World Tsunami Awareness Day

Today has been designated by the UN as World Tsunami Awareness Day.

tsunami

This comic was drawn for popular science magazine Wetenschap in Beeld, where I have a steady feature now!

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The Coloring Process

I live in the fortunate circumstance that my husband Yiri is also an artist and helps me with my books. Not only does he provide necessary feedback and peptalks, he has taken on the coloring ever since 2009, when we started Philosophy: a Discovery in Comics.

Since then, he has colored Religion, Science – which almost killed him (no kidding! He had a heart attack while we were working on that 192-page monster) – and World Domination. It took a lot from his health and especially caused chronic shoulder and neck pains. So we decided to do things differently for the book about Love; after all, too much love will kill you, as the song says.

Our coloring process in the last year has been this:

107-process

We’re in the last phase of the book now, the deadline for the publisher is next month. So far, this new routine is fast, fun and relatively stress-free. And Yiri is not half dead, which is a great relief to both of us.

Finishings

When making a graphic novel, there are many milestones that can be celebrated with a heart-felt: “Finished!”. There’s the moment all the pages are drawn; then when they are all digitalized, lettered and put in the right order; when they’re all colored; when the file is sent to the publisher; when the file is sent to the printer’s; and then, finally, when the actual book arrives and can be held in my greedy hands. Finished!

booklet

Yiri and I especially celebrate the first finishing: when all the pages are drawn. It has become tradition to make a little doodle in a tiny booklet, marking time and date.

Here’s the first Finishing, in 2009, when we made Philosophy: a Discovery in Comics:

philosophy

This one was drawn a year later, in 2010, when finishing Religion: a Discovery in Comics:

religion

Science: a Discovery in Comics was a heavy one – it was finished in the summer of 2012:

science

The fourth book, about World Domination, is not out in the States yet, but I have just made an info page on my site if you want to take a look. This is how I felt when finishing it, in 2015:

worlddomination

And just a few weeks ago, the last pages of the book about Love were drawn!

love

We’re now in the process of finishing up the other finishings: the colors, the text corrections, the index etc. But those are minor finishings – the big one is out of the way!

Here’s another drawing from the little book, by the way, the only one in English:

doumph

Words to live by!

Breaking the 10 – miraculous medal

Here are two pages from our book BREAKING THE 10 from NBM Publishing in which the main character, David throws away his ‘miraculous medal’ to our lady in disgust (after the death of his wife and child).

b10_042-lo

 

b10_043-lo

My own ‘miraculous medal’ was indeed given to me by my grandmother in Scotland after a trip to Lourdes, France – when i was about 18.

But dont worry, i did not throw it away. I use it as a keyring.

BREAKING THE 10

“Fresh, challenging and superbly enthralling, this is a book no saint or sinner should miss”

Get the book here folks:

http://www.nbmpub.com/comicslit/storyoflee/storyofllee_home.html

The Cover of Love

At the moment I’m working on my fifth book in the ‘Discovery in Comics’-series: about Love.

The Dutch version will come out in February, and this is the time to frantically work on the last pages, promotional blurbs for the publisher and the finalisation of the cover design.

It all started months ago, when I thought I had a great idea that would convey both the loveliness of love as well as its darker connotations: a heart-shaped hole in the ground, with different fumes coming out… Here’s the sketch version:

liefde1_coverzw

My colorist/husband Yiri and I then came up with three different color versions, which we presented to my helpful Facebook-friends:

liefde_covertest

This was the winning design we settled on:

liefde1_cover

As the months passed, this cover increasingly irked me, but I couldn’t put my finger on why. Then someone commented that they did not really see the heart as a heart-shaped hole, and that did it. Time for a complete revision.

I decided I wanted to incorporate some traditional “lovey” symbols – like hearts and roses. Roses with thorns, of course:

liefde2_roses

And then I’d have the Loving Couple (me and Yiri) swing precariously over them-

liefde2_us

add a heart and some color, and this was the result:

liefde2_cover

I felt good about this one for a few days, then I started to get annoyed by the anxious looks on our faces. Love is fun! At least, mostly. So the precarious swing went out of the window, and I drew us cozily snuggled together in a rose…

liefde3_bits

Now ain’t that sweet? I added some bees and a ladybug, and the final result is this:

liefde3-cover

There. This one’s probably going to be it – although you never know. At least it has that sweet & fun love vibe I was going for.

Whoever said that Love is a lot of work, was definitely not kidding! And that’s just the cover!

Breaking the 10 – the duck’s prayer

pond prayer joke

 

I’m especially proud of this Duck version  of a well known prayer that I made for our book with NBM, ‘Breaking the 10’. It shows the lighter side of the book and Mr Black’s trademark sarcastic wit.

Check the book out here folks:

http://www.nbmpub.com/comicslit/storyoflee/storyofllee_home.html