Tag Archives: Comics

Quickstarter Roundup: Three Comics Campaigns to Back This Week

Welcome to the inaugural Quickstarter Roundup, a shortlist of currently-running comics crowdfunding campaigns that are worth your time and money. If you have tips about current or upcoming comics crowdfunding projects, you can reach out at quickstarter at ckstewart dot com.

On to this week’s round-up.

MINE! A Comics Collection to Benefit Planned Parenthood

Top literary and artistic talents are coming together to support the constantly besieged Planned Parenthood with a brand new reproductive rights anthology. Mine! features stories from writers like Tee Franklin (Bingo Love), Rachel Pollack (Doom Patrol), and Sarah Kuhn (Heroine Complex), with art by illustrators Fabian Lelay (Jade Street Protection Services) and Devaki Neogi (The Skeptics). Already more than 50% backed with two weeks to go, and promoted by some of the biggest names in comics right now, Mine! is a safe bet for full funding. The project is up front about its communication with Planned Parenthood and what’s most likely to cause delays, meaning it’s easy to understand where your money is going, how the project works, and reasons for potential delivery date changes. Reward tiers start at $5, with a digital copy of the book available for $10 and a digital/softcover bundle available for $25. This campaign ends on September 15.

The Sun and the Wayward Wind

Managed by the Dandelion Wine Collective, The Sun and the Wayward Wind is a full-color anthology focused on reimagining North American legends and lore. This anthology includes some incredibly talented illustrators, including Ashanti Fortson (Galanthus) and e. jackson (Baby, Summer Fright Nights). Donation tiers start at $15 for a DRM-free PDF, which includes a digital wallpaper. This is the Collective’s first project, and they’re only at $8k of $32k with two weeks left to go, but the campaign states they have all materials and vendors lined up to start production as soon as the project wraps, and the sample art is so beautiful it’s worth at least chipping in a dollar or two for the lower-level reward tiers for a shot at purchasing the full anthology at a later date. For those looking for innovative and original indie comics to add to your shelves, this Kickstarter is worth chipping in for and signal boosting. This campaign ends September 14.

Gothic Tales of Haunted Love: A Comics Anthology

This is one of the safest bests in this round-up. Gothic Tales of Haunted Love is already fully funded and managed by Bedside Press founder Hope L. Nicholson, who has a number of high profile, successful campaigns under her belt. Gothic Tales brings together powerhouse creators like Sarah W. Searle (Ruined), Mel Gillman (As the Crow Flies), and Hien Pham (It Will Be Hard, an 18+ “choose your own gentle smut” graphic novel also currently funding on Kickstarter) for tales of heroes and villains, romance and tragedy, across worlds and decades. If you backed The Other Side anthology last year, this is a great (though unrelated) companion to that, with genre-hopping tales for romantics of all stripes. The PDF is available for $15CA, and the digital/physical bundle is a little pricier at $30CA but includes a 4×6 print and exclusive bookplate. This campaign ends on September 12.

Small Press Expo Announces Programming Schedule for SPX 2017

Small Press Expo has announced the Programming Schedule for SPX 2017. SPX is continuing the festival’s established tradition of rich, thought provoking programming featuring leading comics artists and critics in conversation. As in previous years, the Programming Schedule features 22 sessions with two simultaneous tracks on both Saturday and Sunday, September 16 and 17.

Here are some highlights:

  • Tillie Walden discusses her new work, Spinning, focusing on her decade spent in competitive figure skating, with Small Press Expo executive director Warren Bernard.
  • Jillian Tamaki (Boundless) and Eleanor Davis (You And A Bike And The Road) are two of our generation’s greatest cartoonists. Both create beautiful imagery while telling incredibly poignant stories which are thoughtful and evocative. With moderator Jim Rugg.
  • Moderator L.Nichols will explore the recent movement in comics toward exploring genderfluidity within a science-fiction context, with an emphasis on technology and utopian ideals. Panelists Jeremy Sorese (Curveball), Carta Monir (Secure Connect), Kevin Czap (Futchi Perf) and Rio Aubry Taylor (Jetty) will each discuss how their own work fits into this bold new vision of comics,
  • Gene Luen Yang has distinguished himself as a prominent voice in youth-friendly literature through his books American Born Chinese and Boxers and Saints. He continues to inspire young readers by championing diversity as the recently appointed National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. Join us for a very special conversation with Gene as we spotlight Reading Without Walls. Moderated by Johanna Draper Carlson.
  • Join moderator Jared Gardner, publisher Raighne Hogan and an array of 2dcloud artists as they celebrate and recount the history of this cutting-edge indy publisher and look toward its future.

