Sunday, December 31, 2017


2017. What a year... It has been quite the year in making comics and kids books. Learning the goods and bads of adapting and changing my setup at shows. Recovering from burning out on traveling and doing shows. Learning to believe in myself and my work again. And many, many, more things that are a little more private.

I want to thank everyone that ventures to this page on a regular, hell, or even ever so often. It's appreciated. Whether it's out of spite or love. Thank you.

I always dreamed since I was a little boy of making comics for a living and for the better part of my first ten years as an adult I was lost in doing so. It wasn't until I was let go from my shitty retail job in February of 2012 that I was doing conventions regularly enough that I had the chance to pursue this dream full time. I spent the better part of the following three and half years touring up and down the eastern coast hitting up as many shows as I could getting my name out there and living the life as a freelance artist. But eventually, like Icarus, I burnt out and fell crashing to the sea. Not to sound ungrateful, but the feeling wasn't there anymore. At least not in the way of making fun and interesting prints for people. The market became over saturated with people half as talented selling products that manipulated others work at a lower quality. And the consumers became more and more unaware and  uncaring to the craftsmanship of the piece and more into the character their child was looking to have framed on their wall.

I felt lost.

Helpless and hopeless to making new pieces that I would pour hours of my love into to only have looked over for a cheaper priced person with just the face of the character. And at many times, not even the actually artist setup selling them. Just gimmicky foot soldiers sent to whatever show they were told to squeeze more out of a market that was already becoming too crowded.

It wasn't until a year after we had moved into our current residence, along with the birth of my son, that I suddenly had a resurgence in making the art. Only this time it was in making comics again. For some reason it took a very long time to realize that I had gotten so far off course and rapped up in all the sparkle of touring and quick money that I forgot the main purpose - MAKING COMICS.

I needed to go back to making comics again. Books for myself. Things that I had loved and ideas that had been stirring around my head for years. This epiphany led to an explosion of creativity. For every old project revisited to revamp led to three more new ideas for it or completely new projects. I was beginning to start and stop comic pages for new ideas again just so that I could have them down on paper to eventually come back to making. The train had started and I couldn't stop it.

I was working on one book which led to creating another and tying the stories together into a universe. It led to making Kickstarters. Bringing in new and already existing fans to my own personal creator owned worlds of ideas. Not just popculture things from my childhood. My goal was to change my way of life from thinking in terms of worrying where I'll be next year, to creating something that can get me notice that will help build me for where I want to be in the next five.

And I feel that it is working.

When I started my new comic, A.A.I Wars, I set out with only a handful of rules:
1. MAKE IT COOL. A blast from the past of pop culture scifi and monsters. 2. KISS. Keep it simple stupid. I wasn't looking to make the next SANDMAN or become the next JIM LEE. I wanted to make a book that had the same love of comics that I had reading them as a child. Of course story and art ARE important and yes, I made sure to try and make a good story, but nothing ever too serious. and the last 3. HAVE FUN MAKING IT. That's all I wanted. To go back to making comics again and have fun doing it. Nothing where I felt tied down to it and needed to perfect every page or panel. Just have fun.

I took this drive and new found energy and decided that once I had finished the book that I was going to make a Kickstarter campaign to reach out to a new audience. One specifically looking for comics that you didn't normally find on the shelf at a comic shop. Something that you'd only be able to get from the creators themselves from the site or at a convention. When I launched the book. It was funded within the first 24 hrs. Blew my mind. This success only fueled the fire. As the end of 2016 was approaching, I set goals on myself to Kickstart and publish at least six more books by the end of 2017.

It wasn't only comics that I set out to change about myself, but also my table setup at shows too. If I kept with coming out with new books I had theorized that by the end of the 2017 year that my table setup should evolve and replace all the prints. Creating a whole new vibe and presentation that would be my indie comic artist table. I learned very fast how the attendees of conventions now a days are more into the popculture out look of things and not so much into comic books themselves. They love the movies and cartoons, but not enough to respect and read the comics that made those things possible.

This year has been quite the lesson in learning the goods and bads of adapting and changing for  shows. Going from making a large profit a few years ago, to making a decent profit a few years later, to now making enough to break even and hopefully a little more than usual. This punch to the gut would be something that probably two years ago would have made me throw in the towel and eventually get another boring shitty job that I never wanted to work.


Like Rocky Balboa, I'm learning to just keep getting back up and fighting... I've been progressively planning for the coming year, something I'm still learning to do. And for once in a long time I am very excited. My comic book, A.A.I Wars will have been picked up and getting published by a company I've known and loved for a very long time and am proud to be a part of, I'm getting more responses to being an actual guest at conventions as appose to being "just another print guy in artist alley", I'm starting a Patreon in February, a web comic the same month, and have plans for at least three new Kickstarters.

Of course to a degree I'm probably dreaming too big. Spreading myself too thin and trying to do too much too soon. But honestly, I think that's good. I believe it's what I need right now. It's certainly a lot healthier than going the other route and spreading myself too thin doing every show I possibly can to make a buck. If I can stick towards the goals listed above for the coming year, like I said before, I know it'll launch me into the right direction to putting me where I truly want to be by the next five.

So I leave you all now to return to my art so I can focus on the next comic idea to show you in the coming days, weeks, months, and years.

Have a safe and happy New Year's. See everyone in 2018~

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