Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Sweet! Celebrate! (Get To Work!)

I don't think I could call myself a comics blogger without mentioning the San Diego Comic-Con that happened over the weekend.  Though I hear stories that it's become a playground for video game releases and blockbuster movie swag, it is still the spot where they hand out the coveted Eisner Awards.

This book won the 2013 Eisner for "Best Reality-Based Comic."
If you don't own it already, you should!
The Eisners!  They are the Oscars of the comics creating world.  And this is the second year I've been able to bask in hometown pride.  Last year, Seattle cartoonists David Lasky and Frank Young brought home the Eisner for "Best Reality-Based Comic" for their graphic novel The Carter Family: Don't Forget This Song.   I highly recommend it, and you can read more about it at Carter Family Comics:  Don't Forget This Blog!  

THIS year,  Fantagraphic swept the Eisners!

Artists and stories published by the Seattle-based comics company took home three top awards.  The Fantagraphics wins are particularly poignant not only because of the passing of Fantagraphics publisher, Kim Thompson, this year but also because many believe recognition of Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez - the creators of Love and Rockets - is long overdue.

I copped this image of Gilbert and
Jaime Hernandez from the
Fantagraphics blog, here!
Fantagraphics has an excellent write up about it on their own blog, here.

I am personally very excited that Jaime Hernandez was awarded "Best Artist of the Year."  He created the character Maggie for the series "Music for Mechanics."  She was a teenage female latino punk mechanic, and I related to her a great deal as a teenage female mixed-Native goth arc welder. 

If the character correlations weren't strong enough, I'll let you in on a secret.  I currently go by my middle name, Noel, but my first name is actually Margaret.  No really, Maggie and I share the same first name.  So, there you go.  I often felt like Jaime was somehow eerily ghosting my life is some of Maggie's stories.

All "WOW-that-character-is-just-like-me!" stories aside, though, Jaime's artwork is incredibly well-executed.  It's rare to find that great of a story-teller and artist in the same human being.

I'm celebrating my own small win, this weekend.  No Eisners, but my story Shipyard Espionage has been accepted for publication by the Indie Ladies Comic Anthology for 2014.  It rounds out this year's projects nicely and will give me another publication I can offer at my table at Short Run in November. 

(Public Service Announcement:  BOTH Short Run applications and Indie Ladies Comic submissions close on July 31st.  If you read this on the Tuesday I publish it, get thee to their application sites!)

A portrait of my former self drawn into Shipyard Espionage (right)  as
Maggie the Mechanic from Love and Rockets (left, by Jaime Hernandez).
I put a lot into the story Shipyard Espionage.  It's a 7-page autobiographical story about working in a large shipyard in Bellingham.  It's a story about work and art.  I'm hoping it will serve as a calling card for what I want to do with my graphic novel.  And because it's about my days as a welder, I drew an homage to Maggie the Mechanic on the 2nd page.  To be truthful, I feel like I'm going to have to give Jaime Hernandez a visual nod at some point, so why not now, early on in my comics making life?

Now that Shipyard Espionage is done, I'm busy creating a short story on the history of the Chicago Picasso, a 50-Foot sculpture that Picasso donated to the City of Chicago when they built Daley Plaza in the 1960s.  I'll be writing about next week.  Not only is it an interesting story, but I'm telling it for an interesting project.

So back to it!

C-log posts on comics, publication and community every Tuesday.

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