Sunday 8 November 2020

OUT NOW! Gamish: A Graphic History of Gaming

I've got a new book out! And you can buy it now in all good book shops or get a signed and sketched copy from my webshop. From the blurb:

Pac-Man. Mario. Minecraft. Doom.

Ever since he first booted up his brother’s dusty old Atari, comic artist Edward Ross has been hooked on video games. Years later, he began to wonder: what makes games so special? Why do we play? And how do games shape the world we live in? This lovingly illustrated book takes us through the history of video games, from the pioneering prototypes of the 1950s to the modern era of blockbuster hits and ingenious indie gems.

Exploring the people and politics behind one of the world’s most exciting art-forms, Gamish is a love letter to something that has always been more than just a game.

For more info and a some preview imagery, visit the book's website.

Monday 22 April 2019

Mysteries of the Deep

My latest science comic is out now. Mysteries of the Deep takes readers onboard the JOIDES Resolution, a scientific ocean drilling ship that uses core samples from the bottom of the ocean to explore everything from ancient climate change to tectonic activity in the Sea of Japan.

The comic is an exciting departure for my science work. Following years of comics set in the microbial world, this comic takes in the dramatic settings of both the Eocene Epoch and the floating laboratories of the JOIDES Resolution. It was a real joy to work on - with a mix of childhood-dream-come-true prehistoric imagery and fascinating, important science to explore.

The comic was accompanied by an exhibition which I designed, illustrated and co-wrote with my scientific collaborator Tom Dunkley Jones from Birmingham University.

The exhibition is running at Lapworth Museum, Birmingham from 11th March - 17th June 2019. You can download the comic and the exhibition panels for free here.

Friday 21 December 2018

Looking Back at 2018

It's my last few hours at work before taking a break over Christmas and New Year and I thought it would be a good time to reflect on the last 12 months. If I'm honest I'm not where I expected to be when I started the year.


Work on Gamish has progressed well but at a rate much slower than I ever expected. My self-imposed writing deadline came and went some time back in March and I was still miles off.

It wasn't until August that writing was finally complete, and even then it was a lie, with a bunch of rewrites to do to fix things that had been bothering me for months.

Still, it was a major milestone, and from there I got to work storyboarding the comic, working out thumbnail versions of each of the book's 164 pages. It was an exciting period of work, a nice change from the pace of writing and a chance to see how the decisions I'd made during the scripting process were paying off nicely now that the visuals were coming together.

By the start of November I was finally able to move on to pencilling the book. Again it's slow, but as of the end of the year I've drawn most of the first two chapters. There's still about three quarters of the book to go, but it's moving at a pace now that feels exciting. I'm really looking forward to sharing more over the coming months.

Elsewhere, things have been going well. There are some exciting science comic projects in the works, and I've already started to think ahead about the next couple of graphic novels I want to work on.

In January I was able to fulfil a longtime dream of mine and visit Angoulême in France with my publisher Éditions çà et là. It was an amazing time, intimidating and inspiring in equal measure to see the wealth of comics that the rest of Europe has to offer.

In September I self-published a comic for the first time in five years. B-Sides & Shorts is a collection of shorts including some recent poetry comics I've created in collaboration with poet Russell Jones.

I also created two short video games, which you can play here.

And throughout the year I've continued to visit schools across Scotland to give talks and workshops to young folk. It's always a nice change of pace, and very rewarding to see young illustrators working on their own comics.

So, onto 2019.

Wednesday 15 August 2018

Apples for Grandma

I've been working on a new poetry comic, based on a poem by Russell Jones. It's been a nice exercise, a little bookend between finishing writing on Gamish: A Graphic History of Gaming, and finishing the illustration of it.

This wee project gives me a chance to warm up for something bigger, getting me ready for what's going to be a year's worth of drawing at least.

An old woman leans forward under a blanket. Text reads: These apples are for grandma. Big eyes, long nose, sharp teeth.

I loved working on this poem. It's dark and evocative, but leaves loads of space for me to bring something new to the visuals. It's a subversive retelling, or countertelling maybe, of Little Red Riding hood. Although, it's also not. It's something else. And it's great.

This short comic will be part of an anthology of my short story comics from the last few years, making its debut at Thought Bubble Comic Arts Festival in Leeds.

Wednesday 10 May 2017

Toxoplasmosis: Unlocking the Secrets of a Mysterious Parasite

Earlier this year, I had the great pleasure of working with Dr Jamie Hall and Wellcome Centre for Molecular Parasitology on another comic about the parasites the centre studies.

Over the last few years we've been working on a series of short comics about their work. The first two, Malaria: The Battle Against a Microscopic Killer and Sleeping Sickness: The Fight Against a Nightmarish Disease covered two truly devastating diseases.

The latest entry focuses on a far more prevalent, but significantly less deadly disease: Toxoplasmosis. Thought to have infected up to a third of humans worldwide, Toxoplasmosis is thankfully fairly benign under normal circumstances. It's a hugely interesting disease, capable of altering the behaviour of the animals it infects.

You can read Toxoplasmosis: Unlocking the Secrets of a Mysterious Parasite in full here.

Wednesday 7 September 2016

Evil Dead - Drawing Timelapse

The original Evil dead is one of the most OTT, gloopy and wild horror movies ever made. It was great fun getting to feature it in Filmish: A Graphic Journey Through Film and I thought it would be nice to revisit one of the drawings I did based on the film to test out some new Uniball pens I got.

The Uniball Air I used for the outline is one of the better felt style pens I've used. Its rubber tip gives good line variation and a steady flow - a nice, reliable pen that suits my style. It's a fun one to draw with when I'm not in the mood to make a mess with dip pens.

Friday 19 August 2016

Filmish at Edinburgh International Book Festival

On Saturday I was onstage at the Edinburgh International Book Festival for a reading and chat about my graphic novel Filmish. Joe Gordon from Forbidden Planet Blog was my interviewer, and the hall was pretty full, which was really nice to see.

Photo © Jer White
For the first time ever, I gave a reading of my work - quite an unlikely thing to do as a comic artist, given the visual nature of the medium, but it worked. Reading from the chapter on 'Sets and Architecture', a powerpoint of panels from the chapter offered a necessary visual element. Edinburgh itself decided to add to the mix, with fireworks adding an explosive backdrop to my discussion.

Joe and I spent the rest of the time speaking about where the idea for Filmish came from and how comics offer an interesting and at times challenging way to look at the cinema. Audience questions were very insightful, and I was asked to give my thoughts on both motion comics and VR - two very different media that are similar in their resistance to classification, and fascinating in their hybridity.

Photo © Joe Gordon via Flickr
The signing afterwards was great fun and I got to meet some really interesting people who had turned out for the talk. Sketching and signing takes time so hopefully no one was too bored by the wait!

A photo posted by Edward Ross (@filmishcomic) on