JOE! is a sarcastic and mischievous 10-year-old, known among his loved ones for being the lil’ brat in their lives. Whether he’s with family, friends, or at school, Joe frequently finds his way into trouble. He usually has a smart-aleck response to get him back out of it, but that doesn’t always work. This kid is definitely the poster child of punishment.
This comic provides an amusing look at the world through the eyes of one of its future citizens. Each strip is combined with imaginatively-exploited everyday storylines, which makes for a memorable read. Joe along with his family and friends, welcomes you to his world, in the hope of inspiring yours.
Set in the cutthroat world of the competitive New York fashion industry, the series takes a satirical look at what happens when Sam Tate, an MIT drop-out turned fashion assistant, uses technology to advance in haute couture.
Blending elements of comedy, adventure and sci-fi, Fashion Forward, is a tale of morality that will make readers laugh and sit on the edge of their seats as heroine, Sam Tate, embarks on a journey that may change the future of one of New York’s most celebrated industries.
The first print issue is due for release March 5th, keep an eye out!
Traci Todd is the Senior Editor of VizKids, the children’s imprint of Viz Media manga publishing.
Todd graduated from Northwestern University in 1995 with a degree in communications. She went to work as a content writer for Jellyvision, the software company behind the award-winning “You Don’t Know Jack” and the licensed “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” CD-ROM games, to which Todd contributed. She worked for both Oprah.com and Harpo Productions, Inc. writing materials based on the content and themes of the Oprah Winfrey Show, including an eLearning initiative.
Much of her work has been in an educational vein aimed at a wide range of ages, including researching and scripting an online Cognitive Psychology course and producing multi-curricular interactive LeapFrog books for children aged 4-7. She also developed and co-taught a course on “The Art and Innovation of the Children’s Book” for California College of the Arts during the Spring 2008 semester.
She has worked as a children’s book editor for McGraw-Hill, Heinemann Publishing, and Chronicle Books before going to work for Viz Media in 2008. At Viz, she spearheaded efforts to expand beyond translated Japanese material, including manga based on the Nickelodeon Voltron Force show and the Mr. Men and Little Miss series. They also licensed the original Italian Winx Club comics in conjunction with the cartoon’s broadcast on Nickelodeon.
(*yes, this is a day late because being a grown up sucks and I couldn’t brain after work yesterday)
Milestone Comics co-founder Michael Davis is curating Milestones: African Americans in Comics. Pop Culture and Beyond, an exhibit to be held at the Geppi Entertainment Museum in Baltimore in February of 2013.
And if you’re an artist—African-American or otherwise—he might just be interested in featuring your work:
Soon the process will begin to select the professional artists for the show. Some will be invited others will be asked to submit work for jury selection. Consider this my ComicMix reader jump start for any new artist out there who may want to submit work for the show before the official call for entries.
I want to showcase new creators who may not be published yet. The show will have a worldwide audience as it will be up for a year and the press coverage will be massive. The opening of the show will surely attract comics elite and powerful and will be a grand way for a new artist to have his or her work showcased.
The show is not just open to black creators. It’s a show about African-American impact in pop culture. I’m open to any art that features or has been influenced by the African-American experience….
I’m looking for creativity, excellence and above all voices with something to say.
To be clear, this is more of a “pre-call” than a first call for entries, so this is the time for artists to get their portfolios together. I’ll keep everyone posted as the process goes on!
Carol M. Burrell is a cartoonist and the editorial director of the Graphic Universe imprint of Lerner Publishing Group.
A native New Yorker, Burrell is an alumna of Cornell University, where she majored in Classics. She has also lived in Wales and Italy
In 2005, she launched her webcomic SPQR Blues (as Klio) an historical drama that takes place in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius. Most of the characters are based on the actual inhabitants of the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum, whose names are known from graffiti, inscriptions, and the records of a notorious (and unresolved) ancient lawsuit. She was nominated for a 2008 Glyph Awards Rising Star Award.
In 2008, she started working at Graphic Universe, where she has worked with such creators as Trina Robbins, Joëlle Jones, and Dylan Meconis.
