The second school year of Alma Mater has now officially begun! Be sure to take a look.
Also, be sure to check out my interview with Xaviar Xerexes of ComixTalk if you'd like to learn more about the comic and where it is headed.
After some time off, I've started work on the first few weeks of comics for September. I've been experimenting with a few new methods of working on the comic, and, while it's too soon for me to say whether I'll completely overhaul the way I create comics, it's helped me to try putting comics together in a slightly different manner.
I'm hoping that, if I work consistently over the summer, I will have a three month buffer when the comic returns on September 5th. It really helps to have the breathing room, because it allows me to do more ambitious comics from time to time, and it also gives me the chance to take a break when I really need it.
As I mentioned elsewhere, the iPod contest winner will be announced on Monday (6/18). After that, the Summer-O-Fun will be able to proceed in earnest. I've tried to provide an interesting grab-bag of materials, and I hope that you guys will enjoy it!
After reading the comments from Wednesday's comic (Mr. Finch's Opus), I decided to try my hand at making custom Mr. Finch ties. I put together a trial version of the crab tie. It looks pretty cute, but, while it's not that noticeable, the tiling is ever so slightly off in some places. I made a few changes to the tie, so it should be fine when I officially unveil the ties and other merchandise.
Anyway, since I don't really wear ties, I figured that one of the comic's readers might be able to use it. Thus, I am giving the first person who sends in a summer guest strip the option of taking the tie. If you want to send in a guest strip but aren't enthused about the tie, that's fine; I'll just keep it and give the option to another person. But if you'd like a tie and have also been thinking about drawing a guest strip, you're in luck.
( Tie PreviewCollapse )
I just finished all of my comics for the first school year; naturally, I am excited to have reached this milestone, and I look forward to starting work on next September's comics. Over the next few days, I am going to relax and try to do some organizational work on the comic. Although I have a small notebook with some comic-related information, it's hard to keep things up to date, and the next few days would be an ideal time to organize all the information about the school and its denizens.
The last comic of the semester will be posted on June 1, and the Summer-O-Fun will begin shortly after that. So, if you're interested in putting together a guest comic, it would be a good idea to get started as soon as possible. Likewise, if you want to enter the iPod contest, you should start compiling your lists of musical references, since there are only a few weeks' worth of references to find.
I saw webcomics playlists on the Ugly Hill and You'll Have That pages, and just had to do one of my own. Feel free to listen, but be warned that it is a "themed" playlist and has a few laughably bad songs.
The Alma Mater Playlist
Alma Mater is back after a refreshing "spring break." The spring semester will be over in two months, but I'm hoping that the next few comics will be enjoyable ones.
In addition, I have set up a Facebook account for the comic. If you're on Facebook, feel free to take a look!
This week has been a tricky one for me, so the batch of comics has been slow. I'm hoping to catch up over the coming week. Although I have a buffer, I don't want to let it slide unless I have to.
This week's comics (to be displayed between April 30 and May 4) took a while to work on, both because the comics themselves took longer than average and because I had non-comic responsibilities to deal with. Fortunately, the non-comic responsibilities were of a positive nature, so don't worry about me.
I'm going to try and change my work schedule for the next two weeks' worth of comics; hopefully that will make things more efficient and ensure that the buffer doesn't get eaten up more than necessary.
I'm entering into the last full month (I will have one non-summer comic in June) of the first "school year," which is a little bit daunting. The fact that this comic, as a school comic, is broken up into semesters and years, has its benefits and challenges. It's nice that there is a built-in "summer vacation" that will allow me to post alternative content while rebuilding my buffer; otherwise, I'd probably get burned out. However, it also means that I'll need to wrap up a few things as the first "chapter" of the comic comes to an end.
Finally, I should point you towards Turtle vs. Bunny, Joe Dunn's interactive version of the Tortoise and Hare story. I put together two pro-Bunny pin-ups, the first of which is done in the Alma Mater style, and the second of which is a simple, vaguely Picasso-styled drawing.
The past couple of weeks have been tough for me, as I've been trying to put together my summer materials while keeping a steady schedule with my weekly comics. I'm just about back to my normal schedule, though.
I am just about finished with my personal contributions to the Summer-O-Fun. If I don't get any guest comics and don't put together any additional materials, I have enough for two updates a week for the rest of the summer. I don't know how the guest comics will pan out; asking for guest art is a bit of a gamble for a new comic, and I doubt I'll get anything until the last minute in any case. I do hope that I'll get at least one or two pieces, though. I'd like to see what other cartoonists can do with my characters.