Buy The Standard #1 Comic Book!

You’ve been asking, and now it’s here.  The Standard #1 is now available to buy in print from IndyPlanet!  The Standard is a 6-issue comic book miniseries published by ComixTribe, each chapter 28 pages long.  This first issue is written by me, John Lees, is pencilled and inked by Jonathan Rector, colored by Ray Dillon and Mo James, lettered by Kel Nuttall, and edited by Steven Forbes.  It’s been available digitally for a couple of weeks, but now, for $3.99, you can order a physical comic book you can hold in your hands.

Buy The Standard #1 from IndyPlanet.

Wherever you are in the world, the comic is now available for online order.  However, if, like me, you live in the Glasgow, Scotland area, and you are able to wait another couple of weeks, you might want to walk down to your local comic shop to pick up your copy!  From early June, Forbidden Planet, A1 Comics and Plan B Books will all be stocking The Standard #1.  More information on the exact release date as soon as I can get it.  I’ve heard that people have been going to these shops and asking about the comic, and I just want to thank all of you who have been interested enough in the comic to do this.  Keep asking – it’ll let them know there’s interest in this series!

Also, don’t forget, The Standard #1 is still available to buy as a digital comic to read on your desktop/phone for $1.99.  Here are the places you can buy it from:

Graphic.ly

Wowio

DriveThruComics

MyDigitalComics

Thanks again for all your support.  If you buy the comic, be sure to let me know what you think.  I hope you enjoy it!

The Standard #1: On Sale Now!

The Standard #1 is now on sale!

The Standard is a 6-issue comic book miniseries, each chapter 28 pages long.  This first issue is written by John Lees, pencilled and inked by Jonathan Rector, colored by Ray Dillon and Mo James, lettered by Kel Nuttall, and edited by Steven Forbes.  The comic is debuting digitally, published by ComixTribe, and is now available from these platforms, priced at $1.99:

Download PDF from Wowio.

Download PDF from DriveThruComics.

In the coming days, The Standard #1 will also be available from Graphic.ly, Iverse, MyDigitalComics and Oxicomics.  Keep on checking thestandardcomic.comfor updates.

If you would rather have a print edition of The Standard #1 you can hold in your hands, we’ve got you covered.  Soon, you’ll be able to order a copy from IndyPlanet.  This will soon be ready to go, I’m just making a few final checks.  Hopefully, you should be able to get The Standard #1 in print as soon as next week.

Please check the comic out, and let me know what you think!  And keep on checking out thestandardcomic.com for release information and original content!

The Standard: From Script to Page

Following on from a recent interview I conducted with Jonathan Rector, I thought it might be interesting to take a look at the creative process behind a comic book page, and how it goes from words in a script to a completed page.  For this example, I’m using page 7 of The Standard #1.  Here is the original page of script I wrote:

PAGE SEVEN (4 panels)

Panel 1.  The daytime skyline of Sky City, a towering, futuristic metropolis densely packed with skyscrapers.

CAP:                                       SKY CITY.

CAP:                                       30 YEARS AGO.

Panel 2.  The same skyline, but now a giant robot has emerged from behind it, taller than all the skyscrapers.  A radio transmission emits from the robot, though from outside the speaker cannot be seen.

ZARTHOS:                            ALL WILL BOW BEFORE ME!  FIRST SKY CITY, THEN… THE WORLD!

Panel 3.  Inside the control panel of the giant robot, a bald man with a curly moustache, dressed up like your classic mad scientist – Zachary Zarthos – prances around gleefully, hooked up to a headset as he broadcasts his rants.  A young woman – Caroline Cole – lies tied up on the floor nearby.

ZARTHOS:                           I HAVE BEEN MOCKED AND IMPRISONED FOR THE LAST TIME.  HERE BEGINS THE ULTIMATE CONQUEST OF  ZACHARY ZARTHOS!

CAROLINE:                              OH, HELP!  SOMEBODY SAVE ME!

ZARTHOS:                                ARMED WITH MY DESTRUCTO-BOT, NOTHING CAN STOP ME!  HE-HEE!  HE-HEE!

Panel 4.  High in the sky, so high the head of the robot only pops up at the bottom of the panel, The Standard and his sidekick – Fabu-Lad – hover in the air, looking down at their opponent.

THE STANDARD:                   NOTHING?  YOU MUST HAVE FORGOTTEN ABOUT YOUR ARCH-NEMESIS… THE STANDARD!

FABU-LAD:                              AND HIS TRUSTY SIDEKICK, THE MINIATURE MARVEL, THE FANTASTIC… FABU-LAD!

And here was the original thumbnail Jon drew up based on his interpretation of the script (with an added rough character design of Zarthos):

Once this was approved, it was followed up by the proper page of art itself, pencilled and digitally inked by Jon:

The main change between the thumbnail and the final image is that, in the last panel, I requested a tighter shot on the robot, to give us a better look at The Standard and Fabu-Lad.

Here is a first look at this page, as colored by the team of colorist Ray Dillon and flatter Mo James:

Jonathan Rector’s art is gorgeous, so much so that I was convinced for some time that the book was so good black-and-white that it didn’t need color.  I sitl think that the art was strong enough to have supported black-and-white, but still, there’s no denying that the addition of color adds a whole other level to the visuals.

