Monthly Archives: January 2016

We are now on Red Bubble

Ladies and Gentlegeeks we now have a range of merchandise available on our new red bubble store why not pop over and view our wares.

http://www.redbubble.com/people/swgeeksquad/shop

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January’s Recommend Read

New this year, we have decided to feature one graphic novel a month to showcase what we believe is a great, recommended read.
This month the book we are featuring is a masterpiece of story writing and art work. The talents of Scott Snyder, Francesco Francavilla & Jock really shine in this epic Batman tale.
In The Black Mirror, a series of brutal murders pushes Batman’s detective skills to the limit and forces him to confront one of Gotham City’s oldest evils. Helpless and trapped in the deadly Mirror House, Batman must fight for his life against one of Gotham City’s oldest and most powerful evils!
Then, in a second story called “Hungry City,” the corpse of a killer whale shows up on the floor of one of Gotham City’s foremost banks. The event begins a strange and deadly mystery that will bring Batman face-to-face with the new, terrifying faces of organised crime in Gotham.
This volume collects Detective Comics 871-881.
This is our recommended read for January – a classic book that will really excite and enthrall the reader.
Please let us know what you think.

January hotspot pt 1

This month, we are starting a new feature on the SDGS page, as announced late last year. We are running a monthly ‘Hotspot’ feature, to showcase some of the hidden gems and talents the South West has to offer.
This month we are kicking off with a special double feature:
We would like to introduce to you GNASH Comics and Graphic Novels, and also local comic artist and illustrator, Lee O’Connor.
So let’s start with Gnash:

1) Please introduce yourself and your business to our readers
Gnash Comics & Graphic Novels is an independent shop for the many comics fans of south Devon! Our aim is to stock the most interesting comics and graphic novels from all levels of the comics scene, all over the world! Our mature graphic novels section is unrivalled outside of, say, Soho, but we have a children’s and teens section too and new comics arriving every single week from the United States. We also do art books, prints and games too. We’re always putting on events like signings and panels with comic creators as well as hosting workshops for people to have a go themselves.

2) When did you first start doing this? What led you into this area of work?
We’ve always been interested in comics ever since we could read and that never went away. There are stories being told in comics, the like of which you don’t find anywhere else, and it’s up to us to get them out there, into people’s hands so they can see the incredible things people are doing with this medium.

3) Give us one unusual interesting fact about yourself.
We sell to some famous people too y’know… We’ve had Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and John le Carre in the shop going mad over the graphic novels…

4) Do you have any plans or special events coming up that our readers would want to know about?
We’re relaunching our online shop: we’re now doing our online shop listings in advance, so you can order your American comics and collections before they’ve even reached our shores!
Elsewhere, we’re now of a high enough level on the Wizards of the Coast Play Network to give people previews of new Magic: The Gathering sets before they’re on general release! We also have unique goodies and lots of different free promo cards to give away for coming to Gnash and playing Magic. February brings our next How-to-Draw Manga workshop with manga book author Keith Sparrow and our Storytime events for kids under five will be continuing too. So it’s all happening, just as usual.

5) if you weren’t doing what you do, what do you think you might be doing instead?
Somewhere behind a big pile of comics and graphic novels, just reading them instead of selling them!

6) Who is your favourite superhero or character and why?
I think it’s got to be Ms Marvel for being so groundbreaking; a young teenage, female, Pakistani-American superhero! Everybody loves her and we’re no different. Captain Marvel – Carol Danvers – is a close second: she’s the young-professional air-force pilot who goes into space! Oh and there’s Spider-Gwen too, Gwen Stacey with spider powers (and trouble finding gigs for her band). And Batgirl… Hang on, we were only supposed to go for one, weren’t we?

7) What is your guilty pleasure?
There are no guilty pleasures in comics! If I had to dig around I’d say the ‘Garbage Pail Kids’ comics from IDW for being so lewd, but they’re so well done. It’d be like we’re putting them down, which we would never do.
A genuine guilty pleasure is the Moondog CD next the Gnash stereo…

8) Who do you most admire and why?
The folks who blazed a trail, selling indie and small press comics and graphic novels in ‘bricks-and-mortar’ shops. All of the creators out there, whether they’ve just inked a Hollywood movie deal or are just stapling their first home-made mini comic. They’re the ones keeping us all going: thank you ladies and gentlemen.
Please check them out on Facebook, Twitter (@Gnashcomics) & at http://www.gnashcomics.co.uk.

