Sometimes writers and artists are just meant to be together. I can’t claim anything than blind editorial luck on this one, but the moment I saw Martin Simmonds‘ artwork for PM Buchan‘s script All Roads Lead to Hell, I knew that I’d got something right.
All Roads Lead to Hell will feature in Disconnected Vol 2, launching in November at ThoughtBubble in Leeds. It’s one of those twisted and macabre tales where no-one is quite what they seem. You’ll love it.
Here’s a little sample of Martin’s art:
How did you get into writing / drawing comics?
Bucky: I’ve wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember. One of my most vivid childhood memories is of writing a short story and my primary school teacher told me that what I’d written was too disturbing. Despite obsessing over comic-books since an early age, it never occurred to me to write one until I was about twenty. I was stuck in this hellish limbo where I was only ever happy after dark, with a drink in my hand. I’d wake every morning in strange places, not knowing how I’d got there or what had happened. After months of self-loathing, sat there alone in my room, I started drawing a comic about my experiences, Everything Is Going To Be Alright.
Martin: Through attending comic cons and portfolio reviews, I met other creators at a similar level who were looking to collaborate on various projects. From there, things have begun to develop and I’ve been lucky to get involved in some exciting projects.
What have you had published?
Martin: I’ve just completed two projects – a story for the Dead Roots anthology and a short piece for Starburst magazine. I’m working on an issue of the Tales of Discord series for Markosia, and I’m the series artist on Eponymous, an ongoing series in Vs Comics which is due to launch at ThoughtBubble.
Bucky: My first two comics were Everything Is Going To Be Alright and What’s Inside A Girl? When I worked for Travelling Man in Newcastle, I co-created an anthology called Blackout which we’re reworking to release at ThoughtBubble this year. I’ve had strips and short stories published in SCREAM: The Horror Magazine and The Bleed magazine and I create comics and write reviews for Starburst magazine.
How do you work?
Bucky: Find a character in my mind, give them a dream and then look for the most harrowing and brutal way possible to take that dream away from them. I seem to go through phases where certain themes and ideas dominate my work. This summer I’ve been thinking a lot about hell….
Martin: I prefer to produce fully painted or digitally painted work and rely heavily on colour and texture rather than line work to create my style. I don’t always work the same way, but my standard process starts with fairly rudimentary penciling, followed by painting and textures, and with inking and outlining as a final stage.
What’s your comics dream?
Bucky: Long form storytelling. I want to enter into a creative partnership where I work with an artist or a group of artists for several years, giving us room to experiment and to build up a compelling cast of characters and then make them fight for the things that they believe in. That’s what I love most about the medium, investing in a good cast of characters, building their lives, and seeing the consequences as everything comes shattering down around them.
Martin: To continue working alongside talented writers and ultimately to produce successful creator-owned material and make a living from it! There are also several titles which had an influence on me when I was growing up and I’d be quite pleased with myself if I could work on them one day, most notably Hellblazer (those McKean covers got me hooked) and 2000AD.
Disconnected Vol 2 will be on sale from Saturday 17th November, both from our groovy online Shop and from the Disconnected table in New Dock Hall at ThoughtBubble in Leeds. If you want to make sure of your copy, you can pre-order by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. It’ll be £5 plus P&P.