Issue 25, May 2018:
Table of contents
Funny situation: we decided to discuss Internet comics in a print publication. As it turns out,
Internet comics, also known as web comics or online comics, are quite a problematic and ambiguous
phenomenon. Difficulties start right at the get-go, i.e. with the definition, as Jerzy Szyłak’s
article opening this issue clearly demonstrates. What is Internet comics and what isn’t?
When has it all begun? Another challenge is posed by the vastness of this artistic domain:
how can researchers ever hope to collect, characterize and catalog everything that is published online?
For these reasons, we are not limiting ourselves to academic analyses; we also talk and ask questions.
Most of all – with artists. When, how and why did they start publishing online? What is their definition
of webcomics? How do they see its future? We also ask these questions to researchers who focus on this
form of comics. And we don’t just talk about online comics – we contrast it with “classic” comics printed
on paper because this is the only way to fully appreciate the innovations (or lack thereof) of comics on
the Internet. Finally, we want to understand the commercial and artistic future of print comics in the
age of “cloud” and social media.
We did not aim to propose simple answers. In the fast-moving world of the Internet, this collection of
articles and interviews can at best be seen as a snapshot, limited out of necessity, but hopefully
complete enough to inspire.
We hope you will enjoy this issue of ‟Zeszyty Komiksowe”,
Michał Błażejczyk and Michał Traczyk
Table of Contents
Design: Dennis Wojda
Cover art: melon
A Couple of Notes on Internet Comics
Starting from a polemic with Urszula Pawlicka,
Jerzy Szyłak proposes his own view
on the issue of a webcomic as well as on the
attitude of its authors to the paper comic
books, from which – despite the use of a new
medium – they are unable to cut themselves
off completely, because of thinking about
the graphic narration in a traditional way.
Szyłak points out that the emergence of
new ways of publishing is not tantamount
to the genre evolvement, but only to the
facilitations which derive from the Internet,
like elimination of the editor’s and critic’s
traditional instances. Still there remains
a difficulty with a webcomic definition, as
not everything that is called like that by
its authors, should be named that way.
The Ostensible Weight of Success
Crash Course in Drawing Internet Comics
Polish Webcomics Not Only on Polish Internet
The article presents an overview of the
Polish webcomics landscape of recent
years: main authors, popular formats and
genres, publishing platforms, publication
languages, and the question of moving from
publishing on-line to publishing in print.
Epitaph for a Certain Phenomenon
In 2004, Arturb Wabik published an
anthology of something new and exciting:
webcomics. The album created a mild
controversy on the comics scene, but from
the perspective of time it turned out to be
a great way of documenting an ephemeral
I Was Drawing in Paint, with a Mouse
Agata „Endo” Nowicka was one of the
trailblazers of webcomics in Poland. Now
a successful freelance illustrator („The New
Yorker”, „New York Times”, „Wall Street Journal”, …),
she talks about the beginnings of her career, practical aspects
of creating comics, popularity of comics in
the US, and feminist representations of sex
The Problem of Digital Comics
The author offers an interesting cultural
perspective on digital comics. He talks
about limited ownership of digital comics;
limited ways of reading and relating to them
in general; the lack of thrill of building
a collection. In the end, there can be no true
fandom without physical comics and all
the cultural phenomena that are associated
with them. For this reason, the raise in
popularity of digital comics shouldn’t be
seen as a threat to print comics because
the two are reinforcing each other.
Foxes and Immunizations
Light at the End of the Tunnel
Comics Heritage in a Digital World
This article uses the example of comics
to show how technological innovation
influences social and cultural practices. It
presents a short history of comics on-line
and evaluates perspectives for digital
distribution and monetization platforms,
especially in Poland. Finally, it tries to answer
questions about benefits and challenges
related to webcomics in all its variety.
Fox’s Affairs. The City
The Internet Is Too Big
Jakub „Dem” Dębski is one of the most
popular Polish authors of webcomics. This
interview focuses on two broad topics: his
work (his first webcomics; creative process;
cooperation with other artists; self-publishing;
other forms of creative expression;
plans for the future) and more general
topics such as the evolution of the Polish
webcomics scene, the relationship between
webcomics and comics etc.
Freedom Is Key
Sarah Andersen talks about her webcomics,
webcomics in general (e.g about differences
between this delivery model and standard
publishing) and her inspirations and plans.
Which Witch? Miss N.
Post-Revolutionary Landscapes. Polish Internet Comics After the Remix Revolution
The article presents the history of Internet
comics in Poland over the past 20 years from
the perspective of „revolutions” proposed
by Scott McCloud in Reinventing Comics.
McCloud talked about changes of the
comics medium caused by its relocation to
a computer screen. This article focuses on
the revolution related to the social circulation
of comics and its democratization due
to the popularity of remix platforms, and in
particular on the impact of the platform komixxy.pl on the webcomics scene in Poland.
Labrador and Chocolate
Possum and Aggression
Cyber-Archeology and Death of Memes – About Comics on Komixx
This article presents the web portal Komixxy.pl. It was created in 2010 and it allows
users to create their own webcomics. The
author believes that the portal’s popularity
stems from the fact that works published
thereon function online as memes. She
uses definitions of the term „meme” that are
recognized in literature as well as memes’
common characteristics (e.g. susceptibility
to transformations, formulaic character, use
of generators, easiness of graphic editing,
egalitarianism, following established creative
structures) to show that webcomics are simply
another variation of the Internet meme.
Devil Is in the Detail. About the Polish Translation of McCloud yet Again
This article is the continuation of the
debate between Jakub Jankowski and
Michał Traczyk concerning the Polish
translation of McCloud’s Understanding Comics. The Invisible Art.
Subject Heading: Comics
Michał Traczyk, deputy editor-in-chief
and publisher of „Zeszyty Komiksowe”,
interviews Rafał Wójcik, originator and first
person responsible for the comics collection
at the University Library in Poznań.
They talk about difficult beginnings of the
collection; about the the crucial role of legal
obligation to deposit a copy of every work
published in print in certain university libraries;
and about the dynamic development, in
spite of some obstacles, of the collection over
the past 10 years.
Comics Now! A Word About the Comics Exibition in the National Museum in Krakow
The Untamed Hunter of Adventure
Grandma Irena’s Adventures
What Might Be the Purpos of a Univers-al Triangle?
List of Comics Published by Polish Authors