Love is out there!

My newest book, about Love, is now out in The Netherlands! It is a colorful, funny, semi-autobiographical and informational comic about all the ins and outs of love – with dating tips, a critical look at romance, notes on sex, kids, the seven year itch and a whole lot more!

liefde-stapel

This month is all about book promotion – there will be an official presentation in bookstore Scheltema in Amsterdam on February 9, then I will be at YaYCon on 19 February where I’ll sell the book and be on a panel, and on 4 and 5 March I’ll be at De Stripdagen in Rijswijk.

love-banner

It feels a bit strange. The world is on fire at the moment, every day seems to bring new fear and anger, and here I am, trying to generate attention for something as silly and trivial as love…

But is it? Is Love not exactly the thing that is lacking in the world right now? Is it not what all the protests are about? About this great unifying force that seems to be under threat? Is it not what all people really want – to love and be loved, and to have a safe place where to do just that? It goes beyond left or right, beyond politics and culture. Love is of all times, of all people. And yet, it’s still this mysterious energy, or as I say in my book [SPOILER ALERT]: “Love is an everyday mystery.”

So I’ll just give in to it, and make sure to enjoy it: after all, this book is also a celebration of the love in my life, with Yiri in the center, and a great circle of beloved family and friends around us.

There’s nothing wrong in reminding ourselves every now and then.

marriage2

(our marriage in 2009, p. 77)

 

Tidings of Comfort and Joy

Many best wishes to everyone this Christmas and let’s hope for a New Year with many new chances and opportunities for good. The past year was discomforting in many ways – it even affected my comic character Minnie, who’s usually pretty carefree…

minnie-freedom

 

Here’s the New Year’s card Yiri and I have sent out this year – it’s based on a New Year’s card from 1917, exactly 100 years ago! It references voting because that’s what we’re going to do in The Netherlands in a few months.

2017

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.

My local Omnipresence at the Stripdagen Haarlem

This weekend I will be at the Stripdagen in Haarlem, Holland’s most prestigious comics convention! Where to find me? Almost everywhere!

expoplan1280x720

First of all, there’s a big expo of my religion-related comics work in the beautiful St. Bavochurch, right in the middle of town. It features pages from my graphic novel Religion: a Discovery in Comics, but also other work, such as Reverend De Heer and this church window depicting the shared paths of Christianity and Islam, almost 3 meters high!

kerkraam-print

The expo has been up since end of April (and will be on for another two weeks) and has already garnered lovely comments from visitors all over the world:

guestbook

Another place where my work can be found at the Stripdagen, is in De Nieuwe Vide, where the expo ¡VIVA PONTIAC! takes place, about artist Peter Pontiac who passed away last year. I made a comic about it which can be seen in print, and there’s work from my amazing yet humble husband Yiri T. Kohl as well – Yiri was heavily influenced by the work of Pontiac, and even succeeded him as illustrator for magazine Mainline in the 1990s. Here’s an example of his work that can also be found at the expo:

yiri_mainline-a

Last week, I got the surprising news that my webcomic has been shortlisted for the Comik Web Award. I didn’t even know I was nominated! In the Philharmonie there’s an expo of all the shortlisted webcomics. To cash in on this exposure I ordered another print run of my webcomics collection, which will be for sale for 5 euros:

controlroom

And then, last but not least, I will manifest in the flesh – on both Saturday and Sunday, you can find me at my own table in de Grote Zaal of the Philharmonie, together with Yiri and a bunch of our books:

beursplattegrondhaarlem2016

I hope to see some of you there! Come by for freebies and a chat!

 

Happy New Year!

Here’s the New Year’s card Yiri and I made:

2015newyear

Yes, it’s a direct tribute to this famous Calvin & Hobbes strip by Bill Watterson:

calvinhobbesdancing

What are we dancing about in the New Year? Well, for the pending publication of Religion: a Discovery in Comics, for starters. It will be out at NBM in Fall, and this is the cover:

religion_cover