Comics in Transit: Post Pandemic Hopes

Art by Joni Taylor

An Outdoor Self-Guided Comics Walking Tour

Enjoy a walk around Granville Island and discover seven bus shelter sized comics drawn by BC comic artists. Each comic tells one stand-alone story from a Vancouver citizen, their experience of the pandemic and looks at how we can connect and find solace with others, and imagine a more resilient and compassionate future.

A Little Local Cheer

By Joni Taylor and Raymond Nakamura

Remember the 7pm celebration of gratitude for our health care workers? A Little Local Cheer tells the story of Raymond, who began to know his neighbours by the sound of their gratitude. Remarkably, this city block is still keeping the 7pm cheer going!

Joni Taylor is an educator/illustrator/writer whose work is mostly self-reflexive. She spends her time observing and thinking and creating stories about her observations in the form of graphic narratives. Her characters are mundane, average and typically overlooked – seeing the unseen. She holds a BFA and an MFA in which she theorizes about the strength of comics as a formidable means to disseminate a message beyond the gallery walls.

Joni will be reading at our free on-line event on October 15th at 7pm. Register HERE to join us!

Follow Joni on Instagram at @jonidraws

Book Pairing:

Three Stories of Anti-Asian Racism in BC 

By Janice Liu and project 1907

The alarming increase in anti-Asian racism during the pandemic prompted us to speak with project 1907. “To understand how Asian people are being treated today, we must first understand how they were treated throughout history.” 

Janice Liu is a children’s comic artist based in Burnaby, BC. Her Chinese-English bilingual graphic novel, Chicken Soup & Goji Berries 中药鸡汤 (published by Cloudscape Comics) was a 2020 Excellence in Graphic Literature Award finalist and Gene Day Award nominee. Janice specializes in creating digital illustrations inspired by Chinese ink and brush paintings. She is also the owner of the children’s art school, Young Artists’ Place.

Follow Janice on Instagram at @flutterdoodle

Book Pairing:

Grocer Grief

As told to Rachel Smith

During lock down, our grocery store workers still went to work. We spoke with a frontline worker who shared their experience and feelings about their work, and the public’s changing perception of their value as the pandemic progressed. 

Rachel Smith is a queer cartoonist living on unceded Tseycum & Pauquachin territory (aka North Saanich, BC). They like to create weird doodles, zines, and comics, and spend most of their time outside with their beloved dog Stella! They have published illustrations and comics in several anthologies, including Vagabond Comics, Kraken Komiks, Grow N’ Pains Zine, Swampcone Magazine, and Beside The Point Magazine. They are also the creator of the bio-comic SKULL, which chronicles their experiences with mental illness and the mundane. 

Follow Rachel on Instagram at @artbyrachels

Rachel will be reading at our free on-line event on October 15th at 7pm. Register HERE to join us!

Book Pairing:

Let’s Start from Here

By Jonathon Dalton and Elli Taylor

The Downtown Eastside was already dealing with the opioid and homelessness crises when the pandemic began. Elli Taylor, an activist and street outreach worker, shares their experience and hopes for their community.

Jonathon lives and works just outside Vancouver, Canada. He makes comics about strange, alien worlds and the ordinary people who live in them. Jonathon’s past works include the self-published graphic novels A Mad Tea-Party and the Xeric-winning Lords of Death and Life. He has also drawn short comics for various Cloudscape anthologies, for Leia Weathington’s The Legend of Bold Riley, and for the anthologies New World and Cautionary Fables and Fairy Tales: Asia Edition. He is currently working is working on a very long comic about space, most of which takes place on Earth.

Jonathon will be reading at our free on-line event on October 15th at 7pm. Register HERE to join us!

Book Pairing:

  • Tower 25 by PJ Patten
  • Welcome to Mina’s – A Diner themed Comic Anthology about Vancouver, featuring heart-warming stories of life, love, and food.

A Return to Play

By Oliver McTavish-Wisden and Lori Snyder

We spoke with Lori Snyder, a Métis herbalist and educator, who considered the quiet of the city brought on by the pandemic. She asks us, “Why do we work so much and play so little?”

Oliver Henry McTavish-Wisden is a New Westminster-based writer, artist and community arts programmer for the Vancouver Park Board. He really enjoys scuba diving and playing the Trumpet, but he’s kind of slow at drawing, so he finds himself collaborating well with others!

Oliver will be reading at our free on-line event on October 22nd at 7pm. Register HERE to join us!

Book Pairing:

With or Without Words

As told to Jeffrey Ellis and Scarlet Wings Kaili

With or Without Words looks at how we hide behind social niceties, even when we are hurting. This
comic shows us how to reach out to each other, to ask for what we need to break through feelings of
loneliness and isolation.

Since graduating from Emily Carr University of Art and Design in 2018, Scarlet Wings Kaili (SWKart) has
been working on a fantasy graphic novel series, Halfsoul, that talks about various mental illness and
recovery issues. She is dedicated to advocating for mental health wellness and reducing stigma and
plans to have more work in the future about this topic.  Her work has also appeared in a number of
anthologies including  Life Finds A Way, and Through the Labyrinths of the Mind.

Jeffrey Ellis is a fresh graduate of Capilano Universities IDEA program with Bachelor of Design In Visual
Communication program.  Currently seeking gainful employment in motion graphics and Illustrations.
Visual storytelling has been his passion since childhood. Through his involvement in the Cloudscape
Comics Society (a non-profit he founded) he’s had more than ten years of experience in project
management, print production, publishing, and administration. He has also managed the production of
more than ten different printed graphic novels many of which contain his own work. Including multiple
books of his own work, most notably “Teach English In Japan”, which is based on his experience teaching
English in Japan for three years.

Follow Jeff on Instagram at @jeff_ellis_art

Jeff will be reading at our free on-line event on October 22nd at 7pm. Register HERE to join us!

Book Pairing:

We Stand Alone

By Alina Pete and Kung Jaadee

Haida storyteller, Kung Jaadee, spoke of the isolation and distance from family and home that she felt during the pandemic. Her memory of singing to ease the sorrow of totem poles in a museum far from Haida Gwaii resonates in this comic. 

Alina Pete (the/them) is a Cree artist and writer from Little Pine First Nation in western Saskatchewan. They are best known for their Aurora award-winning webcomic, Weregeek (, but they also write short stories, poems and RPG supplements, and their work has been featured in several comic anthologies, including Moonshot Volumes 2 & 3.

Alina will be reading at our free on-line event on October 22nd at 7pm. Register HERE to join us!

Follow Alina on Instagram at @alinapete_art

Book Pairing:

Who made this?

Cloudscape Comics joined forces with the Heritage Vancouver Society to create this record of our lives and hopes during the last 18 months. To find out how this comics collection is considered heritage, visit Heritage Vancouver.

Heritage Vancouver is an independent, member-based registered charity dedicated to place, meaning and experience. They are committed to a holistic practice of heritage that captures the diverse relationships people have with nature, cultural practices, stories, memories, buildings, and ideas that give meanings to places.

The Cloudscape Comics Society is a graphic novel publisher centered in Metro Vancouver. Since our founding in 2007, Cloudscape has published over 25 graphic novels and anthologies. Cloudscape is also an artist collective, made up of over 100 members of the comics community within BC. As a registered non-profit organization, proceeds from the sales of Cloudscape books go towards providing developing artists with free drawing classes, studio space, a lending library, and a small printing center, as well as delivering public events, talks, demonstrations and even public art, and of course, publishing more books!