Monday, April 30, 2012

Portland Questions 52: Leia Weathington

Brinson Thieme 
Leia Weathington is a writer and  illustrator recently moved from San Francisco now living in Portland, Oregon. She is part of the San Francisco based Couscous Collective. She is working with Erika Moen in the new kickstarter  project Smut Peddler.

She has a long running web comic called Legend of Bold Riley. The strip was collected and colored by Vanessa Lynn.   It features several artists, Jason Thompson, Kelly McKlellan, and Konstantin Pogorelov.   It will be published by Northwest Press in the summer.

You can catch up with her on the podcast Chronicle of the Nerds and was recently on Nerd Fight II.

Her blog is A Happy Go Lucky Scamp

And her team just won the Art Battle at Stumptown 2012.

What projects are you working on currently?
I'm wrapping up book one of The Legend of Bold Riley, a full color book out this summer from Northwest Press. My big projects for this year is the art for a detective comic called K.I.M Investigations with local writer Ben Coleman and the the script for a Sci-fi story for Madison, WI artist Joanna Estep. I've also started scripting Bold Riley, book 2.

What is your artistic Process?
When I'm writing I tend to sit staring off into space for an inordinate amount of time just thinking of how I want to go about a particular story then have bursts of actually writing. When it comes to the drawing side of things I try to make my self do something everyday. Writing is much more natural for me than drawing so in order for things to get done art wise I have to make myself draw even when I really don't want to. Even if a drawing doesn't turn out the way I like there is at least something on the page for me to work off of when I do get in a really good groove later.

When are story writer, what is your process working with the illustrator?  Do you do more writing or Illustrating?
I worked with 5 other artists for Bold Riley and made the mistake at first of trying to really tightly control the visuals of the comic. That was something I learned to back off from pretty fast. If you are working with artists you probably decided to get into a collaboration with them for a reason. SO TRUST YOUR ARTIST! What I've started doing is making model sheets characters, objects and places that must look a certain way to maintain continuity in the story, after that I send photo references, script and descriptions of mood and setting and turn the artist loose to have fun with it.

Jason Thompson
I've prefer to write but I've been trying to refine my skills as an artist and work harder at pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I guess when I unironically came up with a concept of a race of characters whose features ended at the knee and floated around an entirely forested environment was when I realized I should cut the shit and draw things I don't like in order to not be a laughingstock.

What Comic/ Trade would you recommend?
Oh my god! Everyone, go buy Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez, Locke & Key! Trade 5 should be out pretty soon and it's one of the most creative, addicting series I've ever read and the art is tasty as hell.

But, uh...I've also heard the Bold Riley book coming out from Northwest Press this summer is supposed to be pretty good too...

What Comic/ Trade would you recommend to someone new to comics?
That one really depends on what sort of stories a person likes! For younger readers Jeff Smiths 'Bone' and Gene Yangs 'American Born Chinese' and the always fun Cartoon History of the World by Larry Gonick. For older readers try Brian K Vaughan Ex Machina, David Bs Epileptic and Fumi Yoshinagas Antique Bakery. Actually everyone read everything by Fumi Yoshinaga. She's a rockstar.

How involved are you with the illustration, the look and feel, of the books you write?
I always want to be involved in setting the tone of a comic but I don't ever want to step in and try to dictate the style or nitty gritty layouts of a comic because that's the artist job and I don't want to throw salt in their game. I'm working pretty much freelance so I'm the one picking my colaborators on comics. If I didn't like the way they drew I wouldn't work with them. Every artist works differently too, Some want very, very detailed scripts that go over panel sizes and "camera" directions, Some work better with a loose script that opens up the possiblities in layout. It's just knowing your collaborators and playing to each others strengths.

What skill would you like to learn?
All of the photoshops and the computer bits and why my scanner makes that noise like I spilled coffee on it but I haven't spilled ANYTHING on it I promise.

What's the most important thing you've learned?
For the love of god be organized, don't take on too much at once, If you leave an illustration on the floor the cat will vomit on it.

Do you have a collection? If so, what is one of the items you're most proud of?
All of my hard covers editions and and everything I've bought directly from an artist at a convention. I can't pick just one thing I love...That's like picking which burrito filling I want, it changes daily.

What is your favorite genre of Comics?
Horror! or anything gory, gross, sticky and serious. The weirder the better.

