Archive - Feb 2011 - Story
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 28, 2011 - 10:10
So last day of February already. The year is 1/6 over already.
DEAD TREES: Zach Weiner's Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal - now with lots more fiber! It's a print volume titled Save Yourself Mammal! collecting the very funny, science-savvy comic, coming out this April. And the profits on the book will go to DonorsChoose which funds lots of cool science projects that will help today’s children grow up to become tomorrow’s scientists.
OLD SKOOL: Big Shiny Robot remembers Aaron Farber's Men In Hats. Farber's Pentasmal was pretty funny too.
MAILBAG: Jason LaTendresse writes about his new webcomic Three Panel Throwdown which just started up and updates on the 3rd, 13th and 23rd of each month (tri-monthly?) The webcomic has a good high-concept concept: one panel for each contender with the last panel revealing the winner. Not much in the archives yet -- Optimus Prime vs Prime Meat and Johny Cobra Kai vs. Johnny 5 are the first ones.
MOTION COMIC: Dean Haspiel has a new motion comic out called The Angel which is actually really good. I'm pretty sure I'm on record not really enjoying the vast majority of motion comic efforts over the last 2-3 years (but if not well now I am) so it's still not my favorite approach to story-telling, but this one does some things well. There is a real intelligence to how the panels are shifted, the limited animation included and most of all - the visual movement and appearance of the text is very good. Here it is - what do you think?
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 23, 2011 - 10:50
Just a side note to everyone -- I'm behind on everything online, it's not you, it's me! Hope to catch up before the end of the month.
MILESTONES: I didn't know Dwayne McDuffie, and although I was aware of his name in the industry I just never followed him specifically. It's always sad when a talented creator passes away too damn early and seeing all of the projects he worked on it's clear McDuffie was damn talented. GraphicNYC writes that it did a recent interview with him and that it will be up on their site next week.
- Richard Thompson (Cul De Sac) and Stephen Pastis (Pearls Before Swine) are two of the three nominees for the Reuben Cartoonist of the year award.
- Barry Deutsch's Hereville was nominated for a Nebula Award. (h/t Beat)
- The latest list of Xeric grant winners is up! A reminder that the next application deadline is 31 March. (h/t Fleen)
REVIEW: El Santo reviews Axe Cop.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 22, 2011 - 09:43
CRAFT: John Allison has some interesting thoughts on what he would have done differently with his Scary Go Round comic based on what he's learned since.
MARKETING: Do ads that pick up on the specific content of the webcomic work better? Dunno but Lauren Davis catches David Willis being funny with Penny & Aggie. Jeph Jacques takes a turn with it too.
HYPE: Comic Alliance has a preview of the webcomic-creator created Strange Tales 2 from Marvel. Weird, funny takes on classic superheroes. And from the ComixTALK blogs, Gail Scott, Space Pilot by Mark Toner starts this Thursday.
MCBOOKS: Just a thought - I probably should see if there are any good deals at Borders while it's closing up some of its mega-stores. Susie Cagle draws a comic about it.
COPYFIGHT: This short video with Neil Gaiman on why he doesn't stress so much about online piracy of his books is interesting mostly because it's Neil Gaiman but also he's got a point:
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 18, 2011 - 10:24
Well I'm writing this post so the first thing I'm mentioning is that I did a "cover" of a panel from the 80s comic book Spiderman Versus Wolverine for the Repaneled blog -- it's up over there today. I think the "cover" concept blogs are all pretty fun; there's a lot of them actually. Repaneled is on the newer side but has a lot of interesting work up already. UPDATE: Speaking of covers, friend-of-ComixTalk-for-life James Duncan has a cover of an Alpha Flight issue up at the Covered blog.
MILESTONES: It's the 7th anniversary of Richard Thompson's Cul De Sac. This comic is so good, it's kind of a shame it wasn't around for the last newspaper golden era of Calvin & Hobbes and The Far Side, it more than holds it own.
AWARDS: The Glyph Award nominees are out and nominated in the Best Comic Strip or Webcomic category are The K Chronicles by Keith Knight; Marty’s Diner by Dmitri Jackson; The Revolutionary Times by Brandon Howard and Sean Mack; Solomon Azua by Jake Ekiss; and World of Hurt by Jay Potts.
