On Wednesday I drove up to Boone, NC to hear James Sturm talk about the history of The Center for Cartoon Studies and to check out the exhibit of CCS-related original art at the Turchin Center. The exhibit was organized by my friend comics writer/comics professor Craig Fischer, who you may know from our annual “mega-panels” at HeroesCon. James was a professor at SCAD when I was a student there years ago, so it was great to have an opportunity to catch up with him as well. I’ve been up to visit CCS a few times, but the most recent was in maybe 2006, so it’s been a while.
James’s lecture covered a bit of his comics-making process and then went over the “origin story” of CCS. Afterwards there was a reception in the CCS exhibit hall. Two bits of interesting info that came up in my conversation with James earlier in the day: First, he has not one, but two, forthcoming children’s books from TOON Books. I got a look at a physical copy of one and a PDF of the other. They both look great. Second: In a discussion about what original comics art folks owned, James mentioned that either he or the school (I can’t recall which) has never-seen sample pages that Craig Thompson did for the James Sturm written Fantastic Four series, Unstable Molecules. Apparently Thompson was considered for art on the book before Guy Davis was settled on. The pages include the (in)famous “Johnny Storm masturbating” scene.
Here’s a small handful of pictures from the event: