Tag Archives: Webcomics

Webcomics Weekly: Olympus’ Forgotten Children

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

This week we’re taking a look at Olympus’ Forgotten Children. The strip is created by former Graphic Policy contributor Kenny Coburn, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about the webcomic below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?Cover

Kenny Coburn: Olympus’ Forgotten Children is an ongoing full length 22 page web comic that takes an honest look at the superhero trope that there are people with god like powers who are above corruption. The world of Olympus’ Forgotten Children is much more honest in how it views humanity than anything you will see at DC or Marvel. The world is not perfect and neither are the people with the most power.

The United States government had finally created a superhero serum to use in war. But, because of crippling debt caused by funding the research necessary to create the serum, the government was forced to sell it to the highest bidding civilians. After a year, those who purchased the serum began to fight back and war began. Fifteen years later, the former superheroes, now known as the Power Cartel, rule the planet. The only other survivors are those working for the Power Cartel or those that have gone into hiding.

It is in this world that three longtime friends, Monya, Kiarynn, and Baxter, begin to try and take the world back from the Power Cartel by any means necessary. Their journey takes them from their underground home through the wastelands of the former United States with only the faint hope of a better future driving them.

GP: How often do you update?

KC: The comic will be released quarterly as currently constructed. We are already hard at work on issue #2. For anyone who does enjoy the project and wants to support it, you can donate to our crowd funding page which will help us fund the project and greatly shorten the timeframe between issues. Every dollar is greatly appreciated.

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

KC: The first issue has just been released for free in its entirety. Currently, there are thirteen issues in total planned for the project so the series still has a long way to go before it is complete.

GP: Where did the idea for the comic come from?

KC: The idea for Olympus’ Forgotten Children came after watching Captain America: The First Avenger. The premise that a serum that turns a basic human being into essentially a god happened to go to the kindest person in existence just seemed ludicrous. The world doesn’t work that way and I wanted to explore the finer nuances of what would really happen if a superhero serum was created.

It isn’t exactly a pleasant conclusion that I came to, but I think it is an infinitely more interesting one. People don’t normally fit perfectly into the categories of good and bad. This is the idea I wanted to explore. Once I had that premise, I just continued to build logically into the way I saw the future shaping out.

The idea was very simple, but I think the results have been extraordinary.

Why it’s awesome: Honestly, anything I say here will just be a repeat of what Kenny had said above. Instead, I’ll just direct you to the introduction below and the first four pages in the gallery underneath the intro and let you see for yourselves.

Intro


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Advertisements

Webcomics Weekly: Bun Toons

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

This week we’re taking a look at Bun Toons. The strip is created by Ty Templeton, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about the webcomic below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?

Ty Templeton: Bun Toons isn’t “about” anything in particular, except a challenge to my brain:  Every Saturday morning, I wake up and draw a cartoon strip about SOMETHING.  I often don’t even know the subject matter when I go to bed on Friday night, and sometimes wake up without the slightest idea of what it will be.  If there’s something major in the news, either in comics news or real life news, the strip might be about that because it’s where my brain is hanging out…if there’s nothing current happening worth commenting on, I’ll tell a true story that’s amusing enough to share, or I’ll just do something silly and surreal that made me laugh when it crossed my cerebellum.  It’s about allowing my creativity to work without a net on a crushing deadline.  Each strip MUST MUST MUST go up before 4.00 pm no matter what.  (It used to be earlier, but I often get up around noon on a Saturday, and that gives me a little time…).  I allow for about an hour to conceive and write it, about an hour to draw it, and about an hour to colour/letter and post it, and then it goes up online without a backwards glance.  Some weeks I accidentally make something worth remembering, some weeks it’s not funny and best forgotten.  It’s the once-a-week challenge to my creativity that drives it.  I started doing it without any preparation one Saturday a few years ago, and have produced a strip every Saturday I’ve been home ever since then (except a brief hiatus when I was recovering from my heart attack, and my medications left me too spaced out to draw or write with any clarity).   On days when I’m out of town, or attending a store event or a comic convention, I post a re-run, since I’m literally no where near my scanner and computer, I don’t have a choice.  Every Saturday I’m home, it’s my wake up and draw ritual.

