I can’t tell you how fantastic and strange it is to be back in this position, working on Blake Undying again after a decade, and having actual concrete news to share with friends and fans. Though I wasn’t able to work on it for years, there hasn’t been a point where ideas and storylines weren’t constantly bubbling to the top of my consciousness. It used to make me wistful for what might have been, because I’d been convinced that I’d never have a chance to play in the Blake Undying sandbox ever again. Now instead of existential dread, what keeps me up at four AM is excitement to get back to work on the project. You have no idea how big a sea change that is for my day to day life.
Blake Undying #1 – “Failure” is nearing completion. I’ve shared some of the panels and pages from the work in progress, and I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge Ezequiel Rubio Lancho who is responsible for the fantastic artwork in the first issue. Less obviously, he is responsible for making me believe in the project’s potential for success. His efforts on behalf of our relaunch are something for which I am extremely grateful.
Until this point, I had been forced to rely on outside agents to move this project forward. Through the original contest submission and subsequent screenplay writing, I had no agency to drive Blake Undying to market. I waited while the property languished for a decade helpless to affect its progress. Now, with the advent of crowdfunding and the exponential increase in the reach of social media, I’m now in the position that I can assemble a team of incredibly skilled artists and publish studio quality comics direct to the reader, both in digital and physical form. Hell, five or six issues from now I even have the channels to release the first Blake Undying trade paperback (a fact which I find simply too awesome to not mention every time I talk about this project). For the first time I have a clear path and a solid business plan to bring Blake to market and unleash him on the world.So I’ve done exactly that, looking through hundreds of portfolios and found some amazing artists from all around the world who are not only very talented, but who are also great collaborators. In the past few days, after having several talks and planning sessions with the team, I am certain that I could not be happier with the people who I’ll be working with. So without further ado, meet the rest of the team.
Jovanna Plata Almeida will be working with Ezequiel doing colors on the remainder of Blake Undying #1 and will be partnered with him going forward on our future issues. Hailing from Mexico City, she and Ezequiel can collaborate both in English and Spanish! Her work is reminiscent of Elizabeth Breitweiser’s, which (I’m told) is a great compliment. Check out her portfolio for a sample of her work.
Starting immediately, we will be working on two issues at once. Ezequiel will begin work on Blake Undying #3 – “Nikki” as soon as he is done with chapter 1, however there are no announcements on the credits for Blake Undying #2 – “Circles” at this time. There are several portfolios of great artists that we’re currently reviewing, and will make a selection soon based on maintaining a consistent look for the comic going forward. Our team hails from all over the world at this point, so together we have the beginnings of a international supergroup (or a live action reboot of Captain Planet).
Together with the two teams, we now have the capacity to complete an issue every month just like a proper studio, and start working through the stack of scripts that have been gathering dust for the past decade. Blake Undying will be launched in a Kickstarter this fall, and through the help of the fans, will be available both physically and digitally via several services.
Before the end of July however, I will be publishing Blake Undying #1 digitally, free to the public. I hope you’ll enjoy it and share it with all your friends who enjoy comics and/or black comedy, and take it with my thanks that you’ve stuck with this group so long, and know that your faith is appreciated. Speaking for myself and the team, we can’t wait to show you what the future of Blake Undying has in store for us.
I’ve also made arrangements to have a storefront for swag up and running soon after the blakeundying.com domain goes live, just in case you want a mug, t-shirt or hoodie with the new Blake Undying logo on it.
Oh yeah, we have a new logo too.
Didn’t I mention that?