Friday, 30 May 2014
Thursday, 29 May 2014
Tuesday, 27 May 2014
Mike's work caught my eye last year with the wonderful 'Seasons'. So I was over the moon to hear he was putting out a new webcomic.
'The final days of a painter, a poet and a writer.'
'Last Days of Nobodies' deals with the final days of Vincent van Gogh, Emily Dickinson and Franz Kafka. The series proclaims to be interested in great talent both when they were unheralded and also closing in on their last days. Mike will be experimenting with the comics form and showing how art and comics intersect with poetry.
If his previous work is anything to go by this should be full of artistic individuality and sequential elegance. Mike is never overly earnest and I expect this to be full of character eccentricities and beautiful designs. Like no other artist out there Mike strikes out on his own path. His storytelling is both fresh and unorthodox.
'Im nobody, who are you? Are you nobody too?' - Emily Dickinson.
This project is due to launch on Wednesday 28th May, 2014 and is bound to be cracking. It will update every other Wednesday.
I urge you not to miss the bus on this one. It has awards written all over it - and rightly so.
As well as the tumblr above you can find Mike at his website www.mikemedaglia.com or follow him on Twitter @mikemedaglia
You can read my review of his book 'Seasons' here http://beardrock.com/eyebrow-art/comics/seasons and buy copies through his website or some London comic shops. (I think GOSH! and Orbital Comics still have copies).
Have a read of my other comics reviews on here or at www.beardrock.com
You can also follow my ramblings on Twitter @Ezohyez
Thanks for reading.
Monday, 26 May 2014
I just popped into a European comics shop (I can't say in which country since they only have one shop here and it would give it away).
Me - 'Hi.'
Counter staff - 'Hello...... can I help you?'
Me - 'Just browsing, but thanks.'
Me - 'Do you have (Names Specific Comic) issue 2?'
Counter Staff - 'No.'
Me - 'OK thanks.'
Counter Staff - (a little too shouty) 'ANNUAL?'
Me - 'No it's issue 2 from (names comic company)?'
Counter staff - 'No'. (Also does classic wave of hand and 'pffft' noise).
At this point I decided that I would exit. Being classily English I know know that I have to buy something before making an exit.
I grabbed a Classic Moon Knight hardback collection. (No price shown).
Me - 'Excuse me. How much is this?'
Counter staff - 'Show me.' (She then snatches the book. All the while I am thinking that if it's damaged I don't want it).
She looks it up and down and I realise that comics isn't her expertise.
Counter staff - 'Is cheap. My son would know'.
Me - 'Oh. OK. thanks (why am I thanking her?) I'll continue looking.'
To be fair the shop was pretty well stocked. It was a bit of a jumble sale so I had a dig around. Only the action figures were priced.
Counter staff - (shouted down the length of the shop) 'You like comic conventions?'
Me - 'Yes I do.'
Counter staff - 'we have one here. Many stars from Hollywood!'
Me - 'oh. I think I've seen a flyer for that in a shop in London!'
Counter Staff - 'No.'
(Right. That caught me off guard. I was just beginning to think this was turning a corner).
Me - 'Oh I thought you had one at the end of the year, November?'
Counter Staff - 'Yes.'
Me - 'Oh OK.'
Counter Staff - 'They edged my son out. This is a better one. Many Hollywood stars and famous cars.'
(At this point she pointed at a Thor Pez dispenser on the counter???)
Me - (feigning interest and wanting to leave) 'Sounds interesting'.
Counter Staff - 'It is.'
(I then was handed a flyer that had been cut out with scissors and didn't really have any details on it).
Me - 'I shall have a look at this, thank-you.'
(I then paid for the book and the lady disappeared to get change for at least five minutes. Meanwhile I actually wondered if this was a comics version of Hostel?)
Counter Staff - 'you're coming?'
(Seemed a bit pushy - I gotta leave).
Me - 'I'll definitely think about it.' (a lie).
Counter Staff - 'Don't go to that other one.'
Me - 'Er. OK.'
Counter Staff - 'Promise?'
Me - (feeling bullied) 'I won't.'
Counter Staff - (again a little too loud and with another wave of the hand) 'This one better. That one run by liars.'
I then left and as I walked out this lady followed me and told how the noise of road works in the road is bad for business.
Not really the only thing?
Saturday, 24 May 2014
'Days' (Released 9th June 2014).
Written and drawn by Simon Moreton. - www.smoo-comics.com
Published by Avery Hill Publishing - www.averyhillpublishing.com
The mighty folks at Avery Hill Publishing are about to release a collection of the work of Simon Moreton.
Simon is a real stand out talent in British Comics. His work is personal and experimental. He makes amazing use of the autobiographical storytelling format that combines the best of European, American and Japanese comics. He makes use of melancholy, real life pacing and has a wonderful sense of space. His panels are often beautifully framed and it's great to see it all collected in one volume.
This collection covers the creators output between 2011 and 2012. The content mostly comes from three out of print issues of 'Smoo' (his small press project) but also includes work from difficult to find anthologies as well as all new art and text pieces.
