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Archives - February 2011

February 25, 2011

Behind the Scenes with Bonnie Barber

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This summer, on July 14, the public library in Carrollton, Texas, will host an innovative 39 Clues-themed tween event. They’ll also incorporate the audience’s love for graphic novels and manga into the daylong event, which is being coordinated by youth services librarian Bonnie Barber. We talked to Bonnie about her love of comics. (For more information on the upcoming event, check the library’s website here.)
“I don’t buy a lot of stuff online. I like to touch things first so I can get a physical connection,” says Darren Romanelli, aka Dr. Romanelli, a custom marketing specialist and owner of several brands in L.A. Romanelli recently partnered with comics legend Mort Walker to promote a new wave of properties for the iconic Beetle Bailey comic strip, bringing it to new life for both a younger generation and an older one who grew up reading the strip daily in newspapers. “For me, I’m totally aware it’s the digital era and that’s why we did a microsite for our Beetle Bailey projects, but I want to bridge the gap between the digital and the physical. That’s something we paid a lot of attention to with this. There was just as much of a physical aspect integrated into this project as a digital one.”
February 5, 2011

Behind the Scenes with Michael Gianfrancesco

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The New England Comic Arts in the Classroom conference is coming up on Saturday, March 26. This day of education for K-12 teachers and preservice teachers will feature keynote speakers, and several smaller workshops that will enable teachers to better incorporate comics, graphic novels, and manga into their educational programs. High-school teacher Michael Gianfrancesco, one of the codirectors of the conference, took some time to answer our questions.
Congratulations to creator James Kochalka (Dragon Puncher, Johnny Boo) for being named Vermont's first cartoonist laureate! The honor, which will be bestowed upon Kochalka in a daylong event being held on March 10, recognized the artist's work in the state of Vermont as well as his commitment to spreading education and literacy through his work.
I was intrigued to see the news from Top Shelf today that Georgia Congressman John Lewis is signed with the publisher to coauthor a graphic novel called March, based on the Civil Rights Movement in America. The book, which will be published next year, is being called "A meditation in the modern age on the distance traveled, both as a nation and as a people, since the days of Jim Crow and segregation" and is also more of a memoir, in that it tells Lewis's own personal story and struggle.