The digital revolution has made comic book publishing a thing of the past. See and learn how virtual computer technology will revolutionize this field and allow every artist to have their fifteen minutes of fame.

Sunday, July 23, 2006


Roboyo is a boy who can call a variety of robots to come to his aid whenever he feels like he is in danger. “This is Roboyo, I’m in trouble. Send a robot on the double!”

Roboyo can talk his way out of most any situation. Unfortunately his mouth runs him into way more trouble than his brains can get him out of. Roboyo’s family has a secret. They have been deeply involved in espionage for generations. Roboyo’s grizzled grandfather, The Cougar, is the current leader of the Ultra Secret Service. The spy gene has skipped a generation with Roboyo’s father to The Cougar’s chagrin. The Cougar has put all his hopes on Roboyo to keep the family legacy alive.

The only good thing about hard times is that it can't last forever. Over the last couple of weeks the studio has hit rock bottom. We lost most of our contracts, had to layoff most of our talent, the bank account is almost completely drained and the tax man is knocking. I had to question myself on the viability of this studio. Fortunately my cousin, a successful businessman, assured me that if people are calling you to do work then you ARE a viable business. I re-examined the business and though there is some restucturing that must be done I can see a clearer direction for us. With a little luck and no more major hickups we should be fine.


DC Comics Superhero Stamps Coming

The United States Postal Service has announced that one of its 2006 2006 Commemorative Stamps sets will be superheroes. What follows is the release and an image of the stamps can be found here.

This is the first stamp pane (20 stamps) honoring comic book super heroes to be issued by the Postal Service.

Half of the stamps on the DC Comics Super Heroes pane show portraits of characters; the others show covers of individual comic books devoted to their exploits. Beginning with the classic covers, a separate paragraph below briefly comments on each stamp.

Ever since Superman was introduced to readers in 1938, super heroes have been nearly synonymous with the comic book medium. Their fantastic adventures provide an escape from the everyday while simultaneously encouraging readers to feel that individuals can make a difference.

Comic books aren't simply "kid stuff" - adults have always been among their readers, and the form has attracted its share of serious artists and writers. And super heroes have responded to social and political issues from the start, fighting corporate greed and political corruption during the Depression, for example, and then becoming patriotic defenders of national interests during World War II.


Friday, July 14, 2006

A Scanner Darkly: An Animated Illusion

Marisa Materna chats with director Richard Linklater on the production of A Scanner Darkly, which utilizes interpolated rotoscoping to bring live-action footage into an animated dream world.
Truth or fiction? Are we being watched? Who is in control? Are my friends really my friends? Is this an illusion?
These are just some of themes in the Philip K. Dick adaptation A Scanner Darkly hitting theaters on July 7, 2006. Starring Keanu Reeves, Winona Ryder, Robert Downey Jr., Woody Harrelson and Rory Cochrane, this film, inspired by Dick’s real life drug addiction and his experiences, is a dark and caustic journey into the lives of five friends who have been seduced by a drug referred to as Substance D or “Death.”

A Scanner Darkly was written and directed by Richard Linklater who is taking a departure from recent mainstream films such as School of Rock and Bad News Bears back to a more surreal project using the same animation technology he used in his 2001 film Waking Life, called interpolated rotoscoping developed by fellow Austenite and pal, Bob Sabiston.
"The technology really triggered something in me when I first saw the software at work. And I thought it would work well for this type of film. But making this movie was a lot of work, I think we spent more than 500 hours just for one minute of animation,” says Linklater.

LEARN MORE - By Marisa Materna

How to Create Comics from Script to Print

All images © 2006 Danny Fingeroth, Mike Manley and TwoMorrows Publishing. Thief of Time and all related materials are © 2006 by Danny Fingeroth and Mike Manley. All rights reserved.This is an excerpt from How to Create Comics from Script to Print, an upcoming TwoMorrows Publishing book by Danny Fingeroth and Mike Manley.
Danny and Mike take turns showing readers the steps involved in creating and publishing comics. Through sample drawing and writing lessons, invaluable information includes how Mike, who has penciled and inked many top comics for Marvel and DC, breaks a script into pages and panels via thumbnail sketches.
Danny, longtime Marvel writer and editor on Spider-Man gives pointers on creating conflict and developing characters. The book will debut at Comic-Con International later this month.
My Process, The Script to Print by Mike Manley
Step 1: The Thumbnail
OK, this is where it all begins for me visually — the most important step of the job and the most creative. As I read Danny’s plot, ideas start to bubble up, and visually explode in my mind like popcorn in the microwave. I start to frantically draw down these images, scene fragments, right away. My goal is to get my first impressions down fast. Once I have these thumbnails down, I start to refine them.
Sometimes I get clear ideas right away of what I want to draw, or how I want to play a scene or lay out a page. Other times I get these visual bits or panels in little “chunks” and then have to work to link them together. Through years of doing so many comics and storyboards I find that my first impressions are almost always the best. Sometimes I refine ideas, only to go back to the original.
This part of the job is liquid. Ideas or panels come and go. In fact, one should always be open to a new idea that may improve the story at any time, right up until the job is out the door to the printer.
LEARN MORE - By Danny Fingeroth and Mike Manley

