Sunday, November 13, 2011

STANLEY AWARD WIN FOR UNCLE SILAS: GENETIS


All those years of hard work slaving away on Uncle Silas: Genetis in my lonely artist's garret (ok, so maybe not, I was slaving away in the Watermark studio in Sydney) won me a Stanley Award for Comic Book Artist on Saturday night at the 27th Australian Cartoonists Association awards night in Sydney.
And what a night! Well, what a weekend, really...

The ACA run a conference the whole weekend with guest speakers and events and I was lucky enough to be invited to chat on a talking panel with Tim McEwen and Jozef Szekeres about Australian comics and graphic novels and the industry. Tim gave a great introduction showcasing Australian creators and artists that gave those uninitiated some idea of the talent out there, Jozef talked about his fantastic work and what a labour of love it is, and I babbled about my own gear for newspapers and my graphic novel.

This was followed up by questions from MC Jules and the audience and we gave our thoughts and impressions on the amazing talent pool in Oz and how damn hard it is to keep up with the volume of work being produced. The issue of being able to hunt them all down considering the disparity of the DIY minicomic movement and the lack of an Australian based distributor of comics was touched on, as was the accessibility of so many comics and graphic novels thanks to the internet.

Australian publishers such as Black House Comics, Gestalt and Allen & Unwin were discussed as were their agendas. I recommended to the ACA that they get these people in next year to have their own panel forum discussion- that would be terrific to listen to.

Ron Cobb was the headlining guest speaker over the 2 days and he gave wonderful anecdotes on his experiences both in cartooning for newspapers as well as his production design work for movies such as Conan, Back to the Future, Star Wars, Alien and more.

Nat Karmichael gave a very unique talk on Jon Dixon's incredibly popular newspaper strip Airhawk; Reg Mombassa was another guest speaker and Jordan Verzar gave an illuminating talk on his work with GRAPHIC, the comic book festival/event held every year at the Sydney Opera House. Jordan told of the whole Robert Crumb vs Jesse Phillips case and the incredibly devious libelous lengths the News Ltd hack went to for the sake of selling some newspapers that led to Crumb cancelling his trip to Australia to be interviewed by Gary Groth on stage. Not helped by news people repeatedly harassing Crumb and his family over the phone for the sake of comment. No surprises he didn't come to Australia. There were plenty of other guest speakers and talks but I wasn't able to make them all unfortunately (sorry Anton and Eric!)

The Awards dinner was a fun affair and it was great catching up with buddies. Good mate Anton Emdin won 2 stanleys on the night, not surprisingly one of them was the gold Stanley for Cartoonist of the Year. He'd also picked up a Reuben Award in America earlier in the year (the first Australian to do so) and it was a safe bet he'd get some Stanley lovin' back home.

The Comic Book Art category is in its second year in the ACA and being able to submit Uncle Silas into it was a treat. Australia's got some killer talent in the comic creating field and I feel pretty lucky to get a gong this year. Once the rest of Australia's comics crowd catches up with this particular Stanley award the competition is just going to keep getting tougher and tougher, so I feel pretty bloody fortunate to get this one while I could!

A huge thank you to all the ACA peoples who made the weekend happen. Next years Stanley Awards promises to have Gerald Scarfe as a headlining guest speaker, so that should be worth going to.
Unless Jesse Phillips gets wind of it and manages to get him to cancel as well...


Friday, July 29, 2011

UNCLE SILAS: EARTH begins...

Arts SA are a lovely, generous bunch. They've given me a grant to produce the first draft of the sequel graphic novel Uncle Silas: Earth. I'll be working on that over the next several months, collating my research, writing and storyboarding simultaneously approximately 160 pages of action, drama and sci-fi fun.

I won't be hindered by the Sunday Newspaper format for this one, so I'm going to let rip with the page layouts and design. Scenes will breathe on the page and fill out as their needs require, which is something I'm very much looking forward to doing. I can't wait to finish this book!!

As for what's going to happen in this story? You'll just have to wait and see, but I can tell you this much: The only constant in this universe is change. Oh, and there'll be more monsters than in book 1, you can be sure of that!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

UNCLE SILAS FOR YOUR iPAD AND iPHONE


Uncle Silas: Genetis is finally available to buy as a downloadable graphic novel from Dark Horse Digital!
Simply click the link and create an account, or download the Dark Horse Comics app from iTunes and then buy the book. For Australian readers it's $3.99.

