A 270-page thumbnail draft of my new all-ages book was completed today. About three months’ work versus two years spent on the thumbnails for HABIBI. For the new project, I scored a new $50 drafting table so that the vintage table HABIBI was drawn on can have company. That’s cartoonist buddy Farel Dalrymple in the photo joining me for a day of drawing.
Also noteworthy is that HABIBI has been honored with two Eisner award nominations! The award’s namesake is the late, great Will Eisner. Check here for the full list of categories and nominees.
This week, I’ll be at Calvin College in my home-state of Michigan for the Festival of Faith & Writing. This includes an exhibition of original art open to the public on Friday, April 20th at 6:30pm. The show runs for a week after; M-T 9am-5pm, W-F 9am-9pm, Sat 10am-4pm.
Continuing on the themes of last week’s post, you’ll find a link to my acceptance essay for the PNBA award which explains the Hokusai
wave graphic. Here’s a shot of the award, and the man who presented it — noteworthy fantasy author & gentleman Terry Brooks.
On a Valentine’s note, OPRAH named BLANKETS one of the greatest love stories of all time. (?!?) (Bless her soul!)
And Aussie buddie Pat Grant released a new book named BLUE that I’m quite fond of.
Also, overlooked in that last post was a recap of London and Angoulême tour. London, as you know, is a charming city full
of deliciously polite folks. As for Angoulême, Drawn & Quarterly and Sarah Glidden do a great job of summarizing the festival.
Here’s myself with two of my favorite French cartoonists – Dupuy & Berberian!
Home safe & sound, and desperate to take a break from travel for a while. My new babies are being neglected!
Next weekend is an easy jaunt to the Cannon Beach Book Company on the Oregon coast to give a talk and accept the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association award. Saturday, February 11th, 2pm — actually held at the library across the street from the store. I chose the location, because CBBC is an impressive book shop that’s a comfort to peruse on a rainy day at the coast, but also because Cannon Beach is a spiritual sanctuary where I’ve been nourished by the ocean in the company of friends, sea lions, probably some sharks, and occasionally sun. This painting by my dear buddy Dan Attoe perfectly captures the magic of our cozy surf cove.
Here’s another glimpse of that beach from the earliest days of this blog, five years ago. Still a good mantra: “Goonies never say die.”
The adventure continues. Next week, I’ll finally make it to the UK – at least London – for some HABIBI events.
Friday the 20th of January, 6pm at FORBIDDEN PLANET • Saturday the 21st, 5pm at GOSH
Monday the 23rd, 7pm at the St. Albans Conference Centre – a COMICA event • Tuesday the 24th, 6pm at MEGA CITY COMICS.
An explanation of these images : There’s many overt references to classic paintings planted in HABIBI – here’s one of my favorites,
echoing The Poor Fisherman (1881) by Puvis de Chavannes. The half-swaddled infant in the background reminds me of Viktor Pokov’s
1969 painting July, previously cataloged in my list of rip-offs and inspirations.
My first time to Europe was in 1995 for a two week community college scholarship. Note the effects of sixteen years of aging –
– vital brain matter still sprinkles out of my head. (Stravinsky Fountain – Pompidou)
Just got home from HABIBI Eurotour yesterday. Thanks to all of you for your patience with the blog neglect. And tremendous thanks to my
EU readers that made it to the events. Frankfurt – Paris – Turin – Lucca – (rental car drive from Pisa to Brussels) – Brussels – Ghent – Leuven – Antwerp – Amsterdam. Too many places to sum up, though speaking at il Circolo dei Lettori in Turin was a great honor — a glorious space, joined on stage by Randa Ghazy, the author of DREAMING OF PALESTINE and translator of Italian HABIBI.
Met many amazing folks along the way, including my oft-acknowledged inspiration Edmond Baudoin.
Here we are drawing each others portraits the day before he traveled to Rio de Janeiro for a comics show.
HABIBI travel continues next week, but this time on home turf – the state where I was raised and its neighbor.
Wednesday, November 16th — 2pm at MIAD and 7pm at Boswell Books in Milwaukee, WISCONSIN!
Then on to Chicago, Illinois — Quimby’s on Thursday, November 17th (7pm) — and The Book Cellar on Friday, November 18th (7pm).
PS to Michaela who asked about my “educational background”. I attended UWMC community college part time for a year and a half, and MIAD for a half year. Then dropped out and worked as a bagel maker, telemarketer, laser light show animator, newspaper ad stylist, ad agency graphic designer, grocery packer, house painter, warehouse box-packing grunt, and graphic designer at Dark Horse Comics.
