Posts Tagged ‘webcomics I dig…’



Hey Kids, Webcomics!

I’d never heard of TechRadar.Com before, but The Comics Journal’s Journalista! posted a link to their article entitled, “The rise of webcomics.”  It’s a fairly basic primer and gives a broad overview of the webcomic scene.  What I’ve noticed about webcomic articles in mainstream publications is that they generally do a good job of covering the nuts and bolts of the burgeoning webcomics industry (Are we an industry, yet?) and treat the subject with a greater deal of respect than they grant our printed comic book counterparts.  I’ve yet to see a “BIF! BAM! POW! HOLY DIGITAL DRAWINGS!!” article about webcomics, so that’s a plus.

- JEP


Making “Trax”

WORLD OF HURT received a fantastic review yesterday from Coyote Trax’s Webcomics Critique.  He e-mailed me beforehand and let me know it was coming, but I was floored by the glowing praise and the analysis of my work.  This is all a very new experience for me, and although I’m familiar with the concept of art criticism,  it’s really weird when someone gets inside your head and does such a good job of sussing out your creative intent.

- JEP


‘WORLD OF HURT’ Nominated In 2010 Glyph Awards

Glyph Comic Awards logo

I’m very humbled and honored to announce that WORLD OF HURT was nominated in six categories for the 2010 Glyph Comic Awards!

The categories include Story Of The Year, Best Writer, Best Artist, Best Male Character, Rising Star, and Best Comic Strip

I was further shocked by Rich Watson’s update today, in which he placed the nominations in historical perspective, when he posted, “With a leading six noms this year, including Story, Comic Strip and Rising Star, Jay Potts’ WORLD OF HURT is the biggest debut in [Glyph Comics Awards] history.”   

I know that it’s a cliche to say that it is an honor just to be nominated, but it is definitely true, particularly with the incredible line-up of talent and phenomenal properties that are in contention for Glyph Awards this year.  For example, one of the first professionals I met in the comic book industry was Joshua Dysart, when he and Tone Rodriguez were working on Violent Messiahs for Hurricane Entertainment.  I own an autographed, mint copy of Jeremy Love’s Chocolate Thunder from 2000.  Chocolate Thunder was an early project Jeremy Love did in collaboration with his brothers Robert and Maurice, which they published through their own imprint, Gettosake Entertainment.   Last year, Jeremy Love scored a record-setting five wins at the 2009 Glyph Comic Awards for his webcomic, Bayou, which is published through Zuda Comics.  Looking at the arc of Jeremy Love’s career,  his entrepreneurial spirit and creativity, which was always in evidence, is an inspiring example that one does not have to forsake artistic vision for the sake of commerce, and vice versa.  I wasn’t looking for that copy of Chocolate Thunder, but I stumbled across it in one of my short boxes yesterday.  I don’t believe in signs, but I do believe in hubris, so I won’t say anything more. :)  

Congratulations to all the nominees, but a special congratulations are due to John Aston, a friend of WORLD OF HURT and fellow member of Rodney Blackwell’s “The Next 100″ ™.  John received a 2010 Glyph Awards ‘Rising Star’ nomination for his work on Rachel Rage.  We’re representing South Carolina big this year! 

Thank you very much everyone for your encouragement and for all the work you’ve done to help spread the word about this webcomic.

- JEP


“ANT”-E UP!*

This week, WORLD OF HURT celebrated its one year anniversary on the World Wide Web.  However, on Thursday, April 8th, Julian Lytle, also celebrated the one year anniversary of his webcomic, Ants, so I thought I’d take the time to spotlight the work of my fellow 2010 Glyph Award nominee.

David Brothers of 4thLetter.net hipped me to Lytle’s work in the interview he conducted with Lytle as part of his Black Future ‘10 series.  The titular characters are four human-sized anthropomorphic ants who could easily be buddies from your college days, hanging out, talkin’ smack, and living life in contemporary America.  The characters each have their own unique appearances, so the reader can easily tell them apart, but I’m not certain that Lytle ever gives them names.  The Ants dress and speak like modern Black youth, but Lytle renders them with antenna and long, gangly tubular bodies in a loose, spontaneous style that recalls Rob Schrab’s Scud, The Disposable Assassin by way of Ashley (Popbot) Wood and Corey (SharkKnife) Lewis. 

