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Archive - May 2011


Comix Talk for Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Short week but not necessarily short on comics.  Here's a few interesting stories to catch up on between catching on webcomics:

CAN YOU DIG IT: Once upon a time, Matt Madden slipped a slim jim into a comic.

SUPER ART FIGHTOn June 18, 2011, Super Art Fight returns to The Red Palace in Washington DC for a full card of bouts including marker-pugilists Super Art Fight Champion Michael “Spaghetti Kiss” Bracco, Chris “Impact” Impink, Nick “Ghostfreehood” Borkowicz, Jami “Angry Zen Master” Noguchi, Kelsey “Killer” Wailes and the undefeated Brandon J. Carr!

ON THE ROAD AGAIN: Author John Scalzi has a great post up on the pros and cons of the book tour.

MILESTONE: 12 years of Cat and Girl.  That's like a 100 years for a dog; 1000 for a webcomic.

INTERVIEW: An interview with Ivan Brunetti on his new book Cartooning: Philosophy and Practice --  a 15-week master course built on his practical experience teaching at the University of Chicago and Columbia College Chicago.

COMICS!: The Rumpus has built up a pretty strong webcomics section with an alt/indie vibe.

NOT COMICS: Hey you got your Portal 2 in my Project Wonderful! No you got your Project Wonderful in my Portal 2!

May 30th

Cory Doctorow on Pirates and Admirals

Wasn't Pirates and Admirals an XTC song? (maybe it should have been) Anyhoo a great short talk by author/activist Cory Doctorow on the history of copyright, technology and piracy progress.

May 27th

Comix Talk for OMG Time For A Three Day Weekend See Ya Bye

Despite my eagerness to hit the road for a weekend of memoralizing, there is a lot of webcomic news out there you might want to skim through amongst you know... actually reading webcomics.

MILESTONES: One of webcomics' really nice guys, Krishna Sadasivam announced he's putting his 13 year run of PC Weenies on hold.  He offered a number of reasons for his unexpected decision:

I want to focus more efforts on my illustration.  The audience for the strip has reached a plateau that has been consistent for the past two years. It’s frustrating, and I know I could have done more to promote the strip, but in the end, there’s really nobody to blame but myself. I take full responsibility for this.  13 years is pretty long for anything. I’m happy with what I’ve been able to accomplish, which is a body of work that spans well over a decade.

And a reality check:

Bills. I gotta pay ‘em, and lately they’ve been crushing me alive. We’ve had a few emergency setbacks recently (two huge car repairs, a crazy water bill from hell, etc.) that are putting the squeeze on us financially. Big time.  The time I spend on making the comic could be better spent on other income-generating areas, and right now I have to do what’s best for my family. (You could help and buy a book. And if you have, thank you. I really do appreciate it.)

It's not a 100% closing of the door to coming back to the comic later on and Sadasivam also announced a new Tumblr site where he's posting PC Weenies toons from 1998 to 2007.

HYPE: reports on Crossed: Wish You Were Here, a new Avatar project that will employ the same web and print strategy of its successful Freak Angels webcomic.  Crossed will be Si Spurrier and Javier Barreno -- starting this October.

NOT WEBCOMICS: Vulture Magazine leads a critical investigation.  No it's not that kind of cup.

MUST SEE TEEVEE: Law & Order: Webcomic Unit.

INSPIRATION IS 99% SELF-INFLICTED PAIN: Thanks to Reality Amuck for linking to this funny Whomp! comic on the creative process.

May 25th

A Future for Editorial Comics?

A few definitions first: when one says "editorial comic" pretty much everyone thinks of something like this.  Caricature + obvious summation of current news event + labels.  It's a long tradition in America that continues to hold on in major newspapers.  There's also a long standing thread of politically aware commentary in comics as a whole which one can trace back through Pogo all the way to The Yellow Kid. Somewhere in the middle is the group of comics that deals with comics and politics that mostly got its start in the weekly free newspapers that most major cities have. 

None of these comics seem to have a success story with any indepedent webcomic model.  (Please tell me if I'm wrong!)  Lately however, I've seen some interesting changes: Tom the Dancing Bug has moved to Boing Boing, a very popular blog and a progressive blog, The Daily Kos, has started a comics section organized by Tom Tomorrow of This Modern World.  It places these comics out of a "comics" context and more in the context of their point of view. 

Also worth checking out is the first part of a Daily Crosshatch interview with opinionated cartoonists Ruben Bolling, Tim Kreider, and Ted Rall.

Least I Could Do Animated Series

I didn't follow the news closely this week when Ryan Sohmer tweeted his allegations about a Candian company creating a copycat animated series using notes from meetings with Sohmer.  But apparently it turned in a positive direction with Sohmer starting a Kickstarter project to raise money to make a pilot of an animated show for his webcomic Least I Could Do.  One wrinkle apparently being that Kickstarter is limited to U.S. citizens so Randal Milholland has set up the Kickstarter effort for Sohmer.

May 24th

Comix Talk for Tuesday, May 24, 2011

I think we'll be doing the rolling blog post today - check back often (or at least when I tweet "done!")