There are some Saturdays I grumble about it.  Some weeks I will tell myself “No one is making you do this, you don’t have an idea, just let it slide…” but I get over that in ten minutes and set my mind to SOMETHING.  There have been strips that are read by less than a thousand people, and then there are strips that are read by many tens of thousands of people and get passed around the net virally.  Obviously I prefer it if people read ’em, but in the long run, it’s about a relationship with my own brain, and the concept of “improvisational” cartooning.

Now, if it has any sort of theme or continuity, it’s sort of about what it’s like to be a comic book freelancer.  Many of my strips are about trends in comics, the trouble with deadlines, how my family and I interact.  I show up as a character in about half of them, and when I’m in the story, I appear as a six foot tall white rabbit wearing a t-shirt with my name on it.  But I also DON’T appear in about half of them, which might feature Donald Trump mud-wrestling an alien or something.  I find the ones that feature myself don’t go viral anywhere near as much as the ones that feature Frank Miller, or Batman or something the internet can bite into.  But that’s the nature of spontaneous creativity…I sort of have no control over it, and it goes where it goes.

GP: How often do you update?

TT: As mentioned in the above answer, I update every Saturday that I’m home.  That works out to about 45 a year.  There have been VERY rare occasions when I’ve done two in one week, because something occurred mid-week and I couldn’t help myself and I pipe in.  That’s happened maybe three times in the last few years, so it’s just something when I can’t stop myself.  Normally it’s about the challenge of being clever or worth reading because the clock says I have to.  I always loved the Lorne Michaels line about Saturday Night Live:  “The show goes on, not because it’s ready, but because it’s 11.30 on Saturday night, and we don’t have a choice”.  That attitude informs Bun Toons.  If it’s Saturday morning, I don’t have a choice.  Get creating, mofo.

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

TT:  I’ve been doing them as a weekly webcomic for about five years …BUT I’ve been doing the self-portrait rabbit cartoon strips for decades now.  The rabbit-icon first appeared in an old Fantagraphics comic series called “Critters” and he’s appeared in various industry newszines like SHOPTALK, REALMS, AMAZING HEROES, THE COMICS JOURNAL, etc.

Whenever I’m asked to do a column or an essay about something, I tend to do the rabbit.  Some of the rhythms of the strip are inspired by Feiffer’s stuff, as well as the basic idea of having a rodent stand in for me coming from MAUS.

GP: Where did the idea for the strip come from?

TT: The very very first rabbit strips came from nearly thirty years ago, when I was just starting out as a cartoonist.  I was married to a model, and she used to take work trips to Europe to do photoshoots, or spend a week or so in Manhattan on a gig, etc, and I used to do these little comic books for her when she got home, each entitled “What I did while you were gone”.  This was so she wouldn’t feel she was missing anything at home…and it made drawing them SO much easier to give all the characters animal totems instead of having to do recognizable portraits each time I needed a character to appear.  So I became a rabbit, and my friend Glenn because a squirrel, and various people because dogs and cats and badgers so that anyone could follow the story without wondering who was who.  The first time a Bunny story was actually published was because of a cartoonist friend of mine named Bernie Mireault, who was staying with me in Toronto for a few days, and he saw one of the little comic books, and asked if he could draw it up on full sized paper and “do it up right” for a story in Critters Magazine (a comic devoted to “funny animal” stories from Fantagraphics).  Bernie was insanely talented, so I said “Sure”…and then Bernie took the story and drew it up WONDERFULLY…except he changed my animal totem into a bear.  When I asked him why, he said I struck him more as a bear than a rabbit.  The story ran in CRITTERS (I forget the issue number, sorry…)…it’s called ‘THE TOTALLY TRUE TO LIFE 11:15 PM McDONALDS DRIVE THROUGH WINDOW CAPER” and you can read it here.