What is your favorite TV show/ movie?
Avatar the Last Airbender and Black Books for TV shows and Strange Days and Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs for movies.

How does the Portland comics culture shapes your work?
It makes me work harder! When 18 of your friends are coming out with hardcover trades every other week it really lights a fire under your ass.

Konstantin Pogorelov

What was your first comic convention?
Alternative Press Expo, San Francisco in 2007 I think.

What is your favorite part of comic conventions?
Meeting new people and going to the after parties.

If you weren’t doing comics what would you do?
There are things other than comics? I don't... I don't think I understand. I guess I'd be a toothless boxcar hobo, eatin' beans from a can and drinking Thunderbird.

Do you have a favorite restaurant that you would recommend?
Fonzi’s Bakabana Cabana on SE 32nd and Hawthorne is one of my favorite food carts. I always get the jungle bowl with sweet African chicken. I could eat that every day.

How long have you lived in Portland, what made you choose Portland?
I moved up here in August 2011 from San Francisco mainly to focus on my comics career and because I fell in love.

Kelly McKlellan
What is your favorite part of Portland?
The bars! Nowhere does happy hour like Portland.

Where in Portland/ Oregon would you most like to visit?
I'd like to go to Astoria at some point and I haven't been to the Rose
Garden yet.

Would you like to Illustrate for another media? or conversely, how would you feel about Illustrate a comic of a character from a different media, for example, Dr. Who, James Bond? What would you explore?
I really like doing art for bands. I listen to a lot of music when I'm working. I've done some illustration for local band Asteroid M and I should be doing the album art for Hail the Sun, a band in California.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Naked Boy by Daniel Duford Debuts at Stumptown

Daniel Duford announced the publication of The Naked Boy Part 3 on this lucky Friday the 13th. This is the final chapter of the story.  The book is available through Lulu Publishers.
 Here are some blurbs from the book cover:
 "Think of The Naked Boy, by Daniel Duford, as a Marvel Comic written by Alejandro Jodorowsky and Woody Guthrie, penciled by Jose Orozco, inked by Steve Ditko, lettered by Walt Whitman, and published by the members of the Ashcan School. It is a phantasmagoria of myth and history that contains legions, speaking in the grand, rowdy, mournful voice of America herself.  Jon Raymond author of The Half Life and Sustainability."

"Daniel Duford’s The Naked Boy succeeds where Horatio Greenough’s statue of George Washington failed by creating a true representation of the mythological spirit of the United States.  Although each are cartoon exaggerations in their own right, Duford’s work displays the dark undercurrent of U.S. history that is such a necessary element for telling the whole story.  The Naked Boy lives in a murky world of fear and competition, one that is vivid and lived in.  It’s a world that you may not want to live in yourself, but the truth is that you already do.   Ryan Alexander-Tanner, To Teach:  the Journey, in Comics."

"The Naked Boy is a great American epic in the raw, revolutionary spirit of Whitman’s Leaves of Grass.  Daniel Duford’s graphic road trip presents compellingly strange characters as well as familiar faces: Woody Guthrie, Angela Davis, Frederick Douglass, Walt himself. “As you see,” declares Sitting Bull to the Naked Boy in Part 3, “we are very much alive.”  I felt invigorated, too, by the energy, intensity, and meaningfulness of this journey—at once so dark, and so enlightening."
Karen Karbiener, NYU Professor and Walt Whitman scholar

05/05 - FCBD events @ TFAW


Contact: Elisabeth Forsythe
Things From Another World


What: Free Comic Book Day
Where: Portland TFAW, 4133 NE Sandy Blvd. Portland, OR 97214
Beaverton TFAW, 4390 SW Lloyd Ave. Beaverton, OR 97005
Milwaukie TFAW, 10977 SE Main St. Milwaukie, OR 97222
When: Saturday, May 5 from 9 am-7 pm
More Information:

April 16, 2012, Portland OR--Free Comic Book Day (FCBD), the annual event in which participating comic shops give away comic books absolutely free to anyone who comes into their stores, returns Saturday, May 5, and Things From Another World is where you'll find all of the action! Doors open at 9 am at TFAW's Portland, Milwaukie, and Beaverton stores. Make sure to stop by for special free comics--while supplies last--as well as amazing signings, big savings, and more. The comics retailer will also offer free comics online at

"Free Comic Book Day is an opportunity for us to reach out to the community and offer entertainment the entire family can enjoy--and afford," said TFAW Senior Director of Retail Operations Andrew McIntire. "This is a great event that we look forward to every year."

