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Above left - the new Green Lion Comics publishing logo. © Adrian Banfield.
Story number forty-one:- A Week in the Life of Albert Copperwaite, Railway Guard.
This month we find out exactly what Albert Copperwaite (The Guard), does in his day job, when he's not The Guard.
March 2017 - Albert as a Utility Man Operative for British Intelligence, during the Great War, is sent to Cairo, Egypt for a mission.
41) A Week in the
Life of Albert
*** Story background notes ***
Note - Spoilers!! Please read the story first, then the notes accompaning the adventure, which can be read on the relevant story page via the link above.
The aim of this strip is a personal journey into discovering how to write and draw a comic strip.
If anyone has been adversely affected by reading these stories and notes, a telephone helpline number will be published in due course!*******
Who is that masked Lego hero?
Surprisingly, this series it still running! Later this year (fingers crossed), a major milestone will be reached, with the publication of the fiftieth issue, which will probably surprise me as much as my readers! The majority of the stories are all leading up to this issue. I'm hoping it will all work out.
The end result will see The Guard's world change, and set our hero on a new course. It's a bit of a tall order and hopefully the publication schedule won't slip. But as with everything, it will depend on whether I have the time. I also have other plans, but those won't be completed until much later this year or possibly in 2018. We'll see.******
As of January 2015 Green Lion Comics has a brand new logo (above left), designed by inc-dot, York. The new logo will provide a more 'professional' look to the comic.
This page has been re-organised. The stories and index to the Guard series have been archived with each story now having its own page and accessible via the buttons below.******
For those you like to have posters of your favourite characters, I've created several Guard posters. Please feel free to print out a copy and place them somewhere prominent!
Please also click on the character cards below, for information about who's who in the series. There are now seven sets of cards in the collection. The image on the far right below is for the back of the cards. This has been provided for those of you thinking of printing out your own Guard cards.
Character Biography Cards.
back of card
Behind the Scenes at Green Lion Comics
For those of you who are interested in my working method, I have added three pages below which explain how the Guard character and his world came to life and how the stories are created. Additional pages maybe added at the editor's whim. Possibly an alternative title might be - 'How Not to Go About Creating a Comic Strip.'
Note - other Behind The Scenes pages will from issue 30 onwards be posted on the relevant story page. Thank you.
The following information can be found below -
For previous Guard stories - please click on the relevant page below. This will take you to that particular story and notes.
Note - Access to the Guard Index is now via the first button below.
to the series.
2) The Guard is Dead,
3) Jack and Jill.
4) The Kill.
6) Prison Blues.
7) Click, Whirrrll.
A Study in
9) This is Yorkton.
10) First Meeting.
11) The Tarmac
12) A Brief History
13) The Master Thief.
14) Winter Fair.
16) Hold My Hat!
17) The Claw
18) The Claw
19) Mary's Story.
20) The Lone
21) Race For Life.
22) A Game of
23) The Coffin
Ship, part one.
24) The Patrol
25) A Guard
26) The Coffin
Ship, Part Three.
27) Twas the Night
28) A Short History
of Yorkton Docks.
29) Ferriby's Big
30) Single to
31) A Mini
32) Spinning Wheels.
33) Arctic Station
34) Running Commentary.
35) The Return of
The Grey Shadow
36) The Return of
The Grey Shadow
37) Chinese Whispers.
38) Remember, Remember...
40) Past, Present
41) A Week in the
Life of Albert
Collected Guard story volumes.
(Note - In addition to the stories, each volume also contains story background notes, relevant brief character biography cards, behind the scenes information, an updated Guard index and a comic related article).
Volume One - Black Swans
collects adventures 1 - 12.
Volume Two - Red For Danger,
Green For Action -
adventures 13 - 22.
adventures 23 - 32.
Background information for this series.
Note - the notes below are very much a work in progress.
The stories above has nothing to do with any D.C. Thomson story, (obviously)! This is my own poor attempt at trying to write and 'draw' a short comic strip. I've always wanted to do something like this, but whilst I am happy to do write story scripts (poorly no doubt), the drawing side was always a problem. I can't draw to save my life! And I don't know any artists, who I could collaborate with.
(I also apologise for inflicting these comic strips and views on an unsuspecting world. But on the other hand, there's not much point in producing something like this, if you don't show it off!)
After a long think about it (a couple of years or so), I finally hit upon using Lego Minifigs as my characters in the story. They are ideal for my strip. There are tens and tens of figures to choose from, from many different types of jobs. There are also different heads, hair-pieces, hats and other accessories available, thus allowing you to make your own figures. So thank you Lego. And also thank you to those who have produced clipart and to Serif Drawplus X6 software.
My guides will be books published by Will Eisner, (pronounced 'Isner') Scott McCloud and work I see by writers and artists in various comics in my collection. All will be acknowledged. (I apologise in advance to both authors and hope they will forgive the almighty train crash of stories below). Why these two authors? If you want to do something well, you need to learn from the best.
And one of the best (if not the best in this comic art form) is Will Eisner. Eisner (who died in 2005), published three strips for a sixteen page newspaper insert comic called The Spirit, which was synicated in sunday newspapers in the United States in the 1940's. (The two other main strips, they changed over the years, were Lady Luck and Mr. Mystic. These were written and drawn by other artists). In the weekly, seven page Spirit strip, Eisner explored how to tell a story experimenting in contect and form. If you are a comics fan and you haven't read any of his strips, then you should. (Even if your not a comic fan, you should). The Spirit comic insert had no cover, but it did have a Spirit splashpage. These pages served to attract the reader to the strips. And these Eisner splash pages are worth the admission fee on their own.
Below are a couple of examples of Eisner Spirit splash pages. Eye-catching I think you'll agree.
Above - two examples of Eisner's Spirit splash pages.
Those who know Eisner's Spirit work, may recognise in the strips below his influence in my work. (I should point out that I won't be able to match Eisner artwise, as I'm no artist. But I might achieve something storytelling wise). Although if I come within 1% of anything Eisner has done, I'll be well chuffed! Although, using Lego minifigs and clip art will restrict what I can do and achieve.
McCloud is another great teacher of the comic art form and has published various books on the subject as well as his own comics.
Why stories about the railway? Mainly, because I have an interest in this subject through working in the industry and research. I thought, it would be best to write about something I know about. The series will be mainly railway themed and set in the 1950's. I chose the 1950's as I wanted to avoid modern technology and I like that particular decade. I also want to do humorous, serious and dark stories. Although I'm finding that humour is working its way into many of my strips for some reason. So this is also something new I have discovered.
And before anyone asks, (not that they are likely too), "where do my ideas come from?" My reply is the same place as where everyones elses' ideas come from. Human beings have a powerful mind that is constantly working on ideas consciously or unconsciously. Have a problem at home or at work? Something that could be done better? Don't fret, your mind will churn it over and come up with a solution. And more often or not the answer is a simple solution. In my case it may involve the marrying of two ideas together to produce one fused idea. And remember the good thing about writing / drawing a comic is that the impossible is possible.