Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Oct. 20: MASL comics panel

The fall meeting of the Maryland Association of School Librarians on October 20 will include a panel of local cartoonists including Jessica Sheron, Alexis Frederick-Frost and Matt Dembicki. The session, moderated by podcaster Matthew Winner, will “focus on creating graphic novels, storytelling through paneled art, and how to support instruction through the use of graphic novels.” 

Oct. 19: Cohen @ Heurich House Museum

Cartoonist Andrew Cohen on October 19 will sign copies of his comic “The Brewmaster’s Castle” at the Heurich House Museum for an event from 6:30-8:30 p.m. that include local comics-themed brewer Heroic Aleworks and Greg Kitsock, the founding editor of Mid-Atlantic Brewing News and contributing editor of Beer Advocate Magazine. The cost is $30 and includes beer, snacks and a tour of the historic home.

PR: 10,000 Sci-Fi items to be auctioned Saturday Oct 21 in Falls Church VA - The Brammer Collection

FOR INFORMATION: Catherine Payling,  Director Waverly Rare Books at Quinn's Auction Galleries; 703-532-5632 ext. 575







The Brammer Family Collection of more than 10,000 books, comics, ephemera

to be sold at Quinn's Auction Galleries


A treasure trove assemblage of early science fiction will be sold  October 21 when the Fred and Eric Brammer Family Collection  of books, comics and ephemera goes to auction at Quinn's Auction Galleries & Waverly Rare Books in Falls Church, Virginia.


An encapsulation of the collections of father and son duo, Fred and Eric Brammer, of McLean, VA,   the sale represents more than six decades of purposeful collecting starting with items from early science fiction and fantasy conventions in the 1930s. Fred, a member of the First Fandom, a group of lovers of the sci-fi and horror genres, amassed a collection of pulp fiction, comic books, ephemera, classic novels, short stories and cult hits starting before the Second World War As he traveled  the globe attending sci-fi conventions, Fred often purchased the newest works by burgeoning authors. Passing along his love of weird fiction to his son, Eric, the Brammer family eventually became staples at conventions sharing their passion for the genre and supporting then little known authors and ventures such as Star Trek.


After Fred's death Eric, a filmmaker and photographer, decided to bring his father's collection to auction for the purpose of using the proceeds to create a documentary examining the Brammer family story in the world of science fiction. His film will also show the influence and importance the members of the First Fandom had on contemporary science fiction and popular culture fandoms.


Highlights of the Quinn's sale will include a first edition of Foundation Series by Isaac Asimov, Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury and H. P. Lovecraft's The Outsider and Others. In addition to a series of rare and desirable first editions, the Brammer Family Collection boasts hundreds of golden and silver age comic books including Batman No. 181 with the first appearance of Poison Ivy; Captain America, No. 100, and the first appearance of Captain America in his own series; Fantastic Four No. 48, "The Coming of Galactus," and The Amazing Spider-Man No. 129, the first appearance of the Punisher, among many other important and early comics.


The auction will take place Saturday, October 21 at 11 am at Quinn's Auction Galleries, 360 South Washington Street, Falls Church, Virginia.




FOR INFORMATION: Catherine Payling,  Director Waverly Rare Books at Quinn's Auction Galleries; 703-532-5632 ext. 575 




Ann Telnaes on covering Trump

Comic Riffs talks to Brian Fies about his losses to California fires

Santa Rosa cartoonist draws 'a dispatch from the front' after his house burns down

Washington Post Comic Riffs blog (October 17 2017):
"A Fire Story," by Brian Fies. 2017

Wall Street Journal talks to Tom King about Batman...

... but it's behind a paywall.

Batman Shows His Softer Side

The Dark Knight is evolving, with writer Tom King seeing Batman as 'sort of a machine that turns pain into hope.'

By Michael Rapoport

Updated Oct. 16, 2017

Appeared in the October 17, 2017, print edition as 'batman takes on a more human dimension.'

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Big Planet's Jared Smith on Slate podcast...

...although I can't figure out how to listen to these on a computer...

How Does a Comic Book Store Owner Work?

Jared Smith talks about the weekly grind of bringing comics to readers.

Jared Smith.

Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Jacob Brogan.

Over the past six episodes of Working, we've been talking with writers and artists about how comics get made. In this episode, which you can listen to via the player above, we're looking at how they make their way into readers' hands.

This week, we sat down with Jared Smith, one of the co-owners of Big Planet Comics, a chain of four shops in the Washington area. Smith discusses the ups and downs of a job that finds him reading comics almost every day. Along the way, he leads us through a week in the life of the comics shop, from the labor that goes into unpacking boxes of new books every Tuesday to the daily effort of building relationships with customers. He also talks Big Planet's publishing partnership with Retrofit Comics, a project that finds him serving an editorial role.

