2013 Rainbow Project Nominations

All the nominations are in for the 2013 Rainbow Book List! Each year the Rainbow Books project of the American Library Association selects a list of top-notch books for young people (0-18 years) that contain honest depictions of LGBTQ people and themes. For a complete list of AADL’s holdings, click here. These are a few of my favorites so far.

Batwoman, Volume 1: Hydrology – Kate Kane tracks down a spectral child abductor. Little does she know, she is being tracked herself, by a government agent intent on unmasking Batwoman.

The Song of Achilles – Patroclus falls in love with his friend Achilles and follows him to war. Madeline Miller explores the relationships between several key players of Homer’s Iliad.

Tell The Wolves I’m Home – June’s uncle Finn is her best friend, but he is cruelly taken from her by AIDS. Carol Rifka Brunt deftly examines the simmering tensions and deep love present in any family, especially one dealing with tragedy.

DramaRaina Telgemeier’s graphic novel follows the hijinks of Callie and the theater department as they muddle through puberty, love, and line memorization.

The Rainbow Book List will be finalized in January, so stay tuned to see which books make the cut!

Hilda and the Midnight Giant

I'm steadily working my way through Publishers Weekly 2012 Best Books in Children's Fiction, and I was recently smitten with Luke Pearson's gorgeous and enchanting graphic novel, Hilda and the Midnight Giant.

Hilda and her mother are nestled happily in their mountainside home when they are besieged by tiny, invisible elves who demand they move their house. After befriending one of the elves (and signing a stack of paperwork), Hilda is granted the ability to see the elves, and she works her way up the chain of bureaucracy to find a diplomatic solution. On her travels to the elven prime minister and king, she meets an ancient, mysterious giant who unlocks secrets about the mountain she calls home.

Fans of Jeff Smith's Bone series, Miyazaki's work, and the Adventures of Polo series by Regis Faller will enjoy Hilda's spunkiness as well as Pearson's art.

Comic Artists Forum with Michelangelo Cicerone

Sunday, November 4 | 1:00-3:00 PM | Downtown Library | 4th Floor Meeting Room

Join "Ozone Jones" creator Michelangelo Cicerone, learn more about comic jams and then, take part in a comic jam!

Michelangelo will point out analogies to jazz/music, the difference between jams and collaborations, and will also demonstrate some techniques involved in participating and continuing jams. Comic jams are a great tool for honing both illustration and storytelling skills, while also offering an opportunity for the artist to interact with other artists without the more formal aspects of collaboration!

Join the Forum to get fresh ideas for your next comics or graphic novel creation. Drawing are provided, so drop in to draw, learn, and network with other cartoonists.

Two Generals

Back in July I met Scott Chantler at the Kids Read Comics convention at AADL and purchased his graphic novel, Two Generals. Shortly afterwards I was able to sit down and crack open the book. Wow, what a compelling story. The graphic novel follows Scott’s grandfather, Law Chantler, and his best friend Jack during their World War II experience in the Canadian Highland Light Infantry. I was drawn in by the way Chantler meticulously portrayed the part these two everyday heroes played in the pivotal Allied invasion of Normandy in June 1944.

After being drawn in by the opening pages that depict the aftermath of a horrific battle you’ll be swept back in time to see how these two soldiers found their way into the army. And, like me you’ll want to find out what happened to them and what was the outcome of the battle.

It is a great historical graphic novel, with an interesting story and fantastic art work that I think all readers will enjoy.

Comic Artists Forum with Tony Cliff

Sunday, October 7 | 1:00-3:00 PM | Downtown Library | 4th Floor Meeting Room

Hey cartoonists! Want to make your action scenes jump off the page? Eisner-nominated cartoonist Tony Cliff, creator of Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant (a series of online adventure comics set during the early 19th century) will demonstrate via Skype how to select just the right moment to create the illusion of action, drama, and dynamism. Learn how to draw stunning action shots that will leave your readers breathless!

