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John Allison

Small Press Expo Memories

The Small Press Expo is all about the art of the comics medium. Comics from every type of genre, style and format. It's the face of the comics medium without the distortion of the obsessive focus on the superhero genre most comic conventions would give you.

Plus, it's been well infiltrated by webcomics creators.

I spent all of Saturday at the convention this year and at times the floor was fairly crowded. Unfortunately since then I've been away in the Golden State and just didn't have a chance to write up a proper feature on it. So consider this a bit of a rambling remembrance of people, moments and most importantly, comics.

(And there's a lot of pictures after the jump so it'll take more than a second for the full page to load.)

Art styles: Old School vs New School

After my partner Monique and I updated our webcomic GAAK with the latest new page, a reader wrote the following comment and it was just one of those things that make you go "Hmm?":

"...I said it before and I'll say it again cuz I haven't seen this comic in a while. But this is pure brilliance missed out by a lot of people by the old school style. The sad thing is that you're like 100 times better than popular artists out there, but it's not flashy or anime cuteness..."

It made me wonder, if clothes make the man, do art styles make the webcomic? Do you as webcomic readers read the webcomcs you do more because of the art style that it's drawn in? Do you think the face of the growing anime/manga style juggernaut that "old school" comics/webcomics like GAAK and others suffer from a lack of "flash"?

Just wondering.


GAAK Online

That's the News And I Am Out Of Here (for a week)!

Hey all I'll be vacationing on an undisclosed spot of beach this week so the news will be in the trusty hands of Erik (aka Giant Panda). Be sure to submit some good stories for Erik to post. (Which reminds me - I had meant to, but forgot to post a link to Bob Stevenson's review of Erik's webcomic Vir Bonus.)

But before I'm gone here's a "Just About Out the Door" update:

John Allison hints at giving a tutorial on how he crafts the art for Scary Go Round. If I get a vote John - that would be so the opposite of boring, please go for it.

In "it came from blogland" Jason Kottke has a post about's failings from his perspective. Despite Kottke's post, Technorati is a great tool to use to find posts and other blog-like things. With the increase in rss and trackback in webcomics software it's also becoming a great tool to find webcomic-like things.

That's it for me for now. Have a great weekend!

Collegial Thursdays From Heck!!!

Good news! College Roomies from Hell!!! is back from hiatus. Creator Maritza Campos had one hellheck of a cute baby on July 7th and took some time off afterwards.

American Elf creator James Kochalka has a fan blog written by Alan David Doane that is Kochalkaholic! (thanks to bugpowder for the link).

John Allison ponders drawing versus computerin' webcomics art. As someone who has drawn and computered two of the more beloved webcomics, Allison knows what he's talking about.

Korsil reports that webcomics artists Kat Santoro (from Cat Legend) and Will Ritter (from That Guy) are going to be married on August 28th.

In sort of webcomics news, would it annoy folks if I pointed out that "That's Nothing Man" is the best idea Scott Adams has had in years? If Adams has to veer into the Adam Sandler school of humor to find the funny again, so be it.

And in not webcomics news, apparently Darth Vader has a posse (and Kit Fisto has meat dreadlocks).

Friday's Alright For Fighting... And Weeping

I really think John Allison ought to take some pre-order money on his card project rather than cancel it. Maybe this is an investment opportunity! It'd be a shame for this idea (and the SGR art) never to see the light of day...

Tom Spurgeon links to an article on Fanboy Radio (which is aired locally in Dallas TX as well as the 'nets).

Does anyone else see a little irony in getting a webcomic tattoo? These are pretty cool tats though - (I assume they're all real) especially the Clango one and the White Ninja one.

And don't forget to check out a few of the webcomics on Comixpedia's little ol' toplist. These webcomics are actually doing me a huge favor as I needed to better understand how this script works for a super-duper secret project I'm working on.

