February 26, 2014

JAMES BOND COMIC EVENT

The Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco is hosting a special 007 event this Saturday night. If you haven't discovered the comic James Bond, you are in for a treat! Four years before audiences heard Sean Connery introduce himself as "Bond, James Bond" in Dr. No (1962), Ian Fleming's secret agent came to life as a comic strip in the Daily Express. His adventures continued in newspapers until 1983. Fans around the world have also followed Bond's missions in many comic book publications from the 1960s-1990s, most notably by DC (USA), Semic Press (Scandinavia), Giallo (Italy), Eclipse (USA), and Zig Zag (South America). Most recently, Charlie Higson's Young Bond novel, Silverfin, was released as a graphic novel in 2010.  


Museum chair Ron Evans, Alan J. Porter (James Bond: The History of the Illustrated 007), and Mike Capozzola will present an in-depth discussion and slideshow about the history of James Bond comics from 7:30-9:30. Event highlights also include: vintage memorabilia, silent auction, SKYPE with special guests, prizes, and martinis. Admission is $007. More info here. Comic covers from my sister site Illustrated 007.



Recent Spy Vibe posts: James Bond Turkish EditionEdward Gorey's 1960sIpcress File cinematography007 SOLO cover designsBatman Valentines cardsSaturday Cartoons: Marine BoyMary QuantPatrick Macnee, Gloria Steinem and Denny O'Neil on MOD Wonder WomanWin Scott Eckert interview, Siegel and Shuster's SPYDavid McCallum: Son of BatmanJon Gilbert talks FlemingBarbarella TV seriesMeet the Beatles 50thWonderwall comes to Blu-rayBatman StripsDavid Bowie at 67Kevin Dart talks Ringo & Powerpuff GirlsSherlock ExhibitFu Manchu history panelAndy Warhol box set, Six-Million Dollar ManStriped Light NudeBuckminster FullerDylan at NewportJane and SergeThe Goldfinger VariationsMod Tales InterviewDavid Tennant's Ian Fleming audio books, Atomic ArtShane Glines Batman.


Recent Ian Fleming posts on Spy Vibe: Ian Fleming LettersErno Goldfinger, Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel CowardWhispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming CatalogJon Gilbert interview, Double 007 Designs, Bond audio book reissues, discovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book covers, Ian Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, rare View to a Kill, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, Spy Vibe's Ian Fleming image archive.

February 24, 2014

TURKISH JAMES BOND DESIGN

Book covers are forever: Start your week with this rare Turkish edition of From Russia With Love. Our sister site Illustrated 007 has just added this gem to their on-line gallery of James Bond art. Painted by A. Tudan in 1963, the wraparound cover featured unique imagery of Tatiana as portrayed by Daniela Bianchi on-screen. From Russia With Love book covers tended to be either abstract (Chopping, Hawkey), or to feature photo stills from the movie (Pan, Signet). Tatiana is depicted on the jacket with her hair down and in a sheet that barely covers her breasts. This is interesting because she did not appear this way in the film. So how did Tudan choose this particular image? Story continues below.


Although the bedroom rendezvous between 007 and Tatiana was quite memorable, even international movie posters tended to focus on action scenes and the famous image of Sean Connery posing with an air pistol. The Spanish poster below included Tatiana with her hair up- as she appeared on-screen- but now in a strapless dress. I seem to recall my Japanese copy of the novel also featured Connery with the pistol and a similar hair-up version of Tatiana. The Turkish image is spicier and its origin might be a bit of a mystery to most viewers.

Tudan chose not to use abstraction, photographs, nor the popular action imagery from the movie. So what inspired this Turkish copy of From Russia With Love? A batch of on-set photographs circulated at the time, many showing Connery and Bianchi horsing around in bed. Below you can see a few of the shots in the proof, as well as the actual source image for the book cover. As you can see, Tatiana's sheet got pulled down a bit further- and her sightline was moved down from her eyes to the now-suggestive barrel of his Walther PPK.


It's interesting to me how Ian Fleming's stories have been packaged over the years, and how different countries focus on elements that appeal to their culture. Perhaps for the Turkish market in 1963, publishers thought Bond's illicit love affair with an enemy agent would sell more copies? Perhaps their readers were more attracted to thrilling romance and character development than a chain of action set-pieces? In our age of the blockbuster, this may still be the eternal question. More at Illustrated 007. Color movie still from Bond Girls Are Forever. Related posts: Edward Gorey's 1960s, Double 007 Book Designs,  Double 007 designs II, rare Ian Fleming edition, Book Design Dopplegangers. Click A/B comparison below for larger image. Enjoy!