Join the Forum to get fresh ideas for your next comics or graphic novel creation. Drawing supplies will be provided, so drop in to draw, learn, and network with other cartoonists.

September 22 - Drawing Lab: Sketching the Human Head

Saturday, September 22 | 1:00-4:00 PM | Downtown Library - Multipurpose Room | Gr. 6-Adult

Instructor Patricia Candor of the College for Creative Studies has developed a new way to look at drawing the human head that can be as simple or as complex as the artist chooses.

She will demonstrate and explain her method using an action line system, and then you can try your hand at sketching the human head. Here's your chance to grow artistically, whether you're an amateur or a professional artist!

La Perdida

La Perdida (2006) has waited patiently to be picked up and read. Long before this I read creator Jessica Abel’s Life Sucks and flipped through her Drawing Words & Writing Pictures: Making Comics: Manga, Graphic Novels, and Beyond. Both titles I enjoyed as part of keeping up with teen graphic novels and good works on comics creation. But from the moment I gazed at the gorgeous cover of La Perdida I knew I was in for a treat.

La Perdida means ‘the lost one’ and that’s what twenty something Mexican American Carla is as she arrives in Mexico City to search for the Mexican side of herself. At first she stays with an ex-boyfriend and hangs out with his associates, other Anglo expats. Then wanting something more authentic Carla finds Mexican friends, handsome Oscar, a DJ wannabee, and charmer Memo, a revolutionary wannabee. Oscar and Memo are involved with petty crimes but Carla turns a blind eye to their shenanigans. That naiveté will suck her in until she becomes an unwilling part of a serious criminal endeavor. Fascinating to the end – this story is all about finding oneself by getting lost.

Comic Artists Forum kicks off with James Anderson

Sunday, September 9 | 1:00-3:00 p.m. | Downtown Library | Multipurpose Room

Join us for a little world building even if it’s out of this world! Cartoonist James Anderson will show you how he has created a world full of alien flora and fauna for his web comic strip Ellie on Planet X!

Join the Forum to get fresh ideas for your next comics or graphic novel creation and/or feedback from fellow cartoonists. Drawing supplies will be provided, so drop in to draw, learn, and network with other cartoonists.

Creating Noir Comics with Shawn Martinbrough at 7:00 p.m.

Wednesday, August 29 | 7:00-8:30 PM | Downtown Library | Multipurpose Room

Learn how nationally-known graphic novelist Shawn Martinbrough became a graphic artist, illustrator, and novelist and about his approach to art.

Shawn's works include DMZ, Vol. 11: Free States Rising with Brian Wood; Batman: Detective Comics; Luke Cage Noir; a new monthly series, Thief of Thieves with Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead); and How to Draw Noir Comics: The Art and Technique of Visual Storytelling. If all the above isn’t enough, check out an interview regarding Shawn’s latest project The Ren.

The bulk of Shawn's work has been done for Marvel Comics, Vertigo and DC Comics. His client list includes Coca Cola/POWERade, The Hershey Company, The Topps Company, Cricket Wireless, Vibe, Bad Boy Entertainment, Penguin Books and McGraw-Hill.

Vault of Midnight will sell Shawn's books, and the event includes a book signing.

P.S. Summer Game Code Fans, here's a chance to get one of the last event game codes!

Comics Digital Coloring 101 for Adults and Older Teens

Learn how to use Adobe Photoshop Element to clean up your art, fill in line work with colors and half tones, create cool lettering, prep the finished page for printing, and more. Cartoonist Jerzy Drozd will be your instructor. Art will be provided for you to work with or we can scan your art for you to work on.

Select from one of the time slots listed below. Both sessions are identical. Registration is required. Register at any AADL location, online at aadl.org or call 327-8301.

Wednesday August 22 -- (3:00-5:00 PM) OR (6:00-8:00 PM) -- Downtown Library -- 3rd Floor Training Center

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