Noir meets reality

Comic Book Treatment – Arkham Asylum – Grant Morisson & Dave McKean (Laurie Dix)



This is an example of a Comic Book treatment, as opposed to film treatment or any other kind of treatment, it is taken from Grant Morrison’s ‘Batman – Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth’, illustrated by Dave McKean.

This is the final draft, and throughout this treatment there are notes describing how it changed from the original treatment, however we can see here the direct comparison between the written words and the illustrated final product.
It is interesting to note how descriptive the treatment is, written more as a piece of prose than a script, which dictate how the illustrator would respond to the script.

Although our  Noir Comic treatment will differ massively, this is a good start and a useful piece of research to see how the professionals do it.

The illustrations are absolutely beautiful, Dave McKean is one of my favourite artists, and his combination of photorealism and comic illustration (often using photomanipulation techniques) is inspiring. He also has a definite use of colour, as we can see here, he floods everything in blue to represent the night. The illustrations are fuzzy, gritty and highly detailed with a lot of texture, a huge step removed from usual comic book art, which tends to rely on pen and ink, Dave McKean uses photographs, paint, chalk and traditional techniques to illustrate his comics. I would be intrigued to see if I can get anyone who is more of an ‘Artist’ than a ‘Cartoonist’ or ‘Illustrator’ to illustrate one of my comics. I can imagine it would turn out quite different.


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