Married to Comics

Joe McCulloch is here this morning with the Week in Comics, his indispensable guide to the most interesting-sounding comics in stores. Spotlight picks this week include new titles by Chris Oliveros and Tommi Musturi.

Meanwhile, elsewhere:
Kayla E at Nat. Brut asked ten female and non-binary creators, including Carol Tyler, mickey z, Edie Fake, and Lauren Weinstein, to comment on the recent Angoulême Grand Prix controversy.

I created an iconic self portrait in the style of Queen Elizabeth I. It was an oil painting made with the most expensive and luscious pigments on Earth. In the royal balloon above the Queen’s (my) head, it says, “I am married to comics.” Elizabeth I once said that she was “married to England” as a way of creating the identity of Great Britain, which reminded me of my full commitment to the form, like nuns who become Brides of Christ. This painting, with all its symbolism, became my manifesto.

—Interviews & Profiles. Hillary Brown at Paste talks to Tom Hart about Rosalie Lightning, his memoir about the death of his daughter.

I wrote notes incessantly for five weeks after [Rosalie died]. I knew I would have to create a book, to help these emotions find form. I stopped taking notes when they began being repetitive, but also after the final incident detailed in the book. I felt, I had been presented with all the material to heal with. Then I had to go through the work of internalizing that healing. Drawing it took roughly three and a half years. I felt I was experiencing the aftermath again. It was hard, but it was my new reality. I couldn’t deny that reality. The work of drawing it was turning my face to it to acknowledge it.

Sam Thielman at The Guardian talks to Jim Woodring about his new book, Frank in the 3rd Dimension (which is pretty stunningly effective).

There’s just a lot of stuff I’ve decided not to do because either I don’t understand it or I can’t handle it. I don’t have much to do with sex in my work because it seems to me that sex takes everything out of the realm of thought and into the realm of passion and that’s not what I’m trying to depict. And I try to avoid things that are seriously disturbing.

I wrote that passage after I did a realistic charcoal drawing of my father standing at a workbench wearing a blood-spattered apron smashing up babies with a single-jack sledgehammer. I just did it to see if I could do it, and when it was done I showed it to my girlfriend at the time who was generally supportive of me, but when she saw that she just said, basically, “You’ve brought something of such unspeakable ugliness into the world, and I don’t know how you can justify it.” [...] what she said resonated with me and I didn’t want to be the author of something that would make people feel so bad.

—Craft. Comics writer Kieron Gillen created a master post containing all of his advice on scripting comics.

Charlie Hebdo. Last week began another Charlie Hebdo controversy, this time over a cartoon that many interpreted as racist and anti-immigrant. Tom Spurgeon gathered up some of the original commentary and provided his own. Apparently, the version of the cartoon that was spread on Twitter and social media was missing a headline and partner images that changed the context of the cartoon, though most likely this won't convince everyone. One of the most interesting responses I've seen came from the French media critic Dan Schneidermann, who wrote an open letter to Riss, the cartoonist behind the image, making the point that whatever Riss and Charlie Hebdo's point may have been, in the current situation, with Charlie's heightened profile, and the way its cartoons are now shared and read online, the magazine should adjust their approach if they don't wish to be misunderstood.