Along with a batch of the second issue of Elmer (not to be confused with the children’s picture book featuring the colourful elephant) for our site and stores (it is still hard to find in the UK, so we’re delighted to be able to offer it to new readers), Filipino writer-artist Gerry Alanguilan (probably best known to UK and US readers for work on Superman: Birthright) dropped Kenny a line to let us know what he was up to. Kenny had mentioned that he was interested in the rich tradition of Filipino comics and illustration when Gerry mentioned that he had long term plans to put together a book on that very subject:
“I am actually collecting artwork and scans of artwork for the purposes of putting together an art book, a collection of some of the best works of our greatest artists. I’m taking my time with it, making sure I get in touch with the artists or their families if they’d already passed on. I have no idea when it will be out, a couple of years maybe, even more. But it’s definitely coming out.”
In addition to Elmer (see Kenny’s review of the first issue) from his own Komikero publishing, Gerry has also been busy reworking a piece from his own past, Blood Brothers, a small-press project he created in the Portacio Studio in Manila back in 1997, a comic he persuaded a certain young artist who was training at the studio at the time to work on with him:
“I wrote a short story, which was illustrated by Leinil Francis Yu, before he got all famous with Wolverine. I published it back then as a photocopied mini-comic. Now in 2007, I’ve coloured it, and I’m currently serializing it in full, 2 pages a week in my Ambrosia Digicomics blog. Fans of Leinil Yu might be interested to see his early work, and be fascinated at how far he has come.”
Free online comic and a glimpse into the early work of two established creators? Terrific, more of that kind of thing, please! The third issue of Elmer should be a bit thicker on the page count and so will take a bit longer; the second issue was planned to be larger but Komikon intervened and Gerry wanted it to be ready by then, so the next issue will be larger instead. Which is fine by me, since it means we have more to look forward to; meantime get yourself over to Gerry’s blog for a read, or check out the Komikero site for more information. Then go order the comics. Go on, we’re even doing them at a post-inclusive price to make it as easy as possible.