BugPowder Weblog
Regular slugs of news for the UK Small Press Comics Nation (huh?)
August 31 2004

I met Carla Berrocal, a terrific cartoonist from Spain at this years Caption. Her site, though in Spanish has some great archived artwork, much of it is without words luckily for mono-linguists like myself.

# Posted by Mardou

Jessica Abel's updated the DIY section of her website to include a making mini-comics section. Nice!

# Posted by Mardou
August 28 2004

The Guardian's Review section profiles Art Spiegelman today.

# Posted by Steve Block

Matt Broersma's latest sketchbook diary, "Adjustments", is a trenchant social commentary, an intellectually challenging excursion into meta-fiction and moreover, a cartoon about hoovering. Download the PDF here.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Marc Baines writes in with news from his Kingly Books enterprise. The forthcoming Chris Reynolds book, The Dial now has blurb on the Kingly site along with sample pages. Also in the gallery is Lobsterdog by Micke Lindebergh, a young Swedish cartoonist currently living in London.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

At Caption Jared Myland of OK Comics in Leeds gave a brief talk on the best ways to get your small press comics stocked in comic shops. I asked him to send through a brief summary of the details:

OK Comics actively support Small Press, Self Published and Home Made comics. We will stock pretty much anything on a sale or return basis, this reduces the financial risk to us and also means creators can get any unsold books back at any time.

We take one third of the cover price of any comics sold, so if you need £2.00 to cover the production cost of the book, and make a bit of money, expect it to sell in shops for £3.00. Remember if it's going through a small press distributor, they'll want to make money on it too. Everybody has bills to pay.

I prefer it if there isn't a cover price printed on the comic so I have more control over the price, the same way I do with US imports. Comics with a more interesting format sell quite well. Colour covers and free gifts promote sales too. It's always advisable to put together some paperwork and get confirmation of receipt, so there can be no confusion when the comics are paid for or returned.

As for getting your stuff into other stores, well, retailers are very busy people, so I'd advise making it easy for them to deal with you. Let them know straight away that there is no financial risk and it's 'hassle free'. Don't worry too much about describing the story or comparing it to anything else, retailers are only really interested in the financial arrangement.

If you would like any more information or have specific queries, feel free to contact me through OK Comics.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Daniel Merlin Goodbrey has been doing interesting stuff with web comics for a while now and has recently been investigating the radical new medium of physical paper products. Of his new comic, The Last Sane Cowboy he writes:

"Take a trip out into the History-Plains of the Unfolded Earth in a surreal story of high-insanity in the Old West. Complete with talking horses, supernatural gunplay and one very lost goldfish. Now on sale at Emerl.com, hypercomic innovator Daniel Merlin Goodbrey's latest foray into original print comics is guaranteed to be just as weird his webcomic work, but features 100% more paper! And two staples!"

Order it here

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Tying in with the launch of his new book, Manga: Sixty Years of Japanese Comics, Paul Gravett is running a weekend of events at the ICA in London under the ComICA banner.

Manga Live! on Friday Sept 3rd is a talk, chaired by Paul, featuring "Hisaki Sakurai, who has adapted The Ring and features in new anthology Manga Mover; Kan Takahama, rising star of 'Nouvelle Manga', creator of the sexy slice-of-life Kinderbook and Mariko Parade, the tender break-up of Frederic Boilet and his model, Mariko Konno, who will also be present. Joining them and others in conversation are Sean Michael Wilson, manga publisher and writer, and Paul Gravett"

Then on the Saturday following is the Manga Live! Manga Masterclass: "Watch or take part in a programme of 'live' demonstrations, practical lessons, jam sessions and story creation with the invited guests from Tokyo. They will be joined by Mitsuba 'Supernova' Wajima, Takashi 'Fashionable Fascism' Makita, Kiriko Kubo, Misako Rocks, Puppetbear and others.

Also being shown will be a preview screening of Rogue Farm, the first adult animation film to be commissioned in the style of Japanese anime by a UK broadcaster and film body. It's a 24-minute science-fiction drama based on a short story by Nebula Award-winning sci-fi writer Charles Stross. Co-director Garry Marshall will introduce the film at 1.30pm."

(Gary Marshall? Is that the Gary Marshall? Interesting...)

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Cartoonist and Musician Jeffrey Lewis is touring the UK in September.

Sept 15 - Oxford / Sept 16 - London / Sept 17 - Bristol / Sept 18- Birmingham / Sept 19 - Newcastle / Sept 20 - Manchester / Sept 21 - Leeds/ Sept 22 - Hull / Sept 23 - Leicester

I'll be at the Birmingham gig and Jeremy Dennis will be at the Oxford one. Should be good!