It got a good response from folks who read Critters, so I did a few more for the magazine, returning to being a rabbit in the second instalment, when I started drawing them myself.

Why it’s awesome: Because you honestly never know what to expect. Whether it’s a strip about Bill Finger’s involvement with Batman, or everything you need to know about something in four panels, there’s always something worth reading uploaded to the page. I read the webcomic every Sunday morning, and it never disappoints.

Below you’ll find a couple of Alex’s favourite strips (although it was tough it pick out just two, we stayed away from the Bill Finger strips that we recently linked to back in February for Graphic Policy’s Bill Finger week).

The first was posted to the site in November of 2015.thats-my-sickness.jpg

The second, is from October 2015;

halloween-true-life-websize.jpg


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Webcomics Weekly: Blood Catalysts

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

This week we’re taking a look at Blood Catalysts. The strip is created by Griffin Cost, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about the webcomic below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?

Griffin Cost: Blood Catalysts is a magical realist action-crime drama with absurdist undertones, taking place in 2003 in Northern Chihuahua, Mexico. The story follows a “family” of hitmen under the shaky new leadership of their old boss’ daughter, and begins when a young American boy is thrust into their world due to near-impossible circumstances.

I don’t wanna reveal much more, but I do feel compelled to point something out: this is NOT a fantasy webcomic, despite the genre having “magical” in the name. Maybe I’m mincing words, but I’ve had to explain this to almost all of my friends, some of whom were genuinely confused as to the whereabouts of the magic. Essentially, the story itself takes place in a world where the laws of reality still very much apply, save for one or a few exceptions that impact the characters within it. In a lot of ways it’s like a sandbox, or a social experiment in fictional form, where the craziness of one or a few instances help shed light on otherwise foreign and unrelatable human experiences.

GP: How often do you update?

GC: I update chapter-by-chapter on my site, with release dates for each chapter being announced about a month in advance. There’s a lot of reasons I don’t release Blood Catalysts page-by-page or in a similar system, but it boils down to three major factors:

-I’m a full-time college student.

-Some chapters and pages are more difficult/time consuming to draw/write than others. I’d rather build hype for one big release at a time than fuck with people by occasionally changing up the posting schedule.

-Releasing in bulk rather than in pieces lets me edit each chapter up to release, resulting in fewer (or zero) errors, less dead weight in the story, and an all around superior product. Plus, you, the reader, get a full-fledged story with every upload rather than breadcrumbs over the course of weeks.

In spite of this irregular schedule, I still average well over a page per week in terms of actual page count divided by weeks since launch.

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

GC: Chapter Zero (The prologue to the series/Volume 1) was released on June 16th, 2015, but I went through at least thirty drafts of the script over the course of a few years beforehand.

GP: Where did the idea for the strip come from?

GC: The original idea came when I was in high school, wanting to be edgy as fuck and prove to everyone I was DIFF’RENT.

At the time, I was immature and just kind of angsty and nihilistic about everything. Even though I’ve (hopefully) grown out of that mindset, the underlying sentiment of being angry and confused at a world you can’t understand, of feeling like every time you think you understand something having it blow up in your face, and of being constantly weighed down with fear about what the next day will bring, or even how many days you have left, that sort of adolescent existential crisis and need to matter still comprises the thematic core of the comic. However, rather than being a comic about nihilism and the worst of humanity, and being written by someone who advocates those viewpoints, the story is more or less an treatise on death and decay (moral, mental, physical, societal, etc.), as well as the realities and unexamined shadows that lead some to adopt certain philosophies and lifestyles. It’s less about the politics of Mexican crime and more about the human tragedies that everyone shares, and the ones could’ve been our own had life dealt us a different hand of cards.

Couple that with a personal interest in Mexican art, magical realism, psychology, and my guilty love of late 90’s/early 2000’s action movies, and you can get a decent idea of what Blood Catalysts reads like. If that piques your fancy, give it a go.

