PROTO COMICS: 1975-1979

Like most cartoonists, my first comics were drawn in pencil on scrap paper during grade school when I was supposed to be paying attention. But in junior high I got serious and started making fully inked, colored, and hand bound mock-up 32 page comics.

 

I did 6 issues of Ultra Klutz (a torturous parody of Ultraman), 4 issues of The Justice Chumps (a superhero parody), 4 issues of Alpha Centauri (a sci-fi series), and 3 issues of Shnerd (a parody anthology). This was very Mad Magazine type stuff, but a little seedier and also influenced by underground comics. All these editions were lost in 1996, with the exception of these two tiny b&w halftone covers made for an editorial in a subsequent "real" issue of Ultra Klutz in 1986.







UNDERGROUND COMICS: 1981

My comics career officially began in 1981 with my first self-published underground comic book, a reworked Ultra Klutz #1 (commonly referred to as Ultra Klutz '81). With fresh-faced enthusiasm, I printed 10,000 copies of this raunchy and still very crude parody of 1960's Japanese monster tv. The book was inspired by underground comics, but I failed to notice that their peak period was 1967-1973, leaving this book completely without a market in 1981 (until it became a "collectable" in 1986 and sold out).

 















SMALL PRESS COMICS/
ULTRA KLUTZ (V3): 1984-1985


When the underground Ultra Klutz flopped, I retreated to music and the Father & Son tomfoolery, but in 1984 I discovered the existence of photocopy 'zines. This rejuvenated me to get back in the comics game, which was my one true career goal. I rebooted Ultra Klutz (again) with a new #1, this time more influenced by Jack Kirby (The New Gods) and Dave Sim (Cerebus) which resulted in more of an "epic" type of series than pure parody. I also submitted several short stories and strips to other small press publications to try and proliferate my name in this little genre. In the space of a year and a half, I did just that, and released five issues of the new Ultra Klutz, which by the latter issues were getting established in retail stores and select distributors.

 








































ULTRA KLUTZ: 1986-1988

If this were an episode of VH1 Behind The Music, then this would be the part where I was signed to the majors and hit it big. I self-published the aforementioned Ultra Klutz (version 3) zines as full blown comics with North American distribution and had a hit. The first issue sold 18,000 copies. I continued on with it as a monthly series for the next two years.

 
 
 
 
 
 

"ULTRA KLUTZ is dynamite! Funny, boisterous, thoroughly original." 
-- Scott McCloud, UNDERSTANDING COMICS

 
Ultra Klutz was my obsession during the 1980’s. Although the comic book series began as an Ultraman parody, it evolved into a complex interplanetary comedy soap opera that for the most part defies description. Always consistent was my unquenchable enthusiasm for the series and keeping the publication going, which was as much a part of the series as the story itself. A bust in the independent comics boom led to the series sales dropping to 10k, to 5k, to 2k over the course of those two years. It went bi-monthly with issue 24, and took a year-off hiatus after 27 when I could no longer make a living from it.
 






















THROUGH THE HABITRAILS: 1989-1992

I made a major career shift with sudden turn to a collection of dark humored short stories about life on-the-job and beyond. Based on working as an illustrator for a newspaper and graphic design house, the opening installment, "Increasing the Gerbils," introduces you to a surreal and strangely symbiotic world in which the precious life fluids of the worker are drained like tree sap to be fed to the company gerbils, which scurry through a network of tubes throughout the offices. The semi-autobiographical nameless hero tackles marriage, inter-office romance, fellow dysfunctional workers and banal tasks, or attempts to leave the company behind entirely and search for that elusive something more. As you progress Through the Habitrails, the short stories combine to form a larger novella which spirals towards a dramatic conclusion.

 

Through the Habitrails dramatically advanced my career from a "small presser with a fluke hit and cult status" to a respected peer with critical acclaim. The series was originally published in chapters in the Will Eisner Award winning anthology Taboo. One of my installments, "Escape #2: The Dry Creek Bed" gained me my first Eisner nomination for Best Short Story of 1992.

 

Sadly, even Taboo wasn't safe from the ever declining comics market, and although I was paid for all of the installments, many of them didn't see print when Taboo was cancelled.































