That was you...

Oh my dear readers, you know what's nice? Taking a little vay-cay after a long and busy year. That's what I've been doing for the past few days. I've been staying at my parents house and doing a whole lot of NOTHING.

Bike rides, movies, tree fell in our yard, catching up with family and friends and of course, eating delicious family food.

In the world of comics though, I'm officially signed up to teach an awesome class at my mom's middle school this summer

Right before co-teaching an awesome workshop at The Center for Cartoon Studies all about Production and Design.

In my comic news, still plugging away at FUGUE 3... also I changed the cover again... ha! Fooled all of you! Here's the REAL cover...

screen printed and everything:

See y'all soon with some more updates!


I feel alright

Happy Wednesday my faithful dear readers! I've been running around a little bit like a chicken with her head cut off, but now it's that wonderful time of year, where the sun is high and the winds are cool and the COMICS are COOKING!

Last week, Kyle and I performed at Brain Frame 6 which was so stellar, what a great turn out and what a great bunch of performers. It was video taped, so once that's up, I'll be able to share it with you my friends, but for now, here are some images from our rehearsal and prep:

Immediately after we finished our fun evening pretending to be our characters, we rushed home to go to sleep because the greatest minds in comics were giving a weekend of glory at the U of C in Hyde Park. Waking up super early to avoid the NATO traffic and make it to the south side wasn't very fun, but BOY was it worth it! I got to hear some of my comic idols like Lynda Barry, Ivan Brunetti, Charles Burns, Dan Clowes, Chris Ware, Carol Tyler, R. Crumb, Francoise Mouly, Art Spiegelman, Justin Green, and Joe Sacco JUST to name a few! Here are some photo highlights from such an amazing weekend:

Conversations with Joe Sacco. "Repeated Imagery is the power of comics" - Joe Sacco.

AutoBio panel with Aline Crumb, Carol Tyler, Phoebe Gloeckner, and Justin Green. "We are all master bullshitters" - Justin Green.

AWESOME panel with Charles Burns, Dan Clowes, Seth and Chris Ware. "It's about empathizing with other people, which is what I think all art tries to do" - Chris Ware.

Francoise Mouly, Dan Clowes, R. Crumb and Chris Ware. "...and it's like... you might as well cut your dick off" - R. Crumb

And although I agree with this awesome quote from Aline Crumb, "I think it's a curse to talk about my new work," I recognize that for me, it's helpful to keep the world in the know so I feel like I'm held accountable by you friends!! So I have been working on FUGUE part 3, slowly but surely. I've still be trudging through thumbnails (which is the hardest part for me), but in the meantime, I got my new paper and I hope to cut it down and screen print a BUTTLOAD today and tomorrow in prep for when I don't have access to the Screen Print studio this summer. Here's some of what I've been thinking about for the cover. Now back when I was turning in my Thesis a year ago, I didn't know what I wanted book 3 to say, so I didn't know what to put on the cover. I came up with this cover to illustrate the color sequence of three as well as hint at what the characters were doing closer to their adult lives...

But I didn't like it for a lot of reasons, the main one being it made Rachel look like a big, old sad-sack. Which is NOT true. Also, it's very casual lounging poses... I don't know, felt boring. It mirrored the cover of book two which was groovy, but not substantial enough for me to be sold on its design.

Now this is what I'm going for is although the story has shifted points of view and main characters, in the final book the reader will spend more time with me as I explore my other family member's lives. It was time I put myself on the cover in a main way. What's important about the ideas behind book three is that it's a retelling-revoicing-recapitulation of the first book, so its cover is similar to the one on the first book.

However, unlike the first one, I wanted the steps that Beth was taking to feel confident and sure footed. She's also looking up and not a big old sad-sack like the note we're left feeling when opening the cover to the previous version, PLUS I think you need a smiley face after what happened at the end of book two.

Later on in the developing process, I hope I can share more of how this is coming together, but for now it's just sketches and ideas thrown here and there.

Last but not least, dear reader, I got to welcome a new member top my family. She still doesn't have a name solidified yet, but soon. (Ideas welcome!!) It's my first bike as an adult!

I think I'm in love :)

See ya next week, followers!


Don't stop

Ladies and Germs!! In case you didn't notice, it's THURSDAY. Which is an entirely different day than what we are used to for this blog to have a shiny new post. What can I say? Life has been hectic, and I'm about to tell you why!

First up is I just landed from a wonderful time down memory lane, or as I like to call it, White River Junction. My boi Dakota earned his Master's degree and I couldn't very well MISS that! Here's some photos from the weekend, but to check out the full set, head over to my flickr.

