Saturday, June 23, 2012

More Solitary Madness

Here is another panel from the short comic Solitary that I am drawing, written by Dale Maccanti. I've left the skyline of both these images empty, as this comic is intended to be coloured and it will probably look better if the colourist adds the sky. It's a pretty detailed line drawing, click on the pic for a larger version of the image.

Below is the finished version of a panel from page 3 of solitary that i posted a few days ago. I am pretty happy with how this comic is looking, should be good.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Colouring (and inkwash) experiments

To warm up for the 24 hour comic challenge I spent a bit of time experimenting with creating tonal black and white artwork using washes and then using white paint pens and gel pens to create white highlights on them. And doing this QUICKLY. Could also be because I have been flipping through some Creepy archives with lots of inkwash comics and reading Ben Templesmith's new book too. Its called Choker and it has probably his best comic art yet. I then digitally coloured a couple, using textures ala Templesmith. Colouring is not my strong suit, so please be kind, but i think they turned out ok. What do you reckon?

This image is pretty small, you can't really see any of the detail in it. Click on it to see a larger version. :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Solitary page 3 inks preview panel (formerly a 24 hour comic)

Ok so, i've finally gotten onto finishing the inks for the 24 hour comic story Dale Maccanti wrote for me called solitary. Below are inks for panel 2 of page 3. thought you might like a look...


When I sell a comic or zine from my etsy store, time permitting, I try and do a quick sketch for the customer. I knocked this one out relatively quickly, but still, it turned out ok, if you can forgive a bit of wonky anatomy :) thought you might be interested in seeing this

Monday, June 11, 2012

24 hour comic crazy

Well, for the first time ever i had a serious crack at the 24 hour comic challenge. ( It's this crazy thing where you try and write and draw a 24 page comic in 24 hours. I did it at a 24 hour event hosted my Melbournes only open comic studio, Squishface Studios. I was working with a pool of 4 writers, (Dale Maccanti, Jason Franks, Matt Nicholls and Georgia Quinn) who each wrote one short story for the project. Thanks to all of them for helping out and to dale for editing a couple of the stories to boot. I brought in a pool of writers so I could concentrate on drawing, although it did work out that i spend a lot of the first 2-4 hours talking through ideas with the writers, but i started drawing in the third hour of the challenge.

I wanted to do a EC and Creepy Mag inspired horror/sci-fi/crime anthology in the spirit of SHOCK SuspenStories. Well, i spent the first few hours talking through ideas with writers, the next 20 hours drawing, and the most i could manage was to pencil 7 pages and ink 2 pages.

I made a few rookie mistakes, one was drawing at A3 size when most of the other artists at the studio were drawing at the (smaller) A4 or (much smaller) A5 size. Drawing at A3 was not a good idea -- although it meant the 2 pages i finished will look pretty good when printed at standard comic size. It also showed my that i could never complete this challenge drawing in my 'realistic' style. If i want to try again, i will have to draw in my 'cartoon' style, as i can draw much faster in that style.

So here it is – the seven page story 'Solitary' drawn by me, written by Dale Maccanti. (Thanks Bro!) As always, click on each image for a larger version.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

And you thought the last one was gruesome...

Life just keeps getting busier and busier, but the (zombie) show must go on! Here is the latest gruesome ghoul of a zombie from the (self-titled) master of zombification Brendan Halyday. How horrific!

If you'd like to order one, email Brendan.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Zombie Crazy!!

As many of you reading this already know, I do portraits of people with a twist – I draw them turned into zombies. My favourite type of zombified portrait clients are the ones who say 'Do something as messed up as possible'. I usually limit the amount of disfigurement i draw in the zombifiying process so the client is still clearly recognisable in the drawing. But when people tell me to cut loose, i worry a little less about doing a perfect likeness and focus on doing a kick ass drawing. I'm pretty happy with this one, what do you reckon?

Friday, May 4, 2012

My EC Comics obsession

My interest with golden and early silver age comics has been growing more and more lately. Certainly I have been checking out Jack Kirby's massive volume of work from the 40s through the 70s. But it is the golden age of  EC Comics (from 1950-1955) that have most firmly grabbed my interest. And my interest has been growing to the point of obsession lately.

But there's a problem.

A sizeable part line of EC Comics line has recently been re-released as a line of Deluxe oversize hardcovers printed full colour on thick glossy paper. Sounds great, right? Wrong!

These recently re-released volumes feature the stories re-coloured – and badly at that. The colouring of these new volumes is supposed to faithfully reflect the printing of the originals, but the originals were printed on newsprint on old, outdated presses, and the colours have a cool halftone effect. But with the new editions the thick glossy paper its printed on just amplifies the garish nature of the colouring. In short – for me – it just ruins the art. Which is the very reason I'm interested in EC to begin with.

An aside - The desire to see comics in black and white is another thing i am preferring more and more lately. Particularly older comics. Steve Ditko never looked as good as he does in black and white. But its more than that – i like seeing an artist who can make a black and white drawing look complete on its own, unlike a lot of colour comics today that look boring when not coloured.

