Local horror anthology comic book takes shape

Bill Hook reports that many Kansas City area creators are developing contributions for the upcoming comic book horror anthology titled 86’d. In addition to Hook, creators who have been associated with the project include co-publisher Nick Perry, C.W. Cooke, Kelsey Wroten, and Bobby Bierley.

Hook says that the final list of creators isn’t finalized yet. “We have many people working on contributions for the book. We have many creators from the KC area but we have reached out as far as New York, Los Angeles, and even a group of artists from France.”

The publication will be in magazine format with black and white interiors. “It will be 52 pages and will contain lots of extras,” Hook said. “We plan to insert an uncut sheet of trading cards featuring art from all contributing artists. It will also feature a flip cover, one side featuring art by Nick Perry and the other side will feature my artwork. We have many other extras in the works but we will announce them closer to the release of the book.” Hook gives the target publication date simply as “Spring 2012,” allowing the team some flexibility to shift the release.

An illustration from a story written by C.W. Cooke and drawn by Kelsey Wroten for the horror anthology 86'd.

It’s important to Hook for 86’d to feature a variety of styles and voices. “I think the diversity and originality of the project are cool,” he said. “I work with Nick at the day job, but we come from different worlds creatively. I grew up on comics and that led me to the art world; the art world eventually led Nick to comics. We chose horror as the genre because it was an interest that we share. We feel like the marriage of art styles and approaches is very unique. We have creators in the book who are experienced pros and some who have never tried anything like this before. No two artists in the book have much in common in terms of style or approach. And, if we do our job, we could make this project a very special one.”

Hook and Perry will be funding the project at least partially through an online campaign. “We will be attempting to raise money to pay some production costs and to compensate the creators. It will be launching in December on indiegogo.com.”

Meanwhile, some creators are working to firm up their contributions to the project. Writer Bobby Beirley is actively searching for a collaborator. “I’m looking for an artist to work on my submission for the 86’d horror anthology. I have one story basically done, although there are a couple more I could also do if anyone is interested in drawing them.” Bierley’s story is six-pages long and includes drawing horses. Artists interested in contacting Bierley with samples can contact him through Kansas City Comics (kirk@kansascitycomics.com) to have their messages forwarded.

You can follow the project as it develops on the 86’d workblog at http://86dstudios.blogspot.com.

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Terry Beatty: The Kansas City Comics Interview

Wild Dog meets Terry Beatty

Comics artist Terry Beatty (right) meets Wild Dog, one of the characters he co-created. (Click to enlarge.)

Terry Beatty is an accomplished comic book artist and illustrator whose career stretches back to the early 1980s. He’s the co-creator — with Max Allan Collins — of the long-running private eye comic book series, Ms. Tree. Collaborations with Collins also include Mike Mist, Mickey Spillane’s Mike Danger, Johnny Dynamite, and Wild Dog. Collins and Beatty’s latest work is Return to Perdition, a graphic novel sequel to Road to Perdition, that will be released November 15th.

Beatty will also be a featured guest at the KC Fan Con this Sunday, November 6th in Overland Park.

For over a decade, Beatty was the primary inker of DC Comics’ animated-style Batman comics, including a four-year stint inking Chris Jones’ pencils on The Batman Strikes. Beatty’s cover paintings appear regularly on Scary Monsters magazine.

Beatty moved to the Kansas City area in 2011. He is currently accepting art commissions. For more information, contact him by email at terrybeatty@mac.com.

Kansas City Comics: If I recall correctly, you started out in comics fandom. I remember your early work on the covers of zines like Comics Buyer’s Guide back when it still was The Buyer’s Guide for Comic Fandom. How did you get involved with TBG and what led you into creating comics for a living?

Terry Beatty: Alan Light, publisher of TBG, lived about a half hour’s drive from me, and I’d been a subscriber to TBG since the mid 1970’s. I saw a lot of artists getting their work published on the TBG covers and thought it would be a good place to make a splash — seeing as how all the “serious” comics fans were subscribers as well. Continue reading

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G4’s Blair Butler scheduled as Planet Comicon guest

Booster Gold #23 featuring Blair Butler

Blair Butler will be a guest at Planet Comicon 2012. (Click to enlarge.)

Television personality and Kansas City native Blair Butler will appear at Planet Comicon next spring. Butler is the host of G4’s “Fresh Ink” comic book review segments and substitute host for the network’s flagship “Attack of the Show” program. She has recently started writing comic books, co-creating the upcoming Image Comics series Heart with Kansas City artist Kevin Mellon.

Planet Comicon — Kansas City’s largest comics and pop culture convention — will be held March 24-25, 2012, at the Overland Park International Trade Center in Overland Park, Kansas.

Show promoter Chris Jackson said that he has tried to book Butler in past years, but schedules never worked out. “I have seen her on panels and host panels at San Diego Comic Con,” Jackson said. “I have watched from the crowd in the aisles below the G4 stage as she does live TV from SDCC. I have seen the enormous lines for signing under the sails when she appears with other G4 TV personalities at SDCC. She is great! This is a wonderful opportunity for all of us in Kansas City to meet her.”

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