Cloudscape, at its heart, has always been about cartoonists coming together and finding community. Cartooning is an isolating art, but finding likeminded creators makes the whole thing feel a little less lonely. For over 10 years Cloudscape has been a physical space where cartoonists could gather on Wednesday nights and find people like them—people who love (and make) comics. In 2020, as we find ourselves more isolated than ever it’s important to carve out what space we can for community and camaraderie. We can’t meet in person, but we can meet online. Over the past 8 months we’ve been staying home and maintaining our distance, but we haven’t let the stop us from making new friends, sharing ideas with our peers, and cheering each other on as we create things that excite us.
Cloudscape meetings can now be found online—our official Wednesday night gatherings have switched to video chat, and we’ve created a discord for every day discussions, sharing, and critiques. If you’re looking to join, you can do so here—all are welcome. One of of liveliest channels in our discord is the “Topic of the Day.” In this channel our moderators pose a question, and our members answer. We love the discussions that come out of this channel and we wanted to share some of them with you!
WHY IS COMICS YOUR CHOSEN MEDIUM?
I got into comics because I wanted to explore more complex ideas with my drawings. With illustration, you only capture a single snapshot that’s open to interpretation, and comics gives me room to tell a full story, and express my point of view more with the use of dialogue and language. My love is for drawing first and foremost, and in comics, the drawings are the medium that carry my message and voice. I think the style of comics I want to make in the near future is where each page is a sensory experience, and can be viewed as a piece of illustration in itself.
As a preteen and early teenager I used to make movies. At some point I realized I needed actual social skills and charisma to make movies, so I gave up and did something else. Then around 2012 I took a critical theory class which focused on manga at the behest of who would end up being my wife. That’s what made me realize I wanted to make comics. I see it as similar to my old passion of filmmaking, but with less social interaction. And there ya go!
@Quinn0Matic I also spent my preteen years making movies! This was pre-youtube (thank god) so nothing my friends & I made ever made it out into the wider world. I think there’s a parallel universe out there where I went down the filmmaking path instead of comics. But I can make comics all on my own without having to rely on anyone else, so that’s certainly part of why I chose comics.
However comics really do have my whole heart. I often think of them more like a calling than a hobby or a job (although they have been both at various times). Even if no one is reading what I’m making, I still need to make it. It’s how I reflect & process what’s going on around me. You know? Even though I think I’m more of an artist than a writer, I think in my heart I’m a storyteller. Hence, like, making movies, and then switching to comics. I also think that comics are so fascinating bc they’re a specific codification of the world. Like, no 2 ppl are going to draw exactly the same & that’s a good thing. Comics give us the world/show us a world filtered through someone’s eyes in a way other mediums don’t quite reach.
I’ve always loved comics. Even as a child who didn’t know what a comic was, I used to draw pages of scenes where each page would change and progress the actions of the scene. Telling stories with pictures is just in my blood I guess. I think it’s an amazing medium to build empathy between the audience and the characters and potentially the author.
I’m also someone who was drawing comics before I knew what comics were. The only other medium that’s ever sustained any interest for me is prose, but in every piece of prose I’ve ever written I spent the whole time describing what things look like, so in the end comics makes more sense for me. I think at the start my motivation to pick comics was just that this was the medium that had both writing and drawing, but the more comics I drew the more I fell in love with the specific traits that only comics can do, or that comics can do best
If you’ve got a perspective to share, head on over to our discord. We’d love to meet you!