Additionally, several panels will focus on the cartooning into today’s political climate:

  • Tom Spurgeon moderates political cartoonists Ann Telnaes, Matt Wuerker, Keith Knight and Ben Passmore as they explore the role and responsibility of being a political cartoonist in a time when the freedom of the press is under attack.
  • In a world that seems increasingly difficult to satirize, come see how cartoonists Tommi Musturi (Simply Samuel), Aaron Lange (Trim), Sabin Cauldron (Maleficium), and Katie Fricas (The New Yorker) use different comedic tools to address the absurd, the awful and the just plain ridiculous. Moderated by Heidi MacDonald.
  • Celebrants and detractors alike are chewing on the fact that Donald Trump was elected president. Shannon Wheeler and Robert Sikoryak will help you swallow. In their books Sh*t My President Says from Top Shelf and The Unquotable Trump from Drawn & Quarterly (respectively), these two cartoonists illustrate Trump’s words for comedic effect and insight.

The complete schedule with times and descriptions can be found online.

 

Books Debuting at Small Press Expo 2017

SPX will see over 170 different graphic novels and comics making their publishing debut at this year’s show to start off the fall book buying season. This year, SPX will be held September 16 and 17, 2017 at the North Bethesda Marriott Hotel & Conference Center. A complete list of debuts, including cover images and publishing information, can be found on the SPX web site.

Here are some highlights of the new releases to debut at SPX 2017:

Language Barrier shows real meaning behind emojis, the subtext of sexts, the financial cryptography of flats and pumps, and more are revealed in this witty and wonderfully drawn collection. Hannah K. Lee‘s first book from Koyama Press melds elegant typography, beautiful illustration and trenchant text to make an acerbic art book.

House of Women from Fantagraphics is Sophie Goldstein’s second solo graphic novel, following 2015’s The Oven (AdHouse Books), which appeared on many year-end “Best of” lists, including Publisher’s Weekly and Slate. In this graphic novel, science fiction meets psychosexual drama when four women try to bring “civilization” to the natives of a remote planet on the fringes of the known universe.

The penultimate issue of Jason Lutes long-running series from Drawn & Quarterly finds Silvia Braun and David Schwartz joining forces to sabotage a neighborhood National Socialist outpost, while Marthe Müller says her final farewells to the city where she has come of age. And as darkness manifests in the alleyways of the underclass and estates of the elite, Kurt Severing glimpses the worst of all possible futures.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Behind is the 3rd collection of Keith Knight‘s nationally-syndicated comic strip the Knight Life. The hilarious new book follows the trials and tribulations of America’s foremost Gentleman Cartoonist and Star Wars Prequel-Denier, as he navigates family life, racism, giant spiders, and comic nerds.  Seen in such fine papers as the Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Diego Union Tribune and the Boston Herald.

Acclaimed cartoonist Shannon Wheeler (The New YorkerGod Is Disappointed in YouToo Much Coffee Man) transforms Donald Trump’s most revealing tweets into razor-sharp cartoons, offering a subversive and illuminating insight into the mind of the most divisive political figure of our time. Whether you love him or hate him, this take on Trump will help you come to grips with the man and his ideas thanks to Wheeler’s signature mix of slapstick and sophistication.

Laura Terry‘s adorable woodland creatures return in Adorable Empire Vol. 2.  In their second adventure, they fend for themselves on the mean streets of Manhattan. Will they survive? Can they make it on their own? Will they be taken to the underworld by an army of giant roaches? The only thing for certain is that there will be destruction and it will be chockfull of cuteness.

