Lullaby

So very honored that Shenandoah Literary Magazine has given “Lullaby,” my new comic, an online home in their relaunch issue, debuting today. The issue also features an interview, in which I talk about my process and the thinking that went into this new piece.

There are print copies of “Lullaby” and I’ve just added them to my online store. I made “Lullaby” in response to the plight of the Southern Resident Killer Whales, whose population has been brought to fewer than 80 individuals as a result of our dams, pollution, habits, and policies. For the next week, I’ll be donating all money earned from sales of the print copy of “Lullaby” to the Center for Whale Research to support their efforts to help the Southern Residents. Get one for yourself and another for a friend! Thanks, everyone—and special thanks to Shenandoah’s editing team and interns.

In Between announcements!

In Between (Pleiades 2017) made its debut at the seventh annual Short Run Comix and Arts Festival this last Saturday, along with incredible new work by many others (highlights for me include Robyn Jordan’s “Whose Embryos” and Alexandria Grace Vickery’s “Thin-Skinned”). This year’s festival was a huge success and I was so proud and honored to have been a part of it.

Now that In Between is out in the world, I wanted to provide some information about scheduled upcoming events, related exhibits, and press (see below). I will be updating information as I learn more. In terms of the book itself, if you’d like to purchase directly from me, your copy will come signed with some additional cut paper treats. If you don’t order from me, please support your local bookstores and make requests from them. And for those of you eager to know how the Arctic Residency went, I will be creating a separate post soon. Thank you for following and for your support <3

Readings/Presentations
11/10/2017 Book launch party at Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery, Seattle, WA.
12/15/2017 Reading at Elliott Bay Books with poets E.J. Koh, Jane Wong, and Montreux Rotholtz, Seattle, WA
3/1/2018 Whitman College, Visiting Writers Series, Walla Walla, WA
4/6/2018 Keynote Speaker, Conference on Comics and Graphic Novels, Gainesville, FL
10/18/2018 Reading, University of Central Missouri, Warrensburg, MO
10/19/2018 Reading, The Writer’s Place, Kansas City, MO

Exhibits (featuring original art from In Between)
Art to Read (group show), SOIL Gallery, Seattle WA

Marathon (group show), Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery, Seattle WA

Press/Reviews
Seattle Weekly
Seattle Review of Books
The Stranger (starred event)

Fall Equinox Update

Happy autumn everyone! I could not have anticipated how rich with inspiration, surprise, and rejuvenation this summer would be. I am looking forward to what fall holds. Here are some news bits:

  • I leave for my residency in the Arctic in 6 days! I won’t have online access for much of the trip, but I hope to post photos on my instagram account whenever possible and I plan to write a long entry here when I return. I have made a tall stack of handmade paper to take with me, have been tinkering with my camera, bought some fresh drawing notebooks, and am sharpening my pencils and preparing my mind and heart for this journey. I am through the roof excited for this dream come true and open to what this place will gift me and my art. Thank you for your support!
  • I’ll return just in time to get ready for Short Run’s 7th annual festival! I’m honored to be a part of the SOIL exhibit that Short Run is curating (opening November 2nd). And I’m excited to debut In Between at the fest itself (November 4th).
  • Yes, In Between will be in bookstores soon! I received some very kind words from Paul Constant about the book in this feature in the Seattle Weekly.
  • I’m in the process of organizing a few book events. The first will be at Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery on November 11th. Save the date! More announcements on the way.

Be well and stay warm.