Then, in a Slate Plus extra, Smith talks about the comics he eagerly reads every month. If you're a member, enjoy bonus segments and interview transcripts from Working, plus other great podcast exclusives. Start your two-week free trial at

Monday, October 16, 2017

SPX's 2dcloud panel

SPX 2017 Panel - Good Minnesotans and Mirror Mirrors: Ten Years of 2dcloud

Moderator Jared Gardner, publisher Raighne Hogan and an array of 2dcloud artists celebrate and recount the history of this cutting-edge indy publisher and look toward its future. Panelists Xia Gordon (Kindling), Margot Ferrick (Yours), Fifi Martinez (Deep Affection), and Laura Lannes (Mirror Mirror II) all debuted new comics at SPX 2017.

Shannon Gallant talks about leaving G.I. Joe for… G.I. Joe

By Mike Rhode
Shannon “S.L.” Gallant spoke recently on a panel on graphic novels at George Mason University’s Fall for the Book Festival. I last interviewed him in 2010 so it was about time to check in again. After the panel (which will be transcribed here in the future), we sat down for a quick talk.

You have just come off of what is supposed to be the longest run of an artist on the G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero comic book. How many issues did you draw?

I didn’t even count. I think the IDW guys said something like 70 or 75. I started on #161, which had a cover-date of November 2010, so that means I started before then timewise, and I just did my last issue three months ago, and that was issue #245. There were some fill-ins of various issues along the way.

You were mainly the penciler and didn’t ink yourself on the book?

Gallant inked by Earskine
The only thing I inked were covers. My first few covers were done by whoever the inker was on the book. Some were by Gary Erskine, and a couple were by Brian Shearer, but the last twenty or thirty or so that I did were inked by myself. That was the only inking that I did.

Larry Hama wrote the entire run that you worked on?

He did.

How did he give you the scripts? Was it thumbnails, or typescript? 

Larry works in the old Marvel style which is a springboard style – a synopsis of the page, rather than broken down on the page into panel-by-panel descriptions. He very rarely included any kind of dialogue, because he would script that later. It was basically just a synopsis of the page and he would say things like, “If I have more than one paragraph, consider the paragraph to be a panel,” but it wasn’t a hard rule. That’s generally how he worked.

So you’re leaving the main G.I. Joe title to do… another G.I. Joe title?
I am. It’s G.I.Joe versus the Six Million Dollar Man [jointly published by IDW and Dynamite]. It’s a period piece and I’m setting it in my head in 1981 so it’ll be between the end of the Six Million Dollar Man tv show and the beginning of the G.I. Joe cartoon. I’m modelling G.I. Joe more on the cartoon characters than on the comic book version. So the costumes are pretty much the same, but the characters backgrounds are slightly different.

Who’s writing it?

Ryan Ferrier. He’s done comics for a lot of companies, IDW and Dynamite included.

What kind of script is he giving you?

It’s more of a full script, panel-by-panel breakdowns with dialogue.

Who made the decision about when this was set it time?

It evolved out of everyone talking and deciding with Steve Austin being so set in the ‘70s because of the tv show and the fashions, and Dynamite has gone back from updating the character, to making it more like the classic character in most of their books. I wanted to do it [that way], and feel those books need to be period pieces. A lot of the G.I. Joe fans had issues when we started at IDW with the updating of characters and making everyone have cell phones, and computers, and laptops and iPads and so forth… so this is my way of doing a period piece. The research is one of the biggest hurdles for me on it.

Plus he’d be a Six Trillion Dollar Man now… You’ve said you do a lot of research. Since you’re setting this 35 years ago, are you doing a lot of research to see what buildings and cars looked like at the time?

I’m trying to. I trying to make sure that it at least feels like it’s set in 1981, as opposed to having people with iPods. You don’t want to make those kinds of mistakes. When I got the first script, there were references to an office building with computers on the tables, so I had a discussion with the editor, saying “Well, people didn’t have computers on their desk in 1981. There was a room you had to go to and use a computer.”

How many issues is it?

From what I understand it’s supposed to be four, depending on sales they may expand it.

You’ve also done work for American Mythology in Baltimore lately?

They do a lot of licensed properties. They do have some creator-owned stuff, but the work I’ve been doing for them is on their cartoon properties. They have the rights to Bullwinkle, Casper, Underdog… they started out with a license for Pink Panther and I did the Free Comic Book Day Pink Panther comic where he turns into Thor. Most of what I’ve done for them has been on their cartoon side, but they also do a Three Stooges comic and a Stargate comic.

