in my childhood because they weren’t real. I never really latched onto them. I was initially interested in the visual storytelling in a bit more of an Indiana Jones or Robin Hood direction. There’s something that’s more tangible with real people doing extraordinary things.”
Inspired by the character and heroism of real people, Nathan brings a feeling of tangible authenticity to his illustrations. “One of the challenges was adding in real quotes and not fictional ones. We didn’t want to go too far into dramatizing his story. We tried to stick with reality. It was a real challenge not to go too far into fiction and over dramatization of his life, ‘cause it's much easier to do that. This account is as close to what really happened as what we could possibly get.”
Nathan Fox and The Washington Post Bring Light to the Darkness
The darkness is upon us – for an hour at least.
Today the entire United States is gearing up to witness the first total solar eclipse of its kind in 99 years. The celestial event will plunge much of the mainland US in darkness during the middle of the day, offering many a nice break from daily work and a new story to tell the next generation. The event will be lighthearted for most, an exciting topic of conversation, and that’s because we understand what’s going on astronomically. We know the moon is orbiting in such a way that it will hide sun for a few moments, and then pass through to reveal the sun again. But in centuries past when the moon covered the sun, it was less clear what was happening and many earlier cultures were terrified by the loss of the life-giving sun – so they created their own set of mythos to describe and understand the events. It’s a beautiful complex tapestry of magic and godly interference, and The Washington Post wanted to bring it to life so that our contemporaries could understand it. They asked Nathan Fox to do it. But together Nathan and WaPo wanted to take it a step further. Instead of just showing us pictures of these stories, WaPo commissioned Nathan to create an immersive 3D experience. Using your phone or clicking around the web-based 3D environment allows you to experience how nearly a dozen cultures imagined what happening – and in some cases what they decided to do about it.
Nathan’s immersive experience is paired with a comprehensive explanation of his illustrations, but if you dive into it, you’ll also hear a narration allowing you to pick out each story and see how they weave together or at least share space. In Nathan's illustration we see the Pomo's great cranky bear, the head of a demon beheaded by Vishnu, and the Chippewa's flaming arrows sent to rekindle the sun. Plus many more, in all their flaming, violent, and popular glory.
So, today, while you’re looking through your pinhole eclipse viewer, confident that the sun will return just a few minutes later, remember for a moment the uncertainty our ancestors felt in seeing the sun vanish and take a moment for thanks that our futures are at least slightly more certain.
Technological Wizardry with Nathan Fox
Most of us don’t know how to code; we don’t know the basic building blocks of what makes technology work for us. Truthfully, it is a language all its own, and to those of us that don’t speak it it’s a mystery. There’s something magical about it. And those who do speak it, those who can write with it and create programs that make our lives easier or battle the viruses that seek to destroy our digital lives, are something magical. That’s the argument that Psychology Today makes about Richard Stallman’s work, and the inspiration that the magazine shared with Nathan Fox when they invited him to illustrate for them.
Stallman has been engaged on a quest to bring freedom and privacy back to the digital world through personal computers and “free” software that is fully transparent so as to ensure it doesn’t spy on us. Much like Radagast the Brown, or Gandalf (mostly when he was Grey), he uses his powers to fight for his version of good while remaining relatively off the grid. Nathan took all of these inspirations in a series that he illustrated for Psychology Today, imagining Stallman as a technological sorcerer.
In one image we see Stallman destroying the digital slavemaker culture and bringing in a more natural idea of what technology can be. In another he overlooks a whole grid from the mountain top, protecting it, barefoot and armed with a staff. One of the signatures of Stallman is that he carries a recorder (the instrument, not a audio recorder) to play at any time. Fox imagines Stallman in a sort of floating meditative bliss, playing the instrument through the extensions of his own focused energies.
It’s not often that we think of technology blended with the purity of a natural wizard or sorcerer, but as our online and digital lives become stickier, murkier, and more secret we need an order of magic men like Stallman to help protect us and thanks to Nathan Fox we know what that could look like.
