Tuesday, 17 September 2019

In print this week...

I've contributed to three publications that are out this week. First up is Beano No.4003, on sale Wednesday 18th September, which features the third of my new series of Pup Parade mini-strips. This week the spotlight is on Sniffy! 

Then on Thursday 19th September, Doctor Who Magazine No.543 goes on sale, which contains a Daft Dimension strip featuring my daft spin on the 4th Doctor's regeneration!

That same day also sees Comic Scene No.8 on sale in WH Smith and comic shops. Amongst the articles and strips you'll find one by me about TV Comic, the classic weekly that ran from the 1950s to the 1980s. 

Three publications for three different markets, all out this week. Which will you buy? Take your pick or collect 'em all! 

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Back from Omagh

From left going up and back again:
Lew Stringer, Laura Howell, Staz Johnson, Ian Edgington, Becky Cornwell,
Dan Cornwell, Hunt Emerson, John Royle, Anya Morozova, Phil Vaughan.
Back home, tired but happy after a very enjoyable weekend in Northern Ireland for the Omagh Comic Fest at Strule Arts Centre. My thanks to the ever-enthusiastic Paul Trimble and his hard working team for organising it and for their fantastic hospitality. It was a really upbeat, friendly event and a steady stream of attendees meant that we were busy all day. 

Thanks also to Andy Boal for hosting the Beano panel. Laura Howell, Hunt Emerson and myself enjoyed it, and we were also pleased with the keen audience who asked some great questions. 

As ever, it was great to catch up with old friends and make new acquaintances too, including Hunt Emerson, Laura Howell, Davy Francis, John Royle, Staz Johnson, Dan and Becky Cornwell, Ian Edgington, Anya Morozova, Phil Vaughan, Katie O'Kane, Alan Nolan, David MacDonald and more. 

Paul and his team made my first visit to Omagh a very pleasant stay and we were all made to feel very welcome. I hope the festival returns in the future!

Here are a few photos taken over the weekend... 
About to take off from Birmingham International.

Flying over England.
Table set up and ready.

Stop me and buy one!

Everyone setting up their tables.

2000AD artist Dan Cornwell.

Artist Staz Johnson.

Sketch cover commission.

Minnie the Minx artist Laura Howell.

Great to see old OINK! pal big Davy Francis again!

Artist Anya Morozova from Russia. A new rising star of UK comics!

Laura Howell and event organiser Paul Trimble.

Fantastic artist Katie O'Kane.

Relaxing in the bar after a busy festival!



Laura Howell:

Hunt Emerson:

Dan Cornwell:

John Royle:

Ian Edgington:

Anya Morozova:

Katie O'Kane:

Staz Johnson:

Philip Vaughan:

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Pup Parade preview

The second of my new series of Pup Parade is in today's Beano. As it's a mini-strip of just three or four panels, each week will focus on just one or two pups rather than all nine of them. This week, Blotty gets the spotlight! 

Beano No.4002, in shops now! 

Sunday, 8 September 2019

Next event: OMAGH COMIC FEST (September 14th)

Thanks to Olly MacNamee and the High Vis Street Art Festival for a good convention yesterday. The comicon area at the Zellig building was small but perfectly formed, and well lit by natural light. Nice and busy, with a pleasant atmosphere throughout the day. A good event that I hope will continue to thrive in years to come! 

Next up... I'll be flying over to Northern Ireland for the Omagh Comic Fest which takes place on Saturday 14th September. I'm looking forward to seeing friends old and new over the Irish Sea and meeting up with pals in the comics industry. Hope to see some of you there! 

Friday, 6 September 2019

Comics! Comics! Comics! at HIGH VIS tomorrow!

It's been four years since I got back into self-publishing and I've produced seven comics since then. I'll be bringing them all (plus the 2005 Brickman Begins! book published by Active Images) to the High Vis Street Culture Festival this Saturday, 7th September at the Custard Factory, Digbeth, Birmingham. 

Yes, that includes Brickman Returns which I thought I'd sold out of but I've found a handful of copies this week. The last few left! 

I'll also be doing sketches on request so come along to meet me and a bunch of other comics folk. Admission is free! 

Wednesday, 4 September 2019

The Bash Street Dogs are back today!

My new series of Pup Parade mini-strips begins inside the Beano today! They're also on the cover topline above the logo, so I'm pleased with that! 

This is the first time I've been in the Beano in almost a year and it's great to be back. The new run of Pup Parade is my third series featuring the characters. I don't know how long it'll last but I'm working on the ones for November at the moment. I hope you enjoy them! Let me know your thoughts by posting a comment below.

Beano No.4001, price £2.75. On sale now! 
Main cover art by Nigel Parkinson.

Tuesday, 3 September 2019

Derek the Troll coasters!

Another new item of merchandise on my Redbubble store.... Derek the Troll coasters! The stinky-but-good troll from Warlock, White Dwarf, and Goof! now has his own coaster set. 

Printed on demand. Available to buy exclusively from this link and nowhere else:

Monday, 2 September 2019

40 Years of Fun!

As I've been attending comic cons for 40 years (!) I thought I'd do a quick compilation of some photos from over the years to show my appreciation of some of the great friends I've met in this mad business we call comic. And yes, I know some of you weren't even born when I started going to conventions. :D 

Sorry if you're not in any of the pics I've found but you're all my pals and it's a pleasure to know ya! I've met some of the most genuine, compassionate, wise, and funny people in this business and I've never regretted making it my career choice. Here's to more conventions to come!

Sunday, 1 September 2019

ComiCon 1979... 40 years on

Jim Steranko and Mike Conroy at Comicon 79.
IT WAS 40 YEARS AGO TODAY, 1st Sept 1979... myself, Nigel Lawrance, Doctor Baz Samways and the late Dave Bird travelled to the Metropole Hotel at the NEC, Birmingham, for Comicon 1979! The very first comics con I attended! The star guest from the USA was Jim Steranko, one of the most creative, and coolest, guys in comics, and the first comics pro I ever met. (He signed my copy of The Illustrated Harlan Ellison which he'd drawn a chapter of). 

Although my ambitions to work in comics were stirring, I had no idea if I'd achieve it. Steranko told me to stick at it, so I did. I've lost count of the cons I've attended since (initially as a fan, then invited as a guest since 1984) but that first one still has a special place in my memories. Seems so long ago now, as indeed it was.

Thanks to Richard Burton for the use of his photo of Steranko and Mike Conroy at the Eagle Awards. The following two images are scans of the ads for the convention. £3.50 for a two day ticket! Daft as it sounds that was a lot in 1979, but for the career it led to... and all the friends I've met through such events... worth every penny a million times over.
When I returned home I set to work writing a review of the event for my fanzine After Image. Here's the result. I cringe at the stories of boozy parties now but I was a naive 20 year old at the time. You'll note that in those days there was an all-night cinema show so that fans who couldn't afford rooms could sleep in the cinema! (Or try to get to sleep anyway. Practically impossible as you'll see from the article.) 

Note the fan art by Adrian Salmon at the end of the piece. Another artist who did well and moved into professional work a few years later. 

I didn't own a camera back then but the memories have stayed fresh in my mind. Great, carefree times!