§ This month’s nice art feature is by Savanna Ganucheau. Savanna is an artist from New Orleans whose comics work has been featured in Adventure Time, Steven Universe and she has an upcoming graphic novel coming out in February called Bloom. It’s written by Kevin Paquette and published by First Second. I wanted to showcase these images because I really like the blue in them. It makes these images look cool and slightly melancholic. You can find her art over at her tumblr page, her website, and you can follow her on Twitter
§ There are tons of things I could plug this month, but I’ll hone in on two. If you haven’t already, do consider giving a donation to the “Defend the 11” funds on GoFundMe. I’ll let you read the story if you haven’t, but 11 cartoonists, publisher and critics are being sued for defamation by small-press publisher Ray Ray Books and Cody Pickrodt. It’s a long story that made the rounds these past couple of weeks. Go read and contribute to their funds if you can
§ Additionally, consider contributing to Osvaldo Oyola’s Patreon Page. It would help him hire more contributors for his site.
§ There’s still time to contribute to Reimena Yee Crowdfunding campaign for a print version of The Carpet Merchant of Konstantiniyya. The crowdfunding campaign was extended for a few more weeks. I’m looking forward to seeing the printed version of this book.
§ Congratulation to Cory Feder, Julian Fiebach and Will M., the winners of this year’s Comics Workbook Composition Competition. You can see their submissions at the Comics Workbook website by followng the link.
§ Ronald Wimberly was interviewed on CNN about the racist Serena Williams cartoon that caused such an uproar a few weeks ago. He makes some interesting point about the cartoon, in addition to being racist, it’s also lazy and not well-crafted.
§ Chris Anthony Diaz interviewed Hannah K. Lee over at the Comics Workbook. The interview itself is old, but was recently re-published and is worth reading.
§ Mariko Tamaki and Rosemary Valero-O’Connel are working on a graphic novel called Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me to be released next year by MacMillian Children’s Publishing Group
§ CBC’s Day 6 had an interview with Sara Alfageeh about her viral tweets reimagining the X-Men characters Dusk. Those designs are amazing.
§ The CBC interviewed Ken Steacy from his studio in Victoria, BC. He is illustrating the latest Margaret Atwood graphic novel series War Bears.
§ Ok, last CBC link, I promise. Mary Hynes over at Tapestry has a lengthy interview with Vishavjit Singh, a New York City-based performance artist, cosplayer and cartoonist. Since 2013, he’s been dressing up as Sikh Captain America. I didn’t know his story, but had seen a couple of him in costume circulating online. He wants to. as he says “kick some intolerant ass.”
§ I had missed that Michael Tisserand’s book on George Herriman’s Krazy Kat was due to be released in French this year. It is now available in French and the reviews mentions it’s an incredible read. Krazy Kat: George Herriman: Une vie en noir et blanc, Tisserand takes a close look at the rise of the comic strip in the US as well as Herriman’s profesional and personal life. I missed it when it was originally released, I’ll have to take a look now.
§ It’s pretty clear by now that Emil Ferris’ My Favorite Thing is Monsters is dominating award shows and is a bonafide hit. It’s just been translated in French and has been selected as one of the highlights of the French-Canadian bookstore association for September. It’s also been #1 on their best-sellers list since it’s release. It’s great to see this book finding a new audience. I can’t wait to see part two.
§ A final French link for the month, I was not expecting this extremely niche joke about Norwegian cartoonist Jason on prime time comedy radio show La soirée est encore jeune. Vincent Leonard, one half of absurdist comedy duo Les Denis Drolet, was co-hosting one of Quebec’s most popular comedy radio show and mentioned he was a guest speaker at a comics festival in rural Quebec. He said he was surprised that so many people came up to him, he assumed they wanted to chat with him about comics so he was chatting up about Norwegian cartoonist Jason, only for people to stare blankly at him, much like the live audience of the comedy show did. The festival attendees were hoping for autograph, not long soliloquies about how incredible “Hey, Wait!” was. It was a bit surreal to hear this live with the entire audience thinking collectively “Who the hell is he talking about”. For those interested, it’s in the opening segment.
§ NPR has a round-up of the quirkiest crowdfunded projects of the year and some comics projects of interest are highlighted, Iron Circus’ FTL Y’all and the Mind MGMT read-along vinyl record and comic book
§ Well that is excellent news, Carta Monir and Carolyn Nowak started a micro-press! Diskette Press has launched earlier this month in advance of SPX and they’ve already printed some interesting projects. The risograph printing process seems to be tailor-made for Carta’s sensibilities. Go check out their website and their online store as well.
§ Another development in the ongoing Matt Furie’s long legal battle to reclaim his character of Pepe the Frog after it was appropriated by the Alt-Right as a hate symbol. Furie is taking radio-host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and Infowars to court over copyright infringement. SPLC has the details of the ongoing legal battle led by Furie.
§ Not comics, but tangentially related since comic book movies has become the most ubiquitous cinema experience in our society. Todd VanDerWerff looks at the way blockbusters addresses or fail to address, the challenging world we live in. Sure superheroes are saving the world, what is the world worth saving is not a question that is often asked. VanDerWerff looks at the formless arguments of modern blockbusters.
§ Claire Napier wrote a very informative primer on Valiant and their Universe. It’s well written and made me more interested in checking out Valiant’s offering. The last Valiant comics I’ve purchased were the Quantum & Woody series illustrated by Ottawa’s Own Tom Fowler. I need to dig back into Valiant, they have interesting comics creators working on their property.
§ I had missed that there’s a new comic series called Surviving the City written Cree educator Tasha Spillett from Manitoba and illustrated by Natasha Donovan, an artist and illustrator from Vancouver. This series looks at a multitude of modern issues faced by Indigenous communities in Canada. As per the press release of the book: Tasha Spillet’s graphic-novel debut tells a story of kinship, resilience, cultural resurgence, and the anguish of a missing loved one. Miikwan and Dez are best friends. Miikwan is Anishinaabe; Dez is Inninew. Together, the teens navigate the challenges of growing up Indigenous in an urban landscape – they’re so close, they even completed their Berry Fast together. However, when Dez’s grandmother becomes too sick, Dez is told she can’t stay with her anymore. With the threat of a group home looming, Dez can’t bring herself to go home and disappears. Miikwan is devastated, and the wound of her missing mother resurfaces. Will Dez’s community find her before it’s too late? Will Miikwan be able to cope if they don’t?” This is a comic I’m eager to get my hands on. It looks interesting, and beautiful too!
§ The latest episode of Drawing a Dialogue focuses on Autism in comics and social-emotional learning
§ Boulet has a comic about the frustration of dealing with a collector trying to gain special favours. It made me laugh. I’ve seen this behaviour at cons before, most recently at the Quebec City Book Fair as a man was quite insistent with Jimmy Beaulieu about something that appeared quite trivial. I understand the frustration as artists at convention can’t just leave, they have to find a way to deal with whatever kind of madness comes to them.
§ Alexandra Beguez and Sarah Mirk have documented the history of Hysteria over at The Nib. I think this was The Nib’s best comic this month.
§ Shea Hennum on L. Nichols’ Flocks over at The Comics Journal
§ If you see something I should know about, tell me in the comments or tweet at me @Leblanc_Phil
Philippe Leblanc is a Canadian comics journalist. In his regular life, he improves Canadian medical education, and is the co-host of the Ottawa Comic Book Club. He reads alternative, indie and art comics at night and write about them for the Comics Beat.