Welcome to the archive of the John Barleycorn blog, produced by Howard Gayton and Rex Van Ryn during the process of creating their graphic novel John Barleycorn Must Die. As part of that process, you'll find discussions of magic, of creativity, and 'Around the Table' discussions with a range of internationally known artists, writers and film makers. The graphic novel was printed in a limited edition, so if you managed to get one, good for you! Although this project is over now, we're leaving this blog online as an archive and as a snap shot in time.

Monday, 13 May 2013

Vali goes to Bristol Comic Con!

This weekend, we went to Bristol Comic Con. Our first outing to promote the book! We were accompanied by Jason Ofengland dressed up as the shamanic Earth God, Vali, from the John Barleycorn Must Die graphic novel.

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Vali flexes his muscles.

He seemed to get on well with other heroes....

Vali agrees to join forces with the caped crusader....



...and Wonder Woman!


...but then flirted for a while with the Dark Side.


From L to R: Storm Trooper, Earth God & Sith Lord.


Here he is at the photo call with Rex, who was, as usual, camera shy!





Wherever he went, Vali seemed to be a hit amongst various female attendees. Rex couldn't understand why, though assumed it must something to do with the magical spirals that Rex had drawn on Vali's face. Myself, Howard, thinks it more likely the long blond hair, toned body and bulging muscles!


Vali and admiring fan No:1


Vali and admiring fan No: 95



Vali and admiring fans Nos: 1580 & 1581


At the end of the day, Jason Ofengland seemed to have become so associated with the role, that he wandered off into the crowd, convinced that he really was Vali. 


Vali wanders off into the crowd.

We haven't seen him since. If you see him wandering around your part of the world, please let us know.

Friday, 10 May 2013

The Barleycorn Boys Are Back in Town!


Guess who just got back today? Howard and Rex, those wild eyed boys who’ve been away. 
We’ve been off the grid for a bit, wrestling with our creative muses. Literally in Rex’s case - he’s muddy and bruised!

Now spring has sprung, and we’re back in the virtual world, and we have a trinity of delights to share:

We’re now posting our complete graphic novel, John Barleycorn Must Die, online at a page a day on our new John Barleycorn blog. If you haven’t read it yet, now’s your chance.


We also have a John Barleycorn Tumblr site, where we’ll be posting art work from the comic every day. (Just art, no text.) If you have a Tumblr account, please come follow us! 

The new Tumblr: http://jbmdcomic.tumblr.com/ 

And third, Rex now has a Facebook page (god help us!), called Rex Van Ryn Presents. He’ll be discussing all things comics related (artists who started in comics, celebrities who are comic enthusiasts, etc.), and providing links to what is happening in the comics world at the moment, particularly independent comics. It’s all just getting started, so please come join in the conversation (and keep an eye on Rex!)


Please join us on any or all these sites -- and if you know anyone interested in comics, would you please help us boost the signal?

It’s good to be back!

Howard & Rex