Scott McCloud
McCloud smiling
McCloud in 2007
BornScott McLeod
(1960-06-10) June 10, 1960 (age 63)
Boston, Massachusetts, United States
NationalityAmerican
Area(s)
Notable works
Awards
www.scottmccloud.com

Scott McCloud (born Scott McLeod; June 10, 1960) is an American cartoonist and comics theorist. He is best known for his non-fiction books about comics: Understanding Comics (1993), Reinventing Comics (2000), and Making Comics (2006), all of which also use the medium of comics.

He established himself as a comics creator in the 1980s as an independent superhero cartoonist and advocate for creator's rights. He rose to prominence in the industry beginning in the 1990s for his non-fiction works about the medium, and has advocated the use of new technology in the creation and distribution of comics.

Early life

McCloud was born in 1960[1] in Boston,[2] Massachusetts, the youngest child of Willard Wise (a blind inventor and engineer)[3] and Patricia Beatrice McLeod,[4] and spent most of his childhood in Lexington, Massachusetts.[5] He decided he wanted to be a comics artist in 1975, during his junior year in high school.[5]

He attended Syracuse University's Illustration program and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1982.[1][5][6][7]

Career

Fiction

During his high school years, he collaborated on comics with his schoolmate Kurt Busiek, who went on to a career as a successful comics writer. While still teenagers, the two of them, together with fellow teenagers Christopher Bing (a 2001 Caldecott Medal winner) and Richard Howell, created the first licensed Marvel/DC crossover comic Pow! Biff! Pops!, a one-shot sold in conjunction with a 1978 Boston Pops performance of comics-themed music.[8]

While working as a production artist at DC Comics, McCloud created the light-hearted science fiction/superhero comic book series Zot! in 1984, in part as a reaction to the increasingly grim direction that superhero comics were taking in the 1980s.

His other print comics include the 1986 black and white comic Destroy!! (a deliberately over-the-top, oversized single-issue comic book, intended as a parody of formulaic superhero fights), the 1998 graphic novel The New Adventures of Abraham Lincoln (done with a mixture of computer-generated and manually drawn digital images), 12 issues writing DC Comics' Superman Adventures in the late 1990s, the 2005 three-issue series Superman: Strength, and the 2015 graphic novel The Sculptor.[9]

Creator's Bill of Rights

McCloud was the principal author of the Creator's Bill of Rights, a 1988 document with the stated aim of protecting the rights of comic book creators and helping aid against the exploitation of comic artists and writers by corporate work-for-hire practices.[10] The group that adopted the Bill also included artists Kevin Eastman, Dave Sim, and Stephen R. Bissette.[11] The Bill included twelve rights such as "The right to full ownership of what we fully create," and "The right to prompt payment of a fair and equitable share of profits derived from all of our creative work."[12]

24-hour comic

In 1990, McCloud coined the idea of a 24-hour comic: a complete 24-page comic created by a single cartoonist in 24 consecutive hours. It was a mutual challenge with cartoonist Steve Bissette, intended to compel creative output with a minimum of self-restraining contemplation.[13] Thousands of cartoonists have since taken up the challenge, including Neil Gaiman; Kevin Eastman, co-creator of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles; Dave Sim, who published some of his work from this challenge in Cerebus the Aardvark;[14] and Rick Veitch, who used it as a springboard for his comic Rarebit Fiends.[15]

Non-fiction about comics

McCloud signing his book Making Comics in 2006

In the early 1990s, McCloud began a series of three books about the medium and business of comics, all done in comics form. The first of these was Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art, published in 1993, which established him as a popular comics theorist, described as the "Aristotle of comics"[16] and the "Marshall McLuhan of comics".[2] The book was a wide-ranging exploration of the definition, history, vocabulary, and methods of the medium of comics,[17] and is widely cited in academic discussions of the medium.[18][19]

In 2000, McCloud published Reinventing Comics: How Imagination and Technology Are Revolutionizing an Art Form, in which he outlined twelve "revolutions" taking place, that he argued would be keys to the growth and success of comics as a popular and creative medium.

McCloud returned to focus on the medium itself in 2006 with Making Comics: Storytelling Secrets of Comics, Manga, and Graphic Novels, an instructional guide to the process of producing comics, which he followed with a promotional lecture tour with his family of all 50 U.S. states and parts of Europe.[20]

In November 2022, McCloud was working on a third draft of layouts for an upcoming book on visual communication. McCloud has described the book as "a preposterously ambitious full color project covering the evolution and biology of vision; principles of visual perception; demonstrations of how visual elements behave in the mind’s eye; best practices for clarity, explanation, and effective rhetoric; and some personal reflections on [my] family’s experiences with blindness."[21]

Technology

Beginning in the late 1990s, McCloud was an early advocate of micropayments.[22] He was an adviser to BitPass, a company that provided an online micropayment system, which he helped launch with the publication of The Right Number, an online graphic novella priced at US$0.25 for each chapter.

