Nicolas C. Grey is an English born, Cambodian based artist, comic maker and founder of underground comic anthology ‘Headache Comix.’ With Nic’s writing and artistic aesthetic being a mix of the chaotic and messy underground comics of the 1960’s and 70’s; and the more refined line-work and clear detail of the indie comics of the 1980’s and 90’s. Imbued with existential angst, humour, ennui and general a distrust of authority.

Born in 1968; art, comics and creation have all been constant forces in an eventual life that has seen Nic leave home when only 16; establish successful, much loved and now closed comic anthology ‘Watermelon Comic’ in his late teens; have a fun and creative 20s; before succumbing to drug addiction in his early 30s. A lifechanging event which also saw Nic engage in petty crime, before eventually spending time in prison.
After his release, Nic continued in his drug use for a while, and went through periods of homelessness. Where he survived by begging and drawing-for-hire for strangers; before kicking the habit and fathering a child in his late 30s. With Nic eventually following the mother of his child to Cambodia; where he now lives, so that he could co-parent.

In Cambodia Nic currently works full time as an artist and continues to create comics, self directed art, and work on ‘Headache Comix’ – An anthology he founded during his late 40s, in 2017, with his friend and designer Dennis Lindfors. Which to date has included works from noted luminaries such as Robert Crumb, Dennis Worden, Bramwell Slingsby, Robert Rubbish, Jason Atomic & Lisa Carver to name but a few.
With ‘Headache’ being firmly cemented in, and lovingly continuing the tradition of, the lowbrow underground comix anthology. Akin to other works such as ‘Zap Comix’ (1960’s to 2014), ‘Slow Death’ (1970 to 1992′), and ‘Weirdo’ (1980’s to 1990s’.)

The cover to issue 1 of ‘Headache Comix,’ from 2017.
Art by Nic.

In addition to his editing & self-directed activites, Nic is also an extensive collaborator. Having worked with people such as James Farley (on ‘This Dog Barking: The Strange Story of UG Krishnamurti’); Mukunda Rao (on ‘Advaya’); and is currently collaborating on the graphic novel, ‘Death of a Pornographer’ with writer Vincent Alexander; to name but a few.

Wanting to get to know him better, we sent Nic some questions to answer over email.
Take a dive into his world, below…

Getting Acquainted

Name + D.O.B?

Nicolas Christian grey

City, State and Country you currently call home?

Phum Kdol, Battambang, Cambodia.

City, State and Country you’re from?

London, England.

Some art by Nic.

Please describe some memories – such as art, drugs, music, friendships, comics, adventures, study, romance, politics, work, religion, crime… anything really – from the stages of your life noted below:

I have a pretty bad biographical memory.
I have no idea how other people experience this, but I see memories like little movies playing in the head, sometimes, out of context, sometimes, like they are filmed with an old super 8 camera, sometimes in vivid detail. I don’t really put that much faith in them, I just watch them when they occur.
At times I have ruminated on them, but they often seem too ethereal to do so.
I often wonder about these images I see, these moments, where are they? As soon as they are lived they are slipping away, almost like they never really existed at all.

This non liner kind of thinking is why i have never really thought of doing anything autobiographical, because it so messy.

Some art by Nic.

* Your childhood:

I think it was pretty uneventful, ordinary, happy even, or at least I don’t remember it being unhappy. I have snap shots here and there.

I remember seeing all these dollar bills on a washing line, lying underneath it and watching them sway in the wind.
I remember a playing a game called suicide teds, where I would throw soft toys out the window.
I remember I always would draw on the floor, underneath the foot stall my father used.
I remember seeing ghosts at a graveyard.
I remember my old brother and his friends doing the Ouija board in the attic with his friends and me suddenly falling through the floor.
I remember feeling like, at night, I would leave my body and float upwards, or my consciousness would become bigger than my head and fill the room and somehow not be in my head anymore.
I remember reading my brothers’ 2000 AD comics.
I remember lying in cornfields looking at the sky.
I remember the long walk to school.
I remember just being happy to be left in my own little world.
I remember long walks in the English countryside with my grandparents.
I remember being confused by strangers, not understanding my peers at school. Being humiliated because I couldn’t spell, the noise, the bright lights.

Nic as a kid.