# Posted by Pete Ashton
August 24 2004

New issue of the online Indy Magazine is up, including an article on Key Untranslated European Graphic Novels and a review of Cerebus.

# Posted by Steve Block

As most of you know, the distro side of There goes Tokyo has slowed down and pretty much ground to a halt. We've got tons of small press comics left and there will be a new bookstore called BOOKVILLE opening next year in Newcastle which is keen to take them and possibly stock other small press titles. WE WILL BE CONTACTING CREATORS INDIVIDUALLY REGARDING THEIR STOCK. This is a general post/heads up as some of you are very hard to get hold of. Feel free to get in touch with us at the usual address:tgtokyo@animail.net

# Posted by
August 21 2004

Gregory Benton's comics can be read online here and are worth delving into. Particularly great is the Anais Nin strip from the currently dropped publication Big Book of Wild Women.

# Posted by Mardou

The BBC Cult subsite has launched a comics section, mainly reproducing 2000AD strips of distinction, but of note is the Independents section featuring pages from Carl Critchlow's Thrud the Barbarian and Martin Eden's The O Men. Someone should find out who's running this and bombard them with more stuff.

# Posted by Pete Ashton
August 19 2004

Thought Balloons have blogged a Silver Bullets interview with editor George Khoury regarding True Brit, a collection of interviews with Brian Bolland, Dave Gibbons, Alan Davis, Bryan Hitch, Dave McKean, David Lloyd and others.

# Posted by Steve Block
August 18 2004

From part of the team that put together the amazing arts festival Ladyfest Bristol last summer comes Bring Yourself Fest. Hopefully there'll be as big comics contingent:

Bring Yourself Fest is a free festival of D.I.Y underground adventure, taking place in Bristol on Friday 3rd, Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th of September 2004.

It is a case of spontaneity, of interactivity, of you-and-me-kid-busting-loose. The festival will incorporate music and visual art and workshops and political agenda and dance parties and food. We encourage anyone with ideas to get in touch or to show up and shake some action!

We will be using spaces around bristol that are not the 'usual' musical venues. Bring Yourself Fest is a festival completely removed of all links to the musick industry and the brewery industry and all these ogres that like to have their fingers in our pies and that determine so much what can happen at shows and even who can attend and how much money we take out of our pockets.

Bring Yourself Fest welcomes everybody regardless of age, income, gender, sex, race, sexuality or anything else...

We stand for 'do' 'it' 'yourself'. We stand for fun, we mean stick it to thee man for kicks. We mean that your life is a political vehicle - that you can have your cake and eat it too. We are an anti-consumerist affair - be involved if only to hang out and dance, sing along, be there ('cos any events are made up as much by the people who attend as by the bands or artists or whoever...). Entrance is free - the price of admission is getting yourself here...

We can't really fit many more bands into the schedual we're putting together, but feel free to come and put on your own show in the street/park etc. if there is a workshop you'd like to hold, please get in touch, we'll find you a space and help wherever we can... (see www.bringyourselffest.com for confirmed line-up/schedual etc.)

We have limited free accomodation available to people travelling from out-of-town. Please write to kids@bringyourselffest.com to enquire more/book a space.

you can write to us at: kids@bringyourselffest.com

Bring Yourself Fest
Box 76
Greenleaf Bookshop,
Colston Street

# Posted by Mardou
August 17 2004

Boing Boing points to a great animation of a Jim Woodring comic. This sort of thing should be on Saturday morning TV...

# Posted by Pete Ashton
August 16 2004

As you're no doubt aware, Caption just happened at the weekend and the general consensus of those who made it seems to be that it was one of the best ever. Loads of really interesting panels, loads of friendly people, loads of cool comics...

If you went and have written a report, posted up some photos or scanned in your sketches, pop over to the to Caption LiveJournal and leave a link.

# Posted by Pete Ashton
August 15 2004

Profile and potted history of Viz the comic in The Scotland On Sunday website.

"It is not big and it is not clever but, for anyone yet to snuff out all vestiges of schoolboy humour, it is very funny."

# Posted by Steve Block
August 13 2004

the clock is ticking!

There's still time to make arrangements to get to Caption this weekend folks!

Get yourself over to Oxford & once there,
this is how to get to the venue

And if you're still wavering, then have a shufty at the programme.

Oh, and don't forget that this is one of the more 'social' comic conventions & there's a bar & lots of people who, just like you, think small press comics matter.

Time to put the world to rights!