If not, do it anyway. It’s free.

Why it’s awesome: Blood Catalysts is a fantastically well illustrated comic that really makes excellent use of both light and dark textures in the artwork. The strip often uses some really interesting story telling methods that combine the art and text into some genuinely fantastic comic strips that give the reader a lot to love. I don’t, honestly, have much to say beyond what Griffin has already said above because I don’t want to simply repeat what he says, but Blood Catalysts is well worth a read when you get a chance. You won’t regret it.

Below you’ll find a selection of strips that originally appeared on the site.

12.jpg

23.jpg

39.jpg


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Webcomics Weekly: Woohooligan

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

This week we’re taking a look at Woohooligan. The strip is created by Sam Dealy, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about his webcomics below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?

Sam Dealy: The official tagline for Woohooligan is “Our madness is method free!”

It started out as a variety comedy, in the vein of Gary Larson’s Far Side, just individual, unrelated strips.

Since April, I’m publishing a very tongue-in-cheek, ongoing story about a typical(?) Midwestern girl’s adventures in heaven and hell. It was meant originally as a very loose parody of Dante’s Divine Comedy that started with the premise of reversing traditional conservative Christian ideas about sin, so in this story God is fine with gay people, but you still go to hell for eating bacon. Jesus is black, all the interesting people are in hell and the gods of other religions (Thor, Loki, etc) are also real. More recently, our snappy-dressing, gay Lucifer is more or less date-raped by an unassuming girl from Ohio.

This current story is about half-way through, so I expect to finish it some time probably late this year. It starts here.

GP: How often do you update?

SD: This past year it’s usually at least once per week, but it’s a little more involved than that.

I got a cancer diagnosis a few months ago and it shocked me out of my complacency about a career change I’ve been working on since 2006. So I set a goal for myself of replacing my disability income with my comedy by Jan 1, 2017. That’s a really ambitious goal that means I have to roughly double my income every two months.

Anyone who’s curious about that goal or would like to help can read more about it here. And for those willing to help spread the word about Woohooligan and my goal for this year, I’m giving away free copies of my first ebook, Into Dorkness. More info about that is also on that page.

So realistically to earn a living from my comedy by the end of the year, I have to put in at least 40hrs/week on both new pages as well as a lot of self-promotion and marketing. I’m probably putting in closer to 60 hours a week on average right now, but that also means my earnings are currently a little under $1/hr right now, so I need to improve on that.

My Patreon page promises at least two pages per month once I get to about minimum wage for those two pages (at about ten hours per page), which happens at around $187/mo. My target date for that goal is May 1st. So far I’ve produced a lot more than I’ve promised. So, if it seems like I’m not promising much on my Patreon, that’s because I don’t want to promise more than I can deliver and fall short. I’d much rather make smaller promises and be able to exceed those expectations. So I’m not going to promise to deliver the moon in the early days before I’m even earning minimum wage, and I hope people are happy with me delivering more than I’ve promised. :D

In January, I put out four pages (so one a week), two bonus pages just for my Patreon supporters, and a tribute to David Bowie. Patreon supporters also got access to a high-res copy of that David Bowie tribute, you can see here.

I also publish a progress report detailing all the things I’ve worked on over the previous month and how we’re doing toward the goal. It helps keep me honest with myself and it lets everyone else know what I’m doing to promote Woohooligan! The first update for January showed that we’re ahead of schedule. :D

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

SD: Man, it’s been a while now. :D I started in 2006, so this is year ten.

I had a couple of stumbles in previous years. I didn’t publish anything in 2008 due to not having the computer equipment I needed (and also still working a full-time job elsewhere).

At the end of 2013, I was in the hospital with the doctors worried I would slip into a diabetic coma and then immediately after that we moved across country to Ohio to the best house we could afford, which needed about $11k in immediate major heating and plumbing repairs, so I had to scramble for software engineering work to pay for all that. So there was another gap through most of 2014.