FATHER & SON: 1994-1997

After finally completing Habitrails, Ultra Klutz, and its sequel, Lost Laughter, I had a clean slate. My old Father & Son characters suddenly seemed to have more potential in light of the emerging generation gap stereotype of the time: The self-righteous ex-hippy boomer vs. the gen-x slackers. In reality, my characters were more WWII generation vs. blank generation, but I could see them in these new roles perfectly. And considering even my critically acclaimed Habitrails wasn't paying the rent, I wanted to do something more commercial and make a living from it. I drew the first issue on spec and shopped it around.

 

I landed a four issue contract with Kitchen Sink Press (a well established publisher going back to the underground days), for what I believe was their last original humor series. It sold well initially (nearly 4,000 copies) but not well enough to weather the constantly dwindling market and distributor consolidation wars going on at the time (from which Kitchen Sink ultimately did not survive past 1997).


Despite jabs from the press of it being a "sell-out," I got two more Eisner nominations from 1995 for BEST LIMITED SERIES and TALENT DESERVING OF WIDER RECOGNITION. Then Caliber Press in conjunction with American Entertainment offered to publish Father & Son monthly with hopes in exploiting it with media deals outside of comics. They wanted a free ride, though, which I found out after creating two more issues (a verbal agreement to pay in advance of publication evaporated). I retained the material and published it myself in 1998 as the double-sized "Like, Special #1."

 

As you can see I re-tooled the characters again, stepping away from the fading grunge look, and even made these cool animation style model sheets.

 
 

Now, for the current webtoons, I have sent them back in time to the styles of the early 80's where they belong. Considering my animation is as limited as it was the early 80's, maybe that's more appropriate.











































































































































































































































































































































































































LEAVING COMICS (NICHOLSON'S LAST SMALL PRESS TIRADE): 2005

In 2005 I stopped obsessively pushing myself down the vanishing highway of the American printed comic book market. Even though they bloomed and have been legitimized as an art form, comic books are no longer a mass medium, no longer a way to make an even meager living. My goals have not just been artistic, but to sell a lot of copies, just like the role models I emulated in the 70s, 80s and even the 90s. This pursuit was like climbing a peak on a sinking island. When I got to the top I was back at sea level. A stable, year after year circulation of even 2,000 copies on a creator owned comic book series has been proven impossible. *sigh*, life goes on.

I've had some real highs to be sure. Six Eisner Award nominations, fantastic fan mail, and some great reviews that fill my scrapbooks. My first three series started off strong, with sales around 18,000 (Ultra Klutz), 10,000 (Habitrails, via Taboo), and 3,800 (Father & Son), but comics generally have diminishing returns after making a splash. Less sales, less reviews, less mail. I don't take it personally. In a shrinking medium, retailers and distributors struggle to make room for something new to break the shrinking cycle, but are forced to cut everything else 5-10% per issue to do so, even if they believe in those titles 100%. Each of those series eventually dropped below the 1,200 copy mark (the financial break even), even though I was improving as an artist and promoting more aggressively. I dutifully completed those stories, sort of riding on the fumes of my old passions, with blinders on to the fact that the potential I grew up with was not really there any more.

In 1997 I "quit comics forever" for about six months or so. Then I started Colonia. I decided I hadn't given it my personal best yet. My more recent work had been getting polluted by obsessing over sales, so I focused totally on the art and the back story research. I was rewarded with a new lease on life. The first issue sold 3,000 copies. Including the second printing and trade paperback collection, that first story now has cumulative sales of over 5,000. Wow! That kicks ass.

But the old patterns returned. By 2004, after busting my ass with a bi-monthly schedule on the 9th, 10th and 11th issues, and spending $3000 in advertising, the sales slid down below the 1,200 copy break-even. I held out hope that readers were not buying the single issues in anticipation of trade paperback reprints, but the second of those (collecting issue 6-11) came out the following year and only sold 300 copies. That was the final blow. I could not dust myself off and dutifully complete Colonia when it was spiraling into obscurity, as I had on other series in the past.













































GHOST TOWN AND DESERT TREK PHOTO ESSAYS: 2010-Present

In the year 2000 I enbarked on a four day 1600 mile tour of California and Nevada deserts. This led to nearly all my vacationing being done in remote corners of desert parks and BLM lands. In 2010 I decided to start photo journaling all of these adventures via Flickr. They will bore you to tears if you aren't passionte about the majesty of the desert and the vanishing ghost towns, but if you are, these 30 treks include over 3,000 photos, details of the routes and locations, and each photo is georeferenced and mapped.

