Monday, March 14, 2011
Shanth Enjeti Circa 1998
My senior year in college I created a lot of work outside of homework assignments to showcase my abilities as a draftsman and sequential storyteller (such that they were my senior year in college). When I tell my students that I did not have a cell phone (not to mention a "smart phone") and that the only way anyone would see my work was if I mailed it to them or showed it in person, it always amazes me how different the world is today.
I had not taken a digital class when I graduated and I did not own a laptop or computer. I used photo copiers to reproduce my work, and this is an example of what I would mail or hand to editors my senior year (1998). Looking back at these pages of sequential art, it is amazing to me how far things have come. These pages that showcase a battle of a cyborg "Stonewall" Jackson and a heroic Abraham Lincoln make obscure references to Civil War history and used technology inspired by locomotives that seemed absurd to many teachers (not all) and made little sense to editors at the various publishers of the day.
If I had been creating this work now, invariably I would have showcased it on the internet and had an understanding that I was making work within a genre that even in 1998 had a name: "Steampunk."
There is something extraordinary about this current age in which we are living where there is an audience for any idea available and accessible to the young artists and creators of the world. Of the work I completed while at college, these pages stand as my favorites. It seems appropriate to let them see the light of day (or the screen) as a tribute to my affection for them.