* Your teenage years:

My teenage years. That’s when things got weird, I guess. Maybe no more dramatic than average, I don’t know, but it was a very weird time. I guess it’s a strange time for a lot of people.
For me, I loved the cocoon of childhood. I was lucky like that. Sure, I, in theory wanted the freedom that being an adult implied, but when I was facing it, it was a different story.
I hadn’t done well at school.
I hated it.
It was loud, noisy, confusing.
I couldn’t wait to leave at 16 – I probably regret that now a little, sometimes at least.
It wasn’t a good environment. The social hierarchy really confused me.

It was the 80s, I guess. AIDS, Margaret Thatcher, bad music.
I looked back to the 60s, I was kinda a hippy probably without putting in the effort to be anything in particular. But I liked that music, the books, the whole thing, in a very abstracted way. I was pretty uncool at the time, but I never knew what was in and what was out, I just did my own thing.
I always wore black because it was easier than deciding what to wear each day, I had long hair that I was too lazy to comb so because dreadlocks, not the nice kind, more like the homeless kind, clumps of marred hair at random places.

Before I had left school I had started working at an art’s cinema, so, just carried on doing that. I would paint the billboards that advertised the upcoming films, back when that was a thing people did.
I started doing a lot of drugs. LSD. A lot, every week, sometimes multiple times a week, for years. I was very enthusiastic. Until, of course, I lost my mind.

I had a group of friends, fellow dropouts. Weirdos.
It was probably around this time that my friend Ben Heath and I did the first comic, Watermelon Comic. Back then, it was printed with printing plates. I do remember the first place we took it to had agreed, then read it, then refused to print it.
We gave away a package of rolling papers.
It was crudely drawn.
Bens’ girlfriend had died in a car accident, and really it was something to take his mind of that.

The cover to issue 1 of ‘Watermelon Comic.’
Founded by Nic & Ben “Jammin” Heath in 1987.

I had moved out of home by 16. A series of shared houses, bedsits, always having to move for reasons I can’t recall.
I met a lot of strange people working at that cinema. My friends and I kind of ran it for a while as the owners lived in Oxford. We openly smoked weed upstairs (then the smoking area, at times was like a drug den.) It was pretty chaotic.

I have always loved movies. I seek refuge in them. That little beam of light, gets lost in another world.
I remember I once brought a VHS of the King of Comedy before you could really buy them commercially, I paid 60 quid for it or something.
Anyway, I got an education of sorts in art films, as I saw them all, multiple times. In someways it was great, in others, not.

It was in my teens that I really became to think there was something wrong with me. I definitely couldn’t fit in or be a person with the same ease that most people seemed to. I do remember going to the doctor for the first time around 16, I think he said I was depressed and gave me some pills.
It would be the first notation in a medical file that I would later discover would become the size of 2 phone books.

Nic in his teens.

* Your 20s:

I can’t really delineate between teenage years and 20s, as it’s all a bit of a blur. I guess if I really sat down and spent a few weeks on it I could maybe piece it all together, who knows…

One of my fondest memories of my 20s was spending a summer in a field in Wiltshire. This was when crop circles had first started appearing. A friend was doing a DIY documentary about them, and a few of use tagged along.
It was really interesting and bizarre and funny. People from all over the world had come there. You even had NASA people there. You had middle aged people in camper vans with elaborate homemade equipment to talk to aliens.
My friends and I would patrol the friends at night, seeing if we could see a crop circle being made. On the night we took LSD, we did see a huge spaceship and balls of light descending, but, well, that turned out to be just a hallucination.
In the end it came out it was 2 friends, Doug and Dave, that made them, with nothing but a blank of wood and string.

But, like addiction is prone to do, and I guess I’m just one of those people that are prone to it, my drug use was getting out of hand. One way to not notice the decline is to hang out with drug addicts and drug dealers, but it was undeniable that my life was slowly rolling downwards.
We had somehow, who knows how, had keep up doing Watermelon Comic. By the time the rave scene hit the UK, it fit right in. Ben was much more outgoing and in there, so, it became kinda popular in that small world.
I hated rave music. To this day it gives me panic attacks. I hate crowds, so, while everyone else was really forming their identity around this new “love“ (i.e. MDMA ) culture, I felt very alienated from it, while at the same time, being sort of right in the middle of it. It was strange, almost the same feeling of being back in school, not knowing understanding my peers, feeling strangely alienated from them.

