Welcome To Swamp Land Resorts

by Shaz Hassan

Welcome to the gnarly world of Swamp Land Resorts where sweet boxed wine is reasonably priced and alligators have a taste for meth. 

Swamp Land Resorts is a digital comic produced by Australian artist Mike Watt. With a heavy dose of fluro green mixed with a horror b grade aesthetic, it's a fun story that is free to enjoy right here

Where did the concept for Swamp Lands come from?

I'm constantly drawing and I'll zone out and sometimes see a bit of a story in what I've drawn, like a character with an interesting expression holding a random object. This can spark a whole story,  A very early drawing of a guy in a singlet pulling a rope out of shallow was the huge catalyst for Swamp Lands. So much of the story came from that one scene. I worked out he was pulling a cooler full of meth out of the swamp because he was the resident meth dealer to an area nearby, that alligators (there were originally multiple) would eat the meth and send them into a frenzy. It pretty much all came from that one drawing and I built around it. 

How long did it take you to put together and did you do a lot of editing/revisions,  or did it ‘flow’ quite well?

The initial idea happened at the start of 2020. It was a long, slow, disjointed grind. There were a bunch of breaks in between and the launch was cancelled multiple times due to COVID, which gave me a bit of a reason to procrastinate too. It was a bit frustrating at the time, but I think it helped in the end having that extra time to look at everything and think on it. I'd create all these little pieces and then I'd have to figure out which ones to use and build around. Definitely a fair bit of editing now I think about it. A heap of characters and scenarios I sketched up didn't make it into the final project.


Some of those characters are amazing - Terrance is particularly good - how did you write them and conceptualize them?

Ah, cheers. It varies, a fair bit. Like with the way the Swamp Wizard came about was because, I had this idea of a little hallucinogenic frog that was like a worm in a tequila bottle for a really tripped out swamp drug cocktail (which turned out to be Swamp Juice), and I thought there must be some loose character who is making this. A tripped out wizard popped into my head, initially he looked like this real surly bad vibe trucker type wizard and he didn't feel right. Then when I realised he was a happy chiller he kind of drew himself. 
Terrance is a character that I just started drawing a nose and then I drew him as pretty much the finished character and he kind of writes and creates himself.  I'd say this is about 60% or 70% come this way and then the other 30% come from thinking on them first. 

And why the lovely green colours?

I knew I wanted it to be a crazy green to go with the swamp theme, I went through hundreds of greens, it kept looking too nice or too murky. I found that weird toxic green on the 368th try and thought, I'll leave that one and have a look for a better one later, it turned out it was the winner.

Any plans for printing it?

It would definitely be nice, I did create this one with a website in mind but I will always always love print. I've got some things to figure out, but we'll see.


Once again, go check out Swamp Land Resorts by Mike Watt - his attention to detail, his characters and the environment he has created for them is so rich and fun.