Steve from the always excellent Popstrip was kind enough to ask me to do a guest comic. I had so much fun doing it that I got a bit carried away and ending up doing three – you can read them here, here & here. He is also on the lookout for more guest strips, so get in touch with him if you fancy having a crack at one (or three). Now if I can just get around to doing some comics for my own website…
Hourly Comic Day was instigated by John Campbell nearly ten years ago and has grown into something of an institution. The idea is that you draw a quick comic detailing your day every hour and post them online. Sounds simple but it’s strangely fascinating. I’ve wanted to do it for quite a while now, but am usually working. However, I happened to have a day off this year (yeah for the triple dip recession) and managed to plunge in. I only managed eight comics, so it’s not quite the full hourly comic experience, but it’ll do for a first attempt. My daughter even joined in with one and, naturally, hers is the best, so I’ve saved it till last.
My other webcomic, Milton’s Life, turned two years old at the weekend and to celebrate, I’m giving away free (yes free) drawings of Milton with any purchase over £2/$3. So, if you make a purchase, just email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) with what you’d like to see Milton doing. Please bear in mind the limits of my artistic ability. If you ask for a picture of Milton riding a surfing velociraptor whilst having a light sabre fight with Darth Maul, it’ll probably end up looking a bit shit.
Drawings will be done on A5 paper in B&W.
If you’ve going to be in the vicinity of Bradford this weekend, then pop along to Hand Made where I’ll be taking part in the Loosely Bound Zine Extravaganza. I’ll be selling copies of my DJ Bogtrotter and Milton’s Life collections and maybe even doing some more hand drawn stickers.
The Zine Extravaganza is part of the launch of Fabric’s brand new ‘Hand Made in Bradford’ arts space, and also coincides with the official launch of Bradford City Park just across the road from the space, with lots of events happening. There are more than 25 stallholders taking part so the event promises to be an exciting one.
A full list of the stall holders is available here.
The event is from 10am till 4pm. The address is
Hand Made in Bradford (the old Zavvi shop)
1 Tyrell Street
Hey everybody – notice the new link in the menubar? Yes, that’s right, I’ve now got a shop, so you can pay to have like real paper copies of all the stuff that I give you for free. I know you’re all just itching to shower me with your hard-earned cash. If you’re a UK resident, you can go to this shop (which is hosted on my other webcomic Milton’s Life) and if you’re from anywhere else, you should head to this shop. And if you’re a UK resident and you want to buy stuff not just for yourself but as Xmas presents for all your friends, then as long as I get your order in by Thurs 15th (yes, this Thursday), then I’ll get Santa to drop it off. If you’re from anywhere else and you want stuff for Xmas, sorry, but I screwed up and didn’t get the shop ready in time. You could just buy some really, really early presents for 2012 though. Happy browsing shoppers!
Have I mentioned that I’m regularly contributing to a new webcomic? It’s called Short Attention Span and consists of single panel gags. It’s a group webcomic and there’s six of us at the moment, looking to knock out one cartoon a week – Asher, Ben, Colm, Max, Steve and me. But we are always looking for other comics, so if you want to do a guest comic, just head over to our guest page and check it out. All you have to do is draw a comic (420 X 420px) and email it in.