Recent Spy Vibe posts: Edward Gorey's 1960sIpcress File cinematography007 SOLO cover designsBatman Valentines cardsSaturday Cartoons: Marine BoyMary QuantPatrick Macnee, Gloria Steinem and Denny O'Neil on MOD Wonder WomanWin Scott Eckert interview, Siegel and Shuster's SPYDavid McCallum: Son of BatmanJon Gilbert talks FlemingBarbarella TV seriesMeet the Beatles 50thWonderwall comes to Blu-rayBatman StripsDavid Bowie at 67Kevin Dart talks Ringo & Powerpuff GirlsSherlock ExhibitFu Manchu history panelAndy Warhol box set, Six-Million Dollar ManStriped Light NudeBuckminster FullerDylan at NewportJane and SergeThe Goldfinger VariationsMod Tales InterviewDavid Tennant's Ian Fleming audio books, Atomic ArtShane Glines Batman.

Recent Ian Fleming posts on Spy Vibe: Ian Fleming LettersErno Goldfinger, Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel CowardWhispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming CatalogJon Gilbert interview, Double 007 Designs, Bond audio book reissues, discovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book covers, Ian Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, rare View to a Kill, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, Spy Vibe's Ian Fleming image archive.

February 22, 2014

EDWARD GOREY'S 1960S

Saturday Cartoons: Artist/writer Edward Gorey was born on this day in 1925. Celebrated for his gothic visual style and humor, Gorey designed book covers for Doubleday before releasing his own series of projects beginning in the early 1960s. His work rode the wave of Edwardian and Victorian resurgence in the 1960s, which was popularized in the media by The Addams Family (1964-1966), Adam Adamant Lives! (1966-1967), Doctor Zhivago (1965), Wacky Races (1968-1970), and the John Steed character played by Patrick Macnee in The Avengers. Like the Addams Family series and cartoons, Gorey leaned heavily toward macabre mystery. Asked about his fascination with gothic subjects, the artist told The New Yorker in 1992, "If you're doing nonsense it has to be rather awful, because there'd be no point. I'm trying to think if there's sunny nonsense. Sunny, funny nonsense for children- oh, how boring, boring, boring. As Schubert said, there is no happy music. And that's true, there really isn't. And there's probably no happy nonsense, either." His early assignments included The Secret Agent, Amerika, War of the Worlds, and Let's Kill Uncle- a story adapted for the screen by William Castle in 1966. Story continues.


Gorey's universe echoed similar motifs in pop culture during the 1960s. Take a short tour of Dandy fashion and fur coats from the decade: Adam Adamant Lives!, The Avengers, Carnaby Street, The Rolling Stones, Assassination Bureau with Diana Rigg (1969), and Franju's 1963 remake of the 1916 classic serial, Judex.


I discovered Edward Gorey through his dark alphabet book, The Gashlycrumb Tinies. First published in 1963, the book had a resurgence of popularity in the early 1980s. Each letter of the alphabet featured the strange demise of a child drawn in Gorey's signature thicket of ink lines. He may be best remembered for the intro animation based on his work made for PBS Mystery. He also designed the costumes and sets to Dracula in 1977, published as Dracula: A Toy Theater in 1979 and rereleased in 2007 with paper dolls and sets. Gorey passed away in 2000. Images and the Mystery video below. Learn more: Amphigorey, Amphigorey Too, Amphigorey Also, Amphigorey Again, Amazon author page, and artist news and archives at Edward Gorey House. Related post: The Adventures of Richard Sala.

Recent Spy Vibe posts: Ipcress File cinematography007 SOLO cover designsBatman Valentines cardsSaturday Cartoons: Marine BoyMary QuantPatrick Macnee, Gloria Steinem and Denny O'Neil on MOD Wonder WomanWin Scott Eckert interview, Siegel and Shuster's SPYDavid McCallum: Son of BatmanJon Gilbert talks FlemingBarbarella TV seriesMeet the Beatles 50thWonderwall comes to Blu-rayBatman StripsDavid Bowie at 67Kevin Dart talks Ringo & Powerpuff GirlsSherlock ExhibitFu Manchu history panelAndy Warhol box set, Six-Million Dollar ManStriped Light NudeBuckminster FullerDylan at NewportJane and SergeThe Goldfinger VariationsMod Tales InterviewDavid Tennant's Ian Fleming audio books, Atomic ArtShane Glines Batman.

