Spiralling Wildly

I’m trying to keep up the habit of writing about process in the Patreon early looks, and this time it’s about what goes into deciding where to place the “camera” for panels and an unusual factor that can influence that.

I’m typing this in the wee hours of the morning, having returned home from Calgary Horror Con. I’m always a bit nervous about first time shows, but thankfully it was a rousing success!

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Cait is Employee of the Week AGAIN, because she helped sell a bunch of books at Calgary Horror Con. If YOU want to be Employee of the Week, you don’t have to sell any books at Horror Con, you can just toss a dollar into the tip jar that is the Hell, Inc. Patreon! It is a much more predictable way to support my art, because conventions are like a very tiring form of gambling.

You can also help Hell, Inc. by voting for it on Top Webcomics, which helps bring in new readers. Click on the banner below to vote daily!

Next Week: The spiral, it keeps spiralling. Because it’s a spiral, and that’s really the only thing they do. Read it early on Patreon.

Time Keeps on Ticking

I wrote another Patreon piece about the process of making the strip, in this case focusing on different ways that the same scene can be broken into panels and why those different choices might be made. It’s been fun to get back into the headspace of creation and think about what other versions of the strip might have looked like.

This weekend, I’ll be at the Calgary Horror Con with Hell, Inc. (in RPG and comic form), Hockeypocalypse, GWAR, and probably some other stuff that has interest overlap.

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Cait is Employee of the Week, and will ALSO be at Calgary Horror Con. If YOU want to be Employee of the Week, and also help me keep making art you like instead of continuing to flail about in the chaos that is freelancing. Patreon is the most convenient way to do that, and you also get to see a bunch of cool art way before other people!

You can also help Hell, Inc. by voting for it on Top Webcomics, which helps bring in new readers. Click on the banner below to vote daily!

Next Week: Doug is in control of his life, right? Right? Read it early on Patreon.

The Bill

I’m currently in the midst of a particularly notable streak of having no idea what day it is, so I’m glad some neurons fired to remind me that it was Monday and I needed to post the new comic.

Over on Patreon, my usual early reader post ended up being a much more detailed than usual look into the process of breaking a script into panels for the strip. If you’re interested in the process of the comic, chip in a buck and check that out.

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Shane Lees is Employee of the Week! He has a webcomic, Tales of Abuse, which you can check out at his website. You should also check out the Hell, Inc. Patreon, which is my predictable form of income. One of these days it will replace the need to freelance! Not a SOON day, but one day!

You can help out Hell, Inc. for free by clicking the banner below to vote on Top Webcomics, which you can do daily! It helps make the comic more visible to webcomic readers.

Next Week: We’re kicked out of the bar, now what? Read it early on Patreon!

 

Cartoon Brawling Dust Cloud

Despite it seeming like the obvious visual choice, I avoided drawing an actual cartoon brawling dust cloud. I don’t have a high-minded formal reason for it, it just looked squashed and weird once I accounted for the space the balloon would take up. It was easier to communicate the same idea with a tangle of bodies that used the space better. Thinking about those kinds of decisions that go into making a comic is always interesting to me, as there’s rarely a definitive correct answer, but rather many viable options depending on what the artist intends to communicate to the reader.

In other news, Calgary Expo and FCBD are in the rearview mirror, which gives me a little over a month until I next appear amongst the living. I’ll be back in Calgary, this time for the Horror Con, on June 17th and 18th! It’s themed around Killer Klowns from Outer Space this year, which kicks ass, because that movie rules.

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Barrie Deatcher is Employee of the Week, and will get to read my new Rent-A-Thug graphic novel as I draw it! Subscribers to my newsletter have already seen the first page, which I think is several orders of magnitude cooler than any previous Rent-A-Thug stuff. Patreon is my predictable source of income, and I would very much like it to grow to the point where I can get into a workflow of webcomic + graphic novel.

Remember Top Webcomics? That’s still a thing, so if you want to boost Hell, Inc. in the rankings and funnel some new readers in, click on the banner below. You can vote daily.

Next Week: Helen’s romantic past! Read it early on Patreon!

Chaotic Helen Noises

Speaking of chaos, I have returned from the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo. For my part, most of the chaos was the result of construction on the Stampede Grounds ensuring I rarely knew I where to go if I needed to go anywhere. Otherwise, things went pretty smoothly for me – a pleasant drive down, leisurely set-up, I remembered what all of my books were about to pitch them. And I went home with A LOT fewer books than I arrived with, which is always the goal. Thanks to everyone who bought books or prints, and hello to those of you discovering Hell, Inc. as a result of the con!

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Me, because I am too tired to look up whose turn it is. If you would like to help support Hell, Inc. as well as my other comic-making, and the all-important “continuing to feed and house myself,” consider chipping in $1 a month or more over on Patreon. Patrons get bonuses such as early access to Hell, Inc. strips, tons of art from my other projects, and even custom digital art!

You can also support Hell, Inc. for free by telling your friends about it, because that is infinitely better than any promotion I can do. Also voting on Top Webcomics by clicking the banner below is very helpful!

Next Week: The Ballad of Flailing Helen. It’s not a ballad, it’s more of screeching sound. Read it early on Patreon!

