One of my favorite comics growing up was USAGI YOJIMBO. Its creator Stan Sakai is humble, hardworking, and perhaps the kindest person I’ve met in this industry. His wife has been suffering serious health issues, so an art auction fundraiser has been organized to aid the family with medical expenses.
Here’s my tribute – crafted this snowbound weekend in Portland. The inspiration was 1) the unrequited romance of Usagi & Mariko from the earliest 1987 issues of the book, along with 2) the tradition of Ukiyo-e woodblock prints (specifically “Two ladies conversing in the snow” & “A village in the snow” by Hiroshige), and finally 3) the snow-dappled tree framed by my studio window as the neighbor kids sled down their front yard.
To learn more about the fundraiser and the other artists involved, please check out the Cartoon Art Professional Society’s Paypal.
The work will also be colored by the amazing Dave Stewart and see print in THE SAKAI PROJECT book to be published by Dark Horse and Bongo Comics (July 23rd release).
After getting home from three weeks in LA, I have a couple events unfolding in the Portland area.
1) The local launch for First Second’s FAIRY TALE COMICS with cartoonist (and Laika storyboarder) Graham Annable at GREEN BEAN BOOKS. 1 PM on Saturday, September 28th (1600 NE Alberta Street, Portland). More on that anthology – a sequel of sorts to NURSERY RHYME COMICS – here.
2) A two-way stage conversation between Gene Yang and I to scour the crossover themes of our coming-of-age memoirs (AMERICAN BORN CHINESE) and historical, religious epics (BOXERS & SAINTS) at the WORDSTOCK literary festival. 3 pm, October 5th, Oregon Convention Center.
Hope to see you locals there!
recently posted my interview with Blutch
– an inspiring & influential cartoonist to myself and many others. The first of his books to be published in English – SO LONG, SILVER SCREEN
– is debuting this month from Picturebox
! Below is the the only photo I could find of Blutch and myself – at Angoulême
festival in January 2005. And there’s a smattering of Blutch’s prolific bibliography.
While working on Blankets, I poured so devotedly over Blutch’s pages that it emerged as unconscious swipes in my own work. Here’s just one sample where I mimicked him without even realizing – a common affliction in young, impressionable cartoonists.
And here’s a couple of portraits of Blutch from CARNET DE VOYAGE
. That 2004 visit to Toulouse, France is referenced often in the Boingboing interview. Treat yourself to Blutch’s new book finally in the US!
Thanks for your patience with the confusion and delay around the art auction to raise funds for flood relief in the Philippines. The fund raiser is finally active on eBay and bids close in a week. Here’s the link:
Hello, Blog-Readers, and thanks as always for your patience. As you certainly can relate, the summer months are chaos.
First off, it was a treat to see many of you at San Diego Comic-con, and thanks to the comic industry for awarding HABIBI an Eisner for Best Writer/Artist. Here’s a con photo with a great group of fans from the Philippines.
The Philippines have recently been hit hard by monsoon season flooding, and members of the comics community have started a fundraiser for aid, relief, and medical assistance for the hundreds of thousands of displaced people. As part of this, the original cover artwork for the new edition of BLANKETS has been donated. Details HERE.
As all of you know, I never sell original artwork, so this a rare exception that any piece is available. 14’x17″ India ink on Bristol board. If I have a chance, I’ll personalize a note on the back to the donor. Please, look into bidding to help raise funds for this crucial cause. Thanks!
Continuing on the themes of last week’s post, you’ll find a link to my acceptance essay for the PNBA award which explains the Hokusai
wave graphic. Here’s a shot of the award, and the man who presented it — noteworthy fantasy author & gentleman Terry Brooks.
On a Valentine’s note, OPRAH named BLANKETS one of the greatest love stories of all time. (?!?) (Bless her soul!)
And Aussie buddie Pat Grant released a new book named BLUE that I’m quite fond of.
