Archives for posts with tag: comics

Ch-Ch-Ch-Chances are, if its between give and take, you’ll take-take-take

I remember fondly when you could embed Youtube videos to WordPress without paying them extra money on a Monthly basis. Those days are GONE and I swear to God it must chase people away to other sites. Blogger has a God Damn button on Youtube that will open a Video in a new window ready to post to your blog. I suppose that’s the benefit of them being owned by the same company.

I will continue this thought it a bit about Marketing below, so if you’re not into that, I’ll tell you when to stop reading.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Check that the fuck OUT, right? Its a comic book I made and its real on dear god does my studio floor need a repaint.

I got home last night after a particularly raucous night out and found out the Proof had been delivered for my perusal. Its beautiful. The print is fantastic, and it makes the monotone elements look so rich and deep, and the best things about it is that its scaled properly. I was worried that because it wasn’t drawn to 100% American comic standard size it might sit weird on the page but again my fear was unfounded.

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This means that it’ll be available mid-march for all you hungry boys and girls to get your hands on. If you want a signed copy then please do get in touch. I’m doing some sketch copies too with drawings on the back page. There is a fly leaf at the back with enough space for me to personalize the books for folk.

Lookong at 50Signal #comics #makecomics #art #madius #reasonstobecheerful

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 And its getting more love than I anticipated.

I’m just going to quote a big slice of that review now:

50 Signal Issue 1 was great fun to read. It picks holes in the Spaceman sub-genre and you see flashes of 2001; A Space Odyssey, Prophet from Image Comics, Tim Quinn and Dicky Howett’s short comedy strips for Marvel UK and Doctor Who Magazine, Silent Running, The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and even some Euro SF weirdness like The Survivors by Leo. This is all mashed up into an ongoing epic that still holds onto the concepts of introspection and the lonely space traveller at its centre.

HOLY COW, right? That guy totally gets me and where I’m coming from. Gets my references and my inspiration and also is the first review to discuss my future intention with my plot. I want people to read 50 Signal and wonder what its all about. In an ideal world I’d like people to write speculative essays, but that might be a little too far.

Read the review, because it’s an example of a well written review, as well as because it likes me.

Up all night to draw Judges #2000ad #judgedeath #comics

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I’ve finished the inking element of my Judge Dredd/Judge Death collaboration with Brad Holman, I would have stitched it all together in Photoshop today except I got distracted by life and an incoming cold. I got this tickley cough. Man I hate it. But that’ll be available for purchase soon. I also did a Ro-Jaws picture too which I want to share with you but it needs some finalizing. I have this Pental (Pentel or Pental or something) Brush pen that’s essentially a self-inking paint brush that is AMAZING to do textures with. Its upped my shading game something shocking. I want to do a comic just of robots and just spend lots of time shading them.

Check this out though, first of all exhibit A:

Thats a photo I posted to twitter of the first page of an experiment. I just started drawing a comic from an idea I’ve had for a few years, so I pieced together a rough script/layout and started drawing. It was just me taking my mind off 50Signal for a bit. After I drew a Ghost Rider pic, inspired by Artist Kevin Popisil, Kevin posted this,

Exhibit B:

I want to work with this guy so much, that I’ve put together so many pleading emails to work on a script. The man works in these dirty, graphite lines that have so much meat to them that he was born to draw zombies and wights and the undead. Demons and aberrations should abound in a Kevin Popisil comic. Follow him on Twitter at @arisetodarkness. AND if you are reading this Kevin, I am sorry I have not put the proper accents in your surname, I have no idea how to do them on my keyboard.

The Big Punch Magazine is nearly here, which fills me with joy beyond comprehension. When that gets here, I’ll do a blog all about it. The preview for 99 Swords is online now and YOU CAN READ IT FOR FREE! It seems to be the embodiment of the fun and creativity comics should be all about, and I know Jon Lock and Nich Angell will blow the FUCKING DOORS off the comic world with this baby. I think we are in a bit of a golden age for indie comics right now. With printing at insanely high quality readily available to anyone, webcomics hosting sites allowing anyone to create personalized places to deliver their comics, and more Comics fairs and conventions that you can shake a stick at, anyone can make a comic. Indie comics are where the more out there ideas can flourish and develop and some fat dude can make a comic about a Space guy with no genitals flying about space finding weird things and Two guys, one of whom does a comic about the business of the afte3rlife and another who has a universe where Music is more or less magical power, these two guys who live no where near one another can put together their own magazine.

