When I used go to a garage sale I’d find  myself looking for that box under a table or in a corner, that has a number of old comics, or better still the withered,  issues of the larger black and white  horror comics.  The cover still partially connected was a bonus, but not a necessity,  because the innards of these volumes were fuel that got my blood pumping, adventure, man not against man, but against the things that populated that space beyond us.     

Titles like the ones shown, were a constant for me when I had access to them.   Of course I read from the Marvel and DC pantheon’s of heroes, and attended a few conventions where this stuff was sold. It was never a consideration of how nerdy these hobbies might have seemed.  I was just as possessed by the mysteries of girls, so nothing good or bad had time to take much of a hold on me.  All and all, as strange as I’m sure it sounds I found a comfort in them,

Children sometimes grow up with horrors they can see, that are more frightening than the thing under the bed, or what they suspect is skulking in their closet.   If you could read about non existent monsters and were not  afraid, it made you stronger in dealing with those very real fears you lived with.

These books, though, were great reading and as much as they were supposed to rot your brain, they instead, at least in my, case helped me develop a slightly better vocabulary.  It was, without a doubt, the settings, the atmosphere they brought to your bedroom or the porch, or the tree in which you sat reading.

There was a change on the wind and as you walked down the path with the hero or the victim, there were few heroes that survived each story, and lived vicariously through the pulp paper and ink, through the talented writers and artists, you were as well exposed to new idea and ancient ones.

Some without even knowing, were in a school of sorts,a preparatory school. Some people got the message all wrong and came out horrors themselves, while others from the very same background, like Steven King, found this interest a wildly creative outlet and need we add a  profitable one as well.

All the way up into high school, in moments of downtime I read less and less of it. Too many other things were approaching that were  much more exciting than imaginary Aliens or fictitious monsters.  Moving out, getting my drivers license and that first apartment, not much could hold its own against that.

I recently found a site, though, that had mock magazine covers in which you could place your photos, finally making it to be on the cover of  vogue,  popular mechanics, or some sports magazine.

Much to my surprise, they had the titles I’d given much of my time and loyalty to as a youth and merely their names stirred fond memories, so I quickly  reached into own creepy catacomb of image files and slapped a few on covers. They were a perfect match.  They were so creepy, in fact, that I was taken back and not by some childish fear,  but because these covers, weren’t the efforts drawn from a artist’s feverish creative mind.

They were real settings and real creatures, and in a sense my past love for the horror genre has come full circle. From the boy who enjoyed the the reading of dark fantasies, comfortable in his assumption of what was real, and what was not, to  the man, in his own way, still looking into the dark, but now forever aware of the truth.

There is a site that allows you to create magazine covers using your own photos,  http://www.fototrix.com. It is a free site, but offerings are appreciated there.

Advertisements