Monday, September 12, 2011

Read this: Life, Love and Storytelling: Craig Thompson's 'Habibi'

The cover to Thompson's latest graphic novel.

Craig Thompson, the cartoonist behind several critically acclaimed works, is getting ready for the debut of his latest graphic novel, Habibi, a 672-page epic set to hit shelves on September 20th. Included in his prep is an interview with Publisher's Weekly where he shares many insights into the creation of the book, such as incorporating Arabic calligraphy:

I don’t know Arabic. I can’t speak or write it. So the Arabic calligraphy you see in the book is more of sort of a collage sampling. [. . .] And it’s almost better to not see the words when you’re looking at them and you can just appreciate them for their visual aesthetic, rather than have the meaning of the words get in the way. Sometimes I would just have to create my own compositions and look up words in the dictionary. And then I would have to create my own calligraphic compositions, but then some of them are tributes to famous calligraphers whose calligraphic compositions were a big inspiration.

Thompson is best known for his memoir Blankets, a book that's introduced many readers to the comics medium. Habibi will surely be another fine read for people who appreciate the occasional bittersweet work of literature.

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