Cool indie comics prove print's not dead

OFF LIFE is a free quarterly magazine full of indie comics. Editor Daniel Humphry explains why they make it.

off life issue 12

The new issue of OFF LIFE is out now with cover artwork by The Project Twins

In an ever-immersive digital world, it can be hard to get the general public to pick up a printed magazine – yes, even if it's free. Daniel Humphry is the editor of quarterly indie comics magazine OFF LIFE; featuring a wide-range of styles and stories, the mag is now on its 12th issue.

In this latest effort, Humphry pens some thoughts about why they made – and continue to make OFF LIFE – with insights into their hard graft and sincere thanks to their readers. Featuring an exclusive interview with Black Hole creator Charles Burns, you'd be silly not to snap this one up.

Take a look at what he has to say about the indie publishing industry...

Costly effort

OFF LIFE issue 12

Artwork created by Sean Wárs for OFF LIFE issue one

"It's certainly not for money. After print, distribution and web costs we're lucky to grab a burger for our efforts. It's not for any sort of admiration either.

"Sure, we enjoy hearing people say nice things about OFF LIFE, we're not masochists, but those kind words soon fade after seven hours lugging stacks of free magazines around crowded cities. This copy you're holding right now probably has a sweat mark on it somewhere. Check for yourself."

Independent business

off life issue 12

Artwork created by Jean Jullien for OFF LIFE issue 10

"No, as cliched, trite, pretentious and mealy-mouthed as it sounds... we do it because we believe in the printed magazine as a medium and the artists' work we feature within its pages.

"For every utterly crap moment of running an independent magazine on a shoestring budget – and trust us, they are foul and often – there's the moment when you open an email and discover the most beautiful piece of work that you've seen in months.

"And when that happens you know, you absolutely know, that there's nothing for it – you're going to have to make another issue, because there is no way that you're letting this incredible piece of work get stuck, unloved and unappreciated on some obscure blog somewhere.

Prolific creators

off life issue 12

The magazine has seen a wide range of impressive cover art

"We'd rather haul it around on heavy paper drenched in sweat. There are also the moments when a creator as prolific as Charles Burns drops you an email to say he'd be game for an interview in your little magazine. Seriously, that guy is ace.

"Really, this is just a long winded and self-indulgent way of saying thank you to everybody who has supported OFF LIFE over the last three years. Whether you've submitted work, blogged about us, bought back issues or even just flicked through our pages in a bar someplace – we appreciate each and every one of you."

You can order a copy of issue 12 – and any back issues – on the OFF LIFE website.

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