|Final 'Adam Eterno'. LION 16/10/1976|
This is something I've been considering for a few weeks now, and with today being the end of the year it seemed an appropriate time to bring down the curtain. 2012 has not been a good year. I began the year as I usually do with some optimism but, as the months went on, work became scarcer. Being a freelancer holds no guarantee of security of course and one cannot expect it to. I'm just telling it like it is.
|Final 'Indestructible Man', JAG 29/3/1969|
In previous times there would be new comics springing up to replace work that was lost, but that happens with less regularity now to say the least. Retailers aren't as hospitable towards new titles as they used to be, sales are far lower than they were in the golden age of comics, so publishers naturally have to work within limited budgets. Subsequently, the comics industry has become a more competitive place because there's less work to go 'round. By nature I'm not a competitive person, and certainly not the sort to perceive other cartoonists as rivals to be knocked down to get what I want. There used to be room for all with no need for dirty tricks, but I'm noticing that changing and it's an unpleasant shift. On the whole, the comics industry is a very friendly and relaxed place and most comics folk will look out for each other as best they can. But there's always going to be one or two who'll undercut you and/or fabricate tales to give their own career a leg up. The comics biz is too small for such slyness. People like that always get rumbled eventually.
|Final 'Two Faces of Janus', POW! 7/9/1968|
|Final 'Rubberman', SMASH! 7/9/1968|
When I started Blimey! back in December 2006 I gave no thought to how long I'd be writing it. I've never considered myself a comics 'expert' but I am enthusiastic about the history of comics. I wanted to share some thoughts about old British comics which were mainly neglected by other websites and I was very pleased with the response. (My only regret was spending some time a while back arguing with a couple of trolls and wasters here instead of ignoring them from the outset.)
|Final 'Steel Claw', VALIANT 27/10/1973|
Mention should also be made of John Freeman's Down The Tubes website, which has been running longer than Blimey! and is an excellent place to keep up with developments in the British comics industry, as is the Forbidden Planet International blog. There's also Bear Alley by Steve Holland, a true expert of British adventure comics and pulp books. Bookmark 'em all today!
If you want to keep up with any developments of my career my website will continue to operate at http://www.lewstringer.com/ and I'll try to update my Deviantart page more often over at http://lewstringer.deviantart.com/ .
I'll also be selling off more of my old artwork on eBay next year, so please keep an eye on the following link to see what I put up for auction soon. (Ironically, earlier this year I joked that I was selling off my artwork to pay my mortgage. Guess I shouldn't have tempted fate.)
Trying to end on a positive note, I'm pleased that Rasher will be continuing in The Beano for at least the next few weeks, and the next few days will be busy as I have three Smasher pages to draw for The Dandy Annual 2014 (out next summer). I also have a couple of bits and bobs coming up in BeanoMax soon, and hopefully I'll be drawing a few more pages for Viz next year too.
I should also mention that I'm on the guest list for the Bristol Comic Expo (11th-12th May 2013) so all being well I'll see you there!
|Final 'Thor', SMASH! 8/3/1969|
Anyway, there's just over 1,000 posts on this blog (with this one being No.1,003) so some of you who have discovered Blimey! in recent years may not have seen all of it. If you enter a keyword (such as Ken Reid or Eagle for example) into the search window at the top of the right hand side of this post you'll hopefully find something you're interested in that you haven't read before.
The New Year dawns tomorrow so I hope it's a prosperous one for all of us. Thanks for following this blog over the years and may 2013 bring all of us good fortune, good health, and happiness.
|Final 'The Umbrella Men', DANDY 13/8/1966|