What’s the plan, Batman?

When is the next Kickstarter going to take place? That’s the question I get asked the most and its the one I want to answer the most. I’m so excited to get CATAPULTED wrapped up and completed. The truth is I had envisioned already starting the final CATAPULTED Kickstarter by now. However, one of the things I wanted to do differently with this Kickstarter was to have all of the rewards completed, specifically the main comic, before launching the campaign. This would mean that once the campaign was funded I would be able to pull all the triggers and minimise the time needed to get rewards into the hands of backers.

The reality is I need more time to complete the comic at a high quality. Last time, I booked a table at a local comic con so that I would be compelled to complete everything on time. Whilst that was a great motivator, it definitely was a tight deadline to get everything finished before the con and this time I want quality to scream from the project. For that first issue, “finished was better than perfect”. The benefits of having some completed work behind my name have been numerous. But I don’t want fans and potential backers to feel like they will be getting more of the same. I want there to be an obvious improvement in the comic and rewards offered. And as with all great things, this means it will take a little more time.

However, in the mean time I wanted to build anticipation of the campaign by sharing a preview of the rewards I’m planning.

Rewards

I’m pretty much sharing details for all rewards, except for one interesting “feature” that pertains to the comic itself. I want to keep that a surprise until the start of the Kickstarter campaign.

Digital Rewards

The first few tiers will be completely digital. I’ve tried to think about what would make a good digital package besides just having a PDF/CBR version of the comic. Brainstorming has led me to ideas of paper/pepakura toys of characters from CATAPULTED that can be printed out and made by backers. I can just imagine seeing lots of fan made photos of the paper toys and some of the template examples out there are pretty creative. High-res poster/pin-up art and maybe some desktop wallpapers are another option. I’ve considered doing another podcast style creators commentary which would be available at the lower tiers rather than the higher tiers. I really enjoyed making the commentary last time (although I’m not sure if anyone else did as it was pretty long) and I’ve toyed with the idea of doing some kind of comic creation podcast as I think there are lots of interesting topics to explore.

Now the interesting “feature” that I mentioned earlier will be available for anyone that has a copy of the comic, whether digital or physical.

I’ll say no more… for now.

Physical Rewards

Digital rewards are great but my recommendation for enjoying the comic is a physical copy of the book. It really is the best way to enjoy a comic and part of that reason is in the format of comics.

The process of page turning and seeing double page spreads really lends itself to having the book in front of you. So much effort and planning go into the layout of the pages which is part of how stories are told through comics.

This is why the entire story of CATAPULTED will be collated into a trade paperback edition. It will include the first issue and the remaining issues of the story, finalising the mini series with a definitive end.
The art style of these remaining issues will be different from the first issue (I’m hoping that you agree the art will have drastically improved). Although this means that artistically the book will not be consistent, it will be an indicator of my personal journey of improvement as a creator. If the Kickstarter really took off and we exceeded the target enough to reach some stretch goals, then maybe I would consider redrawing the first issue so that the style was consistent.

The book is going the be the pinnacle of the Kickstarter and I’m hoping the story will be exciting and stimulating to previous backers and new readers alike.

Comic merchandise is common in Kickstarters but I want rewards to be valuable not just an add-on to the project. With some clever designs and good artwork, I am hoping to produce great vinyl stickers (great for sketchbooks and backs of laptops etc.), soft and hard enamel pins and some high-quality poster prints of CATAPULTED art. Nothing too out of the ordinary there.

Now here is where I want to try something interesting. I have always enjoyed sculpting and I love the idea of sculpting a really cool bust that I can then use to create a mould, to in turn produce resin casts of the sculpture. I have been following a few people on Instagram that are extremely good at this process, making notes of process and tools. If I can do this successfully, the result will mean I’ll be offering some hand cast, hand painted busts/figurines (cast from a hand made sculpture). I think lovers of the comic will really enjoy these. I also have a little idea to put a small twist on these busts that will make them really special. It’s something I’m going to work hard at and if I can deliver, I think backers will be in for a real treat.

There are a few other rewards I am toying with mainly clothing ideas but these are difficult to do as part of a Kickstarter. Clothing is definitely something I’ll be offering later on but because there are so many variants in size and type (mens/womens t shirts) alone, I think it’s likely I’ll offer these post Kickstarter through a print on demand website.

Art Rewards

Original sequential artwork is something that is always popular, and I want to be able to offer something that is really tied into the comic, not just pin-up art of characters, although that will be on offer (in A4 and maybe A3 sizes). I’ve had a few offers in the past for the original CATAPULTED cover but this occupies a special place in my heart and I’m not ready to let go of it just yet.

Nearly all of my art has been digital but for this Kickstarter I would like to have some covers and certain pages (maybe splash pages) drawn traditionally (meaning they were then scanned in and then used in the comic). That way backers can have a chance to own a piece of the original artwork used in the comic. Obviously, these will be limited in number and will be reserved for higher tier backers but I think it would be great to own some of the art used in the comic.

So when, exactly?

I’m back to the original question. When is the next Kickstarter going to take place? I would love to say it would be this side of 2019. And there is a chance it may still happen this year. However, there are a lot of things I have on my plate at the moment, including working at my day job which always takes a lot of time and energy out of me. In addition, I am in the process of building an art studio in my garden. A couple of creative friends have also built their ‘man-cave’ for their creative endeavours and its served them well. Having a specific space for comic creation will help me get organised and focused for this project and give me a little more space to create. If you follow me on Instagram I’ll post updates on it’s construction and maybe I’ll do a post on it when its completed.

In the meantime, I’ll leave you with a fun time lapse video I took when trying to take some nice photos of my cats with CATAPULTED comics, enjoy!

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