Wednesday 31 May 2017

Work in progress: Combat Colin

Here's a sneak peek at a section of the cover to Combat Colin No.1. As you can see, it's far from finished so the comic will be ready when it's ready, hopefully to launch at Macc-Pow! on 1st July. 

Most of my time is taken up with mainstream comics work but I'm fitting in work on the Combat Colin comic when I can. As previously mentioned, issue one will have 40 pages, containing all the Combat Colin strips from Action Force from 30 years ago. (Issue No.2 onwards will then reprint the Combat Colin strips from The Transformers.)

I'll keep you all notified of the first issue's progress so make sure to bookmark this blog for all the latest news.  

Tuesday 30 May 2017

It's Daft Dimension week!

My complimentary copy of the latest Doctor Who Magazine arrived today! It's another great issue packed with previews of episodes 8 to 11 of the current series, interviews, features, and of course comic strips including another Daft Dimension from me.

Doctor Who Magazine No.513 arrives in shops this Thursday, 1st June, and you'll have a choice of two covers. Which one will you go for?

Now I need to crack on with ideas for the next Daft Dimension. Back to the drawing board!

Sunday 28 May 2017

Farewell to Ivy and the Pups

Here's a preview of my strips coming up in next week's Beano. Unfortunately these will be my last contributions to the comic for the time being as Pup Parade and Ivy the Terrible are both being dropped to make way for new strips, new artists. Such is the life of a freelancer and nothing lasts forever. 
I still have work on Toxic, Epic, and Doctor Who Magazine though, and hopefully perhaps I'll be back in the Beano later in the year. It also gives me more time to focus on my own projects and private commissions. My thanks to those of you who followed and supported my Beano strips. Don't miss the last episodes this coming Wednesday, 31st May!

Thursday 25 May 2017

Working on the classics

I've just sent off my first page for The Dandy Annual 2019, which features Keyhole Kate. (Yes, we work way in advance.) It's always a privilege to script and draw such a long-established character that dates right back to The Dandy No.1 in 1937. It's kind of a strange feeling too, illustrating a strip with such a legacy that millions of kids from over the past 80 years have been aware of.

On a personal level, I get a kick out of it because Keyhole Kate was my maternal grandmother's favourite comic strip. I never knew my grandma, who died years before I was born, but my mum often mentioned it. I don't know how grandma would have been aware of Keyhole Kate, but she was a regular reader of Thomson's text-story weekly Red Letter so perhaps she bought a Dandy occasionally too. 

Anyway, back to the present. I won't show you anything of the 2019 annual for a long time yet, but at the top of this post is a panel from one of the Keyhole Kate pages I did for The Dandy Annual 2018, to be published this July/August. 80 years on and still peeking through keyholes! Other strips I've done for this annual are Postman Prat and Kid Cops. You can pre-order the book here:

Tuesday 23 May 2017

Ivy the Terrible - superhero!

No, that doesn't mean Ivy's a terrible superhero. It means Ivy the Terrible becomes a superhero in the latest Beano! Then again, maybe she's not really cut out for it after all. See what happens in Beano No.3886, on sale Wednesday 24th May!

That issue also features another Pup Parade by me too. What's gotten into Sniffy? The only way to find out is to buy the Beano! 

Saturday 20 May 2017

Who would vote for Butt-Face?

Sometimes comic strips work out with strange synchronicity. Before Theresa May announced her snap election, I'd already written a two-part Team Toxic story where the people inexplicably vote for Butt-Face as their leader. Part one will appear in Toxic No.289 this coming Wednesday, 24th May, with part two out on June 14th. As the general election is on June 8th I couldn't have timed it better if I'd tried!

Friday 19 May 2017

These characters stink!

The Bin Twins are two of the stinkiest, filthiest characters of Hygiene High, one of the strips I draw for D.C. Thomson's Epic every month. Imagine the Swots and Blots without the Swots and you'll get an idea of what the series is like. Written by Niall Murray and drawn by me, the latest episode of Hygiene High can be seen in Epic No.132, on sale this coming Wednesday, 24th May! 

Convention Listings (Updated)

It's been great meeting readers (and fellow guests) at the comics events I've attended this year. I'm doing quite a few up and down the country so here's an updated list. Hope to see you at some of these shows!

Here's an updated list of the comics conventions I'll be at this year. Hopefully there's one near where you live, or that you'll feel like travelling to. Come along and meet the guests!

25th March 2017
The Millenium Gallery,

9th April 2017
Staffordshire University,
Leek Road,
Stoke On Trent,

5th and 6th May 2017
N. Ireland

10th June 2017
Hilton Metropole,

24th June 2017
Birmingham City University

1st July 2017
Town Hall,
SK10 1EA

28th to 30th July 2017
More info soon.

5th/6th August 2017
More info soon.

9th September 2017
Holiday Inn,

23rd September 2017
More info soon.

