Based in Philadelphia, the all-female Dirty Diamonds comics collective has spent the last few years putting out a series of anthologies filled with real-life, autobiographical stories centered around a single theme each time. Past anthologies have been on the topics "alcohol" or "jobs", for example, with open submission calls sent out for female writers/artists to submit their pitches.
It's been a tremendous success so far, to the extent that editors Claire Folkman and Kelly Phillips are this year bringing out anthology number six for Dirty Diamonds. Six! This time the theme is "Beauty", and the pair have now come to Kickstarter to fund the print run. To find out more --- and to share a look at some of the comics that will be featured --- ComicsAlliance spoke to Kelly and Claire about the project.
A familiar fixture at conventions, writer John Lees' The Standard has been in-publication since 2011. The story of a retired superhero forced to put back on his cape to investigate the apparent murder of his former sidekick, the six-issue series was picked up by ComixTribe and published across 2013-14. Joined by artist Jonathan Rector and a creative team of Will Robson, Mike Gagnon, Kel Nuttall, and Steven Forbes, the series was highly acclaimed across the UK, and earned Lees the Best Writer Award at the Scottish Independent Comic Awards.
This year the team has come to Kickstarter to fund a collected hardcover edition of the complete series. Featuring over 200 pages of story, back material, and many other surprises, the collection has already been funded and is headed into stretch goal territory. Following on from that success, ComicsAlliance spoke to Lees about the long journey that led him here.
Here's one for fans of The X-Files. Running on Kickstarter right now, Cash and Carrie follows the junior high school adventures of Dallas Cash and Inez Carrie, two budding investigators who find themselves pulled into a fiendish fiasco with a hint of the supernatural. Somebody has taken their school's mascot, a goat, and they race off (on their vespas, awesomely) to go get it back.
Created by Shawn Pryor, who recently served as President of Action Lab Comics, the book is written by Giulie Speziani and pencilled by Penny Candy, and the whole team were determined to create an all-ages series with real diversity. The term sometimes becomes a meaningless catch-all, but, here's a book that takes the concept seriously and gives it some depth. Inez and Dallas are bright and fun characters to hang out with, as are the creative team. ComicsAlliance spoke to all three about their project.
With Kickstarter's rise has come a rise in new projects featuring superheroes who sit outside the dynamics you'll find on the Diamond Catalog. Writers and artists have been able to find audiences for superheroes who represent a wider group of readers, and whose experiences mirror those of the new wave of creatives who have come to comics over the last few years.
Gamer Girl & Vixen is a great example of just such a comic, starring a pair of caped villainesses (of sorts) who fall in love with each another, and spur each other on to be better, and to be themselves. The creation of Kristi McDowell and Sean Ian Mills, the comic is illustrated by Gemma Moody, and lettered by Taylor Esposito, and is now seeking funding on Kickstarter for print editions of the first two issues.
We spoke to Kristi and Sean about how the series came about, and why they decided to bring it to Kickstarter.
Last week, ComicsAlliance showed you an exclusive preview of Gene Ha's graphic novel Mae, which he's currently running a Kickstarter for. The project is funded twice over with three weeks left in its campaign, but Ha still has more stretch goals and incentives planned. We've spoken with him about genesis of the project, his careful planning for the Kickstarter, what it's like taking on new roles as a creator, and why he thinks broadening comics' readership is important.
Cartoonist Kel McDonald, who we’ve interviewed in the past about her work in webcomics and her early adoption of Kickstarter to fund print comics, just launched a new Kickstarter campaign for her comic The Better to Find You With. This project is unique in that McDonald is funding a print edition for a comic that will later be released as a webcomic, but for around a year, it will be print-only.
Well-known comics artist Gene Ha is currently running a Kickstarter for his original graphic novel, Mae, about two sisters who end up on an unexpected adventure. According to Ha, it's a comic made for a broad audience from young adults on up. The project is already completed, and is just waiting for funding to be printed and shipped. That means we can show you an exclusive preview of Mae while you still have time to back the project!
Designer Jason Thompson is currently running a Kickstarter for his tabletop game Mangaka: The Fast & Furious Game of Drawing Comics, where players draw a comic through the course of the game. It's a fascinating idea that combines two interests that often overlap; comics and tabletop gaming. The description makes it seem like the game moves at a breakneck pace, and is more about creative storytelling based on the cards you pull than on displaying impressive art skills, which means I might actually be able to play.
The comics anthology, having struggled to make a lasting impact in mainstream American comics publishing, has found a home online. Kickstarter has proved to be the place to go if you want to see a collection of familiar and new artists telling stories together, and this month saw a mighty new anthology take to the platform. The Broken Frontier Anthology, edited by Frederick Hautain, is a collection of creator-owned tales presented by Broken Frontier, a website that specializes in creator-owned comics.
Writer/artist Jamal Igle has had a busy few years in comics. Fresh off an exclusive at DC Comics where he became known as probably the defining Supergirl artist, he's joined Action Lab Comics, become a lecturer on comics issues, and --- oh yes --- created Molly Danger. The first volume of his series proved a knockout success on Kickstarter when it launched, raising over $50,000 from fans and acclaim from readers.
This year Igle is returning to Kickstarter for Book Two of the series, which is currently proposed to run for four volumes --- and things are really starting to get interesting for the young superhero. She's gained new allies, new enemies, and a whole load of new complications in her life. We spoke to Igle about his hero, and his plans for book two of the series.
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