In 2008 I wrote an article for MacFormat magazine about artists who have started painting on the iPad and iPhone using apps like Brushes and SketchBook Pro. I met some fascinating folk like Corliss Blakely, Jonathan Garuel and Susan Murtaugh who were creating amazing pieces of artwork with just an iPad or iPhone. I also interviewed comic artist Dean Trippe (www.deantrippe.com) but unfortunately his answers didn’t make to me in time to make the article (due to them getting waylaid in spam filters and the cyber-netherworlds!), so I thought this might be a great chance to finally have his words see the light of day as he has some really interesting stuff to say about creating artwork on his iPhone and iPad.

When it comes to the best digital comics app on the iPad, there really is only one top dog – ComiXology’s Comics. The iTunes of comics apps, ComiXology are the pioneers of digital comics on the iPhone and iPad and the powerhouse behind Marvel, DC and Images own apps. As I explored the world of comics on the iPad, it got me wondering just how the titles are published and how would I go about getting my work published if I were an indie comics publisher. And who better to ask than the folk at ComiXology themselves. So if you’ve ever wondered what the secret is, here’s the answers, courtesy of ComiXology’s David Steinberger their founder and CEO !

When it came to designing the logo for this site, as a designer by trade I knew it had to be a good one! So rather than just use a slightly ropey freeware comics font, or worse Brushstroke or Comics San, I decided to invest in a couple of fonts from the brilliant Comic Book Fonts website run by Comicraft’s Richard Starkings. It was while looking around on his site, that I realised that Richard and the guys at Comicraft are way more than just comic book letterers. They are publishers, artists and digital pioneers, so who better than to ask about their opinion on the wonderful world of digital comics.

When you do a search on iTunes for ‘comics’ you get the familiar array of apps from the big publishers like Marvel, DC, Image and ComiXology. But hidden in among these monster apps is a little icon with a angry pygmy on it called PG Comics. If you’re an iOS gamer you might recognise the name Pocket God as the hit iPhone game, but in this incarnation it’s a self published comic from the guys at Ape Entertainment. It’s a real gem written by the very talented Jason M Burns with awesome art from Uruguayan artist Rolando Mallada. I wanted to find out more about how this little title could outsell the big boys, so I got in touch with Ape’s publisher Dave Hedgecock and asked him what it’s like to carve your own niche in the brave new world of digital publishing!

One of the real success stories of comics on the iPad is IDW Publishing. Not only do they have a strong presence on ComiXology but they also have a series of their own apps  based on hit series like Transformers, True Blood and Dr Who. With smaller independents flourishing in this new market place, I got the chance to ask IDW’ Publishing’s Jeff Webber, their director of e-publishing, about some of the success stories at IDW and just how he sees the future for smaller comics publishers like IDW.

While researching this article I tried to get in touch with all my favourite artists and writers in the faint hope that they might be able to spare some time from their busy schedules to answer my questions. After sending out emails to everyone of note in my comics collection, one of the first people to get back in touch with me was the fantastic Kurt Busiek of Astro City and Marvels fame. Growing up I was a massive fan of Kurt’s work on Marvels and I was so excited to hear what he had to say, and here it is…

While investigating the world of iPad comics apps I came across this little gem in the ComiXology Comics app. As well as distributing the adventures of the world’s top super heroes, ComiXology have also published their own titles, in particular the Box 13 series by writer David Gallaher and artist Steve Ellis. Both David and Steve were really helpful in my research and below is the full transcript of my interview with them which never quite made it into the article as planned.