Picnic Ruined is one of two comic releases this fall by the prolific illustrator and cartoonist Roman Muradov. Muradov’s work as an illustrator can be seen in publications such as The New Yorker, New York Times, Vogue or GQ but his beautiful comic work hasn’t shared the same spotlight. With these two new releases (Picnic Ruined from Retrofit and (In A Sense) Lost & Found from Nobrow) we may be hearing more about Roman Muradov the cartoonist.
Picnic Ruined is a story that follows a single, possibly autobiographical character through a dreamlike inner dialog. On a search for creative inspiration and escape from the mundane, he seeks refuge in a bookstore, pouring over obscure writers and asking such important questions as if “…more things should have foreskin”. The story becomes more surreal as the dialog focuses on battling the creative demons of self doubt and an attempt to capture a fleeting moment of true inspiration.
Muradov’s expressive line work is on full display as you are swept through the book at brisk pace with flowing text and panel-less design. As with much of Muradov’s work, it could easily stand up on the visual alone but thankfully the story and dialog add a deeper complexity to the book.
You can purchase a copy of Picnic Ruined from the Retrofit website or at a finer comic shop near you.