The great thing about digital comics is that there isn’t one way to publish your story. Whether you’re distributing through a major company and keeping to a strict monthly schedule or you’re self-publishing online and releasing it whenever you feel is right, there’s no hard and fast rule about how best to release your work to the public.One prime example of doing things differently is the brilliant Cow Boy from Chris Eliopoulos and Nate Cosby. We spoke to Chris back in August when Cow Boy was still in it’s infancy and so it’s great to see it finally appearing online, and it really has been worth the wait. Chris and Nate have taken the bold step of offering pages from Cow Boy free on their site cowboycomic.net while also offering dedicated readers the option to pre-order a hard cover print edition which will be published by Archaia Press.

The brilliant Jill Thompson is a woman of many talents. Not only is she the writer and artist of the fantastically successful Scary Godmother and Beasts of Burden series from Dark Horse; she’s also the designer of ring outfits and T-shirts for WWE superstars like current WWE World Champion Daniel Bryan; And she’s the creator of her own iPad app JilliJill – which distributes her weird and wonderful comic stories to a new generation of tablet savvy fans. Curious how she manages to find time in the day, we caught up with Jill and asked her just what the future holds for comic creators like herself in this new digital world…

The guys overs at IDW Publishing have created a great niche for themselves in the digital comics world thanks to their awesome series of apps and titles featuring big names from G.I. Joe to True Blood. However it is with Transformers that they have had their most success, so much so that this week sees the launch of this digital exclusive series, Transformers Autocracy.

With gorgeous art from fan favourite artist Livio Ramondelli and a story by Warcraft writer Chris Metzen alongside seasoned Transformer author Flint Dillie, it focuses on the early days of Optimus Prime (here referred to as Orion Pax) on Cybertron, before the war. Working alongside familiar names like Bumblebee, Ironhide and Hound, as a kind of Cybertron Police Force, the story looks set to reveal how Prime came to be the great leader we all know and love – there is even the promise of appearances from Megatron and other Decepticons, but as allies rather than foes! Essentially, it’s a bit like X-Men First Class but with Autobots instead of mutants!

At a mere 8 pages, there isn’t much to get your teeth into, but it certainly whets your appetite for more, and with only two weeks until the next instalment (and a bargain price of 69p an issue) you won’t have long to wait. Plans are to have the story line run through into June and also to tie in with the continuity of new titles More Than Meets The Eye and Robots in Disguise so there should be enough to keep both hardened Autobot-fans and nostalgic geeks like myself happy well into the summer.

Transformers Autocracy is published by IDW Publishing and can be downloaded from either their own app or via ComiXology’s Comics


Is there a better team in comics today than Sean Philips and Ed Brubaker? Whether it’s the pot-boiled noir of Criminal or the post-modern super-villain antics of Incognito, they are truly masters of their craft. Now it’s time for them to turn their attention to the supernatural horror genre with brand new title Fatale. It features the traditional tight and complex Brubaker storyline blending time-travel, horror, whodunnit and classic noir. Flipping from the 1930s to the present day with seamless, mind-bending brilliance the story would be nothing without Philips stylish visuals. Tweaking his trademark stark, monochromatic style to a more pulpy 30s style it features much more of a dynamic feel than the tight close-ups of Criminal, however it is subtle touches of former Hellboy and BPRD colourist Dave Stewart that really helps give Fatale that gothic feel.

As with all Brubaker/Philips story it is difficult to get your head around this latest world in just 32 pages. Not because it is complex and unwieldy, but because the themes and subjects involved are so expertly weaved into the story. By the time you reach the final page you are only just getting started and are left wanting to read the next instalment as soon as you can. Fatale is the kind of book that will reward repeat reading as you pick up more and more with each reading as the story progresses from issue to issues, so make sure you get on the Fatale band wagon now as this will be on everyone’s ‘Best of 2012’ list by the end of the year and will be selling out in print before you know it.

Fatale #1 is published by Image Comics and is available on Comics or the Image Comics app for $3.50

Graphicly iconIn the world of digital comics you could be forgiven for assuming that there are the big two (ComiXology and iVerse) and that’s it. But shame on you for being so narrow-minded. Just as in the print world, there are some amazing apps outside the remit of the big two and one of my current favourites is the very cool Graphic.ly. Mixing a comics reader with an in built social network, it’s the closest thing you can get to the hanging out at the comic store and shooting the sh*t. It’s packed with awesome titles from a whole host of publishers including Marvel, Image and Boom! Studios and so features great titles such as Walking Dead, Savage Dragon and Mark Waid’s Irredeemable, many of which are available the same day as in print. I decided to get in touch with founders Micah Baldwin and Ron Richards and ask just how Graphic.ly came about and how they hope to compete with the big boys.

What’s the best way to take the story of two Victorian computer pioneers and turn it into an exciting iPad app? How about re-imagining their story as a comic book adventure and turn them into Victorian crime-fighters solving mysteries on behalf of the Queen? Well that’s what brilliant Canadian artist and writer Sydney Padua did and thanks to the guys at Agant it’s now a fantastic interactive app. Released to commemorate Ada Lovelace Day on October 7th (a day started to celebrate the role of women in technology) this brilliant app is a slice of steam punk style Victoriana, a bit like the League of Extraordinary Gentleman meets Dempsey and Makepeace, but also features interactive historical annotations along the way so you can really get a feeling of just how intricate and accurate the story-telling is. To find out more about this fantastic new crime-fighting duo and their historically accurate adventures, I got in touch with app developer Dave Addey and asked him where the inspiration for this great new app came from…

Raptor Splash Page by Blair D SheddHere at Pipedream Comics we’re big fans of writers and artists who embrace the world of self-publishing.. One of our favourites at the moment is Blair D Shedd, aka @OneGemini, creator of his own Kickstarter funded series The Raptor (which should see the light of day sometime in November) as well as artist on Dr Who for the folks over at IDW. Keen to find out more about self-publishing The Raptor and drawing timelords we got in touch. 

You wouldn’t naturally link fashion and digital comics, but petit model Isobella Jade has linked these two disparate worlds to create the awesome Model Life, now available on iVerse’s Comics + app. Isobella took the trials and tribulations of her life as a model who is less than 5’4″ and turned them into a series of fantastic autobiographical books and graphic novels which she wrote in an Apple Store in New York and then published online her herself. Inspired by this can-do attitude I decided to ask her just what brings a petit model into the traditionally macho world of digital comics!

When it comes to producing artwork on the iPad it’s great to see what creative people come up with using apps like Brushes, ArtRage and SketchBook Pro. What’s even better though is to see what professional comic artists can produce with them. I recently came across the iPad sketches of Irredeemable artist Peter Krause and so got him touch with him to find out just what he thinks about drawing on the iPad and whether it will ever replace his pencils and pens.

There are very few CEO’s of a multi-national corporation who can make front page news across the globe when they resign. However Apple’s Steve Jobs did just that in August when he handed in his notice from the computing giant he co-founded back in 1976. The man who bought Apple back from the brink in the early 90s and introduced the world to the iMac, iPod, iPhone and iPad has led an enigmatic life and what better way to tell that story than in comic book form? We’ve previewed the Steve Jobs comic from Blue Water Productions this site back in July, but with the book released this week, I interviewed writer CW Cooke and artist Chris Schmidt about the particular difficulties that arose in putting together a biography on the world’s most famous CEO.