Today, on scene reporting from Alyssa Berg, an amazing comics show in Germany, comics with Georgia O’Keeffe, tips from Benjamin Marra and Noah Van Sciver, and a few other things we’re excited about.



Alyssa Berg provides this snapshot of a recent evening spent with Rokudenashiko, MariNaomi, and Anne Ishii (pictured above, left to right) –

“On Wednesday evening (May 18th, 2016), the Asian American Writers’ Workshop in NYC presented a conversation between MariNaomi (Turning Japanese, 2dcloud, 2016), Rokudenashiko (What Is Obscenity? The Story of a Good For Nothing Artist and her Pussy, Koyama Press, 2016) and Anne Ishii (moderator of the conversation, translator and co editor of Rokudenashiko’s new book).

MariNaomi did a reading from Turning Japanese accompanied by projected images from the book. The first part focused on her experience in an illegal hostess bar in San Jose. The second part presented was a quieter section of the story based on a visit to the temple of the Goddess of Mercy in Japan. (Check out that excerpt HERE.)

MariNaomi also discussed curating the Cartoonists of Color Database and the Queer Cartoonists Database and her fear that “diversity is a fad right now.”

Rokudenashiko presented a wide variety of manko (pussy) artworks that appear in her new book What Is Obscenity? The Story of a Good For Nothing Artist and her Pussy and discussed details of her arrest for breaking Japanese obscenity laws for posting online, open-source blueprints of her pussy. She also talked about being an easy target for police because she is an unrepresented, female, freelance artist but “people in a position of weakness need to show resistance.” Rokudenashiko presented this video piece and if you have 4 minutes 34 seconds to spare, I recommend having a look.” – Alyssa Berg



The German show …and Other Stories opens today in the Zeitraumexit gallery in Mannheim! The show explores current American self-publishing trends and will feature a collection of booklets, original drawings, mini comics, zines, and other printed materials by American artists Alyssa Berg, Julia Gfrörer, Aidan Koch, Laila Milevski and Maggie Umber. What a lineup!

Maggie Umber and Raighne Hogan (of 2dcloud) will be presenting two free workshops at the gallery on June 11th and 13th – find details on how to attend HERE.


Comics w OKeeffe

Check out a new feature on Comics Workbook: ART TRIP – a continuing series that offers reflections on art and comics, and the adventures that transform those who seek it out.

First up, my own (Sally here!) recent run-in with Georgia O’Keeffe.

…I’m looking at her stuff and seeing comics, yes. That’s where my brain lives constantly, these days. The index card is a panel for a comic. The Palo Duro Canyon drawings aren’t a series – they’re a sequence. Her paintings without lines prove how lively comics can look without being pinned down by traditional inks.

Read the rest of the adventure HERE!



Benjamin Marra added his “10 Rules for Drawing” to the collection curated by Dov Torbin this week. Some highlights for me are:

2. Emotional accuracy is more important than emulating reality. Realism is overrated and reality is an illusion anyway. Just make a good drawing.

4. Don’t create walls. You’ll only run into them later. Avoid Puritanism of materials, tools, techniques, methods, and approaches. Don’t be a perfectionist.

9. You gotta know the rules before you can break the rules.
10. There are no rules.
Check out the whole list here, and read more “10 Rules for Drawing” by the likes of Alex Toth or Michael DeForge, among others…!
While we’re on the topic of “tips for being a good artist” here’s a Comics Workbook TV interview with Noah Van Sciver that I really appreciated. The idea of “world-building” through sketchbooking is great.



Two things I’m excited about that will be releasing into the world soon –

Anya Davidson is working on a new zine (above), due to be released at CAKE this year (tentatively titled Gloom Planet)…!

The Shirley Jackson Project (edited by Rob Kirby and being released by Ninth Art Press) is in it’s final production stages. Here’s the rad cover art by Michael Fahy:


Can’t wait for this beast to roar!


That’s my story for this week, folks. I’m currently on the road between Santa Fe, NM, and Pittsburgh, PA, (coming home to the Comics Workbook world headquarters!) so pardon a light offering today. The whole team will be back next week with all the best in comics news for you. Thanks for hanging out with us! – Sally

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