On shelves both physical and digital this week is issue 342 of the Judge Dredd Megazine, which contains my chunky interview with artist Will Simpson.
Will is best known to 2000 AD fans as the artist on Judge Dredd and War Machine, Dave Gibbons’ reboot of Rogue Trooper in the late ’80s/early ’90s. But since then he’s made a name for himself in movies and is now the concept designer/storyboarder for HBO’s adaptation of George RR Martin’s A Song of Fire and Ice. Which you may have heard of.
Here’s an extract:
‘Aw man, this is just my favourite space at the moment. I was asked to do some concept work way, way back at the beginning to help HBO make decisions about coming over here. Our producer Mark Huffam had got me in to do some work with the production designer.
‘So I’d worked on that stuff and gone on to work on Your Highness, not knowing we were going to get Game of Thrones, then Mark told me we’d got it. When the pilot was happening the beautiful thing for me was I got to design all the main weaponry the heroes were using, the big swords like Ice and Needle and Long Claw and Wolfhead, all of these things I got to design for the show. Also other incidental things like big carriages and some of the concept stuff about what the world might be like.
‘Then I did the storyboards for it – there was a whole completist approach to that which then carried itself into the first season where it was a bigger art team, I did less conceptual work but I did the designs for the White Walkers, probably one of the first paintings of the Godwood Tree, so there were all of things that had an influence on look of the show.
‘I’m really pleased about all of that, that’s a really cool position to be in.
There’s a lot more to the interview than just that – it also includes when Will made a fateful decision that included Ryvita and the time he was nearly blown up by the IRA.
Also in this issue is some fabulous work by Arthur Wyatt, Henry Flint, Rob Williams, D’Israeli, Alec Worley, Ben Willsher, Dan Abnett, and Colin MacNeil. Is good. Is nice. You should buy, yes?