Stephen Groves -- "Steve" to his friends -- was an extremely talented artist and writer. Imaginative and creative, he had dozen if not hundreds of stories he wanted to tell and projects he wanted to share. Of these, only a very small handful every made their way into the public.
"The Grove" was a short-lived newspaper comic strip that appeared in a local newspaper, and then, even more briefly as a webcomic. Starring Puck, the raccoon that may have been Steve's favorite creation, The Grove still maintains a small following of fans.
Similarly, "The Dumb Guys" was a webcomic that came and went a few times, always struggling to establish a consistent update schedule. Although it didn't last long as a short-format comic, Steve had begun work with a collaborator for a book-length Dumb Guys story.
Beyond these projects, there were many others: Jeremy and the Struggit was a kids book Steve wrote and illustrated; Little Leo was a book for kids about the adventures of a young Leonardo da Vinci; The Winds of Balmorgan was a book-length fantasy epic graphic novel, and on and on.
Despite his brilliant ideas and incredible artistic talents, Steve was plagued by self-doubt. The sites he set up for his webcomics were often shut down so that he could tweak or redesign or try to improve the art just a little bit more. Those close to Steve encouraged him, often for years, to complete a project and let it go -- to little or no avail.
This past summer, Steve was diagnosed with cancer. He died in the hospital of his hometown on October 19, 2017, surrounded by his family.
With the permission and support of his family, this Kickstarter aims to bring Steve's art from many of his unfinished and incomplete projects to a wider audience. His family and friends want to share Steve's art as a way to celebrate his life -- bringing his work to a wider audience to admire and enjoy.
EDIT 1: It was pointed out to me that people probably want to see a lot more of Steve's work. Therefore, for the remainder of the campaign, every few days, I will update with some new images that may or may not be included in the final book. (However, if I post one that you absolutely believe must be included, let me know. I'm open to suggestions.)
EDIT 2: More art samples!
The purpose of this Kickstarter is to raise the necessary funds to have a high-quality hardcover book featuring Steve's work professionally designed and printed.
To do less would do disservice to his talent.
How will the funds be used? The biggest costs are the printing of the book, postage, and design costs. I have spent no small amount of time contacting different firms to get quotes, comparing costs, researching quality, and so on. The costs indicated here represent the best value for money, as based on this research.
The postage cost projection is based on an estimate using information from Canada Post and completed Kickstarter projects.
Following the successful completion of this campaign, there will be about 8 weeks of design work to be done. I estimate the time to get the book prepared, proofed, and printed to be another 8 weeks. Shipping will begin as soon as the books are received. In total, I hope to have all product shipped by the end of September.
Updates will be communicated regularly through Kickstarter.
Risks and challenges
Some potential risks and challenges facing this project:
There may be risk of the family of Stephen withdrawing its support for this project.
This is highly unlikely, as the family is currently very supportive of this book. I have been provided with two of Steve's hard drives, and a small portion of the existing hand-drawn art. Additionally, I am keeping the family in the loop at every stage of the project. In short, they are as excited about seeing the finished project as the rest of us.
The volume of work to sort through may be overwhelming.
Although this is a real challenge, it is not an insurmountable one. In fact, it's a good problem to have. Steve left us so much quality work that we will be able to find the best of it to include in the book. Time has been budgeted to allow for the sorting and scanning of selected items, as well as the design and printing process.
One challenge we have very little control over is the shipping costs. We have looked into all available options and what we have included here in the project represents the best rates we can find using the best options available.
Other risks may include the loss or theft of packages once they enter the postal system. There is very little we can do to protect against this, but we will do everything in our power to get you your book and/or other goodies!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)