Do you find it easy to switch styles between G.I. Joe and Pink Panther?

It’s something I’ve always had to do when I was working in advertising. I had to switch styles up a lot. That’s how I ended up as a staff illustrator which is pretty rare.  If they wanted a New Yorker-type comic style or something more realistic, or traditional advertising – that was something I was used to doing and I still enjoy. It keeps the batteries fresh.

Are you hoping to continue on the Six Million Dollar Man after this miniseries?

I enjoy the character. I wonder if it’s one of those things though. I read an interview with Adam Hughes once, about Star Trek, after he did the big Debt of Honor Star Trek graphic novel. He said, “No, I got that out of my system. I’m done with it.” So we’ll see if at the end of this if I’m over the Six Million Dollar Man.

Is there anything you would like to work on?

Dynamite has announced that they’re going to redo Swords of the Swashbucklers, and that’s a series I would love to get on. It was when I fell in love with Jackson “Butch” Guice’s artwork. I would love to do that because I love those characters. It was steampunky before steampunk was a thing. I was never into pirates until that but it’s got enough of a Star Wars feel to it. It’s a fun book.

Who’s writing that?

Marc Guggenheim, the producer of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow tv show.

Over the years at HeroesCon, you’ve become friendly with Butch?

Shadows drawn and inked by Gallant
He was introduced to me by our mutual friend Chris Sparks, who was friends with Butch for years and years. We email back and forth and are friendly acquaintances. I think he’s phenomenal. One of the things I really enjoy about his work – when I fell in love with it, back he was working on Swords of the Swashbucklers, and the work he’s doing now… if you look at his work then, and his work now, you wouldn’t guess it was the same person. Stylistically he has grown, but a lot of artists, when they hit a certain level, they plateau and they stay at that level and they don’t change. He’s still experimenting and trying different techniques. He’s gotten very obsessed with shadow work. To see his penciled pages and then to see what the final looks like… I still don’t know he makes that leap. I’ve asked him multiple times, “how do you approach your shadows, because what you’re penciling, and what I’m seeing in the final product, makes it almost seem like two different people did the book.”

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Flugennock's Latest'n'Greatest: "Your Home Should Be A Safe Space"

From DC's anarchist cartoonist Mike Flugennock:

"Your Home Should Be A Safe Space"

(Art promoting DCMJ's Oct. 31 protest at the headquarters of the Department of Housing and Urban Development)

Despite the personal possession and use of cannabis being legal in DC, residents of Federally-subsidized Section 8 public housing are prohibited from smoking in their homes. Because Congress prohibits DC from enacting Tax'n'Regulate and the DC government prohibits public consumption in bars and clubs, folks in Section 8 have the choice of risking immediate eviction and possible imprisonment by smoking in their homes, or smoking on the street and risking arrest for smoking in public.

It's no wonder Section 8 is often referred to as "prison you pay rent for".

SPX 2017 panels continue arriving on YouTube

SPX 2017 Panel - Architecture Of A Page

Moderator J. A. Micheline chats with four cartoonists–Tillie Walden, Sloane Leong, Iasmin Omar Ata, and Chris Kindred–to discuss their thought processes when it comes to page layouts, how structure can contribute to emotional content, and their major influences/go-to inspirations when constructing a page.

SPX 2017 Panel - Spinning With Tillie Walden

Tillie Walden, in her short cartooning career, has created some stunning, critically acclaimed stories. Her unconventional science fiction webcomic, "On a Sunbeam," was recently nominated for an Eisner for Best Digital Comic. Tillie's newest project, "Spinning," from First Second, focuses on her decade spent in competitive figure skating. This emotional graphic memoir, along with her other works and influences, is the topic of conversation for a very special panel moderated by comics historian and SPX executive director, Warren Bernard.

SPX 2017 Panel - Eleanor Davis and Jillian Tamaki in Conversation

Jillian Tamaki (Boundless) and Eleanor Davis (You And A Bike And The Road) are two of our generation's greatest cartoonists. Both create beautiful imagery while telling incredibly poignant stories which are thoughtful and evocative. The cartoonists talk in-depth about their storytelling approach, inspiration, and process. Moderated by Jim Rugg.

SPX 2017 Panel - Emil Ferris: My Favorite Thing Is Monsters

SPX is proud to feature cartoonist Emil Ferris in a rare east coast appearance. Her book, My Favorite Thing is Monsters from Fantagraphics, has garnered a lot of positive attention in the comics community and beyond. Legendary comics creator Art Spiegelman even dubbed her "one of the most important cartoonists of our time." Washington Post columnist Michael Cavna sits with Emil for an intimate discussion about her breakthrough debut graphic novel, being diagnosed with West Nile, and–of course–monsters.

