Anyone who has installed an ink cartridge in his or her printer has likely encountered four familiar colors, cyan, magenta, yellow, and black. No, you didn’t accidentally buy a cut-rate cartridge; these are the four colors that comprise the four-color printing process, the dominant means through which comic books were produced from the 1940s through the 1970s. Comic book publishers sought to lend a level of depth to their books that black and white alone could not offer. Unfortunately, four-color printing wasn’t the panacea they thought it would be; what it was though was an iconic style unto itself.
Pick up an older comic book and take a look at the heavily saturated colors, the dot-matrix style of printing, the way the colors bleed into one another. It creates a unique visual aesthetic that instantly evokes the feeling that only comes with thumbing through a comic book. From paper to ink, comic book quality has improved tenfold over the years, but now Vertigo is paying homage to the medium’s past with a brand new series we’re proud to exclusively announce. Meet Vertigo Quarterly: CMYK, an anthology series inspired by the printing process that helped define the medium as we know it, written and illustrated by some of the top creators working today.
Here’s the official description from our pals at DC/Vertigo:
The four colors that are the basis of comic coloring—CYAN, MAGENTA, YELLOW, BLACK—serve as the inspiration for talent to push the boundaries of short storytelling in the VERTIGO QUARTERLY: CMYK anthology series.
Starting with stunningly simple, bold covers, CMYK will defy all conventions of traditional comic book anthologies. The unifying color may suggest a mood, a plot point, a coloring technique—limited only by the imagination of the incredible talent involved. Starting with CYAN this Spring with stories and art by Jock, Fabio Moon, James Tynion IV, Martin Morazzo, Robert Rodi and Javier Fernandez, Amy Chu, Joe Keatinge, Cris Peter, Shaun Simon and Tony Akins and more! Followed by MAGENTA in summer, YELLOW in fall and BLACK in winter, you’ll see color throughout the year as only Vertigo can deliver.
Sounds pretty cool, huh? Here’s the other three covers too:
Click to expand the thumbnails.
I’ll leave you with a quote from Don DeLillo’s Underworld.
“A photograph is a universe of dots. The grain, the halide, the little silver things clumped in the emulsion. Once you get inside a dot, you gain access to hidden information, you slide inside the smallest event.”
Vertigo Quarterly: CMYK #1 arrives April 30th. Will you be picking it up? Let us know in the comments below.