Nathan Fox Goes Deep for The Village Voice
Whether or not you believe climate change is real, NYC is facing a host of issues around rising sea levels. Back in 2012 the city braced for impact as Hurricane Sandy gave it a thrashing, and recovery is still in process. Residents recently learned that one of the busiest subways in the five boroughs is set to close for a year and a half to clean up the mess left behind by Sandy and it, understandably, has left riders confused and angry. But as The Village Voice tells us, this is just the beginning. For their cover story, ‘NYC vs. The Sea,’ they needed an image that would encapsulate the desperation and tapped Nathan Fox to do it.
Nathan brings a reference to 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea in a visualization of the L train being eaten by the sea. A giant squid holds a train car in its clutches, ready to consume our good nature and our feeble attempts to live so close to the abyss. As millions of riders are stranded by the MTA’s closing of this vital line, we’re literally at the mercy of the rising seas and Nathan crystalizes the point perfectly on this cover. It’s a savage battle against rising tides and one we need to understand or risk falling into a murkier, wetter future.
Nathan Fox Brings the Future to Light with Sports Illustrated and Wired
It doesn’t look like Americans are going to give up on their Superbowl for a long, long time and as far as Wired and Sports Illustrated are concerned, they’re going to give it at least another fifty years. In both of their latest issues they asked Nathan Fox to imagine what a Superbowl in 2066 would look like, creating a space for this artist to adapt our way of life to a not-so-distant future. Both Wired and Sports Illustrated are owned by different companies, and common wisdom would tell us that in the competitive world of publishing they maybe shouldn’t work together very easily. But Nathan said it was a fluid creative process. “It worked out rather seamlessly,” says Nathan. “The way we had initially set it up it really worked out for both publications. It was a really enjoyable experience.” Since there would be no working politics it all came down to creative exploration, something that Nathan dove right into.
As far as we were able to find out, Nathan has not actually visited 2066 to see what the Superbowl is like in the future, so he has to invent the visual identity on his own. As Nathan explains, the future will be different from current day, but not in ways that we may conventionally think. “I approached it as a future/near future kind of SciFi approach so that a lot of things are grounded in what we know now,” explains Nathan. “Even now, things like mobile phones and portable devices and tablets and all that were SciFi when I was a kid and that wasn’t that long ago. I tried to take a lot of that into consideration, so it was about elevating it further and taking where we are now with a little bit of an advancement. Moving forward.” Things like televisions and mobile devices are developing at a faster and faster rate, so the future would reflect that. But objects like forks and wine glasses that have gone relatively untouched more than a century aren’t going to change much in the next 50 years. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – just redesign it,” Nathan says with a laugh.
If you’re unfamiliar with Nathan’s work the first thing that may jump out about this small collection of pieces about the Superbowl is his intense use of color. Coincidentally this comes from his own early interaction with the digital sphere and SciFi storytelling. “Like anybody else, I grew up on cartoons and video games. That intensity, especially in terms of the RGB screens, a lot of the saturated and oversaturated and over energized is in the media that I grew up on,” says Nathan. “Every now and then there would be something that was just so horribly done it was beautiful. That kind of stuff I collected.” That tension is something that Nathan thrives on and draws from creating tiny visually conflicts that end up pulling in the audience. The future will look alien to us today anyway, even if it is in the details.
Nathan Fox Swings for the Masters
Nathan Fox is something of a golf player. He has a decent swing and can hit it straight but, as he says, his short game "sucks." His skill with clubs wasn't going to lead him to The Masters, the ultimate golf contest in the world, so luckily his skill with pen and ink did. Golf Digest commissioned Nathan as their illustrator to bring the experience of The Masters to life, painting his way through his time on the course so that anyone who couldn't be there could understand what the official photos couldn't quite express.
