Here we go leaving the easy to ink backgrounds of outer space… BAH!
So a lot happened behind the scenes between pages 6 and 7 during the production of this book. I was almost done pencilling it and about to hand off the pages to STEVE to letter when good friend DANIEL J OLSON had asked if there was any way that I would be able to contribute anything to his fourth SUPER FANTASTICA COMIX anthology. I had already drawn the cover for SFC#4, and this I had kind of done knowing that between PHENOMENAL TANGENTS and a few other things there would be no way I’d be able to get anything done for SFC. But then I realized…the theme for SFC#4 was “SCIENCE FAIR”, and the opening 6 pages for PHENOMENAL TANGETS involved “science” and by only submitting 6 pages of a 26 page story would be totally not “fair” to any SFC readers. So I pitched this idea at Dan and he said he’d love to run the first 6 pages.
So Steve and I went immediately into making sure the first 6 pages were done ASAP. I had them pencilled already, but Steve would be the letterer on PHENOMENAL TANGENTS, and he’s a busy guy so he had to go into personal overtime to get those pages lettered quickly. Which he did! And I cranked the inking out in a little over a week. And despite our time constraints I was still super happy with how those pages turned out. My buddy ZANDER even told me those pages were the most beautiful he’d ever seen me do. Aw, shucks! The SUPER FANTASTICA COMIX anthology turned out pretty beautiful itself, and can be purchased here.
After all that excitement, Steve and I went back to the previously agreed upon schedule where he would get a pretty liberal amount of time to letter pages, and I would work on other things while he was doing that–like the TOMMY CHICAGO “FREE COMIC BOOK DAY 2009” SPECIAL. Eventually I finished the TC story and Steve had some pages lettered and ready for me to ink. The Saturday I was going to go to Steve’s and pick those pages up, a pipe burst in our house. I quickly scanned the internet for a reliable plumber who wouldn’t screw us over ’cause he had to work on Saturday, and found ERIK NELSON. Having repairmen in the house has always been weird for me…what to do with myself while they toil? Usually I sit nervously, but that day I remembered “Oh yeah–COMICS!” So I got some pages from Steve and brought them home to work on while Erik put my ancient plumbing back together. While I was inking page seven Erik walked by and said: “OH! You’re a cartoonist?! Me too! Hey…weren’t you at the CARTOONIST CONSPIRACY meeting last month…?”
So yes, in the small world we live I had randomly called the only plumber in Minnesota who was also the newest member of the Conspiracy. Crazy! We have since become buddies, and his art will appear on this very website next month as a part of a special, secret project (well, slightly less secret now, I guess). And it’s all thanks to comics….