Eisner-award winning Simpsons artists and Cloudscape contributors Ian Boothby and Nina Matsumoto recently published Sparks! from Scholastic, a young readers graphic novel about August and Charlie, two cats who meet as fellow prisoners in a secret animal testing laboratory and then build a mechanical dog suit to perform acts of heroism. Sparks has gotten a lot of attention from numerous reviewers, and the magazine Quill & Quire described it as “the kind of story that, despite its zaniness and hilariously overstuffed plot, makes you genuinely care about the complicated friendship at its core…. Boothby keeps a lot of narrative plates spinning without breaking a single one. Matsumoto’s bright, dynamic, and cartoonish illustrations, though vaguely reminiscent of a certain show about a dysfunctional Springfield family, are a perfect fit with the text.”
If you are a fan of role-playing games or great monster art, then you should know that Faerie Fire has started its kickstarter. This is a Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition supplement masterminded by prominent Cloudscape contributor Shannon Campbell that explores the bizarre world of the fairies with numerous new monsters and magical items. Faerie Fire is inspired by the neon noir aesthetic of the late 80s, with a touch of Trapper Keeper, and a spot of 90s Lisa Frank thrown in for good measure. With magic reminiscent of neon lights and holograms, and a fey court full of glamour, the fairy wilds are filled with creatures dazzling and deadly in equal measure.
Faerie Fire features numerous artists who also have contributed to Cloudscape books, including Renee Nault, Nina Matsumoto, Sfe Monster, and Alina Pete. Part artbook, part bestiary, Faerie Fire is guaranteed to be a stunning addition to your bookshelf. To order it and various other great perks, go to the Faerie Fire Kickstarter page.
The participating artists & writers for Bones of the Coast, our up-coming horror anthology, have been working hard to make their stories as frightening as possible, so it’s time to give them a little recognition. The anthology will include the talents of:
- Kelly Aarons
- Shannon Campbell
- Chloe Chan
- Anastasiya Chernaya
- Jonathon Dalton
- Michael Elliott
- Jeff Ellis
- Kevin Forbes
- Mindy Fraser
- KC Green
- Britt c. h.
- Abby Hontiveros
- Abby Howard
- Lindsay Ishihiro
- Kathleen Jacques
- Sean Karemaker
- Emily Lampson
- Christian Lett
- Reetta Linjama
- Sam Logan
- Nina Matsumoto
- Angela Melick
- Sfé Monster
- Cameron Morris
- Renee Nault
- Emily Partridge
- Alina Pete
- Yuriy Plisenko
- Jess Pollard
- Simon Roy
- Kris Sayer
- Aliena Shoemaker
- Kris Straub
- Bevan Thomas
- Adam Tuck
- Jeri Weaver
- Pam Wishbow
We’re incredibly excited to see these stories develop – we hope you are, too!
The first batch of “Comics in Transit” comics will be removed on October 5, so you only have one more week to spot them! Here’s where they all are:
- Powell 20m W/O Main NS – Phillip Barrett
- Cambie 31m s/o W. 43rd WS – Steve Rolston
- Commercial 20m N/O E. 6th ES – Steve Rolston
- Fraser 20m N/O E. 28th ES – Sam Logan
- E. Hastings 43m E/O Windermere SS – Jonathon Dalton
- Kingsway 20m W/O Rupert NS – Johnnie Christmas
- Nanaimo 27m S/O William WS – Jonathon Dalton
- W. 10th 29m W/O Tolmie – Jason Turner
- W. 41st 11m W/O Dunbar SS – Nina Matsumoto
- E. 49th 31m E/O Killarney SS – Sean Karemaker
After they come down, a new batch of comics will replace them, so keep your eyes peeled!
Cloudscape’s “Comics in Transit” keeps on rolling! Comics have been popping-up in bus shelters all over Metro Vancouver, one-page stories created by such prominent local creators as Nina Matsumoto, Johnnie Christmas, Steve Rolston, and many more. We’ve been getting a lot of attention, including more buzz in the Georgia Straight and an extensive article in UBC’s student magazine, the Ubyssey. In the Ubyssey article, Cloudscape president Oliver McTavish-Wisden talks about what inspired him to create “Comics in Transit”:
“What I wanted to do is — because so many of the artists I work with are from different parts of the world but have decided to call B.C. home — I challenged them…. I said to write a story about a city that you like or have had some experience with…. Hopefully when people read these at the bus stops they’ll maybe learn a little something from their neighbours, where they’re from… and maybe start to know about who they’re waiting for the bus with…. I was just looking and thinking of ways I could get comic panels or comic pages out of the book format…. I’m always thinking of ways to sort of shake up how people see comics and where they see them.”