As an artist, she cites Leonardo da Vinci, Hal Foster’s Prince Valiant, and Elfquest by Wendy and Richard Pini as her three biggest influences.
Leilani Hickerson is a freelance illustrator and comics creator.
She was born in the heartland of New Jersey in the year of 1983. She graduated in 2006 from The University of the Arts in Philadelphia. There she received her BFA in Illustration and the university’s most distinguished illustration award.
Patrice Aggs is an illustrator originally from Detroit, Michigan who works in the UK. She studied at St John’s College, Annapolis and City & Guilds Art School in London, and has illustrated more than 50 children’s books, including Philip Pullman’s Count Karlstein graphic novel, and worked in animation, including on The Snowman. In 2008 she drew The Boss, written by her son John Aggs, for The DFC, a comics anthology for children published by Random House. She is writing and drawing “What Will Happen Next?!” for The DFC’s spiritual successor, The Phoenix, launched in 2012.
She has also contributed to the Whores of Mensa and The Strumpet anthologies for adults.
Above is a comic by one Doris McClarty originally published in the October 1955 issue of Hep Magazine, a black magazine based out of Fort Worth, Texas. It was reprinted in the R. Crumb edited anthology Weirdo #6— along with a plea for help locating her and another Hep cartoonist (Butch Austin) so that he could pay them!
I’ve been able to find no further information that certainly links a person to this comic, though I did request a Social Security record for a “Doris N. McClarty Dav” who lived from 1930 to 2007 and was issued her SSN in Texas, but I’m still waiting for that to come. I also found the obituary for Doris Laverne Davis-McClarty, who was indeed African-American. She also left behind children, though I have not been able to find them (not even on Facebook!)
I may yet have to go to the History Detectives about this, but I love this part of comics historianing. And if anyone has any possible leads (maybe vintage Hep issues, or even just a favorite genealogical resource), I would of course greatly appreciate it!
Black History Month is wonderful. But the best thing about our history is that it’s not going anywhere. It’ll be there for us whenever we need it. But the present? That can slip through our hands like water if we don’t pay attention—water that can thin the “gumbo” and dilute its flavor.
So, for the next twenty-eight days, I propose we kick off a celebration of Black Present Month by gifting ourselves with wonderful creations by inspired artists and writers currently putting pen to paper and digit to keyboard. What’s out there now that we can pluck from the shelves or add to our feeds?
And for those of us who feel the drive to create as well as consume? Well, a Black Future Month is in order. The pot’s waiting.
Cheryl Lynn is the founder of the Ormes Society, an organization supporting black female comics creators, characters, and consumers. Her work has been invaluable to the development of the Black Creators category at the Women in Comics Wiki, and I support her proposal 100%.
Barbara Brandon-Croft (born 1958) is an American cartoonist. She was the first black woman cartoonist nationally syndicated in the mainstream press.
Brandon-Croft was born in Brooklyn, New York, and her father, Brumsic Brandon, Jr., was creator of the Luther comic strip which first appeared in the late 1960s. Brandon is an alumna of Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts.
Her comic strip, Where I’m Coming From, appeared first in the Detroit Free Press, and was acquired by Universal Press Syndicate in 1991. The strip features a cast of about a dozen women, who Brandon-Croft based on herself and her friends. The characters range in personality from the issues-conscious Lekesia to the self-absorbed, man-obsessed Nicole. The strip explores general themes of life and relationships as well as friendship. There have been two collections of her strips.
She has previously worked as a fashion and beauty writer for Essence magazine. Her illustrations have appeared in Essence, The Village Voice, The Crisis and MCA Records.
Joan Cooper Bacchus Maynard was a boss. She was an art director at McGraw-Hill in the ’60s, and thus had a more “respectable” job than Jack Kirby ever did. She cared deeply about black history and making sure children knew it, both by writing and drawing for Golden Legacy biographical comics and by spearheading the preservation of Weeksville. And I am 99% sure that she contributed to the only issue of All-Negro Comics in 1947 (and I have e-mailed the History Detectives to help me close that gap— fingers crossed!)
