Noir meets reality

Posts tagged “Philip Hampson

Comic/ Graphic Novel Research Part 6 (Philip Hampson)

This next style is from a comic called Back to basics by Dylan Teague. I feel it combines the styles of The Blue Lily Lawless. With its thick edges and dark bold tone to it gives the distinctive noir look. The detail in the characters is particularly interesting as it shows the emotion of each character. (Figure 1)

Style 6

(Figure 1 Back to basics by Dylan Teague)

This image is from the from the front cover of the book that most of the above images are from Comic art now by Dez Skinn. Unfortunately the artist isn’t credited but I feel it is a perfect example of noir Comic styles. With the bold shadows and Femme Fetal style female character the image has so much character it would make a perfect Graphic novel. (Figure 2)

Front cover

(Figure 2 Comic art now by Dez Skinn (Illustrator unknown)

Figure 1 and 2 from Comic art now  By Dez Skinn


Comic/ Graphic Novel Research Part 5 (Philip Hampson)

This style was what I had planned for my hypothetical 3rd comic. It has very realistic looking characters and almost looks like a photograph. This comic is Echoes of Dawn by Cliff Richards (Figure 1). This is similar to the style I used for a previous project. It was making a point and click game, but we used real photographs for the visuals. I then took these images and edited them in photo shop. The game is called Caedus Mysterium.( Figure 2)

Style 5


(Figure 1 Echoes of Dawn By Cliff Richards)



(Figure 2 Caedus Mysterium. Photography by Fred Iles. Edited by Philip Hampson.

Figure 1 from Comic Art now by Dez Skinn

Film Noir-By Alain silver and James Ursini Research report ( PHilip Hampson)

What most viewers notice when watching a film noir movie are:


Chiaroscuro Lighting. Low-Key lighting, in the style of Rembrandt or Caravaggio, Marks most noirs of the classic period. Shade and light play against each other not only in night exteriors but also in dim interiors shielded from daylight by curtains or venetian blinds. Hard, unfiltered side-light and rim light outline and reveal only a portion of a face to create a dramatic tension all its own. “

{Low-Key lighting and bold shadows is a common attribute of noir film. This is regarded as one of the key features of the style/ genre. This is something I feel Dop Naby Diallo and head of Lighting Roz Dean did an amazing job of in the filming of Johnny Noir. Lighting was something Laurie and me had to really take our time on when colour grading the film. We needed to make sure that we kept the bold shadows especially.} (Pg 18 What is Noir?)


Odd angles. Noir cinematographers favoured low angles for several reasons. Firstly, this angle made the characters rise from the ground in an almost expressionistic manner, giving them dramatic girth and symbolic overtones. In addition, it also allowed the viewer to see the ceiling of the interior settings, Creating even more of a sense of claustrophobia and paranoia, appropriate emotions for the world of noir. High angles could also produce disequilibrium, peering down a stairwell over a flimsy railing or out of a skyscraper window at a city street far below. “

{Odd angles is something I was keen to get into Johnny Noir. The scene when Madeline is explaining to Johnny what shed been up to (after she shoots him) is a shot that I filmed and planned. I felt it gave all the power to Madeline, while putting the audience in the position of Johnny, powerless and weak. I also wanted to create a sense of claustrophobia as it was so close to the characters, wall and floor, and using a shallow focus. A particular high angle I used was for a shot when Madeline and Johnny are walking down stairs, I decided to focus on the street light in front of them to create a slightly fuzzy look to the shot.} .} (Pg 18 What is Noir?)


Moving Camera. For directors like Ophuls and Lang, the camera that slides across a room past an array of foreground clutter or tracks a character through a crowded café had a relentless and fateful quality. When combined with a long take, suspenseful sequences were subtly enhanced.”

{In Johnny Noir we used several moving shots. We even have a shot tracking Johnny through a café. I felt this added to the film by keeping close and personal to the characters, which allowed the audience to feel part of the scene. .} (Pg 19 What is Noir?)


