Exclusive Preview: Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe is Glorious Chaos

Comics Features James Stokoe
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Exclusive Preview: <i>Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe</i> is Glorious Chaos

We try not to play favorites too obviously here at Paste, but there’s no denying that we are straight-up suckers for Canadian cartoonist James Stokoe’s particular brand of controlled chaos. Stokoe’s singular artwork manages to meld the jam-packed pages of Geof Darrow with the unrestrained energy of the manga masters for a style all his own, bolstered by his signature use of color gradients. Whether on original projects like Orc Stain and Wonton Soup or his licensed contributions to Marvel Comics, Godzilla and the Alien franchise, Stokoe’s name on a book is akin to must-buy status. We’re thrilled, then, to offer a special sneak peek at Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe, Dark Horse Comics’ upcoming compendium of Stokoe’s odds and ends. We’ll let Stokoe take it from here—check out his personal statement below, along with interior pages from Grunt, which hits comic-store shelves May 22nd.

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Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe Cover Art by James Stokoe

Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe
Writer/Artist: James Stokoe
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: May 22, 2019
This deluxe hardcover artbook showcases the work of inimitable comics creator James Stokoe, who has drawn some of the most visually meticulous and surreal illustrations in modern comics, featuring some of his bestselling illustrations from works such as Orc Stain, Aliens: Dead Orbit, Wonton Soup, well-known cover work, and some of his never-before-published comics.

Cartoonist James Stokoe:
My part of putting together Grunt was basically just me throwing everything and the kitchen sink at my editor, Daniel Chabon. Of course, not everything could fit in the book, but I think we ended up with a pretty healthy balance of unpublished comic work and cover and illustration work I’ve done over the years. The earliest work in there is stuff I was doing when I was around 19/20, so it’s kind of odd having to go back in time like that… seeing my old work gives me an involuntary embarrassed feeling, but enough time has passed where I can ignore the roughness, and appreciate it as a stepping stone for where I am now and (hopefully) continue to grow. It also made me realized how rarely I sketch, and how a lot of these unpublished comics filled that creative head space for my more concrete stories. I’ve cannibalized a lot of these older ideas a lot in my published works, so it’ll be interesting to share with readers how my brain works when making a story.

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Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe Interior Art by James Stokoe

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Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe Interior Art by James Stokoe

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Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe Interior Art by James Stokoe

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Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe Interior Art by James Stokoe

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Grunt: The Art and Unpublished Comics of James Stokoe Interior Art by James Stokoe

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