Gentle Carmel: Into The Black Dumb

Brian Schrank writes;

My first year as a PhD student I was reading and writing so much I felt like an empty roll of toilet paper. Who was I? What was I doing? How should I kill myself? I spent more and more time drawing pages for a comic that I couldn’t show anybody. It was the mental puke bag I used to avoid getting my sick all over the place.

I piled up thousands of very bad drawings over two years. I was inspired by the awe and terror of youth as well as the four years I grew into a man living in Mexico, Taiwan, the Middle East, India, and Southeast Asia. In my travels I discovered many kinds of awkward. Much of what happens in Gentle Carmel is based on actual experiences, as humiliating as that might seem. I slept and drew under a train in Mexico and did indeed feel like a superhuman hobo once in a while. The auditory hallucinations of animals screaming and dying at night happened while I was alone in the desert for a few weeks in northern Mexico. At first I would ball up on the ground and shut down. But I eventually worked up the courage to seek out and explore the source of those sounds.

In the Seinfeld episode, “The Opposite,” Jerry tells George, “if every instinct you have is wrong, then the opposite would have to be right.” The more I felt that drawing this comic was a complete waste of time, the more I was drawn to it. And the wilder I could be with it. I would leave home without supplies to force myself to scrounge up paper, markers and pens from wherever I went. I could only draw if I was uncomfortable. What frustrates me about most comics is that they don’t play hard with their structure and technique in single works. They don’t seem to fully trust the reader’s intelligence or celebrate the plasticity of the medium. I didn’t want to be guilty of that so I tried to really play with story and style in Gentle Carmel.

As I finished my PhD, I also finished the comic. All the anxious imagery had been caught, cataloged, and paginated. I hope you enjoy it. Please let me know what you think:

It’s available in paperback at Amazon and as a free PDF here:

Forbidden Planet, Big Bang, Green Brain, Beguiling And Kings Are New CBLDF Champions


The Rumour That Ian McKellen Will Appear In Red Thorn Movie Can Start Here

The Flash -- "Flash vs. Arrow" -- Image FLA108c_0157b -- Pictured (L-R): Grant Gustin as The Flash and Stephen Amell as The Arrow -- Photo: Diyah Pera /The CW -- © 2014 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.

How Utilizing DC Comics Is Changing Warner Bros.

Is This The Uncanny X-Men – Or Magneto’s X-Force?


The Name Of Peter Quill’s Father At Heart Of New Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol 2. Rumor

The Bleeding Cool Top 100 Power List 2015 – 82 To 80

Will Spider-Man’s Tombstone Be Making An MCU Appearance?

Gotham Fall Finale Brings All The Players To The Table

Red Tornado Is Coming To Supergirl On Monday

19 More Black Friday Sales In Comic Book Stores