Monday, August 28, 2006

STORYBOARDS 1

Before I go off on my jollies, thought I'd post some bits of what I've been working on. These are composites for a animatic done in flash, so each element has to be a seperately drawn element, every arm, figure, background, forground etc. These are composites of those drawings in a standard storyboard format (but without notations or directions).

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STORYBOARD STRIP 1

And a sneak preview of my new website...

page 2

More to come.

Friday, August 11, 2006

"I READ THE NEWS TODAY, OH BOY..."

CURRENT SOUNDTRACK: "A Day in the Life", The Beatles, Sgt Pepper

Kinda depressing watching the news and trying to work out how I'll survive a 4 hour plane journey in two weeks time with no hand luggage, nothing to write on, draw or read, thanks to the kneejerk security measures instigated following yesterdays arrests of terror suspects. Be even more depressing if they HADN'T been caught obviously, but one wonders if air travel will return to normal. I think not. Oh to be the last son of Krypton.

I've been putting off a load of reviews of recent books and films I've seen including Superman Returns (which is something of an essay). I'll get round to it eventually, in the meantime updating the site and the blogs. To whit...

REDEYE MAGAZINE #6 RELEASED LATE SEPTEMBER

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The latest issue of the vital magazine for indie comics features interviews with popular Wildermere and Mixy creator Alex CF; autobiographical cartoonist Lee Kennedy; former Judge Dredd Megazine editor Alan Barnes; legendary Zenith artist Steve Yeowell; and critically acclaimed cartoonist for The Guardian and one half of Cabanon Press, Tom Gauld, who also provides the cover.

We also have feature articles including The 2000AD Art of Mike McMahon; a detailed retrospective of V For Vendetta from sketchbook to DVD release in The Road to Larkhill; an analysis of the new Virgin Comics line in Greatest Stories Never Told?; and the grammar of comics is explored in The Cartoonist’s Toolbox.

Plus an exclusive guest column from the legendary creator Pat Mills on the nature of fandom; convention and festival reports from New York, San Diego, Naples and London; preview art from upcoming titles; news, competitions and an massive expanded reviews section.

“A joy to read.” Comics Nexus
“An essential purchase.” Silverbulletcomicbooks.com
“Worth every penny.” Comics International
“Excellent… a vital read.” SFX Magazine

REDEYE MAGAZINE ISSUE 6, 80+ PAGES, Colour cover, b/w interiors, £3.00/$6.00/E6.00

As many of you will have heard REDEYE 6 was delayed but is back on track and should be heading towards the printers by September 1st, just waiting on final elements and initial retail orders to come in before we can go to print. I also want to say a massive thank you to those who have subscribed, you don’t realise how every single person is helping to keep the magazine going. With issue 7 the cover price will be raised slightly, but anyone who subscribes by November will be protected from the price rise.

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REDEYE 5 won another SFX fanzine of the month award, the third in a row for the magazine. We must be doing something right.

sfx 145 fanzine of the month award

In the meantime I’ve been pushing to raise more awareness for the Engine line including a news item and ad in Comics International, taking part in Forbidden Planet’s Brit Comics Month (link to: http://forbiddenplanet.co.uk/blog/ ) which has resulted in our titles being listed on their site (link to: http://www.forbiddenplanet.co.uk/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=388_4983_4986), and me taking part in a email/rountable discussion about Brit comics today along with Matt Badham of www.bugpowder.com, John Freeman of www.downthetubes.net, Dez Skinn of www.qualitycommunications.co.uk, and Ricj Johnston of Lying in the Gutters over at (http://forbiddenplanet.co.uk/blog/?p=1260). I’ve also been interviewed by www.2000adreview.co.uk (http://2000adreview.co.uk/smallpress/2006/renshaw/barryrenshaw.shtml), Comics Nexus (http://comicsnexus.insidepulse.com/articles/50017) and if you weren’t already sick to the back teeth of me, then you can go to indiespinnerrack.blogspot.com, and keep watch for their forthcoming UK Invasion. ISR is a podcast dedicated to indie comics run by lovely blokes Charlito and Mr Phil, and after successfully covering the US scene they have now been introduced to all the goodies their colonial masters have also produced. There are some top names to come in their interviews including Hotel Fred’s Roger Langridge and Lorenzo of Malcolm Magic fame.

