Can we talk about John’s art for a minute? One of the greatest things about comics is discovering the many ways that an artist arrived at how they draw. Their modern style is usually arrived at through economy, a desire to tell a story as quickly and as efficiently as possible. There are years of decisions in each stroke. An exactitude is reached. John’s drawings began as an angry punk scrawl and like John mellowed over the years. Each panel is minimal but exact. Perfect, simple, gorgeous. John’s drawing is what comics should be—it’s a single decisive voice. John knows what he wants and you look and you know too.
My rough estimate says I’ve been working with John for eighteen years going back to when I published his first book collection of King-Cat stories (Perfect Example). King-Cat has been in my life for longer. A constant. There is always a stack of King-Cats nearby. I find a stack in my desk drawer or wedged between Chester Brown and Marc Bell books on my shelf (out of order!!) From Lone Mountain is in stores today. Each of John’s books is a treasure OF COURSE but I do think this book is special because it is the perfection of what I think of as John’s mature style. From Lone Mountain focuses on John’s love of the road through numerous stories of road trips. In the course of this book John moves from Denver to San Francisco and finally back to the Midwest where it all began. John walks and observes the birds and trees and animals and pants around him. By books end, John recounts a number of zen parables. He has stopped moving and is looking for answers in the mind. You should all buy this book. You should all put a pen to paper and write John and say thank you, thank you for sharing. Thanks, John.