Above: Captain Sunshine (1979) by Colin Wilson.
Recently announced as a Comics Guest for the upcoming Armageddon Expo shows in Christchurch and Dunedin in March, Colin Wilson is one of the country’s most successful cartoonists.
He started his career in 1977 editing and self-publishing Strips, the first locally produced comics anthology. In 1979 he also co-created New Zealand’s ecological superhero comic, Captain Sunshine – which featured in my book, From Earth’s End: The Best of New Zealand Comics. Wilson soon realised that to become a professional comic artist he would need to move overseas.
Above: Judge Dredd: The Colin Wilson Collection.
Arriving in London in 1980, Wilson began working for the UK weekly 2000AD, drawing Judge Dredd alongside artists like Dave Gibbons and Brian Bolland. While his colleagues looked to the States, Wilson’s eye turned to Europe, as he began a 15-year career drawing his own series Dans l'Ombre du Soleil, and realizing a personal dream by drawing the western Blueberry alongside his artistic idol Jean Giraud aka Moebius.
Wilson returned to Australia in 1996, and while he continued to produce work for the European market (Tex, Du Plomb Dans La Tête), his art also appeared regularly via US comics publishers, on such titles as The Losers, Battler Britton, The Rocketeer Adventures and Bionic Commando.
Above: The Example by Tom Taylor and Colin Wilson.
Forming a creative partnership with Australian writer Tom Taylor (who will also be appearing at Armageddon Expo), they have collaborated together on numerous projects. Including such titles as: Star Wars: Invasion, The Example, Jour J, and donated a short story to Funtime #26, Darkest Day: Comics For Christchurch – a comics anthology created to raise funds for the Red Cross in the wake of the Christchurch earthquake in 2010.
In 2013, his European comic series Du Plomb Dans La Tête (published in the US as Bullet To The Head) was made into a major motion picture, directed by Walter Hill, starring Sylvester Stallone, Christian Slater and Jason Momoa. Wilson is currently completing the art for Martha, a book in the very successful European series XIII Mystery, before starting work on a new, original series for Delcourt.
Above: The cover of The Adventures of Captain Sunshine (1979) by Colin Wilson.
This will be a great opportunity for local comics fans to meet and talk to one of our own who has made a career from comics, working at the top of the global comics industry. And maybe also get a rare copy of The Adventures of Captain Sunshine #1 signed! (I believe there are still copies surfacing on TradeMe from time to time…).
Armageddon Expo Christchurch takes place in March 11-12th at the Horncastle Arena, and Armageddon Expo Dunedin follows on March 18-19th at the More FM Arena. For tickets and information visit the Armageddon Expo website HERE.