"No one ever told me the pathway to adult hood was paved with glass."
- Trey Monroe
Trey and Jalissa are your average couple, engaged and happy until trouble comes to paradise. Trey gets caught cheating on his girl Jalissa and what happens next can only be described as rowdy adventure of utter madness coupled with comedy, humor and a dash of romance. The Dog Years is a look through that small window we all go through in our mid twenties when we aren't quite settled and we haven't decided which path we are destined to take in life. The ups and downs of relationships, being in love and the influence of friends. Sit back, take a deep breath because these are the stories of my best years, my worst years....THE DOG YEARS.
"How often do we see this kind of story telling in comics? How often do we see stories about black relationships in this medium period? I wouldn't say often, I'd say not at all. Artist and writer Drayonis has captured lightining with a humorous (and often times over the top) candid review of what it is be young and dating - Doing the wrong things while fighting our way back to doing the right things. Don't be put off by scantly dressed women and colorful language, there's a story here that we all can relate too." -Corban jones
"I think it's great to see someone stepping up for the hip-hop generation, which has always been poorly represented in the comic arena. Good grief... How many superhero stories can be flipped and reworked over and over again. It's great to see something different for a change."
"There is some genuinely funny shit going on in each issue. The Dog Years touches on all aspects of life from college, work, life in general, the single life, committed relationships and everything else inbetween. You want substance along with your humor? Drayonis got that covered. You crave a lil' ignant shit tossed in with your jewels? Drayonis got you, fam! The thing about "The Dog Years" is that it not only impresses fans of the comic book medium but I've showed it people that don't give a goodamn about comic books (I do know people that fall into this category) and they are hooked on The Dog Years" -Dart Adams
AS far back as I can remember I've been drawing. My mom says I started around three years old, I'm not sure how accurate that is, but I do remember challenging my older brother (who's an artist by trade himself) to drawing contests on the floor of our little apartment when my parents and us first emigrated from the West Indies. We (my brother and I) drew all day and we drew all night. Whenever things weren't going my way, I would retreat to my little art desk in the corner and lose myself in my artwork. That was my escape from the raging world around me.
A few years ago, I found myself going though a few things, a rough patch (some would say) and I found myself drawing again, running back to that desk in the corner. Yes, I owned a business where drawing was part of the job requirement - but it wasn't the kind of art where I could truly express myself. I often dreamed as a kid (as every kid does) of landing the "big show" and working for Marvel comics - Drawing the X-men! YEAAAH!!! Of course that never happened, I got older and like most of us, "life happens". Had to work, to keep the lights on and eventually settled and got married. Forget those dreams right? Wrong.
A lot of my comic nerdy black friends were busy creating black super heros that often looked and were designed after white counterparts. I didn't want to do that. And frankly I was tired of the super hero genre all together. I wanted to do something different that I can relate to - something I knew lots about - and The Dog Years was born. Initially I had no idea if people would be interested in this type of story telling at all - Did people really want to read African-American comics about relationships or would they rather see a black version of Superman drawn again for the one-millionth time? To be honest, I really didn't give a damn whether they did or not, I just wanted to write and draw something for me, something I thought was funny and different. I figured most people would just pass it by right? Wrong again.
I was overwhelmed soon with how many people from across the globe, not just black folks but people from all kinds of backgrounds found the book entertaining. And not only did they like it, but they loved it! The demand for more books kept coming from all the emails I was getting and I finally decided to spend my cash and print our first volume The Dog Year #1 trade, we sold a few thousand dollars worth of books the first month even though the book was free to read online (shocking) and most of our traffic just came from word of mouth (later blogs and twitter). We continued to move books monthly with no distribution in stores and just online. Wow, WOW and WOW some more. The #1 email I get from readers is how they can relate to the characters and the storie lines - "The ups and downs of relationships" - Who knew almost everyone had been in one and everyone had a story to tell? What happens next? Who's fault is it? Who's right and who's wrong? How much is a person worth to you? Can you turn the tide around of the mistakes you've made? Can you your redeem yourself? How important are your friends during a break up? All those things people found in my book that they could connect to. It wasn't just about girls, guys and sex but life itself.
Anyhow, If you've stopped by to look at the train wreck, thanks. If you've NEVER read the book but like the art, thanks to you to. And thanks to the support of friends and fam on facebook and twitter for spreading the word and sending me emails on all my misspellings and typos LOL!