Friday, March 30, 2012

Comics Generation exhibition: An Inside Look


Above: Comics Generation, an exhibition featuring young cartoonists, currently on this weekend at Thistle Hall (corner of Cuba and Arthur Streets) in Wellington. All photos by Claire Harris.

Currently taking place at Thistle Hall in Wellington, Comics Generation is shinning a light on the work of promising young cartoonists, including the artwork of: Theo Macdonald, Michael Sanders, Sadie Galloway, Esther Galloway, Zora Patrick and Joel Spencer. Via the Thistle Hall Facebook Page, here's some exclusive photos of the exhibition by curator Claire Harris.



Above: Some wide views of the exhibition space.


Above: Meyo original artwork form a 27 page full-colour comic by Joel Spencer.


Above: Narrative strips from The Tragic Existence of Egbert the Egghead and Colonel Kernel and Batbat cover gallery by Michael Sanders.


Above: SpaceCat Adventures cover artwork by Michael Sanders.


Above: The Honey poison by Esther Galloway on the left side, followed by The Nightmare by Sadie Galloway.


Above: Drawings, sketch book and The encyclopedia of Small (and big) Creatures by Zora Patrick.


Above: Artwork by Theo Macdonald.


Above: Artwork from Theocracy by Theo Macdonald.



Above: Copies of the childrens' printed comics for sale at the exhibition.

Today is the last day of the show, so if you're in the Wellington area, I advise you to drop your copy of the Weekend Herald and get down there while you still can! And if you miss the exhibition, keep an eye out for New Zealand Comic Creators distributors at shows like the Armageddon Expo where you may be able to track down a copy of these great comics for yourself!

-AK!


Sunday, March 25, 2012

EVENT: Comics Generation


The next generation of New Zealand cartoonists will make their presence felt tomorrow night, with the opening of Comics Generation an exhibition featuring comics and zines created by six young Wellingtonians, ranging in age from 5 to 17 years old. The creators include: Theo Macdonald, Michael Sanders, Sadie Galloway, Esther Galloway, Zora Patrick and Joel Spencer.

Above: Theo Macdonald meets comics legend Neil Gaiman, in this autobiographical strip from Theocracy #1. Copyright Theo Macdonald 2012.

Curated by cartoonist and NZCC comics distributor Claire Harris, the exhibition will showcase the young creators original artwork as well as work in progress, with the opportunity to purchase their printed comics and zines.
Above: The cover of Theocracy #1. Copyright Theo Macdonald 2012.

Two of the featured cartoonists are already well seasoned self-publishers. Theo Macdonald's first comic, Skate Rat produced when he was just 12 years old, picked up ‘Best Debut’ at the New Zealand Eric Comics Awards in 2010, and was followed up by the highly amusing Theocracy
.

Above: The cover of SpaceCat Adventures #2 by Michael Sanders. Copyright Michael Sanders 2012.

Another early starter, Michael Sanders has drawn 6 issues of SpaceCat Adventures to date, starting at age 8. Written in tandem with his father Paul Sanders, the series follows SpaceCat as he traverses his way through the galaxy on adventures featuring aliens, space guns and anything Michael's imagination can put to paper! You can read more of SpaceCat's adventures at the official website HERE.

Above: SpaceCat experiences an alien menace in Terror In Squizball by Michael Sanders & Paul Sanders. Copyright Michael Sanders 2012.

Both of these young creators have already had their comics sold throughout the country at comic stores and the Armageddon Expo thanks to distribution through the New Zealand Comic Creators network.

In conjunction with the exhibition, their will also be two workshops held to encourage children in creating their own characters, zines and comic book stories. These will occur Saturday 31 March and be presented by experienced tutors, with one freestyle workshop suitable for all ages, and a second focused on story and character development for older children. Workshop numbers are limited, to reserve a place contact Paul Sanders at spacecatadventures@gmail.com. 
For other enquires contact Claire Harris at claire@frailsistercomics.com.