Recent Ian Fleming posts on Spy Vibe: Ian Fleming LettersErno Goldfinger, Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel CowardWhispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming CatalogJon Gilbert interview, Double 007 Designs, Bond audio book reissues, discovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book covers, Ian Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, rare View to a Kill, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, Spy Vibe's Ian Fleming image archive.

February 20, 2014

THROUGH THE IPCRESS FILE

As I teach my photo students every year, there are many compositional ways to create a sense of deep space in a scene. Depth-staging forces the viewer to look through a subject placed in extreme foreground to another subject far away. Depending on the elements in the image, results can be dynamic, mysterious, claustrophobic, and can evoke psychological relationships between subjects. Visually, the approach also creates the engaging effect of "frames within frames." One of my all-time favorite examples of the technique is the cult spy film, The Ipcress File (1965), starring Michael Caine. When the core team of James Bond filmmakers adapted Len Deighton's novel, director Sidney Furie and DP Otto Heller famously made over 100 shots in the film that used depth-staging. On the blog VashiVisuals, editor Vashi Nedomansky has posted an analysis of The Ipcress File that includes a 10-minute video of all 100 shots in the movie. A must-read and must-see for Spy Vibers! Link here. See video below. Many members of the James Bond movie franchise contributed to The Ipcress File, including Harry Saltzman, John Barry, Peter Hunt, and Ken Adam. The Deighton Harry Palmer movies starring Michael Caine are often out of print. There is a European Blu-ray edition of The Ipcress File that is apparently all-region. You can currently see the second installment in the series, Funeral in Berlin, streaming on Amazon. Enjoy!



Recent Spy Vibe posts: 007 SOLO cover designsBatman Valentines cardsSaturday Cartoons: Marine BoyMary QuantPatrick Macnee, Gloria Steinem and Denny O'Neil on MOD Wonder WomanWin Scott Eckert interview, Siegel and Shuster's SPYDavid McCallum: Son of BatmanJon Gilbert talks FlemingBarbarella TV seriesMeet the Beatles 50thWonderwall comes to Blu-rayBatman StripsDavid Bowie at 67Kevin Dart talks Ringo & Powerpuff GirlsSherlock ExhibitFu Manchu history panelAndy Warhol box set, Six-Million Dollar ManStriped Light NudeBuckminster FullerDylan at NewportJane and SergeThe Goldfinger VariationsMod Tales Interview, David Tennant's Ian Fleming audio books, Atomic Art, Shane Glines Batman.

Recent Ian Fleming posts on Spy Vibe: Ian Fleming LettersErno Goldfinger, Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel CowardWhispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming CatalogJon Gilbert interview, Double 007 Designs, Bond audio book reissues, discovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book covers, Ian Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, rare View to a Kill, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, Spy Vibe's Ian Fleming image archive.

February 18, 2014

007 SOLO DESIGNS

Book covers are forever. They set the tone for our reading experience, and often endure in the mind as visual symbols of our favorite stories. Ian Fleming Publications announced today the new jacket designs for the paperback editions of the new James Bond novel, Solo. The UK version will be released on May 8th and combines the hardcover typeface with a photographic image that aligns the release with last year's 007 Contemporary Vintage Series. Fleming Publications suggests the single eye motif is reminiscent of the original For Your Eyes Only design by Chopping. To my two eyes, the design seems oddly top-heavy with too many circles stacked off-center to the iris. Perhaps it captures a contemporary look, but I wonder if it will date quickly? Those 1980s silhouette covers looked similarly slick and modern at the time, but have not aged well. The US and Canadian editions will arrive on June 3rd. Based on the hardcover design, the paperback gets an icy blue makeover. I prefer this to the UK cover, but I'm not sure it evokes "James Bond" to me. Perhaps a contemporary well-pressed Bond- or maybe a cigarette-package design? I admit that I prefer my 007 to have a vintage flair, and the covers by Chopping, Hawkey, and the geometric patterns by Amazon all set the mood for timeless adventure. Solo is set at the end of the 1960s and I wonder if the jacket captures that flavor? The original hardcover was more elegant, with negative space in the upper half and the typeface seeping out from a collective black stripe on pale yellow (comparison below). It will be fun to look back on these covers in ten years and see how they stand up. In the meantime, enjoy Solo and congratulations to Fleming Publications on the new James Bond adventure! Below: UK paperback, US/Canada paperback, US hardcover.




