Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Brisbane Comics - Early 2013

Brisbane Comics Report  - The First Bit of 2013 

May 2013

Here i go again, banging on about the local indie comics scene.

If you type 'Brisbane Comics' into google you will probably get a comic store (and they are certainly nice comic stores),  but not much information about what is out there in the locally published sense.  So posts like this are designed to highlight what is available and  not as a qualitative assessment.  As a Brisbane based comic creator i reserve the right to shamelessly promote my own work amongst the rest.

Supanova Gold Coast provided impetus for a host of local comics creators to release new work. Here is what came out;

Phatsville #18

Covers by Cam-El (above) and Brett Weekes (below)

Featuring work by Giles, J-stew, Benjamin Sea, Dean Rankine, Harry Gold, Cam-el, Ross Radiation, Corey Warren, Glenno, Jase Harper, Ej Filka Zyla, Mel Stringer, Mark Osberg, Shaun Craike, Ryan Vella and Brett Weekes.

64 Pages, Black and White A5 size
Into their eleventh year and still going strong, the Phatsville boys have once again  gathered a varied group of underground and alternative cartoonists amongst their pages.  The old Keeyock tales featuring the sometimes true adventures of John and Giles gets a new take with some great work from ex-Brisbanite Jase Harper and also Dean Rankine.  Despicable Man, Heroic Heroes and Rodney Rant all make return appearances, amongst other short stories and illustrations plus the usual fine work from founding Phats-Fathers Giles, J-Stew and Ben Sea.


 Giants #2 by John Stewart

28 pages Black & White (roughly American size)
J-Stew's latest Giants comic arrives hot on the heels of issue 1 and continues the story set in a post apocalyptic world where giants are on top of the food chain and humanity scrambles for power.  Part two of a five part series, fleshes out the world of Giants in John's usual brutal and jagged style.

Sounds Great! The Despicable Man collection volume 3 by Cam-El

A5  B&W 56 pages
The further collections of Cam's web comic series.  The gag strips in Sounds Great! plumb the usual depths in truly Des-picable style.  In this issue we meet new housemate Tess, plus a biting Barnyard Frolics backup feature, Des cosplay gallery and more one panel gags than you can shake a fist in disgust at.

The Adventures of Gravity Boy by Brett Weekes

A5 24 pages colour

The first issue of this series is a quiet little gem about a man who may or may not have control over the forces of gravity, the hand puppet who haunts him and the giant killer robot at the end of the street.

Heroic Heroes #12 by Will Kelly

36 Page, B&W (American Comic Size)
The Heroic Heroes return with a flourish of tentacle-like arms, existential angst and relationship melodrama.  Part one of a five part series introduces new characters and a new storyline.  Alt comics Superheroes in the vein of Flaming Carrot and Madman.

Zenyaku by Shaun Craike and Susan Torre 

 24 Pages A5 B&W
Busy draping, isometric backgrounds and eastern influenced faces coagulate into a consistent singular vision in Craike and Torre's martial arts/ family drama tale.





Turbo Supermax #2 by Ryan Vella

Lot 18 Homebush Rd, Walkerston, QLD, 4751

A5 B&W 29 Pages

Dig the Thing inspired cover by Vella here, anyone who celebrates marginal 80's Marvel titles is okay in my book, but that's just me.  Supermax #2 delivers on the hyper violence of #1 with polished ease.  One of Queensland comics' best figure drawers tearing figures apart limb from bloody limb.

Backyard Tanks by Patrick Kelly

A6 B&W 28 pages

Debut mini comic from young Pat Kelly is a tin can tale of war and woe. Technical data, statistical analysis and engineering cutaways compliment the madcap vibe of this mini comic nicely.  Ground floor stuff from an obvious talent.



Space Pyrates by Caitlin Major and Matthew K Hoddy

This whirling dervish of a sci-fi pastiche has been collected under one cover for the first time thanks to a massive crowd funding campaign.  A consistent and polished work by two prolific young cartoonists.