I haven't seen it yet on an iPad, but considering how good it looks on my iPhone I'm sure it looks even better. I found the best way to read the pages were up close and rotating the iPhone to a landscape format. The navigation controls are super simple to use which is a huge bonus.
A welcome surprise was discovering the various 'reveals' as the panels popped up. Some of the panels read so well in this medium.
DH are also offering a HUGE range of free comics to tempt the curious so what are you waiting for? Check it out already!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

GROTESQUE PROCESS

Here are the various stages of the final art for Grotesque Love.
From the black and white linework through to full colour.
I start with blocking the shapes, all in their own layers in their own named folders so I know what's where. So the Stonework, girl, guy and background are all in separate folders. Each new effect and glow or underlighting etc is created in a new layer within those folders. I end up with about 50 or 60 more layers with this image. Sounds like a lot but it's incredibly useful when I change my mind about how I want a colour scheme to change with a certain effect and it can really save time.
The downside is I end up working with a 300mb file that can take a while to save.
Some of the covers for the Week magazine that I do end up being 450mb+.
Super fun when it comes to deadline time, and my computer starts to sloooowww down in processing.
Enjoy!









GROTESQUE LOVE

Every year Peter from Pulp Fiction Comics organizes INSTANTANEOUS (this year marks number 7) a charity auction of original comic art at the Grace Emily Hotel here in Adelaide.
A fantastic event, and so far these auctions have raised over $20,000!
Feeling at a loss for what to do, but not feeling like drawing up Uncle Silas characters (and time consuming foliage in particular!) I scribbled some ideas and eventually came up with this one: Grotesque Love.
Grotesques are carvings in stone of characters and monsters that don't have any other function apart from cosmetic. You'll see them on old churches, gothic buildings etc. They're distinct from Gargoyles in that Gargoyles have a function: to act as drainpipes ejecting rain water run off.
Obviously, 'Gargoyle Love' didn't have the double entendre as the title I chose, which is boosted by having the torch burning crowds in the streets shooting arrows and wielding hay forks. They see this romance as being a bit unseemly and works as a nice twist to the 50s and 60s romance comics by Jack Kirby et al.
The artwork for sale at the May 17th Auction is the black and white linework. Opening night of the exhibition is May 3rd 6pm- should be a fantastic night, and the auctions are great fun.
Come along!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

CADBURY'S RABBIT

Finally I can talk about these!
I helped design the Cadbury's rabbit that's now blazened everywhere on supermarket shelves in the lead up to Easter. I pencilled up the rabbit in various poses with all sorts of kit, and Phill, my partner in crime then rendered them up in Photoshop.
Great fun and wonderful to finally see the end result on the shelves after such a long process.

WEEKS AGO...

Here's another Week cover from a couple of weeks ago highlighting the Libyan situation, and a second cover about the political scene after the NSW state election.

Friday, March 25, 2011

LATEST WEEK...

Here's the latest Week cover.
Says it all, really.
Always fun to do.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

MORE GREAT REVIEWS FOR UNCLE SILAS: GENETIS...

A couple of great reviews, this time from the REVIEW liftout from The Weekend Australian, Australia's national weekend paper, and InDaily, Adelaide's free eNewspaper.

All this has me itching to get started into the sequel Uncle Silas: Earth.
I can't wait to draw me some monsters!!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

USG PENCILS NOW UP ON FLICKR

You can now check out the whole Uncle Silas: Genetis book in early inks and pencil stages ONLINE!
That's right, people! You can sit there with your copy of the book and flick through the pencils to do a page by page comparison to see what I was thinking and scribbling.
Sound like fun?
YOU BET!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

COMPULSIVE READER INTERVIEW NOW ONLINE.

The very smart and engaging Maggie Ball, from Compulsive Reader, interviewed me about Uncle Silas: Genetis on Blog Talk Radio. Maggie interviews so many interesting writers it's well worth your while checking out the back log of interviews on iTunes.
Enjoy!


VOTE 1 SILAS!

The annual UK Eagle Awards for comic books and graphic novels are now open for voting, so now's your chance to support Uncle Silas: Genetis!
I've submitted into these categories below to save you the hassle of looking for my name every time:


Favourite Newcomer Artist: David Follett
Favourite Artist: Fully-Painted Artwork: David Follett
Favourite Writer/Artist: David Follett
Favourite Artist: Inks: David Follett
Favourite Colourist: David Follett
Favourite 2010 Cover: Uncle Silas: Genetis
Favourite 2010 Original Graphic Novel: Uncle Silas: Genetis

 Please vote!
Every vote counts as this is a numbers game, and it would be amazing to even get into the nomination rounds for any one of these categories.
Thanks in advance!
Cheers,
Dave

WHERE THE ACTION IS...

...is over on my Uncle Silas blog.
I've been getting great reviews and I've been doing some radio interviews to promote my book, so it's well worth your while clicking on the link to check out what I've been up to lately and listening to me talk about the book, its creation and process and to hear about some of the inspiration behind it all.
Enjoy!