Indie Comics Showcase #120: Clay-Man, Driver.Eight & the Myth Butcher

 

 

Welcome back to another installment of Indie Comics Showcase, the weekly blog where we signal boost a few truly independent comics that are currently crowdfunding their projects, crowdsourcing their funding in some way, or just completely self-publishing on their own. Every little bit of support for these creators matters, from a single dollar pledge to the twenty-five dollar bundle, and of course the higher tiers are usually fun too! Even if you can’t back a campaign or buy a book, you can share or tweet about these projects to your friends and followers. 

 

On Indie Comics Showcase, we interview the creators, show off some art, and tell you how you can check out the product for yourself. Below we have some outstanding crowdfunding campaigns this week for you to learn about, enjoy, and hopefully support by backing one or more of them! Thanks for checking these out and for being the best part of Indie Comics Showcase. Let’s jump in!

 

Clay-Man
by Robert Pisko

Check out the campaign here!

 
Chris Braly: Tell us about Clay-Man. What’s the story?
 
Robert Pisko: “In a world where peace has been established and technology/mankind has evolved, one kid must fend off the new oncoming threat that is mutants. Using his own mutant powers the smiling ray of hope, the red jokester, the almighty Clay-Man will save them! Have no fear! Clay-Man is here!”

 
I got the plot summary here: 16 year old Bobby “Rob” Radish hails from the futuristic city of Futorica in the year 2118, hes got it all. A nice foster family, a great school, a good friend, and a whole city to explore. But when he comes to face to face with a mutagenic bomb blowing up on him, he becomes a super mutant teen extraordinaire! With his new found abilities and powers he must put them to work to fight the ever growing mutant horde and rogue criminals that threaten his city.
 
 
 

CB: What was the genesis for this project, where did the idea for this comic come from, and what led to you deciding to crowdfund it? Where did the idea for a crossover come from?

RP: I was working out in the basement of my house, a hot sweat going, I just wanted out of the blue to make my own comic book, my friends were doing it and I felt I wanted too now. For main ideas I got inspired by Batman Beyond, The Maxx, Spider-Man 2099, and My Hero Academia. For the crowdfund question a LOT of good people were begging me to do this and I finally caved best decision I ever made. For the crossover comic Nicholas was actually the one to come up with it first, I just went along with it making the script for it and such, the rest was history.

 

 

 

CB: Let’s get into the creative and production side a little. Tell us a bit about your creative team that have contributed to this project?

RP: Excluding me as the writer/creator of this, we got my boi Jared Ballinger AKA Merci501 on twitter whos my editor, dude does a lot of things but him as an editor is an amazing talent on its own. Zhao Chunlin AKA SkySunnyMq on twitter is the artist/colorist of the one-shot and her coloring is GODLIKE on the indie comics industry, I’m very happy I was able to get her. Finally for the one-shot project I got Micah Myers, you guys probably know him around and I say his lettering is really good and fit the tone what I wanted for the one-shot. A++. Nicholas Raven Mueller was my artist/colorist/letterer for the crossover and he does a fantastic job with everything he did for the crossover, and his stuff is getting better as time goes on!

 

 

 

CB: What’s the workflow like? How do you like to work?

RP: Workflow usually is pretty good! If I wanna get a script done in a certain amount of time I can do it! As for my work flow I can tell you three words: Music Chair Spin. I like to blast music and spin on my chair while I work, I know it sounds weird but its a creative thing I do to keep the brain pumping while I work.

 

CB: What have you been learning from crowdfunding and creating through this process?

RP: I can tell you this: A lot of the pressure can come off ya if you listen to experienced pros whos done it before and you work with people who’ll take the pressure off. Right now I’m happy promoting the comic and people feeling confident I can dish out the physical issues of Clay-Man in good time.

 

CB: Thanks for chatting with us! Good luck and we are rooting for you!

RP: Thanks man!

Check out the Clay-Man campaign here!

 

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The Myth Butcher
by Danny Gorny

 

 

Chris Braly: Tell our readers your elevator pitch for The Myth Butcher.

