Cum Dolore: A TF2 Gore Zine is a for-profit TF2 physical (and later free digital) fanzine that was organized on Twitter and Discord by SCUMSUCK and deflectric, and was sold on SCUMSUCK's store for a month. After all orders were delivered, the zine became officially available for free SCUMSUCK's store, as well as on other places. The zine's focus is eroguro, with the Team Fortress 2 characters as the victims of the collaborating artists' gruesome ideas.

You can find zine-making tool details, budget, original print foreword, comprehensive participant list and merch photos on the zine's dedicated page at SCUMSUCK's site.

This is the best zine I've participated in to this day, September 21, 2023. It's real proof that fanzines do not have to be a nightmare to be endured by collaborators under flimsy reasonings like "it's a passion project" or "things happen", they don't have to be fancy glossy professional printing endeavors that bloat the budget, they don't have to have a dozen mods, they don't have to be about the new hotness in order to succeed. Zines were never meant to be prestigious projects, they're something to be put together with your own hands, and that most definitely does not have to translate to making artists work for free. I was paid 60USD for my efforts and I got a copy of my own along with all of the offered merch, as did the rest of the zine collaborators if they chose to accept the rewards.

My biggest takeaway from this experience was that I don't want to ever endure a lousy fanzine organizer ever again. Anyone with aspirations to mod a zine has to understand the weight of what they're asking from the people they accept into the project. Their time, their effort, their work, they're all valuable things, even in a fan project, and should be given the respect and care they deserve. SCUMSUCK and deflectric deeply cared for giving everyone who joined a positive, fulfilling experience, and they more than succeeded, at least in my opinion. My only regret is that I didn't offer to make merch because I was too insecure.

Below are the entries I submitted to the zine. One solo illustration, and one companion illustration for a story by another artist.

🔞: explicit content
🌶️: sexual themes (sex, sexual fluids, horny vibe)
🥩: violent themes (blood, injury, violence)
🪰: grotesque themes (vomit, waste, putrefaction)

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My submission


Ritual 🔞🥩

Team Fortress 2 fan art. Gore. An illustration with three figures: Soldier, a thick, big-bellied, muscled man with a strong jawline and a big mouth, wearing nothing but a helmet. Merasmus, a tall and extremely skinny old man with age spots on his face, hands, arms and feet, a thin long face, and long black finger and toe nails, wearing a tattered robe over a tight black body suit with mid-forearm length sleeves and a hood with holes for his ears, as well as a goat skull on top of his head that's missing one horn. The third figure is Merasmus' astral projection, a larger version of himself with accentuated scarier features, wearing a string across his torso with fish heads hanging from it and furs instead of a robe. Soldier roughly lifts Merasmus by his waist and legs, easily circling the older man's thin figure with each meaty palm. His eyes are in the shape of a spiral, as if he's been hypnotized. A teary eyed, furious Merasmus shoves his face away from himself with his pointy right elbow, pulling a knife with a skull motif out of many fresh wounds on Soldier's body. He holds a leash made of an intestine on his other hand, which is tied to Soldier's neck. Merasmus opens his mouth to vomit some sort of ectoplasm, the stream it makes circling the composition, going between Soldier's legs and behind him to form the shape of the larger Merasmus. This Merasmus smiles with malice at Soldier, right hand on the man's bicep and left hand pulling on the gut-leash to add pressure to Soldier's neck. Giant-Merasmus' left eye is bleeding, as is the socket of his goat skull hat. Both Meramus and the skull's right eyes are present, and they stare at Soldier in the eye directly, casting a spell on him.

I always feel shocked when I look at this drawing. I drew such soft, grainy texture not with a spray pen, but with a solid pen, slowly scratching in the black ink and erasing some of it to make those shadows... Every time I stare I want to punch myself. Why did I do that?! Why do I love to make things so difficult?! I must enjoy being in pain. I drew something very good, though, even I can admit that. My favorite bits are the vomit, the fish heads, and both Merasmus' nails.

You can buy this print on my INPRNT store

Below are some process sketches I found in the picture's old file.


Heart to Heart - companion piece 🔞🥩

Team Fortress 2 fan art. A drawing of Medic, an older man with short black hair with a side part, a strong jawline and wide shoulders wearing small glasses, suspenders over a white coat with a red cross patch on each bicep and red gloves. He smiles with his eyes closed looking inmensely satisfied, gently holding a heart to his cheek in the palm of his left hand. He teasingly traces the edge of the heart with the index of his right hand. White wings spread open from his back.

I intended this to feel like a header or footer of sorts, to capture the overall feelings of Motte's story, Heart to Heart. Looking back, the composition might have benefitted from a more horizontal framing to fit its purpose, but I don't regret the final look. The reds look good I think, as well as the highlights I put on them, and the blood as lipstick looks pretty. I hope Medic enthusiasts like my interpretation of him.

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