After considering the time and energy I can budget to ongoing art projects, and the ebb and flow of my own motivation, I have come to a conclusion.
The current plan is to indefinitely suspend comic pages after the current queue runs its course. (The current chapter, Whale Watching, will finish and a few pages of the next interlude will go up.)
When I dove into making Parhelion at the start of 2016, I had a general sense that webcomics were an enormous undertaking, but now I’m not sure I have the time and drive to see it through as a fully-rendered comic. I have the general plot structure mapped out to the end, and I really want to release scripts, sketches, and story notes to convey my vision for it as much as possible. There are plenty of arcs and set pieces that I would love to show, but I can’t promise that I’d have the means to fully render them as comic pages. (Especially the backstory of Kiefer-161’s rebellion, where Peter’s incendiary anarchist ancestor has to team up with an exiled prince.)
It doesn’t help that Parhelion is made in Flash CS4, a depreciated decade-old program that dates back to my short-lived middle school dreams of animation. I’ve been dragging my feet on learning digital painting and Photoshop-style interfaces for years, and while I still love the style I’ve developed within Flash, I would like to branch out more.
In the coming weeks, I’ll transition my Patreon page to being a general hub for my art projects, and hopefully hash out some kind of post schedule.
Every day, I am blown away by the reader response to Parhelion, and so happy that this weird indulgent project I made resonated with this many people. Even in the first pages, with awkward mouse-drawn art and a digressive story, readers saw potential in it, and I am eternally grateful. In addition to laying out the structure of the final chapters, I plan on making more art within the setting- continuing Hector and Onom, drawing more zlotl variants, and so on.
Parhelion taught me so much about making art on a consistent schedule, the visual language of comics, ongoing storytelling, reader feedback, pacing, shading, speech-bubble placement, composition, strategic use of color, and ultimately when to know my limits. It’s bittersweet, I know, but it’s the best for everyone.
I also have every intention of working more with Parhelion’s themes in new contexts– alien sociology and government structure, moral imperatives that are impossible but no less necessary, weird queer narratives, and more.
Thank you all so, so much for bearing with me, and now I’ll salve my soul by drawing some weird alien politicians, untethered to any story.