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Comics A.M. | Thousands turned away from Calgary comic expo

Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo

Conventions | Thousands of fans were locked out of the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo after the local fire marshal declared that the building had reached capacity. The big draw was not actually comics but a reunion of the cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation. [Calgary Herald]

Awards | The Thrill Electric, an online comic created by Leah Moore and John Reppion, Emma Vieceli, Windflower Studio and LittleLoud for the U.K.’s Channel 4, has been nominated for best website in the 2012 Broadcast Digital Awards. [Broadcast]

Creators | Jay Faerber talks about his early ambitions, his current comic Near Death, and what is so special about being published by Image: “The thing about Image is you have absolute creative freedom. Once Near Death was approved, I just wrote it. There were no notes from Eric or anyone else at Image telling me what they think I should do, which is awesome. But it can also be a burden, because if a book sucks, I can’t say, ‘Well, if I had been able to do it my way…’ – because I did do it my way. So working at Image has made me become my own editor. The buck stops here, you know?” [Broken Frontier]

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Blank Slate will collect Nick Abadzis’ long-lost Hugo Tate strips

Abadzis' rough cover concept for the "Hugo Tate" Colection

Although cartoonist Nick Abadzis might be known to most American audiences solely for his graphic novel Laika, the Swedish-born artist has been busy making comics since the mid-80s. And now, enterprising UK art-house publisher Blank Slate is bringing back Abadzis’ first major comics work, which made him a name to his European fans.  Hugo Tate is the story of a man living his life and soaking up the eccentricities that normal people like you and I exhibit. Although the characters are little more than stick-figure men, Abadzis gave them a lushly drawn world and some true-to-life character moments that couldn’t be done anywhere except in comics.

“Over the years, I have been asked for this collection, many, many times,” Abadzis said in a message posted on Forbidden Planet’s blog. “It’s taken a long time to get together, for which I apologise to all those patient readers and fans of Deadline out there. I’ve been working on it, on and off, for years, digitizing and restoring the artwork. (Note to self: never use zip-a-tone again. It shrinks with age.) But this is to let the faithful out there know that the Hugo Tate book really is on its way. It’s going to be published by Blank Slate, an imprint whose output I’ve been really enjoying in the past couple of years. ”

Originally published from 1988 to 1994 inside Deadline magazine as a companion series to Tank Girl, the sole previous collection — a partial collection in 1993 called Hugo Tate: O, America – has been out of print for over a decade.Abadzis’ has posted some of his favorite strips on his blog, including the excellent “Bread & Liver” strip which you should definitely read.

Although Deadline is most fondly remembered for introducing the word to Jamie Hewlett & Alan Martin’s Tank Girl, works like Hugo Tate have largely fallen between the cracks and are just now seeing the light of day. Next on my wish list is Philip Bond’s Wired World.

Cartoonist Nick Abadzis tells a foodie tale set in Brookyln

Phenomenal cartoonist Nick Abadzis (Laika) has turned up in a surprising new place: Gourmet Live magazine, a digital magazine available via Condé Nast as an iPhone app.

Titled Chefs of America, the cartoonist says “fittingly, it’s about food.. but of course, it’s not only about food. Food is all about people, after all…”

Abadzis plans to have a new episode in each week’s issue of the Gourmet Live app — which is free,  so there’s no time like the present to check out new work by this amazing artist.

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