Important to note that Big Punch is more than just Jon Lock and Nich Angell though, its helmed by the equally fabulous Alice White and Lucy Brown putting their oar into the comic boat.

Psssssh.

There you go. I’m going to have some more beer.

Did you know that Warren Ellis took the name for Transmetropolitan from a song by The Pogues?

Yup there you go. Lesser know fact out of the way. Also, I don’t think the above lyric is right, I think the backing vocal just says something like Yip-aye-AAAY! but I like the title so there you go.

Ohh look, I finished a new thing.

Page Four

Its a short tale from Papercuts and Inkstains, an anthology comics we are doing for the Madius Initiative. Three short comics with different focuses and settings, because after all we are children of 2000 AD and want to copy them. I know that two people equally batshit as myself, Brad Holman and Rob Jones are doing a floppy format magazine with short episodic comics in. They haven’t announced it yet so I won’t say who but I am super excited about some of the ideas they told me about.

I’d like to do that in Inkcuts and Paperstains… do a series of stand alone comics that tell a big continuous story. I have sent a script to an artist of amazing talent for a comic called PROJECT MASK that will be the realisation of this goal. 8 pages that will within the confines of Cutstains and Ink Papers will tell a dissection of power and philosophy in Super Hero comics. I liked the idea of Dr Manhattan in WATCHMEN. A man who is a God that people turn to as a Superhero, but can never be a hero as he thinks beyond the realm of human thought. Someone with huge amounts of power, seemingly infinite power, could never connect with ordinary people as its understanding of the confines of reality are far beyond ours. Looking at the universe in terms of quantum construction and the infinity of space and time the individual wouldn’t matter. With PROJECT MASK I want to look at someone who has such power he cannot understand humanity, but wants to save it. The Artist will be Brian Burke, whose work I present to you now:

Brian BurkeI am working on my best albums of last year, I’ve just not been in writing mood recently.

Still raising money for Cancer Research by not being a screaming alcoholic. Please donate not because not drinking is worth anything, its not, lots of people do it all the time. Some people don’t drink ever, its more that its a good cause.

Currently I’m reading Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Humans and Other Animals by John Gray. Its a anti-humanist look at the things we believe make us important as a species. Its an interesting read serving a a whirlwind tour of Philosophy, through the Ancient Greeks right through to more modern philosophers, including a few quite mean passages about Neitzsche, blasting apart the idea that as a species we can transcend our role in the natural world via technology and science. It says we can never be the masters of our own destiny as we aren’t masters of our own drives. We are animals with animal needs therefore everything we do will be in service of those needs. As an optomistic sort, I don’t agree with it full, but its ideas on the sense of self, the illusions of morality and the arrogance of Western Christianity versus Paganism and Eastern religion is interesting. I’m looking forward to finishing it, not just to shake off its sense of Morbidity, but also to start reading Weird Realism: Lovecraft and Philosophy by Graham Harman. Whist Lovecraft was a collossal Xenophobe, his mythos and richly span interspacial realities are unlike any other writer before him and am excited to look into it in more detail.

My reading pile is huge. Got a stack of books to read, mostly non-fiction. I have been gripped by a huge need to learn more this year. I boguht a copy of The King In Yellow by Robert W. Chambers because it was mentioned in an article I was reading about Weird fiction in preparation for my Love Craft book, and as I bought it the cashier asked “Are you a True Detective fan?” and I told him I hadn’t watched it, and he looked puzzled. Apparently the book is quoted directly in the show and the villain is called the Yellow King. This has lead to massive sales of the book, and it striding merrily up the Amazon best sellers list. So there you go. Read an article where someone accused the shows writer of plagarism, and I find it hard to believe that you can be accused of plagiarizing a 100 year old book by directly quoting dialogue from it out of context.

Also on its way to me, AMERICA MASTODON by Brad Ricca.

Anyway thats me done, I’ll leave you with a few sketches I’ve done. Working on an Akira piece at the moment, and will soon start work on formatting 50Signal for Print, which is always laborious. I’ll enjoy this while I can.

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Hey ho,

Might jump right back into the comics love if that’s ok.

