Best of the Year 2011 – Sean Azzopardi
Today’s guest Best of the Year post comes from a long-time good chum of the blog – a writer, artist and keen supporter of the British small press comics scene, as well as an occassional contributor to this very blog (in fact he kindly penned a report on the Brit comics contingent’s trip to the Malta Comic Con earlier this week, you can read it here) the one and only Sean Azzopardi:
FPI: Can you pick three comics/webcomics/graphic novels which you especially enjoyed over the last twelve months and tell us why you singled them out?
Sean: The Accidental Salad – Joe Decie. Wonderful line and wash drawing. Warm story telling that has a unique voice.
(a scene from The Accidental Salad by and (c) Joe Decie, published by Blank Slate Books’ Chalk Marks imprint)
The Lengths – Howard Hardiman. An interesting story about a scene that is different to the comic norm. Also a very free and raw way of approaching the material. Atmospheric.
(a scene from issue 3 of The Lengths by Howard Hardiman)
Cassanova – Fraction and Ba. I love this comic and so far this current run continues to melt my mind. More !
(fashionable superspy fun in Casanova by Fraction and Ba)
FPI: Can you pick three books which you especially enjoyed over the last twelve months and tell us why you singled them out?
Sean: Again I failed to read new material!
Books of blood – Clive Barker was a welcome re-visit. Surprised at how political the sub text is, guess it’s a product of writing during the Thatcher years, now applies to the current political dogma.
Reasons to be Cheerful – The life and works of Barney Bubbles. – Inspiring work and biography about an amazing and influential designer.
FPI: Can you pick three TV shows and/or movies which you especially enjoyed over the last twelve months and tell us why you singled them out?
Sean: The Killing was a gripping show that really engaged over it’s extensive run of episodes.
Black Swan – a simply wonderfully made film. MAD and CRAZY images.
FPI: How did 2011 go for you as a creator? Are you happy with the way you got your work out this year?
Sean: 2011 went very well, probably my best year. I received my first page payment (Phonogram) and was finally published (Necessary Monsters), so those comic ‘firsts’ are out the way. It was also a productive year; the Ed trade was released, three new mini comics, work in Paper Science, and illustrations in various publications.
(a light-hearted moment of jolly fun in Necessary Monsters by and (c) Sean Azzopardi and Daniel Merlin Goodbrey)
I curated two exhibitions and attended far too many conventions. Highlights were Angouleme, TCAF and Malta (see here for Sean’s guest post reporting on the Malta comic con, his report on the Flashback exhibition he curated and the We Are Words + Pictures show he organised – Joe).
A new development was taking on a studio space. So yes a really busy and fulfilling year.
FPI: What can we look forward to from you in 2012?
Sean: I’m not sure. I have decided to take a year out, maybe longer. Apart from away trips, I will not be exhibiting at conventions next year. I have been doing so for ten years and it is time for a break. The studio is going to be my creative home for next year. I want to explore some new ideas inspired by the wonderful different work that I‘ve seen recently.
FPI: Anyone you think is a name we should be watching out for next year?
Sean: I think it would be interesting to see Sarah Gordon working with comics scripts. She is a good colourist and fine illustrator, so it would be exciting to see these skills combined in a comic.