This all-new issue of Smeary Soapbox Press-ents came about following a conversation with D. Blake Werts (of Copy This! renown). I remarked how I was pleasantly surprised by the outpouring of affection in his zine over the passing of Tim Corrigan, given how Blake seemed to be coming from the obscuro/dada/newave scene rather than the story-oriented approach that Tim practiced (and I favor). It was an eye-opening conversation for me, and got me to look at art-oriented minis in a whole new way.
It also got me thinking … thinking that I’d never really done an “art” mini! And that it was time to change that. Back in 2002-3 (before my Watusi comics got traction and pulled my attention in that direction), I did a series of abstractions that I planned to publish as a digest for a gallery show of the drawings. While the book never came about, I did exhibit (and sell) a number of those drawings. I’ve recently been revisiting them as I prepare material for an upcoming show, and they’re drawings I’m still really proud of, even cropped for minicomic proportions as they are here.
I’ve got a couple of distribution schemes in the works for this one. For now, you can pick up a FREE copy at tomorrow’s “Planet Nine: Displacement” closing karaoke party (while they last) at Marshall Arts. You can also get a copy from me by mail, postpaid for just $1.00 from the address in the footer of this page.
Today, I received the sad news that Tim Corrigan is retiring from publishing small press comics. I credit Tim with getting me involved in the world of small press, making it possible for me to network with other cartoonists and setting me on the path I’ve followed for decades.
It was in the summer of 1986 that I first discovered his Small Press Comics Explosion, a kind of Factsheet Five for the comics set. SPCE made it possible for me to sample comics from around the country, introducing me to the likes of Matt Feazell, Graham Annable, Matt Levin, and many others who took obvious joy in making their own comics their own way rather than shaping their work to appeal to Marvel or DC. It was amazing to see the things that more experienced cartoonists were able to do in the medium of handmade comics, and it inspired me to stretch my own creativity in new ways. Most importantly, it allowed me to collaborate with cartoonists I never would have met otherwise in the pre-internet age when I had no cartooning peers of my own to work with locally.
But as important as Tim is to me as a rallying point for small press comic creators and an entry into that world, he was also a darn good cartoonist. He was equally adept at drawing Kirby-esque action as at silly superhero satire. Plus, he was a really good writer; his action comics were well-crafted, and his humor comics were actually laugh-out-loud funny. In fact, I’d been waiting until his (announced) hiatus was over to run a review of the only comic I subscribed to: Tim Corrigan’s Comics and Stories. While I won’t be getting any more manilla envelopes with new TCC&S issues, it was a treat I really looked forward to every month. And I do mean every month: from Sept. 2006 until earlier this year (taking off only an announced 6-month period in 2011) he produced a lovely anthology comic each and every month. For me it was a perfect small press digest, not only to enjoy as a reader of quality comics, but to aspire to a publisher myself. Continue reading “Thank you, Tim Corrigan!”