 

GHOST TOWN / DESERT TREKS















ANIMATION: 1978

At age 15 I got a super-8 camera and made several animations and claymations, the most ambitious being the seven minute full color Justice Chumps cartoon.

 



























FATHER & SON (V1): 1982-1984

Long before the real Father & Son comic series by Kitchen Sink Press, the characters existed in the form of doodles, home made comics, and even musically in some of the "cartoon bands" we used to record in our music projects. This was purely for private goofs and I never had any intention of trying to do anything commercial with them until the 90's.

 















LIVE ACTION FILMS & VIDEOS: 1985

Because I was 22 years old and brimming with energy, I decided a quarterly zine and recording projects on top of college was not enough, so I dusted off the old super-8 and made some Father & Son films. Then I realized a video camera was that much easier. Below are a few scenes.

 
 
 
In addition to Father & Son I started using video for our cartoon bands like "Big Z and the Speed Freaks", performing Call of the Wired.
 






























































































































NICHOLSON'S SMALL TIRADE: 1989

When Ultra Klutz was on hiatus for a year I made a brief return to photocopy small press. In this self-examination of creativity and the search for audience, I openly criticized the faults and self-delusions of the small press community, which caused some heated controversy in its original release.

 
 








ULTRA KLUTZ: 1990-1991

 

Despite my growing success with Habitrails, my Ultra Klutz obsession was still very much alive and I released issues 28 to 31. Sales continued to drop and the series went on hold indefinitely. In a last ditch effort I created Ultra Klutz Dreams, a series of stand-alone short stories that were created for an anthology comic in 1991.  They were more absurd and funny than the main series (which was getting more dramatic), with a clean art style meant to be reminiscent of animated cartoons. The anthology folded faster than Ultra Klutz itself and I eventually issued the short stories in a stand alone comic in 1998.

 
 






LOST LAUGHTER: 1993-1994

In perhaps one of my worst career moves, I channeled my new found dark humored skills on Habitrails into my still active Ultra Klutz obsession, in the form of an Ultra Klutz sequel. Lost Laughter was a subtle and eccentric series that started with a basic premise: A comic book universe that was once lighthearted and whimsical is now "doom and gloom" (bleak revisionist history was a big trend in comics at this time). In my stab at it, it is the Ultra Klutz characters and settings that go Kafkaesque. The story is set in motion when some of the characters begin regaining memory of the simpler times, and stumble upon clues that explain just how this transformation occurred. A race ensues to solve the mystery and get the universe put back to right before it decays into unmanageable chaos.
 
 
Lost Laughter was my biggest sales disaster. I released four issues and only survived bankruptcy due to the fact that it was made possible by a grant from the Xeric Foundation. I dutifully finished the series in three additional chapters in the Caliber Press anthology Negative Burn.















































































NO REGRETS / THE DREAMING: 1996

In late 1994 DC Comics' Vertigo imprint invited me to write some issues of The Dreaming, a spin off of the popular Sandman series, which was just in the planning stages. I worked on a proposal for a five issue story arc called No Regrets, but they decided it would be best if I start over with a single issue focusing on their Mervyn Pumpkinhead character, but that I would also draw it. Writing and drawing a single issue was actually more appealing than writing a multi-issue story arc. For reasons unknown or long forgotten, it took until January of 1996 to actually receive contracts and a green light from Vertigo so I could proceed. By then I had taken the No Regrets story and condensed it down and drew it myself. It was published in chapters in the Negative Burn anthology (#30-#36) by Caliber Press. This was never collected into a single book so I've posted an online version: NO REGRETS

 
 
But getting back to The Dreaming, the money was great (over $300 a page for script, pencils and inks combined) and all delays aside I turned in some top notch work. It also has pro lettering by Todd Klein and excellent color by Danny Vozzo. It was later collected in the Vertigo trade paperback, Through the Gates of Horn and Ivory.  I believe all of the Vertigo trade paperbacks are available at amazon.com. 

