Saturday, 22 January 2022

SHOUT it out loud! The77 issue Seven is coming!

The Kickstarter for the next issue of popular indie comic The77 is now live! The 64 page full colour comic anthology features an array of talent including Paul Goodenough, Ian Stopforth, Dave Heeley, Andrw Sawyers, Hal Laren, Brendon Wright, Jo Heeley, Rupert Jones and more. 

PLUS there'll be a brand new Sgt.Shouty funventure from me, which will now have two pages!

There are various incentives for different pledge levels including original black and white sketches that I'll be drawing to order. You can choose from Sgt.Shouty, Doctor Plank, or King Bumface! 

The cover features the new strip, Black Dog Lane, by Ben McCloud and Kit Bodhi, inspired by Richard Corben's album sleeve art for Bat Out of Hell. The cover was revealed just a day before the news of Meat Loaf's passing.  

You can back The77 issue 7 by following this link...

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/the77comic/the-77-seven 


 

Thursday, 20 January 2022

Latest auction ends this Sunday. Original art for COMBAT COLIN, DOCTOR WHO MAGAZINE and BRICKMAN up for bids

 

A reminder that my current art auction ends this Sunday evening, 23rd January!

Up for bids are one of the very earliest Combat Colin strips (the 9th one published) that originally appeared in Marvel's Action Force No.13 in 1987, a Daft Dimension strip from Doctor Who Magazine, and an all new Brickman drawing along with the complete Brickman saga in Brickman Begins! and Brickman Returns!

All bids appreciated. You'll find the listings and more info about each item here:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/graphite47/m.html?item=203554298786

Good luck!


Tuesday, 18 January 2022

Merchandise site using my artwork without permission

 A company called Nyvane are selling mugs on their website featuring my artwork and characters. They're advertising Brickman, Combat Colin, and Seven Ages of Fan mug designs with promotiuonal images taken from the Redbubble account I closed yesterday.

These items are counterfeit. Nyvane do not have my permission to use my Intellectual Property.

As I've never had any dealings with Nyvane they don't even have my art files to use. I seriously doubt anyone would even receive the mugs if they bought them from that site. Each mug was made to order exclusively through Redbubble, and I know exactly how few sold, so it's not even as though Nyvane could buy a bulk order to resell. Seems like a scam to me!

Nyvane claim to be making the items in the USA, but the company is based in Viet Nam! 

If you need further evidence, the negative reviews on TrustPilot say it all:

https://uk.trustpilot.com/review/nyvane.com

Please do not support piracy! 



Monday, 17 January 2022

No More Merch

I've just closed my Redbubble online store.

As you may recall, I set it up three years ago to sell various merchandise. Combat Colin T-shirts and mugs, Derek the Troll coasters, Brickman badges, etc. Redbubble assured me I'd still own the I.P. so all was good.


It seemed ideal. I just upload the art and Redbubble handle the rest; they deal with orders, manufacture the goods and dispatch them to customers. Prices were a bit high (Redbubble set the prices) but these were Print On Demand so were very rare items. The downside was that Redbubble take a huge percentage, but that seemed fair considering they were doing all the work after I'd uploaded the art. 


Sales have been pitiful though. "You should do merchandise" people told me. I did, but most of those people didn't buy any. Do you know how much I earned from it over the past 12 months? £5.19.


Okay... I thought I'd leave it a while longer... but tonight, I received notification from Redbubble that they'd removed my 'Seven Ages of Fan' artwork because it was already "related to a brand". Bloody cheek! That artwork was something I created in 1998 (originally published in the UKCAC booklet that year), and, like all my work on Redbubble, was an original creation and my Intellectual Property.

That was the last straw. I've deactivated my account.

My thanks to the few of you who did buy mugs, T-shirts, stickers, caps, etc from my store. Hang onto them. They're now very rare! 

 

Update: I've just found a website of a U.S. company that has completely ripped off my mug designs without my permission. I'm not sure how they've acquired my art to use as I only uploaded those designs to Redbubble. If you see any websites manufacting Brickman, Derek the Troll, and Combat Colin merchandise it is 100% illegal. Action will be taken against them.