Recent Spy Vibe posts: Batman Valentines cardsSaturday Cartoons: Marine BoyMary QuantPatrick Macnee, Gloria Steinem and Denny O'Neil on MOD Wonder WomanWin Scott Eckert interview, Siegel and Shuster's SPYDavid McCallum: Son of BatmanJon Gilbert talks FlemingBarbarella TV seriesMeet the Beatles 50thWonderwall comes to Blu-rayBatman StripsDavid Bowie at 67Kevin Dart talks Ringo & Powerpuff GirlsSherlock ExhibitFu Manchu history panelAndy Warhol box set, Six-Million Dollar ManStriped Light NudeBuckminster FullerDylan at NewportJane and SergeThe Goldfinger VariationsMod Tales InterviewPete SeegerKraftwerk returns to US, Beatles BBC on Fresh Air, Steranko S.H.I.E.L.D. Artist Editions, David Tennant's Ian Fleming audio books, Atomic ArtModern Architecture LPJulius ShulmanShane Glines Batman, The Prisoner and Captain ScarletDiego Fortunato and Verner Panton, Saturday Morning CartoonsAssassination Bureau on DVD, new Young Bond series, new Hercule Poirot novel, Early Beatles image archive, Julie NewmarErno GoldfingerHitchcock tribute.

Recent Ian Fleming posts on Spy Vibe: Ian Fleming LettersErno Goldfinger, Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel CowardWhispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming CatalogJon Gilbert interview, Double 007 Designs, Bond audio book reissues, discovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book covers, Ian Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, rare View to a Kill, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, Spy Vibe's Ian Fleming image archive.

February 17, 2014

IMAGE BATCAVE

Atomic batteries to power. Turbines to speed! Celebrate the world's greatest detective with Spy Vibe's Batman image archive on Pinterest. You'll find vintage toys and covers, trading cards, Japanese records, Chip Kidd designs, and art by Andy Warhol, Ryan Heshka, Richard Sala, and many others. Enter the image Batcave here. Related posts: 1966 Valentines cards, Saturday Morning Cartoons: Marine Boy, Saturday Morning Cartoons: Bird Man, Richard Sala interview, Win Scott Eckert interviewJohnny Sokko and His Flying RobotGigantorSpies Robots Monsters,BirdmanBeware the Batman w Shane GlinesRobert Valley's Wonder WomanBoris and NatashaMod Wonder Woman, Kevin Dart on Powerpuff Girls


Recent Spy Vibe posts: Batman Valentines cardsSaturday Cartoons: Marine BoyMary QuantPatrick Macnee, Gloria Steinem and Denny O'Neil on MOD Wonder WomanWin Scott Eckert interview, Siegel and Shuster's SPYDavid McCallum: Son of BatmanJon Gilbert talks FlemingBarbarella TV seriesMeet the Beatles 50thWonderwall comes to Blu-rayBatman StripsDavid Bowie at 67Kevin Dart talks Ringo & Powerpuff GirlsSherlock ExhibitFu Manchu history panelAndy Warhol box set, Six-Million Dollar ManStriped Light NudeBuckminster FullerDylan at NewportJane and SergeThe Goldfinger VariationsMod Tales InterviewPete SeegerKraftwerk returns to US, Beatles BBC on Fresh Air, Steranko S.H.I.E.L.D. Artist Editions, David Tennant's Ian Fleming audio books, Atomic ArtModern Architecture LPJulius ShulmanShane Glines Batman, The Prisoner and Captain ScarletDiego Fortunato and Verner Panton, Saturday Morning CartoonsAssassination Bureau on DVD, new Young Bond series, new Hercule Poirot novel, Early Beatles image archive, Julie NewmarErno GoldfingerHitchcock tribute.

Recent Ian Fleming posts on Spy Vibe: Ian Fleming LettersErno Goldfinger, Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel CowardWhispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming CatalogJon Gilbert interview, Double 007 Designs, Bond audio book reissues, discovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book covers, Ian Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, rare View to a Kill, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, Spy Vibe's Ian Fleming image archive.
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