Places To Put Money

My favourite social historian Darian Zam has been working over the last several years on a major project Coalfaces, a combination of an exhibition of posrtraits and 220 page book.

Darian has put countless hours into researching the largely unrecorded history of New Zealand products, business, commercial artists and more which he generously documents on his Long White Kid site. I'm personally indebted to Darian for the numerous occasions he has helped me with researching New Zealand comics and cartoonists, filling in gaps of information and bringing things to my attention.

I've cut and pasted Darian's words about his current project below, I heartily encourage anyone that might find it interesting to please help support his work.

Hi everyone,

Some of you are aware of the project I’ve been working on for the past six or so years. It’s called ‘Coalfaces’ and is an exhibition of portraits accompanied by a 220 page book. It was inspired by the time I spent living in an old mining town on the South Coast of NSW, Australia.

It couldn’t have been more different for someone who had resided in Sydney for nearly 20 years. Mount Kembla is notorious for being the site of Australia’s historically biggest industrial accident in which 95 people died.  

As such, most of the focus has been on the disaster and not so much what life was like afterwards. I have completed work based on the life stories of fifteen local elderly people and their memories of growing up there in the aftermath of that terrible tragedy. 

I’m passionate about recording the stories of older people before the information disappears for good.

I was hoping that I’d win the first inaugural local history ward in September and use the prize money to print the manuscript – but it wasn’t to be, unfortunately. So now I'm raising funds to print my book and stage my exhibition of portraits at the Wollongong City Art Gallery – which opens on Saturday 11th of March 2017. I'm now nearly halfway to my goal but it has taken ten weeks thus far and time is quickly running out.

There’s a preview of the book here. You can sponsor me for as little as one dollar a week; I need to find around 70 more five dollar sponsors to make my goal by March. There's a range of rewards listed at my Patreon site for different price points.

Many people have expressed they are more comfortable making a one-off direct donation rather than sign up to Patreon  - and this can be easily done via Paypal with 4 major cards. Or alternately, by bank deposit (AU or NZ).

Thanks so much for considering supporting Coalfaces, which will probably be my major life project as a social historian (mainly because I never intend to spend this long on something ever again!) 

Funds raised will be used to pay for shipping, printing, the opening and legal deposit commitments.

Best regards, dz

Homecooked Comics Festival 2015

In keeping with my tradition of untimely comics reportage here's a few notes from the Melbourne Homecooked Comics festival on the weekend of 24th-26th April this year.

I greatly enjoyed the expanded Homecooked Comics Festival this year with special guests (Dylan Horrocks, Paul Peart-Smith, Madeline Rosca, and Thomas Campi) and additional talks, exhibitions and presentations beyond the one day fair aspect. I think it was a rainy day? But there was a solid attendance of public eager to engage with the local comics scene. Some personal highlights in lazy bullet point form,

  • Talking to Dylan Horrocks about a grand plan for a New Zealand Comics Archive.
  •  Comic of the show for me was Art is a Lie by Susan Butcher and Carol Wood, first title from Bruce Mutard's Fabliaux. Collecting comics originally featured in American magazine Artillery, there is no art or cartooning style these women cannot ape and recontextualise.
  • Hanging out with my little bro who was sharing table duties with me, nice to see a bunch of his first mini-comics fly off the table -  look at his art here, Endpaper Anxiety.
  • Bernard Caleo
  • Chatting Love and Rockets with Matt Kyme
  • Meeting Paul Peart-Smith and chatting about my particular favourite comics of his.

A big thank you to organisers Sarah and Clea for offering me a spot to do a presentation on the career and life of New Zealand/Australian cartoonist Noel Cook.

Below a few pictures of comics people at Homecooked 2015, there were many more that I did not get to take snaps of because I'm a terrible stupid pretend comics paparazzo with barely adequate point and snap skills.

Bobby N took a whole bunch of better photos on his blog.

