(image nicked from the Etheringtons blog, apologies!)
This is pretty amazing, it’s fair to say. The Phoenix, the UK’s newest independent children’s comic, reaches its 100th issue today! For a weekly comic, that’s pretty astounding, especially these days when there are so few original content weekly comics for kids around. A MASSIVE congratulations to everyone involved, all the hard-working editorial team as well as the incredible roster of artists and writers. Here’s the to next 100 issues!
You can get The Phoenix in some stores, online, or digitally, so please do check it out www.thephoenixcomic.co.uk. Issue 100 is a BUMPER issue.
For my part, i’ve been lucky enough to draw my strip, Bunny Vs Monkey, for every single one of those issues. And that’s an honour I don’t take lightly! Over the last 100 issues, BvM has featured ridiculous machines, endless minor injuries, and (hopefully) a few story arcs threaded through it all keeping everything nice and mysterious. In this issue 100, for example, we finally find out not only where Bunny came from, but all the other animals too!
Funny thing about Bunny Vs Monkey, I started work on it around 2003, so it’s nearly ten years old. Back then I was developing it for television (that *cough* didn’t work out), so I thought you might be interested to see a bit of painting I did for it back then, to get a feel for it all.
It looks incredibly clunky to me now, and as you can see, both Bunny and Monkey have changed colour. But when I had the chance to pitch an idea to The Phoenix, Bunny Vs Monkey was my first choice. And I’m so glad I’ve had the chance to draw it, it’s given me so much room to explore the idea, the world and the characters, and really build everything up nicely.
Below are some more concept pieces i did before I started the comic, just trying to get a feel for the environments.
I’m currently drawing both Bunny Vs Monkey AND Looshkin, who appears every few weeks or so in his own special 4-page exclusives. It’s a crazy amount of fun, and I can safely say this is the best job in the world.
Thank you, The Phoenix, and everyone who buys it! We will make children’s comics huge again!