And then in April is when I started on the current story and have been publishing that consistently several times per month, so if you only counted the current story that’s almost a year now.

GP: Where did the idea for the strip come from?

SD: Depends which idea you’re talking about. ;P

I started in 2006 because I didn’t like where my life had gone. I wanted to do something better and in particular I wanted to make people laugh. That’s still the dream I’m after today. I have this crazy goal to earn a living making other people laugh. :D

The current story started innocently enough… it was an offhand joke about gluten-free diet advocates being zealots, like Jehova’s Witnesses or other missionaries. Once I’d shown someone sent to hell for eating bacon, I thought, “what if God hates bacon, but he’s fine with fags?” (I’m pansexual, I can say “fag”. :P) That led to “what if we just reverse all the rules that conservative Christians have?” So once you start down that road, obviously rich people don’t get into heaven, etc. The rest of the story grew naturally from there.

Why it’s awesome: The mind of Sam Dealy is a hell of a place to visit. Whether it’s his single panel comics (of which you’ll find one below), or the longer form episodic story that he’s producing (two installments are below), his website is one that I was lost in for hours, and his first book literally almost made me late for my day job. His comics are funny, engaging and sometime very thought provoking. Whether you pick up one or two of his books (and they’re all good), or just spend time reading the website, prepare to loose yourself for hours. And you’ll love every minute.

Below you’ll find a selection of strips that were originally posted to the site;

Woohooligan 1.pngWoohooligan 3.png

Woohooligan 2.png


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Webcomics Weekly: Blue And Blauw

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

This week we’re taking a look at Blue And Blauw. The strip is created by Nuno Kelly, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about the webcomic below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?

Nuno Kelly: Two outsiders building a life in Amsterdam, meeting the locals and other immigrants, and facing the reality of life and work abroad and the culture shock that comes with it. So while it’s set in Amsterdam, there’s something there for anyone who’s moved away from home or found themselves living and working in a strange environment.

GP: How often do you update?

NK: Every Monday, but it might go twice weekly in a few months.

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

NK: Since 4 January 2016. So not very long.

GP: Where did the idea for the strip come from?

NK: From personal experience – I’ve been living in Amsterdam as a foreigner for over ten years, so I try to funnel that into the strip along with lots of more general living and working situations that deserve to have a bit of fun poked at them.

Why it’s awesome: This is one of those webcomics that you can read either the entire story in order, or pick a page and just enjoy it. Blue And Blauw (pronounced as “blue and blue”) is a brilliant read however you choose to do it; there’s a subtle humour here that emerges as a physical comedy in certain scenes an as some brilliantly dry verbal comedy in others.

Below you’ll find two strips that were originally posted to the site;3-Bakfiets.jpg

And the second;

5-Idioot.jpg


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Webcomics Weekly: Eimurian Tales

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

This week we’re taking a look at Eimurian Tales. The strip is created by M D Penman, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about the webcomic below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?

M D Penman: The strip is actually a collection of stories all set in the same dark fantasy world. Some will interconnect, others will be totally separate. The first story The Waterbringer is the story of a princess and her bodyguard trying to escape a castle in the grips of madness.

The second tale, The Word Wielder, focuses on a church hunter called Sroka who is struggling with her faith and the duties that come with her position as Word Wielder. Sroka, and her companion Grussmann, set off to rescue their friend, an excommunicated hunter, from the clutches of a dark presence that lurks at the border of the realm.

GP: How often do you update?

MDP: The first tale The Waterbringer is complete now and can be read in it’s entirety. The Word Wielder will be starting the end of February after the website has been overhauled. The Waterbringer updated pretty sporadically but The Word Wielder will update bi-weekly.

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

MDP: Just over a year, I started it in November 2014.

GP: Where did the idea for the strip come from?