So that's the first few months of 2013 in Brisbane comics and i'm sure there will be plenty more stuff coming leading up to Supanova Brisbane in November.  Also coming up are two events, Southside Tea Room is having it's very first Zine Fair on June 2nd, from 3pm and ZICS (zine and indie comic symposium) is on from 30th August to 1st September.  So there are plenty of reasons to get more publications out there.

Once again, apologies to anyone i've missed.  If you have released a comic in Brisbane in the last few months i'd love to know, e-mail me at Toiletcitycomics@gmail.com.  I try to check out the following places to source Brisbane comics.
Rocking Horse Records
Ace Comics
Comics Etc

One of the great supporters of Brisbane comics is Milkshadow Books and they have LOTS of other great stuff too.

PulpFiction Comics in Adelaide stock a small selection of the above titles.

And there will soon be Heroic Heroes Comics Available to buy at the following stores in Melbourne,
Sticky Institute
Minotaur Books
All Star Comics

This blog is intended for promoting local work, for reviews and further insight i suggest,
Australian Comics Journal
Non Canonical Podcast
Comic Spot Podcast

Will Kelly

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

A guide to Brisbane comics in 2012

A guide to Brisbane Comics in 2012

There isn't a lot of information regarding the work being done by comic creators in balmy Brisbane, but by no means is there nothing going on in the scene.  In the following posts i'll try and describe to you a comprehensive list of the works in the Brisbane small press scene during 2012.  If i've missed anything let me know.


Phatsville Comix #17
Phatsville, the brainchild of Giles Kilham, John Stewart, Ben Constantine, Glenn Manders and Tom Scarlett, is now ten years old and at it's best.  Ten years makes them some kind of institution in the Brisbane comics scene, they're not big self promoters and they don't go around telling people they're Brisbane's best comic, but in their own way they've become just that.  A reliably interesting anthology of ideas from Brisbane's warped cartoonists, submissions are welcome and if you're published you get a copy of the comic you appear in.  This one has a beauty of a cover by Ben C and the return of Simon Pitter; Pants Shitter and Ernie Andrews
 You can buy it here

Groovy Gravy #14
I don't know if Bjelke-Peterson was still in charge when Groovy Gravy issue 1 came out. it's been a long time.  In it's hey-day the Groovy Gravy anthology had legends Mike Mungus, Brett Williams and Mr J involved and was a melting pot of 90's Brisbane comics talent.  Mr J remains and it's still helmed by Brad Daniels and now features a whole new crew of Brisbane up and comers.  Maybe it's lost it's grunge era, share house vibe that was characteristic of Brett Williams off the wall style but the grand daddy of Brissy comics is still full of funny stuff and still a place for Brisbane comics people to publish their work.

Ashcan #'s 4-7
The new kids on the block when it comes to anthology comics in Brisbane are enthusiastic and prolific.  These guys are really earnest in getting themselves out there and establishing a community of Brisbane comics creators with regular meet ups and social networking.  They often try to team up writers and artists to varying effect, definitely worth keeping an eye on these cats.

More Brisbane Comics

Best of Bad Teeth Comics
by Bad Teeth
Bad Teeth's crowd funded behemoth is a thing of beauty.  Candy wrapper colours, and repetitive design somehow go hand in hand with weirdo photos and oddball comic strips to create an idiosyncratic vision.

Holiday USA
by G-man and J-Stew
These mates from Phatsville, take us on their holiday to San diego Comic con and we cant help but be charmed by these symbiotic battlers from Brisbane as they confront the weird that is America.  Well executed, well written, these guys are at their best here.

The Incredible Love
by Brett Weekes
The radioactive colours on this baby, coupled with big black silhouetted dong on the title character shouldn't make you, but you do end up falling in love with this book.  Old Brett Weekes' first comic book in a long while is part love letter, part hulk parody.  Warning: Brett has now grown a beard.

