Art


Monster Alphabet: Strange Creatures from A-Z

Zoq by Oliver McTavish-Wisden

Zoq by Oliver McTavish-Wisden

Last year, Cloudscape ran the Monster Alphabet, a contest where we would invent various names for fictional creatures and artists would then draw what they think those creatures would look like.

Go to the Monster Alphabet to see all 26 of the winners, along with a detailed description of each creature, explaining their habits, tastes, and demeanour.

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New Cloudscape Comics Headquarters

One of our many rooms in the new studioCloudscape Comics is moving into a new studio!  Thanks to the City of Vancouver’s Fieldhouse Initiative, a program that repurposes neglected park buildings into free studio spaces for artist collectives in exchange for free community programming, Cloudscape has found a new home for our roster of more than 60 unique artists.

Located at 5955 Ross St. at East 41st Ave. in South Memorial Park, the new Cloudscape Comics Society HQ will be a place for artists to work together in the comic medium. It’s also a perfect location for our weekly meetings and a great classroom for us to start our free public programming. We will officially open up the studio on Wednesday November 7th, 2012. So if you plan on attending our Wednesday meetings, please visit us at the HQ!

For more information on the Field House Initiative, visit them here. If you’d like to keep up to date on our residency, visit our blog.

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All-Canadian Heroes 2

So I’m currently putting together the roster for the graphic novel anthology All-Canadian Comics, and have been sent a wide variety of heroes, all compelling and all very Canadian.

Here’s a sample of the ones we have so far:

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  1. Johnny Canuck (by Bevan Thomas and Jeff Ellis): Canada’s living legend, who helped drive back the Nazis in World War II and now returns to confront modern foes.
  2. The Loon II (by Bevan Thomas and Jeff Ellis): The scourge of the Montreal underworld, a mysterious lunatic vigilante with unknown ties to the Loon of the 1940s.
  3. E. Pauline Johnson (by Shannon Campbell and Reetta Linjama): One of Canada’s first national poets, who in this universe was a prominent reporter of BC superhumans at the dawn of the 20th century.
  4. Ikniqpalagaq (by Bevan Thomas and Jeri Weaver): Half-human daughter of the North Wind, guardian of the Arctic and all its secrets.
  5. The Energy Trader (by Morgan Wolf and Cody Andreasen): Mild-mannered Torontonian transformed by an evil corporation into an energy conduit.
  6. Canada Jacques (by Bevan Thomas and Ksenia Kozhevnikova): Perhaps the first Metis gay-activist superhero.

There’s still room for more!

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The Terrible Death of Finnegan Strappe

Jordyn Bochon, former Vancouverite and occasional Cloudscape contributor, has launched a fundraiser for her new project. The Terrible Death of Finnegan Strappe will be an ongoing comics series and Jordyn is raising the funds to print the first three issues. She says:

“The Terrible Death of Finnegan Strappe is the macabre story of one man’s self destructive, occult journey to utter ruin told through a veil of humor, gore, and glamour. This project is a labor of love, spanning several years. With this fundraiser I hope to self-publish the first three issues and get my work out to a larger audience. I’ve been publishing my own comics for years because I am passionate about what I do and can’t imagine doing it any other way.”

You can read it as a webcomic here, (caution: not always safe for work) and contribute to the fundraiser on Indiegogo.

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Name Game: Two-in-One

by Bevan Thomas

We are back once against to the Name Game, where I take a name from DC or Marvel Comics, and develop it into a totally new character of my own creation who is illustrated by one of the many talented artists I know. This character manages to take his name from both a particular comic book, and from one of my all-time favourite superheroes of all time, Beta Ray Bill, who in Marvel Comics is an alien supersoldier with a face like a horse skull who manages to acquire a variation of Thor’s powers and hammer, and who is far more awesome than that sounds. As usual, all I took was his name, and the fact that he encountered another of his people’s supersoldiers, who was called Alpha Ray Bill.

And now, here is one of the greatest superheroes of Universe-M….

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Two-in-One

image by Ksenia Kozhevnikova

Real Name: Raymond “Ray” Bill

Aliases: Alpha Ray and Beta Ray

Occupation: Former taxi driver, now civil servant

Group Affiliation: Sentinels of Liberty

Raymond Bill was a simple taxi driver who was captured by the mad scientist Dr. Strange, who wanted to transform Raymond into one of his inhuman Ex-Men by fracturing his psyche, creating two beings where there once was one. The Human Torch managed to rescue Raymond before the experiment was complete, and for a while Raymond believed he had survived unscathed. Then, a few days later, he began to get strange headaches, almost as if his brain was being pulled in two… until eventually it was.

While watching television in his apartment, in one blinding moment of agony, Raymond split into two separate people. Both of them had all his memories and more-or-less the same appearance, with a few subtle exceptions, but their personalities were very distinct. Though both Rays shared the same general moral values, one was hot-headed and aggressive, while the other was calm and stoic. Eventually the two managed to combine back into a single individual and Raymond tried to forget the whole thing had ever happened.

(more…)

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21 Journeys is here! 2

It’s here! At long last, 21 Journeys is up for sale on this very site.

Cloudscape’s fifth anthology takes the reader on journeys near and far. Whether you travel around the world or around the block, it’s the people you meet along the way and the things you learn about yourself that are the real adventure. This massive 256-page full-colour tome includes short stories by Miriam Libicki, Colin Upton, John Christmas, Edison Yan, and many others, with a cover drawn by Steve Rolston. You will travel to the bottom of the ocean, the Downtown East Side, suburban Ohio, Cambodia, Egypt, and cold war Germany. It’ll be worth the trip.

The book is available in print for $25 and as an ebook for $1.95.

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Name Game: Ghost Rider

by Bevan Thomas

We return again to the Name Game, where classic old comic book names are attached to totally new characters. I’ve always been a huge fan of Marvel Comics’ Ghost Rider, specifically the Johnny Blaze version. The later nicer nineties one I could take or leave, but there was a lot to be said for the original Ghost Rider’s sadistic delight in burning the souls of his enemies. That said, I’m also a really big fan of spiritualism, Voodoo, shamanism, etc., and their concept of channelling where you can get yourself “ridden” by a spirit.  So I decided to go that direction here, and fortunately found an artist who’s for it who’s a big fan of ghosts as well. Jayleen Weaver is actually working with her twin sister to compile an anthology of ghost story comics that I’m involved with.

Anyway, here’s Ghost Rider.

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Ghost Rider

image by Jayleen Weaver

Real Name: Roxanne “Roxie” Simpson

Aliases: Shaman, Wendigo

Occupation: Shaman and medium, former temp

Group Affiliation: Ghost Rider & Nightmare, Sentinels of Liberty

Roxanne “Roxie” Simpson thought she was just a regular young woman with a BA in comparative religions, a temp job, and no real career prospects or direction in her life. Then, one day her boss died of a heart attack at work and suddenly his soul was howling in her mind!

Roxie ran screaming from the building, never to return.

A few months later, the Sentinels of Liberty were battling the Ex-Man known as Abomination. To increase its mass and power, the Abomination had been absorbing numerous panhandlers into its body, though finally one proved far more than to be expected. A vagrant whose mind, over the last few months, had become a screaming parliament of spirits. It was far, far too much for the Abomination to handle and with a scream, the monster collapsed into unconsciousness.

(more…)

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