Think comic books and images of Superman, Batman and Spider-Man come to mind. Release any new movie or comic book with either of those characters and they already have a massive name recognition which is three-fourths of the battle there.
While Marvel and DC Comics are truly megalithic giants in the comic book industry, there are smaller independent companies that are carving niches for themselves. I wanted to highlight one company in particular and that’s 215 Ink, which is based in Philadelphia.
215 Ink Publisher, Andrew Del Quadro was kind enough to talk with ScienceFictionZone about being an independent creator in the comic book industry.
SCIENCEFICTIONZONE.COM: It is plain to see that 215 Ink is making their presence known. I am constantly talking to independent creators, and 215 Ink always comes up in conversation.
How is 215 Ink able to get around it?
ANDREW DEL QUADRO: We certainly can’t compete with name recognition or character popularity, so we look for other less conventional ways to stand out. Being a small company primarily made up of new and rising talent, we have the ability to do things that larger companies don’t.
For example, we can put out torrent files of our issues to build a fan base for not only the title but also for the creators. We have posted to image boards on 4chan in the past and we can push heavily into digital. Things like the 215 Ink tablet loaded with all of our comics is not something I can see the larger publishers doing any time soon for obvious reasons.
SCIENCEFICTIONZONE.COM: Does 215 Ink work to be a creator-friendly company?
ANDREW DEL QUADRO: We are able to attract and retain talent because we take chances on new channels and have the flexibility to try new things. Our contracts are incredibly open and allow creators to retain 100 percent of their rights and they can leave at any moment for any reason. We have built a lot of trust with our creators and it has become more of a family then a business.
SCIENCEFICTIONZONE.COM: With comic books, why is science fiction, horror and fantasy so popular as a subject matter?
ANDREW DEL QUADRO: I think the comic medium is a perfect format for those types of stories. It seems to translate really well when a talented artist and writer get together.
SCIENCEFICTIONZONE.COM: Thanks so much, Andrew. Are there any particular 215 Ink Comics that you want to highlight?
ANDREW DEL QUADRO: Yeah! Check out Warped, Igor: Occult Detective, Blue Moth.
Warped – It is a sci-fi comedy about a Girl and a Robot trying to make rent on their 2 bedroom spaceship. Written, Artist and Lettered by Fernando Pinto.
Igor: Occult Detective – IGOR: OCCULT DETECTIVE is a blend of horror, humor, and detective fiction, inspired by comics like HELLBOY, DYLAN DOG, and THE GOON, the classic UNIVERSAL and HAMMER horror films, as well as the fiction of H.P. LOVECRAFT and SIR ARTHUR CONAN DOYLE.
Starring everyone’s favorite hunchbacked lab assistant, IGOR, and his nearly indestructible compatriot MR. FRANK as they face all sorts of horrors from Lovecraftian tentacle monsters and elder gods to vampires and zombies in a 1920′s setting.
IGOR is brought to by New York Times Best Selling comic creators KYLE J. KACZMARCZYK (FUBAR: Empire of the Rising Dead, FUBAR: European Theater of the Damned, The Red Eye, Pulp) and H. CRAWFORD (FUBAR: Empire of the Rising Dead, FUBAR: European Theater of the Damned, Atomic Robo: Last Stop, Bad Science).
Blue Moth – Blue Moth is a super powered and space flying A.I Bioroid, powered by the energies from a blue star and built by a techno sorcerer and alchemist only known as The Constructor. The Constructor is wanted by intergalactic law for brutal and dangerous experiments and has hidden his consciousness within the programming of Blue Moth, one of his more powerful creations. It is written and drawn by Rolf Lejdegård.
For more information, visit their site here.