Keeping the ups (and downs) dated...
gulagcomics
I've finished the "Flotsam and Jetsam" strip now and I'm really pleased with it. I really feel like my drawing came on a long way whilst I was making this one. The strip weighs in at 13 pages, which is a lot longer than I originally planned. I'm still gonna put it in Silent V #5 as a back up strip though. This will have the effect of making issue 5 something of a bumper issue.

So far there's only been the Optical Sloth review of part four (which was probably the most positive review my work's had yet). I'm still waiting on a couple of other reviews for it.

I've started cracking down on the main story for issue 5 now. It starts exactly where part four left off. The end of the story's starting to come into sight, which leaves me wondering quite what I'll do next.

I'm getting ahead of myself ...

Optical Sloth Review here...
gulagcomics
The subject line says it all really, but Silent V #4 gets a rather good review from Optical Sloth today ...

http://www.opticalsloth.com/

Oh yeah, and sorry the promised preview pages didn't materialise. I've had a busy few weeks!

So...
gulagcomics
Those half-promised preview pictures of "Flotsam and Jetsam" have yet to materialise. They're hopefully on the way! I'd asked Kayleigh to take some pictures of the strip, but she's been so busy with other things that it slipped from her pretty, elfin mind. She's a business woman now, y'know; she has more important things to do than take photographs of my comics.

Anyway, I'd better get going and teach some art to some kids!

Flotsam and Jetsam
gulagcomics
I've just started making (as in, I've pencilled and inked the first two pages) of a new piece called "Flotsam and Jetsam". It's basically a humorous and somewhat disturbing look at the dangers of over-eating. At first it was just going to be a bit of an experiment, and I thought I might possibly submit it to a few different anthology comics, but I really like how it's turning out. My current plan is to include it as a secondary story in the next issue of "Silent V". This does mean that the main story of "...V" will occupy somewhat fewer pages in the next issue, but the comic as a whole will be more varied than it has been up until now. I might start putting back-up stories in quite regularly if the response to this is good.


I will probably put some preview shots of "Flotsam and Jetsam" up on here soon (there isn't a huge ammount to see at the moment).

Been a long, long time...
gulagcomics
It's so long since I updated this! I thought I'd rear my virtual head and nod it at anyone who might still be paying attention. I've been very busy these last few months; I now have two jobs which means burning the candle at both ends a bit ... but somehow I'm still finding the time to draw comics. Silent V Part Four is finished and available to anyone who'd like a copy. I launched it at Natalie Bradbury's zine fair in Manchester a couple of weeks ago, where it seemed to go down fairly well.

If anyone's looking to fill holes in their Silent V collection, you should know that I'm almost out of issues one and two now - so get the orders in fast!

Silent V #3
gulagcomics
Yep, Silent V#3 is completed, duplicated, and there are several copies of it sitting in a box in my spare room. Should anyone wish for a copy, please email me at brokenbiscuit@gmail.com. I realise this isn't the most exciting or amusing blog I've ever written but my brain's a bit frazzled from working too many late nights.

Here is the cover...



Here is a quick preview...




I'm well underway with drawing the fourth installment now...

As the Evenings Draw In...
gulagcomics
It's been awhile since I last updated this, so I thought I'd give all curious parties an insight into the goings on in my personal life over the last couple of months. As I wittered on about in summer, money was starting to get a wee bit tight and it was neccessary for me to find some more gainful employment. After failing to get a job anywhere else, I wound up taking some extra hours on at the cafe where I've been working since I moved to Norwich at the start of this year. This is okay for the time being, I don't resent the job the way I used to. I do want to get out of catering soon though, and find something a bit more stimulating and appropriate.

I've started playing music again and it's making me as anxious and difficult as ever. I get very frustrated at my inability to make music (and especially sing vocal melodies) the exact way I hear it in my head. Kayleigh's being wonderful and supportive in this respect. She's the sole other Winter Berry these days, having taken the job over from Mr. John Ammirati (hey John, I miss you xxx). I'm gradually learning to trust her and accept that IT'S NOT AS BAD AS I THINK IT IS.

It's taken a lot longer to put together than the previous issue, mostly because of working more and because of playing music, but Silent V # 3 is finally starting to take real shape and I'm getting a good sense of how this comic will come out, and how it will compare to the previous ones. Those of you expecting answers and explanations won't get them all yet, but I can tell you that there is a BIG plot development in this one.

We're almost in to winter now, and it's so cold these mornings! And evenings!

Silent V#2
gulagcomics
My second comic gets a review here...

http://www.opticalsloth.com/?p=17413

The Adventure Journals of Sin Cat
gulagcomics
The first issue of Lee Johnson's Sin Cat series isn't the most accessible comic you'll ever come across. The artist's page layouts are manic and scattershot, offering up some decidely outsider art stylings. The anthropomorphic animal characters are almost abstract in their design, and this can take a little getting used to - Johnson's style is radical, highly stark, and perhaps somewhat influenced by graffiti.

Readers able to squint through the tiny panels and traverse the first few (fairly intimidating) pages will soon settle into the insane visiual logic of Johnson's comic and begin to deccode the alternately whacky and nightmarish tale within. The real narrative substance of this comic comes from the pro-animal rights and anarchist propaganda spread throughout, and those that follow Sin Cat's journey will be left with few doubts as to where his creator's political sympathies lie.

This is without doubt a challenging, subversive and unique comic - and one that could only come from the small press underground.

Back to the Drawing Board
gulagcomics
Despite me picking up a few more hours at the cafe over the past couple of weeks, I've still managed to do a fair bit of work on Silent V #3. I was erasing the pencil lines from page 12 right before flickin' on the comp to write this entry. The second issue was put together really quickly, and I promised myself a bit of a break before I embarked on the third one. But I'm just not happy if I'm not being creative, so I started work on part three right after my birthday last month. I'm taking a bit more of a relaxed pace with this one, so there's no set deadline for when it will be finished. But, with 12 pages already done ... well, that's quite a substantial chunk.

In non-comics related news, I promoted my first Norwich gig a couple of weeks ago. That's the first gig I've organised since moving here from Manchester at the start of this year. It felt good to be involved with music again, though I still haven't worked up the confidence to start playing live again. Kayleigh and I did, however, record a new version of the old Cookie Cutterr song 'Paper Planes' to go on a compilation.

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