Saturday, July 08, 2006


I'm back from spending two months in Europe (well, just London, France, and Italy) as an attempt to try to get back into drawing. What a place to pick for it - I was so greedy to look at things that it took a lot of effort to sit still in one place and actually draw something (damn you, Europe, why you so pretty??!).
Nevertheless, here's the first half of the trip. It starts out pretty terrible but as the weather warmed and settled so did my patience. Pic heavy, o' course.
*deep breath* LLLLLOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUVRE!!!!! The marble courts are amaaaazing (Tom Hanks passed by them briefly in the-movie-that-will-not-be-named). Vast, marbley spaces between statues... beautifully set-up. Uhm, pictures soon! But you can't really get a sense of the space just from those.
Not inspired from the Moulin, but from the tonnes of metal shacks selling turn-of-the-century journals, prints, porn, novels, and other miscellaneous junk along the Seine.




Family Man is hosted on Webcomics Nation, and is open to all.
I'm a young woman named Dylan Meconis. I live in Portland, OR, and recently graduated from Wesleyan University with a plucky little degree in lit, history, and philosophy. I'm a cartoonist, writer, and illustrator, but I'm in denial and will probably head for a career in books.
Family Man stands completely on its own, and present a considerably less cartoony world. My intention was to do other projects before this one, since it's always nice to branch out as far as humanly possible from your freshman effort, but sometimes you don't get to choose.
Pencils are done with mechanical pencils that I steal from my housemates and grey gum erasers that my cats find fascinating, inks with Faber-Castell Pitt Artist pens (mostly the brush tip, with some help from the technical tips for lettering and details), all done on smooth Bristol paper from Strathmore. Then I scan using my trusty old Epson Perfection onto a G4 Power Mac, and do the shading in Photoshop with the help of a bitty little Wacom graphire tablet.
I am working on another piece, but it's one which won't be well-suited to regular updating, and thus is on the Q.T. until further notice. I also occasionally do new strips for Oscar & Annie, a silly blow-off project I do when in desperate need of personal amusement, and I'm involved in commissioned comics projects as well.
Bite Me is currently making its way towards a print volume, like a salmon slowly fighting its way upstream. It's still available for subscriber reading at Girlamatic until I sign a contract. Check its website or my journal for any breaking news on seeing my work in print.
I've done a fair amount of research, although not exhaustive. Some of my sources include:
Grace, Talent, and Merit : Poor Students, Clerical Careers, and Professional Ideology in Eighteenth-Century Germany, bv Anthony J. La Vopa
A History of the University in Europe:Volume 2, Universities in Early Modern Europe (1500-1800), edited by Hilda de Ridder-Symoens
Germany in the eighteenth century:The social background of the literary revival, by Walter Horace Bruford
Of Wolves and Men, by Barry Lopez
Visual research for costuming, architecture, objects and the like come from wherever I can find information, through Internet databases, film, and the occasional print resource. Given the narrowness of my topic (and the desire to occasionally see sunlight), a lot of guesswork is involved.

Thursday, July 06, 2006


It was Mark Hanerfeld’s tribute to Kubert’s Tor in Alter Ego #10 way back in 1969 that first tipped me to St. John comics. Kubert I knew, of course, but who was this caveman Hanerfeld raved about? I eventually acquired 1,000,000 Years Ago #1(the unwieldy real title of Tor) and came to know he spoke the truth. Over time, various St. John books drifted in and out of my collection. While they never attained the consistent quality across the board that E.C. had, there was a determined streak of originality running through the line. I began seeking out information about the company and was surprised by much of what I learned. Particularly regarding Archer St. John himself. The man and the company are virtually inseparable and I found I couldn’t tell the story of one without also telling about the other. My research led me down paths, and a few cul de sacs, I never expected.
Certain aspects of the St. John story may be familiar and have been told in detail elsewhere. Those facts I give only cursory attention. Whenever feasible, I tried to direct the reader to the other sources.
This article isn’t intended to be the last word on the St. John story, but hopefully it is a starting point.
Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, made their comic book premiere in Laurel and Hardy #1 in March 1949. This series was drawn by Reuben Timmons (nee Timinsky), who was yet another St. John artist best known for his animation work, with a career extending from Betty Boop to A Charlie Brown Christmas. This short lived title ran only 3 issues in this incarnation.
TO THE COMICS - by Ken Quattro
all artwork and images © St. John Publishing or respective copyright holders.

