I was beyond stoked when I found out that our “fun bonus” feature for Cartozia Tales Issue 4 was going to be STICKER SHEETS. I go nuts for stickers — who doesn’t? So I spent all day Tuesday drawing this sheet of some of my favorite characters: a Philosopher Bird, a Mask Bear mask, Master Cyrus, Wick the Wind-up Man, Lila the Sprigster, a Tickle Crab, and Minnaig the Otter-girl, star of my most recent story for the series. They’re gonna be printed in little 5”x7” sheets and paired with a second batch of characters illustrated by my co-contributor Lupi McGinty.
I cannot wait to stick these all over everything I own.
Also: have a preview panel! This last weekend in Portland was all snow and chaos, so I took the opportunity to hunker down at home and churn out my story for Issue 4: The Rite Choice.
In honor of completing my story for Cartozia #3 last week, I decided to do a little warm-up sketch of my two protagonists on Sunday. Meet Grumley and Bumley, cantankerous fishermen at large.
I’ve also been trying to get back into the habit of doing warm-up sketches on a more regular basis, so here are some heads, hands, and hounds.
And then just a few assorted figures I’ve been noodling around with. You might recognize John Elliott (one of my favorite folk musicians at the moment) and Dan Weber (only one B, ignore that note), who played a great gig at Al’s Den a few months ago in Portland. There’s also a dress from the fantastic OMG That Dress tumblr. And me as a pretentious art critic, for reasons unknown.
Just finished a mad dash to finish line on my latest story for Cartozia Tales. Did I mention WE MET OUR KICKSTARTER GOAL? Holy cow, Internet. You really pulled through on that one and I’m so incredibly grateful. Thanks to all of you who helped spread the word and raise us over our massive goal. You’re all great.
Of course this means that I get to work on this series for an entire year! I can’t wait to see where it goes. Anyway, this is a small smattering of panels from Kevin’s Catch, which will appear in Cartozia #3. Want to be the first to get your hands on a copy? You can subscribe right now! Otherwise I’ll be posting a link when the issue goes live.
You’ve heard me shouting about it for months and end, and now the day is finally here! The Cartozia Kickstarter Campaign has launched with an incredible outpouring of support from fans all over the world. I’m so excited to share it with you.
In case you’ve missed it the last fifteen times I’ve gushed about Cartozia on the web, it’s an all-ages fantasy series set in a shared world and brought to life by a core team of eight indie cartoonists. With the guidance of our fearless editor Isaac Cates, we’ve published the first two issues on our own dime, and now we’re aiming to fund an entire year’s worth of 40-page issues. It’s an audacious campaign, but I have faith that we’re going to knock it out of the park.
From story to story and issue to issue, we swap characters and locations via a game of chance, building on one another’s ideas to create a dynamic narrative landscape. Two guest stars per issue help keep things fresh, and we’ve got some incredible names on the project (James Kochalka! Brittney Sabo! Evan Dahm! Eleanor Davis! Dylan Horrocks!).
I’m fairly certain this type of storytelling has never been done before on such a scale, and the results so far have been fantastic — immersive and playful for kids, engaging and complex for adults. We’re making Cartozia Tales because we think the world needs more comics that will attract young readers and let them celebrate adventure, curiosity, exploration, and fun, but we can’t make it happen without your help.
If you want to dive in and make this thing happen, here are some ideas to get you started:
I’ll be posting more news as I get it, but right now the biggest goal is setting this campaign off to a roaring start. I can’t wait to see where it goes. As an added incentive, here’s a full gallery of all the ridiculous dances I was giving away earlier this week to celebrate early subscribers to the series:
Joy of joys! My copies of Cartozia #1 arrived over the weekend and HOLY COW they are bee-yoo-tiful. Isaac did a stellar job with the print quality and paper stock, and the stories all look gorgeous. I just can’t stop touching them.
We’ll be running a Kickstarter for the full year’s worth of issues later this month, but I encourage all of you to order or subscribe NOW, as the price will go up to account for Kickstarter fees and other sundry costs. The more subscribers we get now, the lower our target goal will be and the higher our chances of succeeding. Plus, this is a beautiful and innovative comic, and I’m excited to get it into as many hands as possible.
If you’re allergic to ordering things on the Internet, I’ll also have these first issues for sale in person at Rose City Comic Con next month. No excuses!
These are some fancy postcards that will come bundled with the second issue of Cartozia Tales. They’ll be fully sendable, so you can either cut ‘em out or mail ‘em to friends. The paper will be nice and sturdy, and the figures each have outfits that you can color and cut out yourself from the centerfold of the second issue. If you don’t want to cut up your precious comic, we’ll even offer PDFs of the outfits so you can make as many as you like!
Sarah Becan created Reshii (who’s one of the characters I’ll be working with in Issue 2), and Jen Vaughn is responsible for Sylvia.
In the meantime, as I mentioned yesterday, Issue 1 is available for pre-order at a dollar off the regular price until it starts shipping on August 1st!
Issue 1 of Cartozia Tales went off to the printer’s yesterday and should start shipping on August 1st. Can you believe this incredible cover by Leah Palmer Preiss? Such beautiful work.
The issue will contain 44 sturdy pages of adventurous comics, interactive features, and other surprises. We’ve had a great time putting together this first issue, and #2 is already coming together nicely.
You can pre-order a copy for yourself or a voracious young comic reader in your life here or get a subscription to the whole series here. Issue 1 is also discounted until the comic comes in from the printers, so you get can your copy for a dollar off the cover price if you order now!
Hey Gang! Sorry things have been a bit quiet over here. I’m currently deep in a Three-Project Wormhole thanks to some foolish treble-booking on my part, but NEVER FEAR. I am kicking ass and taking names in my usual style.
The good news is this means lots of new stuff for you to look at in the coming weeks. Read on for the whole rundown.
First up, I’ll have another story done for Cartozia by the end of the month. Tom Motley designed the awesome promo postcard pictured above, and you can even read a couple stories from the first issue of the series on the Cartozia site! The more I work on this project the more excited I become. It’s wonderful to be collaborating with so many enthusiastic creators. I also get to incorporate some super cool characters and environments into this next tale. Should be a grand old time.
Second, I’ve been collaborating once more with the great Shannon Campbell (the writer behind Navy Ink) on a submission for Rock Ink Roll — a totally rad music/comics anthology involving some of my favorite people: fellow boat-lover Kevin Cannon, fellow Lady Cartoonist Brittney Sabo, and fellow Cartozian Lupi McGinty. Shannon busted out a story in no time flat, with a pitch so delightful I couldn’t wait to get started. I think this one’s going to be a lot of fun.
Finally, I’m illustrating a secret project that I can’t say much about. It should be finished by September, at which point I’ll be able to share more information, but in the meantime this elusive coon in the only hint I can give.
That’s all from me for now! Back to the drawing board.
As if there weren’t enough stuff already going on this week, the official announcement for Cartozia Tales has just gone live! Seven core cartoonists (and several special guests) have been hard at work creating the world you see here over the past few months, and soon we’ll be releasing the first issue of our brand-new, all-ages fantasy series set therein.
The stories are divided up into map quadrants and shared randomly among contributors, so each issue will pair artists with new environments and characters. I’m very excited to be working alongside creators like Dylan Horrocks, Jen Vaughn, Isaac Cates, Sarah Becan and many others. My story for issue one should be finished before the week is out — here are some preliminary sketches:
I’ll share more sneak previews as and when I can. In the meantime, consider signing up as a regular subscriber to receive the first ten issues and help guarantee the continuation of the project.