Giants#1(of 5)
by J-Stew
If German expressionist cinema did Game of Thrones as a comic book it would look a lot like this vicious mag.  J-Stew's long awaited post apocalyptic tale about Giants and a man named Jack  is a great book and just the start of what looks like will be an epic adventure. 

Plump Oyster #9
by Ben (sea) Constantine
The demented genius of this book must have legions of fans by now, so i won't carry on.  Ben's stuff just keeps getting better and better and if you haven't tried Plump Oyster i highly recommend it!

Space Pyrates #1-5
Only just discovered this one at Brisbane Supanova.  It's a webcomic but i've included it because they've also printed five issues of it as real honest to gosh comic books.  Having read the first one, i'm keen to see more.  Like It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia by way of Monkey Island 3.

Heroic Heroes Special Issue 3
By Will Kelly
Of course i was going to put my work out there in this list.  Heroic Heroes Special #3 features the very first appearance of The Heroic Heroes: West End.  Also has the Seven Year shit and Stocking Licker's Mum stories.

Heroic Heroes Compendium
This is the collection of all of the Heroic Heroes mini comics that make one epic storyline.

Heroic Heroes Adventures
And this one collects the short stories from Phatsville #9-15

Turbo Supermax #1
by Ryan Vella

This homicidal superhero comic from Ryan Vella isn't necessarily a Brisbane comic, but we'll take it. (he's up near Mackay apparently)  Turbo Supermax, a well drawn hate letter to Spider-man, is a sprawling 52 page cacophany of invention, violence, drug use and weird sex. 

by Jackie Ryan
This fumetti has been going on for a while now and has a really interesting premise and some nicely designed covers.  

The Soldier Legacy
by Paul Mason
The Soldier Legacy is a popular book put out by Black House Comics about an Aussie soldier superhero.  Nicely drawn and written, very much in the style of the American Mainstream.

Bubble Babes
by Mel Stringer
This one is a colouring-in book, but the creator of Girlie Pains is one of Brisbane's best comix people and it would be a crime not to include her work in any list of Brisbane books.

Despicable Man 1 &2
by Cam-El
Depraved comic strip by Cam, wrong on so many levels there are over 100 pages of this humorous and depraved strip.

Funny Web Comic and Blow The Cartridge
by Cameron Davis
Cameron kindly pointed out that he has been working hard on his own comics for years.  And yes he has, and indeed his comics are funny!  Cameron has been contributing to Groovy Gravy for some time now.  You can keep an eye on his web comics here and here.

No new titles from Shaun Craike but he's been working hard on a story for the new Blackguard.

Eddie Campbell lives around these parts too and i would encourage anyone who hasn't to try some of his work.

So that's 2012 in Brisbane comics in no particular order and no preference.  Apologies to mainstream comics guys who come from Brisbane, just trying to spotlight alternative and independant stuff here.

Nothing critical from me either, this is about promoting the work of fellow comics crew.  If you're looking for something more critical check out The Australian Comics Journal , or start your own comics review site, or post in the comments section.

If i've missed your work it's through ignorance or stupidity, not because i don't rate your comic.  So let me know if i've missed you.  Or do your own Brisbane comics summary!    

Thanks for reading and go and support your local comics community.

Where to buy Brisbane comics
Rocking Horse Records
Comics Etc
Ace Comics
Milk Shadow Books

P.S A bunch of Brisbane comics just arrived at Pulp Fiction Comics in Adelaide, so check it out South Australians.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

So i'm updating my latest work to webcomicsnation, let's see if that pans out..
You can navigate through everything at the front page here-


here are some direct links to my latest stories




Wednesday, March 16, 2011

This is the first page of an 8 pager i finished a couple of weeks ago for Groovy Gravy. In this story we meet Stocking Licker's Mum. Groovy Gravy has been around for yonks, and when i say yonks i mean, MC Hammer was big when it started yonks. But Groovy Gravy has been an inspiration in the Brisbane Small Press Comics scene giving young dudes a go at seeing their stuff in print. Last issue i did two pages of auto bio stuff about quitting smoking and making comics, i wanted to do a Heroic Heroes for Brad though and this is what came up.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Christmas Tree Decorations
Paper toys are pretty new to me, and these were my first go at it. A Wedding gift for our first anniversary, that's my beautiful wife on the right, i'm the daggy sideburns guy on the left.