Simon comes from Bristol in the UK and I urge you to seek out his work. It's all about telling stories and feeling resonance - he does this triumphantly. Beautiful, painful and brave it's a gorgeous package from Avery Hill who are quietly taking over the world.
Their online shop is found at www.averyhillpublishing.bigcartel.comics
Simon can be found on Twitter @smoo_comics
Avery Hill likewise can be found @averyhillpubl
Have a read of my reviews on here or at the Comics section of www.beardrock.com
I can be found on Twitter @Ezohyez (so come say hi).
Friday, 23 May 2014
Thursday, 22 May 2014
Friday, 16 May 2014
Saturday, 10 May 2014
I have really been enjoying East of West by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragota (from Image Comics).
It's a combination of Post Apocalyptic, Old School Western and William Blake. Some of the writing is astoundingly good.
I had quite a lot of waiting about to do at work yesterday and was in a place that had no phone or wi-fi signal so over lunch I treated myself to the second volume (I am reading it in trade - yeah I know!)
Whilst reading I noticed some camera equipment that was spinning around in my little room of it's own accord. Then I noticed this.
Everything comes back to comics!
Tuesday, 6 May 2014
I occasionally dip into the collector market and splurge on the variant cover, action figure and bookplate. But what I have been buying less and less often is the signed copy. They rarely cost more and some can be easily picked up at the bigger stores.
This is the reason I stopped. Summed up in one image.
What the fuck is that!?
Surely you can't call that signed.
It's about three lines (at the most) and an exclamation mark.
Naming no names but there is a lot of this going on. Just take five seconds more please?
Monday, 5 May 2014
I met Mr Ayers at a convention in New York in the mid 2000s and he was friendly, full of energy and talked my head off about comics. He was one of those creators who would give you his time and for that I am eternally grateful.
He will be missed.
Sunday, 4 May 2014
Yeasterday was Free Comic Book Day 2014 and was the biggest one so far.
I started the day at my local comic book store Chaos City Comics in St Albans, Herts, UK. It's a pretty small shop and I was kindly let in by the owner Derek ahead of the crowd to help out with handing out bags and comics.
Bravely assisting James and Luke we fought the crowds like we were in The Battle of New York and it was great to see a lot of parents who were there for the first time and brought their kids in to get free comics. Most people were pretty cool and didn't take too many books and there was a lot of chatting about contents and stories.
I personally picked up some great FCBD issues. Probably top of the heap was the offering from Archaia a (once again) superb hardback anthology that features 'Mouse Guard' and some great 'Farscape' pages by the excellent Ramon Perez!
I then jumped on a train into Central London and headed to the 'Comics Unmasked' event that opened this week at the British Library. This is a big deal for both comics and the venue and as soon as you exit St Pancras you are presented with images and posters leading you to the exhibition. The character reflects a seedy area and also seems to be suggesting that 'The Pro' could become a reality?
Once inside. The exhibition itself is a bit of a mixed bag. Organised by Paul Gravat (more from him later) it is littered with 'cool' comic pages, art, videos, scripts and lots of these guys!
It was also the first event at The British Library to have a restrictive PG-16 certificate.
Having been to a lot of Comica events run by Paul over the years (and being a pretty regular volunteer) it did seem a bit like I was seeing 'the same old thing.' There were some nice surprises in the mix and an understandable concentration on the medium's history. I suppose there are people out there who haven't seen a page from Watchmen next to a script or some pages from 2000AD?
My real grumpy side did come out however with the section on super heroes. Say what you like about this side of the industry but you'll have to admit that this facet is both popular and often extremely interesting (Marshall Law anyone?) This section was made up like you were walking into a child's bedroom (complete with Doctor Who (?) figures circa 2009). In this mock up bedroom was a TV playing 'Kick Ass'. I get the counterpoint, I just found it a little heavy handed?
But over all it was fun and I enjoyed seeing such a well organised and popular even that centred around our hobby. (Oh and I bought a badge but avoided the'Biff' and 'Pow' fridge magnets).
I then wandered through town and popped into The Forbidden Planet in Shaftsbury Avenue who were handing out pretty generous bags of free comics!
I then headed to Orbital Comics and met with the Comics Club regulars Marc Laming, Alex Martin, Matt Harrower, Christian Wildgoose and Lara Margarida. We popped into Gosh! Comics in London's seedy Soho and then headed off for a bite to eat (after satisfying my Bronze Age cravings with some MOKF, Doctor Strange and Charlton Comics).
Then it was time for The Orbiting Pod. The fine folks at Orbital Comics were recording their live 150th episode full of laughs, guests (including the aforementioned Paul Gravat), music, poetry and beers galore.
Organised by Robin Harman, Chris Thompson and Adam Sheriden it was a master class in organisation and a laugh from beginning to end. This episode should be up and available to listen to in a week. I even got to ask a question!
After a good two and a half hours recording we all headed to the pub and after laughing until I got a sore throat we all headed off and got the last train home.
Roll on next year!