I decided that if I have to read them in colour, I want it to be the original colours, on cheap crappy newsprint, just like the originals. I was able to find a small smatting of them at Evil Empire Comics, and then a big stash of them at Collectors Edge in Moonee Ponds (its a great comic shop, well worth the trek out to Moonee Ponds).

But even that wasn't enough. I wanted to see these comics in glorious black and white, as large as possible. I had to do a bit of hunting around to find out IF there were any B&W printings – which there were thanks to Phil from Evil Empire Comics shop.

So they exist.

But they are not easy to get. I turned to to find some, and discovered there was a retailer here in Melbourne that had a four-volume oversize hardcover slipcase set reproductions of the entire run of Weird Fantasy in glorious black and white.

So I went for a trip out to Camberwell and picked up a hefty (in weight and pricetag) four volume hardcover books (with slipcase!) representing the entire run of EC's Wierd Fantasy comics series.

Now that i have these, i want more, luckily Fantagraphics are starting a series reprinting old EC comics in B&W hardcovers, focusing on one artist per volume.

Free Comic Day appearance at All Star Comics Melbourne

Its FREE COMIC BOOK DAY tomorrow (Sat 5 May), and I'll be at All Star Comics Melbourne (level 1, 410 Lonsdale st, Melbourne) doing free sketches from 11am till Midday. Yes, thats tomorrow, Saturday the 5th of March.

Come on down to pick up some rad FREE COMICS courtesy of All Star Comics and free sketches from a whole host of uber talented folk (Andy Issac, Matt Emery, Daz Close, Matt Dunn, Tristan Jones and many more talented folk). There is more info and a schedule HERE.

Bear in mind there is an sketch artist roster and each artist will be drawing for one hour only, so make sure you check the timetable and get there early to get a sketch!

I'll also be selling some of my own comics there and plan to offer packs collecting all of my published work at a special (but not free) price!

For more info on FCBD, click this link:

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

todays zombification

I have used my day off work yesterday and today to catch up on some of the zombified commisions that have been piling up. I was on a roll yesterday and managed to pencil several (of varying sizes) yesterday and have spent most of the day today inking a couple of them. My pencils were more like breakdowns (or roughs) and a lot of the mutilation, and the rendering gets done in the inks stage.  Here is a the black and white linework for one I was working on earlier today. It will be getting a red and gray wash before its done.

You can see more of my zombified portraits at or by trawling through old posts on this blog.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

I've been drawing comics too...

Its been a while since i have had a chance to work on the comic i am drawing for Decay Magazine. But things are changing and comics are finally getting a bit more time on the drawing board. I thought i'd post a little preview, just to hep you hanging. This one should be a cracker! Click on the image below to see a higher resolution version of the drawing.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What a happy (zombie) family!

Don'cha just love a good family portrait?

So do I. Especially when i get to draw them with rotting flesh, bite marks and torn clothing. Zombie Portraits are back, and this is just the beginning!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Melbourne's best kept (comic book shop) secret

It's kind of sad that one of my favourite comic shops in Melbourne is one that many comic fans don't know about, or have never been to. Evil Empire Comics in Coburg (in Melbourne's northern suburbs) is a great place to go when you are looking for a hard-to-find graphic novel or comic. They have an insane amount of back issues (rivaled perhaps only by Alternate Worlds for Melbourne-based stores) and there are many bargains waiting to be found on their shelves and in their longboxes.

On a recent visit the owner asked me to help out designing a colour flier. The front of the flier is a photoshoped cover of an old wonder woman comic (with all the original titles etc laboriously removed in Photoshop), the back cover was designed to suit the 50's aesthetic of the cover, with a quick (done in 15mins) drawing of Hulk on the back, from direction from the shop owner. I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out, and I urge you all to head down to Evil Empire Comics, it really is a great place to shop. You can find it at 36 Sydney Rd Coburg, or call on 9386 6665. Do yourself a favor and pop in sometime soon.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Mans best friend gets savage! Zombie Savage!!

Even zombies need a friend. And what better friend than a zombified dog? This is my latest zombified illustration, and a bit of a break from the norm at that. Enjoyed doing this, but found it a bit stressful too. It certainly stretched me a bit, but i am pleased with the outcome.

Friday, March 2, 2012

New works!

Okay, so i've been a bit absent from the blogging landscape recently. Its not because I haven't been doing things, its been because i have been doing SO many things that communicating with friends and fans has fallen by the wayside.

I spent most of January (and a bit of december last year too) drawing a 6 page crime comic for Black House Comics Criminal Element anthology. Here is a sample page (click on the thumbnail for a larger picture :

The book is was launched at the Big Arse Comic Launch no. 2, which was a big success.

I spent the rest of January and most of February doing art direction, graphic design and production work on 3 graphic novels (Bruce Mutards Strip Show, Tim Molloys It Shines and Shakes and Laughs, Scarlette Bachini's Zombolette) for Milk Shadow Books. All of these books are now available to buy on the MSB website. I am working on a couple of other graphic novels for MSB, will post more details when i am allowed to talk about them :)

In the midst of this i have been working on Zombified Commissions as well.

And did I mention that I got married last weekend? Life has been busy :) I hope to return to the blogosphere more regularly from hereon in.