Saturday 16 June 2007

covers: DeeVee #1,2

D ee Vee was published by a trio consisting of Mick Evans, a freelance graphic designer who was already doing the necessary on Bacchus (the ad for the first DeeVee is on the back of Bacchus #21), Daren White, a chartered accountant who moonlights as a comic book writer and Minty Moore, who was working as a comicbook store clerk back then, all of whom have popped up on this blog from time to time. They launched in Feb 1997 and managed to get Pete Mullins to make a gorgeous knockout cover for their first issue. I attempted to keep up my end on the second issue, but I'm wilting in the shade. The series was an anthology that ran for fourteen issues, with one special during that time titled Life is Cheap by Moore and Single. The Book appeared quarterly and even bi-monthly for the duration of six issues. I drew a serial that appeared in all those issues and was later collected as Alec: How to Be an Artist, considered by some to be my best book. What it really needed, we can see with the advantage of hindsight, is for the character on that cover to have appeared in an eight page story every issue, and to always look as good as she does on there. I think the guys managed to get Pete to illustrate a couple of one-pagers along those lines, but more might have made the enterprise a more resounding success. But who can say? Everything in the business was following the trajectory of Newton's apple in those days. The thing I most like about 'those days' is the complicated ways we got things done. One thing was that I was doing my stuff for DeeVee in exchange for design work and story ideas, but once over a few beers Whitey got onto explaining to me the myriad equations and deals and exchanges by which money hardly ever changed hands but everybody involved felt they came out even, and furthermore, in all those fourteen issues, thanks to Whitey's acuity in such matters, Deevee never lost a cent.
Another thing I enjoyed about that period is that there was a sense of a lively scene here in Brisbane Australia. Pete Mullins had a full colour page in a national magazine, which he must have found time to draw in between all this other stuff. DeeVee were using my mail box at the suburban Paddington Post Office, but just a couple of boxes to the right of mine there was the one rented by the Platinum Grit folks, Trudy Cooper and Danny Murphy. PG was a popular indie comic book here but not known much outside of Australia.
"Platinum Grit began as a self-published printed comic from back in 1994 and was released up to issue 10 in 1998." It's still around nowadays, but in an online* capacity. You can read a whole episode at the site. It has a great quality of Australia about it, in its sense of character and space.
Update: They show it online then collect it in print, a publishing model that is becoming more prevalent of late. Corrected by Drjon. thanks.
After the DeeVee series ended they put out three special editions. Tom Spurgeon has just reviewed one of those.
Finally, a new issue is at the printer! I've drawn thirteen pages in it and I wrote about it on April 16.

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Blogger Christopher Moonlight said...

I'm really looking forward to the new Dee Vee, and I still have all the old issues in my possession. I really loved them. I've tried to get artist together in the past, to do something similar here, but no one wants to know. It's like they all think that someone will come along with a paying gig for them, once they commit to their own business venture, or something like that. I don't know. Maybe they are afraid of success, or don't believe in themselves. All I know is that they piss me off, with all of their talk and no action.

16 June 2007 at 01:58:00 GMT-5  
Blogger drjon said...

Platinum Grit is also available in the more traditional Comic Book and Graphic Novel formats.

16 June 2007 at 03:43:00 GMT-5  
Blogger James Robert Smith said...

Oh, man, that first cover is absolutely beautiful.

16 June 2007 at 05:58:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Eddie Campbell said...

yup. that cover.
Pete Mullins' work, just in case I didn't make that clear. His regular weekly thing in an australian men's magazine was a sexy girl strip, a full colour page every week. I have a few in my files, but i think he sees that as dead and buried.

16 June 2007 at 06:42:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Eddie, I just want to say that this is the best blog on comics that I ever read. You're doing it every day for quite a while, and so far you have managed to make it very interesting, and it's also full of insight tips on drawing and writing...I'm always coming back now and than, and it's always rewarding.


16 June 2007 at 12:36:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Peeboo said...

I believe Minty was the best comicbook store clerk in Brisbane's history (with Mr J, I believe). It hasn't been the same since then.
NObody knows who Lynda Barry or Art Spiegelman is anymore.

17 June 2007 at 06:25:00 GMT-5  

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