Breathers by Justin Madson is a great sci-fi story.  I've been buying the issues and I still will probably get the complete volume now that it's out.

NEWSPAPERTRON READY: I saw that and GoComics announced that they are merging their sites on June 1, 2011.  On that date, will survive and I guess will go away?  Does that really make sense? Isn't the most natural URL to keep?

KNOW YOUR HISTORY: For a guy who reviews webcomics, El Santo also makes a good comics historian.  This time he gives a history lesson on Green Lantern (last time it was Red Tornado).

CATALOG OF BROAD SHOULDERS: Gordon McAlpin got some great reviews for his first print collection of his webcomic Multiplex, including from yours truly.  Good news for Gordon -- the book is getting its first listing in the June edition of Diamond Comics PREVIEWS catalog AND it's a Staff Pick.  Hopefully that will lead to more folks checking it out.

May 23rd

Comix Talk for Monday, May 23, 2011

AWARDS: Last week the Glyph Awards were announced - the winner in BEST COMIC STRIP OR WEBCOMIC was The K Chronicles by Keith Knight.

GREAT WHITE NORTH, EH: Daily Cartoonist notes that each Wednesday, For Better or For Worse creator Lynn Johnston has been posting a video podcast where she shares with her fans a little peak into her world as a cartoonist and creator of the Patterson family.

TRIP THE GLOBE FANTASTIC: Art Patient reports that portrait artist Jean Tripier has started publishing Travelogue, his travel journal online. It is a unique webcomic with ink and watercolor artwork that is based on (mostly) real events -- it's on Jean’s Travelogue website.

ON THE COMICS MEDIA: Graphic Novel Reporter has an interview with Brooke Gladstone, writer of the graphic novel The Influencing Machine and an interview with the illustrator Josh Neufeld.

I CANNOT BELIEVE THIS IS MORE THAN 20 YEARS AGO: TCJ reprints a 1990 interview with Jack Kirby.

May 22nd

Interview with Richard Thompson of Cul De Sac

The Washington Post's comic blogger Michael Cavna has a profile of Cul de Sac creator Richard Thompson in this week's Post Magazine.  It's really well-done, good read and Thompson's career and life story is particularly interesting.

May 19th

The Bifter: HTML 5 Webcomic

Jonathan Ingram writes about his monthly webcomic, The Bifter:

[My] main aim [is] to create a monthly comic that could be read by visually impaired users who use a screenreader, as I don't believe any exist on the web.


The category of jokes caters to a slim target audience, namely the web development sector, but it also showcases a combination of some of the new web technologies that are out there to create a retro comic feel (namely HTML5, CSS3, SVG and RDFa).


Plus because I draw the comic strips in SVG format, everyone is free to take a look at them (using their favourite image editing software) and use any of it as a base for their own work.


I would be most appreciative if you had any thoughts or opinions on the comic, or if you could give it a brief mention on your website. I would dearly love to let more people know about this so the design techniques can become more popular, and thus people who are visually impaired can enjoy comics as much as everyone else.

I think it's a great idea and the website is really well done.

May 18th

Comix Talk for Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Raindrops keep falling on my head...  The other day I dropped a Bueller reference and then had to wonder if my youngster colleagues would get it.  1986 afterall is quite possibly before some of them were born.  Time keeps marching on.  Wait whatever happened to Morris Day and the Time?

BRANDY YOU'RE A FINE WINE: Frank Cho is bringing back Libery Meadows.  And just as cool to me -- he's rerun the newspaper era run of the comic at his website. Just click on "first" and reread. Never quite great enough to crack the Calvin & Hobbes-level pantheon, still I thought Cho's work was some of the strongest in the paper when I was growing up.

HANG IN THERE: Wow I am re-inspired up today after reading Phil McAndrew's blog post about Super Obvious Secrets That I Wish They’d Teach In Art School.  You should definitely go read this today.  You can also check out Lisa Hanawalt's good advice too.

RACK 'EM UP: Apparently it was draw Cat Rackham day this week - Anthony Clark suggested that people draw Steve Wolfhard’s Cat Rackham to celebrate the release of Steve’s new book from Koyama Press, Cat Rackham Loses It. Steve has posted the results in a Flickr set of over 100 drawings. (h/t Drawn!)

CONVENTIONAL THINKING: I missed it last year, but apparently the Washington DC Comicon is returning for a second edition.  You can call that annual now!  It returns on June 19th with guests J.G. Jones ("First Wave"), Herb Trimpe ("BPRD: The War on Frogs"), the Luna Brothers ("The Sword") and John K. Snyder III ("Phoenix Without Ashes"). Hmm, that's Father's Day - I guess that might work out well for comic geek dads in the area.

THE PARENTHOOD: The Webcomic Factory is launching a new webcomic today called I Hate My Kids written by Tony DiGerolamo with art by Harold George.  “I wanted to do a kids comic,” says Webcomic Factory co-founder, Tony DiGerolamo.  “This comic embodies all the frustration parents feel towards their kids.  The kids, of course, are oblivious.”  Actually this reminds me to also plug Dadding Badly which is a cute strip by John Kovaleski about being a father.