The werewolf is a monster that has seemingly reached stagnation in modern horror, with a few exception that stand out above the rest. “Curse” is one of those exceptions. This is the kind of story horror fans crave, offering a unique and intelligent take on a familiar creature.
The art of creating comics is a mystery to most. It’s a long process from script to printed pages. The creators of “Curse”, Michael Moreci, Tim Daniel, and artists Colin Lorimer and Riley Rossmo, offer a rare and compelling behind-the-scenes look of their creative process, showing us everything from scripted pages, to panel breakdowns, to an un-used cover by Riley Rossmo. Think of this as a sort of director’s commentary track for comics.
The final issue of “Curse” hits shops this Wednesday from BOOM! Studios (preview here).
Colin: I always work up the entire book(or in this case my section) in rough layouts to see how it all plays. I usually go through quite a few thumbnail iterations before I settle on the ones as shown here. This gives Michael and Tim a chance to read through the book as a whole and see if they agree with my visual interpretation. It’s a good working process as it means there are no surprises for anyone when the final art is delivered. Once we are all agreed… it’s then on to the inks and then finally, colour.
Colin: Originally I wanted to go with a Red Riding Hood theme. Jaren cloaked in red or trailing blood with a wolf shape or symbol very clearly in frame. After playing around with it, I felt it just didn’t seem to fit with the tone of the story. The image needed to be a little bit more real world rather than of fairytale. Though you can see that the basic idea of the big bad wolf and the line “what big teeth you have” obviously became the main thrust for the final image. Also with Jaren on cover #1 shadowed by the wolf, placing his father in a similar context on #4 brought it full circle and seemed to book-end it nicely.
Riley: I like the idea of the wolf consuming Laney, Metaphorically and literally so I did a comp in black and white that I kind of liked but didn’t love. I thought, “I’ll get reference and fix it”. Also I was on a painting kick so I wanted it painted. In 1 (below) I didn’t like how Laney’s foot sits set in the wolfs jaws and the wolf was not working for me. With 1.2 I tired a quick edit to see if maybe I adjusted Laney’s arm it would work better. It didn’t. Tim and I talked about it and agreed it was a cool concept so I thought I’d give it one more go. When I did 1.3 I tried to make Laney look more natural and the wolf more animated. It kind of works but I still didn’t feel comfortable using it.
Tim: I was doing production and design on Riley’s book, “Bedlam”, and was examining a page where the main character was accosted by two African-American males.
There was a real genuine humanity in the manner in which Riley depicted the characters. There was no exaggeration or caricature of their features. Those few panels went a long way towards informing our choice of how Laney Griffin would appear.