Small Press Expo (SPX) is the preeminent showcase for the exhibition of independent comics, graphic novels, and alternative political cartoons. SPX is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit that brings together more than 650 artists and publishers to meet their readers, booksellers, and distributors each year. Graphic novels, mini comics, and alternative comics will all be on display and for sale by their authors and illustrators. The expo includes a series of panel discussions and interviews with this year’s guests.

The Ignatz Award is a festival prize held every year at SPX recognizing outstanding achievement in comics and cartooning, with the winners chosen by attendees at the show.

As in previous years, profits from the SPX will go to support the SPX Graphic Novel Gift Program, which funds graphic novel purchases for public and academic libraries, as well as the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF), which protects the First Amendment rights of comic book readers and professionals.

Small Press Expo Celebrates 10 Years of Koyama Press

Koyama Press has been making comics and art books for a decade, and Small Press Expo is helping to celebrate their anniversary year with them with an incredible slate of comics, programming and a number of other celebration surprises. Koyama Press guests will include Connor Willumsen, Noel Freibert, Eleanor Davis, Sophia Foster-Dimino and more.

Founded in 2007, Koyama Press is a Toronto-based small press. Our mandate is to promote and support a wide range of emerging and established artists. Projects include comics, graphic novels, art books, and zines. We are known for our alternative edge and diverse range of titles that include a myriad of genres from autobiography to photography, from horror to humour, and more.Small Press Expo is proud to present the following programs highlighting the 10 years of Koyama Press:

Small Press Expo is proud to present the following programs highlighting the 10 years of Koyama Press:Kick Ass Annie-

 

Kick Ass Annie-versary: Koyama Press Turns 10
Annie Koyama has championed the work of emerging cartoonists for 10 years. As a leading publisher of underground comix, her roster features the work of many of today’s top names in the indie comics scene, including Michael DeForge, Aidan Koch, Alex Schubert, Daryl Seitchik, and many more. Join KP alumni, new and old, in a very special panel spotlighting one our favorite curators of small press cartoonists and their work. Moderated by Rob Clough of High-Low.

Koyama & DeForge: Lose, Everybody Wins
For nearly a decade, Annie Koyama (Koyama Press) and Michael DeForge (Sticks Angelica, Folk Hero) have been wowing readers with their strange and darkly humorous, ongoing anthology series, Lose. Join us for a special conversation with a celebrated, master cartoonist and an award winning publisher as we take an insightful look at one of small press publishing’s greatest partnerships. Moderated by Ryan Sands of Youth in Decline.Full lineup as well as times and locations to be announced in the coming weeks.

Full lineup as well as times and locations to be announced in the coming weeks.

 

Additionally, Koyama Press will be debuting its Fall 2017 releases at Small Press Expo, including Sophia Foster-Dimino‘s Sex Fantasy, GGs I’m Not Here, and Patrick Kyle‘s Everywhere Disappeared.

Sophia Foster-Dimino’s Sex Fantasy began as a loose, ephemeral zine that was produced in limited editions. These small comics in both size and length are esoteric and immensely personal. Covering a span of four years, the comics collected here build a relationship that is deeper than their elegantly drawn surfaces.In GG’s I’m Not Here, a young, second-generation woman wanders through her city and memories encountering the world through a camera’s lens; her independence pulled by the gravity of familial responsibility. She drifts until she encounters what could possibly be her potential self.

In GG’s I’m Not Here, a young, second-generation woman wanders through her city and memories encountering the world through a camera’s lens; her independence pulled by the gravity of familial responsibility. She drifts until she encounters what could possibly be her potential self.A keen observer of the absurd, Patrick Kyle’s stories in Everywhere Disappeared defamiliarize the machinations of life, work and art with droll dialogue and his angular, humanely geometric drawing and sci-fi settings that recall set design more than satellite images. Kyle’s figures may be foreign, his settings strange, but his stories resonate deeply.

