Hey everyone, similar to last year’s promo contest I ran, I’m giving away the original art of the pull-out poster that appears in my new book!
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I’m excited (and a little nervous) to announce this awesome event next Tuesday October 6 in Brooklyn. I’m partnering with the magazine The Great Discontent and Wythe Hotel where I will be having a live interview, Q&A session and book signing. Tickets are FREE but you will need to RSVP.
The Great Discontent in Conversation with Zen Pencils’ Gavin Aung Than
Tuesday October 6
Wythe Hotel (Screening room and bar). 80 Wythe Ave, Brooklyn NY
There will be copies of the new book (and alcohol!) available for sale.
Register for your free ticket at this link.
Many of you were asking for a separate NY event besides my Comic-Con signings and this is even better than I could have imagined. I know it’s late notice but it’s all just come together in the last couple of days. If you’re around, please come and show your support. I’ve got to fill this room (GULP).
A huge thanks to The Great Discontent’s editor-in-chief Tina Essmaker for making this happen. TGD is a beautiful print and online magazine that interviews artists and makers. I highly recommend you check them out.
Hope to see some of you there!
PS: Here are the rest of my US book tour dates.
I was honoured to be a guest on Tall Tale Radio, a podcast featuring interviews with professional cartoonists. It’s hosted by Tom Racine, a lifelong comics fanboy who’s got the silky smooth voice of a radio veteran. In the interview I discuss the origins of Zen Pencils, my creative process, what tools I use and of course, my new book and upcoming US tour. Hope you like it!
I’m personally a big fan of the show and listen to it often while I’m drawing. I love hearing other cartoonist’s stories and shop talk. For starters, I recommend the episodes featuring Jason Chatfield (Ginger Meggs), Jan Eliot (Stone Soup) and Jerry Scott (Zits and Baby Blues). You can also subscribe on iTunes.
Hi folks, I missed the Reader of the Month instalment last month. Apologies, sometimes I lose track of things. I’ve been trying to get some work done before I head off on my big US book tour next week and am a bit frantic. For those of you who missed the announcement, I’ll be touring the US in October (dates and cities here) promoting my new book collection (which is available for pre-order). In the meantime, here’s a great story from a reader with the coolest name I’ve ever heard who’s been hustling as a professional musician his entire life.
My name is Roland De Aragon, I’m a 35 year old professional musician, educator, author and cartoonist from Los Angeles. I was introduced to music and art at an early age and just fell in love with both of them. Like most 80’s kids, Saturday morning cartoons was the thing back then. I watched Ninja Turtles, Voltron, Thundercats, He-Man, Scooby-Doo, Mickey Mouse, Looney Toons and my all time favorite, Tom and Jerry. I recall in the fifth grade having this language arts book. One of the stories had a sequenced image of a butterfly flapping its wings. I grabbed several pieces of paper and folded them in half and had a small flip book. I continued to draw every single image of the butterfly on each piece of paper. When I was done I flipped through the pages and I suddenly saw the butterfly flapping in front of my eyes. I began to wonder if this was how cartoons was created. That was the day I wanted to become a animator. ↓ Read the rest of this entry…
Great news to all the teachers out there who have been using Zen Pencils comics in the classroom. My publisher Andrews McMeel has partnered with non-profit Reading With Pictures to put together a free Teacher’s Guide companion for the Zen Pencils book.
The 6-page PDF has plenty of activities for teachers to spice up their classes with. These include discussion topics based around specific comics, brainstorming original ideas, breaking down what cartooning and storytelling techniques I’ve used and of course applying everything they learn to make their own comic. It’s aimed at high school students but there are some activities appropriate for all ages. The guide is for use with the Zen Pencils book, but I’m sure teacher’s can still make do if they use this website only.
Download the PDF from the official Zen Pencils page on Andrews McMeel. (scroll down)
A big thanks to Tracy Edmunds from Reading With Pictures for writing the guide. Tracy and I would love to hear feedback so keep me updated with how your students respond. It would be nice to help inspire the next Bill Watterson or Charles Schulz!
PS: Check out what Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of Eat, Pray, Love, wrote about one of my comics. She posted the Is That Not Worth Exploring? comic on her Facebook page and wrote a beautiful response to go with it.
Hey folks, here’s another beautiful Reader of the Month entry. Meet Katsumi. She shares a similar story to mine. If you’ve ever thought about breaking free from whatever situation you’re in to travel the world and rediscover yourself, then read on:
Hello! My name is Katsumi, I’m a 35 year-old Brazilian, although my parents are Japanese. I grew up in love with drawing, and was surrounded by comics my whole childhood and adolescence. But when it was time to “grow up” I studied Multimedia Design at college and left the drawing behind. I focused on learning more about design and programming, because I thought it would be more helpful to my career. I came from a strict Japanese tradition, so I was always studying and doing what I was told to be “successful”. ↓ Read the rest of this entry…
Hey gang, here’s another Reader of the Month story, all the way from sunny Singapore. This is one of the most powerful stories I’ve shared here, it’s of a young man who overcame a serious bout of depression and rediscovered his love for writing. ↓ Read the rest of this entry…
Hey gang, welcome to another Reader of the Month, where I feature some inspiring members of the Zen Pencils community. This month, there are two great reader stories for you. First up is Sarah:
Hi, my name’s Sarah and I live in Cambridge, UK. I always find Zen Pencils inspirational, however The Gift Of Life comic got straight to the heart of my matter and summed me up so completely. And it’s not only because the quote was from Nerdist founder Chris Hardwick and I am a proud geek. Currently I work full-time as a non-traditional librarian (more to do with the internet, social media and ebooks) for the University of Cambridge. I love literature, films, TV and music. I read voraciously and follow lots of TV shows. My favourite genre is fantasy and my favourite film is The Princess Bride, closely followed by Leon. I also write creatively; stories, poems and prose, whatever takes my fancy. ↓ Read the rest of this entry…