What amazed me was the response I got from the Billy the Cat samples I sent.
The next afternoon I received a reply from the Beano ed. He liked the samples very much and offered me the chance of a slot in the Beano Annual 2011.
Awesome!! and even more awesome was the character I was given to work with...
General Jumbo. The school boy in charge of his very own remote controlled toy army. (Whoops, I shouldn't refer to them as toys.)
All this from my first proper pitch to an established title. Now it's been a long time in the making and I've spent years working towards this moment by creating my own comics and self publishing. I was overjoyed!
So to work. At that stage nothing was certain. There was a possibility Jumbo may not make it in the book at all due to restrictions on space. However I was up for the fight!
I've posted below a few of the sketches I sent through to try and win the editor over.
Well here we go, first post. It's been an interesting time for me work wise. I've been freelancing for nearly 6 years now, mainly producing design work for a large multimedia broadcaster. But I've also been skirting around the fringes of the UK comics scene.
I got into self publishing/small press comics about 5 years ago when I released a mini series called SAM119, which despite some big hurdles with distribution did pretty well.
I followed that up with appearances in FutureQuake and DogBreath fanzines which I hope to return to again at some point if they'll have me?
But where to next?
I had to ask myself the question how far do I want to go with comics, it's a notoriously difficult industry to break into and getting your work seen and taken seriously is a mammoth task in itself.
Or is it?
I suppose it comes down to the belief you have in your work and who you dare to show it to. Fellow artists will no doubt agree that you yourself can be your harshest critic. After some serious soul searching I decided to send some work off to some comic book editors...
First job was to scour the magazine racks and see what was out there. I decided early on that I wanted to focus on children's comics, you've got to go where you think you might fit. But now options are limited.
Now in my opinion the king of UK comics has to be the Beano. But I tend to draw in a more action and adventure style not immediately associated with the residents of Beanotown. Then I remembered a cool character called 'Billy The Cat'.
Having checked Billy was still in action I put together a quick sample to send off to the Beano Ed...