Read the rest of the article at “Comics in Transit showing commuters where their neighbours are from.”
Cloudscape president Oliver McTavish-Wisden recently wrote an article showcasing comics in BC that was featured on the BC Tourism website:
“Most visitors to BC come for the gorgeous natural scenery, renowned dining scene and local culture. But in addition to these iconic BC attractions, there are plenty of opportunities for those seeking a more niche experience. For example, BC is becoming increasingly know for a growing community of cartoonists making a name for themselves locally and beyond. If you’re a comic buff, or a creator yourself, BC has a lot to offer in terms of sights, stories and activities. Read on to gain a bit of a head start in exploring BC’s rich comic scene.
A number of artists and writers call BC home. Nina Matsumoto, Ian Boothby and James Lloyd all work for Bongo Comics, Vancouverite Sam Logan writes and draws the highly popular Sam and Fuzzy webcomic, and Johnnie Christmas and Ed Brisson authored Sheltered (possibly the greatest pre-apocalyptic story), published through Image Comics. Colin Upton, a fixture in the alternative arts scene since the 1980s, can often be seen walking around Vancouver and leaving behind mini-comics and ink stains in the various cafés he frequents. Also notable are Brandon Graham and Simon Roy, BC artists who’ve worked on the ground-breaking Prophet series, a comic that is proving to be critical in reviving the sci-fi genre on a large scale. And that isn’t even the tip of the iceberg: hundreds of talented indie comic artists spin their stories on our shores.”
For more, read “BC’s Comic Scene: Vancouver and Beyond.”
Iron Circus is currently in the middle of the Kickstarter for its latest comics anthology: New World — a 360-page black-and-white collection of fantasy and sci-fi comics about culture clash, what happens when civilizations meet. This anthology features stories by a wide variety of cartoonists, including prominent Cloudscape members Jonathon Dalton and Nina Matsumoto! To learn more about this intriguing anthology, visit the New World Kickstarter page.
May 24-25 is the Vancouver Comic Arts Festival at the Roundhouse (181 Roundhouse Mews). It’s BC’s largest indie comics convention and a great opportunity to meet numerous local indie comics creators, including Simon Roy, Nina Matsumoto, Brandon Graham, Steve Rolston, Lucy Bellwood, and Ed Brisson. Cloudscape will be there with plenty of books and many of our members will be running events. The whole event is free to attend so stop by!
It’s that time of year again! True to tradition, we at Cloudscape Comics are releasing our annual comics anthology; this year, we are proud to present Waterlogged – Tales from the Seventh Sea. Prepare yourself for a gorgeous hardcover tome printed in blue & black and featuring over 30 different artists from British Columbia!
Our fundraiser has begun! To pre-purchase the book and avail yourself of numerous other Cloudscape loot, take a gander at our indiegogo campaign (now with real video!). Also, stay tuned to our facebook and tumblr pages for artist spotlights and previews!
Waterlogged is overflowing with all sorts of nautical goodness: explorers, kraken, pirates, mermaids, naval officers, ghosts, and more can all be found between the pages. Living as we do on North America’s rainy northwest coast, the sea is always on our artists’ minds. Each story is a creator’s unique response to our great blue neighbour.
Filled with beautiful seafaring tales, the collection boasts works from such fantastic artists as Sam Logan (Sam & Fuzzy), Angela Melick (Wasted Talent), Nina Matsumoto (Yokaiden, Simpsons, Futurama), Colin Upton (Postmodern Mini-Comics), Gabriel Frizzera, Lucy Bellwood (Baggywrinkles), Jonathon Dalton (A Mad Tea-Party), Laura Bifano, Jeff Ellis (Teach English in Japan) and many others.
Thank you for your continued support and interest in local indie comics!