This Looks Cool: Hayden Sherman is Taking Over July

Welcome to a new feature we're trying out here at Panel Patter, "This Looks Cool!" It's a chance for us to highlight an upcoming series we think Panel Patter readers might be interested in checking out and putting on their advanced pull lists. 

Blink #1 by Christopher Sebela, Hayden Sherman & Nick Filardi and published by Oni Press
FOC: June 26
Anticipated Release Date: July 27

Above Snakes #1 by Sean Lewis, Hayden Sherman & Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou and published by Image Comics
FOC: June 20
Anticipated Release Date: July 13

Dark Spaces: Wildfire #1 by Scott Snyder, Hayden Sherman & Ronda Pattison and published by IDW
FOC: June 6
Anticipated Release Date: July 13

It turns out that July is going to be quite the month for the Panel Patter favorite, and comics’ dearly beloved rising superstar, Hayden Sherman. Not only do they have an original series debuting in the month of July with one of the industry’s biggest names, but they also have two additional creator-owned series debuting with a couple other well-established indie writers.

Sherman is no stranger to quality visual content. And the proof is in their resume. Swinging from one miniseries to the next we have seen plenty of content from them over the last several years, but for whatever reason it feels like more necessitates more. When there was no new Sherman on the shelf at the comic shop it was a noticeable absence.

Titles such as The Few, Wasted Space, Mary Shelly Monster Hunter, Thumbs, Cold War, and most recently Chicken Devil, Hayden Sherman is making themself one of the most sought after young artists in comics. Their talent has made huge leaps forward in recent work as it goes without saying that Sherman takes each page as a graphic design project where each page has an intent and so space or panel is wasted. The final volume of Wasted Space compared to the first is about the best case-in-point one could ask for. By no means does this infer that early-Sherman illustrations are something to take pass on. What I am saying is that an already stellar artist took their craft and honed in on it to give rise to their work above their peers. Each page in Sherman's recent books have been crafted and designed aesthetically and conceptually to not just materialize the story but also to gravitate the medium.

If Sebela, Lewis, and Snyder are looking for someone to take their stories to the next level then they absolutely found the right artist to do it.

First up is the series due out last in the Sherman-trifecta. Blink, an Oni Press publication during their 25th anniversary year, finds Sherman collaborating with Christopher Sebela; a second time collaboration after having worked on Cold War together. Blink is the story of an amnesiac journalist where CCTV cameras are watching every move. This is being described as a daring venture into bringing the found footage horror genre into the medium of comics. The thought of seeing Sherman tackle this genre and this subject matter is, frankly, pretty damn exciting. 

From the words of Sebela himself about Sherman drawing Blink:

“I send them my script with things as I see them best, but Hayden has a magical ability to translate it all into pages that I never would have been able to dream up. So as much darkness and claustrophobic spaces as we explore, there's an equal amount of way too bright, way too big and things that just don't make sense. We sort of untethered ourselves from a lot of spatial logic and let ourselves get just as lost as the characters in the book do.”

Based on the previous accolades, I am very anxious to see what Sherman can bring to this book.

The other two titles, coincidently being released on the same week in July, feature one with a collaborator of new and one with old; Sean Lewis being the familiar ground while Scott Snyder is the new venture.

Sherman will once again draw the story that Sean Lewis writes. Above Snakes from Image will be the third series where these two have worked together. First was The Few, then was Thumbs, and now it will be Above Snakes, a western where a man named Dirt seeks vengeance for his murdered wife. Seeing how Sherman visualizes a story of grief and vengeance will be as much fun it could be to become spectator to such a thing.

Alongside Lewis’ Above Snakes, Sherman will have another debut issue on the rack next to it with their first time collaboration with Scott Snyder in the first installment of Dark Spaces. Snyder has described this project’s ambition to be the start of a vast world-building mega story centering specifically on telling small, character driven stories. Dark Spaces: Wildfires is the catalyst to the project as Sherman takes the lead bringing to life the story of women in an inmate firefighting program choosing the score of a lifetime over fighting fire.

Goes without saying that I’m geared up for July. Hayden Sherman is a force to be reckoned with, hands down. If after looking at a comic illustrated by them and you don’t hear yourself saying "This Looks Cool" out loud ..then you’d best get those eyes checked.

Blink #1 Cover B Alterici

Blink #1 Cover C Trevor Henderson

Dark Spaces: Wildfires #1 Cover B Andreas Sorrentino

Dark Spaces: Wildfires #1 Cover C Tula Lotay

Dark Spaces: Wildfires #1 Cover D Liana Kangas

Dark Spaces: Wildfires #1 Sherman Interior Page