TFAW has an incredible slate of comic book creators signing at their Portland and Beaverton locations, including several artists from this year's official FCBD comics, like Ben Bates (Sonic the Hedgehog), Jonathan Case (The Guild), and Steve Lieber (Alabaster). Plus, meet Terry and Rachel Dodson (Uncanny X-Men), Emi Lenox (EmiTown), Amy Mebberson (Strawberry Shortcake), Jeff Parker (Hulk), Chris Samnee (Captain America & Bucky), and the Witch Doctor team, Brandon Seifert and Lukas Ketner!

May 5 also kicks off TFAW's astonishing Mega Sale, both in stores and online. Customers will save 50-70% on comics, graphic novels, toys, statues, and more. In stores, customers will also enjoy incredible savings on all back issues, including hundreds of issues new to each location.

As a special bonus, Stormtroopers and other Star Wars characters from Cloud City Garrison and Kashyyyk Base Rebel Legion will "patrol" at the Beaverton TFAW, while the pirates from PDX YAR will invade the Portland and Milwaukie locations--and demonstrate their sword-fighting skills. Get the complete schedule below, and see you May 5!

About Things From Another World:
Founded in 1979, Things From Another World is the premier retailer of comics, toys, collectibles, and pop-culture geek goodness, both in Portland, Oregon and online at



Starting at 12:01 am PST: Customers will have at least two FCBD comics placed in their in-stock purchases, while supplies last.


9:00 am: Doors open!
12:00-2:00 pm: Signings with the following creators:
* Jonathan Case - Artist for Dark Horse Comics' The Guild FCBD book
* Terry and Rachel Dodson - Artists for Uncanny X-Men and Defenders
* Emi Lenox - Creator of EmiTown
* Steve Lieber - Artist for Alabaster, featured in Dark Horse's FCBD books
* Jeff Parker - Writer for Hulk and Thunderbolts
Plus: The pirates of PDX YAR.


9:00 am: Doors open!
2:00-4:00 pm: Signings with the following creators:
* Ben Bates - Artist for Archie's Sonic the Hedgehog FCBD book
* Amy Mebberson - Artist for Strawberry Shortcake and Muppets
* Chris Samnee - Artist for Ultimate Comics Spider-Man and Serenity
* Brandon Seifert and Lukas Ketner - Writer and artist for Witch Doctor
All day (while supplies last):
Free Starbucks coffee for customers starting at 9:30 am!
Demos and  giveaways from Game Trader.
Free cookies from Subway.
Plus: Stormtroopers and other Star Wars characters from Cloud City Garrison and Kashyyyk Base Rebel Legion.


9:00 am: Doors open--enjoy free coffee from Spring Creek Coffee House, while supplies last!
10:00 am: Trackers Earth will demonstrate how to shoot a bow and arrow like Hawkeye! (Note: foam arrows only.)
12:00-4:00 pm: Live-action Heroclix.
All day: Kids' art table.
Plus: The pirates of PDX YAR.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Portland Questions 51: Aaron Duran

Aaron Duran  is a writer and media producer in Portland, Oregon.   He is the host of Geek in the City Radio (alongside co-host Scott Dally), webmaster of, and a regular guest on the Cort and Fatboy Show  and Funemployment Radio show.  He is also a writer for newarama.  Duran organized a failed effort in 2008 to rename Portland's 42nd Avenue to Douglas Adams Boulevard after science fiction author Douglas Adams.

Upset with the current state of comics, Aaron, began working on his own comic in 2007.   He started the writing La Brujeria, and when he was joined by artist James Sinclair the story solidified.      La Brujeria's plot involves a Mexican American woman named Althalia who has a temp job at a Pawn Shop.    But, with Werewolves, Elementals, & Chupacabra as co-workers;  she was recruited by the Golden Bought Pawn Shop’s real goal of fighting the monsters of the under the streets of Portland.        At present the comic is available at most comic stores in Portland  and you can or it online at Geek in the City.    If you are going to be at Stumptown you can pick up the latest  issue 3 of La Brujeria

He has started his radio show up again called Crimson Mist, co-created by Jayesunn Krump. 

