STUDIO TOURS: IDW Publishing

Wed, April 30th, 2008 at 4:14pm PDT | Updated: April 30th, 2008 at 4:59pm

Comic Books
CBR News Team, Editor

Based in San Diego, California, IDW Publishing was founded in 1999 as a division of Idea and Design Works, a graphic design and production company, before quickly growing into the full-fledged comic book publisher behind such original titles as “30 Days of Night,” “Uno Fanta: The Art of Ashley Wood,” “Locke & Key,” “Fallen Angel” and numerous licensed books including “The Complete Chester Gould’s Dick Tracy” as well as comics based on “Star Trek,” “CSI,” “The Transformers” and Joss Whedon’s “Angel.”

Under the direction of Publisher/Editor-in-Chief Chris Ryall, IDW Publishing has been recognized by Diamond Comic Distributors as Publisher of the Year in 2004, 2005 and 2007. Taking some time away from 2008’s projects, Ryall invited CBR on a tour of IDW’s new offices.

By Chris Ryall, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief, IDW Publishing

IDW’s founding four (on the first day of operations, April 10, 1999):

1. Alex Garner

2. Ted Adams

3. Robbie Robbins

4. Kris Oprisko

For the last four years or so, we’d been in a smallish office park and had grown to a point where some people were doubling up offices, and the boxes of comics began to accrue around every corner. With our recent growth, it was time to move. We did, only about a mile away, but closer to an area in San Diego called Pacific Beach, and with ample more space.

The following pictures were taken nine years to the day after IDW opened its doors, April 10, 2008. We moved a little over a month ago so some art will still be hung, some color added, and a more lived-in feel will come. But for now, it’s all shiny and new, and most importantly, spacious.

The view of the office from the 5 freeway S. There needed to be hazard pay for the taking of this photo.

Outside the hallowed halls. No solicitors or blown deadlines allowed in.

C’mon in, have a seat, and read a comic or two. We wait until everyone’s had a chance to properly look over the “30 Days of Night” movie art hanging on the walls before bringing them back….

The office was once staffed by Kashi, so you can see through the entryway doors that they left a full kitchen but, alas, we’ve yet to come across a big stash of leftover boxes of cereal, Dharma Initiative-style.

The view from the inside, leading to the production department and the editorial bullpen.

An artist in repose: Ben Templesmith, showcasing his wares. And is that a self-portrait in front of his face…?

The reverse view, the walls covered with movie posters from the various projects we’ve done.

Inside the production office, new editor Denton Tipton and production whiz/A+ letterer/”Transformers” writer/gadfly Chris Mowry.

Into my office now.

(1) Framed on the wall next to some Ben T. art is my lone Eisner nomination, which someone just pointed out to me is like framing a Publisher’s Clearinghouse “you might already be a winner!” mailing.

(2) The very first autograph I ever got as a kid, and it just happened to be Superman creator Joe Shuster:

(3) Wally Wood’s 22 Panels That Always Work. This should be handed out to anyone with any aspirations to work in the business.

Around the other side - and please make note of the adamantium bars on every window and door in the office. And they’re not there to keep people from getting in, but rather…

(1) The Angel puppet, perched atop the Spike puppet, just for all you “Spangel-‘shippers”

(2) Marvel’s 1980 Dr. Strange calendar, which just so happens to match up to this year’s dates:

(3) The one existing “Chris Ryall” action figure… ChrisCharger, designed and built by a Transformers fan at BotCon a couple years ago:

(4) Artist Zach Howard’s hat. Just to prove to him once and for all that I didn’t throw it away when he left it at our con booth three years ago.

[Editor's Note: IDW asked that CBR obscure one section of Chris's book case in the above photo as it would reveal some upcoming work to come that they're not quite ready to discuss. It is big, though.]

Around the other side of the office, among the highlights on the bookcase are a copy of pretty much every copy of everything IDW has ever published, are the 10.0 CGC’d copy of “Zombies vs. Robots” #2, the Mick figure from the Rocky toy line, the Japanese book cover for Clive Barker’s “Abarat,” a Kiss “Destroyer” clock gift from Gene Simmons, and Bobblehead Dwight keeping an eye on some Lego Indiana Jones. Most important of all? The lock on my office door.

Thanks very much Chris and everyone at IDW Publishing!

Now discuss this story in CBR's Independents forum.

STUDIO TOURS

TAGS:  studio tours, idw publishing, chris ryall

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