You’ll also find us in Shane Chebsey’s latest venture, in his Frontline Distribution Catalogue, which is a free Previews style catalogue for indie comics, and alongside ours and other titles are those from Markosia and Top Shelf. In another effort to shake things up and establish better ways of getting our stuff out there, I’ve decided www.Smallzone.co.uk will be our main distributor to retailers. There are other things in the pipeline that I’ll be announcing hopefully by next month.

DEVELOPMENTS:
For the next 18 months Engine will be focusing on a few projects which are already in development, which means I’m unable to consider any new script submissions until further notice. I am as ever looking for artists, and looking to expand the Comic Book Reader area of the site, which means I’m looking for completed work that is ready to be converted to CBR files for download. For details on that, go to the SUBMISSIONS page.

VANGUARD: “A product of the secret Soviet Super Soldier programme, Vanguard fought in many of WW2’s pivotal battles. Put into suspended animation by a paranoid Stalin at the end of WW2, he is revived in 1976 by a Brezhnev hankering after the former glories of a declining Soviet Union, clutching at symbols which time has robbed of their intimidating power.” Daniel Whiston’s epic ‘Captain America meets Gorky Park’ moves closer to being brought to life with an 8 page introduction for FUSION to be illustrated by new engineer Pedro Cruz. Go to their entries on the ENGINEERS page for more information on their past work.

FUSION: I’d like to announce two newcomers illustrating two upcoming stories, Caroline Parkinson on Naomi Claydon’s VOX LONDONIUM: GHOST OF GLASS, and David Neal on Adam Bealby’s MR GLEE PRESENTS: THE PANORAMANIAC. As both series have been constructed so each episode is self contained and can be enjoyed in their own right, however previous chapters can be read in earlier issues of FUSION. I’ll be posting preview art as soon as they arrive. In the meantime, you can read their entries on the ENGINEERS page and check out their previous work.

WEBSITE UPDATES:
Two new CBR files have been made available to download this month: the award winning vicious vampire oneshot BLACK HARVEST MOON by writer Terry Stock and artist Colin Stanford, and FUSION 4, with contributions from Garen Ewing and Roger Langridge among many others. More to come next month.

EVENTS:
A couple of dates for your diaries:

NORTHWEST INDEPENDENT BOOK MARKET, 1-2 Sep, St Ann's Square, Manchester
Smallzone’s Shane Chebsey will be representing the UK small press community as well as Engine Comics when he lays out his spread in St Anns Square. Contact chebbo@aol.com.

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LANCASTER COMIC CONVENTION, 28 October, Williamson Park, Lancaster
The first annual Lancaster Comics Convention will take place in the Ashton Memorial in the grounds of Williamson Park on October 28th 2006. The event will promote both the small comics press and include guest appearances by some North England-based professional comics creators. This event will be part convention and part art exhibition, and an ideal event for the small press to publicise and promote their books and merchandise.

This event will provide a showcase for local North-West creators to have an event specifically to increase public interest in their work and, hopefully, also serve as opening up new markets for creators who are based south of England.
On the day itself, there will be tables for Small Press companies to sell their comics and merchandise, currently priced at £10.00, and also a few boards up for artists to showcase their work - framed, and if applicable, to sell. In addition, there will be some special guests making appearances, and competitions and prizes to be won. The event will be publicised all over the North West, in comic shops and the two large universities in Lancaster itself, as well and the huge Universities in nearby Preston, Manchester, and Liverpool. Contact: antmercer@hotmail.com and http://lancastercomics.co.uk to keep an eye on developments.

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BIRMINGHAM COMICS SHOW 2006, December 9/10, Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Birmingham B9 4AA.
The first Birmingham International Comics Show is now officially going ahead. With star guests such as Dave Gibbons, Alan Davies, Duncan Fregredo, Charlie Adlard, Mark Buckingham, Mark Farmer, Staz Johnson, Garry Leach, John McCrea, Phil Winslade, and Sean Phillips already confirmed and 30 top small press publishers already booked not to mention some of the UK's most respected comics dealers and publishers, you really can't afford to miss this fantastic event. Contact Shane at chebbo@aol.com and keep an eye on http://www.thecomicsshow.co.uk/ for details.

We'll be there, will you?

ENGINE BANNER