It must of been around then I discovered heroin. I must of been depressed at the time. Another failed relationship probably.
Years before I remember taking a Valium, and, thinking, this was an amazing experience…
I have a lot of sensory problems. I can’t tune out any background noise, or background anything, it’s like I see and hear everything and can’t just focus on what is needed and tune out the rest. Valium helped me with that, for the first time ever. But back then, I was a snob about drugs. I saw downers as antithetical to stuff like LSD, that was mind expanding, alcohol, downers, I saw as mind numbing. So, I didn’t do Valium again for years.
But when I first got into heroin, there it was again. I was in the safe cocoon. I knew it was not a great way to deal with life, but it fixed the immediate problems, and, towards the end of my 20s, things were not looking so great. I had lost my job by then, instead doing odd jobs for drug dealers and criminals, shop lifting, living in a series of increasingly grim bedsits.

* Your 30s:

When did I end up getting 2 years in prison? Late 20s, early 30s? I can’t remember.
I had started doing a few cat burglaries out of desperation, a lame excuse, I know. I kinda hated myself for it, I felt terrible, I would leave notes apologizing, probably adding insult to injury.
I was pretty bad at it and only after a few times I was caught. Broad daylight, coming out a house, a bag full of consumer items, wearing a suit I stole from the closet. I confessed there and then.
The police interview must of been pretty easy as I just told them everything they wanted to know. My court appointed lawyer was so bad the judge mixed them up for the prosecution.
I got 2 years and served 1 full year.

I had gotten a diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder, so was given anti psychotics, which didn’t really do anything because it was a misdiagnosis. But it landed me for a very short time at Broadmoor, where they kept the likes of Ian Brady and the Yorkshire Ripper, but then a lower category prison on the Isle of Wight.
I was in a unit for people with mental illness, which was smaller than the regular units, but, as the name suggests, a bit crazy. There was a guy there who was so scared of being released that he would randomly stab someone when his release date came near, I think his original offense had been shoplifting, but has managed to successfully prolong his sentence to years and years.
A lot of seriously ill people where in there, they really should of been in hospital or something, but instead, we were all in this unit, 1 hour out in the yard if we were lucky. Most of the time in a tiny drafty cell.
In the end, I grew to like it in there, yes, it wasn’t ideal, but, I had gotten a cell to myself. If I really strained, I could see a tree out my cell window. I got to observe that tree through all the seasons. I liked being off drugs. I drew. I didn’t get bored. But it ended, they gave me something like 50 quid and that was it, back out into the world.

I started using again the day I got out.

I became a beggar. I sat on the street corner, sometimes with a sign that said I can draw anything for spare change. I got a few requests, all of them completely nuts, and old gay guys really perverted sexual fantasies, some guy who wanted to be drawn with a lot of hot girls and drugs. People are nuts, everywhere you look.
But, I saw a lot of kindness. I would talk to lonely old people who just wanted someone to listen.
There were the crazies I did my best to avoid, I had become quite skilled at that in prison.

Somewhere along the line I had gotten married. I wouldn’t call it out of love really, it was something, a person to use with, company.

Nic in his 30s.

* Your 40s:

So, I guess I cleaned up in my late 30s. well, around 34 or 35, I guess.
At the time I was living with my wife, by the end we had separate rooms. A Jamaican crack head, her boyfriend (?) was also living there. It was basically a crack house, it looked like one. My room was out of control, for some reason I had become a kind of hoarder, stuff I would find on the street, I could barely fit in my small room.

It was by accident that I ended up at a narcotics anonymous meeting. I lived in east London, not the trendy bit, the shit bit people don’t go to unless they live there.
Even though I had given up weed years ago, for some reason I had gone to west London to score a big bag of weed. West London is nice, it’s a mix, but there are some real posh parts. A friend of the weed dealer took me to this meeting in a very posh part of west London. It was completely surreal, there were celebrities, people with jobs! Totally out of my realm of experience. People that I had begun to think only lived in tv land or advertising billboards.
Anyway, there they were, and all talking about how they had fucked their lives up with drugs, and were now clean. Not, just drinking and popping pills clean, but totally sober. I had forgotten that was even possible.
It’s strange, I forgot when I had forgotten that and just accepted my fate as a junkie, that I would die that way and that’s just the way it was.
Anyhow, there, and then I gave up talking illegal drugs. I was on a boat load of legal ones, but weened myself of them slowly over the course of a few months, going to meetings every day in west London, coming back to sleep in the crack house with the Jamaican guy one minute offering me crack, the next saying I was working for the government and had bugged his phone and wrapped tin foil around his head.