Click here for a preview of a few pages from my story, "Day's Work, Night's Rest"

 
 


























































COLONIA: 1998-2005

The birth of COLONIA is pretty simple, really. In 1997 I had finally finished all the series I had wanted to do since childhood. I had an even cleaner clean slate than ever before to work with. At the time there was bit of a movement away from gritty and dark humored comics, and towards more back to basics adventure comics that could be enjoyed by "children of all ages." I wanted to do something of this type, and I wanted to take very a traditional approach to comics. I was also crowding out my creativity with the desire to make a living from it. For this series, it was all about the story and the art. I would keep the day-job while doing it, and sales were secondary.

 

Once I got the notion of creating a fantasy-adventure series that was set in the New World instead of the Old World, I felt I had something I was excited about working with. And once I drew the first sketch of Adarro, the old man-of-fish, I knew this was it. I embraced the use of reference for the first time in my career, and set out to essentially learn to draw all over again, rather than keep repeating my old habits. For the story, I spent a good six months just daydreaming about it (instead of my typical meticulous note-taking). Characters began populating my head, the back story and logic of this world began to brew, and it became unstoppable. I think I had the first five issues written before the debut issue went to press. Unlike past series, where stories came during fits of insomnia or while dutifully sitting at a typewriter, the COLONIA stories have all come to me of their own will while I've been out hiking.

In the first issue of Colonia Jack and his two uncles wash ashore of an unfamiliar island, after escaping the hands of the pirate Cinnabar. Still unsure of where, or when, his is, Jack encounters a man made of fish and long lost Spanish Conquistadors. The most rational being he meets is a talking duck named Lucy, who is just as unfamiliar with the world Jack comes from as he is of hers. As they consider joining forces, they are shanghaied by yet another band of pirates. Click below for a tour of the first eight pages of Colonia #1.

A Colonia Preview

In the first five issue story arc of Colonia, Jack meets a Norwegian colonist named Kelsey during his adventure aboard the pirate ship of Anne Reed and Bonnie O'Malley. Aside from the unpleasant prospect of spending his summer in forced labor, there's also the matter of arriving in the waters of the dreaded Fin-Men, and keeping duck soup off the menu. While Cinnabar catches up with Uncle Pete and Uncle Richard back on the island, Jack experiences his first boarding party. Also, Adarro, the old man-of-fish, arranges for Jack to meet the eerie mermaid Teela, who answers the question of how our trio from Massachusetts got to be in the world of Colonia. Jack is eventually reunited with his uncles, only now they are all under the thumbs of both Cinnabar and the pirate queen Anne Reed. A clever plan must be hatched to regain their freedom, as they face a marooning on the island of the Ghost Ship.

Colonia #3 Preview

Colonia #5 Preview


In the next story arc of Colonia, the ship runs aground and the travellers turn from the sea to the interior. Faced with seemingly endless miles of inhospitable Florida swampland, they are victims of a cruel irony. All of the water is tainted, perhaps by magic, and there is not a drop to drink. Their trek takes them to an old Spanish fort, which is populated, yet has no visible means of entry. The secret to the fort unlocks a secret to all of the New World Colonian Hemisphere. Heading North in search of a civilized port town, Jack and company meet Sally, who hails from a nearby Pagan village. While these villagers live in harmony with the New World, they are feared by the superstitious pirates who hail from the Old World. Fears turn to reality when Sally’s ability to "way-hop" are given a sudden and dangerous boost by Jack, and they vanish into an alternate reality.

