Sunday, 1 March 2015

R.I.P John Cooper


John Cooper was one of my favourite artists back in the 70s when I was growing up so I was saddened to read of his death last week. A great artist with a great eye for an action page.
 R.I.P John.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Read the review! Buy the book!





With FREE p&p, now is the time to stock up on the PARAGON range, including the hardback annual and the Jikan Chronicles Book Three!


Sunday, 25 January 2015

The PARAGON Annual 2015 - free?!


Sadly, this seems to have died on its arse, which is a shame as I think it's the best book I've put out yet - and that really is saying something

Hopefully by putting the download version out as a free ebook it will now gather some readers


Download a copy. It's bloody good.

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Churchill

Seemed appropriate to post this teaser poster for The Jikan Chronicles Book Four today!


Sunday, 18 January 2015

Scratting around the digital page

You know in the Ice Age cartoon movies there is that squirrel creature bounding around chasing an acorn always trying to climb a wall or God-knows-what, desperately trying to find a purchase with his tiny claws?

That's my eyeballs with digital comic pages. My eyes just slip off the page; turn the page, see a digitally illustrated colour comic strip and, wheeee - turn the page again as I have nothing to focus on.

2000AD regularly has strips illustrated in this manner; ABC warriors, Slaine, American Reaper.... not read any of them. My eyes just glaze over at it. Doesn't matter who writes it, who draws it - if it's photoshopped, digitally enhanced faces I've got no chance of focussing on it.

And I think that is why I hate American Reaper so much. I was brought up on UK comics in the seventies with ten panel, hand drawn pages by the likes of Mike Western and Joe Colquhoun.
AR has maybe 5 panels the width of the page.
Are they going for the widescreen look? I dunno.
It's not as though I don't like the idea of the story; witness the Reaper Files painted by Fay Dalton - they are great. It's just that bloody photoshoppery. For me that's sixteen pages that could be put to much better use with something else - reprint, small press contribution, interviews, anything.

Friday, 16 January 2015

Jikan - a few false starts, but the end is nigh

Regular readers of PARAGON (and I know you are both out there) will know that the third volume of the Jikan Chronicles was released before Christmas. What you may not know is that the story ends with book four and has already been written.

I can't wait to share it with you!


Did you know that originally Jikan was to be a three panel newspaper style strip? Once I was fortunate enough to get other (better) writers involved it span into an epic series of adventures but occasionally I brought it back to my original idea with the help of writer Matt Mcloughlin. And so we had the Kappa King story and the western Jikan Noon 

When the original story was published in PARAGON#2 the final panel had the samurai landing in 20th century traffic dodging cars. What I intended next was to have jikan take on a demonic underground Fight Club. I still think the idea of Jikan cage fighting demons in a New York basement is a great visual, but it was not to be.

There was also an unfinished 3 panel strip called Leviathan where Jikan was to take on an hellish Moby Dick. We got seven episodes into that until it faltered. I still hope to finish that one at some point (although certain frames need a serious redrawing) if I can get Matt to complete the scripts.

Another idea that I started writing but never got around to drawing was to have Jikan arrive at the court of King Arthur to find a demon controlling the throne under the guise of the mage, Merlin.
Of course, those of you who have read Book Three know that can't happen now - Merlin is somebody else. (Spoilers!)

Maybe one day we should have a fifth book of The Jikan Chronicles - The Untold Stories!

In the meantime, grab yourself a copy of Book Three while it's going cheap - only a £5 for over 80 pages of time travelling, demon hunting adventures!




Saturday, 3 January 2015

Annual vs Annual

You know, I went to my LCS today and bought the Marvelman Annual. $5. 
That's £3.50. 
For what amounts to a Grant Morrison piece of fan fiction from the 80s padded out to 11 pages by having a couple of splash pages. The rest is basically filler. Hell, the whole thing was. It's no wonder they shrink wrap this comic, otherwise folk would just stand and read it in the shop. It took about three minutes to read.

For less than a quid you could get this 68 page PARAGON annual which will engross you for ten times as long.
Grant Morrison was unknown when he wrote the Kid Marvelman story. There are no star contributors to this particular issue ofPARAGON but if you are a reader of Zarjaz you will know the names of a lot of folk who contributed to this annual; Jim Campbell, Greg Meldrum, Mark Howard, Matthew McLaughin, Stephen Prestwood, Dirk Van Dom and more.


99p for the digital version. So much more worth it than wasting more cash on fewer pages from the American Big Boys
Take the plunge and download a copy. At less than a quid it may well be the bargain you've been hunting for.