 

Original artwork for sale, plus the complete Brickman package!

I've put a few new items on eBay for an auction this week. Firstly there's a very early Combat Colin strip that features the very first appearance of the Combat Plane (and is also the second appearance of Colin's sidekick, Semi-Automatic Steve.) It was published in Action Force No.13, way back in 1987, and this is the original art for that episode...

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/203793509558

Secondly, there's one of my Daft Dimension strips from 2017. This one features the alternate Earth 10th Doctor plus Rose and a cameo by her parents. It appeared in Doctor Who Magazine No.518 and you can bid on my original artwork here...

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/203793500719

Lastly, something a bit different. Unread excellent-condition editions of Brickman Begins! (2005) and Brickman Returns! (2015) - therefore the complete Brickman saga - PLUS a brand new A5 size piece of Brickman original artwork all as one lot. You can bid on this package here...

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/203793488681

Bidding ends next Sunday (23rd January). Good luck! 


Saturday, 15 January 2022

How Do You View?

How this blog is displayed on a phone.

I'm sometimes told that the images on my blog are "too small to read".  I found this baffling because I make sure the scans are large, at least as big as they were published in print in some cases, so that they look fine on screen. 

Then it occured to me that perhaps some people don't know how to enlarge images? Surely not, as that's one of the first things we discover about the Internet, right? You tap or click on a blog image and it'll be shown its full size. Sometimes there's an option to enlarge it even more.  

However... an increasing number of people today are only accessing the Internet via their phones, so of course the images are small. Tapping on them will enlarge them but then you'd have to move the image around to read each panel of a comics page.

When I started this blog I assumed everyone would be reading it from a desktop or laptop, so they'd see it as intended. Even an iPad or any other tablet will show the blog as it should be (below) but if you're viewing it on a phone (see pic at the top of this article) you'll see it differently (and won't see any of the sidebar listings for the archive or other links).

Viewed on an iPad.

It's a difficult one really. I appreciate mobile devices are what most people use now, so I wouldn't expect you to buy a desktop PC just to read comics blogs. The alternative would be for me to show each panel as a separate image that filled your phone screen, but that'd be too time consuming for me to set up and would be annoying for readers who are accessing the blog on a desktop or laptop.

For the most part I only tend to show preview panels of upcoming work anyway, so that suits all devices. It's only when I show full pages that makes it inconvenient for people looking at it on a phone.

Just curious though; how do you view this blog? Phone, laptop, tablet, smart TV, or desktop?  Please drop a comment below to give me an idea. Thanks.

 

Thursday, 13 January 2022

Pete and his Pimple in Buster - in March 1988!

Buster issue dated 26th March 1988 featured a half page Pete and his Pimple strip I was commissioned to do, to promote Oink! comic, which makes this my first Buster strip.  Not only did they let a then-relative-newcomer like me loose in the pages of this fine, well established comic but I even got to co-star Buster himself in the story, - although as you can see, it didn't end well for him!

As most comic readers of the time know, the promotion sadly had little effect on Oink's falling sales (no thanks to WH Smith top-shelving it well away from other comics) and Oink! actually merged into Buster later that same year, bringing Pete and his Pimple into the comic on a regular basis.

Interestingly, although I was able to do a full on gross strip for the advert above, editor Allen Cummings didn't want any pimple pus bursts seen in the regular Pete and his Pimple strip when it became a fixture in Buster. I think it took the edge off the strip but I completely agreed with Allen's point as such gross humour was fine for Oink! but not suited to the tone of Buster

As it turned out, Pete only had a run of six months or so in Buster. Whilst Oink's older readers had voted it one of their favourites, Buster's younger audience didn't really go for it. (Well, what seven year old can relate to zits?)

On the other hand, Tom Thug, which had also transferred from Oink, shot up the Buster popularity charts, as you can see from this letter I received from the editor. I guess kids of all ages always like to see the bully become the butt of the jokes, and long may it be so.