Q&A: Flip Sandy on the Dunk Revival

by Stéphane Bernard

Will Anderson—a.k.a. William T.A., a.k.a. B.A., a.k.a. Flip Sandy—is an editor, artist (sometimes) and Weed guitarist presently living in Vancouver. He and Captain McLucky are co-publishers of a monthly called Dunk, which is best described as an underground newsprint edition stemming from Lucky’s Comics on Main Street.

Oddly enough, creating content for the Project Space blog usually involves mixing a little bit of business with a whole lot of pleasure. In this case, while going around the vendor tables at the most recent incarnation of Canzine West, I overheard hushed rumours about a certain Dunk newspaper coming back from the dead. And, sure enough, after checking in with owner Gabe Winder (a.k.a. G. Wilder or the good Captain himself) at the Lucky’s Comics table, I had a good excuse to swing by my local indie comic and bookstore for an all-revealing interview. It’s a tough life… I know.

Now, being a regular visitor to the space, I was already quite familiar with the paper that started up in October of 2012, as it often gets home delivered to local subscribers and a few die-hard fans south of the border. But last year in November, the “last” issue appeared in store, along with plans for Anderson to embark on a cross-country tour with his band Weed. Fast-forward about a year, and it seems like Dunk is ready once again to spread the word on the street about the local comics and indie band scene.

Project Space: Hi Will. Could you start us off by explaining where you came up with the name of the publication?

Bill Anderson: Gabe and I were conceptualizing the title a few years ago now: Lucky Rag, Lucky Favour… But neither of us could come up with something that would stick. We’re both big basketball fans though, and we were riffing on NBA Zine or something like that, and then when I said Dunk out loud, immediately his eyes got wide. We sort of fist-bumped on the matter and that was it.

PS: Cool, so I guess the newspaper idea grew out of the fact that you work at the store… How long have you been here?

BA: I’ve been working here for about three or four years now? Yeah, there was a zine that Gabe made in about 2004. It was a skinny kind of thing, so funny… So when I saw that, I was like: “How come you’ve never showed me this before?” Also, I was inspired by a few other similar publications in the US, which led us to putting together the monthly newspaper that acts a little bit like advertising for the shop: “Hey, this is Lucky’s, you should come take a look.”

PS: That’s great. And how was the tour with the band?

BA: In April, I was gone for a month with Weed and then I did two months with the Courtneys, doing some tour managing, as they were the supporting act for Tegan and Sara. They needed an extra driver. We went all over the States, all the way out East. And after that, while I was on that two-month tour, I was offered to do another Weed tour, supporting the band called Fucked Up. So, it was all done on the road, for about six months… a long, long ass time.

PS: That’s perfect timing. I guess you were happy to get back?

BA: Yeah!

PS: Is publishing then something you enjoy doing? I’m assuming you draw comics as part of the content…

BA: I don’t do any comics, actually. I draw, maybe an illustration for the front cover, but I never turned on to making comics. I do the editing and some of the writing, but I enjoy the design stuff more than anything. I did enjoy screen-printing at school though… I did Visual Arts at the Emily Carr University of Art and Design.

When we started the publication, about ten people were helping out with content, mostly friends from school. Every now and again, we get suggestions from people we trust, as we want to keep a consistent vision for it all.

PS: Understandably. What can we expect from Dunk 3.0?

BA: The new issue will actually have a design similar to the first issues, but with new content. The colour covers were cool toward the end, but the big pictures took up the whole front pages, so now we’re back to the three-column layout. We were losing lots of space…

We’re still at eight pages as well. We were going to start with four, but we got enough ads to do eight. We also try to keep the content different every time. We’ve covered the recent Vancouver scene, but most of the artists will be familiar.

PS: Are you still publishing the events calendar on the back cover?

BA: Yup! It’s an all-ages events calendar for the Vancouver area, and it is free to have your events listed. Ideally, we receive emails from event promoters, but sometimes I end up having to scour Facebook or whatever. It is often the last thing I do with the issue, so anything that makes that step easier is appreciated.

DUNK is available in select establishments across Vancouver. Contact Lucky’s Comics for distribution information, advertising rates or free event promotion: [email protected]

Images: Cover illustrations/writing are courtesy of their respective artists/authors. Publication design by Sandy Graphics, Inc. Scans/GIF by Stéphane Bernard.