This kind of journalistic artistry comes out of a long tradition that Nathan is aware, respectful, and in admiration of. He knows and studies his predecessors and relishes the experience. "I kind of love drawing on location. It was pretty awesome to be there," says Nathan. "I’ve always been a fan of on location artists and storytellers." Mentioning names like Sacco, Feliks Topolski, and Lautrec, he's continuing a long line of this work. And it's important, not just for the sake of the discipline, but photography is prohibited at the event. ("You can’t take photographs, you can get kicked out," says Nathan. "Even though I caught people sneaking it every now and then.") Since the only photography at the event is the official imagery, communicating the experience can be limited. By bringing an illustrator the event can be represented in a way that is more contextual and visceral.
The breadth of environment was a little bit more than Nathan expected. In order to capture the whole experience he found himself working in ways he didn't anticipate. "I think being there compared to what I could find online: it had a huge effect on my color palate, and some of the choices I made," Nathan explains. Not only did he shift the colors he would have used, he shifted his working process slightly. For this assignment he found himself working directly off his sketches, which is aytpical for his process. But for an assignment as unique as this, habits are going to shift. “They send you there to kind of soak it in and put it into the work, but I just brought a ton of ink and paper with me and painted the entire time and did some massive studies while on location," says Nathan. Those studies transformed directly into the final pieces and we've included some of the sketches and original paintings so you can see the development process.
Nathan Fox Finds Stories Everywhere
Nathan Fox does a lot of work in comics so he was a natural choice for the animated spots for AMC’s “Comic Book Men.” AMC opted to use secret identities and the aesthetics from comic series to advertise the upcoming season of the reality show that follows the daily operations and general hijinx of Kevin Smith’s New Jersey comic book shop. Nathan had never worked on an animation spot like this before which presented challenges and requirements that were beyond what normally is demanded by static 2D compositions.
Luckily for him, there was a lot of creative leniency. Each of the five gentlemen followed in the show are represented in the spot, and then are revealed to have their own super powers. A lot of the visual storytelling, and even the specifics of those revealed powers were up to the creative team, including Nathan. “Outside of the general ideas in the brief, the costume, the colors, the detail, were all made on our own, and were on our artistic end to define,” Nathan says. “It was cool having some freedom and collaboration to do visualization.” Nathan worked closely with Nick Flaherty on these ideas and executions to help fulfill the vision as fully and creatively as possible.
That transformation of regular, everyday person into superhero is exactly what drew Nathan to this project. In general, superheroes aren’t what he spends his energy on. “Superheroes are not my real forte,” he puts it simply. “But, in terms of this project I think it was really fun to take some real life characters and metamorphose them into crazy superheroes that were going to get animated was a lot of fun.” For a lot of the canonical characters, superpowers are discovered, or gifted, as a metaphor for what that character was lacking, or needed in their life. But Nathan finds there’s already a rich well to draw from in every day experiences.
Where the stories of superheroes use those metaphors to make comments on society and the human experience, Nathan looks to that experience directly. “All those people that we pass on an every day basis have stories to tell, they all come from some place. Good, bad, or otherwise. That uniqueness has always perked my curiosity,” he explains. But it goes even a little deeper than that. “A lot of us are odd and unique and twisted and private or weird or shy or whatever. That in and of itself in terms of character and humanity and identity, all of that: that’s always been an interest to me.” Why embellish or inflate when the story is already deep enough? Nathan explains, “It really just comes down to what the story is and how you want to move, engage, or immerse people.”
Skrillex by Nathan Fox Leads Rolling Stone's Record Review
Nathan Fox supplied Rolling Stone with a detailed portrait of Dubstep star Skrillex for its latest Record Review section.
It "was beyond what I was expecting from him," said the magazine's art director, Matthew Cooley. "We have worked [together] on and off through the years on other projects, but this illustration was really well received by both the editorial and art staff at the magazine – not to say the others weren't! I really like working with illustrators who can come up with amazing conceptual ideas that heighten their work ... [Nathan's] heavy line work and bold use of color makes every piece have an energy that just explodes. I can't wait to work with him again in the not too distant future."