Hello from mid-May

Some big and small updates:

  • I am beyond excited to announce that Pleaides Press will be publishing a collection of my short comics this fall! Here is the cover:

    The book will include a few comics that are no longer in print, some older ones that I have never printed, and some new ones that I made especially for the book (including my UCR Residency project). Working with Pleiades has been a dream. We went through 8 proofs before reaching the final one and now are in discussions about paper. I can’t wait to see the book in print! Due out when I get back from the Arctic in late October.
  • I’ve been helping to plan The 8th Annual Comics and Medicine Conference for nearly two years now and I’m thrilled to say that it’s almost here! June 15th-17th. It should be a great weekend, with many events free and open to the public. If you can come out for any of it, please do. As incentive, check out the conference tote bag (art by ET Russian and gorgeously screen-printed by Independence Printage):
    And here is a sneak peak of the cover I made for the comix newspaper anthology that we’re putting together to debut at the conference (featuring 28 contributors!):
    Come on out!
  • Finally, I will be tabling at Olympia Comics Festival in a couple weekends and then CAKE the weekend after that. Find me! I’ll have a couple more announcements related to both of these fests soon.
  • As soon as the Comics and Medicine conference is over, I’ll turn my attention to promised commissions and other projects. I’m still taking requests if you’re interested. Thank you so much.

Be well.

April Hello

Hello.

As I write this message, the sun is trying very hard to break through the clouds here in Seattle. My month of taking in the Riverside sunshine spoiled me! It was an incredible residency and I will hold it in my heart for some time.

When I returned, I almost immediately boarded another plane, this time bound for Chicago, where Comic Nurse M.K. Czerwiec was debuting her graphic memoir, Taking Turns: Stories from HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371. I was invited to interview M.K. for the opening festivities:

Photo credit: Grace Pisula

It was a heart-warming night. The nurse who hired M.K. on the AIDS unit in the 90s was in attendance!—along with many of her friends, family members, colleagues, and fans. You really should read this book! It is a profound and necessary archive. I described it to M.K. as a blessing.

Next week, I’ll be returning to the Sou’Wester in Southern Washington for Short Run’s 3rd annual Trailer Blaze residency. I am eager to be away making art with some of my favorite people. My residency project will be a 4-page travel narrative (in the spirit of “Hitched” but set at sea) for Cold Cube Press. Cold Club’s risograph-printed publications are beautiful pieces of art and the invitation to contribute to their 2017 anthology was an honor. I am excited to create collage and cut paper work specifically with the riso-printing process in mind; I think this project is going to stretch and challenge my creative limbs.

Otherwise, my life has been consumed with planning the 2017 Comics and Medicine Conference. If you’re in the area, think about at least stopping by for the public programming. We’ll be announcing the schedule toward the end of the month.

Take care, everyone.

Riverside

I’m writing from sunny Riverside, CA where I’m very much enjoying my time as Artist in Residence at the School of Medicine at UCR. It’s been incredible so far. In addition to teaching a class on “Practicing Graphic Medicine” through the Medical School, I’m also collaborating with Dr. Juliet McMullin in designing future projects, as well as spending time working on my own art.

The class has been a lot of fun. Last week, we discussed how the practice of drawing can provide a new set of tools to help see clinical situations and patient experience with a keener and slower eye. On the first day, I led the students through a “blind drawing” exercise, asking them to draw portraits of each other in pairs without putting their eyes on the paper in front of them. Here, I asked them to shift perspectives by moving around the room, standing up, or turning to face a different direction:

For the remaining weeks of the course, I will be guiding them to create their own comics about their experiences in clinical settings. I’m eager to see what they come up with.

As a part of my residency, I will also be delivering a talk this Thursday:

I’m excited to give this talk, though I admit to not having any solutions or conclusions to draw just yet—no sure answers about the role of art and comics in seeing us through these Trump years. At the same time, though, I do appreciate and want to emphasize that we’re all still figuring it out—and that there is no one fit to address where the world is (there never has been). Right now, I’m wanting art that helps us see and listen to each other (perhaps a running theme here?). Here is a page-in-progress from a short series that I have been working on—an exploration of what my patriotism feels like these days:

Finally, being back in California has been unexpectedly rejuvenating. I spent last weekend exploring Joshua Tree National Park. In my brief time there, I learned so much about the gorgeous, weird rock formations at the park; the threats that the park (and the multiple, unique systems of life it supports) faces from climate change; that much of the park is run on solar energy; that desert birdsong is one of the best sounds ever. We can’t let these lands that have been rightfully placed under protection to be gutted for the benefit of a few.

Stay well everyone. Thanks for stopping in <3