Colonia #8 Preview

In the last story arc of Colonia, Jack and company finally arrive in the port town Cartier, where the barmaid at the Pelican Inn bears a striking resemblance to Teela the mermaid, Melmo the confounding beast has a conversation with Adarro down at the docks, and down-and-out pirates Stuart and Marco try and sell our heroes a ship. Their plans are interrupted by rumors of an old man in the hills, who, like them, seems 300 years out of place. His name? What else... Rip Van Winkle. They take a detour to find him with hopes he has a clue to how they arrived in the world of Colonia in the first place. Perhaps the most surprising twist yet! After finally negotiating their new ship, the entire town of Cartier is being held hostage by the notorious pirate Smokebeard, unless some brave individual will deliver him a chest of medicine. Cinnabar rises to the occasion, and Teela the mermaid has a run-in with Jack, setting up anticipation of further intrigue.

Colonia #10 Preview

Ad used on the final Colonia Story Arc

All eleven issues of Colonia are collected in two trade paperbacks, published by AiT/PlanetLAR. COLONIA: ISLANDS & ANOMALIES and COLONIA: ON INTO THE GREAT LANDS. They both contain unpublished sketches and the best of the text back matter sections. One of the books is missing a page, which can be found here: The Missing Page.

In 2005 I began work on the next collection COLONIA: THE WAY HOME. Unfortunately, I only created this cover, some fragmented scripts, and 17 pages of thumbnails before making the decision to stop making comics.

In case the cover looks familiar, it's a tribute to Jack Kirby's Kamandi #11.

The Way Home thumbnails
























































FATHER AND SON TOONS: 2007-2009

I thought when I finished comics that I could just have a day job, hike my hikes, and enjoy life, but I don't seem to be able to do that. I get kinda itchy and feel short circuited when not doing something creative that I think will reach people, so I needed a new outlet. I've always loved animation but historically it was too expensive and time consuming. I got some software from ToonBoom Studios and after a learning curve started having fun with it. It's still pretty time consuming so I was not animating so much as making audio comics. I still drew the backgrounds and most of the elements with traditional ink on bristol (because I'd rather be sitting at a drawing table than a computer if possible), and then scan them in. I made four that way and got a digital tablet for the fifth to try drawing more directly in the software.

 

The nice thing about web animation is I no longer had to invest in printing and advertising, dealing with distributors and waiting on pins and needles for purchase orders, or filling my closets with overstock. When I finish one, I just slap it on the web. These days everybody is watching movies, tv shows, old music videos, and various forms of mindless entertainment on their PC. It's a busy world competing for our attention out there, but at least there is a potential to grow an audience than to be guaranteed to lose it in the old print world. I hope to try it again some day.




























All images ©2010 Jeff Nicholson, except Spore photo by Becky Dunn ©1986 The Orion, Taboo #5 cover ©1991 SpiderBaby Grafix & Publications and ©1990,1991 Jeff Jones, The Dreaming #15 cover ©1997 DC Comics.

F&S Toon Home  

























MUSIC: 1980-1992

Unlike cartooning, which goes back to my earliest memories, music started in the teen years. Also unlike comics, which I later made a career of, playing and recording music always remained a hobby for me. Just for fun with no professional pretensions.

 

My brother Richard and I made mock albums under various pseudo names and with various friends, and in the latter years joined real bands that gigged and recorded on more and more sophisticated equipment. To give you an idea of the depth of material, when I filter my iTunes for "home music," there are 18 bands representing 54 albums, and 591 songs. Below are the liner notes and cover art of my burn-it-yourself CD era compilation, JEFFOLUTION, which touches on some of the recording projects and bands.

WHAT, WHY, IS JEFFOLUTION 1980-1988?

This is sort of a "best of" my solo junk and the projects and bands I was involved in, but also is an attempt at a worts-and-all representation of things put to tape from ages 17 to 25, including the spontaneous, goofy, and intoxicated stuff.

DRUGS (2:47) excerpt from the "Concord Chronicles" April 1980. My first time playing any stringed instrument, and first time memorizing a song, all caught on tape. Recorded live directly into a boom box condenser mike. Once I knew I could keep time and memorize notes, this whole guitar thing became appealing. However, nothing I recorded in the next two years that I wrote and played guitar on is very listenable.