Danny Gorny: The Myth Butcher is James Bond meets Cryptids, set in the early years of the 20th century. Expect globetrotting adventures set amidst real historical events, in the world that existed before wars changed everything.

As Col. D Edward Jordan completes missions to secure the safety of the British Empire, he finds himself waylaid by a series of increasingly weird monsters.

 

 

CB: What was the genesis for this project, where did the idea for this comic come from, and what led to you deciding to crowdfund it? Where did the idea for a crossover come from?

DG: The genesis for this project came when I was researching various cryptids to write a pitch for an anthology. One listing on Wikipedia’s “List of Cryptids” page that caught my eye read “Name: Dingonek. Description: Jungle Walrus.” It just sent my mind spinning in the story possibilities. After reading the original accounts, I felt the story demanded more to it than a mere encounter with a strange beast, which is how the 007-style framework was born. That led me to more research, which uncovered other story possibilities that happened around that same time in history, including the search for the Northwest Passage, and the strange politics of the Pontine Marsh reclamation project. As that first short was in production, I found myself writing a second one, and then a third, until I ended up with the collection I’m kickstarting now.

Crowdfunding was an obvious choice for The Myth Butcher. It’s hard enough to find a traditional publisher for a one-shot comic. It’s even harder when there are three different illustrators involved. The art came out so well that I couldn’t just keep these stories on my hard drive, and I was confident there would be an audience for it. The success of the campaign so far shows I was right.

CB: What kind of comic fans do you expect this comic will entertain the most? 007 fans only?

DG: I think this book is great for fans of globetrotting adventures and weird monsters. I mean, come on, “Jungle Walrus”? It’s just silly enough to be awesome. For younger readers, the stories contain action and tension, but they also teach about some real historical events and circumstances, almost like Tintin through the looking glass. When you also consider how the pandemic restricted people’s ability to travel, it just felt right to showcase the world in a positive light.

CB: Let’s get into the creative and production side a little. Tell us a bit about your creative team that have contributed to this project?

DG: The creative team on this project has been great, and they’re the people who inspired me to keep on writing while pages came in. Daniel Caval is an illustrator from Brazil, with two years’ experience working for the indie community. He’s run two successful crowdfunding campaigns for his book Heroes Act, so I know he knows how to finish projects. Alessia Gasperini is an Italian illustrator with credits on “Milkshake” and “Antibiotici Esagerati,” and I managed to hire her to draw a story shortly before she had her son. And Nico Gamboa is a Fine Arts student from Manila whose work looked promising when I saw what he posted online.

 

On top of all their brilliant work, the book truly came together thanks to Berril Vargas, who’s married to Felipe Obando (the colourist for my graphic novel, Sleepwalkers). Felipe told me Berril was looking to get into colouring comics, and her work made the book truly feel like a complete vision.

For the crowdfunding campaign, we got some extra support with Kayla Byrne’s delightful sexy monster pin-ups. I reached out to her directly for the commissions, and she delivered an even better product than I expected.

 

 

CB: What’s the workflow like? How do you like to work?

DG: I come from an old-school production background, so I prefer work in discrete phases. Once I wrap a script I’m happy with, I’ll look for illustrators. We’ll develop the art through concepts, thumbs, pencils and inks, and then I ship the complete pages off to the colourist. Once those are done, we repeat the process with the letterer. I lettered this book myself, so that was me.

In general, I find it hard to edit pages as they’re being developed if they’re coming at me from every direction in various phases of completion. I’m usually working on a few projects at a time, so it’s important for me to be able to focus on making each story the best it can be.

CB: What have you been learning from crowdfunding and creating through this process?

DG: For this book, I learned how to work with five new artists, which I’m sure is going to show dividends the next time I work with someone new. And I’m currently developing a new project with Daniel. Every new artist you work with teaches you how to direct art even better next time. I learned a ton this year on how to do comics lettering, too.

On the crowdfunding side of things, I learned there’s a degree to which you need to just trust that your project is good enough. If you look around to see what’s on the market and you’re still confident in your product, you always learn something from how people respond to it. For this book, I think the clear pitch and the quality of the art help make the book shine through with a fun attitude. Given the kind of year we’ve all just had, I think it’s landed.

