Showing posts with label kevin patrick. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kevin patrick. Show all posts

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Newton Comics - The Rise & Fall - Daniel Best Interview

Daniel Best's pozible campaign for his book on Australian publisher Newton Comics book is in it's last twenty hours. Daniel has met his target but I'm sure would welcome any more contributions to support the production costs of the book. I asked Daniel a few questions via email about his background in comics and his forthcoming book.

Please consider supporting Newton Comics - The Rise & Fall pozible campaign here.

What were the first comics you read?

The first comics that I can remember reading was the Death of Gwen Stacey issues of The Amazing Spider-Man, way back when they were released in the early 1970s. My mother taught me to read, but insisted that I read books, not that she had anything against comic books.

When did you first encounter Newton Comics?
I first encountered Newton Comics when they were released in 1975/1976. They were cheaper than the American versions and usually contained far more interesting material.  The posters and swap cards, along with the iron-on transfers also sold me - I'd buy them and chop them up mercilessly - swap cards in school books, posters on walls and iron-ons on shirts. But, hey, that's what you did as a kid in the 1970s. I didn't know, nor did I care, that these things would be worth anything down the track. Newtons were perfect for children - the true disposable comics.
What attracted you to researching comics history?
I've always had a fascination with history in general and, more often than not, it's the stories behind the official or published stories that have interested me the most. I first became interested in learning about comic book history in the early 1980s when I discovered magazines like The Comic Journal, but my interest really picked up when I found a battered copy of All In Color For A Dime at a library book sale for ten cents. That changed my outlook on comic books and comic book history in general. From there I discovered some old Alter Egos and a few FOOMs at a second hand store and never looked back.

The same second hand store used to sell me comic books for between five and ten cents each - from 1981 to 1984. They'd get stuff in like the John Byrne X-Men, Iron Fist, old Gil Kane and John Romita Spider-Man's, Silver Age Marvels and the like for peanuts. But never any DC. Like an idiot I lost the lot.

At what point did you consider turning your research into Newton Comics into a book?

I started to get interested in Newtons again in the early 2000s when I found a copy of The Amazing Spider-Man #1. I wanted to know what the story was behind these comics. I knew about the many Australian reprint comics, mainly the DC reprints that KG Murray did in the 1970s and 1980s, the Federal and Yaffa reprints of Marvel and the Gredown reprints of rare horror material, but these were new to me, in a way. Old, familiar comics, but new in their own way.  I hopped on the internet and did a search and found...nothing.

Then Robert Thomas did his brilliant Newton Comics article for The Sunday Observer (which used to be owned by Maxwell Newton, the same guy who owned Newton Comics) and I was hooked. I started collecting them and writing about them on my blog and there was a great interest. From there I began to interview people who were involved with Newton Comics and, once Robert and myself sat down and compared notes, I thought, "There's a book in here." That was in 2005.

I then caught up with Kevin Patrick in Melbourne. What he doesn't know about Australian comics isn't worth knowing, but he admitted that he didn't know a lot about Newton. I mentioned the idea of a book and he replied that nobody has ever written a book about an Australian comic book company, so why not be the first? By then I was really leaning towards it.  On the same weekend I was chatting to Philip Bentley, who founded Minotaur Books in Melbourne, who said, "You know, Maxwell Newton was named a spy in Parliament." That sold me. I started work on it in 2007, once I finished the Jim Mooney book, and I've been working on it ever since.  Now it's ready for publication!

Those three guys, Robert, Kevin and Phil, have been brilliant helps along the way, sharing ideas, research and allowing me to bounce things off them.

Daniel's blog Oh Danny Boy has a wealth of articles on Australian and American comics.

Images from the Newton Comics facebook here.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Paper Trail

A gem from Cakeburger.

The Caravan of Comics makes it's way to the Fantagraphics bookstore and gallery this weekend for presentations and a screening of Graphic Novels! Melbourne!.

Caravan members recently guested on Dans Ta Bulle podcast.

Meredith Van Halen writes about decontextualisation on tumblr.

Tim Danko has a Pozible campaign for Tim Danko's Comic Book.

The steamrolling monster of  Ladies Auxiliary Night at Squishface studios in Melbourne happens again at the end of this month with Ceili Braidwood and Lauren Hills and Sophie Parsons Cope (aka Soufex).

Have you looked at Moonbeard yet?

Parker and Emdin's Time Toilet.

Darien Zam writes about an obscure New Zealand confectionery brand.

Sarah Laing shares her recent contribution to the Nga Pakiwaituhi NZ comic exhibition.

Interview with Darren Koziol at The Australian Comics Journal.

 Australian comics Kevin Patrick interview excerpt with the State Library of Victoria.

Frank and Becky are part of a kickstarter campaign to fund publication of a Capture Creatures hardcover.

Alice Online reviews Joshua Santospirito's The Long Weekend.

To round things out, a series of covers from Australia editions of Harvey Comics' Mazie from 1955. Mazie was published in Australia by three series from  Magazine Management, Jubilee Publications and Approved Publications. Cover artwork is likely the work of prolific Harvey artist Warren Kremer (June 26, 1921 – July 24, 2003). Kremer was the creator of or helped refine many of the most well known Harvey characters, including Casper the Ghost, Hot Stuff, Joe Palooka, Little Audrey, Little Max, Richie Rich, and Stumbo the Giant.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

More Kolynos Toothpaste Advertising

  Syd Miller's Red Gregory and The Little People

I wrote about Kolynos Dental Cream advertising here, suggesting their print campaign was likely the work of an Australian cartoonist. Comics Historian Kevin Patrick has suggested it may have been the work of Syd Miller who produced an early fantasy series for Smith's Weekly, Red Gregory and the Little People, which was collected as two comic books in the 1940's. Stylistically the work on Red Gregory is very similar to the Kolynos advertisements. Miller also had a strong record in doing comic strip advertisements, most notably as co- creator of "Chesty Bond", in the mid-late 1930s. Kevin suggested Miller as a the likely artist, "... Based on similarity of linework, depiction of curvaceous women, etc."

 Syd Miller's Fatty Finn's Comic

Red Gregory and The Little People Page 5

In response to a suggestion from myself about the disparity between lettering/calligraphy styles in Red Gregory and the Little People and Kolynos work, Kevin commented, "The quality of lettering/calligraphy would have to have been of higher standard for a business advertisement client like Kolynos. Comic books/strips would have been a nice sideliner earner for Nicholls, no doubt, but wouldn't have paid as much as advertising work, I suspect."

 Red Gregory and the Little People comic circa 1940's

Red Gregory and The Little People Page 4

Samples of Kolynos advertisements from the Australian Woman's Weekly

Red Gregory images sourced from the Rare Books Collection, Monash University Library (Melbourne, Australia) [ Thanks to Kevin Patrick for additional information.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Virgil Reilly Film Illustrations

 Virgil Reilly 1964

Amongst the prolific illustration work produced by Virgil Reilly during the twentieth century were film posters for newspaper advertising. The following Reilly illustrations featured in the Sydney Evening Standard during 1920.

Kevin Patrick wrote of Virgil Reilly's career in comics here.

Wartime illustrations by Virgil Reilly here.

Gallery of Reilly's painted illustrations for the Australian Woman's Weekly here.

Sample of Reilly's sequential work in Rocket Squadron #3 (Red Circle Press, 1952)

Sources:, Drawing From life - Vane Lindesay (State Library of New South Wales,1994)