Doug Dorr:    What projects are you working on currently?
I am in the middle of a couple of projects at this time. Currently, James Sinclair and Jenn Alvin are working on issue 3 of La Brujeria, which will debut at the 2012 Stumptown Comics Fest in Portland. I am also wrapping up a new script for an all-new Adventures of the Crimson Mist audio play for Comic Book Month in April with the Incubator Lounge. And, as always, I work on the weekly podcast, Geek in the City Radio.

DD:  What is your artistic Process?
Coffee. Lots of coffee. Okay, seriously. My process is a lot like a sprinter. I try and write about 6 – 7 hours a day, but very little of it is usable. Most of what I write is just dreck, something to keep me going through the motions. However, when I dive into a project, I become incredibly focused and very hard to distract. So while I say it takes me a week or so to complete a draft on a script, in all honesty, I tend to burn through the first draft in a constant 8 – 10 hour writing marathon. Then, it's all about the re-writes.

DD:  When are writing, what is your process working with the artist?
It all depends on the artist. When I'm writing descriptive scenes in a comic, my style is very flexible according to the needs of the artist. As I have a background in film / video production, my writing has a very cinematic style to it. As such, a lot of my scenes are broken down like camera angles and shots. With James, the artist on La Brujeria, we've got a pretty strong short-hand now. So, I can simply write “horrible beast dude” and he knows exactly what I mean. But, were I to work with someone new, I'd be far more descriptive.

DD:  What Comic/ Trade would you recommend?
Right now? The Sixth Gun is still my favorite series on the shelves. There might be single issues from other comics that hit me harder once in a while. However, month in, month out, it's Sixth Gun that turns in the win for me.

DD:  What Comic/ Trade would you recommend to someone new to comics?
It all depends on the person. If they only know superhero books from films, and want to read more capes and cowls, I'd recommend Joss Whedon's run on Astonishing X-Men, The Sinestro Corp War from Johns, or Bendis' Ultimate Spider-Man. But, if they want something else, I've got a short list. Stumptown from Oni Press, Chew from Image, Northlanders and Scalped from Vertigo, and of course, The Sixth Gun.

DD:  What skill would you like to learn?
In comics? Pencilling. My art skills are some of the worst you will ever see. I've taken courses, I've practiced for years, I've even had highly talented friends and professionals give me tips. Nothing. These fingers just can't make the pretty pictures. It's very frustrating, as I have one or two highly personal stories I'd like to tell, stories that I want to be 100% from me. But I get so frustrated with my own lack of penciling skills, I keep pushing them back.
DD:  What's the most important thing you've learned?
Be nice. No, really. You never know if the person you're complaining to or about will someday be someone you have to work with. Or, even worse, someone who could review your work one day. Years ago, I was all about making as much noise as possible in order to be noticed. Making noise meant yapping off about things I knew little or nothing about. It was all about what I thought, and as the consumer, I just had to be right! Well, it's one thing to have an opinion, it's another to be a total a-hole about it. I was that a-hole, but I got really lucky. Lucky in that the people I rambled on about saw that I was being just that, a young and hungry a-hole and let it slide when I grew older and more mature. Not everyone is going to be that lucky. So, be nice. Also, hit your deadline. If you can be nice and hit your deadlines, you'll go far.

DD:  Do you have a collection?   If so, what is one of the items you're most proud of?
Oh, I have quite a few collections. What good geek doesn't? I've got a fair amount of Batman action figures, I've recently started collecting original comic book art, and I have all the Hallmark Star Trek Ships ornament collection. However, when I think about the items I always unpack first, the ones I always show people, regardless of their interest, it would have to be my RPG book collection. Don't know why, but I'm obsessed with collecting first editions of various Role Playing Games. Haven't even played most of them, but I love to collect and read them.

DD:  What is your favorite genre of Comics?
Cliché as it sounds, I'm a child of superheroes and I still love the genre to this day. Weird / supernatural mash-ups are a very close second.

DD:  What is your favorite TV show/ movie?
Currently, it's A Game of Thrones. All time? Star Trek: The Next Generation. I know it isn't the best, it isn't even the best Trek (that's Deep Space Nine). But, it has a pretty hard hold upon my nostalgia string and it just ain't gonna' let go.

DD:  How does the Portland comics culture shapes your work?
It doesn't really shape it. Well, that's not true. There are so many great and talented creators in this town, it forces me to keep up my game and skills. Not that I think I'd ever knowingly phone in a project, being around so many talented people keeps me honest.

