Paper Science # 6 …. jobs, employment and more….

Published On November 8, 2011 | By Richard Bruton | Comics, Reviews

Paper Science #6

We Are Words + Pictures

Edited by Matt Sheret

Contributors include Sean AzzopardiKristyna BaczynskiAdam CadwellFrancesca CassavettiPaul DuffieldKyle FoxJames Howard & Kirsten WyleAnne HolidayTom HumberstoneJoe List and Thorsten Sideb0ard.

Really strong Joe List cover on this latest edition of the Matt Sheret designed and edited regular comic paper, with the actual design elements added by Sheret making it really feel newsapaper like this time round. (A clean, art only copy of the cover found here, although thanks to Oli East is the comments I can’t look at the cover without a terrible image coming to mind.)

(UPDATE – 9th Nov: Matt gets in touch to point out the great design is all the wwork of Joe List)

But although it’s ostensibly about jobs, employment and the world of work, the strips are some of the most esoteric and varied as we’ve found in this latest run, with the artists often taking a roundabout look at the world of work, in fact, with three artists in here deciding to relocate at least a portion of what they do into space, it probably says much about their relationship with “regular” non-artistic work!

Some favourites…..

Her work thus far hasn’t always stood out to me, but suddenly, with more space than usual; 4 of the paper’s 16 pages, Kristyna Baczynski really delivers a strip that takes the everyday nature of work, and subtly observes before expanding into beautifully gentle flight of fantasy – or perhaps it’s real? – either way the strip Looking Up works so well.

Lovely, really really lovely. Baczynski’s the artist in residence at this years Thought Bubble festival in Leeds (14th-20th November). If you do get a chance, go see her there. And say hello to Matt Sheret as well, he’s writer in residence.

Sean Azzopardi does the “fit four pages worth of panels onto one newspaper page” thing, and manages to deliver a sizeable bit of story into just one page.

Like Baczynski, he’s looking at the work day, but here it’s more autobiographical, less idealised, the grind of the working day established, lunch and home time the highlights of a nondescript day. And these highlights break out of Azzopardi’s rigid, strongly bordered panel structure that describes moments across his day.

But the best thing here, beautifully drawn by Tom Humberstone, written by Anne Holiday, is the gorgeously poetic In The Running.

An esoteric/sideways impression of what “work” can actually mean to some people…. to you it may be 9-5, the job. To others it can be a lifestyle, putting in a “shift” doing something interesting, something essential, something they feel driven to do. Such is the case here, with Rebecca taking a small obsession and turning it into a regular thing, not necessarily clocking on, but attending to watch the object of her affection / interest / obsession with a regularity of employment. And then we see the other side, the object of Rebecca’s observations, and she’s just as dedicated to her work, in her own special way.

Or maybe it’s something completely different, maybe I’m reading too much into it. Maybe not enough. Doesn’t matter a bit… lovely.

Finally, worth it just for the idea of the ultimate outsourced call centre and that gorgeously deep blue colour… Outer Sourcing by James Howard and Kirsten Wyle

That’s not all of it…. and this time round I didn’t even get chance to talk about Adam Cadwell’s ace all-ages The King Of Things – possibly cause I’ve gone on about part one here, but mostly cause it’s part 3 and I’ll wait till the concluding part next time to talk about it…. damn good though. Added Frank Sidebottom this time as well.

I didn’t even get to mention Paul Duffield’s beaut of a poster as well. I still say it’s a waste of page count in a newspaper this size, but my word, it’s a damn fine waste of space!

Paper Science continues to impress, both with the quality and variety of each issue. This latest is available for £3 at the Paper Science shop, where you can also get copies of issues 34 and 5, and get a subscription that includes issues 4-6 plus January’s forthcoming Paper Science 7.

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About The Author

Richard Bruton
- Started in comics retail aged 16 at Nostalgia & Comics, Birmingham. Now located in Yorkshire, he's written for the Forbidden Planet International Blog since 2007. Specialising in UK Comics and All-Ages comics, Richard's day job in a primary school allowed him to build the best children's graphic novel library in the country.

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