Fox's idea to overlay Skrillex's profile with an extraterrestrial's visage came from playing with Alien Ride, a mobile game released ahead of "Recess," the musician's first full LP. "Inspired by the graphics and design, I took a bunch of screen captures for reference and started to see the piece coming together," Fox noted. "The app reminded me of my favorite video games from the eighties and nineties and their heroic covers ... and, oddly enough, the alien on the 'Recess' cover seemed to resemble Skrillex in a way, at first glance. The three lines on its head looked like his hair hanging down across his face and so on." He then listened to the album and it all clicked. "Overlaying Skrillex and the alien created this symbiotic creature that fit with the album and app; the two share the same mind, consciousness, and nervous and circulatory systems."
The artist used Photoshop from start to finish, a departure from his usual process, calling the project "a perfect opportunity to enter this electronic world and achieve the texture and feel of something completely digital." He juxtaposed color effects and mixed layers to reach the final composition. "I really responded to the imaginative space created by the album and app," Fox remarked. "It was a great exploration."
(At right: the final version and initial sketch.)
Nathan Fox Revisits Janet Jackson at the Super Bowl for ESPN
ESPN The Magazine enlisted Nathan Fox to portray a crucial Super Bowl moment for its Music Issue: the nine-sixteenths of a second that halftime-watchers happened upon Janet Jackson's breast, now a decade ago. The illustration, which ran alongside an article titled "In the Beginning, There Was a Nipple," turned out "incredibly well," remarked ESPN art director Keir Novesky. "[Nathan] has a way of pushing boundaries while still remaining true to the inherent subject matter of the piece. Working with someone that has the ability to find that middle ground is always a top priority of mine, and Nathan definitely has it."
Fox wanted to draw a "jarring, sensual, and voyeuristic shot," as he described it. "I thought it would be interesting to concentrate on the reaction from her mouth, and her recoiling in front of the sparks in the background." He also played with anatomy: "I wanted to make things a bit off, so that it appears correct, but there's something slightly upsetting about it that's hard to place – that's why I selected that specific pose and grip with her fingers melding into her flesh. The viewer's eye can't rest; it has to bounce around."
He created the piece digitally and paid special attention to the different layers. "I did an ink-wash texture for her outfit and a few other elements, so I scanned those in and merged it all," Fox noted.
Nathan Fox Signing at Midtown ComicsNathan Fox will be at Midtown Comics Downtown tonight signing copies of his new book Pigeons From Hell. Fox illustrated the book authored by Joe R. Lansdale. Pigeons From Hell is a fresh take on a short story of the same name about an old deserted plantation mansion haunted by ghostly pigeons. The story was written by Robert E. Howard in 1934 and published after his death in 1938.
The event is part of the store's monthly Graphic Novel book club. Fox will discuss the new book and participate in a live demo in addition to signing copies. Customers who mention the book club will get 25% off their purchase of the book at the register.
The event starts at 6:30 pm and seating is limited. For more information, visit Midtown Comics' website.
See more of Nathan Fox's illustrations here.
B&A Artists Illustrate Bottles for 1800 Tequila Again
Nathan Fox, Tara McPherson, Ilovedust, Kai and Sunny, Stephen Bliss, and Sandro Tchikovani collaborate with 1800 Tequila on the fourth edition of the Essential Artists series. The five B&A artists and Tchikovani created diverse designs inspired by Mayan culture, Aztec mythology, and Mexican heritage for the collectible bottles. The series represents a modern blend of artistry and quality.
The latest series will launch tonight in New York City. 1800 Tequila has partnered with SPIN on the launch that will feature a special performance by Wavves, who recently appeared on the magazine's cover. Following tonight's launch, the limited edition run of 1800 bottles will be available to purchase in high-end liquor stores across the country.
The designs above from l-r are by Sandro Tchikovani, Stephen Bliss, Nathan Fox, Ilovedust, Tara McPherson, Kai and Sunny.
Nathan Fox and Tristan Eaton at Comic Con
Nathan Fox and Tristan Eaton showed at Comic Con, last week in San Diego, CA. The annual convention showcases comic books, science fiction/fantasy and film/television as well as horror, animation, toys, video games, and anime. It took place this past Thursday through Sunday at the San Diego Convention Center.
