I read this (which discusses the ad for the never-published second issue of D'Arc Tangent, 1982), and thought, "wow, that is one of the most basic principles behind most of my art."
--from a 2005 interview with Richard J. Arndt, available here (warning: it's a Word file.)There’s one other thing I can’t really explain, just demonstrate, because it happens on the subconscious level. While we were working on the second issue of D’ARC TANGENT, Lucie Chin told me that the reason she liked my comic pages was “the drawing behind the drawings.” When pressed for more detail she said that it was obvious to her that each page had a bigger visual concept, a total image that the panels were just part of, and she said she could prove it by showing how the lines and shapes in different panels connected to it by showing how the lines and shapes in different panels connected to and/or reflected each other. I scoffed. People are programmed by evolution to be pattern-builders, I told her, and she was just inventing a set of perceptions that weren’t really there. Pure coincidence.Then we did the second-issue promo ad and I was forced to eat my words. That ad consisted of six panels that were originally drawn and inked, weeks apart from one another, on six separate pages. We put them together in the form of three nested pairs, each pair linking panels that originally formed the outer edges of two facing pages, like so: 3L-2L-1L-1R-2R-3R.And damn, there it was: Lucie’s “drawing behind the drawing,” plain to see. Shapes and lines and curves and structures that simply could NOT be lining up this way by accident, no way in hell. This forced me to accept that somewhere inside my head these individual panels really were part of a single larger picture…and even though they were done on separate boards, at separate times, my subconscious was keeping track and wouldn’t sign off on any of them, wouldn’t tell me a given panel was finally “finished,” until it matched up to a set of specifications I was utterly unaware of.