Click here to view her CV.
Companies: Adidas, Allstate, Amazon, America’s Got Talent, Bitch Media, Brooks, Disney, Dove, Frederator Studios, GE, Kohler, Nike, Nintendo, Portland Mercury, Reebok, Upstream Public Health
Publishers: Archaia, BOOM! Studios, Dark Horse, Image Comics, Lerner Books, Marvel Comics, Monkeybrain Comics, Oni Press, Penguin Books
Agencies: Bunker, Conic Group, Eyeball on the Floor, The Great Society, happylucky, Kamp Grizzly, Magic+Might, Vayner Media, Wieden+Kennedy
Can I hire you?
Not at this time. I am fully occupied working at Walt Disney Animation Studios and illustrating comic projects for Le Lombard and Oni Press.
Do you have any advice / tips / tutorials?
Yes! Check out this blog post for ALL of my advice and tips, plus links to some tutorials.
Can you suggest any comic titles that are appropriate for young readers?
Yes! Comics make excellent reading material for people of all ages. For parents of young readers, it can be a little worrying to see how much adult content is out there, but there are lots of great all-ages and teen titles to check out:
All Ages Comic Recommendations:
Amulet by Kazu Kibuishi
Bone by Jeff Smith
Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson
Card Captor Sakura and Angelic Layer by CLAMP
Dragon Puncher by James Kochalka
Owly by Andy Runton
Mouse Guard by David Petersen
Saint Tail by Megumi Tachikawa
Smile and Sisters by Raina Telgemeier
Teen Comic Recommendations:
Adventure Time by Ryan North & Braden Lamb
American Born Chinese, Level Up, and Boxers by Gene Luen Yang
Anya’s Ghost by Vera Brosgol
Astronaut Academy by Dave Roman
Atomic Robo by Brian Clevinger & Scott Wegender
Azumanga Daioh and Yotsuba by Kiyohiko Azuma
Courtney Crumrin and Polly & the Pirates by Ted Naifeh
Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
Drama by Raina Telgemeier
Foiled by Jane Yolen and Michael Cavallaro
Friends with Boys and The War at Ellsmere by Faith Erin Hicks
Koko Be Good by Jen Wang
Lost at Sea and Scott Pilgrim by Bryan Lee O’Malley
Lumberjanes by Grace Ellis, Shannon Watters, & Noelle Stevenson
Mercury, Gray Horses, and A Wrinkle in Time by Hope Larson
Primates by Jim Ottaviani & Maris Wicks
Relish by Lucy Knisley
Same Difference by Derek Kirk Kim
Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane by Sean McKeever and various artists
Super Pro K.O. by Jarrett Williams
Teen Titans Go! by J Torres
Ultimate Spider-Man by Brian Michael Bendis & Mark Bagley
Usagi Yojimbo by Stan Sakai
Zita the Spacegirl by Ben Hatke
Where can I buy prints of your work?
Cadence now carries my prints!
What do you use to draw digitally?
I mostly use the software Photoshop CC and Manga Studio 5.
At home, I work on a Wacom Cintiq “Companion 2″ (a hybrid processor/tablet) running Windows. At work, I use a Macbook and a 24″ Cintiq.
What pens/tools do you use to draw with?
In my sketchbook, I tend to use a Platinum Carbon Pen for my line art, a Pentel Pocket Brush Pen for spot blacks, a Pentel Aquash Waterbrush Pen for gray washes (I fill the cartridge with water and add about 10 drops of black India ink), and a generic white gel pen for corrections and highlights. Sometimes I mix it up and draw with a Kuretake disposable pocket brush pen. Sometimes I draw with pencil, but often I draw directly with ink (it makes me commit to my lines and draw more confidently and quickly).
Since 2013, I draw my comic pages and storyboards completely digitally. I “pencil,” “ink,” and “letter” in the program Manga Studio 5 using a Wacom Cintiq “Companion 2″. I highly recommend purchasing the Frenden brush pack for Manga Studio; it makes it a LOT easier to draw natural-looking lines. I pencil everything with the “layout blue” pen and I ink with a modification of the “inker brush”. I color my pages in Photoshop CS 4.
I feel like I’ve seen your work before somewhere…
How do you do those life drawings of people on the street?
I started doing this in 2012 to improve my “everyday” characters, like the people who populate the backgrounds of my comics. I took my sketchbook and a couple of pens (no pencils!) to any cafe around town with a seat looking out on a street with good foot traffic, and drew the people that I saw walking past. Like anything else, practice makes it easier and easier to take a quick mental impression of a person’s defining characteristics and body language, and then transfer those to a drawing.
People don’t tend to stand still, but it’s good practice to try drawing a “moving target”! I watch people while I can see them, and begin my drawing as soon as they’re out of sight. I make up what I can’t remember. I go quickly and focus on the overall impression of the person–trying to get across their mood or motion more than a photo-realistic impression of them. The more I do this, the better I’ve gotten at knowing what to look for and remember in those brief seconds I’m able to see the person. I focus on the person’s posture, proportions, and where their eyes are looking. Hopefully, I remember a couple of things about what they’re wearing, too.
If you’re in Portland and want to try this exercise, I recommend the cafe in Powell’s overlooking the intersection of Burnside and NW11th. That’s the best life drawing spot I’ve ever found. The bar-style seating is great for drawing, people in the cafe are absorbed in their books and unlikely to bother you, the foot traffic outside is a diverse cross-section of Portlanders, and pedestrians tend to pause at that intersection before crossing the road, so they might even stand still for half a minute!
Once in a while someone on the street or in the cafe sees what I’m doing, but in several years I’ve only had one or two people ask to see my sketches, and they’ve always grinned and been supportive. Of course you need to be respectful, and try not to creep people out. An art teacher once told me that if someone makes eye contact with you 3 times while you’re drawing them, you should stop. I’m a little more anxious, so I stop after just one instance!
Will you attend a convention in my city? / Will you attend an event at my shop? / Will you speak to my class?
If there’s a convention you’d like to see me at, I’d be thrilled if you contacted them and asked them to invite me as a guest! For other events, please send me an e-mail with details about what you have in mind. It’s not always possible for me to afford trips or to take time off of work, but I do enjoy traveling, meeting people, and talking comics/art when I can!
What is the best way to contact you?
I am receiving exponentially more mail and messages every year. As much as I would like to, it is no longer possible to reply to everything. Please know that I read and appreciate all messages, but unless yours relates to work I am doing or want to do, I may not be able to write you back.