written by roby duncan illustrated by lewis lain
updates every monday and thursday

Happy 4th oF July to American Readers! Happy Single Panel Thursday to ALL!


We hope this Thursday finds you doing well and enjoying yourself, whatever you are doing!

Today’s Single Panel is a doozy! We are finally seeing, for the first time, the coalescing of animus into what we will henceforth refer to as a Spirit Form. Sindri is doing what he can here to draw a metaphysical line… or, in the words of the great Walter Sobchek:“I’m talking about drawing a line in the sand, Dude. Across this line, you DO NOT… Also, Dude, chinaman is not the preferred nomenclature.”
We’ll get more into Spirits Forms, and the sorts of power the Totems can manifest when they pour themselves fully into it, later. For now, we just want to leave you with the concept that… not every intrusion needs to be met with force, and that when it does, there are all kinds of different force.

Enjoy your day, and the art!

See you Monday!

Single Panel Monday GO!!!

When I sent Lewis the write up for this Single Panel, I was pretty excited: it showed the Totems hanging out some beat downs, it was brutally violent, and it allowed for the illustration of some more of the metaphysical principles of “magical rules” by which the story functions.
As excited as I thought I was when I sent it out, when I saw the black-and-white come back, showing me what Lewis had imagined, I was blown away. There’s something magical about seeing raw ideas bound into ink and form, especially when they’re your raw ideas.

In terms of the Single Panel itself, we’re getting a look at the differences between the creatures we’ve been colloquially referring to as “nightmares” and the Totems. To the waking mind’s eyes (at least most of them), the nightmares simply don’t exist. For the Totems, the equation is a little more complicated. The Totems are governed by a mixture of metaphysical principles, tradition, and instinct. We’ll get more into that as the story goes along, but as always, I like to include a little of the “why” with the visuals, so it all continues to make at least a little sense.

That’s all for now.
We’ll see you again with another Single Panel on Thursday!

Welcome to Installment 3!!!

Greetings, Totems Fans!

As always, we hope this Installment Release Thursday finds you doing well, enjoying your day, and hungry for more story.
Installment 3 takes us deeper into the main storyline of the comic, and gives us a clear sense of the stakes for our characters.

The cover for Installment 3 was inspired by that fine literary center for complete stories of mystery and detection: “Detective Weekly“.
In this particular case, issue #106 , The Poultry Farm Murder, was the rough basis for our cover design.

This Installment of Smaller Totems is exciting for me, personally, because we’re finally getting into the thick of the story that initially inspired the comic to begin with. What happens when you’re faced with a real world problem, but your intuition and everything you know tells you that there is an irrational element to the problem? How do you balance your efforts? What do you believe? How do you know when you’ve gone crazy or not?

The last few panels notwithstanding, of course. 🙂

See you on Monday for another Single Panel!

new release for 07.08.13

sir marlon

Our next fan totem comes to us from Jonas Grey. His name is “Sir Marlon” and this telekinetic bunny is not one to mess-with. With trusty split-blade and mind-guided shield, Marlon can make short-work of even the nastiest nightmares.

Thank you to Jonas for sharing his very own smaller totem with us.
You can find more info on Sir Marlon in our Fan Totem gallery here.

See you on Thursday for our next exciting multi-page installment!

new release for 07.04.13!

independence day for the united states! i’m going to apply bratwurst and sangria to my stomach in celebration, but before i do i offer a few thoughts on today’s release.

today we give those pesky nightmares a break. don’t get me wrong, i like it when they get pulled limb-from-limb (bastards), but it’s good to know sindri is not nearly so quick to do that very thing. sometimes, you have to draw a line in the sand before you thrown a necessary punch and luckily for these one-eyed-janitors that is sindri’s choice. even still, poor ian sleeps restlessly.

sidenote: these nightmares may be my personal favs thus far.

see you on monday for our next exciting release! a new fantotem will join the ranks!

new release for 07.01.13!

this is, by far, my favorite single panel to date.

a solid battle is sadly interrupted. my boy, mr.bear, tearing shit-up. ol’polar rat, clearly about to sink some teeth and claws in a troublesome pest. missing eyeballs. what more could one want. clearly, the boys are in control–bear’s ripping one apart, but still hauling the top part back for more destruction. sleep tight, ian. you got serious protectors.

points of interest: a nightmare when caught in-sight, disappears from view. a totem, when caught in-sight, appears as a toy.

linework 101: linework is ‘resonant energy.’ resonant energy is everywhere. it is generated by humans. it is stored in non-conductive material. it is drawn and expended to create. the totems know how to use this energy manifest an animus–in fact, the totems understand how to harness this energy in a multitude of ways.

see you next thursday for our next exciting release!

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