What is Jumpkick?

Jumpkick is an all ages gag a day comic strip about two brothers (RJ and Angel Miller) who parents enroll them in their cousins martial arts academy, named Renaissance Martial Arts Training Center in Detroit, Michigan. The boys interact with their cousins, classmates, instructors and meet new friends. The instructors at the training center help the students learn self-control, self-defense, self-respect and improve their self-confidence. I also wanted to talk about the relationships between the parents and their children and the instructors and the students.


How often does the strip update?

The strip updates Monday, Wednesday and Fridays.


How come the site doesn’t update every day?

 I have a full-time job, I teach kickboxing and I teach martial arts classes. Plus I think less is more. Growing up I read the comic strips only on Sundays. I think if I would have read them every day I might have burned out from constantly reading them. Plus I want to be able to offer other things on the site like a blog, a video blog, fit tips, and recipes. I have to be focused on how I manage my time and I don’t want to overdo it. Plus I want to make sure that the strips I put out are quality. I really believe in quality over quantity. I also want to have time to create, write and draw other comics and cartoon projects.


Who created Jumpkick?

My name is Eugene R. Plowden II. I am a second degree black belt and have been training in martial arts since 1988. I also practice jiu jitsu and did some MMA training. I have been a martial arts instructor since 1991. I have taught martial arts in various locations throughout the Metro-Detroit area.  I have been drawing cartoons and comics since I was a child.


How do you make Jumpkick?

I create Jumpkick with traditional pencil, ink and Bristol board. I scan the image into manga studio to do lettering, word balloons, more inking and add color.


Are you a trained artist?

No I am not a trained artist. In high school I attended a comic book workshop, and I did some painting in my cousin’s art class for a couple of months. As a child I drew cartoons all day and I created my own characters. Growing up I wanted to become an artist for DC or Marvel. During my 12th grade year I became fascinated with the music business and I focused my attention on becoming a music producer. I took a 17 year break from drawing and cartooning and I had some mild success in the music and entertainment industry. I have recently met a comic/cartooning coach and he is helping me improve my art skills. Overtime the art in the strip will improve and my work will get more detailed. I am very patient and confident that I can get my art to look the way that I want.


Where did the idea of Jumpkick come from?

I originally created a comic strip that was loosely based on myself, my friends and are life. There are so many comics out like that I wasn’t sure I would stand out. So after having a conversation with my brother I took characters that I created for a children’s story book and put them into a martial arts class and the ideas just started flowing.


 Are you ever going to put out a printed collection?

I plan to but that depends on the reception that I get from the comic. If the demand is there then I will. A lot of webcomics take the strips that they post online and collect them in a graphic novel style book and sell them. I am interested in that but I am also interested in creating a new adventure for the characters if I do it in book form.


Will you create t-shirts and merchandise?

I plan on it but just like the books, I have to make sure the demand is there before I invest in creating merchandise.


Do you plan on creating any other comics?

Yes I do. I have two action/adventure graphic novels I am developing, I have drama webcomic I am developing and I have a sci-fi graphic novel I want to create.


Why did you put your characters in Detroit?

I am from Detroit. I want to put a spot light on my city. With Jumpkick I want to highlight the positive things that go on in the Metro-Detroit area. We have all types of festivals, parades, and events here that get overlooked. This city is overshadowed by negativity, crime and corruption and I want to show the world the brighter side of Detroit. During the rough winters we have the Winter Blast, and the North American International Auto Show. In the summers we have the festivals at Hart Plaza, we have Arts Beats and Eats in Royal Oak and we have the Woodward Dream Cruise. There are a lot of things that go on here that the rest of the world doesn’t know about. I just want to show a different side of Detroit. I plan on having most of my creative projects to take place in Detroit. Spike Lee and Adam Sandler have a lot of their projects based in New York. Tyler Perry has a lot of his projects take place in Atlanta. I want to be the one who spot lights Detroit.