Origin Story

Professional Reader   Reviews Published

I have spent the last couple of years building up the 23rd Legion without really knowing what I wanted to do with it. The first thought was to pull together a collective of creatives and see where that went. That went pretty much nowhere.

Since I have a history of helping online communities get their feet, the second incarnation was sort of a “one-stop shop” for everything you might need to get your online presence established. That kinda flopped, too, as social media helped make those tools easy peasy for everyone to use. I applauded that and waited for the next pivot.

Then came Red Rising.

I’ve got a bit of a history of being pulled headlong into books/comics/movies/videogames/etc. and falling in love with the visuals. For me, Red Rising hit all of the right buttons. I’d already been designing various decals for about eight years and just giving them to friends or providing stencils to various customizers to help with their efforts. With Red Rising, I found a great opportunity to help address what I soon discovered to be a rabid fandom.

Sooo, off I went and fired up my old Etsy shop and let a couple of folks know that I had some Red Rising designs currently and would have new designs coming at a pretty constant pace. The reception was really good, and, as the Hic Sunt Leones group on Facebook exploded, so did the opportunity to put out more designs, custom designs, and fan-inspired designs.

I still didn’t know what 23rd Legion was, though.

Having had my taste of a massive fandom, I started poking around for other communities that were as robust as HSL. In the process, I read a whole lot of amazing books and got inspired as all heck to do some other designs. Those went right in the Etsy shop alongside the Red Rising ones and I figured out what 23rd Legion really was: a way to fulfill the whimsies of the fandoms that tickled my fancy. In addition, a standardized source to continue to help address the creative process with other creatives (does that even make sense?).

Now for this website.

The way I see it, the 23rd Legion scratches a whole lot of itches. I’ll be writing book reviews of the stuff I’ve been reading lately. I’ll be sharing my creative process in posts to, in a manner, pull back the curtain on what I do. In addition, I’ll be sharing the process on some of the collaborations I’ve done that don’t normally get to see the light of day via my normal posting venues.

There will be a little bit of everything.

Justin Bowers

Justin is a purveyor of fine code, a collector of many many things, and a sympathetic reader. Aside from here, you can find his inane rantings on Twitter at @aquaphase or on Goodreads.

Justin can be reached here.