MDP: The idea for the series came from me basically wanting to draw some fantasy comics and not have to worry about a continuing narrative. I’m always worried when I start a long form project that I’ll get bored of the characters or setting so I didn’t want to limit myself to one cast of characters or one particular city or kingdom. On the flip side of that however I like works of fiction that build up the world without expressly telling us all the details about it, something that you can speculate on and puzzle out as you gain more knowledge. That’s something I’m hoping to capture throughout the different stories, that they can be enjoyed on their own yet give us an overall world narrative.

I’m also big fan of dark fantasy and horror themed stuff. I love Dark Souls, Berserk, Joe Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy, the Song of Ice and Fire novels, The Witcher and too many creepy and gory movies to list effectively. This project is super indulgent as it basically ticks the boxes for everything I love!

Why it’s awesome: Since I’ve been compiling this feature, I can honestly say that I have read some truly great comics that I would never have otherwise known about (and hopefully the same can be said for you, as well), and for me , this particular comic is one of the best. Eimurian Tales is webcomics that just sings to me on every level. As M D Penman says above, he’s a big fan of Dark Souls and Joe Abercrmbie’s books; so am I. Artistically, this is a polished comic with a very distinct flavour, and

Below you’ll find several pages originally posted to Eimurian Tales


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Webcomics Weekly: Who Is The Girl

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

This week we’re taking a look at Who Is The Girl. The strip is created by Cary Polkovitz, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about the webcomic below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?

Cary Polkovitz: Who Is The Girl is meant to be a companion piece to the graphic novel Genius Loci due out later this year.  Genius Loci is the “director’s cut” of the book UKIYO which debuted in limited release in December 2015. Who Is The Girl is about a young woman who is attempting to be a webcam star. The story takes place in the near future and contains some cyberpunk elements. It does deal with some “mature” themes (sex, drug use, violence) but what doesn’t these days?

GP: How often do you update?

CP: Who Is The Girl updates every Wednesday.

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

CP: I’ve been producing Who Is The Girl for about three months now, but the graphic novels UKIYO and Genius Loci were started three years ago.

GP: Where did the idea for the strip come from?

CP: The strip was initially intended to be a sort of advertising for the graphic novel, but it took on a life of its own as I wrote it. I really allowed me to incorporate more ideas than I felt comfortable including in the printed book. To really go back, the characters were in their infancy when I drew and produced my first comic series Nau Headhunter (through NeoTek Iconography) in the early 1990s.  I always had a soft spot for the characters and was just kind of waiting for inspiration to strike for a story that I felt was worth telling with them. Of course the characters have changed quite a bit over 20 years but they were definitely the inspiration for this story. I launched a kickstarter for a print accompaniment to whoisthegirl.info.

Why it’s awesome: Who Is The Girl goes beyond the traditional webcomic interface, and really incorporates a multimedia experience into the reading(?) experience. On top of that, there’s a fantastic greyscale art style here that looks sophisticated and incredibly honest and raw, without ever loosing any of the detail. Who Is The Girl is certainly on the darker side of things, but don’t let that discourage you – this is a webcomic that could work just as well in print as it does online.

Below you’ll find two strips that were originally posted to the site. Enjoy!

whoisthegirl1.jpg

And the second;

whoisthegirl2.jpg


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Webcomics Weekly: Endtown

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

This week we’re taking a look at Endtown. The strip is created by Aaron Neathery, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about the webcomic below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?

Aaron Neathery: Depends upon the size of the nutshell!  Frankly, one of the biggest hurdles Endtown has had is that every synopsis makes the strip sound like something it isn’t. The TV Guide blurb would read something like “Mutants v. eugenicists in a post-apocalyptic battle for the future!” which, while roughly accurate, sounds awful, and I assure you that Endtown isn’t (or, at least, I don’t think it is).