Comics Generation opens tomorrow night at Thistle Hall (corner of Cuba and Arthur Streets) in Wellington at 5.30pm, and runs till Saturday 31st of March. I'm sure you'll be seeing more from these talented creators in the future, so if you're in the Wellington area make sure you head along to support the cartoonists of tomorrow, today!
-AK!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

FIRST LOOK: Baltimore: Dr. Leskovar's Remedy

Above: The cover for Baltimore: Dr. Leskovar's Remedy #1 by Ben Stenbeck. Copyright Dark Horse Comics/Mike Mignola 2012.

Dark Horse Comics have recently announced that Lord Henry Baltimore will be returning for a new 2 issue mini-series in May, with Baltimore: Dr. Leskovar's Remedy. This will be the third installment in the series of adventures for the monster hunter, following on from highly successful previous Baltimore volumes: The Plague Ships and The Curse Bells, written by Hellboy creator Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden with art by Ben Stenbeck.

I caught up with local artist Ben Stenbeck for a brief chat on what to expect from the series, and an exclusive preview of his interior artwork!
Above: An interior page from Baltimore: Dr. Leskovar's Remedy #1 by Ben Stenbeck. Copyright Dark Horse Comics/Mike Mignola 2012.

AK: Been your third arc on Baltimore, are you finding yourself in a comfortable drawing 'groove' with the character?

BS: Little bit. Its very slow for me. But yeah I think issue #1 has 1 or 2 panels of Baltimore that I'm happy with, that I think I've got the character working. Which I haven't really had with the past books, Its a bit like every time I draw him, I'm trying to figure out how to draw him. But I think I'm getting there.

AK: With the new arc only 2 issues long, will this be a more compressed action-oriented story than the suspense building pace of the previous arcs?

BS: Yes. Chris said something along the lines of it being 'Blissful Madness'.  Its a weird, fun story. I think The Curse Bells was the darkest thing we've done so far, it gets really nasty in some places and Dr Leskovars Remedy is like a bit of relief, its a lot of fun (when I say fun, I mean: Monsters and Gore. Well..Monster Gore which is the most fun type of gore).

AK: Each installment of the Baltimore series has contained its share of gruesomely great creatures for Lord Baltimore to cut his way through (and the Mignola cover image does promises some giant ape action!), any other hints of what kind of creepy images or creatures we can expect to see this time around? 

Above: Baltimore: Dr. Leskovar's Remedy #1, alternate cover by Mike Mignola featuring King Kong. Copyright Dark Horse Comics/Mike Mignola 2012.

BS: That King Kong cover is part of Mike's 'Year of Monsters'. This year he's doing 12 alternate covers that have nothing to do with the comic they are on the cover of. Its a chance for him to do some cool images of his favourite monsters along side his characters. That King Kong and Baltimore cover is my favourite so far, but sadly I don't get to draw King Kong. But yes, this series has monsters. Lots of monsters.

AK: I heard that you contributed some ideas and suggestions early on for this story. What were some of the things you wanted to explore and add to the series through your artwork?

BS: Well that's hard to answer with out spoiling the series. But a long time ago I mentioned to Mike that I wanted to do a certain type of character. And I had this idea for a setting, this environment that I wanted to draw. Its just a cool weird thing that i thought would look interesting. And there's something else but it kind of turned into the last half of the 2nd issue, so You'll have to wait.

AK: Is Baltimore your sole focus for the foreseeable future or do you have any other projects coming up?

BS: There is a 2 part story I was meant to be doing with a 'Hellboy-verse' character. But things get changed, I'm not sure whats happening with that now. I've got a series of my own that I'm planning to try and squeeze in in 2015. Something I've had bouncing around in my head for almost 20 years. But that's a long way off, so for now its all Baltimore. I just got the script this morning for the next oneshot. I haven't finished reading it yet, I got distracted by answering this email. Better get back to work. Sorry for all  the vague answers! 

All will be revealed when Baltimore: Dr. Leskovar's Remedy #1 hits shelves in May, so pre-order your copy now! For more info on Ben Stenbeck's artwork and comics, you can visit his website HERE.

-AK!