SUPREME: BLUE ROSE

Blue Rose

Every once in a while I read something that just blows me away. The first time I read a Sandman comic, the first time I read The Umbrella Academy or Narcopoilis or Maus. These are comic series that you read and knew they were different and were saying something and were expanding your mind. Blue Rose is astounding, Warren Ellis delivers an astonishing story once again. The writing is dense and not overwhelming, its clever without being pretentious, and it is gorgeous. The art work is unlike anything else I have seen, its filled with Tula Lotay’s personality and its beautiful beyond compare. I have bought several copies of it with different covers just to own more of Lotay’s work. I could give you a break down of the story but it’d be without a doubt useless, because whatever description you put on it would just diminish its freakishly complex story. I said this to Tula Lotay and I’ll say this to you:

“The more I read this comics, the less I understand, not just about the comic but the world around me”

7String

7string

Nich Angell. Nich Angell. Nich Angell. 7String Volume 2 is brilliant. It looks great, it reads great, and its a continuation of a series thats just blasting holes through the competition. In a world where Music dominates everything, one man wants to use it to dominate everyone, and one young mans path for vengeance takes center place in this comic book opera. I can’t say how much I love this, and I don’t want to because I seem to go on about it all the time anyway. But its one of my stand out books of the year.

The Red Mask From Mars

Red Mask From Mars

Thrill seeking Astronaut Doug Stewart goes to mars and gets a symbiotic alien attached to his face giving him super strength, speed, agility and the power to punch evil in the face. Now with its official first issue the Red Mask From Mars shows us its titular character in action hammering an explosive into the eyeball of a city block sized squid with a carpentry tool. Vince Hunt delivers the art and writing, and this is his first comic and if he has other stuff going to come out evolving from the quality hes squeezed out here we will all die from the radioactive quality it’ll release into our atmosphere. The reason I love it is because its the sort of knock about fun British comics were built on. Before Dredd was Karl Urban he fought a talking car called Elvis, and had a shoot out with a robot cowboy on the moon, SO YOU KNOW;

Vince Hunt is that child of these comics and he has fun in his stories without sacrificing story, pace, characterization or depth. Buy it online.

The Punisher

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Some dick described the Punisher 2014 as a Hipster Noir, and I call this guy a dick because he was being dismissive, and because it meant I had to go out and buy it immediately. The Punisher is a 2D cardboard cut out with a guy who kills people because someone pissed him off by killing his family. Nate Edmondson puts a halt to this by giving the Punisher a driven and self aware internal monologue, and killer set pieces brought to life by Mitchell Gerads’ mix of sketchy blacks and detailed line work. It puts the Punisher firmly in the Marvel universe and gives him purpose and emotion like hes not had for a while. Frank Castle has had a hard time. I mean the guy died and came back as a Frankenstein’s monster style beast. He deserves to be classy and cool for a bit.

Moon Knight

Moon Knight

Warren Ellis and Declan Shalvey bring my favourite masked crime fighter back into his game, and bring him back down to earth by having him tackle street crime on in the alleys of New York. Warren Ellis knows a few things about Moon Knight, first of all that he is batshit insane, and that he is best when his psychopathic disregard for human life makes for a great fight scene. He’s like Batman who doesn’t pretend he’s actually good. In this short run, Moon Knight, working closely with the police as Mr Knight, tackles all sorts of crime from an infestation of shared killer dreams, ghost punks and five floors of gangsters who all need a beating. I love it, and really if you like a good bit of weird crime, you would too.

Marceline and the Scream Queens

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I like Adventure Time, I like Meredith Gran. Combine the two together and you get the story of Marceline the Vampire Queen heading out on tour to bring the power of rock to the world. Its filled with that wonderful creativity that runs through the TV shows veins, but with a heaped tea-spoon of musical humour. The art is kinetic and has a fine balance between Gran’s own personality and the shows unique aesthetic. I just like it.

I’m done with this one for now, I am tired again and could talk for days about what I liked from this year. I’ll probably do another one before the end of the year and tie it all together. I’m trying to get a load of junk off the ground before the final days of 2014 and its all been a bit of a rush. My heads a shed.

So thanks for reading, and enjoy the Christmas stuffs. I will write shit some stuff before the end of the year, because I have to do a run down of the years albums, on this my new REVIEW BLOG, apparently. I will go back to being a shouty opinionated tosser fool later.

