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Issue 6 (February 2002).
24 Black n’ White pages interior.
Colour wraparound cover.
This is the cover to the sixth issue of my Tales. With this issue the cover / back cover scheme that began with issue #3 endedand I continued the "white border" scheme that began with issue #5.
This issue ended the first (really) long story arc of the "Jazz and Maria" saga (which began with issue #1) and which were eventually collected in the trade paperback that I soon thereafter self-published, "Jazz and Maria: The beginning of the end of the beginning". I really longed to end the first part of the saga and had kind of grown tired of the really out-there action. With the next issue I had Maria star on her own and returned the series to its more subtle roots.
I kind of reached a low with this issue in that I illustrated the lyrics to a Pavlos Sidiropoulos* song for God only knows what reason. Cliched and embarrassed I vowed not to do this ever again (that is until I illustrated my OWN lyrics for the Autodivine concept album :P ).
I thought at this point that it'd be a great idea to purchase an A3 (!) printer and start printing some of the material in colour on my own (as the colour elements- mainly the cover- cost me dearly at the photocopy joint that I printed my stuff at). I soon realised that the bloody ink for my HP inkjet A3 monster cost a bloody fortune and having already drawn a four pager and the cover to the issue that accompanied it, there was no way getting around it. So I printed on a fast/draft module and the middle 4-pager Glam Rock cover story was printed so faint, or sometimes plainright bloody crippled with bad inkjet cartridge lines showing that I never attempted anything of its kind again. The A3 printer and the cartridges used essentially sent my budget way off course and it delayed the next issue's publication for a while.
Talking about the cover story, my fascination with Glam Rock (already planted deeply in me with my, and my brother's, lifelong love for one of the greatest bands of all time, KISS) went into full gear after I really got into David Bowie's seminal early '70s stuff, like 'Ziggy Stardust and the Spider from Mars' and 'Hunky Dory'. I gobbled up movies like 'Velvet Goldmine' and 'Hedwig & The Angry Inch' like there was no tomorrow and dreamt of creating a Glam Rock band (which I realised, kind of. with Autodivine in 2005!). This story featured a blatant ripoff of 'Velvet Goldmine's' main theme (a detective/journalist researching the life and times of a long forgotten Glam Rock star) but the rest of the story was a mash-up of various Glam Rock stars/facts that I loved (again not unlike 'Velvet Goldmine', I guess)-- the main band is called 'Anarchy Arachny' (a play on the Bowie's backing band, 'The Spiders from Mars'), his manager's name is James Maccoin (a play on legendary KISS manager, Bill Accoin's, name) etc etc.
The story was coloured in my pre-Photoshop days using bloody water soluble coloured pencils and I had printed the speech balloons-elements seperately and stuck them on top. When I scanned and printed the bloody thing, the colours looked so bad that I never -EVER- coloured anything with pencils again. Man, my 'Tales' were starting to become a huge grand mistake and grand lesson learned (i.e. hit and miss for my readers) experience and I'm still suprised that some readers still hang around to see where the hell I'd take it! I guess the whole darned series was a huge canvas on which I experimented and once the series was over in 2004, I finally knew what my 'style' was-- or it had finally crept under my skin so much that I stopped initiating such 'wonderful' experiments!
I’ll be uploading far more info and interior pages from my Tales of
Unsurpassed Vanity anthology gradually, issue by issue, so check out the news
dept. on my home page once in a while, ‘cause I’ll be updating it with links
with all the stuff I’ve just uploaded!