And all that’s left is the addition of Kel Nuttall’s lettering, giving us, revealed for the first time, the completed page 7 of The Standard #1:

Good lettering is such an essential component to the success of the book.  The way the words are laid out help shape the page, and help to define tone and pace.  Kel has done an exemplary job throughout the comic’s development, with this page but one of numerous examples.

Hope you enjoyed the look at the development of a page, as well as the sneak peek at a page of art not included in the preview.  Be sure to check out thestandardcomic.com next week, when I hope to have info on the release of The Standard #1!

The Standard and Free Comic Book Day

ComixTribe, the publishers of The Standard, are joining forces with Red Handed Studios to commemorate Free Comic Book Day with a special showcase comic.  Available digitally from May 7th, The ComixTribe/Red Handed Studios Free Comic Book Day Special will provide a sneak peek at what both publishers have got in store in the coming months.  I’ve had a chance to see the comic, and it’s definitely worth checking out.  It’s FREE, what do you have to lose?

The collection is headlined by an Epic/DynaGirl crossover, co-written by Tyler James and Cary Kelley, the respective creators of the two superheroes.  Epic artist Matt Zolman provides the visuals, giving us a taste of just how beautiful Tyler James’ series is going to look when it goes on sale later this year.  It’s a short, self-contained story, managing to be both hilarious and action-packed, and containing more than enough to make those who know both characters happy, and those who don’t know them into fans.  This story alone is worth checking out the FREE COMIC (I’m gonna keep on capitalising that) for.

Next up is Red Handed Studio’s offering, a solo adventure for DynaGirl.  If her team-up with Epic in the first story piques your interest, this explosive tale – with Cary Kelley’s script beautifully brought to life by artist Harold Edge and colorist Paul Little – is sure to make you a full-blown fan of the superhero single mom.  You can read new pages of DynaGirl every Tuesday and Thursday on www.dynagirlonle.com.

ComixTribe then takes centre stage, starting with a hype package for Epic by Tyler James and Matt Zolman.  There are no completed pages to make up a preview here, with Tyler instead tantalising us by laying out the clever high concept behind Epic – an awkward teenager becomes an all-powerful superhero whose one weakness is getting turned on by pretty girls – and providing us with a sizzle reel of GORGEOUS pencils from Matt Zolman.  This comic simply looks fantastic, and with Tyler James on scripting duties you know it’s going to have a cracking story to go with the visuals.  Check out Epic #0 on Graphic.ly.

Another upcoming ComixTribe title featured is one I’m very much looking forward to: Runners, by Steven Forbes.  I’ve been fortunate enough to read the scripts for the first couple of issues, and am pleased to report that the narrative provides a brilliant twist on the zombie genre.  The preview of the opening pages gives us a glimpse of the twisted tale that lies ahead, as well as a taste of the beautiful artwork by penciller Mac Radwanski and inker Vic Moya.  As good as I knew this comic was going to be, seeing the art has elevated my excitement for it to a whole other level.  Make sure you check out this Free Comic Book Day Special to see why Runners has shot up to right near the top of my “most anticipated comics” list.

I’m forgetting something?  Oh yeah, one more comic to round out ComixTribe’s lineup: The Standard!  It’s the same preview that was posted up on my Standard blog on Friday, but in luscious high resolution, with an extra page – and this one’s a doozy!  I’m excited and grateful that my comic is getting showcased alongside such a high calibre of work.

Every comic featured in this package is worth your attention.  Cary Kelley’s Red Handed Studios put out good stuff, and ComixTribe is set to make a big splash with its output this year.  The comic is FREE, so don’t forget to check it out.  The ComixTribe/Red Handed Studios Free Comic Book Day Special will be available from May 7th, and you’ll be able to buy it directly from thestandardcomic.com within the next couple of weeks.

TheStandardComic.com Launches Today!

Hey folks!

Over the past couple of years, I’ve been developing my first comic book: The Standard.  It is a 6-issue miniseries, each issue being 28 pages long, and in color.  The first issue is due for release April 28th.

The Standard a story spanning across two generations.  One narrative is set in the past, in a colorful, cheery, Silver Age styled past, where superhero The Standard and his sidekick Fabu-Lad battle nefarious supervillains and giant robots.  The other narrative is set in a darker present.  The original Standard has retired, and the former Fabu-Lad has inherited the mantle.  However, this new Standard decided to publicly unmask, revealing to the world his alter ego, Alex Thomas.  Now, The Standard has sponsorship deals, a merchandising empire, and is a reality TV star, making him less a crimefighter than a celebrity.  But secretly, Alex is tormented by what he’s done to the Standard legacy.  He has grown obsessed with the case of a missing girl that nobody else seems to be interested in.  Can he remember what it means to truly be a hero?  Or does fate have other plans in mind for The Standard?

TheStandardComic.com, the official blog for the comic, has now launched.  I’d really appreciate it if you guys would check it out.  I’ll be updating the site daily on Monday-Friday, so there should be plenty of new content to look at.  I hope I can capture your interest enough to make you want to find out more, and perhaps get the comic once it goes on sale!