VAROOM! Issue 18

Wed 30 May 2012 by Emma_McCann


 -   A celebration of film animation and graphic novel culture

Movies, graphic novels and 17th century broadsides come under the spotlight in the latest issue of Varoom!, the award-winning, quarterly magazine which celebrates the cultural, political and social ideas in contemporary illustration from around the world.

With comic book characters smashing their way onto the big screen and proving commercially lucrative, John Lowe takes a topical look on selling graphic novel concepts to Hollywood.  The popularity and versatility of graphic novels has produced some imaginative, innovative work.  The Wolf Man, the latest release from independent publisher SelfMadeHero, is an adaptation of Sigmund Freud’s classic case study and this issue interviews its illustrator, Slawa Harasymowicz.

Back in Europe, French director Michel Ocelot talks about his animation technique that brings storytelling magic to the newly released feature film, Tales of the Night.  Having received BAFTA and Oscar nominations for his animated short film A Morning Stroll, UK filmmaker Grant Orchard talks about his inspiration and the variety of work he undertakes.   Film remains the subject of a behind-the scenes looks at Moonbot, the Louisiana-based  design studio which won an Oscar for his animated short, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr Morris Lessmore,  but it also looks at their designs an innovative app to create an added interactive experience.  

BAFTA, on the other hand, has been producing a high collectable programme since its 2009 film awards with a series of specially commissioned illustrations depicting the Best Film nominees. Varoom’s editor John O’Reilly talks to the designers commissioners and illustrators involved.  Owning original artwork comes under the hammer in discussion with Todd Highnite, Vice President of Heritage Auction and editor of Comic Art magazine, who reveals the increasing collectability of cartoon art such as Calvin and Hobbes.

Between 16th and 19th centuries  literature was sold on the streets, featuring lyrics, salacious news items and political comments with woodblock illustration and Des McCannon takes us on an historical stroll through the broadside sellers of Hogarthian London to current practices such as The Occupied Times in UK and Trinidad’s The Town. 

Over the years, Varoom!  has developed strong links with international academic institutions through its Varoom Lab partnerships. As part of those ongoing academic associations , this issue sees the publication of a prestigious peer review paper from Stephanie Black,  who is an illustrator and Associate Lecturer at University of West of England.  She argues that in this multi-media age, non-digital illustrators still demonstrate sequential skills that have a better way of depicting time.

This issue’s cover art has been specially commissioned from Zurich-trained artist, Stephan Walter, renowned for his Vegas style typography and constructions, who gives an in-depth interview about his career.

The magazine includes its regular news round-up sections covering graphic novels, children’s books, fashion and more, as well as opinion pieces, including regular editorial from Paul Davis.  Each issue also features unique centrespread artwork from Marian Bantjes, and a new comic strip from The Guardian cartoonist Tom Gauld.

Varoom! 18 is available from selected book shops and can be purchased online from:

For further information please contact:  Paul Smith, [email protected], 020 7613 4328