Obviously, my living conditions were not ideal. But I was enmeshed in the system, mental health workers making sure I took my pills, drug workers making sure I took my methadone, so, in the end, I just had to walk away. Just become homeless and stop going to any appointments. Become a non-person.
I’m sure they didn’t care, one less person to deal with, I guess.

So, I ended up working out jobs, renting a room. I had a relationship that resulted in the birth of my daughter, for the first years I was very involved, I would change diapers, read her stories at bedtime. I loved it.
Some men or people don’t really enjoy babies, I really like them, they are amazing, I felt I learned a lot from her.
The relationship didn’t last long and her mother worked abroad a lot. We had moved to India and I was told I had to go back to the UK, so, I did. It was tough, as once again I had no money or place to live, but sorted myself out. It gradually became clear they were not coming back, and by this time were living in Cambodia, so, with $200 in my pocket, I moved there, got a cheap room, and started making my money as a full-time artist, while getting to see my daughter regularly.

There is a lot I’m leaving out, there were some much tougher times and sadder stories, that it seems unnecessary to get into.
There are some beautiful memories as well. Seeing my daughter grow up. Seeing the Himalayas for the first time with her, me covered in her vomit because of the winding roads.
There is a lot of sadness in these times as well, but I stayed clean, managed to survive, make a living for myself.

I am not adventurous by nature, it is by accident, or, just circumstances, that I have ended up traveling so much and seeing so much. The motivation was always just to be there for my daughter, she her grow up.
I have failed a lot in my life, I didn’t want to fail her.
Maybe I did, but I really tried not to.

Years before, during one of my periods of homelessness, I had someone print out all the books by UG Krishnamurti. I always loved to read, even though I’m chronically dyslexic, and it’s not that easy for me. I have a book fetish of sorts; I like to collect them.
The UG books have no copyright on them, and, I liked them. I always thought they would make a good graphic novel. He is, in the very loose sense, an Indian philosopher, so, that can be very dry material. I personally like philosophy, have always been interested in it since I was a teenager, everything from the classics to the mythical to the occult.
What I liked about the UG story is that it was strange, quite obscure, and, sort of funny in a strange way.
I was under confident in my abilities at the time to write it myself, so, asked my good friend James to help, and, he was drawn to the subject as much as me. What we assumed would be an easy task turned into years of research, that had us travel to India, meeting people that knew him, really trying to get it correct.
These were good times; I meet some really nice and interesting people. It was all very surreal, meeting everyone from Bollywood film directors, to Indian politicians, writers and academics, and, just ordinary people.
We put the book together in Cambodia, James had come over to do it and ended up working and living here for years. Working with him was one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had. And, I’m proud of the book we did. It never really found its market, it kinda didn’t seem to hit the comics market, or the philosophy market, it was just an oddity, floating around by itself, but I guess that is kinda fitting considering what the book is about.

Nic (in foreground) in his 40s, with some friends, doing research for his comic on UG Krishnamurti.

* Your 50s so far:

My daughter moved around a lot, so much so at some point I decided to make my life in Cambodia, as I couldn’t chase her around the globe. So, I’ve been here for 19 years or so. I like it. I’m not rich of course, but I’ve always managed to get by. Being in your 50s, still drawing comic books, it’s odd, it seems too late to do anything else to be honest there is nothing else I can do.

Cambodia is beautiful, I have a good life, I am in a relationship with a beautiful person, inside and out.
It’s been in my 50s with her that I have started, maybe once a year or less, doing some LSD again, which has been interesting.

