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Where to Find Comics in the UK and the State of Comic Book Retail in the US


I love comics, you love comics… Actually I don’t think I know anyone who doesn’t love comics. But do you know where your local comic book store is? Recently I came across a map of the UK and Eire showing the locations of numerous comic book retailers. I’m pretty sure there are more out there than are shown on the map, but it does a good job of listing the ones that are on there.

There’s also an international comic shop map, but all it has is the name of the store without the website link and contact information.

While on the subject of comics, David Harper published a really interesting read on The State of Comic Book Retail. It includes some awesome infographics and does a really good job of summarising the pros and cons of owning or running a comic shop. I’m not going to tell you or reiterate what is says – go and read it!

Photo by Tom Morris of our favourite London comic shop Gosh! Comics, although Orbital Comics does come in, in a very close second.

The art of Alé Mercado and his sketchbook


A few weeks ago Alé Mercado uploaded a page from his sketch book that reminded me what a fantastic artist he was. Seeing a professional illustrator’s sketchbook is always a pleasure and the page featuring Alé’s Sea Creature/Evil Merman is no exception to this rule.

This isn’t the first time we’ve noticed Alé Mercado’s illustration, a couple of years ago he also took part in Mail Me Art with the piece below and we were very happy he did.


As you can see, Alé’s work has a very nice quality to it and he isn’t afraid to tackle subjects and compositions that may send less established illustrators running for the hills. Below is a personal piece of his titled Happy St. Jordi. Great use of colour.


If you’re interested in seeing more of Alé’s work, you can check out his portfolio website at or you can follow him on Facebook.

Build a Freelance Illustration Business with Salli S. Swindell and Nate Padavick


Are you a designer, illustrator or creative doodler? Have you ever wondered how you could turn your talents into a business? This three-day online workshop will help you create a plan for leveraging your creativity into a successful freelance business. – Salli Swindell

This course is run by Sally S. Swindell and Nate Padavick co-founders of the awesome They Draw and Cook. The course will give you an inside look at how two artists have built a successful design & illustration studio by fostering a community of artists that empower each other to grow their businesses.

  • Leverage what is unique about your style to attract more clients
  • Build a creative online portfolio that will have clients coming to you
  • Pitch and land deals with name brand clients
  • Package and price your services to build a sustainable business

You can find out more and register for the course at

Kittens, Badgers and Skulls for Saltopus Apparel


There are four new t-shirt designs over on Saltopus Apparel from illustrators we really love at the LCS. They’ve done a brilliant job and the actual t-shirts are an awesome quality too, even if we do say so ourselves.

The Killer Kitten women’s cut tee was designed Jesse Schaller and is the first of Saltopus’ girly collection. Graffiti artist SPZero76 created the gang of futurists badgers for the Raygun Space Badgers tee, we really love those badgers! The third design is from David Habben with the last being a combination of Brian Allen’s logo and Michael Hacker’s skulls.


In case you were wondering, Saltopus Apparel is an LCS business and we’re always on the look out for new talent to bring new designs to life for the brand. We find most of our illustrators at, so get onboard if you’d like to work for Saltopus designing awesome t-shirts.

If you love illustration and think the t-shirt are a bit of alright, head over to and pick one up! They ship internationally and the postage is reasonable, but if you’re UK based you can get free postage on everything until Monday with the coupon code SUMMERLOVE. All sales will help Saltopus grow, which means they can hire more illustrators, and you’ll be supporting The Little Chimp Society with every purchase you make, win-win. :)

The Baltimore Academy of Illustration


This is the art school we wish we’d been able to attend!

The Baltimore Academy of Illustration is an unaccredited, private institution with one goal in mind: to teach artists who want to be illustrators how to become illustrators. Our hands-on approach and small classes allow us to tailor our courses to meet each student’s needs. Unlike traditional art schools, the Baltimore Academy of Illustration focuses specifically on illustration—learning the art while also understanding the needs and requirements of the profession.

One of the guys who was partly responsible for setting up this new school is friend of the LCS Alex Fine. Alex, Greg Houston and Scott Fuqua will be running the academy and also teaching there! Obviously if you’re an aspiring illustrator, sign up for a course. But if you’re a seasoned pro and you want to show a bit of support for this new educational centre, there’s a fundraiser you can donate to. We’re really looking forward to seeing what sort of talent this new enterprise churns out and we wish them the best of luck!

WMC 6 at the Allen Theatre in Cleveland, Ohio


Weapons of Mass Creation Festival is coming to the prestigious Allen Theatre (7-9th August). It’s the largest performing arts centre in the nation (outside of NYC), they will be providing opportunities for attendees to grow and challenge themselves at every turn.

WMC Fest tickets now on sale!

Highlights from WMC 5

Randy Gallegos: Level Up @ Krab Jab Studio, Seattle WA


September 12th – October 3rd
Opening Reception: Saturday, Sept. 12th, 6-9pm
Artist Talk at 7:30pm

I am super excited to announce this Solo Exhibition. Krab Jab Studio is an exciting working studio and exhibit space, that I had the privilege of showing at a few years ago as part of a group show on role-playing game art. I visited Seattle for the opening and wrote about it here. With the help of the indefatigable and talented Julie Baroh, we are putting together a show I’m very excited about. I haven’t hung a show this large in ever–the nearest was my Guest of Honor stint at LunaCon in 2014. In a sense, my recent show in NYC was a smaller dry run for how to manage and make sense of a show that hangs art of disparate subject matter in a cohesive way.

Randy Gallegos

You can find out more on Randy Gallegos’ blog.

The Future is Now / Are you a Little Chimp?


Now that the LCS is free from being a news syndication site we’ll be having a small website redesign to refocus our public image and to give a better indication of our future direction. We’re still very much about art and illustration, but we’re going to be more focused on the projects and events we run, and the community we’re all part of.

We want to reach out the all the illustrators who feel they’re part of the Little Chimp Society and ask them what they want from us. Do you want more events, do you want products, do you want more articles about the industry? Can you contribute or offer your services?

If you have any thoughts on the LCS or just want to say hello, email Darren at

Image by David M. Buisán for Rocket Magazine from 2010. Check out more of his work at

The Little Chimp says “No More”

Thank you to everyone who’s submitted news to the LCS over the years, but we’re reclaiming the site and community, and no longer accepting public submissions. There’s no need to worry, we’re not going anywhere. It’s just the LCS has changed and it’s about time our website caught up with us. Onwards and upwards!