Digital Funnies: Comics Preservation by Jonathan Barli

Welcome to Digital Funnies, dedicated to preserving the history of this most neglected of art forms and reintroducing it to scholars and new readers alike. While several well-known titles such as Krazy Kat, Gasoline Alley, and Peanuts are being given their proper due in published form, there is still much of the rich history of comics and cartooning that will more than likely never see print again and worse, fade away with time.
Understandably, a publisher would be hesitant to take on the huge financial risk of publishing an obscure title or cartoonist, but digital reproduction offers no risk at all and allows for a terrific means of restoring, preserving, and making available again the vast amounts of material that have been unseen and unappreciated for far too long.
Quality is the priority, and sacrifices will not be made in this field to cut corners. Although the image files are jpegs for easy viewing, they originate as uncompressed (and thus much larger) print-quality TIFF files. If an intrepid publisher would ever want to take to print any of the material held within, it will all be readily available.
Your support is what will keep Digital Funnies alive. For the time being, only material in the public domain will be undertaken, but who knows what lies on the horizon - there are many exciting projects coming up so please check back, as new ones will be posted as they are completed. Any comments, suggestions and words of encouragement are welcome. Enjoy!

Monday, July 03, 2006


Bill Mudron is a 27-year old slacker currently residing in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His pants are large, and his contempt for stupid people looms even larger. He eats Beefaroni, drinks Coke, and will likely be dead in 3 years. Heap large amount sof cash upon his tender soul.



Jessica Hickman 's DEAD PLAYGROUND

Welcome to, home of my artwork and other projects.
Don't miss the comic VISITING DAY.
© (copyright) Jessica Hickman

Sunday, July 02, 2006


For the right price, Jackson Lau will track down what you lost...find those responsible...and get it back, by any means necessary.
I started out reading superhero comics, fascinated by the action and color. But during and after college, my interest waned. I became disillusioned by the repetitiousness of the books, the neverending resurrections, the overblown dialogue, the reused characters. They were like soap operas. And I felt the medium wasn't being used to its full potential.
For a while, I felt that the Japanese really had a leg up on these books because of their higher level of consistency, creative action scenes and crazy panel layouts. But mostly because the creative team saw the books all the way through to the end. There was an end!
Superhero books just kept on going... languishing in their comfort zones, and I was highly critical of that fact.
Not anymore. Why? I've come to realize that American comics are not like Japanese comics. And probably shouldn't be. They have a place in the industry and a reason for existing. Sure, the industry may seem as if it's stuck in time and repetitious, but it keeps young readers from being lost, helping to engender the next generation of comic book readers.
But more than that, American comics have accomplished something unique that Japanese comics have not. They've created icons.
Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, SpiderMan, the X-Men. Although sometimes the writing and the art sucks, these characters are part of the American fabric, now. And not only that, they've become akin to Gods.
Gods?? Sure. Think about it. Remember those BORING Greek myths you read in high school? Well, if you looked between the lines, they weren't that boring, and were, in fact, superhero stories. Those gods weren't very much like the current "perfect" god(s) existing today. Those Greek gods were flawed, made mistakes, influenced humans to do as they wished, were petty, vindictive... and basically human. But with powers.
Our costumed friends are similar. Maybe sometime... in a few centuries... Some guy will collect all the Marvel books into a single volume... much like the Iliad or the Odyssey... and... not understanding that they were created by hundreds or thousands of different artists or writers.... form a collection of myths called The X-Men... written by... one man named Marvel.
It could happen. :)


Drawing comes easy to some people while many others seem to have no talent at all. This collection of watercolors and line drawings is a wonderful example of how beautiuful the world is seen through the eyes of an artist, Buding, whose effortless simplicity shines through.

Saturday, July 01, 2006


Once, the gods of the Greeks were feared and respected. Once, they held the power to topple empires and shape the hearts of men. Once, merely looking upon the true face of a god could reduce a mortal to a cinder.
Those days are past.
Belief in the mythology of old has waned, and the pantheons have scattered and broken. The immortals that remain have adapted, attempting to assimilate themselves into modern society. Though they are in decline, they remain gods. They live and love and play their games, and none are the wiser. After all, what has a god to fear?
This is the story of a nymph, her roommates, the god who courts her, and a progressively more bizarre supporting cast. It is a tale of life, love, and fate at its worst. And, most of all, it is an online testimony to how the creative process can make really bizarre ideas seem like a good thing, providing the creator hasn't had enough sleep and may, in fact, get through an entire script before realizing they have a word processor open. I would advise that new readers start at the beginning, as this is a continuing story. SoI is also rated PG-13 for some adult content, including language, mild violence, and adult situations. If you're feeling charitable, feel free to support my evil empire by voting for me in the comicgenesis Super 100, thus attracting new vic-- readers.


Broken Glass began with a role-playing game - Marvel Heroes, of all things. The game ended, but my character, The Angel of Misery, wouldn't go away, and that spawned this story. Dr. Fisher is the character of another player, who became so interwoven with Misery that he couldn't be seperate and still allow the story of Misery to be told. Fisher is based on that original character, with the permission of his old player.
Now, rather ironically, the Broken Glass world has spawned an RPG of its own. The plot of the current and ongoing game weaves around and through the plot as it unwinds in the comic. Many of the events are experienced by the PCs slightly before they happen online, or are run as parallel scenarios. The PCs interact with NPCs from the comic, as well as new characters who do not and will never appear online.
The RPG is a trip through a broken looking glass, into a mirror world populated by the Angel of Misery and all his demons, Dr. Fisher, Grace Fallon - and the Lualhati family, the protagonists of the game.