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September 13, 2006

George O'Connor, Journey into Mohawk Country

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When editor Mark Siegel told me that he was looking for some non-fiction graphic novels for the new Firstsecond imprint, I pitched the idea of what would eventually become Journey into Mohawk Country. Using as my only text the actual journal kept by a 17th century Dutch barber/surgeon, I would fill in the gaps of his story, as they were suggested by what he wrote. Good idea, but I had to prove that I had the chops to draw what I had suggested. This four page sequence, a selection of Harmen van den Bogaert’s journal entry for December 23rd, 1634, was part of my original proposal. It survives in a very similar, but expanded, fashion in the final book. It’s interesting to see how boring and stilted the Dutchmen look as opposed to the Mohawk characters; At this stage in the story, I had envisioned them much more as passive observers, rather than the actual characters they would eventually become. Also, how much cooler is it to draw a bunch of Mohawk warriors than some silly looking guys with bad hats? I mean, really.

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