DD:  What was your first comic convention?
This dingy little “convention” in Reno, NV. A couple of shops set-up this 10 – 12 table convention in the middle of Old Town Mall. It was really just a flea market with some collectors selling their stuff, but to my 10 year-old eyes, it was the most awesome event of all time.

DD:  If you weren’t doing comics what would you do?
I don't honestly know. Some form of writing. Some form of narrative writing. I love to tell stories, so I'd find some way to tell my stories. Or, I'd actually become a chef like my grandparents wanted.

DD:  Do you have a favorite restaurant that you would recommend?
Autentica in North Portland. They serve some of the finest Mexican food in the city.

DD:  How long have you lived in Portland, what made you choose Portland?
I moved to Portland in September of 1998, so I've been here for over 13 years. (Long enough for locals to call me an official “Portland Native). I moved here to become a chef. I was enrolled in the Western Culinary Institute, event went through orientation. Then, panic set in and I canceled the whole dang thing.

DD:  What is your favorite part of Portland?
I love the weather here. Honestly. The clouds and the rain, I love it. It also helps me appreciate our summers, even if I am one of those people that starts to complain around August about the heat. And, I love how every neighborhood in Portland it like a small town unto itself.

DD:  Where in Portland/ Oregon would you most like to visit?
I wander around the city a lot, so I don't miss much in Portland. I'd like to spend more time in the northern coast, I love that region. I'd also like to explore more of Eastern Oregon. I've only passed through it a couple of times, so I'd love to explore some of the region.

DD:  Would you like to write/Illustrate for another media?   Or write a character from another media, for example, Dr. Who, James Bond?  What would you explore?
Well, I wouldn't want to stop writing comics. I don't see comics as a stepping stone to other media, but I am also open to writing within others. I love the idea of writing for video games. The potential for branching and interactive stories is something I really dig and I think games are the perfect format for that. As to other characters. Well, I wouldn't want to suggest I'd do any better than people currently writing known characters, because I highly doubt that. Still, I'd be lying if I said I didn't want to add my stories to Batman, as well as Star Wars and Star Trek. I know, it's stunningly predictable, but these universes had such an influence on me, it'd be a blast to add my own.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Prepare to Die By Paul Tobin

 Paul Tobin. Night Shade, $26.99 (350p) ISBN 978-1-59780-420-2
"The deconstruction of superheroes has been accomplished before, but rarely has it been done with the vigor and affection of comics veteran Tobin in his nearly pitch-perfect superhero tale for grownups. Steve Clarke’s teen years of playing baseball, smoking pot, and falling in love were interrupted by a catastrophic accident that transformed him into Reaver, an indestructible muscleman whose every punch takes a year of life from his victim. As an adult, Steve undertakes a journey of redemption and retribution to his small Oregon hometown, grimly aware that supervillain Octagon has given him only two weeks to live. With minimal angst, maximum humanity, and equal parts hilarity and pathos, Tobin (Marvel Adventures; Gingerbread Girl) crafts an entirely new collection of heroes and villains and their corresponding secret identities against a backdrop of fierce action, sexy romance, warm nostalgia, and wry observations on being a superhero in the age of YouTube. This is a contemporary and satisfying paean to superheroes and their fans. (June) "

Monday, April 02, 2012

04/03 Avengers VS X-Men LAUNCH PARTY with Fraction & Cebulski! @ Excalibur

"April 3, 2012  8:00pm until 10:00pm

Location:   2444 SE Hawthorne Blvd Ste 1
Portland, OR.

The Battle begins at Excalibur! Join us for the Official Portland Launch Party for AvX!! This Tuesday evening, get AvX #1 at Portland's #1 destination for comic book adventure!

Our special guests are some of the talent responsible for this blowout battle royale between our favorite heroes:

-->AvX co-writer MATT FRACTION (Casanova, Invincible Iron Man, Defenders, Fear Itself)

-->Marvel talent scout/writer/editor CB CEBULSKI

These two gentlemen are among the top talents responsible for all the action and excitement that comes out of The House of Ideas, you won't want to miss out on hearing them discuss their work and what goes into creating such a giant comics event such as AvX!

We polled our customers, and your voice was loud and clear, Excalibur is officially an X-MEN ally in this melee! Stop by for exclusive goodies!

It's ON!"