News

New Book: Aspen Mascots Halloween ComicFest 2018!

 Aspen's 2018 Halloween ComicFest  Aspen Mascots  cover, art by yours truly, inked by  Gabe Carrasco , and colored by  Justice !

Aspen's 2018 Halloween ComicFest Aspen Mascots cover, art by yours truly, inked by Gabe Carrasco, and colored by Justice!

Exciting news-- this year's Halloween ComicFest titles have officially been announced, and this year, Aspen will be presenting Aspen Mascots as theirs! I did the cover for it, which was revealed yesterday-- and it's the first cover I've done since Everstar back in 2014. I'm so excited about how it turned out. 

The inside will be coloring-book style as usual, and it'll feature my pages from Aspen Mascots as well as games and puzzles! It'll be available FOR FREE at a participating comic book store near you this October.

A complete listing of all the HCF titles, including the HCF Commemorative T-Shirt by Eisner Award-winning creator Eric Powell, can be found in the July issue of Diamond Comic Distributors’ PREVIEWS catalog, on sale at all local comic shops on June 27th, 2018.
— HalloweenComicFest.com

Check out my posts about previous years' Halloween ComicFests with Aspen!

In Comic Stores Near You - Aspen Mascots

Today I've got some really exciting news... well, news that I probably should've shared two months ago but NEVERTHELESS...

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I've been working with Aspen Comics since late last year on an all-ages title called Mascots! The story is written by Vince Hernandez, penciled and inked by Joie Foster (ME, in case somehow you're lost and don't know whose blog you're on...), colored by Justice, lettered by Micah Myers, and edited by Gabe Carrasco.

What's it about??

 This sums is up rather nicely!

This sums is up rather nicely!

A milipede villain (villipede?) named Wormier must rescue his worm-y village by any means necessary, and builds a time machine to achieve his goals! And of course because it's time travel, nothing works the way he wants it to and he goes off on a zany adventure through time with his gryphon buddy, Griff. Yes, a gryphon named Griff. It's a thing. A ton of the mascots, creatures, and other critters from popular Aspen titles are involved, so be ready to get your cute-and-hilarious on!

 Featuring a sense of humor that is very in tune with my own...

Featuring a sense of humor that is very in tune with my own...

How do I buy the thing??

At your local comic book store in the back of any Aspen title that comes out this year! And... uh... turns out Chapter One came out in February, Chapter two in March, and Chapter Three this month... so I'm a bit late to the game in telling y'all about this. Whoops!

 At least that means you can binge read it?

At least that means you can binge read it?

Luckily, most comic stores have issues from the last several months so if you go, you can probably still find the books that my story is in. Also, here's a handy-dandy list to make your shopping trip easier:

  • Chapter 1 can be found in: Charismagic (vol 3) #1, Shrugged 3 #1 
  • Chapter 2 is in: Charismagic (vol 3) #2, Shrugged 3 #2, Jirni (vol 3) #1
  • Chapter 3 is in: Charismagic (vol 3) #3, Portal Bound #1

And for those of you who are visual:

 A gratuitous shot of my comp copies to make life easier for you... including Portal Bound which you should DEFINITELY check out since my buddy Gabe is a writer on it!

A gratuitous shot of my comp copies to make life easier for you... including Portal Bound which you should DEFINITELY check out since my buddy Gabe is a writer on it!

Buy and then read all the things, and then tell me what you think. Be gentle, us artists are delicate beings.

Chapter 4 comes out soon, so make sure you're ready for it! (Oh... uh. Speaking of, I'M not ready for it, so I better get back to the drawing table like NOW...)

 Typical artist.

Typical artist.

WonderCon Anaheim 2018!

My my, it has been a hot minute since I've updated my blog! I'm alive I swear-- and not only that, I'll be physically standing at my booth in Anaheim this weekend, March 23-25 (2018, if you happen to be reading this in the future)!

 I'll be in the Artist Alley at table B-43! Geez, I need to update my self portrait...

I'll be in the Artist Alley at table B-43! Geez, I need to update my self portrait...

From Friday to Sunday I'll be present with fistfuls of my comics and art for your viewing and buying pleasure! I also have the honor of showing with my normal show-partner-in-crime, Ria from Ria Art World! Yay! You'll spot us immediately, since we're the booth with All The Cute Stuff (TM). Hope to see you there!

Review of Heavenly Kibble Guardian Corgi from The Grand Geek Gathering Podcast

Don't you love it-- I tell you to start watching my Instagram Stories and them promptly stop updating both them and my blog, too? Fear not, I'm not dead! I went on a scheduled vacation up in rural Oregon where I didn't have much in the way of cell service or internet. Actually, it ended up turning into a roller coaster of a work-cation, but that's a story for another day.

