I have ALWAYS loved to doodle, cartoon and draw things- even when no good at it…it FELT good, in some inexplicable way! But even MORE mysterious was how it affected OTHERS! They’d RAVE about my drawings, as they do even now- and I am not even CLOSE to being as good as Ditko, Kirby, and the lesser artists (heh!)
Just what IS it about art that has such a power over us? Many have been killed over it, fortunes are spent on a small piece of canvas, illustration board- and even just PAPER!
ONE thing is certain to ME, though; the sheer nostalgia! When reading a comic book that I read as a kid, I’m suddenly 9 years old again, walking down the dirt path between huge oak trees in Orlando Florida in the early 60s, sunlight glittering patterns of the leaves on the comic pages as I walk, a slight, cool breeze flows gracefully over my body, I hear the birds singing- and feel the sting of one of the damned mosquitos biting!
Then the obvious: The ‘Feel’ of the story, the emotions captured and often exaggerated, the starling vision of the artist’s imagination- as he or she sees the creatures, landscapes or illusions!
OH, ALL RIGHT! So it’s NOT a Mystery! Butchagotta admit it was fun THINKING about it, don’t you!
How wonderful the world of older comics is!
Mike the Mad Artist
Don’t forget that I have OTHER blogs posting my favorite old comic books:
At about 17 years old, all my buddies ridiculed me for reading and collecting comic books- and, damnit, I gave IN to the peer pressure- GIVING all my comics away (not only old DCs- but the very first Marvel super-hero comics (the only book I never had was Amazing Fantasy 15)- all with a tiny stamp on the first page reading: “Read and approved by Mike McDonald”…
After getting married (now about 21 years old), my wifey and I were walking down a sidewalk ( people used to DO that in times past!) in an older section of Orlando, Fl, when we passed a ‘Mom- and -Pop’ Grocery Store. (Those were ancient little stores owned by a married couple- tiny little stores, where you could sit and visit with the owner, telling jokes and tales, and neighbors would also come in and join! Wonderful times!)
In the window was a small sign, reading “Books, Magazines, and Comic Books- HALF PRICE! And I almost ignored it – BUUUT THIS grabbed my attention by the throat-
I looked at my drop-dead gorgeous wife and stammered: “SURELY they don’t mean only 5 cents!!!!!!!!” Trying to walk in what would appear a calm manner, I walked up to where the comics were, and felt a EUPHORIA I had never experienced before; not only were there my very favorite of favorites “Mystery in Space” (this copy which I USED to have) but some I only DREAMED of finding- and many MORE- Marvel, DCs and others!
Gulping, I snatched them ALL up, and tried with every fiber of my being to hide my anxiety: was he going to charge collector prices?????? If so, I was prepared to babble every excuse imaginable (including the REAL one: I didn’t HAVE it!) as to why I couldn’t buy them- but the old man rang up something like 8 dollars- for my huge stacks of priceless comics !!!!!
I was once again- and forever more a Comic Book Collector!