Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Comiket April 2013

April 20th was Comiket day!

I like Comiket, and I've been selling my stuff there for a few years now. Each one has been a bit different. I remember taking a break from cons after putting the O Men on hiatus, and I went to a Comiket upstairs at the ICA, which looked great. I think people had trouble carrying their boxes up the stairs though, as there was no lift! Then I signed up for a table at the next one at the ICA, which was downstairs and it was very dark and claustrophobic! I launched Spandex there (when I printed up about 100 copies!) and my little colourful flyers seemed very popular! I remember having to leave early to go to my Japanese teacher's amateur soprano concert. Then they moved the Comikets to Liverpool Street and it was good - but one show was way too busy - and the one after got a bit quieter (altho mainly because it was spread into different rooms). 

This time they moved to the new Central Saint Martin's College in King's Cross - it used to be near Tottenham Court Road. 

I tend to feel more relaxed about Comikets, as they are just one-day fairs and they are local to me, but in the weeks leading up to it, I felt like I should have been preparing stuff (flyers, making mini-comics etc) but was too busy drawing other things! Eventually, the day came along, and I got up at 7am and prepped as much as possible, but there still wasn't enough time. (In the end, it turned out I had plenty of stuff, so didn't need to prepare anything!). 

So we got to King's Cross at 10 and I got a bit confused because of the building works. After staring at a map for 10 minutes, we decided to follow Google Maps, but apparently the College isn't set up properly there yet - as we discovered! So the iphone was sending me south, towards Chancery Lane, and after 15 minutes I was like 'Hmm, nah, it's supposed to be in King's Cross!' So we headed back and again looked at the aforementioned map we'd looked at before (nope still couldn't see it), then I decided to check out the little map on the Comiket website (which I probably should have done first of all) and headed in the right direction. I bumped into Sean Azzopardi and someone else, and we all headed north, not convinced we were going the right way. Eventually we thought we'd found it, and suddenly about 30 indie people turned the corner too - so finally, success!

Because of our troubles finding the venue, I was worried the con would be dead, but no - what a great turn-out. It was really busy all day. I was in the back room with a lot of the big publishers plus the Drawing Parade. Jonathan Cape were there (one of the women was knitting all day, which I found a bit odd), and Nobrow (I was expecting them to be loads of bespectacled arty men, but no, they were two quiet young ladies). Zoom, Philippa Rice and Timothy Winchester were also in there, plus Self Made Hero and Myriad. I think I had the best banners lol.

This Comiket reminded me a lot of Thought Bubble, partly because a lot of the same creators were there, and partly because the other room had a Thought Bubble atmostphere. The other room had a lot more tables in it and was a bit brighter - i think i'd prefer to be in there next time. 

So I can't really talk much about the comics that were there, as it's all the usual suspects really!

I didn't buy much, as I have a lot of the stuff I want - and I'm generally trying to cut down - I prefer digital these days. I did pick up Windrush 2 (which has some nice Spandex in-jokes), a couple of things from Philippa Rice, a couple of things from Rob Jackson (i've seen him around for years but never tried his comics - about time!) and something from Lizz Lunney (see Rob Jackson).

The audience at Comikets is fantastic. Very open-minded, chatty, inquisitive, lovely. You kind of get the same range of punters at every show - the people who are quiet, the people who talk a bit too much, the people who want to start their own comics but don't know how - plus of course you get the friends you see each time (some of whom have their own stalls). 

So all in all, a really nice show - a bit tiring. The only drawback? Our neighbours - naming no names (not Nobrow). Boy, did they stink. From the moment I arrived, I caught a heavy B.O. whiff, and it's true - at least two of them really did smell. Grown men - what's wrong with them? I just hope punters didn't think it was me!

Monday, April 22, 2013

​​ ​My poor blog

My poor blog! I've neglected it so much! Partly because we have Google Mail at work now, so my personal passwords for the Blog don't seem to work on my work computer (not that I would write blog stuff while I'm at work, obviously...), and partly because I've been very busy. But I'm determined to use this blog site! I see my different websites as having different uses - the Spandex website contains EVERYTHING, the Facebook Spandex page contains the best highlights (because I think putting too much on Facebook can piss people off), and Twitter contains stuff when I remember i've got a Twitter account.
Plus, as  lovely as Wei's Gulk pic is (below), it's been at the top of this blog for a while and it's a bit eye-popping and needs to go down the page a bit!
So I've decided to - for now - do a quick update on where I am with things, but also - going forward - to update more regularly with something interesting...

So anyway, where am I with things now?

Well, I'm beavering away with the Spandex Special! It's going to be 48 pages (41 pages of story) and it's going slowly but surely. I'd like to get it done for October - usually I'd aim for November/Thought Bubble, but I found that a November release date tends to make a comic get ignored - people seem to wind down a bit for Christmas! I'll write more about the Spandex Special here soon.

I'm also working on The O Men Book Three - tidying up a page per day (annoyingly, there's a lot of tidying up that needs doing - just cleaning up marks on the art.) No editing or new art at all, just polishing it up.
I've got a couple of side projects on the go - I'm contributing to Too Much Sex & Violence issue 5, and I'm doing a two-page story for Geeked Magazine.

And then we have 'Class'. This is where the blog might get interesting ("Finally!" I hear you cry)! Class is going to be my next project after Spandex and The O Men - so we're looking at 2015 at the earliest! But that's the fun part. Between now and then, I can plan and plan and plan and plan. I don't have all of the story yet - nowhere near - but I will have it all by 2015, I think. I'm being inspired all the time with new ideas, so it's fun.
I'm not going to reveal everything about Class, because part of the storytelling is a spoiler, but I'll reveal little bits and pieces.
I've put a rough sketch on here. The main cast should consist of 16 people, but at the moment I have only got 12 - the others will pop into my head, I'm sure.
Stay tuned!

(Oh, I also might use this site to get things off my chest. I don't really like seeing other people do that on Facebook, so I rarely have an FB moan - but I might do it here from time.