Saturday, May 29, 2004
|I finished the second episode of RCH tonight. It's a tad bigger than 'Ball' (12 pages), it's called 'Door' and you'll be seeing it on the site either tomorrow or monday, along with two wallpapers of the series.
Hopefully you'll enjoy 'reading' it and if you've got any thoughts on what it'd be about, send me an Email and we might arrange a T-shirt for you if you got it right (and no, 'Door' is not the right answer - it goes a bit deeper than that :) ).
Sunday, May 23, 2004
|Perhaps you all remember my regret about my initial response to the webcomics selection in the new Dutch Stripmuseum. Well, as I explained, this was based merely on the pictures I saw of the pillars, which gave a bad idea of what I could really find there. Then, shortly after, I decided to take back the expression of regret because, after all, I'm entitled to a nuance-free opinion in the light of my 'profession'.
Today, I was in the Stripmuseum. I saw the webcomics selection. And besides having had a great time there (in the museum itself) I have to admit I'm impressed after all. It's a good selection, tipping my hat to Reinder there. And as I understand, this is before the new update, so I'll anxiously await the updated selection now.
Meanwhile, Probeersel.com is mentioned TWICE in that collection. That's right - first of all, we're one of the collectives named in the summary of Dutch web comics podias. While that's not entirely accurate - we're not Dutch, we're international, with semi-coincidentally a large percentage of Dutch folk on board - it's an honour, since we're mentioned alongside Stripster, NuComics and Cutie. Definately the best known players on the Dutch market where webcomics are involved.
Then, in the collection Stripster made available to the museum exhibit, a few pages of The Grim DotCom can actually be found ! With, of course, a link to Probeersel.com ! So if I ever complain about lack of exposure, and theorize about conspiracy theories within the media, again, kick me, because I witnessed our initiative getting some sweet lovin' today.
Ahhh. I am proud. Just wanted to share that with you all.
Friday, May 21, 2004
RCH (pronounced 'Arch', not Ahrr-See-Eych) premiered yesterday. The comic is fairly basic and one episode fits on one piece of paper. The first episode revolves around the concept of keeping your friends close to you. That you never should try to abuse any one of them. You could say that the black figure in 'Ball' represents the US, but I'll leave that to the reader's imagination.
I might just do Episode 2 today. I don't know what it'll be about...we'll see.
Keep your eyes open for further installments though...
Wednesday, May 19, 2004
|I don't think I've laughed so damn hard in quite a while as I did yesterday !
Jean-Paul Arends, comic artist behind daily comic 'Scribbly' from the Dutch 'Metro' newspaper, has admitted before that he's a semi-fan of the comic that Joep and I are doing for one year (and we're wayyyy over halfway), Worst Case Scenario. To make a long story short, he spammed the Stripster forum by posting the comic's eternal punchline, "Wilt u daar ook worstjes bij ?", in every thread. The owner of the site stopped him after about 25, 30 threads were contaminated or so, after which a huge discussion arose because he took it so seriously, so the thread about that joke became divided between people who laughed their asses off about it, people who seemed to be attacking the owner, and the owner.
The thread is still alive as I write this, however, by now everything's cooled off and René Janssen, a Dutch freelance illustrator, had put two Worst Case Scenario jokes online. So of course I promptly asked if it was OK if I used it in the regular series, with due credit and link to his website, of course, and he agreed.
So I don't get why everyone's always so opposed to spam ?? Joep and I won't have to draw any Worst Case Scenarios for Friday and Saturday because of it, so you don't hear us complaining... *wink*
Also thought I'd update everyone that the aspiring member thanked us for our feedback but didn't seem to think he'd be up to our desired level of quality. I'm sorry to read it, I seriously saw a bit of potential in his drawings. But in any case, that tenth member still has to apply, so if anyone still wants to place that bet ?
Sunday, May 16, 2004
|Out of the blue, we receive email from Satan letting us know he's alive and intends to resume the Macadamia strips ! Woooo ! I'm excited, seriously. The comic was off to a good start and I really like his work and sense of humour. So I hope he does get to resume the comic :)
We're also approached by a new applicant. I'm not going into details yet because the entire staff's not quite sure wether or not this person's Probeersel.com material or not. We requested them to send in more material that will give us a better idea of what they can add to our community. So we don't know if this is the tenth member already - however, several dozen people have now over time applied for the site, and less than half have been accepted.
Redeeming factor in the indecision was that the submitted material consisted of loose scribbles, and Sionnain was quick to point out that the way people submit to our community should already tell us something about them, or how they view us. And she has a point ! If you submit loose scribbles to join our community, you seem to be under the impression that that's what we're looking for, that we're the kind of community that publishes that.