With one notable exception which I will discuss later, Ants contains mostly one-off humor strips, so it is extremely accessible to new readers.  Despite the general lack of lengthy story arcs, Lytle does reward long-time readers with a few recurring gags and callbacks to previous strips, such as one of the character’s attempts to start a new dance craze called “The Crack Back.”  Also, it may just mean I’m out of touch with current slang, but Ants is the first place I’ve seen the word “kirkin’” used to refer someone flying into a rage, a la Captain James T. Kirk’s oft-parodied scream of “KHAAAAAANNN!!!” in Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan.

Dancin’ Makes The Stars

Inspired by real life events that anticipated a potential Eggo shortage this summer, Ants recently concluded a long-running storyline that placed the characters in a quest to exact vengeance upon Thor, the Norse god of thunder, for his suspected role in disrupting the nation’s supply of it’s favorite frozen waffles.  It was a far-ranging tale with gloriously insane moments built on an equally insane premise.  However, I would argue that Ants is at its best when it focuses on current events and political commentary, such as when the Ants broke the fourth wall to offer tips to cheating men in the wake of the Tiger Woods scandal.  Lytle can effortlessly mix social commentary with liberal doses of contemporary and classic pop culture references. 

Sal’s Town Hall

In those sublime moments, Ants beautifully fills the void that Aaron McGruder left when he stopped producing The Boondocks comic strip for the newspapers so he could chase (and catch) some animation paper.  With his unique style and his capacity to launch hilariously biting assaults on politicians or hip-hop’s sacred cows like Lil’ Wayne, Lytle’s work, like Glyph Award winner, Keith Knight (The K Chronicles), pushes editorial cartooning forward to a new look, style and voice that keeps the artform fresh and relevant for modern audiences.

I’ll see you next week with an all-new strip and a return of The Unsung Bad Mother****** Awards!

- JEP

* I know I butchered the title, but I’ll use any excuse to drop a M.O.P. reference.


Brian McLachlan Is ‘Smooth N’ Natural’

FROM THE “TOO FUNKY FOR WORDS” FILES:

Brian McLachlan does "The World"

A literal representation of the “World Of Hurt” from the mind and pen of the multi-talented, and very funny, Brian McLachlan.

For those of you who may not know, Brian is part of Transmission-X, the highly acclaimed webcomic collective that, among others, includes artists Karl (The Abominable Christopher Charles) Kerschl and Cameron (Sin Titulo) Stewart.  Brian is the force behind the webcomic, The Princess Planet, a webcomic about the humorous exploits of the adventurous, bodysuit-clad Princess Christi and the the assortment of strange, goofy, and ridiculous inhabitants of her kingdom.  It’s a strip that boasts a gentle, all-ages humor filled with hilarious, and sometimes groan-worthy, sight gags and puns.  The clever wordplay and Brian’s great cartooning are signatures of The Princess Planet.  (For a great five-star review by one of my favorite webcomic reviewers, El Santo of Webcomic Overlook, go here.)

Brian McLachlan was one of the first professional artists to contact me after I started WORLD OF HURT.  He sent me a very kind and encouraging e-mail and told me of his own interest in Blaxploitation.  He also mentioned that he was working on his own Blaxploitation-themed series, or as he called it, a “retrosexual exploitation style graphic novel” that he was planning on rolling out soon.  After corresponding for a while, he sent me a digital version of the work-in-progress, a series called Smooth N’ Natural.  I think it took me a while to respond to him after that, because my jaw broke the keyboard on its way to the floor.

Smooth N’ Natural takes place in an alternate world “…where the funk still flows and love is still free.”  It follows the adventures of Luthor and Lucas Love, the sons of a the late Luscious Love, a legendary Lothario and ass-kicker.  To paraphrase The Temptations, “Papa Love was a rolling stone,” who REALLY got around, so the Brothers Love are half-brothers born on the same night from different mothers.  Lucas is the dark-skinned brother with the ‘Fro and facial hair of John Shaft.  Luthor is a fair-skinned, like Allan Willis from The Jefferson.  To use the vernacular, he could “pass.  However, both men live up to their surname, because they inherited their late father’s sexual “mojo.”  They also inherited his desire for righteous, two-fisted adventure and justice.  Together, “the brothers from another mother” are kung-fu fightin’, head-busting trouble shooters.