INTERVIEW: The Phoenix New Times interviews Matt Inman about his webcomic The Oatmeal. His first book, 5 Very Good Reasons to Punch A Dolphin In the Mouth, is coming out on March 5.
- The Daily Cross Hatch reviews Julia Wertz's Drinking At The Movies, and Comics Worth Reading links to a preview online of the book.
- Tangents reviews the looong running webcomic Megatokyo.
JUMP TO HYPE SPEED
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 17, 2011 - 10:53
I heard it was Warren Ellis' birthday this week - be sure to wish him a happy birthday and go read his excellent webcomic Freak Angels. Ellis also launched another tell me about your webcomic threads at his highly trafficed forum Whitechapel. I have often discovered excellent new work from those threads - worth checking out.
MAJOR MILESTONES: I'll second Fleen's writeup of Brad Guigar's 11th year in webcomics - the guy is the Paul Bunyan Cyborg of webcomics. And also it's 9 years of Unshelved so I'll also second Fleen's congrats there too. (And this has been your weekly "Catching up late with Fleen" episode!)
MINI MILESTONES: Steve Hardoin's Billy Rabbit, a webcomic about a girl named Kiki and her sarcastic rabbit, reached 50 comics. The rabbit is always getting himself into trouble and Kiki is forced to bail him out, however, Kiki is more like her pet than she would ever admit.
iWEBCOMICS: Morten F. Thomsen, the CEO of digital comics platform Oxicomics, writes that his company is about to "release the first truly HTML5 based comics reading application for iOS (iPhone, iPad, iTouch), Android, Symbian and desktop/laptop computers (Windows, Linux, OS/X) – no Flash – only open, standard web technologies – while still creating an immersive reading experience that readers have grown accustomed to." He also adds that publishers will be able to use the self-service platform to publish comics in ways that no other digital comics platform offers. Choose between “Complete” issues and “Ongoing” issues (e.g. unfinished, webcomics model with regular page postings), and offer the purchased comics for true ownership (free from DRM) – not just for rent like all other digital comics applications out there today. In addition, since the application is 100% HTML, there are no AppStore approval processes (or censorship) – all comics can be distributed as they were intended by the creator – without having to conform to antiquated moral codes.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 17, 2011 - 10:36
I've gotten a couple of pings from the very polite person working for YouCast: the Social Media Company about a press release for a webcomic prequel to an upcoming television show. Webcomic prequels and sequels to television shows and movies are almost a genre now. Maybe award shows need to start a new category for these kinds of comics.
So it's a ways off -- June 2011 -- but Steven Spielberg has a new television series called Falling Skies that will be on TNT (hey - better distribution than Current TV amIrightKeith?). The webcomic is written by Paul Tobin and illustrated by Juan Ferreyra and will bridge the gap between the 12-page Falling Skies comic released at New York Comic Con. Also - colored by Andy Dalhouse and lettered by "font majeur" (like that?) and webcomic creator NATE PIEKOS.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 14, 2011 - 11:00
Well happy Valentines Day! In the spirit of the day, check out the Comics Reporter round up of its readers' five favorite kisses from comics. In Xaviar X. Xerexes news, I am running again - I have this foolhardy notion that running a marathon this year is a life-affirming, motivational goal. I have a long way to go to get ready for it.
- The Comics Reporter has an interview with Darryl Cunningham, who has posted several well-received journalistic comics in the last year.
- Ben Morse has an interview with Sean T. Collins on his webcomic Destructor.
- Tim Brouk interviews Ben Hatke of Zita The Space Girl.
- The TGT podcast has an audio interview with Chris Watkins of the romantic/family/cross-cultural comic Odori Park.
BUSINESS: Brian Hibbs has his annual analysis of the Bookscan data for graphic novels. A lot of data -- very interesting to get a sense of how bookstores did with comics last year.
WORTH GETTING OFF OF THE COUCH: Nick Bertozzi is signing his new book on Lewis and Clark at Big Planet Comics in Bethesda on February 26th from 4-6 pm, and he's accompanied by Jason Little, whose book Motel Art Improvement Service was one of my favorites of 2010. (h/t ComicsDC)
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 10, 2011 - 10:46
iWEBCOMICS: The Beat has a long interview with Dave Bowen, Diamond's Director of Digital Distribution, about Diamond Digital, their in-store digital comics program. Perhaps I'm missing something but I don't see the consumer value in going to a physical location in order to buy digital goods. UPDATE: I think Todd Allen does a great job of pointing out the flaws in this Diamond strategy.
