Butterfly began as part of The Daily Grind Iron Man Challenge in 2005. I had agreed to join the contest before even thinking up a concept for a webcomic. About a week before the Grind began, I had an idea about sidekicks. A sidekick’s name and identity are always less threatening than those of his mentor. A robin is a less threatening creature than a bat, but both can fly. So, I started to wonder what kind of identity a sidekick of a sidekick would have. A bat is scarier than a bird, and a bird is scarier than a…butterfly!
I never intended for Butterfly to be an ongoing series, but the initial gag of having a “sidekick’s sidekick” just took on a life of its own, and the character struck a chord with the early fans. The original series (available here) ran from February to October in 2005.
During that time, AdHouse Books approached me about contributing a story to the upcoming Project: Superior spinoff, Superior Showcase. In December 2005, Butterfly returned after with a new style and a new site–this one! Superior Showcase #1 hit stores nationally in April 2006, finally revealing the secret story of how Butterfly met Birdie (and a few other super-secrets that’ll finally be presented online in the revived series). My good friend John Campbell co-wrote the tale.
Since then, Butterfly’s met plenty of new heroes and villains, and tried to be a friend to them all. I held an contest to design an “alternate universe” version of Butterfly, which received some incredible entries. Butterfly also visited MoCCA a few years ago, and made an extensive photo report.
Eventually, I started running the strips in full color, which took a bit more time, but definitely felt right for the characters. I made a short process demo on how I made the strips here.
To my never-ending appreciation, the amazing Jemma Salume took over the art duties at Butterfly for a while during a time the strip otherwise might’ve ended. Most recently, I’ve returned to Butterfly with the intention of telling a complete story that can be enjoyed both as a continuation of the strip and as a stand-alone work. The new series starts here.