A keen observer of the absurd, Patrick Kyle’s stories in Everywhere Disappeared defamiliarize the machinations of life, work and art with droll dialogue and his angular, humanely geometric drawing and sci-fi settings that recall set design more than satellite images. Kyle’s figures may be foreign, his settings strange, but his stories resonate deeply.

Ghost City Comics Competition Launches May 20

Ghost City Comics is launching a comic competition on May 20. Founded by Michael Ruiz-Unger and Tucker Tot the contest was inspired after the two created their own comics and found it difficult to be seen by a publisher or facing the difficult work of building their own fan base.

The hope is through this competition, indie creators will have a new way to “get their work out there,” and a “chance to have their comics read by industry professionals, win some cool prizes, and get reviewed and promoted across the internet.”

This is the first year for the competition and there’s three categories “1 Page Comic,” “Short Story,” and “Single Issue.” There’s also awards for “Best Writing,” “Best Artist,” “Best Colorist,” and “Best Lettering.” Prizes include cash prizes, gift cards, and reviews from publishers and comic creators.

You can find more details on their website and good luck to all of those entering!

 

Review: Those Dark New Hampshire Woods Vol. 1

Released in 2016, Those Dark New Hampshire Woods. Vol. 1 by Desmond Reed is an interesting indie comic focused on the unsettling lives of an ever-expanding hoard of creeps living in the woods.

As the comic progresses the weird is added upon the weird as the comic itself is broken into multiple stories that eventually come together at the end. Each story is familiar and plays off each other in a way with a slight twist on an aspect found in each. It’s strange in a good way resulting in an experience that can’t be found in mainstream comics.

Reed’s work in both story and art reminds me of a combination of Gilbert Shelton’s The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers and R. Crumb with a little Harvey Pekar thrown in there for good measure. The art is the draw with a style that stands out from mainstream offerings and creates a look that perfectly fits the creepy world that Reed has created. It’s not completely unique as it does remind me of a few other artists, but it’s a style you just don’t see a ton of in mainstream comics, mostly relegated to indie offerings where the art is as experimental as the story.

This is an odd one that had me both enjoying the read and scratching my head trying to figure it all out. There’s a second volume released already and you better believe I want to see what else Reed does with these characters and style. For those into indie comics, this is one to check out as it feels unique in every way.

You can purchase the first two volumes now.

Story: Desmond Reed Art: Desmond Reed
Story: 7.5 Art: 9.0 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Read

Graphic Policy was provided with a FREE copy for review

Review: AA Squad #1

aa-squad-coverEvery now and then a comic comes into my inbox that I have absolutely no preconceived notion of what it is, and unless there’s a half interesting name or elevator pitch then sometimes I don’t always read it (usually it’s a case of “oh.. that could be cool. I’ll read that later,” but then life happens and I never get back to it.

I don’t remember what it was that made me want to read AA Squad #1 from Rob Wolinsky, other than maybe the opening of the email; the “Hello time travelers” immediately spoke to my fascination with time travel, so I dropped the review I was writing and opened up AA Squad #1.

It was absolutely nothing like I expected.

The comic focuses on a squad of time police who have to correct small aberrations in the timeline, key word being small. These guys aren’t the most decorated team, and are thought of and treated more like the Great Lakes Avengers as opposed to the actual Avengers. We’re introduced to the existing squad by the new guy Luke Adam Bean, and through him we see just how routine saving the time line has become for the others.

AA Squad #1 is two things right off the bat; charming and funny. As I said earlier, time travel is one of those things that will always intrigue me, but what I didn’t expect was how entertaining the comic would be. I genuinely found myself laughing at several points as I read this, both from Wolinsky’s writing, but also from the visual gags from artist Chunlin Zhao. Speaking of the art, there’s an almost manga-like feel along with a slight dash of stylized Western flavour that combine to give the art a very unique feeling that really works for this comic.

As far as first issues go, this is a fantastic introduction to a new story, and I can’t wait to read the second issue.

If you’d like to purchase a digital or print version then you can do so here.