Nathan Fox attended the convention to support several projects. He sold original art, books, prints, sketches, and did commissions at the Artists Alley table. For two days, Wednesday and Friday, he signed copies of Stay Tuned!, a 30 postcard book, at the Chronicle Books table. He spoke on the Creepy & Eerie: Comics That Still Scare You panel on Thursday. Additionally, Fox is part of a new creative team for the series Haunt. He joined the rest of the team: creator Todd McFarlane, and Joe Casey for a group signing on Thursday. A limited-edition litho, created by Fox, was also given away at the Haunt signing. Fox says the signing created a lot of new fans for the series. Finally, Boom! displayed the cover art, logo, and poster print design that Fox created for the new series "Key of Z" with the Evil Ink Kids. T-shirts and prints were made from the poster design in addition to harmonicas engraved with the logo, modeled off the harmonica used by the lead character.
Eaton attended the convention to promote two recent ventures. On Thursday he signed copies of his book The 3D Art Book at the High Fructose booth. The first ten guests to purchase a book received a free 3D art print, "The Geisha and the Swan," (below) by Eaton. Buff Monster and Travis Louis, who contributed to the book, were also on hand to sign copies. On Friday, Eaton joined Plastic City to release limited-edition prototypes of their collaboration, the B-Bot action figure. The action figure, which comes in two editions, Blank or Mascot, is based on Eaton and Peter Cortez's hit iPhone app. It is scheduled for a wide release this December.
See more of Nathan Fox's work here.
See more of Tristan Eaton's work here.
B&A Artists Illustrate Music's Greats for Rolling StoneRolling Stone has updated their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time in a special collector's edition. The original list was published in 2004 as part of Rolling Stone's yearlong celebration of the 50th birthday of rock & roll. For the new 2011 edition, Olaf Hajek, Nathan Fox, and Chris Kasch contributed illustrations of 7 of the artists on the list.
Hajek's colorful and vibrant illustrations depict funk, soul, and rock music collective Parliament and Funkadelic (#58), doo-wop group The Drifters (#81), rock band Talking Heads (#100), and rock and soul band Sly and the Family Stone (#43). Chris Kasch illustrated rock bands AC/DC and The Kinks (#65), while Nathan Fox drew heavy metal band Metallica (#61) in his signature graphic novel style.
The 100 Greatest Artists of All Time is on sale now.
Nathan Fox, Rod Hunt Illustrate AIDES' Latest Campaign
Nathan Fox and Rod Hunt have created illustrations for AIDES' latest campaign to promote safe sex. AIDES is the first French HIV/AIDS prevention non-profit organization. Their latest campaign aims to promote safe sex, awareness and behavioral changes through innovative and provocative imagery.
Fox created a comic strip inspired by the swamp thing Creature from golden age comics. Fox's creature is shown demonstrating that wearing a condom makes one not a monster. Fox's illustration appeared recently in the Bay Area Reporter, a San Francisco-based newspaper for the LBGT community. Hunt's illustration is of a "World of Sex" theme park. The tagline reads "The safer you play, the longer you stay."
See the full illustration by Nathan Fox here. See Rod Hunt's illustration here.
Artist: Nathan Fox, Rod Hunt
Agency: Goodby, Silverstein & Partners
Art Buyer: Britt Gardner
Nathan Fox Tells the Story of Nike Athletic West
Last week Nike launched its Athletics West microsite to honor the original Athletics West Running Club. Founded in the 1970s, it comprised of a dozen runners that trained in Eugene, Oregon under the sponsorship of Blue Ribbon Sports, known simply today as Nike. With their unorthodox methods, the Athletics West would establish the groundwork for track and field performance in America.
Nathan Fox worked with agency Opolis, creating the illustrations for the Athletics West microsite. The illustrations were then animated for the website and the teaser trailer. Fox's images capture the intensity and passion of the athletes. The full story of the Athletics West can be found here.
