Austin English curates another inspiring collection of work in Windy Corners Magazine #3. The table of contents by Molly Colleen O'Connell is especially eye-grabbing. Along with the opening pages by Lilli Carre, this issue begins with a host of small details to get lost in.
The same could be said for English's Life of Francis book in this issue. Many layers of pattern and shape define English's comics, with large, stylized figures. English hit a good stride in these comics; working with thick black lines adds a moody feel to everything. While his work is usually sentimental and relatable, this issue seemed darker than the rest - perhaps it was the palette, but the subject matter too, seemed to have a gloom over it.
In contrast to the previous darkness, Sakura Maku's comic contribution is bright and saturated. Maku's comic is intriguing in it's storytelling - there is a narrative going on, but many other layers beneath. Each panel could be happening in the present, or in the mind of one of the characters. It seems disjointed at first, but it all comes together into a tale as rich and with as much mystery at the page.
Jason T. Miles then interprets a letter from Jesse McManus to Windy Corner through a comic. Small figures fill each panel. There is not much variation in panel size or style, but it's compelling. A poem collaboration, really. Color and text repeat the poetic vibes~
Next, English reflects on the work of Garth Williams, an illustrator of many popular children's books. While familiar with Williams' work, I've never reflected on its kindness or entertained any enchantment with it. It's good to be reminded of artists that may have fallen by the wayside in childhood memories. The Stuart Little cover by Williams stands out in its motion and usage of line.
Following that is Frank Santoro's appraisal of Garage Band by Italian cartoonist Gipi. The pages that Santoro uses as examples are stunning. I can hardly imagine what the rest of the book looks like because each combination of color and illusion of light is so perfect yet surprising. The story is captivating even when summarized - it's definitely a must read!
Finally, there is an interview with Carol Tyler by Vanessa Davis. Tyler is frank and welcoming in her conversational style, just as her comics are frank and welcoming into her life. It was a pleasure to read about her work and that she lives her life so honestly, not really concerned with offending those that she writes about, but making amends when necessary.
This is the last issue of Windy Corners that Sparkplug has, and it was a good series of three magazines to read! There are so many artists to learn about in each issue.
(80 interior pgs, 6.5″ x 9″, color cover and interior, Sparkplug Books)