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February 2, 2010

Andi Ewington Excites with the New OGN “Forty-Five45”

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Written by: Andy
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The new OGN (Original Graphic Novel) by Com.x, Forty-Five45, hits shelves soon at select comic shops and here at ComicAttack.net we have an interview with the book’s writer, Andi Ewington. Andi gets into the plot of Forty-Five45 below, but something that is truly remarkable about this project and worth mentioning beforehand is that while the book may have only 1 writer, it has 45 different artists! The story is done interview-style as the main character speaks with 45 different superheroes whose stories are represented by 45 different artists. To further the uniqueness of the piece, each artist had only one full page to work with! The concept of Forty-Five45 is something totally fresh in the sequential market and I can’t wait to read the finished product, but for now this interview with Andi will have to hold us over!

COMIC ATTACK: What is Forty-Five45 all about?

ANDI EWINGTON: Forty-Five is a series of interviews, transcribed by a journalist called James Stanley. His wife is expecting their first child and they choose to forego the Super-S test (a test designed to determine if an unborn child will be a superhero or not). He decides to interview a whole spectrum of superheroes, of all ages and from all walks of life, in order to better prepare himself if his child is born with superpowers. During the interviews he discovers a sinister organisation called ‘XoDOS’ who has an agenda which could impact on his life and the life of his unborn child. Each character interview in Forty-Five has been interpreted by a different industry artist; Charlie Adlard, Liam Sharp, John Higgins, Jock, Lee Garbett, Sean Philips, Boo Cook, Frazer Irving, Dan Brereton, Fiona Staples, Rufus Dayglo to name a few.

CA: I have never seen anything quite like Forty-Five45. What inspired this idea and why did you choose comics as the medium to tell this story?

AE: The inspiration really came from the 12-week scan my wife had for our first child. I was in awe of the whole experience, and I began to think, “Wouldn’t it be cool if my baby was born with a superpower?”. I know it’s not the usual sort of thing you first think of, but then I don’t think I’m a particularly normal guy! The reason I chose comics is two-fold; firstly, as a graphic designer, there’s something appealing to me about savouring lots of cool artwork; secondly, I’m fortunate to have an excellent comic-lover/mentor in Eddie Deighton of Com.x. It’s really Eddie’s love of comics that influenced me to work in the comic format.

CA: Tell us about what the process was like selecting the 45 different artists to work on the piece.

AE: In all honesty, I was a bit of a newbie to the comic world. Eddie Deighton educated me and opened my eyes to the fantastic artists and writers in the industry. We began by approaching several well-known guys that Com.x knew, like Charlie Adlard, John Higgins, Jock, and Liam Sharp. All of them listened to the pitch and almost immediately jumped on board. Once I had this nucleus of talent I found it easier to approach other artists. Some came from recommendations from the artists themselves, other through reputation alone, and a few we either met at Comic conventions or through websites like Deviantart.com. The whole experience was a massive learning curve and I’m pleased that I can hold my own now when it comes to understanding the industry!

CA: Were there any artists who you were unable to bring onboard that you had really hoped to be a part of the project?

Art by Matt Timson

AE: Of course, but the guys were on exclusives or committed to other long-term projects. What I will say is that everyone I did approach who subsequently turned me down (and there were some HUGE names!) were all very professional, polite and encouraging about the project.

CA: Why did you choose Com.X as the publisher for Forty-Five45 as opposed to other indie companies?

AE: As you may know, Com.x is owned by Eddie Deighton, and Ben Shahrabani. I work for Eddie as his Creative Director at An.x (a London-based graphic design company). I knew the quality of Com.x’s work and their reputation for great books, so I was fortunate that I could pitch something directly to Eddie over a coffee! It’s not as incestuous and easy as it sounds – I had to work twice as hard to prove to Eddie and Ben that Forty-Five was a concept worth publishing.

CA: This is your debut sequential work; what else have you written professionally in your career?

AE: Nothing that’s been published. I have a fantasy comedy novel I have written with my best friend, Dennis Johnson. It’s a 250,000 word beast that took three years to complete. Who knows? Maybe it’s time for it to rise phoenix-like from the filing cabinet…

CA: How was it for you to make the transition to the comic book medium as a writer?

