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I think the lack of precision and deep focus is why it took me years to build up my work.
– Gil Kane
It was exactly an assembly line. You could look into infinity down these rows of drawing tables.
I just saw the emotion in everything, so I got to feel everything that was going on and that I was viewing, but I couldn’t think in terms of structure, which is the whole point of deep focus.
I was hired as a penciler.
Coming into the business, you’d pass through these little agencies until you got to understand what was happening in the business, unless you were really able to have a style strong enough to go directly to the publishers.
Most of us came out of Popeye, so turning Popeye into something believable was tricky enough.
Then the war became a real problem and along with other shortages, they started to have paper problems.
I was not too smart and constantly mouthed off and didn’t know anything.
Everything was sensory and I never saw the structure in anything.
Comics were going down for the second time and here, all of a sudden, came this thing and for the next fifteen years, romance comics were about the top sellers in the field; they outsold everything.
All of the penciling was consistently done by one person and the inking was whoever could finish on time.
If I had one quality that really ruined me and at the same time helped me, it was the fact that I never stopped looking, and by that time I was really working at it.
In other words, DC was never harmed by the paper shortages.
DC used to print up all of their pages, they were the only company that did it.
But generally speaking, people weren’t fired, art jobs were very hard to get, so something really calamitous had to happen to a person who was working there in order for you to find a space.
But I was also a big mouth, I started to develop a troubled relationship with Harry Shorten.
First of all there was a guy named Charles Nicholas, who used to do all of the inking that Jack and Simon didn’t do. Simon used to do splashes and covers, but Charles Nicholas, after a while, did the inside of all of the stuff.
Precision is not one of the qualities that comes out in my work.
I was hired to do as many Boy Commando, Newsboy Legion, and Sandman stories as I could.