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Nicholas Gurewitch

COMIX TALK FOR MONDAY MONDAY MONDAY

I'm in kind of a world wide mixed wrestling NASCAR mood this morning (already thrown a couple chairs down the hallway) but let's see if comics soothes the savage beast.

PEOPLE THAT LIKE PEOPLE: Laura Hudson has an interview with Nick Gurewitch of  Perry Bible Fellowship fame and Michael Fiffe over at The Beat has a really good profile on artist/creator Kyle Baker.

AWARDS: Time to send in nominations for next year's EISNERS.  Seriously wouldn't it be great to have lots of worthy nominations from webcomics for every Eisner category?  

CONVENTION 'VENTION WHAT'S YOUR INTENTION: The Beat reports that the Stumptown Comics convention in Portland, Oregon will "curate" the list of exhibitors due to the huge demand for tables.

FREE MONEY: The Drawn blog with this timely reminder for aspiring comics-making students -- don't forget that the deadline for the Jay Kennedy Scholarship is December 15th. More details at the National Cartoonists Society Foundation.

DEAD TREES: Fleen flags the forthcoming book edition of Evan Dahm's Order of Tales Book 3: The Tower of Smoke.  Pre-ordering now in effect.

MILESTONE: The comedy webcomic Troops of Doom reaches 300 episodes this week. TOD uses GI Joe, Star Wars, Lego and other toys for props. The webcomic is running a contest where readers can have an a recurring character in the comic named after them.  

TOOLS: I think I saw Spike link to this on Twitter this morning - a great website for working with colors together: Color Scheme Designer.

BLOGGITY-BLOG BLOG: Covered has a post just like the one I put up last week - links to like-minded "cover song" comics blogs. Another blog in this vein that is often quite good is the Comic Social Club.

Guest Comicking: The Daily Cross Hatch with another "guest comic" - this one from Erich Fletschinger.  I kind of like the idea of a blog about comics having "guest comics" -- anyone interested in doing something for ComixTalk?  Maybe I'll try to create a recurring thing next year...

Comix Talk for Thursday, March 4, 2010

Mike Krahulik and Jerry Holkins

INTERVIEWS: Time's Techland Blog is the next step on the Penny Arcade book tourSean Collins interviews Nick Gurewitch about some short comics he did for Marvel.  Marvel?  Yeah Marvel!  He has Hulk and Wolverine comics in an upcoming  book.  CrunchGear interviews Drew and Natalie Dee of Toothpaste for Dinner fame.  And David Harper interviews Brock Heasley, co-creator of Monsterplex, the most recent winner of the Zuda contest.  Heasley's other webcomic is the superheroes in a retirement home comedy -- Super Fogeys.  (h/t to Paperless Comics which does a far most exhaustive job than I of tracking down webcomic-related interviews and reviews around the web)

REVIEW: Christopher Irving at GraphicNYC gives Raina Telgemeier's Smile a great review.

LEGAL BEAGLE: Long article at CBR on the Incarnate/Bleach copying scandal and the line on plagerism and homage/inspiration in general.  If you're interested in the subject, worth a read.

JUSTIFY MY HYPE Channeling Randy Jackson for a minute: Dude, Rosenburg you just killed it tonight! That thing is hawt!  Seriously - this animated panel of Goats is great fun and doing it as an animated gif is practically like employing medieval age technology by the standards of Internet time.

AROUND DEM BLOGS: Hope Larson reminds you that she is not Bryan Lee O'Malley's secretaryAlexis Farjado announced that his new Kid Beowulf book The Song of Rowland is off to the printers.

New Book coming out

I found this while surfing today. I thought maybe you guys might want to check it out…
Nevin Martell has a book coming out called Looking for Calvin and Hobbes: The Unconventional Story of Bill Watterson and his Revolutionary Comic Strip. Here’s the abridged version of the summary that I found on The Comics Curmudgeon:

So that's what he sounds like...

I was interviewed by Tom Racine for his Tall Tale Radio program a while back, and forgot to post the link. Click here to find out everything you ever wanted to know about my job.

I also turn up again in a newer broadcast, at the tail end of the Nick Gurewitch/Monsters of Webcomics feature. Shaenon's on that one, too, so it's obviously worth a listen.

Cartoon Art Museum Call for Webcomics

The Cartoon Art Museum of San Francisco (www.cartoonart.org) is organizing "Monsters of Webcomics," a showcase of cutting-edge webcomics work. The show's ten spotlight artists have already been selected. However, the museum also wants to include a virtual gallery of as many other webcomics as possible. If you're interested in having your art included in the virtual gallery, email curator Andrew Farago at gallery@cartoonart.org.