ENDINGS: Gingerbread Houses by Alexander Danner and Edward J. Grug III reached the end of its two-year serialization today, with the publication of the series’ final installment. A 97-page self-contained graphic novel, Gingerbread Houses retells the classic fairy tale of Hansel and Gretel, looking beyond the story’s original end to examine how the children’s ordeal changed them, as well as their relationship to their parents. The story can be read in its entirety online. In addition, three issues of Gingerbread Houses are now available as print minis, and can be purchased via PictureStoryTheater.com. The fourth and final mini will be released in the coming weeks.
BEGINNINGS: I've been reading the webcomic Let's Be Friends Again which has great art and generally pokes fun at superheroes and comic books. The creators, Curt Franklin and Chris Haley, recently announced they were making the comic their day job AND a partnership with hip-hop nerdist “Adam WarRock” (aka Eugene Ahn). The new venture LBDA! Inc looks like an attempt to cross-pollinate their fanbases -- Adam WarRock updates with new music throughout the week and Let’s Be Friends Again updates with a new comic three times weekly.
MARKETING: I get press releases all the time. It's funny. They have a particular style -- which must have been suited to newspapers because they sure aren't geared to writing on the web. Anyhow, marketing is marketing and mostly it's a no harm done, might help kind of thing. But ultimately what hooks you into reading a comic? The comic, right? Anyhow, I got a press release from Bruce Robinson for a webcomic he has called Bow Wows and Meows with the headline: "Super Bowl 'Doritos' Pug to be Featured in a New Comic Strip Endorsed by'Beetle Bailey' Cartoonist." I guess it's a decent gimmick but really until the actual comics with the pug are up on the site, I think it's kind of a waste of time. Also while I have no doubt one could make fun of the Doritos commercial without permission, this press release is getting awfully close to suggesting an agreement or endorsement between Doritos and Robinson of which there's no actual sign that there is one.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 9, 2011 - 10:58
Hey! Christopher Baldwin's Spacetrawler book is now available! It looks great. I hope you're already reading this entertaining science fiction story on the web. I wasn't sure how it would work when Baldwin started, but he's managed to incorporate a lot of his past themese with relationships, motivations, and morality into what is a really fun, rollicking adventure story.
- Brigid Alverson interviews Michael Kandalaft, creator of That Monkey Tune.
- The Daily Cartoonist posts a 6 part video interview that the site Sketchaholic did with Lynn Johnston, creator of For Better or Worse.
MAILBAG: Jonathan Murdock writes, "Hello just promoting my webcomic Dungeon Hordes." Okay - consider it promoted! :)
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 8, 2011 - 11:51
CALL FOR GUEST BLOGGERS! Ever wanted to jump up on stage and tell the audience something on your mind? I'm putting out an open call for guest bloggers again. Typically I feature guest bloggers for a week -- where you get a chance to write about comics for the AMAZING audience at ComixTALK. It's both a way to mix up the views and content here but also let's me have a little more time to work on other projects without ComixTALK crawling to a near halt. If you're interested shoot me a gmail or tweet me at xerexes. Thanks!
- Sequential Tart interviews Faith Erin Hicks who is working on her 3rd graphic novel, Friends With Boys.
- Jen Vaughn has a nice interview with James Kochalka with lots of pictures up at the Center for Cartoon Studies Blog.
- That Cover Girl blog interviews Colleen AF Venable who designs the graphic novel covers at publisher First Second.
- On the most recent episode of the podcast The Ink Panthers, Alex Robinson and Mike Dawson interview Julia Wertz.
- The Examiner interviews Katie Sekelsky of Magpie Luck.
- John Allison offers up an explanation of how he cleans up pencils in Photoshop.
- Dean Haspiel shows his sketched thumbnails for a Perry White story, featuring Wildcat in SUPERMAN 80-PAGE GIANT 2011.
MORE LINKS THAN JIMMY DEAN: Kelly Cooper wrote up all of the webcomics recommended by the Arisia 2011 panel "The Best Webcomics You're Not Reading."