Friday, 21 February 2020

Final whistle for Pup Parade?

The latest series of Pup Parade comes to a close in the next issue of The Beano (No.4024), which goes on sale Wednesday 26th February. 

It's not quite the end though, because there'll be a one-off episode in the comic in April. A previously unpublished story! 

I've really enjoyed doing Pup Parade again. This was my third series I think. I hope they'll be back for another full series one day. I've no time to miss them though because I'm busy working on the replacement strip and the first episode of that begins in Beano No.4025! Who does it feature? Well, it's a Beano character I've never drawn before. I'm not even sure he's had his own strip before... and you'll find out who it is soon! 

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Wednesday, 19 February 2020

Updates

I have a number of things I'm drawing at the moment but I can't reveal anything about them yet! Happy to be busy, but frustrating I can't show you any illustrations. 

One major job is for a company outside of comics, but it's still comics-style material.

I'm enjoying working on my new Beano strip, and should be able to reveal what that is soon.

I'm drawing two pages for a special. 

I'm drawing three extra pages for the Cor! Buster Easter Special

I'm doing a page for the new The 77 comic. 

...and amongst that I'll be fitting in my regular Daft Dimension strip for Doctor Who Magazine. And of course Combat Colin No.5 needs to be done at some point!

Had some personal problems that need to be sorted too, so for better or worse these are interesting times. In the meantime, my current auction ends this Sunday if you want some of my old artwork:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/graphite47/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_ipg=&_from=

Sunday, 16 February 2020

ORIGINAL ART FOR SALE!

I'm selling off some of my old original artwork! The items are...

A special Combat Colin / Robo-Capers strip that appeared in Transformers No.200 (1989).

An early Tom Thug page that also included the very first Pete and his Pimple strip! (Oink! 1986)

A two-page Team Toxic story featuring Butt-Face. (Toxic, 2019).


A Daft Dimension strip featuring the Odd-Job Daleks! (Doctor Who Magazine, 2018). 

Bidding runs until next Sunday evening (23rd February). Art will of course be packaged safely for posting. 

Here are the listings...
https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/graphite47/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_ipg=&_from=

Good luck and thanks in advance to everyone who bids. 


Friday, 14 February 2020

In next week's BEANO...

Here's an advance peek at my next Pup Parade strip. This time the spotlight is on Sniffy! What's he up to? Find out when you buy the Beano No.4023 on Wednesday 19th February! 

(In case you hadn't guessed, the large areas at the top and bottom right will be where the dialogue balloons will go. The composition will look more balanced then.) 

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Thursday, 13 February 2020

Returning to Enniskillen

Another convention to announce, and this one is likely to be the first I'll be going to this year. I'll be flying over to Northern Ireland again for the Enniskillen Comic Fest on Friday 1st/ Saturday 2nd May 2020. (The main event is on Saturday but they're planning something for Friday evening.)

Well organised by Paul Trimble and his team, Enniskillen Comic Fest is always a friendly event and totally focused on comics, not film, TV, or wrestlers! 

You can read more about it on the Down the Tubes site here:
https://downthetubes.net/?p=114929

...and keep up with developments at the festival's Facebook page here:
https://www.facebook.com/EnniskillenComicFest/

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Tuesday, 11 February 2020

That time I inked Jack Kirby

Back in 1997 Chrissie Harper asked me to do a page for the Jack Kirby Quarterly, a magazine dedicated to the work of the King. I was sent an A3 photocopy of a sketch that Jack Kirby had done years earlier. A stat of his pencils showing Captain America and his nemesis the Red Skull. My brief was to ink the image but change the Red Skull into my character Brickman, yet retaining the Kirby style.

It was a very enjoyable job to do. As I only had a photocopy to ink I used my Lightbox to do the job, inking it on good quality Bristol board. I was happy with the result...

When the image was published in Jack Kirby Quarterly No.11 (1997) Chrissie had added some tone to enhance it. I liked the effect! 

This is the issue it's in, if you're ever searching the back issue boxes at conventions...

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Sunday, 9 February 2020

The final TOM THUG strip (1996)

I created Tom Thug for Oink! comic and he appeared from the preview issue in 1986, and throughout most of the 68 issue run of the comic, plus annuals and specials. See here for more info on his creation:
https://lewstringercomics.blogspot.com/2014/02/the-origin-of-tom-thug.html

When Oink! merged into Buster in 1988, Tom Thug was one of the fortunate few characters to hop over. He became a very popular character in Buster, proving that showing bullies getting their comeuppance every week is always something kids like to see. 

Today I'm showing the final Tom Thug strip I did. It appeared in Buster dated 9th July 1996, meaning that the character had a 10 year run. This wasn't quite the end though, as (due to dreaded cuts in the comic's budget) reprints of Tom's earlier stories began to appear from the following issue, and continued until the very last issue of Buster at the end of 1999.

I didn't know this would be the last one until after I'd submitted the script, so there's no conclusive ending (which I would have preferred). However, as I knew it was Tom's final outing when I drew it, I added a few things for my own amusement:

The lady wearing the headscarf in panel 4 was based on my mum, and that's me in the foreground (as I looked then). The juggler is Pete (from my old strip Pete and his Pimple) finally cured and spot-free. 

The black dog in panel 8 is based on my dog who was 11 years old at the time. (She lived to be 18. Still much missed.)

The number next to my signature beside the last panel is the total number of Tom Thug strips I'd done, including that one; 440 in all! 

Will Tom Thug ever return? No idea, but I gave him a cameo in last year's Cor!! Buster Humour Special and he's also part of a crowd scene in a few panels in the forthcoming Cor!! Buster Easter Special. I'd like to think he could be revived one day in a strip of his own, or at least as part of a reprint in Rebellion ever do a collection of old Buster strips. Time will tell. 
Cover of the Buster that contained the final new Tom Thug strip.

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