Broken Kode

Broken Kode is a design and art process site.
Written by Khaled Abou Alfa.

31st December, 2013

2013 in Review

When you reflect back on a year, the hope is always to find a number of moments that put a smile on your face - thankfully these last 12 months have given me with a lot to smile about.

Getting the news that I am going to become a father was the definite highlight - a fact which I’ve honestly not wrapped my head completely around, but I’ve started preparing1.

Creatively this year is one of my strongest in recent memory. I drew an entire season of Moon Racket, a slew of additional promotional images and designed the website - although it’s going to get some redesign love in the new year. Surprisingly the comic work didn’t end there as I completely rewrote the script for Chroma (my upcoming comics project) that has been many years in the making.

I redesigned this here site for the umpteenth time, however I do believe that this iteration is by far my most mature attempt and probably one that I will likely not change fundamentally for many years to come. The aspects of the site that I am most happy with are the colours and the typography, which is the first time in many years that I am ahead of the curve in certain respects (small caps only valid in certain browsers, surprisingly not Safari/Webkit proper).

Finally I started work on two iOS apps. The first one, we’ve scrapped and shelved, the other I hope we get some traction in the new year and we finally ship something, because as we all know:

Real Artists Ship.

Steve Jobs

Here’s wishing everyone a great 2014.


  1. This year I started getting into photography a little bit more. I want to make sure that I am capable of capturing my son or daughter’s life in the most beautiful way - like every self respecting geek father should. 

26th December, 2013
13th December, 2013

Chroma Script

Earlier this year I completed rewriting the script I have been working on for many years now. I originally conceived of the idea in my 20s. Now in my early/mid-30s I’ve finally completed the works in a fashion that I believe I can actually start making some progress on this idea by drawing it and eventually publishing it.

Although it’s never the tools that make the end product, the right tools remove unnecessary friction. In this regard, Highland has been an irreplaceable solution for creating scripts. I thoroughly recommend it to all script (and non-script) writers.

3rd December, 2013

Lettering

In creating Moon Racket, it was very clear to me early on that the lettering would have to be a character in itself. My initial attempts at lettering involved hand lettering, in the end I opted for some great fonts from the Comicraft library.

25th November, 2013
The latest episode of Moon Racket is online. The second panel of the strip is probably the first time I was comfortable enough with the characters to try and make them appear more grounded in their environment.

The latest episode of Moon Racket is online. The second panel of the strip is probably the first time I was comfortable enough with the characters to try and make them appear more grounded in their environment.

(Source: moonracket)

24th November, 2013

Codanauts

In early 2012 I was working on an app for iOS with my cousin. The second company name we came up with was Codanauts. I loved the name and came up with this logo over a weekend. 2 months later my cousin found out about Codenauts. There is a subtle difference if you missed it: Cod-a-nauts vs Cod-e-nauts.

Oddly enough they seem to have stopped their operation and our operation never took off. I still love the similicity of this logo and hope to use it in the future.

20th November, 2013

Fresh Starts

Earlier this year I contemplated shutting down Broken Kode, a site that has been part of the internet landscape since January 2004, a total of nearly 10 years online. In a last attempt to keep the name and the site alive I tried changing things around to see if I could maintain my enthusiasm for it.

My first attempt was to try and focus on all things Tesla Motors. However I quickly realised that actually I was writing to an audience of one (myself) and that I wasn’t enjoying the process all that much. My next idea was to use the site as a simple Tumblr, a digital drawer for things that others created. My attempts can still be read here.

Ultimately I felt that the site deserved better treatment. In the last few months I have started publishing my comic work, on Moon Racket and I have several other projects in the pipeline as well. So this site will be used as a way to log my ideas and showcase the creative process, in the attempt to better understand what I am doing and how I could be doing it better. The posts on this site will be more limited, however each and every one will be infinitely more personal.