I feel like talking about a few comics I really enjoyed this year. Its been a spectacular year for comics, with a lot of people really blasting away in their field. Whether in small press or at Image, mostly Image,  can I talk about how create Image are doing? there has been a huge amount of great comics flying into your face and mouth. I’m going to talk about comics I bought this year, but mostly ones that CAME OUT this year, even if it was just one volume. So…

YOUNG AVENGERS

The Young Avengers is the best super hero team up book I have ever read, with an ensemble cast I have never encountered before doing things I don’t know much about, the book not only makes me care about them but introduces me to a fully fleshed out world where weird named alien’s drive about space in a hover Cadillac. Kieron Gillan and Jamie McKelvie do a fantastic job of the plots, layouts and the dialogue is just astronomical. It also introduced me to Kate Bishop, Hawkeye the second, who is probably my favorite character I’ve been introduced to this year. Strong female characters are hard come by in mainstream comics, (even though Young Avengers also has Ms America who is another fleshed out super nova of story telling) but I love Kate Bishop who also appears in:

HAWKGUY

Hawkeye is a paired down super hero comic, instead of presenting Hawkeye as the flipping off buildings shooting boxing glove arrows kind of guy, it shows him as a man trying to survive because all his friends are super heroes and he is a guy. Clint Barton lives in an apartment block and defends those he lives with from thugs and poverty and Hurricane Katrina, whilst making really human mistakes. It also features the more realistic fight between Hawkeye and AIM, (Taking up two whole panels) showing what sort of a world a real person operates in whilst everyone else has rayguns. Again, humanity is heaped onto every involved, the pacing is superb, and it does things with narrative and panel arrangements that other comics should take note of. Its also written by Matt Fraction who also wrote:

SEX CRIMINALS

Matt Fraction. MATT FRACTION. DAT MAN! I MEAN JEEZ, DAT FUCKING GUY! He’s written Casanova, Hawkeye, Fear Itself, Invincible Ironman, and MY GOD I will buy most things with his name on it. So I am sure that waters down any opinion I have on the subject because I would lick the mans shoes clean. But the team of Zdarsky and Fraction is a fine wine of comics. This is the story of two people who find each other, and find that they have a unique gift centered around orgasms. I don’t want to go into it too much but I’ll explain it to you like I have everyone else in my life: when they orgasm they stop time and they use it to rob banks. But its more than that’s, you’ve got the motives, the reasoning and the world wherein it all happens. The art is detailed and polished, the writing is knife sharp and clever, so clever and emotionally on point. Sex Criminals has a dark sense of humour which bleeds onto every page and it says so much about the way people view sex and how sex education operates in America. Its a tour de force. A Power house, one of those titles wherein Image is bashing it out of the park. Image, though:

PROPHET

Brandon Graham and a few artists of huge talent (Simon Roy, Gianis Milonogiannis and Farel Dalrymple) provide a universe filled with war, bloodshed, madness and the blurred lines of humanity and the individual. This is the story of Jon Prophet, man, warrior and clone who is fighting both sides of a war to restore the Earth Empire that once held the universe in its grip, and to resist its totalitarian force. Prophet has had another great year and I’m sure by this point you’re like “Nick you mention Prophet all the damn time”… well, yeah, but, IT BRILLIANT, and this year its third volume came out an started THE REAL SHIT. Its got into its stride and its companion pieces Earth War and Strikefile have added to the rich tapestry of Brandon’s Bat shit universe. Its all coming to a head and you’d be mad to miss out on its conclusion.

THE WRENCHIES

I felt genuinely ill reading the Wrenchies. The writing is so strong, so powerful, that when it gets into its third act and characters start dropping like flies and the wolrd of the Wrenchies is explored in full, it made my stomach flip and a sense of great darkness hung over me. You feel real danger, real disgust and real fear reading the Wrenchies. Its a tale of a group of kids, known as the Wrenchies, fighting Shadowmen demons in a post apocalyptic future where once you reach a certain age, the shadowmen come to take you away. But even though it starts one way, it flips and turns and weaves in rich elements to create a sprawling tale of magic, mystery, science, bugs and evil. Its the art as much as everything that give it its richness, Farel Dalrymple, a man whose surname I struggle to spell and fail to pronounce, give texture to every fungusy wall, a dirt to every character, and the still wet looking washes of his pages forge this texture that is as unique as its narrative. I loved this comic, and hated it for how much it spun me in, because it really puts you through the wringer. Its strongest passages are where it deals with the cruelty of childhood and even though it is a science fiction head bender, it has this core of humanity that is inescapable and bonds everything together.

GODZILLA: HALF CENTURY WAR

I couldn’t give a flip about Godzilla. I bought this because of Jame Stokoe and his art work. He takes up writing duties as well on this one man show, and I had every faith in his ability to spin a yarn that I invested inb this potted history of gigantic Kaiju destruction. Following one mans personal war on the towering destructonaut Godzilla, it jumps through history at a quick pace and is just a barrel of fun. All the old favourites are in it (mothra, Rodan, King Ghidorah) and the pages are packed with Stokoes trademarked detail and carnage, it was enough to get me super pumped for the rubber dinosaur. Even if you’ve never had the slightest interest in men in rubber suits treading on cardboard cities, this comic is wild enough to give you something to be interested in.

