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The Comics Experience Blog

Here you will find all the latest Comics Experience news and events! Check back often, or subscribe via RSS for updates!

Reminder: Sign up for May courses!

May is fast approaching, and with that start of two new Live Studio Experiences and our Introduction to Comic Book Writing course! Remember, our classes and workshops tend to fill up quickly. Make sure to register as soon as you are able

Advanced Coloring: Live Studio Experience – Starts May 8, 2017
Instructor Chris Sotomayor bio
Sign up here!

Advanced Art: Live Studio Experience – Starts May 24, 2017
Instructor Robert Atkins bio
Sign up here!

Introduction to Comic Book Writing – Starts May 24, 2017
Instructor Andy Schmidt bio
Sign up here!

See you in class!

If you want to make comics, write, draw, letter, and color comics, or improve as a comics creator, you’ll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Meredith Nudo

CE Alum David Pepose applies lessons to Spencer & Locke!

What if Calvin & Hobbes grew up in Sin City? That’s the intriguing premise behind Spencer & Locke, a new four-issue crime thriller written by Comics Experience alum David Pepose. Illustrated by Jorge Santiago, Jr, with colors by Jasen Smith and lettering by Colin Bell, Spencer & Locke #1 is available now through Action Lab Entertainment’s Danger Zone imprint.

Spencer & Locke started off as a dare Pepose made to himself: “Could we take a beloved children’s property, mash it up with a wildly different genre, and find new and interesting storytelling angles from that?”

But about two-and-a-half years passed from conception to published comic, he added, as Pepose and Santiago worked to put together a pitch, shop it around and find a home with Action Lab. During that time, Pepose said, he was able to apply the knowledge he gained through the Comics Experience courses and workshop.

“I learned tons of lessons at Comics Experience, but the most important simply was that it could be done,” Pepose said. “And that’s what I want anybody reading this to know — you can make comics. You can write them, you can draw them, whatever you want — you just have to have the desire to work, to learn, to try new things, to just do the work. It’s not magic, it’s a skill — and any skill can be learned if you just put the time and energy into it.

“It’s the short stories I wrote for my Intro to Comics class that were exactly what helped me build my confidence to write a single issue, to then write a four-issue arc, to maybe even write an ongoing series someday. Even my classes in Intro to Coloring or Intro to Comics Editing were crucial in teaching me how to work with my creative team and speak with them in their own artistic languages. Comics can be a tough industry to break into, and it can be challenging to find your own group of peers, and it’s the kind of feedback and mentorship I’ve gotten at Comics Experience that is absolutely the reason Spencer & Locke exists today.”

The twisted nostalgia of Spencer & Locke #1 is available now in comic shops and on digital devices!

Posted by Paul Allor


Wretched Things Collection Now on comiXology!

The first three issues of Devon Wong, Ken Perry and John Hunt‘s Wretched Things are now available for download on comiXology!

The miniseries follows the complex societies of all things creepy and crawly that live beneath the house. Devon and Ken credit Comics Experience for making the jump to comiXology.

“I’ve used ComiXology submit before for another project and there’s a whole submission and upload process, but CE streamlines it all. Pete [Rogers] has been tremendous over the whole run of Wretched Things,” says Devon.

Ken agrees. “That’s all E.T. Dollman on design, working his technowizardry, and Pete pulling strings. It frees us up to concentrate on just creating the books,” he says.

“Having the book next to other more mainstream stuff on the digital bookshelves helps make it legitimate, which helps potential readers take it more seriously as something they may want to actually spend money on,” he continues “So one part of it is reaching new audiences through the platform, and hopefully having some of those people recommend it to their friends.”

Devon adds, “We’re starting to put together all the pieces and planning logistics for a Kickstarter campaign to get Wretched Things into print, and we hope that having it up on comiXology already will actually help to encourage people to back it. It’s already published, already finished, so Kickstarter fulfillment will be a much quicker process, and there’s already the goodwill built by the fact that the series is done, so we only have to worry about getting rewards and the new print layout together.”

The team has some great advice for other creators who want to take the digital route, too.

“Nail down a proper template before creating any art. There are so many different sets of specs from different companies and printers. ComiXology is no different. Pre-lined bristol board was way off,” Ken says. “Every template I had was off, either too wide or too tall. It actually became a major problem with resizing pages for issue #1 and it was still a problem until part way through #2. During production for #2, we spent a day recreating templates until we got it to fit right.”

Devon adds, “I would also say find a good strategy to promote your work beyond comiXology.”

“If you cannot make your deadlines, let everyone know,” Ken says. “Be up front about it. It sucks, but it happens, so don’t sit on it. Be open with your team.”

You can download Wretched Things here.


Posted by Meredith Nudo

Comics Experience Introduces the Live Studio Experience

Color by Chris Sotomayor

Comics Experience is proud to introduce two new Live Studio Experience courses, Advanced Art and Advanced Coloring, designed for aspiring comic book artists who want to take their work to the next level. In these intensive online classes, students will develop their skills with a focus on individual goals and one-on-one feedback and instruction over the course of eight weeks.

