“Chicago shaped me a lot as a cartoonist,” says April banner artist Keith Taylor. “I spent time working in music bars, and my cartooning really blossomed there.” Chicago Publishes met with Taylor to talk pencils, prairies, and wig-wearing doormen.
“There is something tricky about navigating how much of nothing one can get away with and still be noticed,” says March’s banner artist Tim Schade. Check out Chicago Publishes’ interview, in which Tim reades Tina Fey, paints balloons, and does not play music.
“I feel like for little-kid-me, this would be the equivalent of living in a water park,” says Chicago-based illustrator Laura Park. “I get to draw all day! It was something I always loved doing. Sometimes you have to give yourself the freedom of just enjoying what you do.”
“The city itself doesn’t affect my art so much as the people in the city. Moving here for grad school at SAIC, I started meeting other cartoonists, like Lilli Carré, Grant Reynolds and Laura Park. Seeing their work and knowing them made me push my work further…. There’s a lot of trying to outdo each other, surprise each other, impress each other, or just gross everyone out,” says December banner artist, Chicago cartoonist Jeremy Tinder.
“Reading is so visual and the best writers can say more about a place or a person than any painting I’ve ever encountered,” says November featured artist Julia Carusillo. “I love bringing reading and writing into my work because without meaningful content there is no point. Having studied advertising in college, I also became very aware of how text and image work together and enhance one another.”
“When I draw Metropolis or Gotham City it’s definitely Chicago underneath,” says well-known comic artist Gene Ha. His work is featured in our banner this month, and he sat down with us to chat about Chicago as inspiration, working for DC, and his sources of inspiration.
“As for the comics community, I think it’s really impressive. There are a ton of talented cartoonists working in Chicago,” says Paul Hornschemeier, local comic and graphic novel artist. This month’s banner is taken from his novel Life with Mr. Dangerous. He chatted with us about Chicago, his work, and what’s next for him.
“Some people have a preconceived notion about what comics are or can be and I’m always eager to show them how eclectic this medium can be!” says Jill Thompson, award-winning Chicago comic artist and author of Scary Godmother, Beasts of Burden, and illustrator of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman. We’ve featured Scary Godmother in our banner this month, and interviewed Jill on her work.
“The flag book structure provides a great canvas to layer text and image, and a lot of opportunity for viewer involvement. They’re also fun to play with,” says Chicago binder, book and installation artist Karen Hanmer whose flag book “Bluestem” is featured in our banner this month. She talked with us about flag books, economics, and Audubon.
“I’m drawn toward the way that simple text and image can create a more complex and somewhat ambiguous narrative,” says Joseph Lappie, this month’s featured banner artist and graduate of Columbia College Chicago’s Interdisciplinary Book and Paper Arts MFA program. He spoke with us about his work, Peptic Robot Press, and letterpress narrative.