 I may have had to work, but at least this was my surrounding scenery!

I may have had to work, but at least this was my surrounding scenery!

But I'm back. Huzzah! Half a day was spent fighting through my extremely backed up inbox, but I'm now back at work, back at Instagram Stories, and of course, back to the blog.

 These guys are the best. Seriously, they've got a lil' something for everyone!

These guys are the best. Seriously, they've got a lil' something for everyone!

I'm really excited to share both a review and an interview about my comic series Heavenly Kibble Guardian Corgi from the one and only Grand Geek Gathering podcast!

"The Grand Geek Gathering is a multimedia network dedicated to celebrating the geeky things we love that make us who we are. Every Gatherer has different interests, passions, and traditions. We love that. As you get to know us on the Gathering podcast, we do not hesitate to share those passions and interests (or shove it down your throat)."

They also have do videos, livestreams, and a slew of other things. I was really pleased and humbled to be the subject of both episodes 66 and 67 of their show "IndiComix."

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Episode 66 features an interview I did with Tyler, where we chat about Guardian Corgi, its influences, my inspirations, and a closer look at my process behind creating my comics. He's such a blast to talk to, so there's not a boring moment! (Approx 30 min)

Interview with IndiComix about Guardian Corgi


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Episode 67 is a fantastic in-depth, round table review of all three issues of Guardian Corgi! Tyler and Jeff covered their thoughts on my writing, jokes (they lived through the puns, hah!), art style, character design, and the colors.

They had delightfully nice things to say, including that they felt the fun, bright colors, and simplicity of the series made it very accessible and a different voice in the current indie comics industry. I was extremely pleased to hear that, as I aim to make my stories a fun experience for anyone-- comics fans or not!

Roundtable Review of Heavenly Kibble Guardian Corgi

Thank you for all the kind words, GGG!

Get Behind the Scenes With My Instagram Stories

Do you follow me on Instagram? Yes? Hooray, thank you! I hope you enjoy my posts there. I like posting in-progress shots of my work, pictures of me at conventions, and pics with my art buddies.

BUT.

There's more that you might be missing!

Instagram has a cool feature I've been playing with called "Stories." Much like the famed Snapchat, Stories lets me build a little fun narrative. They're usually snapshots or tiny videos of what I get up to throughout the day that give you an extra special behind-the-scenes peek.

 You can get quality humor like this!

You can get quality humor like this!

 And amusing, melting self portraits like this!

And amusing, melting self portraits like this!

 And don't forget great snaps of my Studio Assistant!

And don't forget great snaps of my Studio Assistant!

 Bits and bobs about my process as I go...

Bits and bobs about my process as I go...

 ... and weird closeups of the tips of my markers!

... and weird closeups of the tips of my markers!

These stories constantly update throughout the day as I add to it, so you can see what weird art-related (and sometimes totally personal) shenanigans I get up to! Some days I post more than others, and I'm sure some days I won't post at all. These stories also disappear after 24 hours, so it's always immediate "right now" content... and you might be missing stuff if you don't check in daily (that's the scheme, see? Good thinking Instagram. I don't even want to talk about how much of my day I spend watching others' stories...)

 Here's how to see 'em!

Here's how to see 'em!

So if you're on board, head to your Instagram app and check the top of your feed! There's a horizontal row of profile pictures with a little sunset-gradient circle around them. Those are all the people you follow whose Stories you might be missing! Alternatively, you can go to my profile and click on my pic (as seen above).

Hope you enjoy, and maybe it'll inspire you to try it for yourself, too! See ya there.

Aspen's Halloween ComicFest 2017

I am a part of Aspen's Halloween ComicFest's issue again this year!

 Aspen's HWCF 2017 Cover by  Simone Di Meo

Aspen's HWCF 2017 Cover by Simone Di Meo

"Aspen Comics' jam-packed, activity-filled, absolutely free coloring book returns... but, this time with a TWIST, and a whole gang of Aspen Animals ready to usher in a new era of fun! Readers can Choose Your Own Adventure in this time-spanning, fantasy realm-busting and speed-bursting new interactive tale! The Aspen Universe has been split into three and it's up to Aspen readers to help guide our hero creatures to safety and unite these worlds back together, all in one exciting coloring book!" - HalloweenComicFest.com

I did pencils and inks for one of the story branches in this choose your own adventure-style comic, which, I gotta say, is a pretty cool concept. I read a ton of those books as a kid, and loved them. Ah, the 90s. In addition, if you've followed my art for even five minutes you'll probably have figured out that I love drawing animals, so a title featuring just animal characters had me super jazzed.

