I'm a UK-based comic artist and writer. This is my corner of the web and you are very welcome. Please take a look around, pull up a beanbag, have a cuppa ^_^
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Thursday
Aug232007

Update on me ^_^

Sorry for my quietness recently. Man, it's been a crazy month! Workshopping all over the place has taken its toll, and that's not taking into account the work I had to do in the few moments at home! Buuuut, it's drawing to a close for a bit I hope. Friday morning I head off to Ireland to attend Tomo-dachi con, and after that I think I have a full week at home! The luxury! 0_o In amongst all of the crazyness there has been some very good news as well. As always I'm waiting on certain parties to announce first; until then I have to appear as a jobless bum ^_~ But I am working - honest! haha.
Sunday
Aug122007

Upcoming workshops

Sonia and I have a busy, busy week ahead, and may well see some of you on our travels. Here's my workshop plan for the week: Mon, Tue & Wed - Walsall We'll be travelling between various venues, doing three workshops a day in Walsall. Hope we're not too exhausted! Thursday - Wokingham (Info from Wokingham council's site:) Illustrators Sonia Leong and Emma Vieceli will be coming along to run two sessions on drawing manga characters and comic strips. Teens will contribute to a manga wall. Age group 11+ Times: 2.30pm-4pm Contact: Wokingham Library Venue: Denmark Street 0118 9781368 www.wokingham.gov.uk/libraries Prices: Free Friday - Bexleyheath A workshop at Bexley library. We've been there before and loved it; so very much looking forward to returning. ^_^
Tuesday
Aug072007

Dragon Heir #6 is done!!

I promised myself I wouldn't let my sweatdrop stuff stop once I went freelance, and I haven't been too good at keeping that promise so far! But now, DH#6 is finally done!! I'm very excited and can't wait to get it printed!! ^_^
Thursday
Aug022007

Comic Bits Online interview ^_^

Click here for the interview What a nice surprise to have this pointed out to me today. I'm going to have a read myself and hope that I didn't say anything too idiotic! ^_~
Thursday
Jul262007

A message to all you Valentines High Schoolers ^_^

What a lovely bunch you are! I had a wonderful day with you guys, and seeing how enthused you all were for manga by the end really made me happy! Thank you so much for inviting me into your school and for being such a fab audience. Best of luck to all of you in your manga drawing hobbies - who knows, maybe I'll see you again sometime? ^_~ EDIT > What an amazing response -thanks guys ^_^ Hey, if anyone has any photos of the day, please do mail them along! I know Priya was taking some. Ems^_^
Thursday
Jul192007

New images added

Some new images added to both the professional and personal galleries. ^_^ In other news, I'm getting psyched up for JapanEXLondon and, amazingly, am drawing some of Dragon Heir #6! No, really! fairyclean Bill + Ted's adventure Baby Rasta
Tuesday
Jul102007

Back from Japan

What a fantastic time we had in Japan! Just incredible on so many levels. ^_^ For those not in the know, Sonia Leong, Emma Hayley and myself just returned from a trip to Japan where we were invited to speak about the Manga Shakespeare series. None of us could have predicted the response we would receive over there. Coming from a country where, though we do see more and more support these days, every manga styled artist will at some point have to face the 'but you're not Japanese' argument, the attitude in the home of the industry was refreshing to say the least! In Japan, Sonia and I were treated as any other manga artist - our work was seen as manga. The question of our nationality was never raised. When Emma Hayley mentioned in talks events such as the 'what is manga' discussion in London, she was always greeted with amused smiles as if to say 'why spend so long debating it?'. We couldn't help but agree. Perhaps, here in the west, far too much time is spent analysing the ins and outs of this marvellous industry when we should simply be enjoying it. Who cares what nationality an artist is? If the Japanese have no qualms with the British making manga, then why should anyone else? racial debate aside, I'll move back to the tour. ^_~ We moved from Tokyo, to Kyoto, to Nagoya and back to Tokyo; and everywhere we went we were treated to visual and literal feasts. Our first talk was in the Kyoto museum of manga; the largest of its kind. Sonia and I were delighted yet petrified to be asked to provide images for the museum's archives. We were the first western artists to do so it seems. Interestingly, the museum sported amongst its wonders an entire section devoted to Western comics (yes, they count!) so I got to see the likes of Gibbons' Watchmen and Gaiman's Sandman translated into Japanese. It also had a small but growing section of manga in English. Global manga enthusiasts will be interested to know that Queenie-chan's 'the Dreaming' was the only OEL title on the shelf - though of course Hamlet and Romeo + Juliet are now keeping it company. We'll be helping the curators to grow this section I'm sure. ^_^ Our talk was well met, which was a relief as amongst the audience was one of Japan's most respected manga critics! Next up talk-wise was the Sugiyami Jogakuen University in Nagoya where we entertained an audience of over 100 female students. Again, the response was amazing! The girls were all so enthusiastic and it was a pleasure speaking with some of them afterwards. Sonia's cultural references in Romeo + Juliet especially went down well here... and my sketching of a Hamlet catboy was enough to set a couple of fangirls shrieking. ^_^ Our hosts were also very enthusiastic; with topics of conversation ranging from their love of Bryan May to wanting to marry me off to their son! Our last speaking engagement was back in Tokyo at a symposium about Shakespeare's manga adventures. Along with Emma, Sonia and myself were three Japanese guest speakers: Yukari Fujimoto, Fusami Ogi and Yamada san. Each of these remarkable women are specialists in the field of shoujo manga and we were honoured enough to be able to not only watch their presentations, but to then go to lunch with them after the talks. It was fascinating! We got to share some cultural quirks (the terms, Emo, Bishie and even Narutard have now found their way into Japan..haha) and discuss the world of shoujo manga and its origins. In between these talks were interviews, chats and meals galore. A few of note being: a visit to the home of Wacom, an interview with the Japanese newspaper Nikkei and a chat with PEN magazine. There were times when our feet barely touched the ground. It wasn't all work of course. In between, we managed to visit Gion and catch sight of a geisha or two, wizz round a Tokugawa museum and naturally do a little spending. ^_~ So now, here I sit, back home. Miles away in body and spirit from the world I was in just a couple of days ago. The sheer enthusiasm and buzz that we felt in Japan will linger with me for a long time I think. What happened last week was a turning point in the history of manga and of Shakespearean studies. As one of our guides said 'we are making history'. I can't say just how proud and honoured I felt that Sonia and myself were able to represent global manga in the original home of the industry. If the signs are anything to go by, the bridge that we have built will stand for a long time to come! You'll find a couple of photos added to the Events and photos page.
Thursday
Jun282007

New image in personal gallery

The lovely Jamie McKelvie will shortly be releasing issue one of his awesome comic goodness, Suburban Glamour. If the 6 page preview on his site is anything to go by, it's going to be fantastic! Yours truly was lucky enough to be asked to supply a pinup for the issue and I happily obliged. Check the image out and don't forget to buy the comic! ^__^Astrid - Suburban Glamour