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A few months ago we told you about Stela, a new line of mobile based comics. The companyhas strong comics-makers behind it – editor Jim Gibbons and creative director Ryan Yount, and many talented people signed up to create original content, including Irene Koh, Stuart Moore, Brian Wood, Andrea Mutti and many many more. And it all goes live tomorrow, February 25th.

But how many more people have been signed up? Well, if you’ve been following the hints on social media, a LOT of people:

https://pizza-party.tumblr.com/post/139556026651/dig-this-short-demo-of-the-stela-readstela-app

With Ronald Wimberly, Jen Bartel, Arielle Jovellanos, Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer and so many more fresh talent on board, this is definitely one of the most notable launches of 2016. With all the evidence in hand we approach Stela to get the scoop, and they responded with this preview of yet another series.

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BREAKER is an upcoming Stela series by Mariah Huehner (W), and Kelly and Nichole Matthews (A).

Living a quiet life in SoCal isn’t easy for Verity Monroe. Perfect waves, cold beers, and her best friend Eva are all she really wants.That she has to get chained up every month in order to keep her monster within seems like a decent compromise. Until torn bodies start literally piling up on the doorstep of her beachfront home, and she’s forced into solving a murderous, centuries old plot involving cults, prophecy, and every kind of supernatural creature imaginable.

Stela is a mobile native platform, meaning the comics are deisgned expressively to be read on phones. (It is similarly to Line Webtoon, which is enormously popular in Korea and getting traction here in the US.) We were able to get some info from the BREAKER team on working in the newish medium:

Mariah Huehner:

“BREAKER is a comic I’ve wanted to do for five years but could never quite find the right fit for. When Jim Gibbons contacted me about Stela, I jumped to work with him again, and he got really excited about the concept behind BREAKER. I saw Kelly and Nichole’s work for TOIL AND TROUBLE and fell in love. We got super lucky they loved the concept of BREAKER and could work it into their schedules. They are INCREDIBLE and I’m not being hyperbolic when I say that every time I get new pages, I’m thrilled. They just “get” this story and have amazing character work to bring it to life.

Working with Stela has been really fun! The format obviously presents certain limitations, but it’s forced us to get in there and tell what’s most important in the story. I personally love having to work with different formats even when they’re a little scary at first. You end up with something special with that kind of challenge and that’s definitely true here. Plus everyone has been incredibly supportive at Stela, which is vital in a publisher. It makes you feel like your work is really appreciated and that makes you work harder and better.

I can’t wait for everyone to see BREAKER. Comics are collaborative by nature and that’s definitely true on this project. Everyone’s brought real enthusiasm and artistry to this story and I just feel really lucky we’re getting to tell it.”

And Kelly and Nichole Matthews:

“Working with Stela has been absolutely incredible! It’s always awesome when everyone on board is excited just to be there. Jim has been really great with answering our questions and keeping everyone up to date with information as the app has gotten closer to launch. Just from the conversation’s we’ve had, you can tell everyone at Stela cares a lot about the creators and making sure we’re comfortable with the whole process. It really means a lot to have that feeling of support right from the get go.

As artists, coming in from the ground floor on a project and getting to create the character concepts and environments for the first time really had us chomping at the bit for when we could finally start the comic itself. Mariah had a very clear idea of what she wanted the main duo to look like, so our job ended up being incredibly easy bringing them to life.

To be honest we were hesitant taking on the project because we’d never drawn anything with phones in mind! When you think of “comics” there’s a pretty standard idea of what that’s going to look like; Stela’s unique platform meant we had to learn a new visual language. Once we got into it, however, it was actually very relaxing! We found that scrolling pages and a digital format are much more forgiving with the space we have to tell the story. If we wanted to change the pacing in a regular comic it’d be impossible unless it was already planned out because of page limits, but with BREAKER we can add a few extra “panels” to help with the flow. It’s become a favorite style of ours that we want to use in some personal comics of our own when we get some free time!”

And here’s an exclusive preview: bear in mind it’s best viewed on a phone but it still looks sharp on a computer if that’s how you’re reading it.

BREAKER_1_PREVIEW BREAKER_2_PREVIEW

 

BREAKER is debuting later this year. The Stela app launches tomorrow with the titles initially announced:

ROME WEST
Brian Wood, Justin Giampaoli (W)
Andrea Mutti (A)
Vladamir Popov (C)

TEACH
Stuart Moore (W)
Greg Scott (A)

INHERITANCE
Ryan Yount (W)
Kidman Chan, Yumiki Hong (A)

OUT WITH A BANG
Stuart Moore (W)
Tony Talbert, John Heebink, Chris Marrinan (A)
Marissa Louise (C)

AFRINA AND THE GLASS COFFIN
Irene Koh (W/A)

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