A Kamloops artist has self-published his first comic book after a year of work.
Nick Klie, manager of High Octane Comics, has produced his own webcomic since 2015. Now he has released a physical copy of one of his stories.
“It's called Life the Necropolis,” said Klie.
“I made it all myself. I wrote it, I drew it, I inked it, I coloured it, I produced it here in town. I got a print shop on the North Shore called The Printing Place to print it for me.”
The science fiction adventure series follows a wandering mercenary named Life who travels to different planets with violence and lunacy ensuing. Klie said he takes inspiration from comic book artists like Jean Giraud and Carlos Ezquerra.
The art is drawn in a retro 1970s fantasy style that can be found in old Heavy Metal and Judge Dredd comic books.
“I kind of don't want to do the new style. I want to do the old style. I just I love reading those comics so much. It's kind of fun to play in that world,” said Klie.
“Not a ton of people are doing that, too. So I guess in a sense it helps me stand out a little bit.”
Klie said that he had drawn a lot as a kid, but stopped when he reached high school.
“I stopped drawing for about 15 years. And I had to kind of learn relearn everything, and then learn things I never knew how to do in the first place,” said Klie.
Klie began producing his own webcomic in 2015 after working on art projects with the Kamloops Art Gallery, which prompted Klie to begin drawing again.
Klie used the webcomic as practice until he had improved enough to charge for his work.
“I started putting it out online and facing an audience, like making a deadline, making a schedule and being accountable. And trying my hardest. And i’ve been doing that since 2015,” said Klie.
“Now I'm at the point where I feel like, yeah, okay, I can print this into a comic and I think people will actually be willing to pay for it.”
Most monthly comic books are 20 pages and take a team of dedicated artists. Klie has made his comic book entirely by himself, producing two complete pages a month.
“This book is rightfully dedicated to my loving wife Alison who not only encourages me, but puts up with me locking myself in my office, drawing all night like a madman,” he said.
Klie said that he’s been pleasantly surprised by the support he’s received, thanking friends, family and strangers for supporting his work.
“You have your doubts, right? Like, nobody’s going to like this. It’s not as good as I think it is. What aren’t I rich yet?” Klie said.
“People have just been great, man. I really appreciate it”
Klie said he’s enjoyed the entire process of creating his own comic book.
“This might be the only thing I ever do. Maybe it goes nowhere, but I’ve enjoyed every minute of it,” said Klie.
“So if you're thinking about it, just go for it.”
Copies of Life the Necropolis can be purchased in-store, at 250 Third Avenue, or online.