Rose Gets Diagnosed

For the last few weeks I have had to have eggs for breakfast every morning and right now if my doctor said I could be allergic to eggs I would be HAPPY AS LARRY right now let me tell you.

Then again now that I think about it I could totally go for a egg salad right now I wonder if they do delivery.

Oz Comic-Con Brisbane 2017 was a Treat!

Hello! I have finally recovered from one of the most hectic, fun-packed convention weekends in recent memory, and wanted to share it with you!

This was the first Oz Comic-Con that Rose and I exhibited at, so I really had no idea what to expect. It turned out that what I should have expected was great crowds of people who were into comics and loved to have a chat about the world’s hungriest redhead!

Rose #6 and Rose Collection were the big hits of the table, so thank you everyone who took a chance on those books (and if you didn’t make it, they’re now available in our shop!). Big apologies to my table neighbours and booth helpers who had to hear my one-line explanation of what Rose is over and over and over and over again.

On the Saturday I did a How To Make Mini Comics workshop – and you can watch it here! Skip to the three hour and seven minute mark 🙂

And on Sunday I did a panel with my pal Scott at Agent-X comics about how to get your comics online, which is a subject I can talk about for hours! Thank you everyone who attended and asked questions, it was a ton of fun. We talked about what to do if someone steals your ideas, how to format your comic for the web, how to make money doing comics online (obligatory link to my Patreon!) and whether or not to pander to your audience. I love doing panels!

I really hope I didn’t hog the mic too much 🙂

It was so awesome meeting everyone who visited the Rose table! It’s always great to see people read Rose and like what they see. It’s especially cool hearing from people who have started to make comics themselves! We had great chats about pizza dogs (put a sausage on a pizza, roll the pizza around it, BAM WELCOME TO FLAVOUR COUNTRY), muffins v cupcakes (I am a big fan of Nicola’s suggestion that they merge into cuffins) and how much fun comics can be. If you’re a new reader, welcome! Drop me a line or check out our Facebook page 🙂

Thank you to Sabrina, Scott, Julie & Fez, Nicola, Sarah, Kay and Frank for making this such a fun show, and of course everyone I talked to over the weekend – fellow creators, store owners and the friendly OCC staff and volunteers who kept things running so smoothly!

I am so pumped for the future of Rose. Join me, won’t you? 🙂

 

Rose Adores Jewellery

The last panel still makes me laugh, that’s always a good sign.

I am not really a jewellery person! Whenever someone shows me jewellery I can see that it is very pretty, and that it would look nice, but I can barely remember to wear shoes some days so I just know I would lose whatever it is behind the couch within minutes. But still, Rose is a big fan and so are many others, those shops are always packed like an Apple store on Steve Jobs’ deathiversary.

Geoff Borrows A Cable

We’ve seen Geoff need to borrow a phone cable before, but now the jig is well and truly up.

I really wish phones came with, like, five charging cables, for everywhere you need them.

One cable for your work desk

One cable for your bedside table so you can watch cat videos in bed all day

One for your car

One for your bag

One to lose somewhere and never see again

Rose’s Secret Ingredients

The other day I was reading some comics I liked and realised that there are lots of comics that were a big influence on how I developed Rose into a comic! So I thought it might be interesting if I talk about them here a bit. Consider them some of the secret ingredients of Rose.

Related image

Archie

Well, yeah, I mean, duh. You can see Archie’s influence all over Rose within seconds, and it’s a comparison I’ve never been shy about. That classic Dan Decarlo art style is the light on the hill I’ve been working towards for years, and I know I’ll never get anywhere close to it but I keep trying to move forward anyway. Some of my earliest comic book memories involve Archie digests being passed around the school room, and I quickly noticed that everyone liked reading Archie but only some kids liked the GI Joes and Transformers comics that were also in circulation. I liked that you can hand anyone an Archie book and they would read it, and that’s something I always wanted to be able to say about Rose.

The Perishers

Not many people know about this one, but I absolutely adored the UK comic strip. It was basically a Peanuts clone with kids that talked like adults, a perpetual loser hero, a rambunctious girl who tormented him, and a dog that spoke in thought bubbles, but I always had a soft spot for the strip. Somehow I wound up with  a handful of paperback collections of the strips and I loved how the kids talked to each other and made no apologies for their local dialect and accents. Rose is an Irish lass and I really try not to hide that.

Related image

Bad Machinery

Oh man. OH MAN. I was devouring John Allison’s Bad Machinery strips as I started work on Rose #1, and I think it’s only now that I’m realising what a big influence it was. I am smitten with how the kids talk to each other, and the strip is peppered with quiet little moments where you can just soak up the atmosphere. I love how regular words are used as sound effects. Maybe one day Rose and her friends will solve mysteries.

Love And Rockets

Jamie Hernandez’s part of Love And Rockets are just jaw droppingly beautiful. (Sorry Gilbert fans, I just never got into his stuff!) I adore his smooth, expressive lines and how he occasionally dips into Charles Schulz-esque cartooning for comedic effect. I discovered Love And Rockets when I was, what, 13 or so, and was struck by how a comic could have natural conversations about stuff that people really talk about. Every time I write dialogue with Rose talking to her friends I think about Love And Rockets.

Image result for love and rockets jaime hernandez

(What kind of comic shop was selling a 13 year old Love And Rockets?! Oh wait, the same one that didn’t mind a 13 year old hanging out in the store all day instead of going to school. The world was a different place back then!)

Image result for calvin and hobbesCalvin & Hobbes

I don’t think anyone would fight me for saying that this is the best comic strip to have been made in the last 50 years. There’s a billion articles out there on the internet about why Bill Watterson is a genius, but for me I always loved how Calvin was so self-obsessed but still charming as hell. It’s a quality that Rose has (plus her love of outbursts when she is suffering an injustice) that I like to think I convey in her stories.

Strangers In Paradise

OK truth to tell I can’t draw a direct line between Terry Moore’s incredible series and Rose, but every year I read his incredible How To Draw book and

a) learn something new that I try to put into the comics, especially when it comes to drawing hair, clothing or women in general
b) have a good long cry because I will never, ever, ever draw that well.

Related image

So there you go, a little peek behind the curtain! You never know where influences come from!