Feel free to spread this information around the webcomics community. The museum wants a wide range of comics included in the show.

This Day in ComixTalk: June 19th

This Day in ComixTALK:

2008
Chuck Whelon posted the cover art for his new edition of the first collection of Pewfell Perfingles comics.  He also posted a great page from that bookNeil Cohn noted the 30th anniversary of Jim Davis' Garfield and covered some of the webcomic experimentalism incorporating that comicBrad Guigar reported back from exhibiting at Wizard World Philadelphia.  Kate Beaton?  Before she became famous for historical comicking, she posted this take on the Anthony-Liz storyline from For Better or For Worse.

And the nominees for that year's Online Comics category at the Harveys included Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Jeff Kinney, EZ Street, Robert Tinnell and Mark Wheatley, Penny Arcade, Jerry Holkins and Mike Krahulik, Perry Bible Fellowship, Nicholas Gurewitch and Surreal Adventures of Edgar Allan Poo, Dwight L. Macpherson, Thomas Boatwright and Thomas Mauer.

2007
I was in the midst of spinning off Comixpedia.org and rebranding this site as ComixTALK.  While it all hasn't worked out to "bigger and better" it has worked well enough for me.  (Never did activate the so-called umbrella site "Comixmedia")

Todd Allen was covering the DC webcomics plans; another Platinum story was in the news and FLEEN speculated on the webcomic future for Elfquest creators Wendy and Richard Pini.

2006
Back when we did "Summer of Guest Bloggers" -- we had Barry Gregory (01 Comics) and Clay Gardner (Wirepop) on tap for this week.  Clay wrote a post on "the hidden style of manga".  And Zach Lewis hyped Jack of All Blades -- the "most popular adventure comic featuring a doppleganger, a penguin, and a horrid swordfighter".

2005
June 2005 was our "webcomics in print" issue.  Ben Towles wrote about his experiences self-publishing a print collection of his webcomic TowniesEric Burns wrote about some of the webcomics that had jumped to print and mused about what would be the future role of print in webcomics.  Meanwhile in Kelly Cooper's MoCCA report we have early photographic evidence of Gary "Magnum P.I." Tyrrell.

2004
Cartoonist Hard (aka Clay) who used to blog pretty often, wrote about various comics publications and objecting to the Webcomics Examiner approach to webcomics.  It just reminds me of how overblown some of the discussions online became back then.  And the fact that for a long time Comixpedia/Talk was largely alone in trying to provide coverage of webcomics which often meant we got swept up in whatever the drama of the moment was.

2003
I linked to this article in the NYTimes about building an audience for your blog.  It's a bit like driving a mustang while looking back on the Model Ts.  How about this quote:

But Susan Mernit, a blogger in San Francisco, is actively trying to increase her readership from its current average of about 50 visitors a day. "I value hits highly," said Ms. Mernit, a consultant for nonprofit organizations and a former vice president for programming at America Online. "I'd like to see my traffic increase by 10 readers a month."

In Webcomics No One Can Hear You Scream

Thanks to Caleb Sevcik for this month's cover art!  Caleb is the first artist to do 2 covers for ComixTalk.  Here's more news for Tuesday:

CRAFT
From DRAWN! -- Dave Gibbons, artist on the Watchmen, uses Manga Studio to digitally draw the character Rorschach.

Erfworld artist Jamie Noguchi demonstrates some techniques in "digital painting".  Cool stuff!

INTERVIEWS
Part one and part two of Daily Cross Hatch's interview with PBF creator Nick Gurewitch.

BUSINESS
Over at Panel and Pixel, a thread asking what is the optimal update schedule and tips on how to market your webcomic.

Pop Syndicate has an article on the threat to brick and mortar stores from digital comics publishing.

Scott "Dilbert" Adams writes a blog post on how hyper-localism might "save" newspapers (not really - Adams is really advising people in newspapers to start  "hyper-local" community portals as a new business plan.  Not sure Adams is offering anything new to the already vigorous discussion on how a focus on local community is a newspaper's core function and it's potential future).  Not sure I would have linked to it except Scott Kurtz pops up in the comments chiding Adams for clinging to the newspaper model for Dilbert.  I think Kurtz missed it there - Adams only seems to be offering an idea to provoke discussion, something he does quite often on his blog.  I doubt Adams, personally is all that stressed about newspapers since Dilbert has already made it in the larger pop culture in a way very few comics ever do.  Even if newspapers disappear tomorrow, Dilbert will do as well or better than almost any comic out there.