A More Interesting Topic

This strip was the end of my buffer, which activated about two weeks of furious drawing to rebuild said buffer. That was in the midst of the BURGERPunk Kickstarter wrapping up, although by the end of that I wasn’t having to do all that much. For whatever reason, RPG Kickstarters go much smoother than comic ones for me – they start off hot, and then I just kinda ride it along until there’s a slow patch in the middle, then I do some stuff that doesn’t actually help, and then things pick up and get hot at the end. Compared to comic Kickstarters, where I feel like I need to grind my ass off for a month straight, it’s downright relaxing.

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

“Game Time” Art Middleton is Employee of the Week! Follow him on Twitter or check out his Twitch streams, OR… do both of those things.  Also, head over to the Hell, Inc. Patreon, where you can support the continued existence of your favourite office demons and read new strips early (see above!). It turns out that humans, like demons, need money to live! Me, specifically.

In other news, social media’s slow collapse strengthens the case for Top Webcomics. The Old Internet becomes the New Internet! Click the banner below to vote daily.

Next Week: Sara learns that getting up is overrated. Read it early on Patreon!

Bridget, Bar Fight Champion of Hell

Bridget, Bar Fight Champion of Hell could also be the name of a Hell, Inc. video game where Bridget beats up demons. Maybe if Guinea Pig Press RPGs continue to do well, I’ll become wealthy enough to be the dictator of a small video game studio that adapts my comics into games. For some reason I recently started thinking about Hell, Inc. as an action platformer (like how everything got adapted as an action platformer in the NES/Super NES era). Doug bouncing around Hell popping people in the schnozz with his Popeye arms and collecting souls or something.

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Leonardo is Employee of the Week! They supported the creation of Hockeypocalypse: Slashers, and helped make that book ! You can do that with my next graphic novel, Rent-A-Thug, which I will be serializing on Patreon as well. Backers at the $5/month and up tiers will get a copy mailed to them when it’s finished!

In other news, BURGERPunk the RPG launches on TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 14th! Click the image below to sign up to be notified when the campaign launches! The main event is the BURGERPunk The RPG ‘zine, which is 32 pages of fast food action movie post-apocalypse chaos including the complete gameplay rules (using Powered by the Apocalypse) and 7 Flavour Profiles (character classes), available in print and digital formats.

Topics of Conversation

Conversations with my parents during the pandemic made me realize how much “things we have done recently” form the core of most casual conversation. When the answer to “what have you been up to” is “nothing, same as you,” it’s a lot harder to carry on a chat. That was indirectly how I arrived at writing this strip. I wasn’t consciously comparing the gang not having anything to talk about because they’ve all been together for a month straight to not having anything interesting to tell my parents because I’ve been at home for a month straight, but upon reflection it’s pretty clear how I ended up at this week’s joke.

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Sebastian is Employee of the Week, and you can, too! It’s how I have predictable money, which is both Cool and Good. If everyone who read the comic in a month chipped in $1, I’d be able to turn down most freelance work and focus on doing Hell, Inc. stuff and my own graphic novels! That would be pretty cool. Speaking of graphic novels, currently Rent-A-Thug: La Cosa Glasnostra is being reformatted as traditional comic pages and posted. Following that, the Rent-A-Thug graphic novel will be starting up (unless some publisher gives me a lot of money before that happens).

Also, the next RPG in my burgeoning empire is going to be launching in February, so sign up for my monthly-ish email newsletter to learn about BURGERPunk.

Diance Party

I don’t know what a table-dancing jam is in Hell, but Diane probably has some insight on that.

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Barrie Deatcher is Employee of the Week, and will get to read my new Rent-A-Thug graphic novel as I draw it! Subscribers to my newsletter have already seen the first page, which I think is several orders of magnitude cooler than any previous Rent-A-Thug stuff. Patreon is my predictable source of income, and I would very much like it to grow to the point where I can get into a workflow of webcomic + graphic novel.

Remember Top Webcomics? That’s still a thing, so if you want to boost Hell, Inc. in the rankings and funnel some new readers in, click on the banner below. You can vote daily.

Next Week: Ever look at a group of people and wonder “what would they even talk about?” Sara does. Read it early on Patreon!

Evolution of Dance?

Yes, I DID have to Google what the name of that dance video that was big on YouTube and got referenced on The Office was called. That was probably an unnecessary effort, but that is what we do here at Hell, Inc. It’s very clear that the comic, the corporation in the comic, and sometimes my studio area are all named the same thing.

I’m starting 2023 with a lot more concrete plans than normal, art-wise. The staggering artistic achievement that will be BURGERPUNK, the RPG, will be launching on Kickstarter in February. If you reacted to that with “that title rules,” then congratulations, you’re gonna like it a lot.

EMPLOYEE OF THE WEEK:

Cindy Gauthier is Employee of the Week, and you can read her comic on Webtoon! It’s called Posthumous, and is a comic about two friends (who are cool, weird cyborg-things) exploring space and how the things that are in space are often terrifying. Season 2 is underway!

Patreon! Go there. Do that. It is my most reliable source of income, and that is very helpful when living that freelance life. If everyone who read the comic last week chipped in $1/month, that would be enough to almost completely eliminate the need for freelancing. That would be rad!

Also check out the Newsletter, where I’ll be dropping some art from the Rent-A-Thug graphic novel for the first time!

Next Week: Diane lives a funk-based existence. Read it early on Patreon!