The story takes place in an alternate world “…where the funk still flows and love is still free.”  In essence, it’s like those old DC Comics featuring Phantom Lady and The Freedom Fighters who lived on a parallel Earth where World War II never ended and 1940s fashion never went out of style.  In the case of Smooth ‘N Natural, the 1970s never ended.  McLachlan has a great eye for the fashion and aesthetic of the 1970s, from the clothes to the furnishings in the apartments of the two brothers.  However, he adds clever details, like a mobile phone with a rotary dial on its face, to reinforce the alternate world concept.  McLachlan takes full advantage of the change in format and subject matter from The Princess Planet.  Whereas The Princess Planet is an all-ages strip, McLachlan isn’t afraid to get a little racy and sexy in Smooth N’ Natural, with nudity and strong sexual situations, which is true to the spirit of the original Blaxploitation films.  However, in the words of the Brian McLachlan himself, Smooth N’ Natural not only uses the best elements of Blaxploitation but he also blends it with a bit of “…other elements like Andy Sidaris movies and even some Bond stuff.”  Also, the former strip contains mostly one-off strips or very short storylines, but in the material he sent me, Smooth N’ Natural seems to be built around much longer storylines, which are in the action-comedy vein.  In many ways, Smooth N’ Natural is the spiritual cousin to Jim Rugg and Brian Maruca’s Afrodisiac, which I also loved.

I thought Smooth N’ Natural was an absolute blast, and I think you will, too.  Fortunately, you’re in luck, because Brian is releasing Smooth N’ Natural as a webcomic.  He will officially debut it next month at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival, but you can check it out now at www.smoothnnatural.com.  Be sure to check it out, bookmark it, and then spread the word.

- JEP





“WORLD OF HURT” Goes On The Road To HeroesCon

 

This weekend, I’ll be attending HeroesCon in Charlotte, NC.  It’s my first convention of the year and I’m certainly looking forward to it.  I’ll be driving up with artist extraordinaire and king of the comic book hustle, Mr. Sanford Greene, on Friday. Once I’m there, you can find me at Table AA-210, where I’ll be joined by the talented Messrs Jeremy Summey and Steve Howard.  Jeremy did an incredible job coloring the cover of the WORLD OF HURT: The Thrill-Seekers hardcover.  Jeremy’s brother, Anthony, is kicking out a swash-buckling webcomic entitled, Delacroix & The Daring, every week at http://thedaringcomic.com.    

I’ll be selling two new posters, prints, buttons, sketches and some original art for sale, too.  So, if you’re in the area, c’mon down, say “hey,” hang out, and maybe drop some scratch while you’re at it.

Also, this year’s HeroesCon also marks the first time that I will be taking part in a convention panel discussion.  Just three years ago, I was sitting in the audience of a webcomics panel featuring Danielle Corsetto (http://girlswithslingshots.com), Julia Wertz  (http://fartparty.org), and Nicholas Gurewitch (http://pbfcomics.com), thinking, “Maybe I could do this,too,” now here I am.  Listening to them lay out the ups and downs of webcomics in blunt, but humorous, terms, was an inspiration, and it’s an honor to be part of this new tradition.,

Here’s the copy from the Heroescon schedule which shows you when and where to find me.

Friday, June 3rd

4:00 PM

Kickstarter: A New Way To Fund Personal Projects
Room 206

Kickstarter is the largest funding platform for creative projects in the
world. Every month, tens of thousands of amazing people pledge millions of dollars to projects from the worlds of comics, music, film, art, design and other creative fields. Join Dustin Harbin, Jay Potts, and Jeremy Bastian as they discuss their experiences using this new resource to publish comic projects.
www.kickstarter.com

Sunday,  June 5th

2:30 PM

THE WEB COMICS: Solo Shocker
Room 207BCD

Join Rich Barrett (http://www.richbarrett.com/nathansorry/), Mike Maihack (http://www.cowshell.com/cleopatra/), Tom Scioli (http://ambarb.com), Jay Potts (THAT’S ME!) and Drew Weing (http://www.drewweing.com/comics/), Joey Weiser (http://tragic-planet.com/monsterisle/ they tell Dollar Bin’s Adam Daughhetee what it’s like go it alone making some of the most exciting Web comics out there in the ether.)as

I look forward to seeing you guys there.  Drive safe!

 

-  JEP


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