8/26/12

Shout-out: Kevin Cannon


DIGESTATE CONTRIBUTOR:
KEVIN CANNON!



Kevin Cannon is a cartoonist and illustrator from Minneapolis. He is best known for his Eisner nominated graphic novel "Far Arden" and he was picked by City Pages as the "best cartoonist in the Twin Cities" in 2011 (a title he doesn't agree with but he'll go ahead and use it for promotional purposes). Kevin runs Big Time Attic studio with not-brother Zander Cannon, and together they have illustrated several nonfiction graphic novels about evolution, genetics, paleontology, and the space race. Also, Cannon is a carnivore.



Editor's note: Judging from Kevin's inscription inside, I picked up "Far Arden" at MoCCA 2009. I'm pretty certain I picked it up solely based on the drawing style, but man was I in for a surprise. This was one of my favorite (if not my favorite) comics published in '09. It works on so many levels: compelling adventure story, humor that made me laugh out loud ("LOL" for you kids), intricately woven enigmatic characters, a surprisingly touching ending and, as I mentioned, great drawings. 

Cannon paid a lot of attention to some seemingly minor elements of the comic that really stood out to me. His use of tongue-in-cheek exposition cracks me up (the beginning of one scene has a character saying, "...so, to reiterate what I said on the walk over here, Sampson and Josh here are not naval officers, but cops of a special nature..."). Extremely specific written sound-effects are also consistently funny ("ANGRY ORPHAN PUNCH!", "MID-AIR GROIN GRINDER", etc.). The transitions between scenes are always well thought out. Often dialogue from the last scene carries over into a new scene, but has some significance to the new scene as well. Cannon even amuses himself with an in-joke deposited within the story (discussing a secret code, a character says, "Even a teenager with a genetics-themed graphic novel could have figured this out", referring to a nonfiction graphic novel Cannon co-illustrated.)

Oh, also, check out Kevin & Zander's Double Barrel for lots of new work.


A new Army Shanks adventure




Interior page from "Crater XV"


Lake Minnesota


Northeast Minneapolis

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