What have been your personal cartooning/comics highlights of 2012?
It's been another pretty busy year, but I think having a book I worked on for Harper Collins, Planet Tad, featured briefly on the Daily Show, winning gold in a category of the Illustrators Australia awards and the Oz Comic-Con events in Perth and Melbourne were all standouts.
Who are some of the comics creators that you've discovered and enjoyed for the first time in 2012?
I seem to find new cartoonists and illustrators every couple of weeks, it's kind of part of my process I guess, to keep inspired and connected to what is going on in the world, so it's hard to list them all. But the people I've come back to numerous times this year (as well as in some cases formed some new friendships with) would be Jez Tuya (Brilliant, inspiring up and coming cartoonist and character designer from NZ), Rebecca Dart (Everything she touches is amazing, incredible character, energy and fun).
Tristan Jones (Probably one of the biggest inspirations for me this year in pushing myself to get a little looser and quicker with my own work) and Tony Cliff (Artist on one of my favourite comics/webcomics from the last decade I think, Delilah Dirk). I haven't really read much in the way of comics, but of what I have read Craig Thompson's Habibi stayed with me for weeks after reading. The new Prophet series (Brandon Graham and Simon Roy) from Image comics is a great big ridiculous space opera and Infinite Kung Fu by Kagan Macleod was a fantastic love letter to the history of kung fu in pop culture.
What is something non-comics that you have enjoyed in 2012?
Lots of great movies, Looper, Cabin In the Woods, Dredd, Argo. My one major love outside of cartooning is history and politics, in particular the United States, so i was pretty consumed by the 2012 US election the last 12 months. I've been reading a lot of crime fiction this year especially a number of George Pelacanos' novels plus a lot of visits to the Zoo and the Melbourne Museum this year with the 3 year old.
Have you implemented any significant changes to your working methods this year?
Most of my freelance work is very clean and tight and as i said earlier, inspired by work the likes of Tristan Jones, Simon Roy, Toby Cypress, I've tried to play around with being a little looser with my personal work. So playing around with more blacks, textures and freeing my line-work up a little bit. Hopefully i can take a few more steps in that direction next year.
What are you looking forward to in 2013?
Getting my all ages graphic novel, Clementine Hetherington and the Ironwood Race, co created with and written by Jen Breach further along and to hopefully find her a home (Clementine, not Jen). Completing the Rombies: Ex Legio Mortis graphic novel, written by Christian Read for Gestalt Comics and some other comics and book illustration projects I can't really talk about just yet. The release of the first and second books in the Case File 13 series from Random House and hopefully another Planet Tad will be out next year. I also missed out on a number of planned OS trips this year due to timing and finances so hopefully carving out some time to get to TCAF, SPX or NYC con as well as some more local shows would be great!