 

 

Check out the campaign for The Myth Butcher here!

 

 

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Driver.Eight
by Jerry Jones

Check out the campaign here!

 

Chris Braly: Tell our readers your elevator pitch for Driver.Eight. Briefly tell our readers what’s up.

Jerry Jones: Driver.Eight is a near-future science fiction comic set aginst the backdrop of humanity’s last days. Think The Matrix meets Men in Black meets Deep Impact meets The Prophecy meets more of The Matrix (but not the crappy sequels).

 

 

CB: How did you first get into this and how did it lead to this?

JJ: I started working in comics with Jeremy Haun back in the 90’s, self-publishing under Mantle Press a title called “Locke and Lode.” I’ve loved comicbooks all my life, and with the state of the industry nowadays, I wanted to put out a book that I would want to read- part nostalgia mixed in with good writing and no agendas other than to entertain the reader.

 

 

CB: Where did the idea for Driver.Eight originate?

JJ: Perhaps not suprisingly, the song Driver 8 by R.E.M.. I took the feeling of loneliness the train conductor and driver felt and built the story up from there, incorporating the same sense of lonlieness and isolation into the main character. The comic has nothing to do with trains, by the way. 😉

 

 

CB: What kind of comic fans do you expect this comic will entertain the most?

JJ: Anyone who misses the old Vertigo-style, letter columns, and a time when comics were just fun and kept you on your toes and weren’t just advertisements for movies or props for social ajendas rather than entertainment. Also, anyone who enjoys near-future science fiction, Biblical apocalyptic-inspired fiction, and not having their intelligence and loyalty insulted.

 

CB: Tell us a bit about your creative team / other creators that have contributed to this?

JJ: My co-creator/artist is Jorge Gabotto, whom I’m not entirely sure isn’t a robot due to the massive amount of work he puts out. He’s a great artist to work with and is responsible for expanding the scope of the science fiction elements beyond what I first envisioned. His style lends itself so perfectly that I keep coming up with more robots and technology for him to draw. I do a couple of the variant covers, and this time around we have up-and-coming artists Sandra Koehl and Joe Scott doing covers, as well. Previously, we had Natasy Novy and DC Comics’s cover artist Rudy Ao do covers. On the promotion section, I’ve got the best hype-man in existence, Anthony Moore, owner of Limitless Comics.

 

CB: How far along is the project? Ready to begin fulfillment?

JJ: I’m proud to say that it’s 100% done, so barring another pandemic, civil war, or ninja invasion, this will go straight to the printer two weeks after the campaign ends. I’m proud to say the book is 100% done, so there will not be a long fulfillment wait. There’s nothing I can’t stand more than having to wait and wait and wait and wait for a book, and that’s the last experience I want my readers to have. The books will go to the printer as soon as the Kickstarter funds are deposited.

 

CB: What else are you learning from crowdfunding and creating through this process?

JJ: Back in the day when I first started, Diamond was the only way to get your comics in front of readers, and then you had to pray that a comic shop wanted to order your book. But now thanks to crowdfunding, creators have such a wider audience they can reach and would have never reached going through traditional channels. It also helps creators connect with their readers more intimately than before.

 

 

CB: Thanks for chatting with us! Good luck and we are rooting for you!
JJ: Thanks for having me! And remember kids, in the words of one of the greatest philosphers of our time, “if women don’t find you handsome, they should at least find you handy.”

 

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That’s it for this installment! Support indie comics!!!

 

 


Follow Indie Comics Showcase on Twitter at @Indie_Comics and reach out to them if you want us to consider featuring YOUR crowdfunding comic project!

 

Chris Braly

I'm a collector, a speculator, and one opinionated, based geek. My friends call me Braly, but those who know me within the hobby generally refer to me as Bralinator. I can be heard monthly on the Comic Book Page Previews Spotlight podcast with several other comic book nerds. Follow me on Twitter @ChrisBraly

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