Sunday, July 10, 2011

2011-05-04 - AOL Original

Of Montreal's Art Director David Barnes Gets 'Weird' With New Book

David Barnes
Courtesy of David Barnes

Of Montreal not only just released the new EP 'thecontrollersphere,' but the Athens, Georgia-based musical magicians also put out a book by way of David Barnes, the band's resident art director who's also the brother of frontman Kevin.

With packaging and both cover and stage art under his belt, Barnes decided to tackle books, too, releasing 'What's Weird?' last week alongside of Montreal's record.

"I wrote stuff in it, but it's not telling a story," Barnes tells Spinner. "It's more something that you could just open up every day for a year, I would hope, and if you just looked for a second, you'd find something new; it's pretty dense because I draw so small.

David Barnes Book

Courtesy of David Barnes

"I always imagined that I would do a children's book -- that's just my style. But it's sort of the thing where what I wanted to draw wasn't always appropriate for children. With children's books, you start to think, 'Well, I have put out some things that are inappropriate for children.' And so you wonder if that would affect that, like, if you've ever drawn boobs, you can never draw children's books."

But Barnes says he'd still like to write a children's book -- assuming he hasn't been blacklisted by the book police, that is -- which makes sense, since he loves juxtaposition in his work.

"My favourite thing is taking two things that aren't related and putting them together. I don't know why I find that so much fun. But, I guess, that's kind of the basis of comedy," he says.

"Anything kind of anthropomorphic is kind of good -- any time you can take a part of an animal and attach it to a human. You can spend a lifetime drawing variations on the centaur; it's a man and a squid; it's a man and an eagle."

And Barnes has been working on another odd pairing for his next book.

"It's a graphic novel about a pregnant football player who's kind of dumb and never really says how he got pregnant -- that's not really important. But he's just such a good kickoff returner that no one makes fun of him about it," he says.

"But then also going on in the story is a secondary story of his unborn child, and it takes place in this sort of sci-fi fantasy world. It's based on the idea of what goes on in a foetus' mind. It can't just be blank; there must be something happening. It's the idea that foetuses are on this journey in their minds to reach being born."

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