Just found out that even though I bought it early this year, BATTLING BOY came out November 2013, so whilst it should be on this list, it can’t be really. But its the tale of a young God, sent down to earth to prove himself powered by 12 mystical t-shirts that give him the power of a different animal. Its set in a world where Monsters flood the streets and after the death of the cities premier hero they are looking to find a new savior, and battling boy fills that slot. Its fun and engaging and really original and Paul Pope’s expressive art work really lives up to the story he weaves.

BLACKSAD

Blacksad: Amarillo came out this year, continuing the tale of Jon Blacksad, private detective, as he is tasked with driving an american’s Cadillac across america. This time it tells a story about the beat generation, bikers, circus folk and 50’s americana painted with a skill of writing and brush that is one of those landmark books in its field. Created by Juan Diaz Canales and Juanjo Guarnido, the series has some of the strongest characterisation of any book out on the market. Each story has its own focus and mostly unique set of characters whose animal appearance represents their personality. Senator Gallo, the stand in for Senator MacCarthy who turns up in Red Soul is a stoic Rooster bleating out from behind his podium and Blacksad’s old police chief as an Alsatian is a nice touch. The character design, the facial expressions, the stories dealing with diverse subjects like the fear of communism and race hate make it one of the greatest comics ever made. I’ve not even mentioned the amount of care that goes into framing and rendering every panel as a fine watercolour painting. Its beautiful, it reads beautiful, and you should go out and buy it.

Now…

go on, I’ll wait.

but anyway, tis late, and I’m tired and there’s far more to come.

So I’ll speak to you later Space cowboy.

NEXT TIME:

THE PUNISHER, THE SQUIDDER, SUPREME: BLUE ROSE, EXIT GENERATION, MOON KNIGHT, OTHER THINGS

CoverLadies, Gentlemen, and people of Non-binary Genders, I give unto you:

HARVEY SPIG in WHEN THE CIRCUS COMES TO TOWN

I am proud of this comic and I would be very grateful if you went and bought it. If you want a preview of it, you can read it here.

I have to go now, got a scary TV show to watch. Then I’m going to roll straight into the next project with Rob Jones.

He made me mention him, kept badgering me by text that I should write more about him. He wants me to write a novel about him. He wants me to live in his house. Robin Jones is deranged. He sent me this.

preview

I think the first time I ever totally fell flat on my face was when I performed Bo Burnham’s Words Words Words at a poetry event and I’d memorised it, completely, in fact myself and my Sister often spit hot bars of it at each other, but when I started chucking it out, no one even smirked. When you’re reading something, professionally recognized, as being hilarious, and you know you’ve got to read your own shit after, and no one even raises an eyebrow in humorous reproach you know you are doomed.

I really want to do an entirely word based blog.

I know that is essentially what a blog is, like right now you are reading my drivel but usually I pepper it with loads of photos and talk about art and comics. I am currently doing a LOT of colouring and its a sort of dull job, I enjoy it and am getting much better at doing colours, but its not very taxing on the mind. I’m also working on an art project with Robin Jones of Average Joe and more or less every indie comic coming out un til the end of time. He’s been sharing some of his recent projects with me and its enough to make me weep. I first self published Punk Rock Apocalypse six years ago and I am still without the powers to unleash my dream projects.

All this leaves me wanting to do short sharp blog posts with no particular theme or topic.

I really like Warren Ellis’ Morning.Computer. I thought it might be another cool micro blogging site, but it turns out its just Warren’s newest madness lens. But I want to do that.

Writing comics can be quite hard, in comparison to wiritng prose for example. If you think really cinematically then you can just story board a sequence of events and thats cool, but its not really pushing the medium out there, read something like Young Avengers by Kieron Gillan and Jamie McKelvie and you can see some things you will only see in comics:

I think that one, thats a good one, but not my favourite one.

That one is. I MEAN FUCKING LOOK AT THAT.

Anyway, so when I write a comic to keep things fresh and interesting and so that I never ever think about the terrible action of actually having to draw it or put it on paper, I write the story and the dialogue as one big mush and then slice up and refine it into a script. So I’ll have this big long chain of everything I want to fit into it and everything I want people to say, and then I thing what goes onto which page, and then what goes into which panel. If too much is going on in a page I find a way to get it in there from the big pack of comic book tricks people have got going. Things you can only do in a comic.

Leave a panel, as see above.

