I’ll be interviewing Shannon Wheeler at MoCCA, and vice-versa

This weekend sees the latest edition of the MoCCA Art Fest, at the Lexington Avenue Armory here in New York City. I’ll be there on Sunday, doing a panel with Portland, Oregon-based cartoonist Shannon Wheeler.

Wheeler’s recent book is the quite wonderful Oil and Water, about the BP oil spill and its effects on the region. Shannon and I will ll be interviewing one another about our work in comics, especially as it relates to our approaches to documenting tragedy on the Gulf Coast.

I’ve occasionally been asked if I ever thought of doing a sequel to A.D. Well, Oil and Water could be seen as that sequel—and done far better than I could have ever hoped to do. Anyway, it should be an interesting conversation. Please come!

Details:
Sunday April 29, 2 p.m.
Lexington Avenu Armory
68 Lexington Ave. (btwn. 25th & 26th Sts.)
“Room B” (downstairs)

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This Saturday: Reportage in Balloons: The Emerging Field of Comics Journalism

This Saturday, April 21, at 7:30 p.m., Union Docs presents “Reportage in Balloons: The Emerging Field of Comic Journalism.” Curated by Amélie Garin-Davet, the evening will feature comics journalists Seth Tobocman, Matt Bors, and myself, as well my Influencing Machine collaborator, Brooke Gladstone, in a discussion lead by comic critic Bill Kartalopoulos. Seth, Matt, Brooke, and I will all show examples of our work. The event will close with a book signing.

Union DocsUnion is a center for documentary art that generates and shares big ideas. They bring together a diverse community of experimental media-makers, dedicated journalists, critical thinkers, and local partners on a search for urgent expressions of the human experience, practical perspectives on the world today, and compelling visions for the future.

Saturday, April 21, 7:30pm. $9 suggested donation
Reportage in Balloons: The Emerging Field of Comic Journalism
Union Docs
322 Union Avenue
Williamsburg, Brooklyn

This Wednesday at the Rubin Museum: Karma-Con: Unveiling

The final component of the Rubin Museum‘s “Karma-Con” approaches. This Wednesday, April 18, the Rubin will unveil the finished illustrations of the “Cartoonists’ Wheel of Life.” After interacting with the art that inspires us, discussing the significance and merit of the Wheel of Life as an artistic image, working collaboratively in an open studio setting and individually in our own studios, artists Molly Crabapple, Sanya Glisic, Ben Granoff, Rodney Greenblat, Steven Guarnaccia, Michael Kupperman, Katie Skelly, and myself unveil our completed works as a unified Wheel of Life.

As I’ve mentioned before, my section is the world of humans. The human world is typically portrayed as one of suffering. These deprivations include:

  • hunger
  • thirst
  • heat
  • cold
  • separation from friends
  • being attacked by enemies
  • not getting what they want
  • getting what they don’t want

Humans also suffer from the general maladies of:

  • pain of childbirth
  • old age
  • sickness
  • death

A careful viewer will see examples of all these sufferings in my image, as well as allusions to the Occupy Wall Street movement (and a sneaky self-portrait of the artist).

The evening includes a Himalayan happy hour & spiral music, a pre-program tour of the Wheel of Life and second floor galleries, the unveiling of the new Wheel of Life and a discussion with the artists moderated by comics historian Christopher Irving, and a post-program tour of the accompanying exhibit Hero, Villain, Yeti: Tibet in Comics. And did I mention the whole evening is free?!

Karma-Con: Unveiling
Rubin Museum
Wednesday April 18, 2012 @ 7:00 PM

See below for a sneak-peek at my section from when it was in progress. And check out the Rubin’s page on the event for the full details.

Wheel of Life: Humans

Sari Wilson & I are teaching a comics class this summer in Provincetown

What makes a better combination than writing and art? How about summer and Provincetown? Or Sari and Josh? (*wink*)

Come experience all three this July on the tip of Cape Cod! Sari and I are teaching a workshop at P-Town’s Fine Arts Work Center from July 1–6. It’s called The Graphic Novel: At the Intersection of Writing and Drawing.

In his seminal work Understanding Comics, Cartoonist Scott McCloud writes, “The art form — the medium — known as comics is a vessel which can hold any number of ideas and images.” Our class will explore the dynamic realm of sequential art, and the ways that comics can produce powerful moments of frisson between words and images.

Some find their way to the form through their writing and others through their art; comics allows for both options. To that end, we as workshop leaders offer two perspectives—that of a cartoonist and that of a writer. We welcome confident storytellers in either, or ideally, both arenas. If you’re “just” a writer, we believe that you can learn to draw in a way that will serve your words.

As workshop leaders, we are most interested in the literary and the idiosyncratic, so if you’re looking to do a superhero, fantasy, or science fiction comic, this class may not be for you (unless you feel a strong personal connection to a story you want to explore through one of those genres).

Participants should have an idea for a graphic novel and preferably some existing notes, scripts, and/or art. We’ll explore the ideas and images you bring to the table, and through group feedback, generate ways you can further develop your concepts. We’ll also spend some class time on various brainstorming and collaborative exercises we’ve found useful in producing strong comics work.

Click this link to find out more about the program and how to register.

The INFLUENCING MACHINE paperback cover

IF-paperback-coverFor The Influencing Machine paperback cover, my publisher went in a very different direction, but it’s definitely eye-catching.

For comparison’s sake, here’s the hardcover design. Thoughts?

The paperback debuts May 8.