30 July 2011

Inherent Vice

Inherent Vice is 12 local cartoonists crammed into a studio-like fishbowl at the Melbourne NGV Centre (in the Atrium) for all to see. It's a great idea, and kudos to the person/people who dreamt this idea up. Bravo.

For five weeks, these talented folk will be working on collaborative projects as well as their own independant work. Come in and say hello to the likes of M.P.Fikaris, Pat Grant, Michael Hawkins, Rebecca Clements, Sarah Howell, Mandy Ord, Simon Hanselman and Ben Hutchings.

A nice big window looks into the NGV studio.

Mandy Ord.

Rebecca Clements.

M.P.Fikaris, busy scribbling.

Pat Grant's an awesome talent, and he showed me a new way of spot-colouring comics in Photoshop.

Pat's books are simply gorgeous.

An INSANE wall full of drawings and stuff.

Had a nice chat to the talented Ben Hutchings.

Ben's unmistakable clean style.

The open and warm studio environment is gob-smacking. It makes me wish all of those 'we should' conversations with other cartoonists amounted to something when we constantly speak of collectively forming a cartoonist collective and hiring a studio space out. You can positively FEEL the warm creative glow from this space as a bunch of like-minded creatives put their heads down and get work done. It's definitely something we have to have PERMANENTLY here in Melbourne.

Anyway, pop down (it's FREE) and have a look at some of the BEST cartoonists working in Melbourne today. Watch them doodle, have a chat, and buy a do-hicky from them. They'll probably draw a little something on it for you as well!

M P Fikaris, Pat Grant, Michael Hawkins, Rebecca Clements, Sarah Howell, Mandy Ord, Simon Hanselman and Ben Hutchings
NGV Studio, the Atrium, Federation Square, Melbourne 3000
-16th July - 14th August 2011
Cost: FREE, nothin, nada, zip, zinch.

I'll be updating this post each time I pop into NGV again (before this great event is over)... you should too!



25 July 2011

freshly inked

Penciling the page.

The inked page.

Years ago when I was trying to find out what worked for me, I remember sweating to get every line inked perfectly. I'd imagine the critiques of professionals out there eyeing my published work under a magnifying glass.

It was only when I started to listen to 'what I liked' (and to hell with all the formal pidgeon-holed views), that I began to see improvement in my work. I started to discover a style that I was happy to improve upon, and as a consequence, I really started to enjoy making my comics more and more.

Close up of the inked page.


14 July 2011

Comics jam

Brendan Halyday contacted a few of us local comic illustrators over to his place on Wednesday night for a last-minute drawing night.

Brendan Halyday.

Henry Pop.

Matt Emery.

It was a lot of fun. We just sat around and talked comics while working on our own pages. The time just flew, and before you knew it, we'd all got a lot of work done. Sometimes these get-togethers are a great opportunity to get some comics done (without much effort) than you otherwise might on your own. Especially when you're in a rut. Matt, especially, commented on how productive he'd been that night.

I even finished inking another page of OXYGEN (above).

NOTE: You can probably see the rough sketches that I used to layout this page in the previous post.


07 July 2011


This is the stage just before I pencil the artboard. I flesh out sketches on scrap paper, trying to work out the best poses and camera angles so they'll sit 'just right' on the page. That way I'm not rubbing out on my artboard.


05 July 2011

Girlfriends past

I spent the day penciling, then inking this fun little number for a client...


03 July 2011

Comics Meetup [02.07.11]

Jesus. It's July already!? Time flies when you're busy.

I left home a little earlier yesterday morning so I could drop into ALL STAR COMICS (410 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne 3000) to see if my publisher's delivery of my DIGESTED series had arrived on their shelves. As the elevator doors open to the first floor, Troy greets me and says that the shipment did come in last week, but that they've virtually all sold out (only one copy of #4 left). Good news and bad. Good news that they're selling (As Larry Boxshall used to say, like 'hotcakes'), and bad news that I didn't bring any fresh copies of DIGESTED to restock the shelves. Mental note for next time. Oh well... I did, however, manage to drop off some copies of my old self-published WITHHELD novella that I had in my bag, and made tracks for this month's meet.

What can I say about our monthly Melbourne comic meetups... I seem to voice the same praise and platitudes on this blog each and every post, but I can't help it.

It was already busy when I arrived.

Before long it was fairly crowded. Here's one side of the bar...

... and the other side... I think our mob took up about 80% of the place.

One of Colin Wilson's graphic novels, BULLET TO THE HEAD, is being made into a hollywood movie (Starring Sylvester Stallone)... Colin is checking the internet to make sure his name is on the credits :)

Larry Boxshall from NonCanonical made his first comic-meet!

Darren Close, Colin Wilson, and David Blumenstein.

There were a lot of scribblers chatting and having a good time.

Me, hogging Trev Wood's spotlight.

James Andre

Colin Wilson and Tristian Jones

Larry Boxshall and David Blumenstein.

Was it a good meetup, Brendan? You bet.