Monday, May 30, 2011

... the fans made me do it!!

Honest! The fans I tell you! There I was, minding my own sedentary business, wallowing in the folds of depression, lamenting a techno savvy world that had passed me by and feeling that Hollywood had shunted me neatly off to the sidelines. Then THEY happened into my periphery.... YOUTH! New brained and staring at me with their clear, blinky eyes, seeping horizonless optimism... believing in me! It began with Saeko Igarashi she actually sought the six issue mini series, the musty comics she held gleefully in her hands had been on this earth as long as her! With me, a little faith goes a long way, so Saeko's enthusiasm and determined attitude to her own work served to help me revisit comics again. I discovered a new style and with it a fresh look at my own project.

Then, years later, Brandon Graham cold emailed me. A fellow professional cartoonist, who embraced my comic at the tender age of ten, and went on to establish industry contacts that he was now willing to share with me. That one email helped me turn a page in my life and embrace a new era. I dedicate this blog to all those who cared enough to tell the world about the work I did half a lifetime ago. I was 24 when the last issue of Zooniverse came out, now I am 48 and about to start anew, let's see what the old boy can do, huh?

My deepest gratitude to those who kept the light on for me to find my way home ....
Saeko Igarashi
Brandon Graham
Elena Steier:
Zander and Kevin Cannon


  1. Look forward to some new issues of Zooniverse. Makes me very happy! You are a great inspiration!

  2. Thanks Dylan, strangely it has been inspiring to me to realize that I've inspired others. I had no idea how many of you were out there until my blog and DA page.

  3. And what am I...chopped liver? I was one of your first nerd-fan-boy. I've been forgotten and replaced by newer and younger nerd fans.

    I know what you're thinking, "Moe, being a seasoned professional, will be embarrassed if I say he was one of my first fans." Then let me say it for you! Fil, I'm proud to say I'm still one of your first and biggest fans.

    You've not only been a great inspiration to me professionally, but also personally. I'm very glad to see you're now blogging. Welcome my friend.

  4. @Marcelo Vignali Very true, and I apologize for leaving you and any other artist who I've worked with who might feel the same way. My intention wasn't to insult you, but you are correct I saw you as a professional and not a fan. Thank you for your generosity and welcoming me with open arms. It means a lot.

  5. Ådd me to the list of fanboys.

    Zooniverse had a pretty profound effect on me when it came out (profound enough that, 24 years later, I just did a search for "Fil Barlow Zooniverse" and found your blog).

    The Zooniverse comics really got me excited about comics as a medium for getting across big visual ideas... That and that you were based in Melbourne and only about 10 years older than I was. Gave me something to aspire too. I've ended up working in animation the last 15 or so years but always maintained an interest in comics and still thinking I might try my hand at it one day. There's still very little out there that can hold a candle to Zooniverse (but enough that its worth having a look every month or so).

    Anyw....It's great to see you've started up a blog...

    Looking forward to hopefully seeing some new art along with the historical archives.

  6. @dave While I'm preparing my new project I'm filling in the wait with this old work, often recoloring takes up a bit of time, but I promise to show new stuff soon. Thank you for all of your support over the years!!

  7. Brandon introduced me to Zooniverse over lunch, and it has haunted me ever since!
    I WISH I had found this stuff when I was 10... but better late than never.

  8. @Mr.Esty 15 might be a better age, but at least you are here! Welcome!