New Jersey comic publisher Hic & Hoc have an arsenal of BCGF releases that look almost too enticing to pass up on. Amongst them is UK cartoonist Philippa Rice’s LOOKING OUT. If you’re unfamiliar with her work, there may a good chance you have seen one her incredibly detailed and lovely dioramas at a recent comics show. Beyond merely creating the successful webcomic MY CARDBOARD LIFE, Philippa is a multitalented craftswoman: her blog is littered with her hand made creations and oftentimes she constructs 3D counterparts for her comics that are equally hilarious as they are gut-wrenchingly cute. Using yarn and sometimes even products from everyday life, Philippia experiments beyond the bounds of paper limitation, using different materials as means to storytelling.
One of her newest comics, LOOKING OUT, promises a style differing from her distinctive work in MY CARDBOARD LIFE. Philippa is no stranger to testing out unique forms of narrative; her history has her dabbling in animation, videogames, and bringing her characters to life through diorama or crocheted doll. Her comics, including LOOKING OUT, usually have an air of the fantastical set against a sci-fi and other-wordly landscape. She does an extremely good job at creating a story immersed in a new universe while at the same time having implications of things that are very familiar to our time.
LOOKING OUT is indeed set in a futuristic space world, where the protagonist goes on her own intergalactic adventure, taking moments to check in with friends all the while reporting back on her exploration. Despite being printed in black and white, LOOKING OUT’s landscapes are extremely detailed and eye-catching, and Philippa masterfully injects her planets with precise geometric shapes that make the story a flowing and nimble read. Despite the rather simple depiction of the characters, the lush backgrounds and imaginative ‘alien’ findings are a great contrast to each other.
Hic & Hoc will have copies of the quirky space comic LOOKING OUT available at BCGF. Although Philippa herself will not be in attendance (and alas nor her lovable dioramas), it’s definitely worth taking a look at.