Monday, January 19, 2015

The BIGGEST News...and I'm just getting started!

Just three weeks young and already 2015 has been a breakout year.  


Hours into its first day, saw the release of my first strip in the Columbus Alive’s Sketch in the City series, a highlight for local cartoonists and creators operating in central Ohio (Thanks to Ken Eppstein of Nix Comics for curating!!).  My first solo sequential work in some time, Any Which Way But Snewz, allowed me to flex some creative muscles I wasn’t sure I had anymore.  But finishing the work -- and two weeks ahead of schedule at that -- has boosted my confidence tenfold, with the promise of seeing more work from my mind and hands in the very near future.  

I followed that up with a return to the classroom.  A guest instructor at Marburn Academy, my charge was in taking students through the creative process of creating a page of “original” content.  Using fan-fiction as the source, over two weeks, we talked about narrative structure, broke down storytelling tactics and illustration, with a 100% completion of the project from each participant, including staff!  A showcase is scheduled with Comic Town, one of my favorite local comic shops (and home of Black, White and Read All Over!) at the end of the month.

And then there’s “8 Bit Guy No More.”  With the convention season already started, I’m putting my words to the test, shining the spotlight on the established line of comic book titles through my imprint, Vantage:Inhouse Productions, instead of the pixelized artwork I’ve become known for.  My first appearance of the year, Wizard World New Orleans, was an PHENOMENAL -- proving more than anything that now is the right time for me to make this transition, embracing its challenges with open arms!

With all this, new books and projects currently in production, I can truly say 2015 is shaping up to be something special for me and V:IP.  But with what I’m about to announce, you could easily say I was just getting started...

WIZARD WORLD COMIC CON IS PARTNERING WITH VANTAGE:INHOUSE PRODUCTIONS TO DISTRIBUTE U CRE-8 COMICS!!     


In a deal brokered over the holidays, Wizard World will feature a custom piece of my U Cre-8 Comics line, through their Kids Day events.  U Cre-8 Comics, a series of projects and programs designed to bridge comics with classroom fundamentals, has been a fan-favorite panel of the Wizard World circuit since 2013.  With this partnership, thousands of young creators will be given a chance to create their own comic book characters; inspiring them to not only consider being comic readers, but creators as well!  

Over the remainder of the 2015 convention season, attendees, ages 10 and under, will receive a complimentary U Cre-8 Comics Character Crafter postcard when they check in (while supplies last).  Through the Character Crafter postcard, an abridged version of the workbook of the same name, they’ll be able to create their own, custom comic book character. Designing everything from power sets and costumes, we’re giving a new generation of creators some initial tools to go from being comic book fans to creators in their own right.

The Cre-8-ivity begins this weekend, January 23-25, at Wizard World Portland (Oregon Convention Center)!  Remember, children 10 and under are FREE when accompanied by a paying adult (limit two per admission).  Learn more about U Cre-8 Comics at www.ucre8comics.com and keep following Vantage:Inhouse Productions (www.vantageinhouse.blogspot.com) for our growing line of comics and other projects!

The UnConventional BIG Picture:

Vantage:Inhouse Productions is admittedly small-press, but far from small thinking.  I’ve aimed to affect the comic book industry in a meaningful way, despite my apparent lack of size, finance or notoriety.  And its working!  You too can find a way to make an impact on this medium we love -- you just have to be diligent and dedicated to your own goals.  It’s YOUR responsibility to make your own way.  Along the way, you may find some assists from like-minded allies -- but consider that an added bonus, not a crutch to rely on.  You can do it.  Believe me.

Corporate comic conventions are NOT your enemy.  Shallow thinking and self-imposed limitations are.  If you feel the focus isn’t on the medium as it should be or that there isn’t enough effort to promote it, do what YOU can to shine that spotlight.  No more excuses or finger wagging.  Trust and believe that they DO love comics just as much as we do, but they’re a business and they have their own needs to fulfill.  Try adjusting your perspective and see what you can do for THEM, instead of looking at what they owe you...because all they owe is getting people in the door.  And they tend to do that pretty well and by the tens of thousands.

I can’t stress this enough -- BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE.  It’s your job!!!  You can’t just wait for the change to come; you can’t ask anyone else to step up where you won’t.  We have the immense power of creativity in our hands and we all know what comes with great power...

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Sketch in the City Week 2!!!

Sorry I'm a little late on this, but with Week THREE of my Sketch in the City run coming out today, I figured I better plug part two -- JUST IN CASE you missed it!!!  My confidence as a creator has been boosted so high doing this project that I'm PROMISING to complete a few solo works by years end!

So, make sure you go grab a copy of Columbus Alive TODAY, and catch up on last week's piece at the jump!

Any Which Way But Snewz #2
By Victor Dandridge
Read it: HERE

BW&R - SEASON 2, ep 2 "I'd Marry This Comic Book"

Who had all the fun in a comic shop this week -- no doubt, it was Ryan and I, getting our weekly fix for Black, White & READ All Over!  There were some PHENOMENAL books hitting the rack this week -- some definite contenders for best of the year (and it's just WEEK TWO!).  If you haven't picked up your pull list yet, watch this vid (make sure you subscribe) and get over to your local comic shop before they're all SOLD OUT!!!!