And what is Halloween ComicFest, you may ask? Well, they made a handy video to explain it so that I don't have to!

This book will be available for FREE at your local comic book shop on October on Saturday, October 28. Make sure you get one for yourself!

Check out the full list of Halloween ComicFest titles here!

New Illustration and Website!

Today is a day of new things: new illustration, new website, and fun new career goals! Wait, what?! I’m getting ahead of myself, let me explain!

First– my new illustration, Spotted! A girl who rescues an injured pegasus must keep it hidden from the world that won’t understand its existence? This is totally one of my 12 year old self’s fantasies. Straight from the heart, for sure! This piece is meant to be a cover for a mock middle grade novel of my own invention showing us a tense moment when the girl’s pegasus is spotted!

Second– new website? Why yes, you're on it right now! Awhile back, I had some technical issues with my old illustration website (you remember JoieArt.net, right?) and I had to take it down, redirecting the URL to my comics website. Now that my comic site’s hosting plan is up for renewal, I decided to move hosts, relaunch my illustration website and consolidate everything on here! Make sure to change your bookmarks!

Third– over my career thus far I’ve worked in a lot of industries simultaneously including table top games, theme park design, animation, and primarily comics. Diversification is the name of the game when you’re a freelancer!

I’ve been wanting to reinvigorate the illustration side of my business for awhile now, and children’s literature has always appealed to me. When I found out about Middle Grade* publishing, I got extremely excited and wondered if it was something I could do, too. In my research so far, I’ve found quite a few all ages comics artists that I admire cross over into the line of Middle Grade illustration, and I think that’s got a lot to do with both industries having similar topics and art styles. Plus, I’ve had no less than three art friends/colleagues practically hit me over the head telling me to try it– so now it’s a new goal of mine to work toward!

Since this goal takes me into uncharted waters (for me), I have a ton of research to do! I’m excited though, because doing illustrations like this hits a nostalgic nerve that is hard to describe. My time between the ages of 9 and 13 is precious to me, as it was when my imagination was free to roam and my creativity was at an all time high. I’d love to recapture some of those moments in illustrations, and perhaps inspire a “Me too!” moment in my audience as well.

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So that said, there’ll be more illustrations like this popping up soon! I’ve got another one that’s almost finished, and quite a few more in the planning stages. Additionally, I’m going to the SCBWI conference this weekend here in Los Angeles and it promises to be an amazing time. I’ll be sure to blog about my experience there later!

*Middle grade is a term for books that typically are targeted at kids ages 9-12, give or take

Last Minute Show: RoninCon

So a new show popped up this year down in Little Tokyo-- Ronin Expo! I hadn't heard of it before, but they had some last minute table openings for the one day show, and I jumped on it! It was my very first outdoors convention ever, so I'd never had to take wind into consideration with my display before. I didn't have too many problems, but some of my neighbors were just about blown away.

I was also positioned directly in front of the main stage, which had its pros and cons. It made it super loud so I could hardly hear customers when they spoke, but when traffic was slow, at least I had a show to watch-- and there was this really cool cosplay group called The Corps Dance Crew that performed all day! Cosplayers that dance! My college-age-cosplay self was just pleased as punch, since that's basically what I had wanted to once upon a time.

Overall it was a fun, short, and affordable show, and as an added bonus it was well-situated for lots of great food!

WonderCon 2017

WonderCon was a smashing success yet again! This is seriously my favorite show of the whole year: the fans are great, the staff is helpful, and not least at all because I don't have to travel for it!

 Testing a display option

Testing a display option

I of course had Corgi #3 available, and came very close to selling out! I'm also happy to report that I sold out of all of my copies of the MANthology. I also had a few new pins, and finally launched a few food art-related items. Wine-o-clock, naturally, sold the best.

I also finally caved and found a new way to organize my pins. This reduces the headache of digging to find whatever pin a customer is requesting off the display board!

When we first arrived, we were disappointed to discover that we were jammed directly behind a giant pillar. This made traffic around our booth extremely tight and difficult to navigate, and it impact our sales in a huge way. Luckily the WonderCon staff was helpful, and they allowed us to move to another vacant table that faced an aisle.

The fanbase that turned out to support Corgi #3 was extremely heartwarming. The amount of times I was scolded for not having the new issue last year was practically uncountable. Point taken, I will make sure Corgi #4 is on time for WonderCon next year!