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2010 SKETCHBOOK (60 pages, black/white/tone, print run 100 copies)


Monday, June 09, 2008

Archaia Studios Press (ASP) Restructuring

No blog of a struggling new comic book artist can avoid having at least one entry devoted to the publishing aspect of comics. I have been very fortunate that Robotika was picked-up by Archaia from the first go around. Mark Smylie and Aki Lao, who selected Robotika to be part of ASP's initial line-up, are two of the most up standing guys I ever done business with, and after dealing with them for a few months, I started trusting them completely.

When the first mini series was published, ASP published 3 books: Artesia, Mouse Guard and Robotika. Now, three years later, ASP has more than 25 titles in their catalogue...that is not counting all the special collections and reprints. It was pretty awesome to see how Mark and Aki have built the company up.

From what I understand, Aki has decided to move on from ASP to pursue other endeavors. Change is part of life, and I am sure the fact that Aki works full time and has a wonderful family that he wants to spend as much time as possible, all contributed to his decision.

While Aki and Mark are trying to figure out how to fairly restructure the company, the publication of Robotika is suspended. This of course is a bummer, because I am very eager to share the last 100 or so pages of new material, but I am very hopeful that everything will work out just fine. ASP is continuing to do pre-press on issues 2 and 3, and I am almost done with issue #4 (the cover of which has already been colored by Joel Chua). In fact, the silver lining of this news is that I will be totally done with all the art and writing on the whole series before it will be published and I will be able to focus on trying to promote it.

Someone asked me if it is possible that Robotika will never be published...I guess so. Lots of weird unexpected things happen all the time and I am sure there are lots of comics that have been completed that never saw the light of day. I do trust ASP to come through this "restructuring" healthy and able to put out the rest of the books under their banner. I guess I'll just have to wait and see :)

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


San Jose now has a comic book convention. I believe it was the same show that started in Oakland a few years back, but has now been held at the San Jose Convention Center for the second time. I hope it continues here and I am planning on getting a table next time around.

I did not go this time, but I got to have lunch with Ryan who drove down to attend. We had lunch and ended-up talking comics for a few hours. Ryan also showed me an antique book illustrated by Franklin Booth called "Flying Islands of the Night". Michelle found it for Ryan and was able to buy it with out having to take out a huge loan. It is one of the few books that showcases Booth's color illustrations...and he was as good with color as he was with a line. Simply beautiful work and it sparked a talk about some old school illustrators that was real fun.

Ryan was also kind enough to show me some of his latest work. I was blown away by the story that he has done for the Top Cow's "First Born" storyline, featuring Magdelena. Ryan's covers are awesome, but I originally fell in love with his story pages (from Arkham Asylum) so it is a real pleasure for me to see his new panel-to-panel work. This is going to be a great story and I am waiting to see it piblished.

After talking to Ryan about sorytelling and rendering I walked away being totally excited about drawing...I was also reminded about how hard it is to be a professional artist. Even though Ryan is always positive and very upbeat about everything, I imagine it must be hard (at least it would be hard for me) to wake-up every day and be "on". By "on", I mean being able to draw, draw well, and draw whatever someone put infront of you. Something like that could be a real challenge.

Some new pages: