Tuesday, November 30, 2010

CulturePOP Photocomix: Matthew O'Brien


I first met Matthew O'Brien a few years back when he had written a book called Beneath The Neon, and I was sent to Las Vegas to cover him for an airline magazine. He gave my wife and I a tour of the drainage tunnels under Las Vegas and needless to say that experience was one of my more memorable assignments.

The mag ran one photo out of the many I shot, so I recently had the notion of turning the shoot into Photocomix. I got back in touch with Matt, he was game and we did an interview to create the text.

See it here - http://activatecomix.com/104-17-1.comic

Learn more about Beneath The Neon and Matt's new creative nonfiction collection about the seedy side of Vegas, My Week At The Blue Angel at www.beneaththeneon.com.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Matthew O'Brien - CulturePOP Preview


I met author Matthew O'Brien a few years back when he gave my wife and I a tour of the drainage tunnels under Las Vegas. He had written a book about his experiences, Beneath The Neon, and I was covering him for an airline magazine. The mag ran one photo out of the many I shot, so I recently had the notion of turning the shoot into Photocomix. I got back in touch with Matt, he was game and we did an interview.

Look for Matthew O'Brien: Underworld soon at ACT-I-VATE.com.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Graphic NYC site update.

Art Spiegelman: Still Movin' with Comix


Art Spiegelman, creator of Maus, Breakdowns and more finally gets the GRAPHIC NYC treatment. Yes, I did photograph him over two years ago, but Christopher recently sat down to interview him, so the two elements of our project have finally merged.

Terry Moore: 4 Color Portrait

My portrait and short bio for Terry Moore, creator of Strangers In Paradise and Echo.

CUBA: My Revolution exhibition and artist's talk

I report on Inverna Lockpez and Dean Haspiel's artist talk and exhibition for Cuba: My Revolution.

James Sturm: Modern Storytelling in a Period Setting

James Sturm of The Golumn's Mighty Swing and the recent Market Day in the GNYC Profile.

BIG announcement for this long-running project soon!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Neil Gaiman Sandman author photo

It was a year ago when I received a request from DC/Vertigo comics Executive Editor Karen Berger to use my portrait of author Neil Gaiman for the new tradepaperback editions of all 12 volumes of the acclaimed Sandman series. I was very excited by the request.

Sandman was a series I began reading when I was in college, and when I look back on my own work from that time, the influence it had on me is unmistakable. Also, while I never fell away from reading comics, it helped to make me excited about them again. I think the book had that effect on a lot of people.

The portrait of Neil was taken back in April '08, during an intermission of his reading for the CBLDF at NY Comic-Con. I only had five minutes. I'd long wanted to meet Neil, but given the time constrictions, I focused on getting the shot, hoping I'd get another chance to chat with him some time in the future.

The shoot took place "backstage" in the bowels of the Javits Center. The photo seen here was originally shot in front of a gray concrete wall - the only available option. It wasn't until over a year later when I found a background which felt right to me, and once layered and merged, I was finally able to deem it "finished."

I was told by Karen, "Neil loves the photo, but doesn't remember what it was taken for." That was no surprise to me, given the "environment" was changed.

In any case, I'm very proud to have my work associated with the great Neil Gaiman and his creation, The Sandman.


The New Yorker


I'm very pleased to announce a photo of mine appears in the Nov. 22 issue of The New Yorker Magazine. The portrait of fellow photographer Yana Toyber was initially shot back in 2005 for The Brooklynites and was one of my favorites from the book. The photo (page 117) is used to illustrate a fiction piece called Assimilation, by author E.L. Doctorow.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

CulturePOP Photocomix: Rachel Kramer Bussel

Culture POP: Photocomix Profiles of Real-Life Characters is all-new today. I've been working on this week's epic installment since last August. My subject is Rachel Kramer Bussel, writer of many things, including erotica. Click and you'll find a Photocomix profile on Rachel, but within the core of it, is my adaptation Vegas Treat, of a short story of Rachel's found in the just released Bondage Erotica 2011, a book edited by Rachel as well.

