It’s almost been three weeks since my last post and I am surprised that it has taken so long for me to post anything else. But I have not been idle and I have been working on a couple of things for Down The Tubes. One was completing the Jeff Bevan article, which is paying tribute to a D C Thomson staff artist that worked there for over thirty years and has not even got a mention on Lambiek which is almost criminal. But when you consider how many artists were not credited in British comics, we should be glad that we can put a name to some of them and hope that we will eventually identify them all.
Just so you know when you are looking at a Jeff Bevan piece, here is a cover and a panel from one of the serials that he contributed to. The cover is from Warlord issue 74 dated 21st February 1976. This is a perfect example of why Jeff’s work has stood the test of time. It is a clear picture that grabs at the eye and keeps your attention. It’s no small wonder that Jeff did over 900 covers for D C Thomson when he produced work of this calibre.
But the colourisation of art can sometimes make it difficult to ensure that you are looking at the same artist, so just to make sure that we are all on the same artist, I have included an example from ‘Ruthless Ruff of the RFC‘ that was published in Hotspur issue 172 dated 2nd February 1963 which shows Jeff’s inks perfectly.
Gorgeous aren’t they? But that is not all that has been keeping me busy. I have also done some work on one of my pet projects that John Freeman has passed to me. And that pet project is maintaining the Down The Tubes UK and Eire Comic Shop map. It’s a fairly easy thing to do. And I try to publicise it far and wide as it is a go to page for me whenever I go off my beaten track. And it means that instead of trying to find a comic shop that may or may not be still trading according to the internet, I can go to this one stop map and it will tell me where those shops are. And I would like to think that any comic fan in the UK can also use it for the same purpose so that when they travel around the UK, it saves them a bit of detective work.
So if you are reading this and you know of a shop that is not represented on the map, then let me know and I will add them in.
Now what else has been keeping me from blogging? Oh yes, I went and spent Saturday 20th February 2016 at the Falkirk Comic Mart. I didn’t pick up much at the Mart, but I did pick up the absolute gem of a dozen Commandos from a second hand dealer and Comics, Trading Cards and Collectables managed to make me smile when I picked up four Alan Class comics, two Beezers from the 1960s and eight Lions from 1970.
However my friend Stephen and I made them smile as we worked our way through the 1980s Bunty comics that were there as we tried to figure out which artists needing crediting. The sight of two gentlemen trying to figure out if there were any Norman Lee covers had at least one of them chuckling.
On Sunday 21st February, I picked up a couple of monster coffee table books from one of our local auction houses cum second-hand dealer. One is the Edgar Rice Burroughs autobiography by Irwin Porges and the other is Spider-Man: The icon by Steve Staffel. And the seller threw in the 1996/1997 Comic Price Guide by Duncan McAlpine as a gesture of goodwill when I started enthusing about all British comics.
I returned to that auction house as one lot lured me back. And that was a pile of early D C Thomson annuals from the 1960s. I was going to leave them, but after a quick flick through and spotting an early Ron Smith in one of the Bunty annuals, then I knew that I could not resist them.
And if that wasn’t enough, I have three conventions to attend in the next few weeks. The first one will be Saturday 27th February 2016 when I will be attending the inaugural Capital Science Fiction Convention at Meadowbank in Edinburgh. The second event is a week later, on Saturday, 5th March 2016 at Dunfermline Comic Con, which is another first time event. And the third will be when I will be working in the Edinburgh International Conference Centre at Edinburgh Comic Con.
So if there are no posts, then at least I am getting my excuses in early! Hopefully I will meet some of you at one or more of these events.