SPX 2017 Panel - World Building From Reality

Compelling environments, idiosyncratic details, atmospheric flourishes. The ability to build worlds is often discussed with genre/fantasy stories, but what role does it play for adult comics grounded in reality? Ethan Rilly (Pope Hats), Gabrielle Bell (Everything is Flammable), Lauren Weinstein (Normal Person) and Chris W. Kim (Herman by Trade) discuss their personal approaches to building convincing worlds and evoking a strong sense of place. Moderated by Whit Taylor.

SPX 2017 Panel - Koyama & DeForge: Lose, Everyone Wins

For nearly a decade, Annie Koyama (Koyama Press) and Michael DeForge (Sticks Angelica, Folk Hero) have been wowing readers with their strange and darkly humorous, ongoing anthology series, Lose. This special conversation with a celebrated, master cartoonist and an award-winning publisher offers an insightful look at one of small press publishing's greatest partnerships. Moderated by Ryan Sands.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Roz Chast at Politics and Prose

...right before the blue screen of death...

A new ReDistricted story on Lincoln and Comic Riffs behind the scene report

Tomorrow: Two comics panels at Fall for the Book at GMU

October 14, 2017 @ 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm
Merten Hall, Room 1202, George Mason University
4441 George Mason Blvd
Fairfax, VA 22030
Kara Oakleaf

Bring the whole family for a celebration of comic books and graphic novels with artists S.L. Gallant, Paulina Ganucheau, Kevin Panetta, Jason Rodriquez, and Ben Towle. Gallant presents his artwork of a familiar hero figure as he is the longest running artist on G.I. Joe: An American Hero. Ganucheau and Panetta co-authored Zodiac Starforce, starring comic high school girls taking on the darkness of the earth. Rodriquez shares his graphic novel, Colonial Comics: New England, 1750-1775, and his revolutionary idea for exciting young adults to learn about the history of colonial New England. And Towle introduces readers to the coastal town of Blood's Haven, with an ocean full oysters and even oyster pirates in his graphic novel, Oyster War. Sponsored by Canon Solutions America

October 14, 2017 @ 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm
Old Town Hall
3999 University Dr
Fairfax, VA 22030
Kara Oakleaf

Join Jason Rodriquez, comic book editor and author of Colonial Comics: New England, 1750-1775, and artist Liz Laribee for a comic drawing workshop. This workshop will teach kids to create their own comics when they have a story to tell.  Sponsored by the Fairfax Commission on the Arts.

Oct 27: Animezing!: Galaxy Express 999

Join us for a FREE classic anime film at the JICC!
Join us for a FREE classic anime film at the JICC!
Galaxy Express 999
2017 marks the 100-year anniversary of Japanese animation. In celebration, the JICC is presenting a retrospective of landmark animated films!
Based on the long running Japanese manga series by Leiji Matsumoto comes Galaxy Express 999, directed by acclaimed anime veteran Rintaro (Metropolis, Neo Tokyo, X The Movie)!
Galaxy Express 999 (Three-Nine) is the name of a train which travels through space, beginning at Megalopolis Station on one end of the galaxy and terminating at Andromeda on the other. But the Galaxy Express is more than just a train, it's also a metaphor for life itself, with passengers constantly boarding, debarking, and dreaming along the way.
Tetsuro Hoshino is a youth who'll give anything to board the Three-Nine, including a promise to accompany a mysterious woman named Maetel all the way to Andromeda, the planet where, she tells him, he can get a free machine body to avenge the cruel death of his mother at the hands of the villainous Count Mecha. But nothing is as easy as it sounds, and Tetsuro is about to learn the true price not only for boarding the Three-Nine and avenging his mother, but for leaving his childhood behind, falling in love, and becoming a man.
In Japanese with English subtitles | Not rated | 1979 | 128 min | Directed by Rintaro© 1979 Toei Animation Co., Ltd.
Please note, this film contains scenes of violence that may not be suitable for young viewers.
Registration is required.
Halloween Special! Come in your Halloween costumes and Trick-or-Treat for Japanese candy at the JICC!
You are invited to
Friday, October 27th, 2017
from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM (EDT)
Japan Information & Culture Center, Embassy of Japan
Event venue map
This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required.
In the event of a cancellation, please contact us at

Doors open 30 minutes before the program. Program begins at 6:30PM.
No admittance after 7:00PM or once seating is full.

Registered guests will be seated on a first come, first served basis. Please note that seating is limited and registration does not guarantee a seat.

The JICC reserves the right to use any photograph/video taken at any event sponsored by JICC without the expressed written permission of those included within the photograph/video.
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