# Posted by mooncat
August 11 2004

image of The Cloak by Gary Spencer Millidge

Heidi MacDonald is reporting on her blog news of an auction, found here, in aid of the Trinity Hospice Charity. Artists involved include Jock, Al Davison, Charlie Adlard, Gary Northfield, Paul J Holden, Steve Pugh, Paul Ridgon, Peter Gross, Mike Hawthorne, Dave Windett, Gary Spencer Millidge, Trevor Hairsine, Len O’Grady, Adi Tantimedh, and Hunt Emerson.

# Posted by Steve Block
August 8 2004

Roger Sabin's irregular round up of Graphic Novels appears in todays Observer, tackling, in brief, McSweeney's 13, Le Gun, Clyde Fans, Foodboy, Auschwitz and Paul Gravett's Manga: Sixty Years Of Japanese Comics.

# Posted by Steve Block
August 7 2004

image of Hitler being axed, May 8 1945, leeched from 24 hr museum's websiteThe 24 hour museum website reports that a mystery cartoonist's war diary has been donated to the Cartoon Art Trust Museum.

From crude drawings produced in June 1944, just after D-Day, to increasingly sophisticated comments on the Allied campaign in Europe, the images tell the story of the closing days of the Second World War from the perspective of an ordinary man.

# Posted by Steve Block

McSweeny's 13 leeched from Guardian

The Guardian get Charlie Higson to review McSweeney's 13: The Comics Issue.

"One brief flick though this book should be enough to convince even the most visually impaired poet that in the right hands comics can be enormously powerful. There's a huge range of styles on display, from obsessive, almost mundane, autobiographical pieces, to historical pieces, comics about Kierkegaard, the twin towers, the Bosnian war, prisoners on death row, and daft little gags about nuns and squirrels."

# Posted by Steve Block

Today's Guardian Review section has a look at The Fixer by Joe Sacco.

The Fixer by Joe Sacco leeched from Guardian

"Sacco's drawings are monochrome, intricately cross-hatched and shaded, very much a product of the American underground scene that rejected the superhero ethos ... the Fixer is more morally complex and more artistically ambitious than many well-reviewed novels."

# Posted by Steve Block

mom's cancer: family portrait

Mom's Cancer is a self evident title to a comic strip done with sensitivity & grace. It reaches deeper than the easily readable 'conventional styling' of the cartooning may at first imply.

# Posted by mooncat
August 5 2004

stripfight banner

Stripfight is an interesting little idea where contributors submit a weekly strip & viewers rate the strips; the one with the highest rating wins.
Why not join in? Submit a strip?

Far be it from me to mention - but I rather enjoyed Weatherwise's take on Creation in a Kochalka style strip.

# Posted by mooncat

image leeched from lorna's website

Lorna Miller's website has been updated/redesigned recently - so what better excuse to visit/revisit her site & peruse her fine work?

Oh - & there's this rather amusing cartoon causing comment on TCJ messageboards

# Posted by mooncat
August 4 2004

From Poopsheet comes news of the next issue of Stripburger, the essential Slovenian comix anthology.

Instead of a voluminous topic edition, we prepared a collection of mini-comics by thirteen artists for this year's special issue. This goody bag contains comics from Korea to France - with a strong domestic turnout as well covering topics from dreams and childhood memories to folk tales and fantastic adventures.

Participating artists are Vladan Nikolic, Aleksandar Opacic & Wostok (Serbia and Montenegro), Koco, Primoz Krasna, Olmo Omerzu, David Krancan, Mina Zabnikar (Slovenia), Juhyun Choi (France/South Korea), M.S. Bastian (Switzerland), Miroslav Nemeth (Croatia), Cristoph Feist (Germany), Capucine Latrasse (France) and Mateusz Skutnik (Poland). The dozen black & white mini albums are accompanied by the lucky 13th album in full colour and all neatly packed in a box. Suitable for Christmas presents and reading on trains!

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Caption, the UK's small press comics convention, takes place in Oxford next weekend (August 14-15th), in case you'd somehow not been aware.

Most importantly for those who just turn up on the day year after year, it's at a New Venue, Wolfson College, a couple of miles out from the centre.

Also of note, this year's gallery project is Zoetropes, details for the making of which are here.

Finally, I'm chairing my first ever panel this year on distros and review zines through the decades. So do come.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Couple of updates on Andy Konky Kru's Dachshund subsite.

Firstly, he's edited his huge linklist down to the more manageable British Comic Creators. Any notable omissions, please inform.