Also, overlooked in that last post was a recap of London and Angoulême tour. London, as you know, is a charming city full
of deliciously polite folks. As for Angoulême, Drawn & Quarterly and Sarah Glidden do a great job of summarizing the festival.
Here’s myself with two of my favorite French cartoonists – Dupuy & Berberian!
Today launches www.habibibook.com. It’ll expand as reviews, tour dates, and my own contributions pour in. Check in to christen it now.
Tomorrow, departing at the earliest hour for the San Diego Comic-Con. Here’s my signing schedule to the best of my knowledge:
Wednesday, July 20th • 6:30-8PM Top Shelf Booth #1721
Thursday, July 21st • 11AM-NOON and 3PM-4:30 Top Shelf Booth #1721
Friday, July 22nd • 11AM-12:30 Pantheon Booth #1515
Saturday, July 23rd • NOON-1PM Pantheon Booth #1515 … 2:30-4PM Art of the Graphic Novel panel Room 24ABC
Sunday, July 24th • 10AM-11AM and 1PM-2PM Top Shelf Booth #1721
Top Shelf will have new hardcover and softcover editions of BLANKETS. Pantheon will have the Comic-con exclusive tri-fold poster and
some extra HABIBI goodies. In addition, I’ll participate in impromptu/casual signings across the street at TRICKSTER. That Art of the Graphic
Novel panel includes cartoon luminaries Chester Brown, Seymour Chwast, Eric Drooker, Joyce Farmer, Joëlle Jones, and Jason Shiga;
and is moderated by Tom Spurgeon of the COMICS REPORTER … (original stormtroopers photo presumably attributed to Michael Neel)
The new editions of BLANKETS are here in time for San Diego Comic Con (in stores in August). The hardcover is the exact same dimensions as
HABIBI so they’ll mesh nicely on bookshelves. Check the stamped gold foil and spotgloss. They both have fancy smyth-sewn bindings to sprawl
open in the sunny backyard. And that’s the trifold poster lounging with them. Hope you all are enjoying the summer. Thanks for checking in!
Happy summer, Blog-friends! My publisher has set up a Facebook page for me. I’m not directly posting there, but I can check in daily on your
generous comments. They’ll be up-to-the-moment news and a few contests and giveaways. Perhaps I’ll dabble in personal posts, but I don’t
want to neglect the DOOTDOOTGARDEN blog any more than I already do. The garden needs weeding, watering, and few more flowers planted.
At the drawing table, I’m juggling a handful of projects. Including:
a.) A collaboration with poet Kazim Ali for the CBLDF‘s Liberty Annual.
b.) Edward Lear’s “The Owl and the Pussycat” in comics form for the upcoming NURSERY RHYME COMICS from First Second Books (October 2011).
c.) And a tri-fold poster for San Diego Comic Con. (Chunky, Blankets, and Habibi merge)
Thanks to all of you for your patience. The HABIBI tour will be here sooner than later.
And an update for fans in the Philippines: It looks like I’ll make it to Manilla early next year. See you all soon!
Happy Friday, Blog-friends! Another month has slipped away since posting. A few of you asked if I’d attend ComicCon on Thursday,
and the answer is YES. Top Shelf will be debuting new editions of BLANKETS (hardcover & softcover) to match the dimensions of HABIBI.
Sechan asked about posters and prints, and though none currently exist, I promise to have some by tour time. The past few weeks have
been crazy busy with promo materials and foreign translations and tour mapping, and many of the destinations you’ve asked about — Spain,
Brazil, Toronto — are on the list. (Colombia… who knows?) Finally, some folks recognized my brief, but crazed cameo as the ringside announcer
in Menomena‘s new TAOS video. It’s directed by Alicia J. Rose who also snapped some promo photos of me, including this one in Astoria, Oregon.
That last sketch is a sneak peek of a contribution for Giant-Sized MADMAN. Thanks to you all for staying in touch!