Returning to the roots of the graphic novel: Doc Talos and the illuminated Books of William Blake

In our May 8 Forbidden Pulp blog, we explored the process of creating a new kind of novel/graphic novel hybrid. Instead of the sequential panel art format of most graphic novels, the Talos Saga was created using a fusion of traditional narrative book-style text formatting, and fully painted art. While strikingly different from the visual novel structures of today, it goes back to classical roots.

William Blake 1757-1827, using processes mastered through his work as a printer, also fused text and art to create his illuminated manuscripts, which were visionary, prophetic works filled with their own unique cosmology and philosophies, but also deeply moving evocations of human aspiration and dreams.

Carrying forward those techniques from the 18th/19th century to the 21st, artist Iason Ragnar Bellerophon and I strove to create illuminated manuscripts again, this time with the goal of blending modern pulp fiction to powerful painted art.

Here is a selection of images from the Talos books as they were being created…a powerful testament to the aspiration of visionary entertainment.

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