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Recommended Webcomic Reads

Monday, April 25, 2011

Currently going through a bit of a lull in the webcomic production process as I fix some outdated code on the website. Thought this might be a good opportunity to share a few online comics I’ve enjoyed reading lately. You’ll find the selections organized by length (shortest to longest) so you can pick and choose based on your allotted free time:

If you have 1-2 minutes to spare-
Adrift webcomic by JP Coovert

JP Coovert’s Adrift is an extremely fun and appealing little webcomic I discovered shortly after my “save a whale, harpoon a poacher” tweet. In addition to being a sucker for anything nautical themed, I also enjoy Coovert’s clear and simple art style which complements his clear and simple message perfectly.

If you have 5-10 minutes to spare-
Nothing is Forgotten webcomic by Ryan Andrews

Ryan Andrews’ Nothing is Forgotten is a thoroughly involving stand-alone webcomic that also serves as fitting homage to the work of Hayao Miyazaki. It’s a wordless comic but it certainly doesn’t read like one because the artwork does such a good job of telling the story.

If you have 25-30 minutes to spare-
Ivy online comic sampler by Sarah Oleksyk

Sarah Oleksyk’s Ivy is a gripping, richly realized “coming of age” story that should strike a chord with anyone that was fortunate enough to survive high school. While I can’t say I can relate to some of the darker situations the main character finds herself in I can certainly relate to the roller coaster of emotions that come with being a teenager (and how said emotions can render one extremely vulnerable to being lead down the wrong path given the right circumstances). I should point out that some of the content may be unsuitable for work and the webcomic is actually the first chapter of a 200 page graphic novel released in February. It’s a comic that can be enjoyed on multiple levels, both on the surface as an involving dramatic narrative and in the smaller details which hint at a much deeper character study. I particularly enjoyed how Sarah manages to mirror the emotional states of her character through the rendering of a telephone cord and her clever use of shadows during a pivotal scene (but you’ll have to buy the book if you want to read that part). ;)

Hawking Mini-Comics at WonderCon

Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Handing out mini-comics at 2011 WonderCon comic convention.

Golden Gate Park baseball field.

San Francisco spring flowers.

Visited the WonderCon convention in San Francisco over the weekend. I had prepared/printed off around a hundred Random Rambles #2 ashcans the night before with the intent to drop them off at the freebie table (as I’ve done in previous years). Unfortunately the staff there have decided to turn this simple, harmless method of promoting one’s work into a huge hassle. First I talk to the guy manning the freebie booth who tells me I need to go to the press booth on the other side of the convention to get my mini-comic approved. I wait in a long line at the press booth only to find out that the only guy that is qualified for the job of judging the appropriateness of a 5-page mini-comic is on lunch break and to come back later. I come back later, wait in another long line, finally meet the head-honcho of the ashcan approval department, the guy doesn’t even glance at my comic and instead tells me that I’m not important enough to have my material evaluated because I don’t have an exhibitor badge. Well thanks a lot for the massive waste of time fella, why didn’t someone tell me that in the first place?!

Anyway with that whole debacle behind me I took to the exhibition floor, determined that the previous night’s work (and $40 in printing expenses) not be in vain. A couple hours later I had successfully managed to pawn off my entire stack of ashcans to various perusers loitering the indy comics section. I don’t know if my latest promotional stunt was worth the effort, judging from the current state of my website statistics probably not, but I hope, at the very least, I didn’t annoy too many people with my obnoxious, unrehearsed and painfully generic “free comics” hawking.

On the plus side the weather was uncharacteristically spectacular and I ended up spending the majority of the evening outdoors soaking in the spectacular sights and sampling the delectable cuisines from the great city by the bay. Certainly everything didn’t work out the way I wanted it to and I wish I was able to spend more time browsing the convention floor but sometimes you just gotta roll with the punches and make the best of the situation. There’s always next year…