Category: Blog

“INDIE” IS NOT A FOUR LETTER WORD

“Indie.”  Short for “independent.”  Indie comics, indie music, indie movies. Indie.

It means the creator is not creating for a corporation; they are often a small group, or mostly likely an individual, realizing their vision to their own tastes; following their own tunes, drawing their own images, writing their own stories.

Quite often, I hear the word “indie” synonimized with “bad” or “poorly done”, and that’s just not the case. Are Indie creations less refined than their mainstream counterparts? Sure. Indie folks don’t have the budget for the high-gloss, hi-fi, high-profile presentation that mainstream creations get– but that doesn’t mean the work is “less than.”

What’s disturbing is that we as fans sometimes forget this, and we buy into the hype that this “slickly-presented and lavishly colorful perfect-bound graphic novel available from Big Company for only $15.00” is a better deal than the saddle-stitched photocopy in the Artist’s Alley for $20. It’s not a better “deal,” it’s just less money (and if that is your only criteria for your entertainment purchases, read no further).

I want to share something with my fellow creators for those times when they might feel that they’re not “good enough” because they’re indie and not mainstream:

I was reading a graphic novel put out by one of the Big Two (it’s irrelevant to specify, as the point of this is not to slam anyone but to illustrate a point), and…

…it was bad. I mean, really substandard, to the point where I thought “These pages were turned in, and an editor approved them, and people got paid? HOW??”

This was an 80-page, high gloss, graphic novel product for a very prominent title for the company. It should therefore have been its highest-end content, and yet I saw:

  • Disjointed story with inconsistent characterization, clunky dialogue, fragmented story trails that went nowhere;
  • Confusing visuals where, on several of the pages, I literally could not figure out what was happening on the page
  • Poorly-drawn people that were objectively drawn badly (poor anatomy, misshapen faces, inconsistent body type from page to page

…and it hit me, plain as day: These people are not better at their craft simply because they work for a big corporation. They are not automatically more legitimate, of a higher echelon, or somehow more valid because they have a credit in a “big name” publication.

Yes, they did have to put in the work, the time, the effort, and the professionalism to get there– I’m not discounting that or disputing that.

What I’m saying is that Indie folks are not “worse” at what they do simply because they don’t work for a big company. If any of you out there ever have that little demon voice whispering in your ear trying to get you to believe it, shoo it away, because the truth is that we all find our level. Some of us Indies might never refine our craft to the point of being able to compete in the mainstream, it’s true. But some of those in the mainstream take their shot, get published– and are never heard from again because they simply couldn’t maintain the quality of their work.

Be proud of what you do, and constantly strive to be better than you were yesterday, no matter who you are or at what level you’re creating. Do not think because the mainstream spotlight is not on you today that you don’t deserve to be recognized tomorrow.

Keep creating. Keep improving. Above all, keep working. Let “Indie” be a source of pride, not of insecurity or scorn. Live it. Be it. Create it. OWN it.

–Michael McAdam

THUNDER THURSDAY: What’s coming in 2018

As an Indie comics creator, I know I have to put my very best foot forward when I publish my comics for the world to see; in a vast sea of other creators, all of us vying for a piece of the comics-world readership, I need to bring my “A” game each and every time. And that’s why, as 2017 winds down and 2018 looms on the horizon, with all my plans for “bigger and better” in the coming year, I am very pleased to announce the completely refreshed look for Two Gargoyle’s beloved Canadian hero, THUNDER.

The first four issues (which comprise the THUNDER Graphic Novel) are being completely redrawn with fresh, new art by the incredibly talented Mark Marvida, with scintillating colors by his brother Marvin!

The script will remain (mostly) the same, with minor tweaks and edits for flow– not so dramatic a refresh as the art, but a refresh nonetheless! My goal is to have the Thunder Graphic Novel carried by Chapters/Indigo all across Canada (a lofty goal I’m not 100% sure how to pursue yet, but there it is) and I want to showcase the very best THUNDER that I can!

Here is a sneak preview, a side-by-side comparison of the first three pages! Keep watching for the KICKSTARTER for Thunder #1 Second Edition, coming in the new year!

SWING AND A MISS!

Well folks, our deadline has come and gone and we weren’t successful… THIS time.

Kyle and I have learned a lot from this process, (and hey, this was our very first Kickstarter!) so we WILL be trying again in the New Year.

Currently, we’re thinking March 2018 to re-Kickstart, and in the meantime we’d love to hear your feedback on what worked for you, what you think might work better, and what didn’t work.

There are SO many successful comic Kickstarters out there, we have faith that we’ll get there; we just have some re-tooling and fine-tuning to do! We’re SO grateful for all of you who believed in us, and we hope you’ll rejoin us in March to make Gloaming #3 a reality! In the meantime, keep your eyes on Twitter: @Twogargs and @Kyohazard, and don’t forget our main websites: www.twogargs.com and www.kyohazard.com !

If you want, you can send us feedback through here or at twogargs@gmail.com!

In gratitude,

Michael & Kyle

C4 Winnipeg: The Worst Convention I Have Ever Attended.

TL;DR I will never return to C4 Winnipeg. The convention is horrible from start to finish.

Okay, so here’s the story of C4 Winnipeg 2017.

Not too long ago, before the advent of mainstream organizations taking over conventions, they were run by well-meaning but inexperienced volunteers. It was considered standard for there to be hiccups, miscommunications and confusion in every process from registration to teardown.

Nowadays, we’ve seen a better way: We’ve seen competence, organization, and we’ve experienced being treated with respect by people who know what they’re doing.

Which is why C4 Winnipeg was such an unpleasant shock.

Continue reading…

GLOAMING 3 KICKSTARTER LAUNCHED!

We’re SUPER PROUD to present our very first Kickstarter, NOW LIVE at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/twogargs/gloaming-3 !

Please support Canadian Indie Comics! Our Horror comic Gloaming has already had lots of fan-love for the first two issues, now see what a third issue could bring!

Some of the rewards for pledging your support:

-Digital and physical copies of Gloaming #3
-Digital and physical copies of the entire Gloaming set
-Your name on the Two Gargoyles website Thank You page
-Variant Cover edition (limited)
-Room key to the Verfall Inn
-Limited edition “Greetings from Gloaming” sketch card by artist Kyle Burles
-Have your likeness drawn into the comic!
-Be drawn as the Sheriff of Gloaming
-Be drawn as the MAYOR of Gloaming!

And above and beyond all that, the joy of knowing you, yes YOU, helped create a comic book and bring it into the world. Way to go, you!

We have 42 days to fund the project. Our goal: $4500.00.  With your help, we CAN do it!

Much love,

Michael & Kyle.

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