Panels within Panels. (The below from Hawkeye drawn by David Aja)

Infographics. I love a good infographic in a comic. (See Simon Roy drawing Prophet)

And the double page spread can be more than just a big image

The above picture is from the indescribably brilliant Desolation Jones that has some of the greatest page layouts and I REALLY wanted to put one up there that was just impeccable, but would ruin the story if you ever wanted to read it, and you should, you SHOULD!

Why even have panels at all anyway?

Fabio Moon, (FABIO MOON LADIES AND GENTLEMEN) killing it there with Casanova book 2, but look at the top and bottom panel. No panel borders and that totally gives you the sense of confusion and action. Its amazing how just not having a border can change everything about a page layout.

In fact I think the above image there, page 1 from Nausicaá Of the Valley Of The Wind by Hayao Miyazaki comes from Matt Fraction’s blog, where he talks about that panel, that mysterious second panel with no border. Its the only panel in the whole LONG ass novel that doesn’t have a border, and look at that sense of space, the way you smell the open sky spilling in from that boundless space.

So yes, I would like to do a blog of all words, but not today.

Anyway, there are lots of things you can do to tell a story and I don’t think you can fit these in either by yourself, or in a straight line. Back and forth relationships with artists is an amazing benefit to comics. If you write a script and expect an artist to just ratchet out the object exactly as you gave it to them I think you are doing it all wrong. If as an artist you simplify something to make it easier for yourself you are also doing it wrong. The envelope is there to push it surely. Embrace what you are both uniquely good at.

There are also a lot of Narrative techniques that you can only get in comics but thats another blog for another day.

Also: Want to be a great comics writer? Buy a book on art. Specifically, Buy THE book on comics art which is Scott McCloud’s Making Comics, and it’ll open your mind a bit on how you can layout a page. Its sort of like the Karma Sutra, no one can really expect to DO all the things in the book as it is illustrated in the pages of that oft turned book, but if it helps you put your knee in a new place it will revolutionize your love life.

Seriously though, lean in, and put the back of their legs over your shoulders or something.

Only in terms of comics.

Nighty night.

Hello,

I always feel weird writing the first words of a blog post. I always want to say something like “Hey Gang” or “Hello Chaps”, but its the most contrived thing to do. I don’t like it when I read it, why should I start my blog posts with it?

Anyway Images:

hamster

That’s my sisters Hamster, possibly the most tame thing on Earth.

So what have I been doing recently? Well, I’ve been doing writings with Robin Jones of Average Joe fame on Project Truncheon, which I think has had its full name released with a logo, but for me, for now, its still code name: PROJECT TRUNCHEON until I stick it up here. I like working with code names. I am also working on writing a graphic novel with the forementioned Mr Jones about the North of England and myths, legends and monsters. My input so far seems to be writing crazy essays on history and ancient religion and then doing nothing with them. I’d better send them over to him soon. When I’m done I’ll have so many pages of mad waffle, might put them together into an ebook or something. Mad Nick’s History of things.

My English teacher in college ended an essay he wrote to demonstrate HOW to write an academic essay with a Bob Dylan quote. In my first essay in University I included a picture of Robbie the Robot.

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I like to do a warm up of something other than what I’m working on before committing to the real work because it gets my hands and eyes moving properly. The most literal sense of a warm up. I also like to do Life Drawing classes every so often in order to loosen up my figure work. Stop people from just being a series of boxes when I draw them. Oh yeah, back to Rob for a second, Average Joe is being promoted at Nottingham Comic Con, and they’ve got free stuff and a competition, so if you are there keep your eyes open for them.

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And the endlessly Talented nicest guy in comics that is Nich Angell is starting a new kickstarter campaign to get 7String into peoples hands. Its the second volume and the first blew everyones minds, so you know, when that happens give him all of your money.

Heres a picture of him after leaving the rest of the boy band and on the verge of releasing his solo hip-hop album.

Look at him, couldn’t you just eat him up with a spoon?

Yeah, well done me for cementing my weirdo reputation just a little bit more. I do not want to be known as the creepiest bloke in UK comics. FORBIDDEN PLANET INTERNATIONAL have written a thing anyway about the next Volume of this amazing series.

One day I will do a blog post where I don’t mention how much I love Nich Angell’s comics.

One day I will do a blog post without mentioning how every blog post mentions Nich Angell.

Nick Gonzo’s Blog: The premiere location for Nich Angell News.