Dakota gave a GREAT speech as class speaker, but don't worry Derks, it wasn't anything like yours.

Tom De Haven was the commencement speaker


A little 2011 re-toon-ion

Congrats friends!

After returning from WRJ, Kyle and I have been in full swing production mode for our VERY SPECIAL Brain Frame event TOMORROW NIGHT at 8pm at the Gallery Formally Known as Happy Dog. I hope you can make it, because boy-howdy, it's going to be amazing. Here's a little tease of what we're cooking.

What in the---? You'll just have to come and see!

And of course, there has been some positive progress on FUGUE part 3...

Ideally I'll have something for CAKE, but boy howdy am I gonna have to hustle!

Tune in next time, for updates from the most amazing Comics Conference this side of the Mississippi and hopefully some autographs or photos of my idols!


Just the way you look tonight

Well friends, I've now officially traveled to another country and back and oh man am I the better for it! TCAF was an amazing show and I highly recommend it for anyone who likes to read comics or make comics. It was a great show for both. Here are some highlights from my trip with two Joshes! But before then, check out this awesome interview with the National Post in Toronto I did. Click Here to read.

Beautiful Toronto from the Island airport I flew into!

Josh Kramer and I at our blurry but beautiful table.

Our tablemates to the right including but not limited to: Joe Lambert, Alex Kim, Melissa Mendes, Chuck Forsman, Sean Ford, Secret Acres and Caitlin McGurk (not tabling but being awesome) and a sprinkle of Becca Lambert.

Our table mates to the left: Julie Delporte, Jon Chad, Josh Rosen and Chris I'm-sorry-I-forgot-your-last-name!

Always good to compare notes!

Awesome venue at the Toronto Reference Library!

Jon Chad teaching kids at his Fizzmont Institute talk.

I love this image of my two Joshes. This weekend was seriously the best. Not just because of these fellas, but because THIS happened!!

UN. REAL. Thank you Toronto, you can bet I'll be back!!!

In local news, today Kyle and I gave away about 150 books to the SAIC community at the brand new Neiman Center and here's a few photos from that. Remember, if you're the proud owner of a new book, post a picture and tag me (@bethhetland) or email it to me, and YOU will be on the blog!!

Our table set up

New friends excited about books!

Open-mouth smiles are what we are good at.

And don't forget, you can still order a copy of Cycles for only $10.00 at the STORE order today friends. You won't regret it! And mark your calendars for May 18th (NEXT FRIDAY) for the special Brain Frame 6 event where Kyle and I will be doing a performance promoting our book. 8pm, at 1452 N. Milwaukee at the Gallery Formally Known as Happy Dog. I would love to see you there! We've made a very special mini for the occasion that you can ONLY get there! (For free, of course)

Next week, I'll have reports from the CCS graduating class of 2012, till then friends, take care :)


Stumptown Recap

What a whirl-wind friends! First and foremost, THANK YOU to everyone who voted for me in the Stumptown Comic Arts Awards because... well friends... I WON!

And Nomi Kane, Caitlin McGurk and Jen Vaughn also won for Best Anthology. Thank you, thank you so much everyone!

And I'll have these puppies this weekend at TCAF! Come find me in the CCS row on the first floor! I'd love to meet some Canadian readers.

Here's some highlights from my two-part trip to Portland and then Seattle with my boys:

Our table with some fellas

Emily bringing us VooDoo Donuts!

Taking naps on cement floors

Making sketches

Beautiful Seattle!

Spending excellent time with these chumps

And of course, LOTS of pinball!!!

If you want to see more Seattle/Portland pictures, check out the flickr site.

Meanwhile, copies of Cycles are starting to arrive at doorsteps everywhere! Be sure to pick up your copy today at THE STORE.

Arriving at Admissions at SAIC (photo by Caitlin Schriner)

Arriving at Sheboygan (photo by Travis Whitcomb)
If you snag one up, take a photo with yourself or just of your copy, link (@bethhetland) or email me and I'll put you on the blog!! It's like a fun game!

And speaking of fun games, May 9th at 4pm Kyle and I will be unleashing 300 copies of Cycles for FREE at the Neiman Center at SAIC to SAIC students. So if you're from the SAIC community stop on by and grab a free 142 page beauty! We'll even sign it for you.

While you're marking your calendar, I hope you have May 18th at 8pm already marked, because coming up soon we'll be revealing more and more about our special performance at Brain Frame, but until then, enjoy another picture sneak peek of what's to come:

Until next time friends! Look forward to next weeks update about my first time OUT OF THE COUNTRY!!!!