Blim-ey. I didn’t think that would be quite that hard, but I managed it. I would like to thank everybody who donated and offered encouragement via Twitter, Facebook and the like. I managed to reach my target of £250 for the MS Society and the page is still open for donations at http://www.justgiving.com/Noel-Curry, so let’s see what we can get the final figure to. Also, I think I should make it clear that my challenge to myself was to draw 100 comics in a day and to write as many of them as I could on that day, but I did allow myself to use my ‘half-formed-ideas’ file as support, as trying to come up with 100 new ideas whilst drawing would have poll-axed me completely. (I maybe be crazy, but I’m not completely insane). Here are the results (my favorites are 4, 12, 27, 38, 48, 53, 61, 71-75 & 92 ):
In 2009 I managed to draw 100 bad comics as part of 24 Hour Comics Day. I wanted to do the same in 2010, but life got in the way and I didn’t manage it. Well, I’ve decided not to wait for the next 24 Hour Comics Day and I’m just to do it again anyway. The date I’ve chosen is Saturday 9th April and as an added bonus, I’m going to try and raise some money for charity whilst doing it. There’s a Just Giving Page where you can pledge some money to The MS Society in recognition of my (hopefully) sterling efforts. And, if you sponsor me for £3 or more (about $5), you get to pick a topic for me to draw a cartoon about. Neat huh? I’ll be posting the results to Twitter as I go (so you can follow me if you want to see them on the day) and then I post them all to the site later. Please tell all your friends.
My mate Warren (who’s an architect by day) sent me the first page of a comic he’s been working called ‘Mucho Macho Hombre’. It looks rather marvellous and I’ve been immediately intrigued by it. He says that he may just email pages out to friends as and when he completes them, but I’m going to do my best to persuade him to stick them somewhere on the internet, If he does so, I’ll be sure to let you all know where you can find them.
To have a closer look, just click on the image.
I’ve decided that’s it’s a bit foolish of me to divide my time between two webcomics (yeah, I have another one. Didn’t you know? It’s called Milton’s Life). Even though this one is getting a lot more traffic, I’m going to put it into almost complete retirement and concentrate my energies on Milton and his many, many worries. I enjoy the freedom that DJ Bogtrotter gives me, but I feel that my jokes end up being so varied, that I’m not really building any momentum and, after over two years, I still have no idea what a Bogtrotter type of comic would be. Milton, on the other hand, has a definite style, mood and, I think, potential to grow and hopefully become better and better, as long as I stick at it.
But, although most of my drawing time will be spent trying to produce 2-3 strips a week for Milton, I can’t abandon DJ Bogtrotter altogether and will try to post something here at least once a month. It might be hastily drawn and even more random than usual, but, like Father Jack yelling in the corner, Bogtrotter will bark out some obscenities every once in a while.
There will be regular updates for a few more weeks, and then in April I’m going to relaunch Milton’s Life (I’ll need some guest strips for that by the way, if you fancy doing one, just send it in) and I going to do the 100 Bad Comics Challenge again, as a final flourish before the site lapses into it’s more sporadic update schedule.
I intend to attend my very first convention later this year – Leeds very own Thought Bubble, so I will get a Bogtrotter collection together for that. Hope you can come along and say hello, if you’re in the area.
Just a couple of things I’ve been meaning to post for ages (but keep forgetting to).
First up, last May I gave a talk at a Leeds event call Bettakultcha. These events are for people to talk about their passions. You’re given five minutes to talk over twenty slides. Each slide is on screen for exactly fifteen seconds and when the slides stop, the talk is over. Sounds easy eh? My talk was about the wonderful world of webcomics. Was your webcomic mentioned? Erm… probably not, but have a look anyway, just in case.
Secondly, many people think that if you publish a popular collection of your comics or if your website gets hundreds of thousand of hits a day, then you’ve arrived in webcomics. But the really clued up people know that you haven’t really made it until an obscure Brazilian DJ asks if he can use a comic of yours to illustrate one of his tracks online. Guess what? An obscure Brazilian DJ asked if he could use a comic of mine to illustrate one of his tracks online. Have a listen to “Love Is The Answer” by DJ Chrizz which, unsurprisingly, uses my comic Love Is The Answer to illustrate it. Also, unsurprisingly, he’s chosen to crop off the punchline as it undercuts the whole feeling of the track – I guessed that he would do this and really don’t mind. I’m just tickled that one of my drawings is being used in conjunction with some banging, ol’ school techno on the other side of the world.
