The webcomics blog about webcomics

Beauty Beneath

Things are about today. Things and signs and portents!

  • Did I mention this already? I don’t think that I have. Jamie Noguchi (with a history in webcomics that goes waaaay back) is releasing the first book from his current (and best, in my opinion) project, ¥ellow Peril. Back to the Grind runs from the strip’s launch in February 2010 to early November of that same year (no link: spoilers), including the first eight story arcs. The only downside is that duration cuts off just before the introduction of maybe my favorite YP character, the Asian-American gay action/porn moviestar.

    The good news is that since early November of last year, Noguchi has completed eight more story arcs (and is midway through a ninth, on my favorite athletic activity), so presuming brisk sales on volume 1, he can hopefully get a second volume out to his demanding fans right quick.

  • You know which continent doesn’t get enough webcomics love? Well, Antarctica, actually — aside from the occasional T-Rex visit, no joy. But Australia, despite several nativegrown talents, Australian visits by creators from places far distant are pretty rare. Sure, Team Foglio, Howard Tayler¹, and a number of vision-impaired mustelids descended on the sunburned country last year, but it’s a rare sort of thing. Now we’ll see a visit Down Under by Scott and Kris (Kris and Scott) to host a program of orchestrally-performed videogame music with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. And, of course, Wil Wheaton. Those wishing to see Oz in April, this is your excuse.
  • Very short notice, to make up for the long notice on the Melbourne thing — Ryan North will be infiltrating the United States tomorrow, specifically to drink tea. Ryan’s announcement of the event says it’s at 4:00pm, but Yale seems to think it’s at 8:00pm? It’s probably at one of those two times, maybe! Most likely in the common room of Davenport College! That would appear to be around the corner from where Kate Beaton did the same thing earlier this year, so it appears if you want to have tea at Yale and you’re a webcomicker, it helps to be Canadian².
  • Received in the mail yesterday, the pack full of joy pictured up top, courtesy of the Canadianest Viking ever, Rene Engström. There a beautiful Anders Loves Maria print, and some minis, and a lovely watercolor of Engström and her sweetie, Rasmus Gran. It’s the last that really caught my eye, because as anybody that’s read Engström’s diary comics (from which the minis are drawn) or her parallel journal comic with Gran, So Far Apart, can tell you, it’s:
    1. Rene and Rasmus are absolutely, crazily in love/lust with each other
    2. Rene and Rasmus sometimes annoy the ever-loving shit out of each other

    That’s what I love about Engström’s work — the honesty. It’s easy to gloss over the little difficulties in your day, or to make your sweetie (or yourself) look better than circumstances might actually warrant. To show the unvarnished truth, the rough patches that exist in every life and relationship but which most wouldn’t want public? That’s a rare thing. It’s not exhibitionism, it’s purely a dedication to showing things as they are, metaphorical warts and all.

    When Engström asked what topic I’d like for the watercolor (part of a fund drive some time back) I immediately requested a portrait of her and Gran, because I knew she’d put all those emotions, all the positives and negatives into it, that it would be an object not just of artistic skill, but of beauty that could only be achieved by revealing all those layers. And damn, she knocked it out of the park.

    Also, she totally draws my moustache better than anybody else.

¹ My evil twin.
² Also, to be awesome.

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