It’s always a treat to get to see one of your favorite artists in person. In this case, we got a chance to listen to one of Seattle’s hottest bands, Tacocat, and we got an in depth conversation between The Stranger’s Paul Constant and cartoonist Bryan Lee O’Malley. It was a very special night at Seattle’s Town Hall that included most of the creative team behind the graphic novel, “Seconds.” (Read my review here) On hand were drawing assistant Jason Fischer and colorist Nathan Fairbairn. Letterer Dustin Harbin couldn’t make it. O’Malley explained his absence as having to do with him being in North Carolina. It came off as funny and that’s how he meant it. Of course, he expressed his undying gratitude to all his creative team. Overall, the tone of the event was lighthearted, a bit ironic, and just what you’d expect from the creator of one of the coolest comics around, Scott Pilgrim.
Tag Archives: Seattle
Eleanor Davis and Esther Pearl Watson at Fantagraphics Bookstore this Sunday, Part of Georgetown Art Attack, July 12-13, 2014
For those of you in Seattle, this is a very interesting weekend. For fans of rising cartoonist talent, Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is the place to be this Sunday, July 13 from 3:00 to 5:00 PM. It will be your chance to meet Eleanor Davis and Esther Pearl Watson. This is part of Georgetown Art Attack weekend, July 12-13, 2014.
The Girl in the Cafe and an Ionized Environment
Art and fiction by Henry Chamberlain
She sat at her regular table on the second floor of her favorite cafe. It was the same old crowd. It was a steamy summer day. She had the whole world before her. There was the Space Needle right out the window to keep her company. She made herself comfortable. She wiggled her toes. Someone was overheard saying, “An ionized environment really helps.”
Here is a minicomic I recently completed that features Smith Tower, a Seattle landmark celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. In this comic, Smith Tower is a character in its own right. We follow a number of characters who are searching for answers. Among the searchers, two main characters emerge. We can’t be sure how these two are connected but, as fate would have it, their paths become inextricably linked. Whether that is cause for celebration or concern, remains a mystery. For fun, let me wax on for a bit on this new work, minicomics, and the art process.
Here is a preview of a project I am working on that revolves around the adventures of some animal characters in Seattle.
Easter turned out to be a very nice day. I’ve just walked around my Seattle neighborhood of Fremont to surmise the current situation, take the pulse of the zeitgeist, and just get some fresh air. There’s a flyer I’ve seen a number of times and I thought I’d share it with you. Apparently, there’s this neighborhood cat, Grey, who loves to take strolls and just wander about. But he keeps getting picked up by well-intentioned people who turn him in to the local shelter! I had friends who were constantly compelled to pick up neighborhood pets they were certain they were lost only to find out that these pets were simply doing their own thing, not lost at all. Anyhow, as the above flyer makes clear, Grey, and his owner, have been dealing with this for quite some time and so a flyer went up pleading with people to just leave well enough alone. Here his Grey’s message in its entirety:
Xero Shoes are a treat for your feet that are truly worthy of your consideration. At Comics Grinder, I cover the whole pop culture spectrum, particularly comics, along with an eclectic brew that includes everything from scotch eggs to electric cars. Lately, I’ve been focusing on minimal footwear in order to be as close to the ground, as close to being barefoot as possible. For this review, we shine the spotlight on Xero Shoes.
“Stars-N-You” is a gentle and fanciful minicomic about Leroy, a singer is search of a band in Seattle. It is written and drawn by Merrily Duffy. It is lettered and edited by Jaycee Baron. This comic has a refreshing way of conveying some street smarts in a low key. It’s about youth finding their way and struggling to make sense of life.
There’s a nice moment when Leroy and Patrick are going about their routine as employees of an indie record shop. Patrick is convinced that we delude ourselves with our self-importance. Leroy counters that we have the ability to be self-aware for a reason. It’s a totally inconsequential bit of conversation but fitting. Duffy does a great job of tapping into a twee subculture with her own twee vision. Every man in this comic is elfin and seems to aspire to be the next Ziggy Stardust.
It will be interesting to see how Duffy further develops her characters and stories. There is still work to do such as fine tuning panel composition and word balloon placement which can be hit or miss. I can see her crossing over to children’s books too. Comics can certainly use more of her dreamy style.
You can pick up “Stars-N-You #1″ for just 99 cents at ComiXology here.
It’s good and natural to have well known writers spend some time with total strangers. It’s all about context. The writer, whether a giant in a niche market or an all-around best-selling star, knows that life is a bit absurd, fame is fickle, and that the vast majority of people have no idea who he or she is. That stranger, and that stranger over there, and that one too, all gather at a meetup, and at least they know something about the writer. Most likely they’ve read some of his work. Most likely they aspire to be writers themselves. Ah, much common ground to work from. And so that’s what I got to partake in for a little a while, a special moment. Hugh Howey was in town. He had delivered a lecture at Amazon earlier in the day. That night, a meetup was organized at Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery, which made for an excellent venue. It was a big group that became a smaller intimate group of new friends gathered to share a few ideas with a great writer.
“A Night at the Sorrento and Other Stories” collects the work of a longtime cartoonist of the Seattle School, yours truly, Henry Chamberlain. We cartoonists grew up in the Generation X ethos of DIY, small press, and a pride for a certain alternative comics aesthetic. Make no mistake, just like alternative rock from the 1990s, there is something specific that is meant by alternative comics. To the point, these are comics that favor the offbeat and idiosyncratic. This spirit rings true today as it embraces an independent vision. Stay tuned. This collection will rock your world, very alternatively, in 2014.