Secondly, his drawings from the Erlangen Comics Festival 2004 are online, and very lovely they are too. If you ever get a chance to see the A3 originals (possibly at Caption) do so.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Tony McGee's comics are like secrets you feel you can only whisper about and as he finishes his third graphic novel, Frontiers, it's about time people started shouting. Go to his True Stories Comics site, check out the previews and send him some cash.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Debra Boyask (aka Teacake) writes to the list:

It's time I was organising the second annual MCR-UK, and I need some idea of interest level. At this stage, I'd like a list of numbers, names and e-mail addresses from which I will make up a contact list for further planning.

My first MCR was in Christchurch, New Zealand in 2001 - read about it
here. We thought it was such a jolly good lark that we started having them annually. Last year I was too far away to join in, and so arranged a UK version.

Last year, we had a nice winter weekend in the Cotswold area, one outcome of which was The Seven-Faced Badger of Doom! published by Mrs. & Mr. Girlycomic at Factor Fiction Press

This year I'm proposing it will be at a mystery place in the UK (interested persons will be kept informed) and the dates will be the 26th-28th of November. I think that's well clear of the London Comics Day. If it interferes with any other major event, please let me know sooner rather than later.

You don't have to be a confident writer/drawer/rural dweller; you do need to be willing to have a go at some or all of those things - it's about participation and enjoyment, not highbrow standards.

# Posted by Pete Ashton
August 3 2004

After a few years away Dan Powell has returned to the fold with the final issue of Sin, sumptuously drawn by Chris Askham, tying up the story and setting the scene for his next project. for ordering info.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Dock writes:

Sweatdrop Studios is proud to announce their latest anthology; Sugardrops.

Sweatdrop Studios, if you're unfamiliar, is a group of almost twenty artists in the UK (mostly female, but plenty of guys too) producing original manga-style comics. We've been around for about two and a half years, and we have about seventy comics and a few anthologies, of which this is the latest and greatest - our first time with perfect binding, ISBN, all that junk.

The theme of the Sugardrops anthology is 'cute', with a whole variety of takes on the theme. This is out largest book to date, with 156 pages total, and a total of fifteen comics. The price of this book is £6.00, which we think is pretty cheap, and remember that mail order in the UK has free postage!

This book will be officially launched at Amecon (again, here in the UK), but will also be available in smaller amounts at Wildercon. After Amecon, we will start to ship out books, but if you pre-order before the conventions we will try to reserve your copy and make sure it gets sent out on (or soon after) the 23rd August. If you're ordering internationally, you will have to email for shipping costs, but it should be reasonable.

Sweatdrop, their anthology, and all their comics will be attending Wildercon and Amecon in August, and then Comic Festival London in October.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

As part of his aparent mission to bring into print all the important British cartoonists of the Escape era, Marc Bains is releasing The Dial by Chris Reynolds, a 68 page collection of strips from the Mauretania universe. The official publication date is October 6th but a copy arrived on my doorstep this week so if you can't wait get in touch via Marc's Kingly Books site.

Also of interest is Reynold's recent film, written and directed by himself, Hunters of the Sun. An edited version is online at that link.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Andrew Winter writes:

The Devilchild website has had a major redesign to tie in with the recent release of Devilchild Volume II: Freakshow. New attractions include a five-page story from Volume II ('Steven Scully's Skeleton Army'), which is free to download, and a 'shop' where you can buy both volumes of Devilchild to date.

# Posted by Pete Ashton

Rob Dunlop writes:

TOZZER 2 debuts in Previews this month (order code AUG04 2318). It's a wild series of Hollywood spoofs and outrageous satire. Movie fans with a dark (and slightly daft) sense of humour should approve.

The first issue is released in October, but it was also on sale at the Bristol comics festival in May. One person who picked it up was Glenn Carter, of SBC, who has made it the subject of his column this week.

Tozzer made his first appearance in the graphic novel TOZZER AND THE INVISIBLE LAP DANCERS, published in 2002. Since then, writer Rob Dunlop and artist Peter Lumby have been developing the sequel. “In the first book, we set up Tozzer’s world and introduced the major characters,” says Dunlop. “Now, in TOZZER 2, we’re taking the satire to a whole new level.” Co-creator Lumby adds, “We’re pulling no punches. We might upset a celebrity or two, but let’s hope they’ve got a sense of humour. Or really incompetent lawyers.”

# Posted by Pete Ashton
August 1 2004

Awakefield diary #3
John Welding
has released the first 3 issues of Awakefield Diary in pdf format on CD.
It can be ordered from John from:

36 Grosvenor Street


£3.95 (inc P+P in the UK - add additional for outside the UK)

Contains additional artwork not seen in the paper versions of 1 & 2 (that may still be available in limited quantities)

Those that recall his Goathland Diaries should be excited by the prospect of new work!

# Posted by mooncat