AE: I don’t feel it’s quite right of me to start thinking of myself as a writer, per se, as I fit my writing around my day job. I think I could only answer that question if I gave it up and started writing full-time! I had a lot of help from Eddie with regards to the formatting, so it was a relatively pleasant experience for me. Taxing, but pleasant!

Art by Lee Carter

CA: Are you reading any comics that are currently being published?

AE: I’ve got The Sentry sitting on my desk at work at the moment. That’s the next one on my ‘To Do’ reading list.

CA: Who are your all time favorite comic book characters?

AE: I’m going to be a little different with my answer here. I’m choosing Calvin and Hobbes. I absolutely love the humour, you see, because I was ‘Calvin’ in my youth!

CA: Tell us a little about Andi Ewington the man; where you’re from, your education, what makes you tick, etc., etc.

AE: I had a great upbringing. My childhood was one, big adventure. School was rudimentary, I was a slightly-above average student that spent most of his time chasing girls and slaying dragons (I dated a few, come to think of it). I was fortunate enough to be guided by a sage old teacher towards college and graphic design. Further studying ensued, until two years later I managed to secure myself a junior role in an advertising agency. Computer games replaced dragons and I wasted my free time playing computer games. Eventually I came to my senses and realised that I could be doing so much more, so I began writing, more as a hobby than anything. My design career blossomed until my path led me to my current role as Creative Director of An.x. With Eddie as the perfect conduit for my writing ideas, it was only a matter of time before I presented a publishable idea to him. The rest is soon to be written history.

Art by Andie Tong

CA: When you’re not working on Forty-Five45, how do you like to spend your time?

AE: Spending time with my family, or if I’m really lucky, getting an hour to blast away on the XB360 (some habits die hard).

CA: According to your Facebook page, you’re a roleplayer and a big Dungeons and Dragons fan…care to share a little about your RP experiences?

AE: Blimey, where do I begin? Dennis Johnson, who worked on the edit of the book, was (and still is) my Dungeon Master; I’ve had too many 2am finishes than I care to remember. I’ve even partaken in a ‘live’ Dungeons and Dragons event, something I must do again one day! Though recently, I’ve seldom had the chance to do any dungeon-trawling. Saying that, there is a Talisman board game sitting on the book shelf staring at me that I’m really close to starting again.

CA: When can people expect to see Forty-Five45 in stores?

AE: 19th of January it will finally be delivered to Diamond.

CA: What do you hope readers will take away from Forty-Five45?

AE: A feeling that they have just experienced something different, something that is grounded a little more in our reality. I also wanted to get across the vulnerability we as parents find ourselves in. Having a child is both heart-warming and fearful.

CA: After this project hits the shelves, what’s next for you in and outside the world of comics?

AE: I’m actually putting to bed the final pages of a new project co-written with Eddie Deighton. We had such a blast on the edit of Forty-Five that we just had to write something together. It’ll be a 40-page one shot comic (in the traditional sense), which picks up one of the interviews from the ‘Forty-Five’ universe. I’m also  currently in the process of planning a similar third comic.

CA: Thanks for talking with us Andi!

Stay tuned to ComicAttack.net for more news on Forty-Five45 and reviews of Com.x’s books!

Andy Liegl
andy@comicattack.net

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10 Comments



  1. Really can NOT wait for this book!



  2. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by Butwin: Andi Ewington Excites with the New OGN “Forty-Five45” – https://comicattack.net/2010/02/andiewingtoninterview/


  3. billy

    Sounds cool. Very nice artwork.



  4. Cheers guys – the art is indeed very cool – plus the extra concept art in the back too, (the writing ain’t bad either)… 😛



  5. Thanks for stopping by Andi!! Can’t wait to read your work!!



  6. Shouldn’t be too long – I hear on the grapevine that the eagle has landed Stateside… 🙂


  7. Eli

    I love that art!



  8. […] sure you’ve heard the buzz by now about Com.x’s new OGN Forty-Five45 (but if not click here) which features a soon to be father interviewing 45 different superheroes and asking them various […]



  9. […] up I’d be kicking myself in the face for not doing so.  I didn’t care that this was Andi Ewington’s first comic venture, nor that I knew nothing of  Com.X prior to what I read on this site. What I […]



  10. […] not going to lie folks, I think Andi Ewington’s OGN (Original Graphic Novel) Forty-Five45 is one of the best books to come out this year! If you […]



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