I like where I live, I can kinda pretend I’m not in the modern world. I shop at the local market, I cook, we grow some food. Cambodia is loose, in a lot of ways. Covid happened, that was weird of course, but we survived.
Watching the world slowly loose it’s mind is interesting, but, I’ve kinda always been inclined to think that the world is a pretty chaotic place, really, I’m surprised we haven’t blown ourselves up by accident or design yet, so, I guess, most of the time, I’m grateful for the days that come and go.
I’m grateful for the people that I have in my life, there aren’t many of them, but they mean a lot to me. It’s been a tough life with some incredibly beautiful moments. I get bad days, but, despite everything, if I die today, I’m ok with that, and if I live to 100, I’m ok with that.
I just don’t want to hurt anyone. I want to try to be kind, and live my life quietly, like that.

I never really had a plan, stuff just happened. I never thought I was some hot shot artist and the world needed to see my work, for a long time, showing my work was just an afterthought.
Having to make at least a little money from it has forced me to be more public than I’m probably naturally inclined to be. I see my art as just a weird compulsion I have. It’s a retreat from a world I don’t understand. It’s me trying to express what it means to myself. I didn’t ever really Intend for other people to be involved.

So, I know these memories are all kinda jumbled up, but like I said, I find it hard to remember things in a linear fashion.
So, please excuse the mess.

A recent photo of Nic, showing off a stange occult object.

Personal motto(s)?

I’m tired.

What role did toys play in your childhood?

I can’t really remember anything specifically. I had a blanket I carried around like Linus from the Snoopy comics!

I liked toys, I still like toys! But I don’t remember them having a major role or anything like that.

Some art by Nic.

Cambodia Questions

Can you please share with us your usual day to day life as an expat in Cambodia?
Such as work, shopping, politics, interacting with the local people and culture… etc.

There is not much to tell really. I work in a tiny studio at night, so, I start at about 10 pm and go to bed at about 6am.

There is a local market nearby, I buy vegetables, cook stuff. I have a few friends, not many, a handful, some local, some foreigners that have also been here for a long time. I pretty much keep myself to myself.
I like my neighbours.

I generally like the Cambodian people, but it probably helps that I’m terrible at learning languages so can barely understand them!

Politics is off the table here, no one really talks about it, can get you in trouble. I talk with my friend about it, but nothing that I would share.
I live cheap, I go for walks. My partner can ride a motorcycle (I can’t) so, we go for trips into the countryside.
We have a dog we rescued.
I live in the country but very close to town, it’s very beautiful, old buildings, a river, lots of jungle, farm land.

What changes have you seen in Cambodia during the 15 or so years you have been living in the country?

It’s changed quite a bit. Not where I am right now so much, but the coast and the city.
It’s funny, one day there were no coffee shops, then, suddenly, there are all over the place.
No mini marts, then suddenly, everywhere. Then, in the city, high rise apartments. It’s development, what can you do? A lot of Chinese money.
It’s still possible to escape that, which I like, kinda pretend it’s not happening!

The cover to issue 1 of Nic’s comic ‘This Robot Dreaming.’

Do you plan on spending the rest of your life in Cambodia?
Why? / Why not?

I guess so. I don’t really like to look backwards, I find it mostly depressing, or look forward, I find it gives me unnecessary anxiety.

I’m happy mostly.
The future is unpredictable. I wish it wasn’t. I never planned to be here, I don’t plan to leave, but, unfortunately unexpected things happen, I kinda hope they don’t so much anymore, that I can just not do anything anymore, but, who knows.

Where do you see Cambodia heading over the next 5, 10 and 20 years?

I have no idea. If I had to guess, they will go with whatever China goes, and where that is, I don’t know. It’s always going to be a little behind its neighbors, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, but it could capitalize on that, as it has a very unique charm and culture.

I wish Cambodia the best, really, more than anywhere else, I feel this place is my home.

Creativity Questions

When and why did you first become interested in art, comics and everything creative?
… and any pivotal creative moments / influences?

My father is an extremely talented artist. He worked as a commercial artist all his life, so, I have been surrounded by art since I was born. And, I’ve drawn compulsively ever since I could hold a pencil.
My style hasn’t really changed all that much, I recently saw some stuff I did when I was about 11, I can still see themes there that I am still doing.
Like I said before I think, I never saw my art as something great that the world needs, but almost as a personal obsession, I’ve even viewed it as some sort of medical condition, like people who have hypergraphia, and can’t stop writing.

