I recently finished producing illustrations for Field Manual: Human Body, a self-published zine by my good friend, John Wawrzaszek (a.k.a. Johnny Misfit). You can purchase Johnny’s zines at Quimby’s Bookstore in Chicago or from his website, johnnymisfit.com.
This was my second time working with Johnny. In 2010, I illustrated the cover for The Muse, the News, and the Noose: Quiet Songs.
Field Manual is like an owners’ manual for the human body, only it is full of tongue-in-cheek advice. I decided to base my drawings on illustrations from anatomy books. I noticed how the artists would often include fragments from various layers of the human body in a single illustration, and not always in a logical way. Part of the skeleton might be wrapped in a partial muscular system, and random nerves and veins might ornament the layers like tinsel. The choices were almost arbitrary, and the effect verged on abstract design.
I wanted to make the drawings in white line on a black ground. Unlike the images in my previous post, I would make the images with a black mechanical pen on white paper, and then reverse the black and white on a computer. My reason for not inking around the white areas this time is that I wanted the cold, consistent line of the mechanical pen.
Ultimately, the white-on-black look did not go with the layout of the zine, so we decided to use my original, unaltered white-on-black drawings. Below you will see a few of my favorite illustrations from the set, both the white-on-black and black-on-white versions.
If you want to see the rest of my illustrations, I encourage you to contact Johnny about getting your own copy of Field Manual: Human Body!