Bryan's Fun Stuff
Memories of my favorite holiday.
Artwork from my early years.
I collect a lot of Horror Comic Books. They are easily my favorites. I will take skeletons, werewolves, vampires, swamp monsters, and undead corpses over super-heroes anyday.
The best horror comics ever made were the E.C. Horror Comics of the 1950s (Tales From the Crypt; The Haunt of Fear; The Vault of Horror). I have managed to get the (reprinted) hardcover boxed sets of all these, and just treasure the hell out of them. They are most inspirational for me!
Im also naturally a fan of Horror Comics from the 1970s and early 80s - books like Bernie Wrightsons Swamp Thing, and Gene Colans Tomb of Dracula, plus all those great Horror Anthology comics like House of Secrets, House of Mystery (again, with wonderful Wrightson cover illustrations). I collected most of these cheap because they came out when I was a kid. Or I found them in back-issue bins as a teenager, when they were still fairly recent and therefore inexpensive. Luckily I had sense enough to take good care of them.
As an adult (if you want to call me that) I have collected a few genuine antique comics from the Pre-Code horror era of the 1950s. A lot of these titles were created by publishers cashing in on the trend E.C. Comics started - but many of them are equally well-drawn and every bit as fun.
Pre-Code Horror Comics are hard to find, especially if you want them in good condition, and can be a bit expensive to acquire. But I love these creepy old things. Since these are the genuine antiques from my collection I thought I would show them off here.
Certainly the most significant book in my collection is Eerie Comics #1, which was printed in 1947. This book pre-dates the famous E.C. titles, and is considered by comics historians to be the first true horror comic book ever published.
Like most artists, I watch a LOT of movies. Naturally, my favorite genre is Horror. I am not picky about Horror films. Whether they are serious or silly, new or old, domestic or foreign, I seem to find something I like about almost all of them. Put any kind of monster in a movie and let it eat a few people and you've basically got me by the heartstrings. American Horror films work best for me, especially the Universal classics of the 1930s and '40s, and the more modern horrors that came out in the gory 1970s and '80s when I was a kid. European Horror Films are also wonderful. Especially the Italian Horror Films. I love 'em all.
My immediate second favorite genre is Crime movies. I tend to be much pickier about these. My favorite Crime movies are those from the American Film Noir era, which started around 1938 and ended in the mid '50s. I like lots of other types of films too, but Horror and Crime are tops for me.
I listen to lots of music while I draw. Eventually I plan on filling this section with the best albums from a range of different groups that I enjoy, but for now I'll just start by focusing on my number one favorite.
My favorite band in the world is Skinny Puppy. I first heard their music on - (I swear I am not making this up)- Halloween night, 1987. Me and a friend had finished scaring little kids for the night, and headed back to his house for food or something. He wanted me to hear this new song that had just come out. He had heard it somewhere, bought the cassette, and had a feeling I would like it.
That song was the extended remix of Assimilate, from the Chainsaw single. I didn't just like it. It blew my mind. It sounded like theme music from a horror film soundtrack, set to a beat. I'll not soon forget the fist time I heard those deep, cello-like synthesizers, the rhythmic sound effects of dogs barking... And the garbled voice of Nivek Ogre, who sounded like a maniac raving in a dungeon cell. I bought that single, and spent the next few months scouring the underground record stores of Dayton, Ohio, consumed with a need to hear everything this band had ever recorded.
Skinny Puppy actually started in 1982, and had their first real release around 1985, so I am proud that I "caught on" so early in their career. I have stuck with them and collected everything they've done, ever since. Skinny Puppy is my favorite high-octane imagination fuel, and the majority of my comics and horror artwork have been created while listening to them. They are one of my greatest creative inspirations.