Briefly, there has been an epidemic of sudden, spontaneous human mutation followed by a six-minute World War fought almost entirely with disintegration weaponry.  The world, or what we know if it, now consists mostly of a lot of dust, the occasional ruin, and two warring factions of survivors; mutants who mostly resemble Terrytoons background characters and humans who live the entirely of their lives sealed in hazmat suits for fear of contracting whatever it is that made everyone else mutate.  The humans, termed “Topsiders” by the mutants, rule what’s left of the surface from within domed colonies and are sworn to exterminate the mutants as (presumed) carriers of a (presumed) mutagenic virus. The mutants hide below ground in their own colonies, of which Endtown is one, and just try to survive the Topsiders’ extermination campaign, and that’s if they don’t kill each other first.

And even *that* doesn’t sound quite right..  I think the four biggest words in an Endtown word cloud would be “Walt Kelly”, “Lovecraft”, “politics” and “canned beans”.  You’ll probably just have to read it in order to get it…

GP: How often do you update?

AN: Three days a week, M-W-F.  I’d been producing five a week until 2015, but the workload helped land me in the hospital. I wish I was joking about that.

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

AN: Since March of 2008.  There are canon precursors to Endtown dating back to the early 90s.

GP: Where did the idea for the strip come from?

AN: An attempt at having my cake and eating it, too.  I’d spent years trying to get a syndicated strip off the ground while watching in dread as the newspaper industry dried up.  In the end, I decided to forget syndication and just try to please myself by devising a webcomic that had room for pretty much every last thing I’ve ever found interesting; science fiction, funny animal characters, classic film comedians, relationships, politics, war, sex, mechanical television, etc. etc.. TheAsterix comics were definitely an inspiration, with Endtown the equivalent of the Gauls’ village and the Topsiders as the Romans closing in on all sides.  Roy Crane’s Wash Tubbs strips from the 30s were also occupying a big chunk of my brain at the time because they’re so fantastically freewheeling.  I love the idea of simply sending characters out into the unknown and seeing what happens.  Another inspiration was Peyo’s original Smurf comics because I love the social and political satire. “King Smurf” in particular was in my thoughts; Papa Smurf has to leave the village for a couple of weeks and the rush to fill the power vacuum results in a dystopic monarchy and a violent uprising that nearly turns lethal! I love that balance between disarmingly cute and funny and deadly serious and, during the first several months of Endtown, I made self-conscious effort to replicate it without much success.  Most of the initial strips were written with the idea in mind that Endtown would be a funny adventure strip with dark moments, but once I stopped overthinking it, Endtown evolved into whatever the heck kind of thing it is now.

Why it’s awesome: Well… because it just is. I can’t pinpoint why, exactly I enjoy this comic so much, and I think that’s the beauty of it. If the strips below whet your appetite even a little, I urge you to follow the link above and read some more of the fantastic Endtown.

Below you’ll find a selection of Endtown strips. Enjoy!

end110321end130705end141114end150729end160108

 


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Webcomics Weekly: Radio Silence

Welcome to Graphic Policy’s spotlight on webcomics, where we take a look at one of the many comics available online every Monday: Webcomics Weekly (but don’t be fooled by the “weekly” part of the title; the feature may happen more or less frequently than that). We’re defining webcomics as any comics published online for free consumption by the general public that doesn’t require a  subscription service.

radiosilence_promopage_smallThis week we’re taking a look at Radio Silence. The strip is created by Vanessa Stefaniuk, who was kind enough to answer a few questions for us about the webcomic below.

Graphic Policy: In a nutshell, can you tell us what the strip’s about?

Vanessa Stefaniuk: Radio Silence is a coming-of-age tale of five musician friends trying to make it big in the music world. Their rise to fame will test their friendships, and will push them on a path of self discovery and self acceptance. It’s a fun, sometimes funny, sometimes dramatic slice of life type story with silly accents and the occasional rocking out like true rock stars. It will approach more serious tones as the story progresses, such as acceptance of sexuality, past abusive relationships coming back to haunt, and weighing family troubles. And then there’s a silly wizard hat and a Rihanna ringtone. We’ve got it all!

GP: How often do you update?