Class sizes are limited to eight students who have previously taken Comics Experience’s Introduction to Comic Book Art and Introduction to Comic Book Coloring courses, respectively. This ensures students begin the Live Studio Experience with the same foundation of knowledge and allows instructors to give personalized feedback to each student in the weekly sessions and tailor instruction to reflect students’ needs. Students will also be able to interact with each other in dedicated online forums and review instruction with recordings of every session.

Both courses are taught by veteran comics artists, Chris Sotomayor and Robert Atkins, who will draw on their deep experience as both working professionals and as educators to build upon their acclaimed introductory courses. Each class will begin with an initial assessment of students’ skills and will progress with individualized feedback that students will get to apply to their developing work. Sotomayor and Akins will also offer advice for creative development and building a career in the comics industry.

Art by Robert Atkins

Advanced Coloring: Live Studio Experience will be taught by Chris Sotomayor (Nightwing, The Flash, The Hulk, Venom, Detective Comics, Avengers and many more). The course will cover basic anatomy, rendering techniques, storytelling, composition and more, according to the needs of the students. The eight-week course begins on May 8, 2017 and will meet one day a week from 9:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m. Eastern Time. For more information and to enroll, visit the course page here.

Advanced Art: Live Studio Experience will be taught by Robert Atkins (G.I. Joe, Snake Eyes, Amazing Spider-Man, Venom and many more). Subjects to be covered include anatomy and figure drawing, perspective and environments, and penciling techniques, plus more as needed by students. The eight-week course begins on May 24, 2017 and will meet one day a week from 9:30 p.m. until 11:30 p.m. Eastern Time. For more information and to enroll, visit the course page here.

If you want to make comics, write, draw, letter, and color comics, or improve as a comics creator, you’ll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Jennifer de Guzman

CE’s Paul Allor is Writing Secret Empire: Brave New World!

Comics Experience Paul Allor will be taking part in Marvel’s Secret Empire summer event! Joined by artist Brian Level, the companion series Brave New World will feature the debut of a brand new Patriot and reunites The Invaders against a Steve Rogers-led HYDRA.

Paul says, “I think fans of these characters are really going to dig it. I absolutely love the Invaders; they were the first thing that came to mind when Marvel approached me for ideas, and I’m so thrilled to see this story coming together — especially with such astounding collaborators as Brian Level and Jordan Boyd.

Also, writing Namor dialogue is about the most fun a comics writer can have.”

Issue one will also feature writing by Nick Kocher and Jeremy Whitley and art by Diego Orloteugi and Will Robson. On issue two, Paul and Brian are joined by Fabian Nicieza and Rodney Barnes on writing and Juan M. Frigeri and Tana Ford on art.

Paul’s work with Comics Experience and on other licensed properties helped prepare him for an event book, though the processes do differ between projects.

“Working in a shared universe is all about being flexible, and about finding a way to tell your core story — to keep your themes and your character work — while being willing to check your ego, and to change things up based on what’s happening in the other books,” he says.

And I’ve gotta say, my work on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles really prepared me for that. After five years of telling side-stories that tie in — sometimes very closely — to the main TMNT comic, maintaining that balance of flexibility and consistency becomes somewhat second nature.”

Read the Previews here and here. Make sure to preorder, too!


Posted by Meredith Nudo

Alum Chris Lewis’ “Karma Police” #1 Now On Sale from Vault Comics!

Wednesday, March 29 marked the in-store debut of Karma Police, a story about a compassionate monk-in-training who must confront the violence from her past lives. The first issue launches a four-part limited series, penned by Comics Experience alum Chris Lewis. Also on the creative team are artist Tony Gregori, colorist Jasen Smith, letterer and designer Nic J. Shaw (a former Creators Workshop member), and editor Nicole Boose. Tim Daniel and Mike Spicer also receive special thanks.

Karma Police’s journey to publication has roots in the Comics Experience Creators Workshop, where Chris posted an early version of the Karma Police #1 script for critique in 2010. From there, as Chris has told us, “all the current scripts were hammered into shiny shape by CE’s workshop warriors.”

After Chris fine-tuned each script and assembled a creative team to bring them to life, Karma Police launched as a digital series though Comics Experience and comiXology. The next step was a print collected edition, funded by a successful Kickstarter campaign.

Now, thanks to Vault Comics, Karma Police is available in comic shops everywhere! The publisher, which launched in 2016, selected Karma Police as part of its debut lineup, along with several other promising titles.

See what attracted readers and publishers alike to Karma Police – pick up a copy of issue #1 at your local comic store!

Congratulations to Chris and the Karma Police creative team!

If you want to make comics, write, draw, letter, and color comics, or improve as a comics creator, you’ll find like-minded friends and colleagues in our online workshops and courses. We hope to see you there!

Posted by Nicole Boose