Wishing you all a very Merry Xmas (if that’s your sort of thing). A big thankyou to anyone who’s read, commented and shared the site. I’m having a little festive break and DJ Bogtrotter will return in the New Year. In the meantime, here’s a couple of drawings I did for this week’s #tuesdaysketch.
This is woefully out of date, but I said I would blog about my UK Webcomix Thing, so here’s what I can remember from my visit back in March.
I was going to recommend the Ronald Searle exhibition at the Cartoon Museum that I managed to take in before going to the “Thing”, but unfortunately it finished on July 4th. You’ll just have to trust me on this one, but it was dazzling. If you ever get a chance you see a range off his stuff, grab it. There’s so much more to his work than the St Trinian’s pictures that made him famous (and which he drew for only a couple of years). Superb war reportage, spot on character studies, funny editorial cartoons (yes, funny) and much more.
And then it was off to the main event.
At Queen Mary University near Mile End, London, there were gathered most of the major UK webcomics people and quite a few minor ones too. Having been dabbling in webcomics for over a year now, it was encouraging to see such a vibrant scene and also delightful to finally meet some of the many artists with whom I’d only ever been in touch with via the internet. There was a great range of inventive, kooky and funny comics on display. I got to meet Pete (who, with Jules Rivera, had interviewed me for the podcast Pond to Pond) from Hard Graft (a fast-paced action-packed comic set in Afghanistan) and Steve from Dark Places (a horror-fantasy-adventure webcomic set at the end of civilisation). Representing the sunnier end of the market, I got to meet Luke Surl who knocks out a regular dose of spot on puns and general whimsy. I was once so taken with one of his cartoons that I made a reply. Also there were Amy Letts from the fantasy webcomic Epic Fail and Philippa Rice of My Cardboard Life with another of her gorgeous diaramas.
There was also John Allison of Bad Machinery, along with Marc Ellerby, Adam Caldwell and many others. There was a genuine sense of camaraderie about the place. The webcomics scene is no goldmine and most of the people in it have other fulltime jobs, but I was impressed by the amount of enthusiasm and dedication towards the artform that was coursing through the room. Unfortunately, due to staffing issues, the planned panel discussions were cancelled. So, despite having the cream of the UK webcomics scene in one room, not one word was uttered in public about the current state of play for this emerging field or where things might be heading. This was a real missed opportunity and has been compounded by the announcement that there won’t be a UK Webcomix event next year. To quote from the website: “There will be no more Things as the hall is no longer available for hire and my brain is fried.” Conventions seem to happen every weekend in the states, but the UK webcomics scene seems a little more fragile and this was the only event (that I’m aware of) that was devoted exclusively to them. It would be a real loss if there was no webcomics event for 2011.
Anyone fancy picking up the torch?
There’s a website that’s been knocking about for a while and I keeping forgetting to mention that I’m on it. It’s called Comics Roulette and it’s a pretty nifty way to discover new webcomics. Basically, the site throws up a random cartoon from one of the many webcomics that have joined in. Click next and you get another random comic. If you find something you like, you can click on the comic to visit that particular webcomic and see some more. And if you click often enough, you’re bound to find something you might recognise from this website. Check it out.
Having seen a few reactions to last week’s, I realise that I’ve not been clear enough, so I’ve to redrawn this one and posted it again. You can see it here. If you don’t get it now, it just means that you don’t have a filthy mind and you can congratulate yourself on not being a filthy reprobate.
“It’s pretty simple. Every comic starts with a random line of dialogue or some little idea for the first panel. Beyond that, we have no idea where it’s all gonna end up. Some comics take more panels than others but once they are funny, we stop drawing and post it!
On weekends, you’ll hopefully see guest posts from other webcomicers! As long as we have the submissions, we will be posting one every weekend! A little treat for everyone.”
And guess what? It’s me who’s on it this weekend. And you can see what I DUIF’d (cool acronym, it’s bound to catch on) right here.
So if you have a webcomic, get one in there and you could be the next DUIFer (see, I told you it would catch on).