Neil Bryer was born and raised in Otsego, MI, where he had a typical upbringing of Saturday morning cartoons and Sunday comic strips. Doodling from a young age, he showed aptitude toward art, which his parents encouraged and helped him to develop.
In school, Neil's friends introduced him to comic books and at comic book conventions he met established artists from whom he learned the ways of self-publishing in the form of mini-comics. He used this format to produce his own comics and create fan favorite character the Crime Fighting Monk.
Neil has taken art classes through several different institutions over the years. From grade school art classes to more advanced classes at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, he jumped at the chance to expand artistically. After high school, he attended Kalamazoo Valley Community College where he received an Associate's Degree in Graphic Design. He has since continued his education learning new skills in illustration, graphic design, animation and web design.
While looking for a project to fulfill his creative side, Neil decided to create a weekly comic strip. Described as, "The conversations geeks have at the bar brought to life," Wombat is based on his real life experiences (taken to the next level) and include not only himself, but also close friends John, Paul and Amanda as the main cast of characters. The strip first appeared weekly on his MySpace blog in 1996 before moving to its own site at www.wombatcomic.com in late 1997.
Neil currently lives in Kalamazoo, MI where he works in marketing for a local credit union. He continues his artistic education both in school and at local comic shops. His webcomic, Wombat, appears on his website www.wombatcomic.com.
- Encore September 2015: Get Serious, Kalamazoo's Comics Scene
- SMASH Magazine March 2016: Artist Spotlight - Illustrator Neil Bryer