MAPS AND LEGENDS - 5
Back again for another installment. Just passed the halfway point (though I reserve the right to do one more with a subject that *isn't* on the map, but certainly informed QUEEN OF NO TOMORROWS.
Christian Death flyer
Sure, Christian Death are just about the right time and place, but they don't show up in QONT. Though they would have been right at home at the Last Prayer club in its pages. I snagged this image as an expression of the cut-up and Xerox off approach of underground flyers at the time. And sure, I try and replicate that in photoshop now. Unfortunately, you can't just do that at your local Kinko's any more. The copies just come out too clean now. But there was a time that the art was transformed and re-rendered with xerography, and the machine would spit them out hot and you had in your hands the ability to get the word out to everyone. Gutenberg was a piker, when you got down to it.
As with the above, there's no explicit goths of any gender in the pages of QONT. There's a pair of twins working the door at the Last Prayer that might fit the bill, though. All that said, it's a great cultural touchstone to work with. Honestly, I underplayed this in the book, and if it ever makes it into comic pages or onto a screen, it'll be something I work with a little more deeply. But there's a lot to be said about choosing your own face to show the world. Oh yeah, this was originally a look I was going to have Ariela, the Queen, wearing, but decided it was too severe a thing to have as her primary image. That and I wasn't in a hurry to bog down the reader with detail. Again, if this story ever makes it into a visual presentation, this the sort of touch that I'll definitely use more of.
Cocteau Twins – TREASURE/flyer
At turns ethereally beautiful or grindingly harsh, the Cocteau Twins were a band who made a pretty huge impact on me as their albums started to filter over to the US in the middle eighties. TREASURE was the one I ended up listening to the most, having paid full import price for it in 1988, which I think would be the equivalent of almost forty bucks now (never mind my earning power back then which was basically nonexistent.) If you want to reach for the sound of Dreamless, who play live and do a radio set in the pages of QONT, imagine the harsher side of Cocteau Twins, more "Musette and Drums" and the like. And don't get me started on the design sense of Vaughan Oliver, who did the design for the Cocteaus' label, 4AD records. Just a huge influence and one of my favorite albums of all time. Of all time.
Eastern Columbia Building again
This spooky version of the Eastern Columbia came from a shot I took earlier in 2018, just before dawn as I wandered up and down Broadway. It's a pretty perfect photograph, with the dreamlike tower transformed into something much more ominous and vast, where the top touches sunlight but the ground floor is forever in shadow. Watching the light change across the planes of buildings along streets and boulevards is one of the great pleasures of cities, one that I don't really get enough of.
If memory serves, this was originally hung on a florist along Olive Ave in Burbank (the florist is still there, as is some of the original neon.) This piece hangs in the Museum of Neon Art in Glendale, which is, quite unsurprisingly, one of my favorite places to visit. If you've ever visited my tumblr or regular blogging, you've seen a bit of this already. As for deeper meaning, there's not much, though I am conscious of the skill it takes to render objects down in the abstraction of neon and still have them be memorable and stick. As with vector-graphics games, it's all about the lines bounding space and the suggestion of form and detail which leads to success, not the rendering of every single detail.