I’ve always loved comics as objects. So, always wanted to make my own. When I was younger, it was a good time for comic books, there was all these weird comics like Idiot-Land by Doug Allen, Stickboy by Dennis Worden, Trailer Trash by Roy Tompkins, and, of course, Weirdo Comics.
And, then, when photocopying became accessible, zines, made by anybody, I loved them all. I loved them more than paintings hanging in the Tate Gallery. I liked that they were cheap, anyone could buy one, there was little pretence about the whole thing.
I guess that left a lifelong impression.

My main interest has always been film, but I couldn’t imagine myself ever getting into that world. I made a few when I was young with a super 8 camera, but, really, making movies involves a lot of people. I’m not great with people. With a pen and paper, it’s like I can make my own movies, and, it’s cheap.

In all my years of addiction, I never stopped drawing. I’ve always drawn.
When I came to Cambodia, I did have to do a lot of drawings that were not comic books, because I needed to make money. It was fine, I enjoy that as well, but my real passion has always been comics. It’s silly because it’s a lot more work for much less material reward, but, it’s like a compulsion.

So, my influences have often been outside of art, in my interest in philosophy, or movies, and I just have integrated whatever my current obsessions are into the form of comic books.

I have enjoyed working with others. I have a graphic novel being published next year, written by Vincent Alexander, called Death of a Pornographer. It’s another oddity, I’m not sure where it will fit.
Vincent worked for many years in soho, London (also where my father was born) he worked in the red-light district, in sex shops, all but disappeared now. He would tell these stories sometimes, I thought they were great, funny, sad, I thought they would make a great book. In the end, he ended up writing something quite special, not a regular graphic novel story, almost like a poem, or a play, something definitely very unique. The writer Michel Faber kindly wrote a wonderful forward for it.

A page from upcoming graphic novel, ‘Death of a Pornographer.’
Written by Vincent Alexander & featuring art by Nic.

I’m currently drawing a book about Maxon Crumb, with a friend of his, Jo Archibald. Another interesting story, interesting guy, and, another collaboration.

I’m also working on a graphic novel I have written, Everything is fine in Blunderland but I’m doing it between other things. Graphic novels take a long time to do, and, one has to eat while this is happening, so, it’s a juggling act to get to do things that I can sell or get funding, while working on things that are not funded.

A page from Nic’s upcoming graphic novel, ‘Everything is Fine in Blunderland.’

If you had to explain your creative endeavours to some recently crash-landed aliens… What would you tell them?

I try to amuse my fellow creatures by making marks on bits of paper so they feed me.

Who are some of your favorite comic makers, artists, writers, filmmakers and musicians?
…and what is it about their works that so inspire and move you?

I think I have already written about a few, but I can give you a few more concrete examples.
Dennis Worden did a comic book called Stickboy, that was a kinda big revelation to me, as there is quite a hidden philosophical angle to the comic, but it’s also funny and weird, so, I thought, that’s a thing that can be done well in comic form.

Robert Crumb did a story in weirdo about the life of the writer Philip K Dick, it was beautifully drawn, and, though it was a story I knew well from books, it kinda worked better in comic form, so, again, I thought, ok, that’s a thing that comics can do.

As for movies, writers, music, there are a lot, it’s hard to make a different link to how they inspire me.

Please explain your work with Headache Comix for those at home who may be unaware about it all…

Headache comix was really born out of me being frustrated because there are no comic shops in Cambodia, and I missed them, I also wanted to get back into doing comics. The art market here was kinda drying up for me a little. A lot more Cambodian artists have grown since I first arrived, so, I also thought, maybe I should start to think about a small revenue stream outside of Cambodia, not that it’s ever made any real money.
So, I started at No. O, and just reached out to some people and tried to get enough content to do an issue. My good friend Dennis, who had done all the design work for the book This Dog Barking was here, so, he did all the computer stuff, as I’m really lousy at that.
The first few issues were just sold here, but when Dennis moved back to Sweden, he took over being editor, and we carried on. It was always a mix of pretty unknown people, and, more well known people. I was in communication with Robert Crumb at the time and he kindly gave me permission to print stuff from his sketchbooks, his napkin drawings.
Dennis Worden was very supportive, always has been.

