One of the challenges I faced when I began work on the alien series of comics was a change in medium. In The Big Bad Wolf I used only pencil. After 90 odd pages of that I felt it was time to pick up something else. Photoshop came and went. Spending hours looking at a screen didn’t seem like drawing to me. In the end I made a small leap to pen and ink.

The frustrating thing about pencil was the effort it took to get a really good black. It looked awesome when it came off, but it took a lot of time and patience. I wanted to do more idea making and story writing instead of scratching an area of paper the size of a coin for an hour. Pen and ink seemed to solve the problem. Touch a pen to paper and you get black and, well, black.

Ink is a challenge. I use a standard black ink and a brush in some areas of the comic. Ink is never really on your side. It dries too fast, leaving streaky lines everywhere. It dries too slow, just delaying long enough until you rest your sleeve on it. In water it goes: too grey, too grey, too grey, too grey, jet black. It is a medium that needs to be trained. Here is a page from the first issue, An Alien Arrives that shows me grappling with ink, learning everything the hard way.