LISTEN / CONVINCE ME (4:53) as "Low Fidelity" April 1982. "Blue Oyster Cornwell," as a friend described it, since the influences were painfully lodged in Blue Oyster Cult and Hugh Cornwell (The Stranglers). Still, a bad-ass sound on guitar (naively run through a pawn shop country-western bass amp). And we are multi tracking thanks to a hot rodded 8 track cassette player. Nice lead chops by Rich. Now the official “Father & Son” toon theme song.

DRINK AND DANCE (3:46) as "Monocromagnon" February 1983. Now multi tracking on standard cassette deck somehow (Rich had a knack for figuring out how to discriminately de-actitave the erase heads), since 8-tracks have no rewind which gets old. The first song utilizing "Drum Drops" (store bought drum tracks on both vinyl and cassette), which served us well until real bands and real drummers. My guitar solos start to come into their own here.

SLIM'S GENERAL STORE RAG (5:07) as "The Drunken Fools" May 1983. All songs were actually recorded drunk with this bunch. Low tech, no practicing, and you probably had to be there kind of thing, but these beer sessions help keep the spontaneity up and taking ourselves seriously down. Back to the primitive boom box condenser mike live.

TEENAGE PASSION (3:00) as "The Frets" May 1983. Now multi tracking properly on open reel, so the sound is getting clearer. A Buzzcocks wannabe song, if I ever wrote one. We blew up some tweeters trying to use home stereo speakers as monitors. If you listen closely you can hear the landlady’s dogs barking during the first bridge.

GOON OUTTA TUNE (2:15) as "Skizzy and the Screechers" September 1983. Our own version of Spinal Tap. Skizzy is a luck-less, confused metal band with a complete history and three mock albums.

POT, POT, ALL FOR POT (5:44) as "The Totally Boatally Band" December 1983. Although none as prolific as Skizzy, we had a lot of these mock "cartoon" bands. This one based on my pothead cousin. Obviously unrehearsed, recorded without overdubs, but it has some of my best spontaneous leads. Totally bad!

PAROLLED (5:58) as "Skizzy and the Screechers" February 1984. More Skizzy. Our old progressive rock roots coming through on this one. Fun shit if not taken too seriously.

REASONS 2 (3:34) as "The Unrehearsables" April 1984. The Unrehearsables were another side band like the DFs, except recording with a friend who didn't drink. An amazingly creative guy but he never committed any of his ideas to paper or memory. Just while the tape's rolling.

SHE'S KILLING ME (5:41) as "The Unrehearsables" April 1984. There are six or seven albums worth of this Unrehearsables stuff. Here's one of the more raucous.

HARSH WINTER (1:51) as "Monocromagnon" May 1984. Suddenly obsessed with LA hardcore like Black Flag and Circle Jerks, I made my own album of obnoxious 1 or 2 minute wonders. Here are two of 'em.

FUCK (:52) as "Monocromagnon" May 1984. I think I am intentionally devolving musically here.

FRIGHTENED LOVERS (2:53) as "Monocromagnon" October 1984. Jeff sings! College vocal and piano classes give confidence for 80's style ballad. Sharp contrast to the last track.

HELTER SKELTER (3:45) as "The Drunken Fools" December 1984. The DFs also had six or seven albums worth of stuff, probably about half covers like this one.

I HATE THE MEDIA (3:22) as "Monocromagnon" June 1985. Now multi tracking on 4-track cassette, buy the way. I was usually to lazy to take care with the recording process without Rich at hand, but took my time on this one solo.

PARANOID (1:25) as "The Drunken Fools" June 1985. This new member of the DFs can hardly play guitar, but I still have fun with it.

WEIRD DASHBOARD (3:15) as "The Frets" November 1985. Rich and I plunk out an ep of clean, drum-less goofs.

BEFORE I WAS ME (4:31) as "The Killjoys" November 1987. My first band with a real drummer. These sessions are rough live ambient recordings in the practice shed.

GET OUTTA MY FACE (2:48) as "The Killjoys" January 1988. Second round of sessions, this time live to the 4-track machine. The mix downs are crap. We only had one live gig (The Ice House, Chico) after this, then disbanded as a chickenshit way to get a different drummer.