The Urban Landscape. Noir films are most often set in the urban landscape, particularly the cities of Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco. The Metropolis with its circles of light under sidewalk lamps, dim alleyways, a press of shadowy pedestrians and wet, grimy streets is the perfect milieu for the nightmarish events of noir. ”

{We chose specific areas during rece that highlighted these traditional features of noir. Street lamps were a particularly important feature. Luckily there are many locations in Bristol that have these traditional street lamps, which created the lighting and tone to each scene nicely. We got the circular glow from the streetlights very prominently.} .} (Pg 19 What is Noir?)


Flashback and subjective camera. Whether introduced via a ripple effect or simply a smash cut, the past palpably intrudes in film noir via flashback. The flashback can be filtered through a single character’s point of view (Criss Cross) or ostensibly detached and objective (The killing, 1956): seeing the past gives a reality that no amount telling can match”.

{We used a flashback to tell the story in Johnny Noir. This is also the structure I used in my comic Eddie Jones. In the film we also used quick cuts of reality, until revealing at the end that the noir was all in Johnny’s head. } .} (Pg 19 What is Noir?)



Film Noir-By Alain silver and James Ursini

Published 2004

Published by Taschen

USA Los Angeles












Comic/ Graphic Novel Research part 4 (Philip Hampson)

This next style is closer to what I wanted for my comic. This is created in Adobe Photoshop. It gives the images a glossy and bold look with its thick lines and bold shadows. This is from the comic The Blue Lily by Angus Mckie. (Figure 1)

style 4

(Figure 1 Blue Lily By Angus Mckie)

As a comparison here is a section from my comic Eddie Jones illustrated by Lauren Saunders. (Figure 2)

Page 1 prison phil edit Jpeg version


(Figure 2 Eddie Jones By Philip Hampson (Illustrated by Lauren Saunders)

Figure 2 from Comic art now by Dez Skinn


Comic/ Graphic Novel Research part 3 (Philip Hampson)

This is similar to the  style of November By Robert Deas but with black and white colouring. This style has a more traditional noir feel to it due to the strong shadows(Figure 1)(Lawless by Sean Phillips). This is similar to Laurie Dix’s comic Detective Raymond Phillips. (Figure 2)

Style 3


(Figure 1 Lawless by Sean Phillips)

Detective Raymond Phillips style


(Figure 2 Detective Raymond Phillips by Laurie Dix ( Illustrated by Darren Kay)


Figure 1 from Comic art now by Dez Skinn

Comic/ Graphic Novel research part 2 (Philip Hampson

Here is a darker style of Amy Turner’s, which is something that I believe would have created an interesting comic. I’d like to work on a comic with this style in the future. (Figure 1)Amy Style 2

(Figure 1 by Amy turner)

This is another style that interested me. (Figure 2) It has a very distinctive noir feel to it but with colour, possibly closer to the Neo-noir style. I felt that just because the film was black and white, it didn’t meant all the comics had to be.

Style 2

(Figure 2 by Robert Deas called November.)


Figure 1 By Amy Turner from

Figure 2 from Comic art now by Dez Skinn

Comic/ Graphic Novel Research (Philip Hampson)

This is a style I was expecting to get from my second illustrator. Unfortunately my second novel was never started, as the illustrator wasn’t available enough to work on it. Judging by some of her work this is what I would expect. (Figure 1). I feel this style would have worked, it is very different from the others that were created but that was the point of making multiple comics with different styles. We wanted the visual style to compliment the narrative, and the idea of having radically different visual and narrative styles was an interesting concept.This is a comic by Laura Howell called The Bizarre adventures of Gilbert and Sullivan

Style 1

(Figure 1 The Bizarre adventures of Gilbert and Sullivan.)

This is some artwork from my Secondary Illustrator Amy Turner (Figure 2). She has many different styles. Some are much darker/ grittier, while others are bright, colourful and cartoonish.

Amy drawing style 1

(Figure 2. Drawing by Amy Turner)


Figure 1 from Comic art now By Dez Skinn

Figure 2 by Amy Turner from