Producer Pam Siffert
Creative: Lael Tyler
Artwork: Nathan Fox>
Nathan Fox at Comic Con
Nathan Fox designed a custom 10 x 40 foot installation for a vehicle display at the Horton Plaza Mall during Comic-Con in collaboration with WIRED and Subaru. Says Lindsay Speros, Senior Integrated Marketing Manager at WIRED and WIRED.COM, "The display at the Horton Plaza Mall was a HUGE success and attracted thousands of people." WIRED also hosted the VIP WIRED Cafe in the Omni Palm Terrace that featured Nathan's custom mural and a contest to win an original 16 x 20" Nathan Fox work of art. Fox signed posters of his mural for guests and fans at the VIP WIRED cafe.
Fox also had a table in artist's alley, debuting the new Fluorescent Black graphic novel through Heavy Metal magazine. He signed copies at his booth as well as Heavy Metal's. An exclusive hardcover version was available through pre-order that sold out quickly. This is Fox's 3rd year exhibiting at Comic Con. Says Fox, "It's always a pleasure to meet fans and critics alike and this year there were more than ever so I am glad for the great turnout."
Visitors check out what's underneath the hood of the Subaru WRX STI
The special hardcover version of Fluorescent Black.
Comments Fox, "Fluorescent Black as a book has been growing legs in the Heavy Metal magazine for the past 3 years so we were really amazed that subscribers and first time readers were there waiting for it or stopping by to make sure they picked it up before they left the con. It was a blast to see how may people enjoyed it and how far reaching it got through the magazine and pre-sales."
Fluorescent Black by Nathan Fox
Nathan Fox signing Fluorescent Black>
B&A Artists in Communication Arts Illustration Annual 51Communication Arts juror and design director of ALM Media Joan Ferrell says, "Illustration still has the power to communicate, inspire and, yes, sell in a more innovative and effective way, and I don't think that's going to change anytime soon." Bernstein & Andriulli artists Josh Cochran, Dan Craig, Nathan Fox, John Hendrix, Kristian Olson, and Yuko Shimizu continue to inspire and innovate. Their work appears in the 51st issue of the Communication Arts Illustration Annual.
Pictured above: Nathan Fox
Art Director: Brian Anstey
Designer: Jackie Blum
Client: Entertainment Weekly
"Heroes and Villains" debates whether the effect of pop icons are positive, negative, or somewhere in between.
Illustrator: Yuko Shimizu
Art Director: SooJin Buzelli
Client: Asset International
Shimizu created a series of illustrations for the covers and interiors of PlanSponsor and PlanAdviser investment magazines. Shimizu's wrap-around cover illustration for Ryunosuke Akutagawa's The Beautiful and the Grotesque is also honored in the "Unpublished" category. The novel will be published July 2010.
Illustrator: Kristian Olson
Art Director: Jay Dea
Design Director: Joan Ferrell
Client: The American Lawyer/ALM Media
Olson's series looks at five emerging legal markets - Abu Dhabi, Brazil, India, Russia, and Singapore.
Illustrator: John Hendrix
Art Director: Matthew Lenning
Client: American Illustration
Hendrix's drawing appears on the front and back cover of American Illustration 28, a publication containing winning works from a jury selection.
Illustrator: Dan Craig
Art Director: Colin Jones
Ad Agency: BBDO London
Craig gave fish a posh life in an advertisement, poster, and bus stop image promoting a high-end line of frozen fish. The tagline reads "A Better Class of Fish." His advertisement for the Grand Victoria Casino "You Rule" also appears.
Illustrator: Josh Cochran
Art Director: Sonia Chaghaztbanian, Lauren Rille
Client: Simon & Schuster
Cochran captures unicorns and zombies at war for the cover of a young adult book of short stories that will be released September 2010.
Nathan Fox Illustrates Stirs Up Controversy in New York Magazine
In the latest issue of New York Magazine, the cover story details the dissension that went on behind the scenes of John Edwards' camp during the 2008 presidential election. Titled "Saint Elizabeth and the Ego Monster," the story is an excerpt from the book Game Change by New York Magazine's John Heilemann and Time magazine's Mark Halperin.
