Welcome to the brief and rarely-updated website of Jason Towers, an Australian writer and illustrator. Not the one that sings, or any of those other ones on Facebook.
Batrisha and the Creepy Caretaker
Feast your eyes on the cover of Dillon Naylor’s new Batrisha book, published February 2022.
Batrisha and the Creepy Caretaker is (it says here) “a dark and amusing ghost story, rich with atmosphere, told in verse with silent movie style title cards and bold, decorative illustrations, lovingly styled after pulp-era magazines and retro comic books.” I’ve read it and I can tell you that’s accurate.
It’s a gorgeous all-ages hardcover picture book. The publisher, ComicOz, has done the Naylor lad proud with the very highest standard of publication design and production. This would look handsome on anyone’s shelf. (And it’s a steal at A$35.)
It’s available in local bookshops if they get stock from Novella Distribution, or you can order it directly here: Batrisha and the Creepy Caretaker.
The Who Adventures
If you’re here because you read David J Howe’s stunning non-fiction book (about fiction) The Who Adventures, hello and thanks for visiting. It’s nice to be briefly a little bit famous for two pieces of art from 1996.
It really is an amazing book. David’s books about Doctor Who tend to be definitive and this one is no exception. I feel a bit bad for not offering more info to David, given the extraordinary level of behind-the-scenes detail other illustrators and writers shared. For example, I produced a third interior illustration for the novel SLEEPY, which might pop up on this forsaken website at some point.
While you’re here, why not have a look at the Doctor Who section of this site?
Old Sixie versus the Bridge of Doom
Old Sixie is a whimsical four-page comic partly serialised in Data Extract 247 and 248, and printed in full in the double issue 250/251. The script is by Darran Jordan, with art and lettering by me. It’s based on a true story related by the actor Colin Baker in his column for the newspaper Bucks Free Press, but shamelessly embellished by Professor Jordan. Darran generously allowed me a free hand in drawing it. The first page is here, along with a panel or two from later in the story. Click the pics to open larger versions.
Here’s the pencil art for page 2 panel 5 of Old Sixie before inking. My default style is pencil art with watercolour hues, but that wouldn’t have been appropriate for this type of story, so inks it was. The pencils have an analogue character that’s missing from the published version.
Cutting Room Floor
My panels are drawn separately and composited in Adobe InDesign. The very last panel of Old Sixie was cropped after drawing, because when it was placed on the page, I could see that the background detail of the other bridge climber was just a distraction. The elderly gent ended up on the cutting room floor. So if there’s some award for the lamest bonus material ever, please consider voting for this:
The League of Extraordinary Companions
The League is an 8-page jam comic scripted by Craig Land and illustrated by several artists including yours truly. It was published in issue 250/251 of Data Extract, the venerable magazine of the Doctor Who Club of Australia.
The project was first floated way back in 2019. Some of the artists were interviewed for Data Extract issue 244 in Spring 2019 — but with the actual strip seeing print nearly three years later, the interview must have been mystifying for readers.
The hook for this story was that you get to see various Doctor Who companions interacting, so I went with a realistic style with strict likenesses. The initial panel layouts were created by using 3D modelling software to place “actors” into scenes, then laying photo-reference faces over the top. It was a mixed success; some of the panels are a bit cringeworthy. Here’s some behind the scenes art for a few panels. Click the pics to see larger versions.
Thrilled to be involved with HAH?!, a new Australian comedy magazine.
According to this press release it’s “…32 pages of full colour graphical wit from Scarlette Baccini, Samantha Boyd, Greg Gates, Owen Heitmann, Ben Hutchings, Stanton Marriott, Bruce Mutard, Dillon Naylor and Jason Towers.” That last bit is confirmed, I wrote some pages. And I also lettered and coloured some pages, since episode 1 of Preston Peace gets reprinted therein.
It’s made of actual paper and ink, not screen pixels. There’s a Facebook though: facebook.com/HAHcomic
HAH?! issue 1 is available from the (currently) respectable online retailer Ownaindi, ownaindi.com/shop/comics/hah.
Issue 2 is due later in 2019.
Preston Peace rises again
The second instalment of Preston Peace is in newsagents now, in the form of issue 8 of the anthology comic Aussie Aussie Aussie Oi Oi Oi. Or you can get it from the publisher’s website www.comicoz.com .
This instalment was written and coloured by me, and drawn by Adelaide comics guy Owen Heitmann. We’re lucky we got Owen on board early, because he recently received a grant from Arts South Australia to produce a full-length graphic novel of his own.
As always, Preston haunts www.prestonpeace.com and Facebook at facebook.com/PrestonPeaceComic .
Preston Peace lives
Preston Peace is a comic strip about a unique schoolboy, created by Jason and Australian comics legend Dillon Naylor. The first 8-page story (written by Jason, illustrated by Dillon) appears in issue 7 of the anthology Aussie Aussie Aussie Oi Oi Oi, available in newsagents now. Yay!
To find a newsagent near you that stocks Oi Oi Oi, type your postcode into this thingy.
For mail orders or subscriptions, see the publisher’s website www.comicoz.com .
For more Preston Peace goodness, see www.prestonpeace.com or dig him up on Facebook at facebook.com/PrestonPeaceComic .