Sally Ingraham here with work and wisdom from Kriota Willberg, Nicole Hollander, Deb Lucke, and many more!
Kriota Willberg calls Draw Stronger (coming out in April 2018) the comic she was “born to make”. She addresses a chronic problem she has witnessed among cartoonists and artists and creatives of all sorts – living with pain. Publishers Weekly had a great chat with her recently, and she began by saying:
“In the US we have a number of familiar clichés: “No pain, no gain.” “You must suffer for your art.” “If it doesn’t hurt, it’s not working.” There’s a stereotype: artists suffer in literature and film—it’s sexy! Who wants to watch a movie about a genius artist who gets enough rest, meets their deadlines, never yells at their spouse or kids, makes incredible pain free art, and dies after a fulfilling happy career?
Wrist braces, calluses, poisoning from media (ink/paint), and lack of sleep are interpreted by many to mean that we are suffering in order to make great comics. That’s how it’s done! This is true for acting, dancing, sports, banking, science, everything. Our culture tells us that you love your discipline more (regardless of talent) if you prove through suffering that you are working harder than anyone else.
Obviously, deadlines, day jobs, and life get in the way of healthy work/rest schedules. However, the comics community is beginning to be supportive of injured artists and more aware of healthy drawing practices. Protecting a lifetime of drawing is becoming more important than the next deadline.“
Kriota Willberg is the champion we need right now, determined to get this point across to legions of struggling (and not in the glamorous way) artists. Read the rest of the interview at Publishers Weekly HERE.
Over on The Comics Beat Kriota was a guest columnist recently, and shared a lengthy interview with Nate Piekos. The topic is Nate’s life-changing injury to hand/shoulder/neck which was caused by his work as a professional letterer for numerous comics publishers. Kriota calls his experience “nightmarish but hopeful”. Read about it HERE.
Be smart! Pick up Kriota’s book when it comes out, or catch one of her excellent workshops at a comics expo near you. (Pittsburgh cartoonists, Kriota will be here in June offering her workshop – keep an eye out for more details soon!)
Nicole Hollander talks about her new book in the video above – it is called We Ate Wonder Bread, and is a memoir of her childhood in Chicago. Nicole Hollander is the creator of the comic strip Sylvia, which has been in syndication since 1981 (you can read archival strips and an occasional new one HERE).
Using Sylvia to speak her mind over the years, Nicole Hollander is an important voice and an interesting cartoonist. There’s a short but powerful interview with her on Publishers Weekly where she talks about the difference between creating a political daily comic strip, and a memoir. She also talks about what it meant to be a feminist cartoonist in the 1970’s.
“I didn’t even know my career was impossible. We had features editors who were women but it meant nothing. The approval came from men sitting in an office saying thumbs up or thumbs down. There were what, three or four slots? Early women cartoonists like Brenda Starr were very feminine. Lynda Barry had a strong following, but only in alternative papers. With Sylvia, readers were always writing in complaining, saying they were “disgusted their daughter would have to read about disgusting things like having your period.” But I got away with a lot. There was so much independence in what I did.“
Read the rest of the interview HERE.
The chance to check out Edward Gorey’s Art Collection, as depicted by cartoonist Deb Lucke, was pretty much everything I could have asked for today. See the whole thing at The New Yorker – HERE.
Deb Lucke is known for her series for kids, The Lunch Witch – but I really like the more incidental comics that she makes. Here’s another one about a museum visit, this time to the MOMA, from February of 2018 – check it out on The Rumpus.
- Just in time for Passover, Liana Finck shares her take on the story of Moses and The Burning Bush, in The Tough Customer – on Tablet.
- The New York Times Book Review has added two comics and graphic novel columnists – the excellent Hillary Chute and Ed Park. The Book Review will start running their column in April. Read more about it HERE.
- Kelly Kincaid draws a hilarious webcomic called Jetlagged Comic, which is about her life as a flight attendant. Huffpost shares 25 of her best comics, and the story behind how she started making them.
- Whit Taylor presents Leslie Stein’s Present this week on Illustrated PEN – check it out HERE.
- SyFy Wire chats with Wendy Pini and her husband Richard on the past and future of Elfquest, which recently came to a close after 40 years. Read the article HERE.
- Hillary Brown tackles Eleanor Davis‘ Why Art? over on Paste Magazine, and offers a new interview with her – HERE.
- Lauren Purje met Neil Gaiman recently and made a comic about it – on Hyperallergic.
- Tessa Strain reviews Sloane Leong‘s new Image series, Prism Stalker – on The Comics Journal.
Announcing the Spring Semester of thee Santoro Correspondence Course for Comic Book Makers
8 weeks! $500 bux! 10 spots available!
Rolling start date because of spring break – start as early as March 30th 2018.
Deadline to apply is April 12th.
Read all about the course HERE and email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details or to apply.
Suzy and Cecil – 3-30-2018 – by Sally Ingraham
Joanie and Jordie – 3-30-2018 – by Caleb Orecchio