Tuesday, 28 January 2014

FROM THE ARCHIVES - UNPUBLISHED COMIC STRIP...



My first-ever strip appeared in my local newspaper around 1975
or '76, I think.  (I'm sure it pre-dated my GORDIE GOOSE full-page
strip in the BOOTS NEWS.)  It was called EK KID, consisting of a single
tier of three panels, and earned me £5.  To be honest, it wasn't very good,
but hey, a fiver back then wasn't to be sniffed at.  Mr. ERIC BARR (now
sadly deceased) was the discerning editor who tried to encourage a
relatively recent school-leaver in developing his talents.

By 1984, my latest creation - PERCY PROON - EK's No 1
LOON - had already made a couple of appearances in the local rag,
so I produced a third helping for possible publication.  It was rejected for
being "Too verbose and too violent", 'though this could simply have been
Mr. Barr's coded way of saying it just wasn't very funny.  I never got a chance
to do any more, for later that same year I met IPC's STEVE MacMANUS
at a Glasgow comic mart, who promised me some lettering work on 2000
A.D.  A couple of months or so later, at the beginning of '85, my full-
time career working for the 'big guns' had begun.

However, that wasn't the last to be seen of Percy.  When I was
re-sizing strips for the WHIZZER & CHIPS and BUSTER comic
libraries, I would often draw in 'EK's No 1 Loon' to fill up space.  (There
are a few examples below).  Regarding the above strip, it was drawn with  a
felt-tip marker and lettered with a fountain pen, and is a nice, clean, nothing
brilliant drawing.  If I were doing it today, I'd vary the thickness of the
outlines and give the characters circles around their eyes, because
'dots' alone restrict facial expression to some degree.

Anyway, the above strip has finally made its debut after thirty
years of languishing in a cupboard.  Hope you like it.  (First one to
say "You should've left it in the cupboard" gets slapped!)




3 comments:

TwoHeadedBoy said...

Those cameo bits are funny - kids at the time might've thought they were going mad seeing this weird dot-eyed boy everywhere.

What did the other artists have to say about that?

Kid said...

The artists who had originally drawn the strips probably never even saw the reprints with my 'extras', THB, as they were years old when they were resized for the comic libraries. There was one other guy doing the resizing, but I don't think I ever met him more than once, if at all. He just extended the lines to fill panel resizing, he didn't add any 'actual' art. At one time, letterer Bill Nuttall did some resizing, but I don't know if he was working on them at the same time as me or not.

Kid said...

On reflection, I think I did meet that other resize artist once, in passing, but only that one time.

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