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Robin Jones is watching Utopia. Every couple of hours I get a text saying “Thank you for making me watch Utopia, I didn’t need all this time to do things and live my life. Thank you for delivering me from a social life into the hands of this TV show”

Luckily there are only 12 episodes.

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Aside from a few last minute washes to do Harvey Spig will star in WHEN THE CIRCUS COMES TO TOWN very soon. It was meant to have an october release date for its print version but that didn’t happen. I don’t always work reliably fast. So it’ll be in digital soon. Funk Soul Samurai awaits me to finish a cover, as does 50Signal, so the last part of the year will be awash with me doing comics for you.

Stu Perrins will be at Leamington Comic Convention with print copies of Prime, his Super hero comic, so go to that and buy them.

I will not be at any comic book fesitvals or cons, except Thought Bubble, where I will be a guest and we should all go for a pint and be friends. I’m going to quit the booze again for October, not to raise any money, just to lose some weight and that, but I will probably blog lots about it, because blog posts and Hot Chocolate are my alcohol replacement.

The new Alt-J album came out, and it was amazing. I was worried that it would be a steaming dog turd, seeing as their bassist left them between albums. The first album was so amazingly Bass lead, that I thought having him leave would be like removing Mick Jagger from the Rolling Stones, because whilst all the elements are really strong there is always something just a bit exceptional. As it turns out they’ve experimented a little bit more and found a nice strong direction for their difficult second album. Its got some great singles and musically is probably the stronger of the two albums they’ve released. Its not as original and haunting as the first, and how could it be the first was so out of the blue, but its certainly a good continuation.

Speaking of coninutaions, I watched Kick-Ass 2 the other day, and aside from the fact its not a hugely great movie, I was interested by the way there was a huge divergance from the comic. When Kick-Ass 2 the comic came out there was a little stir because THE MOTHER FUCKER (well done Mark Millar) rapes Kick-Ass’s then girlfriend NIGHT BITCH (award winning writer Mark Millar everybody) and its just another case of a guy bandying rape about like it ain’t no thing. But in the movie, when that moment comes, THE MOTHER FUCKER can’t get it up, and just physically wounds her. To comedic effect he tries to get an errection to go through with it, but instead fails to achieve lift off. I thought it was much better done that way. You can’t jam a rape scene into the middle of a dark, yes, but ultimately fantastical comedy. Its too serious a subject matter.

Its almost Monday now, I am going to go to bed. I’m cutting this a bit short, I want to talk about how awesome Aphex Twin’s new album is too, but I’m just too tired and my neck hurts from staring down at the computer balanced on my knee.

++++++

Nick

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***A brief edit***

I cannot get this out of my head.

Heres a blog post…

I got a new job recently, working proper nine til five for a few weeks before I start doing earlys/lates rotations and being able to squeeze more comics into the day. Right now I’m sort of shuffling about in comics limbo. But, I have been sticking with the sketchbook I promised myself I’d draw in. So here’s some choice cuts.

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You can see the four horses I got in the Grand National Sweepstakes above. All ran, two were dismounted including ol’ TeaForThree there who just happened to be the FAVORITE TO WIN THE BLOODY RACE and thus ended my first foray into the gambling world, in twelfth and fourteenth place. I place this game where I semi-watch TV and as quickly as I can draw peoples faces. None of them ever look like the people I’m drawing, but they look interesting enough to slip into comics. I am always looking for character designs.

Get this, when I was younger I thought that Character design was the be all and end all of comics. But ultimately, it isn’t. Like a Harvey Spig comic for example. I invent a bunch of people, then spend far more time drawing the main characters over and over. Per title I must come up with one or two new characters, then the rest are background faces you’ll see once or twice. Heres an example, in the next Harvey Spig I get to draw a bunch of demons. Here is the character design sheet for them:

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Thats your lot. In my days of Deviant Art addiction I’d do character sheet after character sheet of poses of mooks who’d turn up for a panel. Realistically, if you’re comfortable drawing a guy from several angles, you’ve won the hardest battle there. Only one person above made it into the comic, I thought the melty guy looked dumb and replaced him with something more threatening, and the cyclops is a quick drawing of someone’s twitter Av I liked. I wanted to get something of a similar look later on so I scribbled him down.

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Iron-man should go into space. If I had all that cash/money lying about I’d be off star-fucking the galaxy, ripping Galactus a new one, getting cosmic powers, finding the new world in SSSPPPPPPAAAACCCCEEEEE…

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I do miss my beard, but its growing back now. I realised I’d never actually drawn myself without one, so I ended up looking like Beaker with bushy hair. Also; adding AND BRING ME PICTURES OF SPIDER-MAN to any urgent request will only make you seem more cool and awesome.

