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Travel Foreman explains his departure from Animal Man

Animal Man #9, by Travel Foreman

Following today’s creative-team reshuffling that sees Steve Pugh return to DC Comics’ Animal Man, artist Travel Foreman stopped by the Comic Book Resources forums to explain why he’s leaving the well-received series for Birds of Prey.

“The change on Animal Man boils down to the reason I was on the book to begin with, which was that I needed to take on a job after my mother died (to deal with the financial end of someone being sick for a while and then passing) and Animal Man was the only thing DC was going to let me do. Which in any other time frame would have been perfect,” Foreman wrote. “But really the context of me dealing with the death of my mom and drawing the kind of content in Animal Man just burned me out sooner than I thought.”

Foreman, who before Animal Man was best known for his work on Com.x’s Cla$$war and Marvel’s Immortal Iron Fist, launched the series in September with writer Jeff Lemire as part of DC’s New 52. But with the solicitations for March’s Issue 7 came the news that Pugh would fill in as artist — well ahead of today’s announcement. Pugh continues his fill-in with Issue 8 before becoming the regular artist the following month.

“I had hoped to stay on the book until at least the spring so that the artist I wanted to replace me was free from his commitments,” Foreman continued, “but I would have ultimately just dragged the book down if I did, because it was becoming harder and harder to concentrate on the work.  Steve was bending over backwards on his fill-ins to keep the book on schedule so you have to keep that in consideration. Really, he won’t skip a beat once he’s doing the book full time.”

On his blog, Lemire wished his collaborator well, writing that, “The success of Animal Man is due in no small part to Travel’s artistic vision and I was lucky to have worked with him.”

(via The Beat)

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28 Comments

My best wishes to Travel. I think I’ll pick up BoP now.

Im probably going to start picking up BOP now, I know how the loss feels. Hope he recovers.

In other words, Foreman finds drawing the story of the Bakers as difficult I find reading it. Don’t get me wrong. This is a good comic, but it’s a harsh one and I am not finding it that much fun some months. Interesting that the artist is as overwhelmed.

Makes me wonder if the reason I like Sweet Tooth more is that Lemire drawing his own story allows him to interpret things with less of an edge.

Foreman was a master in Animal Man. Sad to see him go. Pugh has a more superhero-y take and the title will not be the same. But I think that it’s a good change overall. If nothing else, will make BoP sales that much better.

“Travel” You know Ive been one of your biggest fans long before you ever broke in, from the days of posting art on the message boards of wildstorm and topcow, to the brilliant sample you did of The Authority vs The JLA that helped launch you into the eventual stratosphere. Im gonna be honest, you put out visual gold on this book, but Ill support whatever path you take.

Ugh, I’m so sorry to hear that. It must’ve been torture drawing that kind of stuff so close to the death of a family member. I’m sorry to see him go, he’s 85% of the reason Animal Man is such a divine comic, but I totally support his reasons. He’s gonna be a REALLY tough act to follow, though.

COMPLETELY understandable. It’s got to be really screwed up to have to draw a book like Animal Man when dealing with something like your mother dying. It’s amazing he hung in that long, money issues or not.

I really feel for him; I’m very close to my mother, so the day she passes – which, thankfully, should be a good long way away – will be a day when my heart is broken for a good long time. I’m not sure I’d be able to deal with material like that in a creative fashion. It’d probably make things worse on me.

My condolences to him, I really wish Travel well and much success.

Very sad. I’ve lost a parent in the past and I know very well how he feels. Like someone said already, Animal Man really is a book with very harsh content and is not recommendable to everybody to say the least. Especially someone dealing with that kind of loss recently. Travel is an amazing talent and I wish him all the best in his future work.

It’s sad, but to be honest, I think him going through his mom’s death is what has allowed him to create what he has on paper and why this book’s been so great. The writing is superb, but the art really took this book to a new level. It’s not the typical comic book art you think of. You can see and feel real emotion on this book based on the style alone. It will be sad to have him replaced as this is my number one book at the moment.

Well, that’s unfortunate. And I feel sorry for his lost.

It’s good that they find a great artist such as Steve Pugh as replacement though.

It’s really sad about his mother, but his art is still makes me want to vomit. Not in the sense of content, but in the sense of form.

My condolences on your loss and good luck on the new assignment, your a great talent. I will definitely continue picking up Birds of Prey, but I’ll miss that crazy beautiful stuff you did on Animal Man.

Birds of Prey is not going to be the same. That’s my problem. Sorry that that’s how Travel feels about drawing Animal Man, and if the only other job he can get is drawing BOP, that’s fine. Someone just point me in Jesus Saiz’ direction.

Best to Travel, sorry for his loss.

Sorry, Travel.

You’re the best artist in the world.

Foreman’s way of drawing human expressions as well as monstrous burps was really a major reason that book took off. It is very difficult drawing horror in an all new way. I can still see Maxine crying in the kitchen in issue #1 – hilarious. I just can’t imagine it drawn another way

I never knew – I can’t believe he was able to draw those stories for that long under those circumstances. An amazing artist and an amazing man.

Sad to see him leave the title. I’ve become a big fan of his work with this short run on Animal Man.

How awful, Travel’s work on Animal Man has been superb. Some of the best in the whole relaunch if you ask me and I can’t imagine his anguish having to draw that much death and carnage with the loss of a loved one fresh in his mind. I hope the expense wasn’t too much of a burden for him and that DC are taking care of him financially for doing such outstanding work during such a difficult time. Steve Pugh is great but the renewed Animal Man won’t be the same without Foreman’s brilliant pencil work.

I can’t imagine this book being drawn by anyone else. He really did some haunting, fantastic work and I’ll be sad to see him leave Animal Man.

Gonna Miss Foreman. His art was perfect for Animal Man. At least PUGH is doing the artwork now, good replacement. Sucks for Foreman having to go through such a burden.

Just chiming in to agree with others-Foreman’s Animal Man was special. Condolences & best wishes. We will all look forward to whatever he chooses to create next.

Judge Fred MANSON

February 10, 2012 at 12:57 am

Wow… It is in these bad situations that we, readers, know that the authors are not writing/drawing tools in the hands of any publishers, but true humans.

RIP Miss Foreman, you can be proud of your son.

Definitely going to miss Foreman on this book. He bought a unique style and energy to the book. I will definitely be looking forward to seeing him work with more of my favorite writers in the future.

Travel did a fantastic Job . Steve Pugh is one of the best artist to do the last series and my favorite . He can draw Animals better then any comic book artist I know. He will be great. Now that the story is becoming more about the rot it will be good to have some who strengths include life like creatures of the wild .It will be the perfect evolution. the great news is that Travel is still working and hopefully will now be happier so everybody wins especially the fans.

It is in these bad situations that we, readers, know that the authors are not writing/drawing tools in the hands of any publishers, but true humans.

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