I was excited to work on Rachel's short story because I've been wanting to try my hand on a fictional work, rather than a "real-life profile." Since Rachel's writing feels so visual to me, this was the perfect opportunity for me to experiment.

See it here - http://activatecomix.com/104-16-1.comic

I thank Rachel for trusting me to adapt her writing to comix script and then to photocomix. She trusted me to do it justice and gave me no interference or criticism.

In creating this big, experimental piece, I received help from a number of sources, so many thanks to -

Walshmetalworks.com for use of the bondage bed.
EdenFatasys.com for supplying the props.
Elena & Welland Scripps for posing.

Best Bondage Erotica 2011 is available now from Cleis Press - www.BestBondageErotica.com

Comments welcome and appreciated, as always. Hope you enjoy it!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Tim Hall - CulturePOP preview


I took this shot of soon-to-be CulturePOP subject, writer Tim Hall a while back as his author photo. Tim is the author of such books as Full of it: The Birth, Death, and Life of an Underground Newspaper, Half Empty, One Damn Thing After An­other and Triumph of the Won't. Tim's work can also be seen in the text-based comic, Uplift The Positivicals, a collaboration with artist Jen Ferguson (also a CulturePOP subject) at ACT-I-VATE.com.

Recently, Tim launched Undie Press, a literary website, which features free audio books, podcast interviews and essays.

My upcoming profile on Tim will focus on a trip down memory lane as he laments on his time in NYC and on his desired return from Chicago, where he's been living for the past few years. Look for it soon.

Sunday, November 7, 2010



On Saturday, November 6th, at King Con at the Brooklyn Lyceum, comics promoter / editor Jeff Newelt (Pekar Project, Heeb, Royal Flush) interviewed author Jonathan Ames, creator of the HBO series BORED TO DEATH & and comics creator Dean Haspiel, who drew the show's Emmy-winning title-credits and whom Zach Galifianakis's character "Ray Hueston is loosely based on. I shot pre-panel portraits as well as some shots during the proceedings.

These three pics are a preview of the full multimedia recap that will appear next week on HEEB Magazine, including full panel audio, video highlights, more photos, Dean's art from the show, and text excerpts from the panel.



Saturday, November 6, 2010

GRAPHIC NYC Presents Dean Haspiel: The Early Years


Graphic NYC Presents Dean Haspiel: The Early Years by Christopher Irving and from IDW publishing is out now. While I'm not an author on it, I did design the front and back covers and provide the photos for the interior, including a centerfold (really!) and a four-page photocomix tribute to Dean. It's also the first book from the Graphic NYC brand which I helped to establish.

The book traces Dean's development as an artist through essay's by Chris and a ton of Dean's early comix work. It's a great read.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Icons of Fandom

Tom Savini is an award-winning make-up artist, known for his work on the Living Dead films as well as Creepshow, Friday The 13th, and Maniac. He has acted in films such as Dawn Of The Dead (and its remake), From Dusk Till Dawn, Grindhouse, and the recent Machete.

Jim Kelly is a martial artist best known from his performance as Williams in the Bruce Lee film Enter the Dragon.


Ernie Hudson is best known for his roles as Winston Zeddemore in the Ghostbusters films, Warden Leo Glynn on HBO's Oz, and Sergeant Albrecht in The Crow.

Ralph Macchio is known for his roles are as Daniel LaRusso in the Karate Kid series and as Johnny Cade in The Outsiders.

CulturePOP Photocomix on Dean Haspiel


CulturePOP: Photocomix Profiles of Real-Life Characters returns today with a profile on Cartoonist, Emmy winner and ACT-I-VATE founder Dean Haspiel.

A version of today's photocomic, The Angel was originally created for the book, Graphic NYC Presents Dean Haspiel: The Early Years by Christopher Irving, which is available in shops this week or at Amazon.

An interesting note about my profile on Dean is that it's actually written by Dean himself. The text for The Angel was originally written for a two-page strip Dean created for Overflow Magazine. He provided me with his very personal words from the strip to use in creating this Photocomix profile. Because of this, I consider it to be a collaboration.

See it HERE.

Comments welcome and appreciated, as always. Hope you enjoy it!