Friday, 22 September 2017

Logo Practice

Comic book logo design is tricky AF. You've got to convey a message using just a simple word or phrase that lets the reader know what to expect from your comic. It can help to sell the comic to potential buyers so getting it right is an important part of the comic creation process.

I'm always looking to practice and improve on my graphic design skills so when a hole appeared in my schedule I decided to offer my experience to a few lucky comic creators on Reddit and design them a FREE logo. I find it more challenging to work to a brief rather than just making up names and maybe these logos will go on to better things if the stories get picked up.

Below are 4 examples I've just completed along with the brief supplied by the comic's creator.

Brief: A modern-day occult/detective noir story in the vein of True Detective.


Brief: A story about twin bandits that involves magic, travelling to different worlds and defending themselves from an evil force. It's a bit futuristic in a way and it's called...


Brief: The book has tons of swearing it in, so its not appropriate for children. I'd like a logo that very adult-looking. Also it should be extremely legible even when it a tiny thumbnail, because a lot of people buy comics online on sites like Comixology and they are picking books based off very tiny thumbnails. The only other suggestion I have is to make the "post-apocalyptic" part prominent (or at least don't minimized it too much) because there will be a huge dinosaur on every cover so people will already know its about dinosaurs no matter what. The "Post Apocalyptic" part is the unique thing.




Brief: The character's name is Pulsar, and he's a kinda down on his luck guy with an absent father, who literally explodes one day. Everything around him is wiped out, and he's covered in a strange blue plasma from head to toe. He has several orange orbs that orbit his chest, and can fly, is strong, fires the plasma in bolts and beams and stuff... you name it. And, you know, uses his powers for good.


Quite a different range of genres but hopefully you can see a little of those genres injected in to the logos.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Latest Update #5

These updates are a useful way of keeping this blog fresh and also reminding myself that making comics is a never ending battle against the most evil of super-villians - The Time Stealin' Goblin! "West" I say to myself, "Make some more comics." You gotta keep sticking it to that bastard of a goblin.

  • Hallowscream 2017 - We've got a cover artist sorted and loads of great stories for this year's issue of everyone's favourite indie horror comic. Next month's launch will come quickly so you can be sure all the contributors are busy working on their comic strips.

    I've got 3 stories appearing in this issue! My very own attempt at art Peril in the Park, a 2 page story titled Caught in a Moment, drawn by Croatian artist Boris Peci, and a single page story called A Wine for Every Occasion drawn by Australian artist Ken Best. It's a real international affair! Preview pics below...





  • My 2 page strip Made for Each Other has been accepted by the team at Strange Romance. This is a professional comic and I've had to sign a contract to give them the story rights for a year but there will be some level of payment for my work! Getting paid to make comics, how bizarre!
  • I'm still fine tuning my anthology Killer Bytes which is now looking like a 2018 launch date. I've pretty much missed convention season so it makes sense to hold it back until the new year.
  • Half way through the first draft of issue 1 of Get Woke, the dead-celebrity conspiracy comic.
  • There's currently 4 scripts approved by various indie anthologies that are waiting for an artist to be assigned Mommy's Little Angel, The Wizards of Westside, Misery BusinessMika and the Godheart.
  • Recently finished writing a 7 page sci-fi story titled Familiars. I'm making an effort to write some scripts in advance so when a new submissions call goes out I'll have some stories on file I can send immediately rather than writing them in a rush to meet deadlines.
As you can see, there's plenty going on and plenty more to do. As a writer, I keep a list of story ideas that grows each month. There's also a second list I maintain, to manage the stories in progress that have qualified from the first list, as ideas that are worth further attention. This list is getting BIG. So fuck you, goblin. I'm going to make some comics.

Monday, 4 September 2017

Mbrustah's Millions

Apologies for the lack of recent posts but overall it hasn't been too painful leaving the previous Get Woke post at the top of this blog for the last couple of weeks. It's an awesome image and the script for issue 1 is coming along nicely.

In the meantime, I've just finished this little strip that made me giggle. I believe I'm actually getting faster at the art! For the people of Reddit, the art isn't that important, it's the story that counts. Hopefully this will be to their liking. It made me giggle.


EDIT: 34 up votes on Reddit. Not great but not a total disaster.

