Issue 3, Page 2

September 22, 2013

Oh my that was a shameful hiatus…


I’ll spare you the BS; it’s been 2 months or so since I posted anything and some very good and very bad things have been going in my life simultaneously, the common factor being that both ends of the spectrum pulled me away from working on Branch seriously again until just recently. I very nearly held off on posting this so I could think up a more witty excuse but it seems important that I get things moving again ASAP.

Putting aside the page’s lost-at-sea-suffered-amnesia-wife-remarried level of MIA downtime I’m actually quite happy with how it turned out; the perspective and composition are quite unlike most of its predecessors making it a distinct and hopefully standout jump into more actiony stuff. The colour work and use of SFX could perhaps be a little tighter but considering how daunting I found this one it didn’t turn out half bad.

Now the real trick, to actually get back to regular updates again…

Issue 3, Page 1 (+ Bonus Ranting!)

July 25, 2013

BranchISSUE3page1jWell, here’s to a solid start for Issue 3 but then why wouldn’t it be after so bleeding long?

Seriously; I know I’m terrible for making excuses but this has not been a good month for me. Right from the start I’d decided to force out regular releases no matter what and give my working process the nitro-boost it oh so desperately needs. For a plethora of reasons, that simply never happened. I feel like I owe answers as to why this is being held up so much, but I really don’t want to degenerate into self-indulgent ‘why me?’ whining either; plenty of people I know do comics as an aside from their day job and still manage to keep up a decent production rate, so that excuse really won’t fly.

Still, I like to be honest about my thoughts and feelings so getting to the point I have to admit I’ve been in something of a dark place lately. There have been plenty of commitments and set backs along the way, but it’s my motivation that’s really taken a beating these past few weeks.

Indulgent as it may sound I draw as an outlet first and foremost, there isn’t a huge amount I can claim to love about my life but creating comics, breathing life into a story that I can claim is truly mine gives me a glow inside that almost nothing else can. Whether what I create is any good is up for debate and perhaps on some level this will all sound pretty damn selfish, but considering how submissively I live the rest of my life, how often I get shoehorned into things I don’t want to do, am told I can’t do things or am told I’ve failed or missed the mark it seems a small thing to ask.

It’s maddening that I keep missing my own deadlines, but that may well be the root of the problem; they are my deadlines and mine alone. When a work related e-mail lands in my inbox, when someone asks me a favour, when an argument kicks off the pad closes, the pens go away, the file is shut and another day’s delay is slotted onto my release schedule.

It hurts not just because I want to finish what I start and see the story through to the end, but also because this is the only way I feel I can express myself without compromise. Something that is entirely me and not what someone else wants me to be, wants me to do, or wants to hear.

Sure, I want people to like what I make – I doubt many people can claim otherwise – I welcome constructive criticism and hopefully by meeting my own standards I can meet some of my readers’. Regardless the top of the agenda remains the same; I just need to get more done in less time. Maybe I need to say ‘no’ to more things, perhaps I need to reign in my OCD tendencies some, one way or another I know it can be done. A page a week, at least.

I need to make it happen and I need to make it happen soon.


Issue 3 Cover + MCM London ComicCon (October)

June 26, 2013

It’s the boys in blue!


Ahem, that is to say that with the appearance of a notable police lieutenant in this issue it seemed fitting to adopt a bluish tone for my cover this time around.

This one proved rather tricky for a number of reasons; excluding cleanup, colour and text – and unlike its predecessors – I drew it up by traditional means rather than digital, naturally resulting in much head banging – not the rock ‘n’ roll kind – and some copious use of Tipp-Ex along the way. I also learned what a potential nightmare drawing someone holding a submachine gun can be and do not get me started on that bloody monorail train.

Still for the most part it seems like the ambition paid off, the finished composition is suitably striking and different to the previous covers while staying within the same stylistic boundaries. Finishing, annoyingly I realised Scratch and Curt aren’t casting a shadow on the floor thanks to neglecting it in my original draft where their feet go out of frame, but hopefully it’s not too jarring being disguised by the colour-contrast between subjects and backgrounds. If anyone asks I’ll just say there’s a high-power directional spotlight behind them…

Anyhow, as usual I’ve been way too quiet for way too long but my work gears have been a-turning and all being well I should be posting a stream of exciting new stuff in the more immediate future – or rather I’d better because I recently confirmed I’ll be on a table at the London MCM Comic Con again this October! Can’t say I’ve attended two cons in a year before and naturally I went through a signature phase of nail gnashing indecision but it seems like a good move. A year is a long time to hide in a hole by comic standards and even if my promised next UBER issue isn’t realised by then at least I’ll be making some kind of appearance.

Also as usual I’ve completely failed to keep up with other people’s blogs/comics, rest assured I’ll be dropping in soon for my usual rounds of praise/harassment ;)