ON THE RACK:
Jupiter's Legacy #5 (Image) - Mark Millar (w) and Frank Quitely (a)
S.H.I.E.L.D #2 (Marvel) - Mark Waid (w) and Humberto Ramos (a)
Spider-verse #2 (Marvel) - Dan Slott/ Kathryn Immonen/ Jed McKay (w) and Mark Brooks/ David Lafuente/ 
Sheldon Vella (a)
Star Wars #1 (Marvel) - Jason Aaron (w) and John Cassidy (a)

HONORABLE MENTIONS: 
Green Lantern Corps #38 (DC Comics) - Van Jensen (w) and Bernard Chang/ Mirko Colak (a) 
Earth 2: World's End #15 (DC Comics) - Daniel H. Wilson/ Marguerite Bennet/ Mike Johnson (w)
Eduardo Pansica/ Jorge Jimenez/ Robson Rocha/ Tyler Kirkham/ Eddy Barrows/ Paul Neary/ Waldoen Wong/
Guillermo Ortego/ Eber Ferreira (a)
The Walking Dead #136 (Image) - Robert (Bobby K) Kirkman (w) and Charlie Adlard (a)

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Columbus Alive presents: Sketch in the City!

2015 is already off to an amazing start and the wonderful editorial staff at the Columbus Alive has played a HUGE part in that!  Last year, they started a showcase for local comic creators called Sketch in the City -- a tremendous effort to introduce their readers (which ranges around 75,000 readers in print and digital) to the enormous (and growing) community of comic creators living in central Ohio. 

Launching with the work of Max Ink, whose beautifully poignant series, BLINK, is as much a hallmark of Cols as The Buckeyes or Wendy's, the series would feature a six-week run, with a story centered around living here. 

With an invite from project curator and editor, Ken Eppstein of Nix Comics, I've been tapped to do my own tribute to my hometown in a 5wk short story that mixes Nite Owl Theater with the cartoonish antics of Adventure Time.  The first installment launched New Year's Day and went live online this past Tuesday.  So have no fear -- if you can't grab a copy, you can still read along each week!

Any Which Way But Snewz #1
By Victor Dandridge
Read Online: HERE

Black, White and Read All Over - Season 2 Ep 1 "Get to the Dr...!"



It's the official #kickstart for SEASON TWO of Black, White and Read!  The geeky magic continues with episode #45 (wow, already?!?), where Ryan and I read some pretty amazing titles this week -- before he has rush out and get a suspicious rash looked at (ewwww)!

On the rack:
Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #1 (Marvel) - Ryan North (w) and Erica Henderson (a)
Men of Wrath #4 (Marvel Icon) - Jason Aaron (w) Ron Garney (a)
Ant-Man #1 (Marvel) - Nick Spencer (w) Ramon Rosanas (a)

Honorable mentions:
Fade Out #4 (Image) - Ed Brubaker (w) Sean Phillips (a)
Green Lantern #38 (DC) - Robert Venditti (w) and Admira Vijaya (a)

Did we hit?  Did we miss?  Fire up the comments section on our YouTube and make sure you're subscribing! 

And YOU can get in on the action by suggesting books to read every #MONDAY!  Just tweet your choices to @vantageinhouse and @irishry39 with #BWR!

Monday, January 5, 2015

LOOK FOR ME!!! Wizard World NOLA

It's convention season again!!!



After taking December off to enjoy the holidays, I'm eager to get back to work, hitting the con circuit!  And first for 2015 is Wizard World New Orleans!!!  

This is our second time to the Big Easy and I can't think of a better place for us to really bear down on our "From Bits to Books" campaign!  And to make sure things get the proper start, we're releasing a WW NOLA #EXCLUSIVEVariant cover for The Samaritan #1!  We've only got a limited supply of these, so don't miss out -- come see me at Table C41, this weekend!!!


BUT WAIT -- THERE'S MORE!!!!!

Friday night, after show -- I'm taking on the hosting duties for the WW NOLA Drink and Draw!!  If you're 21+ and would like to win cold-hard cash for having the best drawing or short story, you need to join me from 8:30-10:30pm!  Check the Wizard World programming list for updates on the location -- I'll see you THERE!!!!

Sunday, January 4, 2015

(re)Introducing...Origins Unknown vol 1: WHO!

Some times, a fresh coat of paint can breathe new life.


Last year I declared "8-Bit Guy No More!"  And we're already had at work, not only producing NEW comic characters and stories, but also refinishing some of our existing titles to accommodate a "New to You" campaign that will be launching in February!

The original cover design
!
Being one of the earliest projects  gestating in my mind since the 2000's, Origins Unknown has been a title with a vast amount of potential.  Initially intended as more of an exercise, playing around with the trope of the cliffhanger through the short-story format, the stories were supposed to just stand alone, unfinished for all time.  But as the project was published, more and more readers asked IF there was any continuance to the stories and that's where the first seeds were planted that not only COULD BE more, there SHOULD be. 

My first addendum was to create a second series of shorts, each one also an homage to an existing character from mainstream comics.  Once that new run was completed, we would host a fan vote, allowing for only the TWO most popular of the six stories to continue.  The second wave is all laid out and just about ready for art duties, but as the work on them continued, more and more places where the Origins Unknown characters could interact with other V:IP titles kept appearing.  Before long, the threads that other titles were running with could EASILY be linked back to those six stories and that's when I realized, the answer had been staring me in the face the entire time.

 Origins Unknown has secretly been a foundation of my entire, UNIFIED universe.

But to give it the attention it deserves, a facelift was SORELY needed, not just visually, but conceptually as well!  Origins Unknown will serve as the Secret Origins (DC Comics) series to the V:IP Universe.  But to keep up the integrity of our OTHER cache of titles, we only want it to answer the questions that WE want you asking -- namely, who, what, where, when and why.

So it is with GREAT pleasure, that I (re)Introduce Origins Unknown Vol 1: Who.  


New and improved!  Still featuring Somewhere I Belong, Point of Authority and Breaking the Habit!



Unfortunately, for the foreseeable future, my volume one cohort, Jacob Newell won't be returning to the project -- BUT, he's got some creator-owned projects he's been HARD at work on, so stay on the look out for them!  And keep tuning in here, as we continue with our "From Bits to Books" campaign for 2015!!!