Posted in Comics, Graphic Novels

Dan Mishkin


Tell me a little about you: I’ve written comics professionally since 1979, and I’ve loved comics since the first time I read one at age 5. I think it’s fair to say that comics shaped who I am as a person — because they fired up my imagination, showing me that there were all sorts of possibilities in the world that I hadn’t dreamed of; and because they gave me role models whose actions taught me that the amount of power you have in life is not as important as how you use that power.

Describe event: The Ann Arbor Comic Arts Festival is a free, two-day celebration of comics held at the Ann Arbor District Library (downtown). There will be over 50 cartoonists and writers on hand who will not only have comics to sell, but are eager to share their passion for making and reading them. We’ll also have hands-on comics-making workshops, art demonstrations, interactive drawing games, and an awesome music and dance party!


What is the easiest part of the event? Most of the work I contribute to A2CAF takes place before the event, so the easiest part is attending — and especially having lots of conversations about comics with kids, teens and adults.

What is the hardest? The hardest part is making sure we’re sharing all the information we need to with our Artists Alley guests, library staff and the public in a timely way. And that we’re hearing about concerns when they first come up and are more manageable. There are a lot of people we need to keep in communication with from about January forward in order to make sure the two days in June go smoothly.


As a writer yourself, how did you get started? I was lucky that when I was trying to break into the comic book field, DC Comics was publishing anthology series featuring stories that were sometimes as short as 2 or 3 pages — usually science fiction, fantasy or horror and often with a twist ending. That made it easier for an editor to take a chance on a new artist or writer, knowing they wouldn’t ruin an issue with one clunker of a story, or worse, turn out 20 or more pages of unpublishable work that the company would still have to pay for. The first story I got to do in comics was the only idea one editor liked out of a dozen I sent him, and he gave me 3 pages to tell it.

What is your favorite comic you have worked on? I’ve had a lot of great experiences working on superheroes like Wonder Woman, Batman, and Superman — sometimes with editors and artists that I’d idolized in my childhood — as well as on titles like Star Trek and Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (and even a Roger Rabbit story). But my favorites have been the comic book series that I helped create, like Blue Devil and Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld

Why do you think kids should read comics? My hope is that comics can still do for kids today what they did for me as a child: expand their imaginations and help them see that life doesn’t have to be limited by other people’s expectations. Making comics can also be a great outlet for creativity and expressing emotions. And as many people have pointed out (though this is actually at the bottom of my personal what-comic-are-good-for list), they can be a stepping stone to all kinds of reading that some young people might have a hard time starting out with — which is fine by me as long as they don’t then abandon comics.

Can you recommend a comic series to me? If you haven’t read it already, the Zita the Spacegirl series by one of this year’s A2CAF guests, Ben Hatke, is one of my favorites. (Bridget note: agreed. I like Zita a lot) And I hear terrific things about Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur. You could even try my old Amethyst series, which has been collected into a single paperback volume.

Bridget Note: if you can join this event next weekend, I hope to see you there!

Posted in Book Review, Comics, Graphic Novels

Cleopatra in Space 4: The Golden Space


By Mike Maihack

You can’t buy this book quite yet but definitely put this on your to buy list. You can preorder it (my favorite comic book guy did for me). While you are at it, get the first three if you don’t have them already. This is a series I strongly recommend for kid readers!

It is about Cleopatra (our favorite Space heroine) going into space and not following directions, as usual. Seriously Cleopatra, can’t you follow the rules just once?

So the Golden Lion is a source of energy. Cleopatra is not supposed to have anything to do with it. But she does anyway. 

There is a bad guy out to get her. That add extra drama to the story.  I couldn’t put the story down. I have re read it so many times I have lost count.

She and Kensu get into a fight. They fight like they are siblings.

I absolutely love the artwork in this book. Cleopatra has some super awesome costumes. I made her uniform for Comic Con but really want to make her island look.


I was so excited to get my advanced copy of this book. Do you know how hard it is to wait a year for your favorite book series to update? The only downside is I have to wait a whole year for book 5 😭

I just love Cleopatra. She is my favorite book character (don’t worry Penguin, you are my favorite book animal character). 

I was reading Gronk the other day and immediately recognized artwork by Mike Maihack. I haven’t met him yet but one day I will and he can sign all my Cleopatra books! 😆

Me as Cleopatra with Captain Phasma

Ps check out this funny image at the back of the book

Posted in Comics, General

Making Stuff with Bob Bukoski


Bob Bukoski

 

http://www.MST3KBots.com

stores.ebay.com/mst3kbots

 how did you get into making things?

I’ve been making and crafting things since I was very young. I’ve always enjoyed making something out of nothing. When the first Star Wars movie came out I built a life size R2-D2 out of a barrel, a hair dryer dome and and some wood. I also sculpted a Darth Vader mask out of plaster to wear as a costume.

why did you create MST3K replicas?

I started making the MST3K robots shortly after I became a fan of the show when it first aired back in the 1990’s. It was obvious that the robots were made out of all kinds of junk parts so I started searching for all the correct pieces to make each robot. Eventually I got most of the parts and built my own versions of Crow and Tom Servo.

– what is your favorite thing about MST3K?

I’ve always loved the jokes used on MST3K. It fits in with my sense of humor. Also they do so many jokes with every episode that it’s easy to find some you like.

– do you have a favorite episode?

My favorite episode is probably episode #402 – The Giant Gila Monster. I’ve always liked monster movies

– do you have advice for kids who like to make things?

The best advice I can give young people is what ever you are passionate about just do it. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do it or discourage you from trying. The hockey player Wayne Gretzky once said “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”. If you really want to do something you have to take your shot.

Posted in Comics

Motor City Comic Con

Today we went to Motor Cuty Comic Con. Mom and I made my Cleopatra in Space costume early this morning! I had so much fun meeting comic book authors & illustrators. I even met LeVar Burton.

I was most excited to meet Tom Servo and Crow from MST3K!