VS: Updates usually hit Tuesdays and Fridays.

GP: How long have you been producing the strip?

VS: Radio Silence was released in July 2015 with a big 10 prologue pages to try and get people hooked off the bat. Now we’re well into our first chapter half a year later!

GP: Where did the idea for the strip come from?

VS: Somewhere between watching a lot of band documentaries and reading the Wikipedia page for bands such as Badfinger, I became fascinated with the behind the scenes lives of these people we put up on pedestals. The idea developed with help from a friend who encouraged me and wrote the main story points alongside me, exploring this world of this British rock band and what chaos could ensue. Additionally, my brother studied music composition at McGill University, and I’m having fun collaborating with him with all the technical sides to this whole “band” thing!

Why it’s awesome: I’m from England, and one thing I’ve noticed in the ten years since I’ve been over this side of the pond is that when some people write an English character they tend to rely a little too much on the stereotypical verbiage of the English. Mate, cheers, bloke, you’ve all heard it (or read it) when a writer is trying to write an English character. Sometimes it’s okay, sometimes it’s bloody terrible, and once in awhile it’s natural.

Vanessa Stefaniuk‘s Radio Silence is one of those rare times when it felt utterly natural. Indeed it wasn’t until I asked her that I found out while she has visited England, and has family from her mum’s side there, she’s actually Canadian.

But beyond that, Radio Silence is a fantastically constructed story about a band’s rise to prominence; the characters remind me of friends I haven’t seen in years (since I left England, actually), they’re relatable, engaging and fallible. As the comic progresses you start to get a real sense of who they are, and you genuinely  pull for the band.

Honestly, this is a fantastic webcomic that you should keep up with.

Below you’ll find a selection of pages from the comic. Enjoy!


If you’d like to have your webcomic featured here, then drop us an email.

Comics Herstory: Emily Carroll

24727085Emily Carroll is a writer and artist from Ontario who has been terrifying readers since 2010. She gained notoriety for her webcomic, His Face All Red, which, after publication on her site, made rounds (and still occasionally pops up) on various sites.

Carroll began her comic career in webcomics, publishing fairy tales, romance, and dream journals in addition to horror stories. Her illustration work has appeared in Paste Magazine, Wolfen Jump online anthology, and Spera. Carroll also illustrated the graphic novel Baba Yaga’s Assistant, written by Marika McCoola and published last year.

In 2014, she published her first collected work, a book of short horror comics titled Through the Woods. Visually, the book is stunning. Carroll stretches the medium, using a combination of art, coloring, and lettering that builds the suspense of each story. The illustrations themselves are layered and rich, giving the book an otherworldly feel.

What makes the book truly special, though, isn’t just the visual element. The stories are creepy, yes, but can feel ambiguous. However, when these comics are read as a way to understand reaction to trauma and trauma itself, they become much more accessible. The horror of seeing something that cannot be there is grounded in the very real horror that comes with various types of loss.

91bldt8cbtlThis theme is also exemplified especially well in Carroll’s webcomic, Margot’s Room. As with the print medium, Carroll pushes the boundaries of webcomic by forcing readers to interact with the comic in order to read it. Clicking on the comic (available on her site) takes the reader to a screen with a poem written over an empty bedroom with bloodstained floorboards and a broken window. In order to read the comic, readers must click on various objects in the room, all related to the poem at the top of the page.

The order in which the reader is supposed to click on the objects is given, but somewhat subtly. The end result of this is that it forces the reader to interact with the trauma that the main character has gone through. The fact that the order isn’t immediately clear points to the disorienting nature of a traumatic experience, and this produces a visceral sort of fear.

Carroll continues to push the boundaries of storytelling in any given medium, which makes her an exciting artist and storyteller to follow. These stories are valuable not only for their aesthetic appeal (which is not a small amount of appeal) but for forcing readers to consider the source of the horror in the story–what constitutes horror for the characters and why.

« Older Entries Recent Entries »