Hang on a minute— Alitha Martinez? You mean, the artist on The Mask in the Iron Man, one of my favorite Iron Man arcs? FANTASTIC. (BTW, why doesn’t she get more work? Get on that, oh followers of mine in the biz!)
So, I finally started reading Templar, Arizona. OMG you guys, I really don’t have the time to get sucked into a long-narrative webcomic, but the first arc is sooo good. And dammit, so is SPQR Blues! I am never going to get any sleep again.
Felicia D. Henderson is also a boss. Her career is amazing, and I really really hope she gets that Girl Genius movie made. And I will be looking forward to her run on Static! (Only wish Dwayne McDuffie was going to be around to read it too ;_;)
JASIKA NICOLE MAKES ADORABLE COMICS ABOUT DRINKING WINE OUT OF TEACUPS WITH KANYE.
28 days is really too short to celebrate all of these women, and the ones I didn’t even get to. Not to mention, how many don’t even have wiki pages yet. But that is the point of the month— to learn about the accomplishments of African-Americans, and also the rest of the diaspora, to reflect on (as someone put it on Awesome Shit Women Did) what’s gotten left out of the textbooks, and to go forth with new awareness of the world we live in. I’ll be damned if that list doesn’t get filled out by next year (and of course, you all can help!), and I would love to see it grow— either by new talent or rediscovery of creators past.
Next up: Women’s History Month! Gee, I hope I can think of something to do there.
Afua Richardson (also known as Lakota Sioux) in an artist best known for her work on Top Cow’s 2008 Pilot Season winner, Genius.
Richardson is self-taught as a comic artist. She cites Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing and Hiroaki Samura’s Blade of the Immortal as the comics that showed her what comics could be, and wanting the same feel in her work. Her first published comics work was a ten-page comic in the erotica magazine Sizzle. She was originally published under the alias Lakota Sioux, in honor of her Native American heritage.
Her client list includes Marvel, Image Comics, NBM Publishing, Humit, Pulse Music, Rhythm Bank Entertainment, and MBK Productions. Her work on Genius was nominated for the 2009 Glyph Awards, for Best Story, Best Artist, Best Female Character, Best Cover, and Fan Award. She also works as a singer/songwriter, a seasoned musician, graphic artist and a budding voice actor.
Marguerite Abouet(b. 1971) is an Ivorian-French creator best known for her graphic novel series Aya.
Abouet was born in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. At the age of twelve, Abouet and her brother moved to France with their great uncle. She currently resides in Romainville, a suburb just outside of Paris, with her husband, illustrator Clément Oubrerie (who illustrates her graphic concepts), and their young son.
She worked as a legal assistant in Paris while she wrote her first graphic novel, Aya. Before writing Aya, Abouet tried to write novels for young people, but she gave up in frustration with what she perceived to be the constraints put on the genre by the publishers. She has also quit her job as a legal assistant to concentrate on writing full time, including her two follow up graphic novels to Aya (Aya of Yop City and Aya: The Secrets Come Out). Aya is Abouet’s first published work. It is also her first venture into graphic novels, as well as a collaborative effort with her husband who used Aya as his first illustrating job in graphic novels.
She was influenced to do a graphic novel by Marjane Satrapi, the author of Persepolis. It also emerged from her desire to show an Africa with a focus on issues other than war and famine, which is typically what the Western media focus on in portraying Africa. Her characters go to school, trudge off to work, plan for the future and allow themselves to be ensnared in domestic entanglements on the Ivory Coast the same way they do everywhere else.
Abouet denies that Aya is autobiographical, except in the sense that it is the Côte d’Ivoire that she is familiar with. The characters are based on people she knew growing up, but the situations are purely fictional.
Aya won the 2006 Angoulême International Comics Festival Prize for First Comic Book and has sold over 200,000 copies in France. The Canadian publisher Drawn and Quarterly distributed the English language version in the United States. They have printed over 10,000 copies in the U.S., which is a significant number for a first time graphic novel in the United States. Abouet persuaded her French publisher to sell cheaper, soft-cover copies of the graphic novel in her native Côte d’Ivoire. An animated film is set to be released in 2011.