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Okay, whadda we got here?

Okay, whadda we got here?

Part Two: Agitation continues today with the next scene.

“You guys smell something funny in here?”

This warehouse scene went through many script revisions during the writing process and even while I was drawing the pages. I had trouble laying out the interior, and frequently diverged from what I’d written in the script. In the end, nearly the entire action scene was improvised.

READ THE NEW SCENE HERE.

Time for Plan B

Time for Plan B

Part Two: Agitation continues today with the next scene.

“One warrant as promised.”

South branch of the Chicago River

This is the south branch of the Chicago River. Bridgeport is just south of it. It’s an old, traditionally blue-collar, Irish neighborhood where the White Sox play at the now former Comiskey Park. It’s also where the younger Mayor Daley grew up.

I drew this page in the spring of 2004 after a friend showed me around South Side. I was looking for a warehouse to photograph for this scene. It was foreign territory to me at the time, because I was a “North Sider” and rarely had occasion to venture south of I-290, which unofficially divides the city into the two “Sides.”

Roughly one year later I became a “South Sider” and regularly went over the bridge drawn in panel one to visit my girlfriend at the time (now my wife). She lived only a few blocks from this warehouse!

Kate and Mike fishing flak vests out of the trunk of a car.

This panel was totally inspired by a famous scene from Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction.”

These aren’t exactly the armor vests used by the Chicago police, but I had a hard time tracking down an authentic source.

Mike’s comment is a reference to the “Sneak and Peek” searches authorized by legislation passed since 2001. I know I play a little fast and loose with the law in this story, but it frightens me that our government seems to be doing the same these days.

READ THE NEW SCENE HERE.

Need a translator, huh?

Need a translator, huh?

Part Two: Agitation continues today with the next scene.

“Heard you boys need your hands held.”

Cook County Hospital

This is actually the old Cook County Hospital. The John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital was built in the late nineties to replace it, but I stuck with the old building because I prefer the classic architecture. There was a debate whether to tear down the old structure before the city decided to renovate it.

I just think the old building has a ton of character, so I decided to use it instead.

READ THE NEW SCENE HERE.

We got a code eleven…

We got a code eleven…

Part Two: Agitation continues today with the next scene.

“Where ya think he’s goin’ in such a hurry?”

This is the north end of Lincoln Park, which stretches for miles along the shore of Lake Michigan all the way from North Avenue to the end of Lake Shore drive at Hollywood Avenue.
As with many American cities, Chicago still has a housing problem. There tend to be a lot of homeless people who sleep in the park, especially near Uptown between Lawrence and Wilson.

The story the witness tells on the final page actually happened to me one night. It was too weird an experience to not put into the comic.

READ THE NEW SCENE HERE.

Breaking the News

Breaking the News

Part Two: Agitation continues today with the next scene.

“Aren’t there some witnesses we need to interview?”

Most police work isn’t glamourous. It’s taking statements, finding evidence, and filing unending reports. And sometimes it means telling people the news that someone close to them is dead.

There really was a Dunkin’ Donuts across the street from this building at the time I drew this in 2002. My friends lived upstairs from me at the time, and we’d meet for breakfast there a few times week to chat about life and work before we got started to our work day.


READ THE NEW SCENE HERE.

Poor guy never had a chance…

Poor guy never had a chance…

Part Two: Agitation continues today with the next scene.

Kate and Mike arrive on the scene of a fresh murder, but are they prepared for what they’ll find?

Drawing the crime scenes in Paradigm Shift has always been a challenge, both technically and emotionally. When I first started to draw the story, I found a book called Death Scenes: A Homicide Detective’s Scrapbook which compiled crime scene photos from the 1920’s to the 1950’s from LA police detective Jack Huddleston. The photos are gristly, yet somehow sterile. Thankfully, they are all black and white, which lends an air of disconnection to everything. I leaned heavily on this resource to make the murder scenes in this story as plausible as possible.

The blood splatter over the body was originally created for the end of the first scene of Agitation. Instead of trying to do the splatter effect on the page itself, I covered the floor in newsprint and spattered watered-down ink on sheets of bristol board, Jackson Pollack-style. After the ink dried, I scanned everything and pulled the best splats and drips together to form the final image, here.

 

READ THE NEW SCENE HERE.

Early Riser…

Early Riser…

Paradigm Shift — Part Two: Agitation continues today with the next scene.

Awakened by an early morning phone call, Kate gets ready to investigate a second murder…

This scene is set in the Chicago neighborhood of Wrigleyville, just north of the friendly confines of Wrigley Field on the narrow, alley-like Dayton Street, just off of Belmont Ave. For those in the know, this is also the home of Ragstock, a go-to thrift shop for the young hipsters looking for street chic clothes at a rock-bottom price in the late 90’s and early 2000’s.

I love the moody urban feel of this part of town and decided it would be the perfect spot to set Kate’s apartment. Later on, those fire escapes will prove useful, too…

Dayton St. off of Belmont Ave.

Read the new scene here.

 

 

AGITATION is here

AGITATION is here

Paradigm Shift — Part Two: Agitation begins today!

Detectives Kate McAllister and Mike Stuart return to the streets of Chicago to hunt for a savage nocturnal killer, but are they searching for man or beast?

And does Kate know more about these grisly attacks than she realizes?

Their investigation may have to wait, though, because a new lead opens in an old case that forces them into a deadly showdown with a band of gunrunners.

“The lead characters are quickly endearing… a pleasant blend of Japanese-style design underlaid by American narrative.”

– NEWTYPE USA

“A wonderfully written and drawn police thriller that takes a sharp supernatural twist.”

– Marc Mason, Should it Be a Movie? www.moviepoopshoot.com

Paradigm Shift is the total package: a thrilling cop drama, a supernatural mystery, and a lovingly-drawn portrait of Chicago. Do not fail to read it!”

– Shaenon K. Garrity, creator of Narbonic and Skin Horse

The second book of Paradigm Shift debuted on the innovative and before-its-time subscription webcomics portal ModernTales.com in 2002. It picks up right where Part One: Equilibrium left off at its original home on dynamanga.net.

This first scene is set in the neighborhood where I used to live in Chicago. My old apartment building is in view right there in panel one—the second building to the left of the construction site. I took photos from a number of angles to capture the look of the block, including from the roof of my building.


Read it here.


Watch for the next scene on Monday, April 12th.

A new Paradigm Shift story is coming!

A new Paradigm Shift story is coming!

PARADIGM SHIFT—INSTINCT is coming!

I’m delighted to tell you that Paradigm Shift is coming back. I’m currently finishing up the script for Instinct, the next chapter of the PS saga, and I’ll be starting the artwork production for Issue #1 soon.

When we last left Kate and Mike, they were on the run and hiding in the hills. Now they must turn and face the secret agency that sponsored the experiment that turned Kate into the monster she is. Expect plenty of action, adventure, and mayhem to come!

Issue #1 will debut later this year after another Kickstarter. However, I’m also trying something new this time. I’m going to start up a Patreon to allow for early access and offer a full behind the scenes look at the process of the comic being made.

More details coming soon!