Sabertooth Games and Penny Arcade Partner for Card Game

Sabertooth Games announced that they were partnering with Penny Arcade to create a "Universal Fighting System (UFS)" game based entirely on characters from Penny Arcade. The card set is designed and illustrated by Gabe and Tycho and has everything from the "Divx" to Tycho's "Really Big Word".

In other card news, I'm not sure if John Allison has mentioned a date for the release of his Scary Go Round card deck but I definitely want one.

And Now Your Morning Webcomics News Update...

A great time was had by all at the Washington Webcomics Meetup last night. Chris, Phil, Jamie, Rob, Joey & Joe, T, and myself talked webcomics for a really long time. I heard a lot of interesting information, but these meetups are generally "off the record" (even webcomic journalists have some standards!) and I'll have to check back on whether there's anything I can report right now.

Bo Lindberg reports that the secret comics database continues to expand with the recent addition of Get Medieval. The "secret comics database" lets you search through the text of nine different web comics to find specific strips or characters. (Faciliatating the creation of text archives by the user (or fans) might be a nifty addition to the WebcomicsNation service.)

A new webcomics blog (link via Phil) called "Comics Rock" by Andrew Araki, looks like a good read. The most recent posts are on Fallen Angels, Used Books and Questionable Content.

Scott McCloud linked to someone writing about a bit of McCloud's theory of comics but from that site I found David Lasky's site with a small gallery of webcomics, including this adaption of a bit of Ulysses.

John Allison is almost done with the Scary Go Round deck of cards. I would like to own such a deck.

T Campbell and Eric Burns both have brief comments on Squidi's announced departure from webcomics. I second Burns' support for the very well thought out archive system employed by Squidi. ("Seasons" and thumbnail browsing might make nice additions to WebcomicsNation as well) But I take issue with Burns on Conrad. Joseph Conrad is the f&*kin' sh1znit of novelists IMHO.

Sheffield Wednesday In The House!

This week's series of news updates brought to you by Increasingly Odd References. Increasingly Odd References - we make the things that make you go, eh.

In blogland, there's a great post here with two interviews: one with John Allison of Scary Go Round and the other with Jeph Jacques of Questionable Content. Elsewhere, Srdjan has a lengthy review of Darken. Finally, check out the recent post from Occultatio where he checks in on Loserz, Schlock Mercenary and Bob The Angry Flower. (Speaking of BTAF, fans should check out Notley's annotated archives and examples of his other webcomic PopStrip at his site.)

Also, this is a bit odd - Drawn! blog points us to a scan of a strip where Charlie Brown and Lucy from Peanuts take a tour of a newspaper plant.

Whoa - Scott Kurtz getting spat on at Comicon? It was those dastardly Warp 9 To Hell guys! (W9TH also has a funny couple of strips on a webcomic Family Feud)

Wednesday Morning News Roundup

Digital Strips noted some days ago that Zoinks!, the webcomic magazine helmed by Bill Charbonneau, is returning to print (yes, it's a print magazine) in October and is accepting submissions.

Joey Manley has updated the Webcomics Nation website with descriptions of its features. For those of us that has been keeping an eye on the forums there seems to be no completely new features announced. But does anyone know if WCN's business strategy is completely reliant on advertising now or are there some kind of premium accounts?

UPDATE:Joey Manley has commented in this post clarifying the business strategy of WCN.

A blog by the name of Ponderance has interviewed both John Allison and Jeph Jacques. The questions cover both their webcomic businesses and interaction with their readership. Interesting stuff.

Penny Arcade has made another line of limited edition prints. 250 were sold at Comicon and 500 were available through their ThinkGeek store. The previous set of prints sold out in under eight hours and some later appeared on eBay. The second set became available through the store yesterday and sold out in under two hours. Each print was priced at 80 USD.

An Incomplete List of Webcomics in Print, Collated by Kelly J. Cooper

Many MANY of our webcomicking friends have published print versions of their work. I've tried to find, track down, and remember as many as possible. But given the thousands (tens of thousands?) of webcomics out there, this was a daunting task. If I missed your comic, I apologize profusely and profoundly. Please add it via a comment.