Character Design: Bryan Lee O’Malley

Character artwork by comic book artist Bryan Lee O’Malley.

Ten years ago, O’Malley published the first of six books in his Scott Pilgrimseries, where the callow young man of the title fights for his aloof dream girl against an alliance of her “evil exes,” in a Toronto governed by the language, iconography, and logic of 16-bit video games. The director Edgar Wright adapted it into a movie that disappointed at the box office but constitutes a sizable fraction of all Tumblr content, and O’Malley seems to accept that outcome serenely. You can recognize the blithely witty banter of Scott Pilgrim in Seconds, but it’s a stand-alone graphic novel, indebted to the rounded, stylized figures of cartoonists like Rumiko Takahashi and the landscapes laid out in modern European comics, rather than the adventure manga his previous work suggested. It’s a book restless in scope yet quotidian in scale, an existential fable.

– Intro to a Q & A with Bryan Lee O’Malley at Slate (Link)

Character Design Evolution for Hazel, from Seconds:

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More art by O’Malley:



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