1st October 2017
Sports Connexion,
Leamington Road,
Ryton On Dunsmore,
CV8 3FL.

13th to 15th October 2017

22nd October 2017
Venue to be announced soon.

10th to 12th November 2017
More info soon.

25th/26th November 2017

Thursday 18 May 2017

The OTHER Rock Solid

Scanned from my original art.
As most of you know, one of my first published comic strip series was Rock Solid, Space Hero that appeared in the first five issues of Swiftsure, published by Harrier Comics in 1985. What you may not know is that a few years later in 1992 I revived the character for an unpublished comics newspaper supplement called Stars that Joe Matthews was hoping to get into regional newspapers. 

For this version of Rock Solid (see above) I completely redesigned the character in looks and personality. The original Rock was a callous narcissist, but the revised version was just a bumbling fool, more akin to Combat Colin in personality.

Anyway, some projects never take off and this was one of them but I thought you might like to see the one strip I did of the redesigned Rock Solid.

As for the original Rock Solid, you can read his complete 15 page adventure as a back up in Derek the Troll No.1, available by post from me at my online shop:

Wednesday 17 May 2017

A couple of preview panels...

...from this week's Beano strips Pup Parade and Ivy the Terrible that I did. At least I think these are the episodes that'll be in this week's issue. I won't have chance to go into town to buy a copy for myself until tomorrow. Too busy drawing my pages for an upcoming issue of Epic

Never Be Without A Beano! Issue No.3885 is in the shops now! Only £2.50.

Monday 15 May 2017

Combat Report

This is just a progress update on the Combat Colin comic I'll be publishing. Well, actually there hasn't been much progress since the last update as I'm currently busy on mainstream work for Toxic, Epic, Doctor Who Magazine, and Dandy Annual 2019

What I can tell you is that issue 1 will have 40 pages (full cover covers and 36 black and white interior pages) and will reprint all of the Combat Colin strips from Action Force from 1987/88. I still have the cover to draw, the editorial page to write/design, and the introductory strip page to write/draw, so that'll be a few days work when I can fit it in. 

I'm still hoping to launch issue 1 at the Brighton International Comic Expo on 10th June but that might not be possible now. If I miss that date, it'll be launched at the Birmingham Comic Show (part of the Birmingham Comic Festival) on June 24th. 

I'll keep you all posted, so readers of this blog will the first to know! Thanks to everyone for your patience so far.

(Oh, and as for the spiteful type who claimed that people self-publish because of shortfalls of work in the mainstream comics industry; that's just faulty reasoning as usual. Self-publishing is all about having complete creative control of one's intellectual property, and having fun doing it!)

Wednesday 10 May 2017

This week in BEANO No.3884...

Quick previews of panels from my strips in this week's Beano. The Bash Street Dogs of Pup Parade enjoy lazing in the summer sun...

...whilst Ivy the Terrible asks her mum for a favour. (That won't end well!)

Plus lots of other strips from top Beano creatives such as Nigel Parkinson, Laura Howell, Jamie Smart, Barrie Appleby, Hunt Emerson, and more! 
Beano No.3884, out now, with 36 full colour pages for only £2.50.

All the fun of the Fest

Me, Phil Boyce, Ian Richardson, Yanick Paquette.
The Enniskillen Comic Fest was a very enjoyable weekend. You can read my report of it on my other blog here: 

Wednesday 3 May 2017

See you at the Comic Fest!

Today I'm getting stuff ready for the Enniskilen Comic Fest this weekend. I'm afraid that Combat Colin No.1 isn't even close to being finished yet, but I'll be bringing along my other comics Derek the Troll, Brickman Begins!, and Brickman Returns! plus various prints.

Brickman Begins! is in short supply now so get your copy while you can! It won't be reprinted in this format as that book was produced by Active Images, so if I ever do reprint it it'll be different and without the guest pages. 
I'll also be doing sketches of my characters on request, or of any character that I'll draw in my style.

The Comic Fest have released the programme of the events now so here's where you'll find us...

For more info, check out the Enniskillen Comic Fest Facebook page:

Monday 1 May 2017

Coming up this week...

Here's a few preview panels from the strips I have in print this week. First off, Team Toxic explore the underground caverns of the alien planet they're stranded on. What will they find? See Pits of Peril in Toxic No.288, on sale Wednesday 3rd May. 

Also on sale Wednesday is Beano No.3883, in which Pup Parade are inspired by the cinema...

...and Ivy the Terrible's dad finds where Ivy's left her Lego bricks...

Then, on Thursday 4th May, Doctor Who Magazine No.512 hits the shops and my Daft Dimension strip is inspired by a recent episode of the TV series...

You'll find all of these publications in WH Smith, Asda, newsagents, etc.

Thanks to all of you who follow this blog, and support my work. It's very much appreciated. If there's any of my old strips you'd like to see a sample of, let me know and I'll see if I can scan a couple of examples to show here.