TECHNOLOGY
Anyone tried out the iPhone app for comics called ComicZeal?  Thoughts?  While I'm thinking of small screens, here's a link to coverage of an SXSW panel covering comics on handhelds. (h/t Brigid who covers lots more handheld stories in this post)

JUSTIFY MY TOM's HYPE
Tom Spurgeon - the Comics Reporter - writes about the webcomics he is currently reading.

AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 BLOGS

FROM DRAWN! -- Justine Lai’s series of oil paintings depicting herself "in flagrante delicto" with each US president - NSFW

Another great link from DRAWN! - a video showing the evolution of the Batman logo.

Harvey Award Nominations Due This Week

Got a webcomic?  Harvey award nomination ballots are due before midnight, March 27th - you can download from HarveyAwards.org and email a completed ballot to harveyballots@hotmail.com.  They've got a "professional requirement" for participating in nominations but I can't find any specifics right now on their website other than this:

Nominations for the Harvey Awards are selected exclusively by creators - those who write, draw, ink, letter, color, design, edit or are otherwise involved in a creative capacity in the comics field. The Harvey Awards are the only industry awards both nominated and selected by the full body of comic book professionals.

The winners are going to be presented on October 10th, 2009 in Baltimore as part of the Baltimore Comic-Con.  This year, our Master of Cermonies will be Scott Kurtz of PvP.  Last year in the Best Online Comic category, Nicholas Gurewitch won for Perry Bible Fellowship.  Full press release after the jump:

DRAFT List of 100 Greatest Webcomics: Comedy and Drama

Last year I posted a couple times (Previous posts on this "research" project were here and here) about a possible article on "ComixTALK's 100 Greatest Webcomics" which would be something like the American Film Institute's list of the greatest movies of the last 100 years.

A recurring comment to the previous two posts was what is the criteria for this.  I'm always a little hesitant to give too much guidance when part of the point of asking this kind of thing out loud is to listen to the resulting discussion of what everyone else thinks the criteria should be.  For the AFI list judges picked films based on criteria such as Critical Recognition, Major Award Winner, Popularity Over Time, Historical Significance, and Cultural Impact.

That sounds about right to me.  We've got a round decade plus a year or two of webcomics to look at it.  Critical reception (both from peers and critics), and popularity are both relevant to thinking about the impact of a webcomic.  WCCA awards are somewhat indicative of what peers were impressed with in a given year and more recently awards like the Eisners and Ignatzs have recoginized webcomics.  Historical significance and cultural impact are a little harder to pin down but various "firsts" in webcomics are important and comics like Penny Arcade have had a much wider impact on popular culture than most comics do these days (put aside the legacy superheros of comics -- what other "new" comic, let alone webcomic, in the last decade has had a wide cultural impact?)

Another thing AFI did that might be useful here to help sort through the vast numbers of webcomics one could talk about is to also think about categories or genres of work.  Just as a simple matter of numbers if a webcomic isn't one of the best of a larger type of story -- or frankly, so startlingly unique it's hard to categorize -- then it's hard to imagine it's one of the 100 Greatest...

So to move things along I'm listing another "draft" of titles submitted by the crowds but this time I've tried to break them up into drama and comedy so as to help avoid complete apples to oranges comparisons.  In doing that I've realized (1) it's hard in many cases to decide; and (2) there are probably more comedic than drama on the list so far.  I think it would make sense to whittle down the two lists to 75 each so as the final list is no more than 3/4 of one type or the other.  Of course we could further do genre type lists but for now this was enough work on my part.

So -- your assignment (if you choose to play):

  1. Name the comic you're talking about (you're also welcome to nominate ones not on the list -- I KNOW there are many I haven't even thought about yet -- it takes time to review all of the corners of the web)
  2. Tell me where on one the two lists (comedy and drama) it should be (you could give a range of slots if you're not sure). (If you think I've got a drama on the comedy list or vice-versa let me know!  I'm not "done" - this is fairly dashed off still at this point)
  3. Tell me why!  Referencing awards, critics, historical achievements, strengths and weaknesses of the works are all really helpful!

The Webcomic Overlook #65: Thingpart

wcotitle

Humor is like a pizza. Every has a different idea about what’s great and what’s terrible, and no two people will ever come up with the same recipe.