Claire Wilson and Michael Fikaris

Andrew Fulton

Scott Reid

Paul Peart-Smith , Thomas Campi and Dylan Horrocks

Steve Sparke

Scarlette Baccini

Frank Candiloro and Matthew Nicholls

Christian Roux, Neville Howard, and Alana Bruyn

Ben Hutchings

Darren Close

Matt Kyme

Brendan Halyday

Bernard Caleo and Sarah Howell

Bruce Mutard and Carol Wood

Dean Rankine

Marigold Bartlett

Tim Molloy

David C Mahler

Dale Maccanti

Jase Harper


Dylan Horrocks and Colin Wilson

Clint Cure

Jim Bridges of the Australian Cartoon Museum

Festival of the Photocopier Zine Fair 2015 part two

There were a lot more comic people at this years Sticky zine fair, apologies to the hundred odd folk I missed. Here's a few of the comics folk I managed to get holiday snaps of.

Rose Wu, Rosa Hughes-Currie and Linda Lew

Ben Juers and Michael Hawkins

Michael Fikaris

Merv Heers

Simon Hanselmann, JMKE, and HTML Flowers

Ele Jenkins

Nicky Minus and Bailey Sharp

Minicomics Mogul Andrew Fulton

Chris Gooch draws the zine scene

Phil Bentley

Jess Parker, Ben Hutchings, Scott Reid, and Captain David Blumenstein (focus optional)

Brendan Halyday and Frank Candiloro

Brent "The Destroyer" Willis

Ive Sorocuk

Jase Harper and James Andre

Nicky Minus and Sam Wallman

Bobby N

HTML Flowers

Marc Pearson

Tim Molloy

Not Michael Fikaris

After the wonderful afternoon selling good comics to good Melbourne folk, Brent Willis and I headed over to Port Melbourne to purchase healthy salads. In a terrifying confrontation we found Brent's toughest of the tough anti-anti-heroes from THRUST JUSTICE had escaped the page and entered our reality! We hastily purchased out healthy salads and retreated to the safety of my Art Deco apartment on the waterfront.

Thrust Justice in the "COMICS"

Thrust Justice in "THE REAL WORLD"

To learn more about Thrust Justice purchase a copy to read with your healthy salad from the Pikitia store.

Florence and (the) m'Zines Zine Fair

Pikitia Press had a fun time at the Florence and (the) m'Zines zine fair last week. met some lovely new people and caught up with old friends. We were amongst a dozen tables in the Nightingale Warehouse as part of Anstey Village Better Block Party. There should be more block parties with zine fairs every week throughout the year! Big thanks to Alex Clark for organising and getting us a spot in there.

Squishface Studios' 'Serious' David Blumenstein and 'Thoughtful' Ben Hutchings

Darling David Mahler

Ashley from Caldera Press, Alice from Hobart, and Sarah from Caldera Press. Melbourne Risograph studio, Caldera Press!

I ducked out for thirty minutes to visit Melbourne's jam packed old comics storehouse Evil Empire. As I walk in some punk is harassing the owner for copies of Bongo Comics non-Simpson brilliance, Gary Panter's Jimbo. Too late Sucka! I already bought them all years ago. Ha! Ha! Fool! Evil Empire has treasure, I traded the owner some stupid supey-hero comics for these NZ mini-comic gems by Karl Wills, Adam Jamieson, Timothy Kidd and Sophie McMillan.


Some Melbourne Comic Events That You Could Possibly Go To

Alyx Dennison's Talking People @ Night, poster by young firebrand talent Marc Pearson. I believe this event involves some fine cartooning talent amongst the night's performers.

Squishface Studio's celebrate their third birthday on Monday Jan 26th. FB event page.

Tim Molloy exhibition in February at the Old Bar, Fitzroy, Melbourne. 24th Feb.

The All Star Women's Comic Book Club has already happened today but because I'm slow and feeble I'm only posting about it now. Still, it is on every month and you may wish to attend next month. More details on the All Star Women's Comic Book Club FB page.


The Melbourne comics collective where members are required to be able to bench a minimum are launching a quarterly anthology Melbourne Comics Quarterly. More details at and the FB event page.

Sissy Blvd running from Friday 16 January – Sunday 15 March. More info here, and FB event page.

Lee Lai, Katie Parrish, Merv Heers and Sam Wallman are queer cartoonists based in Melbourne. Using The Substation's front gallery space and Transit Gallery billboards, this exhibition will examine remnants of gay liberation, reflections on contemporary queer assimilation and resilience, mincing the fine line between subtlety and obviousness. Supported by The Substation and Hobsons Bay City Council.

The Melbourne comics meet up is on February 7th at the usual place and time, Prince Alfred Hotel in Carlton, 2pm - 6pm. FB event page.