Kippax, West Yorkshire, England
|Notable works||Breakfast After Noon
Slow News Day
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Andrew "Andi" Watson (born 1969) is a British cartoonist and illustrator best known for the graphic novels Breakfast After Noon, Slow News Day and his series Love Fights, published by Oni Press and Slave Labor Graphics.
Watson has also worked for more mainstream American comic publishers with some work at DC Comics, a twelve-issue limited series at Marvel Comics, with the majority at Dark Horse Comics, moving recently to Image Comics.
Andi Watson was born in the Wakefield Infirmary and raised in Kippax, West Yorkshire by working class parents. He studied foundation art at Dewsbury college followed by a graphic design / illustration course at Liverpool Polytechnic (now Liverpool John Moores University). He currently lives in Stoke-on-Trent.
For his final degree show Watson produced the small press comic Samurai Jam along with t-shirts and bubble-gum cards. The comic was rooted in skateboarding and punk rock culture and artistically influenced by Japanese Manga, specifically Akira, and the American alternative comic Love and Rockets. Three issues were produced by 1993, photocopied with covers spray-painted with a stencil, which generated some interest within the British small press comics scene.
Watson approached various American publishers and was taken on by Dan Vado of Slave Labor Graphics in 1993 who published four issues of Samurai Jam. These were not a success, due in part to the wildly different art styles Watson employed with each issue, but Vado kept the door open and Watson returned in 1995 with Skeleton Key, a monthly 16-page comic that ran for 30 issues and cemented his reputation.
After Skeleton Key Watson moved to Oni Press with Geisha, a graphic novel about a robot girl artist. Rather than approach the issue of her being a robot Watson used the story to examine the ideas of fake and real. The book was an artistic bridge for Watson between the manga-inspired Skeleton Key and his current, more European, style.
The Geisha one-shot comic marked a dramatic shift in Watson's style, bringing in stylistic influences from European creators such as François Avril and Dupuy and Berberian, but retaining the slow pacing of long-form Manga. This came to fruition with Breakfast After Noon, a "slice of life" story set in the industrial city of Stoke-on-Trent in Britain. This was followed by the novella Dumped, a love story produced in association with the BIG festival in Turin.
Watson returned to Slave Labor in 2002 with Slow News Day, a graphic novel set around a small town British newspaper which dealt with English attitudes to Americans and the theme of big versus small audience.
He followed that with a one-shot featuring the fox spirit Kitsune from his earlier series Skeleton Key, this time in a tale set in medieval Japan, scripted by Woodrow Phoenix.
His current work is the romantic comedy series Love Fights published by Oni along with Paris, a limited series for Slave Labor scripted by Watson with art by Simon Gane. Recent solo work, like Glister and Princess At Midnight, has been published at Image Comics.
Work for hire
- Samurai Jam (Slave Labor, 1993, tpb The Complete Samurai Jam, 176 pages, 2003, ISBN 0-943151-74-0)
- Skeleton Key (1995):
- Skeleton Key v1 : Beyond The Threshold (96 pages, Slave Labor, 2000, ISBN 0-943151-12-0)
- Skeleton Key v2 : The Celestial Calendar (198 pages, Slave Labor, 1999, ISBN 0-943151-15-5)
- Skeleton Key v3 : Telling Tales (96 pages, Slave Labor, 2001, ISBN 0-943151-13-9)
- Skeleton Key v4 : Cats and Dogs (104 pages, Slave Labor, 2000, ISBN 0-943151-19-8)
- Skeleton Key v5 : Roots (104 pages, Slave Labor, 2000, ISBN 0-943151-26-0)
- Negative Burn: "Skeleton Key: Bring on the Clouds" #44 (Caliber Comics, 1997)
- Dark Horse Presents:
- "Skeleton Key" (in Dark Horse Presents #126, Dark Horse, 1997)
- Annual 1998: "Skeleton Key: Witch" (Dark Horse, 1998)
- "Dead Love" (with pencils by David Perrin and inks by Sandu Florea, in Dark Horse Presents #141, Dark Horse, 1999, collected in Buffy the Vampire Slayer Omnibus volume 4)
- "Skeleton Key: Dead Can't Dance" (in Dark Horse Presents vol. 2 #5, Dark Horse, 2011)
- "Skeleton Key: Room Service" (in Dark Horse Presents vol. 2 #6, Dark Horse, 2011)
- "Skeleton Key: Lost Property" (in Dark Horse Presents vol. 2 #7, Dark Horse, 2011)
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer #1-11, 13-15, 17-19 (Dark Horse, 1998–2000) collected as:
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer Omnibus volume 3 (328 pages, February 2008, ISBN 1-59307-885-4) collects previous collections:
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer Omnibus volume 4 (368 pages, May 2008, ISBN 1-59307-968-0) collects previous collections:
- Geisha (Oni, 1998, tpb The Complete Geisha, 2003, ISBN 1-929998-51-1)
- Aliens vs Predator: Xenogenesis (with pencils by Mel Rubi and inks by Mark Lipka and Norman Lee, 4-issue mini-series, Dark Horse, 1999)
- Breakfast After Noon (200 pages, Oni, 2000, ISBN 1-929998-14-7)
- X-Men Unlimited #30 (with Mike Lilly and Jim Mahfood, Marvel, 2000)
- Bizarro Comics (DC Comics, 240 pages, hardcover, 2001, ISBN 1-56389-779-2, softcover, 2003, ISBN 1-56389-958-2):
- "The One That Got Away" (in Star Wars Tales, Dark Horse, 2001, collected in Star Wars Tales volume 2, May 2002, Dark Horse, ISBN 1-56971-757-5, Titan Books, ISBN 1-84023-442-3)
- Slow News Day (160 pages, Slave Labor, 2001, ISBN 1-59362-080-2)
- Dumped (56 pages, Oni, 2002, ISBN 1-929998-41-4)
- Grendel: Red, White, & Black #2: "Devil's Karma" (Dark Horse, 2002, tpb, 2005, ISBN 1-59307-201-5)
- Hellboy: Weird Tales #1: "Party Pooper" (Dark Horse, 2003, collected in Hellboy: Weird Tales volume 1, December 2003, ISBN 1-56971-622-6)
- Love Fights (2003):
- Namor (with co-author Bill Jemas, and pencils by Salvador Larroca and inks by Danny Miki, 12-issue series, Tsunami/Marvel, 2003)
- Kitsune Tales (with writer Woodrow Phoenix, 48 pages, Slave Labor, 2003, ISBN 0-943151-79-1)
- Little Star (176 pages, Oni, 2005, ISBN 1-932664-38-6)
- Paris (with art by Simon Gane, 5-issue limited series, Slave Labor, 2005–2006, tpb, 144 pages, August, 2007, ISBN 1-59362-081-0)
- The Amazing Adventures of The Escapist #8: "Powder Burns" (Dark Horse, 2005)
- Put the Book Back on the Shelf: a Belle and Sebastian Anthology: "I Could Be Dreaming" (Image Comics, 2006)
- Clubbing (with Josh Howard, graphic novel, 176 pages, Minx, 2007, ISBN 1-4012-0370-1)
- Glister (3-issue mini-series, Image Comics, 2007, tpb, 64 pages, October 2007, ISBN 1-58240-884-X)
- Princess At Midnight (64 pages, graphic novel, Image Comics, 2008, ISBN 1-58240-928-5)
- 15 Love (with artist Tommy Ohtsuka, 3-issue mini-series, Marvel, 2011)
- Official website
- Andi Watson on Myspace
- Andi Watson at Oni Press
- Andi Watson at Marvel.com
- Preview of Paris at Slave Labor Graphics