Will Eisner Week 2014

Will Eisner Week 2014

Will Eisner was born March 6th, 1917, so the Will Eisner Week of Eisner- and comics-themed events is scheduled around that week each year.  Click here for a full list of events, the world over.

New York starts the week off with a New York Comics & Picture-Story Symposium special event with DC Comics writer and editor Paul Levitz on Eisner’s contribution to the rise of the American graphic novel.

If you want to learn to cartoon like the great Eisner himself, you can always learn from his instructional books on comics and cartooning:

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Eisner in Brooklyn (and in your Library)

Eisner's A Contract with God at Scott Eder Gallery

We’re about half-way through a 2 month exhibit in Brooklyn’s Scott Eder Gallery of original art from Will Eisner‘s seminal 1978 tenement comic, A Contract with God, which helped set off the graphic novel movement.  It’s the first time this art, including original pages as well as preparatory sketches & drawings, is on view (and for sale, if you got that kind of money), so definitely worth a visit.

Also, I mentioned the Will Eisner Award for Libraries, awarded at the annual American Library Association conference (which I was at), and this year’s winners are listed here; lucky you if you happen to be served by the Auburn GA, Middlebury IN, or East Meadow NY library systems…  Here’s the full list of comics they all got.

Comic Con at your Library Con

So tomorrow I’m flying out to Chicago for the 2013 American Library Association annual conference.  Thankfully, there’s a set of events I have to go to, otherwise I wouldn’t have known how to choose…  However, I was excited to see there’s a whole con within a con devoted to Comics, called the GraphiCon!  Click the link to see all the relevant panels, talks, and events.

There’s a whole Artists Alley with big names like Raina Telgemeier, Gene Luen Yang, Faith Erin Hicks, & Paul Pope, and even a Zine Pavilion of local zinesters!  There’s the annual Eisner award for Libraries that provides one lucky library with a full set of Eisner‘s work, works nominated for this year’s Eisner Awards, and a further budget for buying comics.

Individual creators like Dave Roman, Matt Kindt, & Jeffrey Brown get their own spotlight events, there are plenty of panels on new releases, discussions on comics for teens, library collecting of comics, comics in the age of e-publishing, and even talks and events about making comics!

All this on its own would be a pretty excellent con in its own right  😛

Comics in the Museum

Building Stories by Chris Ware

Building Stories by Chris Ware

Hi all, sorry for the intermittent transmissions lately, schoolwork is ramping up alright…  Here’s something I’ve been meaning to listen to & share for a while; a conversation between cartoonist Chris Ware and novelist Zadie Smith at the New York Public Library.

EDIT: Sorry, embedding isn’t working, here’s the Original audio.

Not sure what they have in common, but always cool to see cartoonists taken seriously!  And Ware‘s a prime candidate for that obviously…

Speaking of, in my internship with the library of a preeetty big name modern art museum, I’m always on the look out for comic-themed books in their collection…  I’ve seen a couple on Robert Crumb and one D&Q anthology, very cool, then yesterday I saw Will Eisner‘s textbook on comics, Comics and Sequential Art!  Wonder when we’ll ever see any comics work represented in this museum though…

Comics and Sequential Art by Will Eisner

Comics and Sequential Art by Will Eisner

Happy Birthday Will Eisner!

The creator of The Spirit and a pivotal figure in the development of the American graphic novel, Will Eisner would’ve been 96 today.  (Centennial only four years away!  I have centennial mania this year…)  As the namesake of the most prestigious awards in the comics industry, the Eisners, you get a good feel for his stature in the field.

Will Eisner Week is an annual celebration of his legacy as well as a time to promote comics, literacy, and free speech, and as such is held in association with the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund.  This year’s theme is “read a graphic novel”, which shouldn’t be too hard for most of us, right?

New York, being Eisner’s hometown, is naturally an epicenter for celebrations, with three events, including…

And of course, there are events elsewhere (tellingly, Portland comes in second place, with two events).  And wherever you are, you can at least do your part by reading a graphic novel!