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Half-Life 2 is the best designed game I have ever played. The detail and world building, the attention to story telling and plot progression, the fact it tells you NOTHING and you have to infer so much by exploring and reading and PLAYING the game. Its amazing. Its sick-wicked-cool. No game has had the same pull over me than Half-Life 2.

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Faces are weird.

Remember, trust no one whose sketchbook is filled with perfect pin-ups.

Mistakes are how we learn and learn to be AWESOME.

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I draw myself a LOT, not in a sort of self-celebratory way wither, I’m always a dumpy Gnome. I might do a comic about that, why I fantasize about myself.

I think its because I find it funny to stick me in daft situations, or because I’m a rampant EGOTIST.

Who knows.

That bear is a cool guy though.

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I’ve started doing life drawing as well, so when I have a few of those I’ll stick them online. Usually, in a hour and a half session half an hour is devoted to loosening up and sketching lines and shapes for the big one hour drawing, so I only ever leave with fragments of any use. I love Life drawing, I think if you don’t do it as an artist you clog up and get bogged down with how you think a person is shaped instead of how they’re actually shaped. Everyone is different, we have lumps and bumps and no one adheres to the stupid image forced into our faces my magazines.

You can always tell artists who don’t life draw because their women always look airbrushed.

I read a Supreme comic from the early nineties last night, and the women in it where fucking horrible. Their necks were thicker than their waists. Its like everyone forgot how the world worked for a while. You can see why comics were such a boy-club for so long, I felt disgusted just holding it. I imagine having to explain it to my daughter years from now. You know, when she exists.

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People keep thinking I have kids. Its probably because I talk about my hypothetical children a lot.

That’s MEANT to be Casanova Quinn from the super sweet comic Casanova by Gabriel Ba and Matt Fraction. I was experimenting, I’m not sure if it worked, but its worth mentioning.

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So there we go, Ten more Turnips from the Tip.

Hoped you liked looking.

If you have any thoughts or feeling please comment, or email me at nickgonzodraws@gmail.com

Have a nice evening.

Gonzymandius

Wolverine 1 Scud 1

Wolverine: Available for £10            Scud the Disposable Assassin: £10

Dr Doom Molly Hayes holding an Elephant

Dr Doom: £10                                             Mollie Hayes holding an
Elephant: Sold for £15

Just doing a bit of a £10 Sketch Saga update. I did a few new ones. I may make a page just of them, so if anyone wants to buy the ones that haven’t sold, you can, right here, RIGHT NOW! If you want one of these, or want me to do one just for you, email me at nickgonzodraws@gmail.com How come Wolverine wears a disguise? I mean he goes into battle wearing a Mask, and his identity is a mystery even unto himself, so, I doubt he’s hanging at the shopping center and he’s all, “hope no one bothers me”. Because he’s Wolverine. He doesn’t go to the Supermarket, and all his enemies know who he is, sort of.

Hey , look at this:

Mo Money Mo Spider-Man got published in The Low Road Magazine, which is really cool. Its nice to expand the market for a weird little comic like that. I also did the poster for their Record Label’s gig. Getting published is fun, but getting published when someone has picked your thing is ever better. Speaking of enjoyment, The Tree was reviewed by Big Comic Page:

YOU CAN READ ABOUT IT HERE

I’ve been looking into doing some more The Tree like short comics, especially considering that with heavy work loads you can sort of get bogged down with a lack of control over your art world… I had the idea of finishing a long form comic called Asazoic in between projects, but its hard to get into doing one or two pages of a project then disengaging, so I end up doing nothing. Short form comics allow me to do things rougher. The Tree was drawn smaller than usual, so I can do it on my knee, in fine liner, rather than at the drawing board. It creates a seperation.  Anyway, I’m going to be doing one in the next couple of months about a soothsayer in a Diner in a desert, but less about that the better. Another one I’ll be planning is called Fantasy Black Channel, which is named after an album by this band:

I love that video by the way, its like “Hey, this is going one way…. no wait… no it isn’t its going this way… no… wait… no it isn’t…” and I love that. Its just why I love Late of the Pier as a whole, because you have no idea what the hell is going to happen next. Its a serious shame they only ever did one album. But their songs give me all sorts of crazed ideas, and one of them related to your TV being a Psychic terraformer, preparing your mind for infestation from Parasitic Mind Worms. The mind as a frontier for invasion! So there you go.

Anyway, drop me an email

nickgonzodraws@gmail.com