Sure, several of our artists have gone on temporary hiatus, and the artistic styles on our site vary a lot, but the artistic merit of heavily-criticised-for-drawing-style work like Troy Titane's or Gregory Cathalina's actually is worshipped by part of our audience, and always has additional quality that makes it art. We do not just publish scribbles. So please, if you're submitting, give us a clear idea of what you can do. Otherwise we're just not gonna even discuss it anymore. Crap work is crap work.
Anyway, thought I'd update everyone !
Friday, May 14, 2004
|I just realised something earlier today while posting on the Stripliefhebbersforum. There's a reporter who posts there a lot called Peter Breedveld, and I cracked this little joke about him calling my comics crap which he responded quite seriously to. I realised that it's comic artist's job to vent straight, uncensored, unnuanced opinions and remarks, and it's journalists' job to actually nuance everything to the bone to make sure it corresponds with the truth. The jester and the herald, so to speak.
That's probably also why I hated the thought I'd have to watch my big mouth (see previous post) because I'm a comic artist, dangit. I'm gonna damn well write what I like - I'm not a reporter, after all. So yeah, my completely biased and uninformed opinion of the webcomics exhibit was that it focussed on comics that don't represent what's out there too well in my view - it may be way off the mark, but that's how I perceived it. Then again, I'm going to go to the museum soon (hopefully this weekend if I get round to it) and I'll make sure to give that exhibit a good amount of my time. So yeah. Expect an obnoxious loudmouth when I post, but they're just opinions and often I don't even mean it.
I'm just a jester :)
Tuesday, May 11, 2004
|Amazing - whereas my experience so far was that not a controversial (or non-controversial) thing I said or wrote made even a dent on anything because our community (and yours truly, as well) is constantly being (deliberately or not) overlooked, we seem to have been raising a few eyebrows lately here and there. Good news - although I'd just as well have us continue being ignored so I can continue to let stupid things fly straight out of my big mouth and coming off as justifyably indignant.
This, however, is now (in my opinion) no longer the case. Whereas I've been rather comfortable with the fact that no matter what we tried, our little (now ten-headed after all - meaning: I count Tom too, of course) initiative was never mentioned in summaries, and the consequently very pleasant situation that I got to bitch and moan and speculate about media conspiracies and sabotage through systematic silence, truth is, slowly people are looking. And listening. And - quite rightly so - commenting on that big mouth of mine.
This time round, it's Reinder Dijhuis on the Waffle blog. Quote:
Speaking of Probeersel, their main man René van Densen said some things about the project in the group's blog some weeks ago that I think were wide off the mark (originally in parentheses):
I can't completely agree with his picks since they reveal mainly a focus on 'established pros' and fairly little on new-and-upcoming-talent, the latter of which are actually lately pulling in the much larger visitors' numbers as it seems - like Reasons Why We Rule, Monkey Business, the PC Weenies, etc.,...
I will reserve judgment on the quality of these comics, but of the three that René mentions, two have hit counters. The counter for Reasons Why We Rule shows respectable numbers, but not exactly mass popularity. Likewise with the counter for PC Weenies which has been counting since 2000. The first PC Weenies strip dates from 1998, which means it's older than most of the work in the exhibit. I suppose that that's interesting in its own right. (The newest comic in the exhibit started in 2003, but there is an emphasis on older work dating back as far as 1993, because it's, like, a chronologically-based exhibit in a museum)
Anyway, while I did include some of the big webcomics names in the exhibit, that wasn't the only or indeed the most important criterion for inclusion and never will be. But since René brought it up...
He's right - what can I say ? I blabbed my mouth off at 9 AM on a Sunday (which was actually somewhere in the afternoon since 1: I don't get up that early and 2: the blog's still set in US time I think), probably while trying to motivate myself to get up and git ta drawin' while still groggy from sleeping, and I also based it off the few pictures he's shown us in his articles thusfar. Which are rather specific picks that I immediately wrote down my opinion of. I haven't seen the exhibition, I had no further inside knowledge, and I just blurted it out - but, it was in our COMMUNITY's blog instead of my own lil' place. So he's right, he's right. I should really start watching my mouth from here on. We're starting to get scrutinized, little by little.
Saturday, May 08, 2004
|We have another aspiring community member - his name is Bandirah and he's going to send us some audition material. I have a feeling - just from his email - that he'll be doing something very interesting, but we'll just see. If his stuff IS interesting enough, we'll have a ninth member on board, which brings me to a little betting pool I want to propose amongst us Probeersel folk: When do you think we'll hit ten ? Not counting Tom as a member here, since he IS staff but not one of the artists, mind you, otherwise we'd hit ten with the first artist that joins next, Bandirrah or not. But stuff's getting exciting ! When I steered this site's course away from just the Probeersel books towards an artist community, I wouldn't have dreamed to have so close to ten people on board this quickly, let alone such talented ones. I would like to raise a glass on all you loyal Probeersel folks, and to all future community joiners the future will bring us !
Now - I'm betting we'll hit ten before August. I'll wager a whopping 5 Euros on that. What do you guys think ? ;)