My apologies, Blog Friends, for neglecting DOOT DOOT GARDEN while on euro tour
– especially to my French Fans who are curious about events in Paris.
In fact, there’s no dedicacés scheduled in Paris where I’ve spent the past week. This came as a surprise to me, too,
but the reason is the Casterman edition of HABIBI is being released more than a month later than expected.
It debuts in stores on mecredi, 26 octobre, the day I leave Paris for Turin, Italy.
My time instead has been filled up with plenty of media interiviews – PLENTY –
so at least you may hear about the book on TV, radio, web, or print.
The good news is I’ll be back in France for Angoulême (janvier 2012) and will probably visit Paris and other French cities at that time.
ALSO NOTE: London and UK appearances will precede Angoulême in earlier January. More soon! xo
HABIBI book tour is a sandwich. One bread slice (or one month) is American (two days Canada) and the other slice is European. In between was a thin slab of Portland time, flavored with coffee and rainwater; the tastiest part being the HABIBI-inspired art show hosted by Floating World. Pictured here: Carson Ellis, whose new book WILDWOOD with hubby Colin Meloy is a MUST-HAVE — and Theo Ellsworth, who worked alongside me in the studio, drawing his book CAPACITY, occasionally indulging in afternoon cognacs while inking.
Not pictured: Mike Allred, Farel Darlrymple, Lark Pien, Aaron Renier, Jen Wang. My cartoonist friends are the best in the world. These scans don’t do the pieces justice. If you live in Portland, check out the actual work at FLOATING WORLD. For everyone else, the show has motivated me to put together some sort of special book so that these beautiful tributes can be adequately shared. My continual thanks to you readers for making it to the events and being so kind. Euro tour begins TOMORROW.
Dear Readers, thank you for your patience with these rare posts. Tour is still chugging along, though I’m touching down
in my home Pacific NW a few days before heading off to Europe. Here’s some quick updates:
1) My tour overlapped a few times with Anders Nilsen and Adrian Tomine both on the road promoting new books
(Big Questions / Optic Nerve #12 – both amazing). Here we are at a Brooklyn Book Festival panel.
2) In Minneapolis, I lost my favorite jacket with my passport zipped inside. This led to some frantic days in San Francisco scrambling to get an expedited replacement. Photos via Jason in Chinatown! My event at Lee’s Comics in Mountain View had to be canceled, but was revisited at the Alternative Press Expo. 2) My 36th birthday happened in Boston hosted by the Harvard Book Store. Everyone sang HAPPY BIRTHDAY to me on stage at the Brattle Theater, and gifted me a cake, three cupcakes, and a bottle of bubbly (balloons not pictured). The most special cupcake was regifted to my generous media escort Lynn.
Endless thanks to all of you who’ve been supporting the book and/or making it to my HABIBI appearances. Great people, great energy. I’ve wanted to update the blog more often while touring, but discovered it’s difficult to squeeze in a moment. Hard to imagine I drew CARNET DE VOYAGE during similar circumstances. Thankfully, my hand is surviving this trip much better.
I’ve little documentation of my own of the various events, so feel free to courier some doot doot’s way. In the meantime, here’s a random selection. 1) Tattoos of my art at Midtown Comics in NYC: 2) Rare books room at the STRAND.
Dear Blog-friends. TODAY is the official release of HABIBI. For those of you in NYC, I’ll be signing at Midtown Comics’ DOWNTOWN location
(64 Fulton Street) at noon – and then at the STRAND (828 Broadway) at 7PM. But HABIBI will be on shelves in book stores
and comics shops across the nation (and in UK, France, Germany, Netherlands, Italy, and Spain).
My apologies for the lag in updating you. I got nasty sick the week before departing for book tour and then got caught up in the whirlwind. Officially departed on September 9 — and once you’ve read the book, you’ll recognize the numeric significance of those nines. Participated in a pre-release fundraiser for the CBLDF at the Small Press Expo in Bethesda, Maryland — then recovered at a friend’s farm in rural New York state, before speaking at the Center for Cartoon Studies in Vermont — then continuing on to NYC. Word bookstore in Greenpoint hosted an amazing and intimate event moderated by Sarah Glidden. And then I appeared at the Brooklyn Book Festival. Tomorrow is my 36th birthday (more NINES!) and I’ll be signing at the Harvard Book Store in Boston. Then Toronto, Montreal, Iowa City, Minneapolis, Portland, SF, Seattle, more Portland, and Europe. Hope to meet some of you along the way! x0