The last issue was great, but a bit of a logistical nightmare, but we are figuring stuff out so it can carry on.
I like it, the blend of the new and the old. I don’t know, it’s a bit of oddity. For whatever reason, it seems everything I do never really neatly fits in anywhere. I guess, if art is a reflection of its creator, that would could be a reason.

If people wanted to check out your comics and art, work with you or buy some of your wares – Where should they visit and how should they get in touch?

I have a website, it links to my social media, and has a store, free comics to read, a blog I update from time to time, so, there I guess.

Odds & Ends

If you could live in any place, during any historical era – Where and when would that be?
…and why would you choose that time and place?

I think any where I choose would also suck just in a slightly different manner than it does now, so, I have no idea.

I like objects from the 1900s, 1930s, etc. – They were beautifully made, but if I lived then, would I work in a factory for 15 hours a day and die at 35? I don’t know.
Or live in the time before we grew food? Hunter gathers? Maybe it would be nice but also, probably a lot of hard work, so, I don’t know.
The future? That will probably suck in very very weird ways, would be interesting to look around I guess.
But, I’m not going to commit.

What does “God” mean to you?

Not much.
Religious people, spiritual people, they sort of annoy me, I think I’m a bit bias against that kinda stuff, even though I’m well read on all the major religions and their traditions. And, I do really like religious places, like old churches or wats or mosques or temples, I think they are some of the most beautiful buildings in the world.
Even Buddhist monks annoy me. I don’t know what it is. I guess I’m of the view that no one has the monopoly on this kinda stuff. I may be incorrect and bias but I get this impression that religious people and spiritual people kinda look down on other people in a very weird way. I’m sure, say, the Dali Lama may have a very good understanding about certain things, but I don’t see him as any more special than the person who works at the grocery store.

I’ll die one of these days, and, when I do, there wouldn’t be any less stuff in the universe, there wouldn’t be the universe minus a Nic, if you know what I mean, so, whatever I am will still be around in some form. It wouldn’t be in the form of me now writing this, but where was I in the past? In the stories I have been telling? They are nowhere, they are gone.
So, I don’t know about this stuff, I don’t think I can know, I think we can know certain things, figure out how stuff works, create things, but we are not really able to separate ourselves from everything else, which would have to be done, in order to explain it, the separation is both real and false at the same time. I experience it as real so I can do things, it’s just what being a human or any being is, but it’s just functional, so, it’s a mystery to me and that’s fine with me.

The cover to ‘This Dog Barking: The Strange Story of UG Krishnamurti.’
Written by James Farley and featuring art by Nic. Published in 2017.

What are the top 3 items you own?
… and what is it about each of them that you so love?

No. 1
This copy of Misery Loves Comedy, by Ivan Brunetti.
It was given to me a good friend, I had someone missed his comic books when they came out, and it is now probably my favorite book.

No. 2,
I have 2 magnetic coins and a magnetic ring. I kinda twiddle around with them. I don’t know why but find it very comforting, but I do, so, for this reason, it’s an important thing I own that I get kinda anxious if I lose them.

No. 3.
My daughters baby teeth, kept in a plastic vial.

Please describe your last dream in detail…

I’m not great at remembering my dreams. I do, but never really retain the memory. Because I have been doing this book on Maxon Crumb, I did have a dream I was sitting on a bench with Robert crumb, and he was telling me all this personal childhood stuff, really pouring his heart out.
I felt kinda awkward, like, why am I here, but I listened.

I have had a recurring dream I’m in a used bookstore, or find a used bookstore, and have found this incredible stash of great rare comics. I have no idea what any of this means!

Some art by Nic depicting one of his recent dreams.

In a fight between the following British pop culture icons: Rupert Bear (the comic strip character) Vs Judge Dredd (the comic book character) – Who would win?
…and why would they be victorious?
[Please draw the battle in all its violent beauty!]

The end result of the fight between Judge Dredd & Rupert Bear.
Art by Nic.

Of everything you have done so far, what would you most like to be remembered for?

I hope those I love, or those people I have known, don’t hate me.
I don’t really care if everything gets forgotten.


An illustration by Nic.

All images supplied by Nic or sourced online.