Friday, 18 August 2017

Get Woke Concept Cover




The swirls effect doesn't quite work on some devices. Best viewed on desktop PC.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

New Art Commission

Us writers are a highly secretive and paranoid bunch when it comes to sharing our ideas. The wild imagination required for conjuring up new worlds and fantastical plotlines also generates shadowy figures round every corner trying to steal ideas like sinister child-snatchers (for these stories are definitely our babies). Truth is, ideas are ten a penny. Good ideas are rarer, but ultimately it's the getting up off your arse and doing something about them that really separates the creatives from those with just ideas.

I'd like to share with you a good idea for a comic book series I had that I found so cool I commissioned awesome artist Dean Beattie to sketch up the characters. Check out his process below...








The brief: Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, Princess Diana, Bigfoot and the disembodied brain of JFK battle evil in a world where conspiracy theories are true.

I'll be posting more about this idea in the coming weeks so stay tuned. 

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Rumblebot Rampage Preview

It's always pleasant when an email arrives containing artwork for a script, and that's exactly what happened this morning. Rumblebot Rampage is a 4 page sci-fi/comedy that is due to appear in the 20th issue of 100% Biodegradable (released March 2018). Beautifully drawn and lettered by Ed Norden (Torsobear, Murky Depths) this story has it all, fighting, robots, aliens and jokes. Here's a little preview panel below...


Friday, 4 August 2017

The Day I Got Fired

Not posted for a while so just going to drop this out here for some Friday comic goodness. I've submitted this story to Dirty Rotten Comics and I'm still waiting to hear back so I may have to take it down if they want to print it in their newest edition.

A 2 page story, based on real life events what did happen in my real life. It was 20 years ago so much of it is blurred nostalgia and BS but the story is how I remember it even if the images have been embellished a tad. Hold the press though, I drew this bad boy myself. Check it.



Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Latest Update #4

It might have gone a bit quiet round here lately bit there's been movement and all sorts of excitement going on behind the scenes.
  • I've found an artist for story i wrote waaaaaaay back in 2010 called 'Caught in a Moment'. Nice to finally catch a fish for this as it's stalled on 2 occasions before. IF this does get completed this time round (and I've seen the rough sketches so it's promising) this 2 page story will be going in to this year's Hallowscream.
  • Hallowscream itself is coming along nicely. We've had several approved submissions and final strips completed and looks set to be another scare-fest this Halloween.
  • Killer Bytes, my first anthology, is pretty much complete. There's a couple of stories being tidied up by the artists/letterers but once that's done it's ready to print!
  • I've teamed up with super-cool artist Laura Sorvala for a brand new 2 page script which we will be submitting to Self Made Hero's Corbyn Comic Book Competition.  If accepted it'll be printed alongside some of the most well know political artists and sold at the Labour Party’s Annual Conference in September 2017.
  • I've submitted a brand new story (2 pager again!) to the Strange Romance anthology for their 3rd issue. You can find the previous 2 issues on Comixology and they look great! Would love to be a part of this. fingers crossed for the submission (which is awesome IMHO).
  • I've landed a small PAID lettering job for a submission bysome chap I bet online. Only 6 page but every little helps.
  • Finally, and most excitingly, inspiration finally struck for a full length series which I believe has a ton of potential. While Kill Spree, my first series, is now back-back burner, this new series could be worth pushing quite hard as it may have broad appeal and plenty of resources to build its world. I'm still formulating this in the lab so very early days for this project at the moment.
As you can see, busy busy.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

FutureQuake2017

The latest edition of FutureQuake is now available to purchase from the FutureQuakePress store. Why should you buy this? Well apart from the fact it is 100 pages of awesome comic book gorgeousness, filled with 18 amazing sci-fi stories from some of the top names in indie comics, it contains LONDON ROCKS, a 7 page face-melter of a story written by Tim West and drawn by Rafael Romeo Magat. Behold, the cover...





Are you still here? Go. Buy. Consume. Enjoy.

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Drac's Back...



The follow up to the extremely popular Cunt Dracula post is now up on Reddit. I'll be monitoring this all day although I'm not expecting to hit the whopping 14.9 thousand upvotes of the first strip. This second strip is a little esoteric, a little longer and a little rushed in the art department.

EDIT: 24 hours on from posting on Reddit and Cunt Dracula 2 has a woeful 26 upvotes. I can't say I'm surprised. Lessons learned are:

  • If you're going to follow up on a hit, don't wait 3 months to post the second part.
  • The nature of viewing web comics on mobile means user prefer 4 panel shorts as they fit perfectly on a smartphone screen.
  • Don't flog a dead horse.