New York Magazine called on Nathan Fox to tell the story in the style of a graphic novel. Fox's images illustrate some of the most appalling moments in the book, revealing the tawdry side of the carefully crafted image of the presidential candidate and his retinue.
The graphic representations of John Edwards' infidelity and his wife Elizabeth's angry outbursts have raised impassioned responses. Political blog "The Bag" wrote that the illustrations are a "thoroughly soap opera-style demolition of (Ego Monster) John and (Saint) Elizabeth Edwards."
Jezebel, a blog with a large female audience, commented, "The comic-book art is apt: these characters are drawn in broad strokes and primary colors. Heroes! And villains! And politicians who are - shocker! - not exactly what they seem! Whited sepulchres are always good on a Monday, but there's a lot to be said for shades of gray."
As soon as Fox read the excerpt, he knew he had a "terrifically inflammatory" piece on his hands. The story left him frustrated with politicians and constantly wondering how much of Game Change was based on fact. When it came to editorial pieces, he always tried to remain as objective as possible, but it would be difficult this time due to the very nature of the piece and his own mixed emotions regarding the content.
Says Fox, "The whole thing is a suspension of disbelief to begin with... it's a very weird response when something that is simple in tone and strong in emotion gets put out there, and the debate is started. I wanted to simplify it so that anyone looking at the images could track who the characters were and where they're going; and then once you read the piece you would understand where the characters were in context."
Of the narrative pieces that Fox prepared for New York Magazine, careful editing was done to balance the attention between all of the characters. Specific frames of Elizabeth Edwards or Rielle Hunter were scaled back to prevent placing too much emphasis on one person instead of the whole scandal.
Furthers Fox, "I would've loved to elaborate the imagery - I took out a lot of lines in the faces that would've aged or emoted a stronger visual in terms of emotion."
With a topic as controversial as the no-longer private lives of politicians, there were bound to be varied interpretations of Fox's illustrations. What he saw as boiling down to simplicity, others saw as supercharged with vilification or executed with dramatic gusto. Either way, the illustrations do exactly with what they were meant to do - capture the audience's attention, lure the reader into the story, and letting the words fill in the blanks.
Bernstein & Andriulli Wishes You A Warm and Wonderful Holiday!
2009 is coming to a close and we would like to thank all of our talent, clients, agents, and friends for a wonderful year. A blog was started (which became our homepage), new artists were signed on, and lots of cool projects were carried out. We leave you with this animated video and wish you happy holidays and a happy new year!
The blog will resume January 4th, 2009. Cheers!
Animation and direction by:
12 foot 6
Am I Collective
Sound, Music, and Voice:
Nathan Fox Calls You to One Show EntertainmentOne Show Entertainment is now accepting submissions until December 11th. A division of The One Club, One Show Entertainment "recognizes outstanding creative work in the realm of entertainment, including television programs, films, both documentaries and commercial releases, games and all other forms of electronic and online entertainment." Agency 72andSunny approached Nathan Fox for creating the 2010 call for entries artwork. His narrative style brings an epic car crash to life as the worlds of Hollywood and advertising collide.
The theme of the poster is west coast meets east coast. Director Brett Ratner and advertising executive David Droga collide at the intersection of Hollywood Boulevard and Madison Avenue. Peter Jackson faces off against the Burger King, and Jaws squares off against Scorsese riding an inflatable Alfred Hitchcock. Nathan Fox has assembled a mad mish-mash of industry titans in a frenetic array.
When it came to creating the poster, Fox explains "I draw a lot of inspiration from Hollywood and advertising so it was really fun to collide the two in one concept. Even as a kid growing up the commercials were my favorite part of television. So it was doubly pleasurable to work on this project and give a 'tip-o-the-hat' to all of these icons and characters."
Nathan Fox's illustrations have appeared in The New York Times, Interview, The New Yorker, Rolling Stone, Wired, ESPN Magazine, Mad Magazine, DC Comics and many other publications. He is currently wrapping up graphic novel Fluorescent Black, and starting a new one called Dogs of War for Scholastic. Look for more of his upcoming work in Business Week and Rolling Stone.