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New Comic “Stranger Danger” Available Now!

August 12, 2014

Finally there is a new comic here at queertales.com. I just finished a short nine page story called Stranger Danger, that you can read right now!

Strnager Danger - short comic by Ragnar B.

Hopefully the wait for my next comic won’t be quite as long. :)

Making Comics

March 23, 2014

panels-and-gutters-sample-pageWhile there haven’t been many updates here in recent months, I’ve been busy with comics related work in the form of writing a series of tutorials on Making Comics with GIMP, and doing some major updates to my GIMP Book plug-in.

In the meantime my little 9 page comic has been moving along exceptionally slowly. I’ve pencilled all the pages, and inked two, but coloring still remains. Eventually, whenever it’s finished, I’ll publish it here on queertales.com.

I’m Dreaming of a Black Christmas!

December 24, 2013

xmas2013

It’s well into the 24th, and I should have gone to sleep hours ago, but instead I sat up and drew this. I hope you enjoy it, and have a Gay Ol’ Christmas!

Status Update

August 18, 2013

I’ve moved some relevant blog posts from my old site, ragtag.net to here. They contain some early sketches for The Raft that I thought you might enjoy. I’ve collected these posts under the ragtag.net tag.

You may also have noticed that this site hasn’t been updated for almost two years. I’ve been a bit busy with life and other projects, including some open-source software development. One of the tools I’ve developed is GIMP Book. It’s a tool for managing multiple pages, such as comic books, when using GIMP.

david

For those of you that don’t know GIMP, it’s an open-source graphics and image manipulation program, that works on Linux, Windows and Mac. It works in much the same way as Photoshop, except that you can get it for free from gimp.org.

I’ve also been trying to bring an old artistic 3D renderer back to life, called Jot, by writing a Blender exporter for it. Jot let’s you render your 3D animations with a hand drawn look and feel. I’ve rendered out the status of David (modeled by gabrielmda) in Jot, to give you an impression of what it can do.

As for more comics, there just may  be some in the near future. I’m currently, albeit extremely slowly, working on a short 8-9 page comics using Gimp Book. In addition I’ve got several projects on the backburner that may, or may not come to fruition.

These include a couple of longer stories, that I may turn into either comics or novels with some illustrations (as drawing long format comics is just too much work, and I’m lazy). In addition I’ve wanted to bring Now and Then back to life, either as an animated film, as originally intended, or as a painted comics. Either way, I’m not making any promises, and it may be another year or two until queertales.com sees another update.

:D

Christmas is a Little Different This Year

December 24, 2011

Here is a little Christmas card for you, that I hope you enjoy.

Santa having fun on the beach with two friends.

As you might have guessed from the card, I’m spending Christmas in Thailand this year. Last year I was up in the Norwegian mountains with my family in -25C, and now we’re down in Hua-Hin, in +30C. Both times I caught a cold.

I must admit it feels a bit strange spending Christmas in the sun, but I think I could definitely get used to it. :)

A big สุขสันต์วันคริสมาสต์ to you all.

(A small disclaimer: I wanted to do detailed shading to it, but just ran out of time, and I used photo-reference completely blatantly for that picture).

“The Raft” is Complete

December 14, 2011

After a few months of regularly publishing new page of “The Raft” online, the story is now complete, with all 60 pages available here.

You may notice that underneath each page of my comics, there are a few icons. The first is for downloading the comic you’re reading as a .cbz file, the second gives you a thumbnail view of the comic plus a copy of the manuscript, the third is for sharing the comic with your friends through social media sites (please do), and the last one just sends you to the front page.

If you would rather read it on paper, it’s still avaible in print at a reduced price of only US$9.95 for the remainder of 2011. A big thank you to all you guys who bought my book so far.

David is a Funeral Director, Who Just Happens to be Gay

October 26, 2011

David is a funeral director, who happens to be gay.

Phrases like that are commonly heard when discussing gay characters in fiction, but what do they really mean?

On the surface they simply mean that the characters gayness is not important to the story, but if you dig a little deeper it has a more subtle and darker undertone. Many people, both gay and straight, attach negative connotations to gay themed comics, books and films, and by saying that the main character “just happens to be gay”, they are trying to distance the work from the feared “gay” label that might otherwise brand the story. But is it so bad for a book or film to be called gay, if it in fact is gay?

A straight co-worker of mine argued that the film “I Love You Phillip Morris” wasn’t really a gay movie, because it was entertaining for a straight audience. To me, “I Love You Phillip Morris” is most definitely a gay movie, it has a gay lead character who is out and proud, a coming-out story, a gay romance and gay sex, the only thing that sets it apart from most gay comedies is that it has famous lead actors and a big budget. Maybe “gay themed” has become synonymous with a low budget, low production values and limited talent.

It is understandable that major publishers and film studios avoid the gay label. They like to stick to tried and tested formulas that they know will sell. A gay lead character could easily scare away 90% of the straight audience, which would make them loose money on the project. Smaller specialized publishers, who have lower costs, can afford to cater to a niche audience.

A gay tale that is well told, should be able to find an audience based on it’s own merits. However this does not seem to be the case. The film studios may actually be right on this one. Once a story is labeled gay, most straight people, especially guys, will avoid it. They don’t want to see two guys kissing and they don’t want “the gay agenda” shoved down their throats. I guess it’s partially because people like stories they can easily relate to, and partially it’s good ol’ homophobia.

Maybe we haven’t come as far with gay rights as we think. We still find the need to mention that a character “happens to be gay”, somehow deflating his gayness and making him more acceptable to a straight audience, while you never hear anyone say that someone “just happens to be straight”. In fact a sentence like, “007 is a special agent for the MI5, who just happens to be straight”, sounds palpably absurd.

Video Review of The Raft by the Gay Comics Geek

October 6, 2011

The Gay Comics Geek has just posted a great video review over at his YouTube channel. Check out the review, and many of the fun and interesting posts and videos over at his site.

New Review of The Raft Over at the Gay League

September 25, 2011

Joe Palmer, of the Gay League, has just posted a great review of “The Raft and Other Stories“.

Where to Buy “The Raft and Other Stories”

September 23, 2011

There are now several ways you can buy my book, “The Raft and Other Stories”. The simplest is probably by clicking the shop link above, which takes you to my shop page. Payment and shipping is handled by CreateSpace, and not me directly. If you would rather use Amazon, it’s available there too.

If you don’t like shopping on-line, the book is available through bookstores too. Just ask for the title, and they will most likely be able to order it for you through Ingram. If I’m lucky, they may even buy a few extra copies to stock on their shelves.

Finally, if you happen to live in Oslo, Norway, you can find the book in the comic book store Outland at the train station (Østbanehallen) and in Tronsmo. I also donated a copy to the comics library, Serieteket, which you can borrow if you would rather not spend money on the book or are short on cash. :)