JUST ONE PERSON (4:11) as "Mr Greenjeans" July 1988. My only live show ever recorded (330 Wall Street, Chico). The sound is pretty weak, but I’m glad I caught at least one show before becoming a recording only guy. Listen, someone is actually clapping!

CAUGHT MYSELF THINKING (4:39) as "Mr Greenjeans" July 1988. The drummer died of a drug overdose a few years later, which I guess makes me officially rock and roll.
 

Before moving on to newer music, first a shout out to SPORE, one of my favorite local bands of all time, from my college days in Chico, CA. In an alternate universe they would have been signed and had their day in the sun. My brother played with them for three years, and in 1988, I was a member for one day as new bass player after the original left. But it was not to be and they never played again after that last rehearsal.
 


In late 1988 two things happened that led to a big rush of song writing in my life. I got a bass guitar, and I quit drawing comics for nearly a year. It was the first and only time the bass became the instrument I would primarily practice with and develop new songs from. The fact that it was a second-hand thrash bass left over from SPORE made it all the better.

 
With that rumbly old bass I came up with most everything on my final MONOCROMAGNON album, as well as the JEFF & PAUL album I co-authored with British bloke Paul Edwards, both of which were recorded over the course of 1989 to 1992.

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THE COLLECTED EDITIONS (TRADE PAPERBACKS): 1994-2003

My desire to get the entire Habitrails in print began a new phase in my career, the book editions that could be sold in bookstores as well as comic book specialty shops. I thought I would turn a quick profit on these higher priced items but soon learned they are a long term investment. The first and second editions of Habitrails sold about 1,500 copies each, but over the course of about six years, that's a labor of love and not a livelihood. Still, they legitimized my past work, and unlike the comics issues, are still readily available through Amazon.com and a host of other aftermarket web booksellers.

 

Above: The first out-of-print edition of Habitrails, which does not contain the new introduction or epilogue, and the Nicholson's Tirade trade paperback, which contains all the early 80's small press work as well as the 1989 Tirade mini-comic (also out-of-print). Because the latter is more difficult to find, I've posted an online version:
NICHOLSON'S SMALL PRESS TIRADE

     

THROUGH THE HABITRAILS
$14.95
 
144 pages 
Second edition. Introduction by Stephen R. Bissette. 
ISBN 1-885047-03-7


ULTRA KLUTZ BOOK ONE 
$29.95 
520 pages  
Collects the first 23 issues plus unpublished material. 
ISBN 1-885047-02-9

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ULTRA KLUTZ BOOK TWO: THE WANDERING BEAST  
$24.95  
400 pages  
Collects issues 24-31, Ultra Klutz Dreams 1, and Lost Laughter 1-7, plus unpublished material. 
ISBN 1-885047-04-5

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FATHER & SON: EVERYBODY'S SELL-OUT 
$9.95 
120 pages 
Collects the four Kitchen Sink issues plus one "lost episode" and one unpublished page. 
OUT OF PRINT












































































































































































































































































































































































































ULTRA KLUTZ TV PILOT STORYBOARDS: 2005

I briefly contemplated making a budget live action Ultra Klutz pilot called Ultra Sam. I don't know what I was smoking, but thought it would be fun to make an intentionally crude pastiche, making cheap models and sets in my apartment, getting my girlfriend to sew costumes, and exploiting the patience of my friends to act the parts. I didn't do any of that, but did get as far as writing and storyboarding a complete script. Imagine if you will, that Ultra Sam is a guy in a rubber suit, with a hard shell mask (like on Ultraman), except whenever his mood changes, the hard mask is suddenly different. I still think that would look pretty funny.

 

Here's the link to the complete script. Enjoy!

ULTRA SAM TV PILOT SCRIPT








iTunes LIBRARY: 2006-2007

I distracted myself during my withdrawl from creating comics by building my itunes library from all my CDs and 400 gigs of archived wave files. It took a year and a half to convert, tag, and assign album art for all of it!

 













































HOUSE REMODELLING SLAVE: 2010-Present

The housing crash enabled my wife and I to become first time home buyers in our middle age. Woo-hoo! More specifically, this enabled us to buy a derelict reposessed house that we spend far too much time fixing up. Bleh! At least there are no more landlords.