Among the techniques he explores is the "infinite canvas" permitted by a web browser, allowing panels to be spatially arranged in ways not possible in the finite, two-dimensional, paged format of a physical book.[17]

Google commissioned him in 2008 to create a comic serving as the press release introducing their web browser Chrome.[23]

Personal life

McCloud lives in California.[24] In 1988 he married Ivy Ratafia,[25] and they had two daughters together.[26] Ivy died in a car accident in April 2022.[27]

Awards

Nominations

Bibliography

Typography

Various fonts used in Scott McCloud's comics have been recreated digitally, and have been released by Comicraft:

References

  1. ^ a b McCloud, Scott. (2000), Reinventing Comics. Paradox Press. p. 92
  2. ^ a b Warren, James (June 17, 2011). "A New Therapeutic Tool in the Doctor's Bag: Comic Strips". The New York Times. Archived from the original on November 17, 2012. Retrieved March 19, 2013.
  3. ^ McCloud, Scott (13 January 2009), The visual magic of comics, archived from the original on 2019-02-20, retrieved 2019-02-10
  4. ^ "Author: Scott McCloud - Understanding Comics". sites.google.com. Archived from the original on 2017-03-14. Retrieved 2017-03-13.
  5. ^ a b c Albert Boime; David Dodd (August 22, 2000). "PROFILE INTERVIEW: Scott McCloud". www.popimage.com. Archived from the original on 2008-05-13. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  6. ^ Blust, Erica (3 February 2023). "Award-Winning Comics Theorist Scott McCloud '82 to Present Lecture Feb. 9". Syracuse University News. Archived from the original on 5 February 2023. Retrieved 5 February 2023.
  7. ^ Harvey, R.C. (August 1979), "Scott McCloud" Archived 2012-03-19 at the Wayback Machine. The Comics Journal #179. Retrieved November 16, 2011.
  8. ^ "Comic Book Legends Revealed #438 | CBR". www.cbr.com. 27 September 2013. Archived from the original on 17 February 2020. Retrieved 17 February 2020.
  9. ^ McCloud, Scott (Feb 2015). The Sculptor. New York: First Second. ISBN 9781596435735.
  10. ^ Coogan, Pete (September, 1990). "Creator's Rights". The Comics Journal p. 65-71
  11. ^ McCloud, Scott (2000). Reinventing Comics, New York: Paradox Press. Pg. 62
  12. ^ "Creator's Bill of Rights". 2006-10-13. Archived from the original on 2011-07-26. Retrieved 2008-03-30.
  13. ^ Brattleboro Museum. "The 24-Hour Comic Book Challenge". Archived from the original on 2007-06-07.
  14. ^ Cerebus #142 (Aardvark/Vanaheim, January 1991).
  15. ^ "The 24-Hour Comic - The Phenomenon". www.scottmccloud.com. Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  16. ^ Wardrip-Fruin, Noah & Montfort, Nick (2003). The New Media Reader. The MIT Press.
  17. ^ a b "The University of Noth Dakota | University Letter". Archived from the original on 10 August 2007.
  18. ^ Miodrag, Hannah (2013-07-08). Comics and Language: Reimagining Critical Discourse on the Form. Univ. Press of Mississippi. ISBN 9781617038044. Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2020-11-21.
  19. ^ Dong, Lan (2014-01-10). Teaching Comics and Graphic Narratives: Essays on Theory, Strategy and Practice. McFarland. ISBN 9780786492640. Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2020-11-21.
  20. ^ MIT news (September 20, 2006). "'Making Comics' author decodes cartoons". Archived from the original on November 28, 2007.
  21. ^ "On the Drawing Board: Visual Communication and Beyond". Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2022-11-30.
  22. ^ Ben Hammersley (August 7, 2003). "Making the web pay". The Guardian. Archived from the original on February 5, 2023. Retrieved March 5, 2007.
  23. ^ McCloud, Scott (2008-09-01). "Google Chrome, behind the Open Source Browser Product". Archived from the original on 2021-02-11. Retrieved 2008-09-02.
  24. ^ "About". scottmccloud.com. Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  25. ^ McCloud, Scott. Postscript to The Sculptor (First Second, 2015).
  26. ^ Ratafia, Ivy. "What I did on my summer vacation," Ivy Ratafia's journal (Apr. 16, 2016).
  27. ^ "tweet by McCloud". Twitter. Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2022-04-30.
  28. ^ "1985 Jack Kirby Awards". Hahn Library Comic Book Awards Almanac. Archived from the original on 2012-03-04. Retrieved November 16, 2011.
  29. ^ Kees Kousemaker. "Scott McCloud". Kees Kousemaker's Lambiek Comiclopedia. Archived from the original on October 18, 2011. Retrieved November 16, 2011.
  30. ^ "The Russ Manning Most Promising Newcomer Award" Archived 2011-11-01 at the Wayback Machine. San Diego Comic-Con International. Retrieved November 16, 2011.
  31. ^ "Russ Manning Most Promising Newcomer Award". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2015-09-24. Retrieved November 16, 2011.
  32. ^ "1994 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2012-07-25. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  33. ^ a b c "1994 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2015-06-08. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  34. ^ "2001 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2022-10-10. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  35. ^ "1988 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2013-10-24. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  36. ^ a b c d "1988 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2015-10-18. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  37. ^ a b "1991 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2013-10-05. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  38. ^ a b c d "1991 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2016-03-08. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  39. ^ "1992 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  40. ^ "1993 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  41. ^ "1994 Hugo Awards". July 28, 2007. Archived from the original on May 7, 2011. Retrieved February 10, 2019.
  42. ^ a b c "1998 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2013-09-21. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  43. ^ "2007 Harvey Award Nominees and Winners". www.hahnlibrary.net. Archived from the original on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  44. ^ "The Big List". www.scottmccloud.com. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  45. ^ "Google Chrome". www.google.com. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  46. ^ Best American Comics 2014
  47. ^ "Scott McCloud font". The World's Greatest Comic Book Fonts. Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  48. ^ "The Sculptor font". The World's Greatest Comic Book Fonts. Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2023-02-05.
  49. ^ "Digital Delivery font". The World's Greatest Comic Book Fonts. Archived from the original on 2023-02-05. Retrieved 2023-02-05.