§ Great news! Israeli cartoonists Rutu Modan and Yirmi Pinkus have launched a line of kids comics.
Over the years, they have developed their skills and their creations now range from graphic novels to books of prose for adults. They both teach visual communications: Modan at Bezalel and Pinkus at the Shenkar School of Engineering and Design in Ramat Gan. Last month, they unveiled their latest project: Noah’s Library, a publishing house specializing in comic books for children, which has already released two wonderful comic books for preschoolers. Modan has produced new illustrations for the adventures of Uri Kaduri, one of the first comic-strip heroes in modern Hebrew literature who was created by Aryeh Navon, a pioneer in the world of illustration in Israel. In the 1930s, Navon worked for the children’s weekly “Davar for Children” and would produce a weekly action comic strip that he also illustrated. Poet and author Lea Goldberg, who also worked on the weekly’s editorial board, composed rhymes for each strip that were suited to that week’s plot segment.
§ Jeet Heer and Ethan Rilly did a webcomic together? Sign me up.
§ Lots of GN news in this roundup of activity by clients of agent Judy Hansen including Pashmina, by Indian-American cartoonist Nidhi Chanani and Emperor Poet by Sungyoon Choi.
§ Do you remember NONPLAYER by Nate Simpson? It looked great and it was the buzz book for a month or so. After 31 months and a biking accident, issue #2 is finally on its way.
Thirteen pages into penciling the second issue, Simpson injured his shoulder in a September 2011 bicycle accident. Recovery led swiftly into the start of a new family. With a full-time job also vying for his attention, production on Nonplayer #2 slowed to a crawl. According to Simpson, however, the comic is now circulating among trusted peers. In recent months, he’s also begun work on an unnamed webcomic.
§ David Morrell is the creator of Rambo and a while ago, someone at Marvel thought it would be a great idea to have him write a Spider-Man story. All did not go to plan. The story took forever to come out, and when it did, Morrell did not like the changes:
“Bad news about the second part of my Spider-Man: Frost comic-book series,” Morrell wrote to Facebook. “Someone at Marvel changed my captions, added weak jokes, repeated captions, deleted captions from panels that needed them, and inserted one caption that contradicts the theme. When I saw this early version, I sent three pages of corrections to Marvel. I was assured that my changes had been made, but for whatever reason, the terrible version got printed, destroying the poignant tone of part one. What a pity. This could have been a gem.”
Mainstream authors nationwide are discovering: writing comic books, it’s not for everyone.
§ Marvel’s Associate Producer Judy Stephens has more than the average amount of skills. Not only is she a diver and one of the best Captain Marvel cosplayers around, she’s also a very talented photographeras this interview shows. Above image by and © Judy Stephens.
SeagateCreative: What’s the most surprising idea you recently had and why?
Judy Stephens: It may not be necessarily new or surprising, but taking a model out of the “norm” and placing her/him in a unique location fascinates me – such as a cosplayer in the middle of the Times Square insanity, or the middle of a random field. Lately, I’ve gotten in my head that I’d love to shoot cosplayers in Iceland or another “foreign” place – such as a Sailor Moon-style costume in amongst the volcanic rock formations, or a super hero on a glacier. I’ve shot cosplayers similar to this before at conventions, but have not yet the opportunity to shoot this in a wilder place.
§ The Village Voice weighs in with the weirdest “Best of” list yet this year.
§ Gift guide: for a limited time, you can buy Abby Denson Dolltopia-themed iPhone case at Tekserve.
§ There is a very real money bin where you can actually dive in like a porpoise, burrow like a gopher and throw the coins in the air and let them hit you on the head.
§ Producers of THE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG had to add a female character because Tolkien left them out entirely. Whoops! Enter Tauriel. Philippa Boyens explains why and how:
Philippa Boyens: To be honest, the very first motivation was that there were no female characters in the book at all really… You really feel the weight of that. We knew that you would especially feel the weight of it in terms of a movie. We wanted to find a way to introduce a female character in a meaningful way that had a role to play that felt truthful to the world. This character came into being when we were sitting down literally trying to structure the film and talk about how we thought we’d tell the tale. Once we said, “OK, we’re going to do this,” we needed to think about, “Well, is it a woman of Lake-town? Is it a female Hobbit?” What we found was one of the pieces of the storytelling that felt like it could hold this was the story of the Elves, mainly because they’re kind of mysterious.
Tolkien Nerd analysis: female warrior elves go against most everything Tolkien wrote; a human shieldmaiden would have been way more canonical, but let’s face it, a warrior Sylvan elfette is way sexier.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.