January Hotspot pt 2

This month, we are starting a new feature on the SDGS page, as announced late last year. We are running a monthly ‘Hotspot’ feature, to showcase some of the hidden gems and talents the South West has to offer.
This month we are kicking off with a special double feature:
We would like to introduce to you GNASH Comics and Graphic Novels, and also local comic artist and illustrator, Lee O’Connor.
So let’s continue with Lee O’Connor:

1) Please introduce yourself and your business to our readers
Hello, I’m Lee O’Connor and I’m a comic artist and illustrator. You might have seen my artwork in an Image comic, Heavy Metal magazine or the ‘Power of Five’ graphic novel series from Anthony Horowitz and Walker Books, or any of the other anthologies or indie titles I’ve been involved in.

2) When did you first start doing this? What led you into this area of work?
Easy. I started drawing when I was one year old. I didn’t stop. I don’t plan on stopping any time soon. I wondered about whether to go into animation or illustration for college and plumped for the non-moving artwork choice because it seemed easier to get things finished. Plus comics were cool man! You had to go to a special shop or a convention to get them back then!

3) Give us one unusual interesting fact about yourself.
If every single project that I’d been attached to as artist got off the ground, past the pitching stage, or finally made it to the printing press, I’d be some kind of folk hero, possibly with a globe-spanning reputation rivalling that of Kim Jong Il. But that’s just how it works when you’re a freelancer or Work-For-Hire artist! (And I hope I don’t sound bitter or anything here, it is an amazing line of work!)

4) Do you have any plans or special events coming up that our readers would want to know about?
After many years of talking about it but not really producing anything serious, I’ll be starting to write my own long-form graphic novel soon!

5) if you weren’t doing what you do, what do you think you might be doing instead?
If I couldn’t tell stories with pictures, I’d have to tell them with words; I’d be a writer. Maybe even a comic writer, heh. Full prose would be a bit intimidating, but maybe I could have been a journalist. Either that or help put on decent comic conventions!

6) Who is your favourite superhero or character and why?
(Brace yourself here because I’m about to sound even more pretentious than I do normally:) I’m not really into Superheroes… Growing up, I liked Batman (Azrael and the Knightfall saga), read the ‘Death of Superman’ story and liked the Spider-Man comics in the local newsagents. If he qualifies as a superhero, I’ll go for Nemesis the Warlock by Pat Mills from 2000AD: an alien wizard whose goal is to defeat the evil human race! (While zooming around the galaxy in a spaceship that’s the same shape as his head!) If we’re allowed super-teams, I’ll go for his compatriots The ABC Warriors: seven disparate war-droids out to save civilisation! In terms of straight super-heroes, it’s probably got to be Marvel’s ‘The Silver Surfer’: Stan Lee under the impression he’s writing Hamlet in Space and gorgeous artwork from John Buscema. I was first turned onto this character by being into the French comic artwork force that is Moebius, he drew a great standalone story called ‘Parable’ with artwork so good you could put it into a capsule, shoot it into space and convince Galactus to not destroy our planet.
Oh and there’s a really good Batman short story in ‘Batman Black and White’ by Katsushiro Otomo (he of ‘Akira’) called ‘The Third Mask’ which is pretty much the only Batman story ever to actually play around with – and alter – the Bruce Wayne/Batman identity thing to a really startling result. I think the best superhero stories are the short and interesting ones that almost happen by accident and unrepentantly try and do something out-there with the character.

7) What is your guilty pleasure?
In terms of comics? Oh man. Many. I’m gonna say that there probably shouldn’t be any guilty pleasures in comics because every comic creator has pulled themselves up by their own collar to the point where they’re good enough to see their work in print, so comics as a medium can’t have any turkeys in it. The ‘Tenjo Tenge’ manga by Ogure Ito (“Oh Great” onomatopoeically) could qualify though: it’s like the Bash Street Kids only with kung-fu, martial arts, loads of unnecessary T&A, pointless things happening in the story just because they’re cool… And’s it’s really well drawn.

8) Who do you most admire and why?
I think I have to harken back to my previous answer a bit: anyone and everyone in comics who’s seen their work in print. Every single one of those people has put so much hard work into their artwork or writing (or colouring, or lettering, or editing!) off their own back over the course of years (years!) to hone it and we’re all the richer for it. Comics doesn’t really run on pots of cash, but the sheer love and passion that people have just pulse around the comics scene like some kind of excitement-filled bloodstream.
I should also shout out all of the artists that have inspired me over the years – there’s loads of them – I can pull a few names out; Eduardo Risso, Dave McKean, Mike Mignola, Frank Miller, Bill Sienkiewicz… But that’s just the very tip of the arty Iceberg.
Meanwhile, I also need to express my admiration to the local artists around here; Jock, Dom Reardon, John Spelling, Lee Garbett, Henry Flint, Ron Tiner, Rob Cross… and more, we all live in a fantastic place for comic art and I have truly benefited greatly from the inspiration and companionship.
Lee can be found on the usual social media or http://www.leeoconnor.com