There's some interesting blogs out there on papertoys...


Evolution of a page(s) Heroic Heroes #8
Well this is a massive step, it's been 5 days since the last post, and it usually takes even longer than that to hit the BLANK PAGE. So, after pottering around for a couple of hours, doing anything to not draw, i finally sat down.

The Paper -
I have been crippled by bad paper in the last few years. I use a hunt 102 dip pen, and finding it's equal in paper has made me go soft in the head many times. What i've found is the steel point of my pen often bites the paper causing me to constantly clean my nib, that or the paper's too thin and the ink bleeds or makes the paper dimple.
So thank the holy heavens i found this Bristol board at Eckersley's a month ago. You hear cartoonists talk about how they use Bristol Board all the time and i gotta tell ya this stuff is like papery mana from the gods. Clean Lines, no breakage and silky smooth. Drawing lines on this stuff is like sleeping in a womb. So like Starship said, Nothing's Gonna Stop us Now!

I've fucked around with plenty of different sizes for the originals. I started off drawing at the same size it was printed (1:1), then i started drawing on an A3 page. The problem with A3 is you need either an A3 scanner or you have to scan bits and pieces in an A4 scanner and then put it back together. I was pretty shit at photoshop when i started so i had to get a mate to scan my stuff in, and after awhile i just went back to 1:1. Looking back at the originals for the last seven issues is like looking at the collected work of an autistic preschooler, with all the odd sizes and bits of cut out board. And with that said, i've now chosen a brand new ratio thanks to the bristol board which is what you see above, i think it's 1:1.2 or something silly. I did it so i could get as much out of a sheet of Bristol Board as i could without doing it at 1:1.

Fuck i'm crapping on a bit. Next - The Pencils

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Heroic Heroes #8
Evolution of a Page

So i plotted out and pencilled the first 32 pages of issue 8 a couple of years ago and never got around to plotting the last 30 odd pages. So two weeks ago i finally got the story finished and thought it might be a good opportunity to show what goes on behind the creation of an underground self published mini comic.

Well surely someone must be interested in this world wide web.

It does come up a lot when you talk to comic crew:- do you do full script? Layouts? etc.

Well here we go, I'll update this as i work through it and you can see the evolution of a page.

This will end up being a two page spread, so 39 and 40 will be read next to each other in landscape format. As you can see Mr Scary has just been told that the Octopus army has been decimated, (no spoilers here, because we know the octopus army was wiped out at the start of issue 7) and his plans for world domination have been somewhat hindered. I try to have the octopus guys dialogue very conversational and polite. The layouts are very basic, i approach each page with a 3 panel grid that i can fuck about with when i get to pencils. Panel composition isn't a big issue here either, but definitely i like to think about where the characters are standing and space with regards to placing the balloons, and the future panning of the 'camera'.

As far as drawing of the characters go, i usually go for some short hand indicator of which character is speaking, so the octopus guy has the legs, and Mr scary just looks like a pacman ghost really.

As i work through these pages i'll try to give some kind of idea how long it's taken (always too long), and show pencils, lettering then inking and photo-shopping.

As far as issue 8 goes i've got about 30 pages inked, or pencilled and layed out. The last 30 odd are all like this, and the race is on to have it finished by the time Supanova Brisbane comes by.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Heroic Heroes is online

Read old issues of Heroic Heroes online @ http://www.webcomicsnation.com/toiletcitycomics/heroicheroes/series.php

i'm collecting the entire saga, so i can have a 'web presence' and so more people can read it all.