I first stumbled upon Toner #06 by Jonathan Way$hak, an undiscovered treasure, at APE, The Alternative Press Expo in San Francisco. APE is an incredible convention/show for indie comics from the worst to the best. When I first saw Toner issue #06, I immediately thought of incredible creators like Sam Keith (who Way$hak has apparently collaborated with) and BuyIndieComics.com friend, Mulele. I immediately bought the book and added it to my stack of things I bought at the convention that I should get around to reading soon.
So, a few months later, I’m digging through my stack looking for something interesting to read and there it is, rediscovered treasure. The art is wonderful and frenetic with an emphasis on line texture and shape. The art is Art. And it was the art that made me want to read it. Having read it, the story and talented storytelling is what will bring me back. Good stuff. The arc of the issue is probably too strange or twisted for mainstream audiences but at the same time, movies like Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Go have been at least relatively successful, right? For me though, it was the creator’s pushing of the medium that made me truly appreciate this book. Specifically, the lettering and representation of a punk concert are stand-out high points for this book.
I recently read an article where the writer’s premise was that there needed to be more punk rock DIY in indie comics. The article kind of came off as if DIY was the only way to do comics, by yourself. I’m pretty dead-set against there only being one way to do comics and for me, the collaborative process is sometimes more important than the final product. But there would of course be no rule if there were not an exception to that rule – because he makes indie comics on his own. And that’s what we get with Toner issue 06 by Jonathan Way$hak.
I look forward to buying and reading the rest of the books in this series.