Story: Rob Wolinsky Art: Chunlin Zhao
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8 Recommendation: Buy

Graphic Policy was provided with a FREE copy for review

Raise $ for the ACLU by shopping with Birdcage Bottom Books

Birdcage Bottom Books is committed to ensuring that everyone’s voice is heard and that everyone is treated fairly and equally. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has worked for over 100 years to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

For the month of February, when you buy any products from BBB or any of the following artists/publishers, 50% of the sales will be donated to the ACLU:

ALCHEMY COMIX/Jonathan BaylisJeffrey Lewis
Pat BarrettJesse Londergan
Josh BayerAlec Longstreth
Marek BennettJonas Madden-Connor
BIGUGLYROBOT PRESS/Adam PasionDaniel McCloskey
BIRDCAGE BOTTOM BOOKS/J.T. YostJustin Melkmann
Kevin BudnikBen Mitchell
ASTRO PLUS PRESS/Josh BurggrafChris Monday
Kevin CannonHazel Newlevant
William CardiniNINTH ART PRESS / Dan Mazur
Aaron CockleAlabaster Pizzo
CZAP BOOKS/Kevin CzapiewskiAnsis Purins
Glynnis FawkesDesmond Reed
Hugo FitzgeraldRETROFIT/BIG PLANET COMICS/Box Brown
Mike FreiheitROBOT PUBLISHING CO./Robert Goodin
Katie FricasR. Sikoryak
Tatiana GillHolly Simple
Delaine Derry GreenSam Spina
GRINDSTONE COMICS/L. NicholsWhit Taylor
Ayun HallidayMeghan Turbitt
HIC & HOC PUBLICATIONS/Matt MosesSophia Wiedeman
Paul HoppeJess Worby
Gideon KendallEddie Wright
KILGORE BOOKS/Dan StaffordJeff Zwirek

bbb-aclu

Wednesday Comic Rally: Libby’s Dad

libbys_20dad_20cover_20small_originalPublished by Retrofit Comics, the comic is a beautifully drawn and colored indie comic that’s engrossing and entertaining exploring youth and how rumors can spin out of control and shape reality.

The story is basically a few girls at a pool party who begin to discuss why one of their friends aren’t there. It’s best to not reveal too much and see for yourself to see where the story goes. You never know exactly where that is.

Davis does an amazing job building the story throughout the comic and gets it to a point that you’re not sure what to believe until you get to the ending… and it’s a hell of a twist that had me gasping. It’s masterful storytelling at a great pace that captures the essences of sleepovers and kids chattering.

This is a perfect example of a comic where the less said the better because part of my enjoyment was not knowing what the comic was about and feeling the tension build as I didn’t know where things were going. Is this a simple story of kids playing telephone? Is this going to be a bloodbath? Is this a story about abuse? It’s wonderful storytelling.

The art too is fantastic with a style that’s hard to describe. The color choice is almost like crayons, it’s unique and absolutely fantastic adding to the childlike aspect of the story.

Libby’s Dad is an amazing example of indie comics and one folks should check out. Retrofit Comics puts out amazing comics and this is a fine release to show off how some of the best comics are being produced by indie and small publishers. Another home run for Retrofit and a fantastic comic by Davis.

You can by the comic now through Retrofit Comics’ website in print or as a PDF, from Things From Another World, or from Amazon.

 

 

 

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Sharknado Director Anthony C Ferrante to Tackle Comic Series Farway Canyon

farway-canyonAnthony C Ferrante, director of the iconic Sharknado films, has selected Farway Canyon as his follow-up genre project. Based on the independent comic book series written and published by Steve Hillard and Dennis Nowlan, Ferrante will develop the project as a television series, along with Hillard’s partner in “The Chronicles of Ara” franchise, Joel Eisenberg.

Farway Canyon is a take on the great sci-fi monster flicks of the 1950s and 60s. The story centers on a group of idealistic college students who investigate a lost Cold War project more secretive and potentially threatening than Area 51.

The comic series and its television adaptation is an homage to movies like Them, Godzilla, Forbidden Planet and even Dr. Strangelove.

Ferrante and the team expect to pitch Farway Canyon beginning in January.

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