grown up purchase

We have 5 custom ink drawing spots left – grab one before they’re gone!

Have a happy weekend ^_^

hypochondriac romance (+ ink drawings)

I’m releasing 10 custom ink drawings for Valentine’s day! You can snag one here.

shampoo

shampoo

pashmina cover

pashminacover

I’m super excited to share the cover of my debut graphic novel, Pashmina, with you! It was shared with a host of other great covers on Entertainment Weekly.

Have a great weekend!

cat fame

famouscat1

I’m excited to share that I will be teaching comics at the CCA next year. If you’re interested in the CCA’s comics program, you can come to my presentation/information session tomorrow – I will be speaking about my path to art and comics and staff will be on hand to answer questions about their program.

Hope to see you there.

first family vacation

banyantree

babylifevacation

seaturtle shaveice goodbyehawaii

we went on our first family vacation. it was equal parts rough and relaxing. traveling with baby was fine, but being hotel bound while baby napped with beautiful hawaii right outside the door was hard! i made the best of nap time by drawing (in the dark!) and even though we didn’t spend enough time in the pool or the ocean, it was hard to leave!

first second celebrates 10 years

firstsecondbooks

My publisher, First Second, is celebrating 10 years of making books. I first encountered them as an attendee at San Diego Comic-Con in 2009. I remember finding Gene Luen Yang’s American Born Chinese, and how deeply it impacted me. It shifted my ideas of what comics could be. I’ve picked up a few of First Second’s books every year since, as a fellow exhibitor in San Diego.

I created this comic to illustrate how I see myself in each of their titles – and it was hard to narrow it down! I didn’t get to include This One Summer, Three Shadows, Same Difference, Battling Boy, Sailor Twain, Sumo, The Undertaking of Lily Chen…agh! I love them all!

As I wrote my forthcoming graphic novel, Pashmina, I had First Second on my mind. Their titles are diverse and literary. When my agent asked me about pitching, I told her that if First Second bought my book, I would be ecstatic… and I still am!
Thank you and congrats, First Second, for 10 years of publishing wonderful books. I am so happy to be part of your family of authors!
#10yearsof01

hourly comics 2016

I participated for the first time in hourly comics yesterday. It’s an annual event where anyone can share a comic snapshot of their life. The goal is to draw a comic every hour! It was fun and challenging. I started the day off taking care of our daughter so that Nick could take a phone interview and ended in San Francisco with artists friends in our sketch group. I posted them “live” as I went along on social media and this morning I scanned them all to share with you!

Have a lovely Tuesday!

hourly1hourly2

day in, day out

dayindayout This year my art goal is more comics! In between nap time, bath time, play time, cooking and working on PashminaI’ve been drawing some comics in my sketch book. ^_^

what’s in a page?

pg1a I am working diligently on Pashmina. As I completethe final art, I feel challenged and discover new ways to communicate the story through art andwords. Even at this stage of final art I continue to learn and edit. The evolution of a graphic novel is excruciating but also wonderful. I cannot believe how far I’ve come in what seems like a short time – although I’ve been working on this book for 3 years now. The above page was in thepitch to publishers. Originally page 1 wasan establishing shot of Priyanka’s home. pg1b After a few manuscript revisions, page 1 was her school for a brief moment, until I settled on a driving scene. I trieda “soft opening” which includeda series of shots of Priyanka enjoying driving – hand out the car window, wind in her hair, listening to music. I wanted to contrast her feelings of freedomwith her worried mother and end it with her mom yelling, “PRIYANKA”. pg1c After one of many long conversations with my editor he made the comment that it’s better to start with action. I thought about that and shifted the panels. I began with her mom yelling and it felt right. Instead of an establishing shot, a soft flowing opening, we dive into STORY and their relationship. My editor suggested that I think about how my characters hands can look more natural, and to act out what my characters are doing. For months during the thumbnail process I would walk around our apartment saying lines and acting. Nick would giggle at me as I repeated some lines over and over trying to put myself mentally in the moment. While working on the story and revisionsI was thinking about Pashmina so much that it felt like Priyanka and her family wereliving with us. And in many ways, they still are. pg1d Finally I settled on the right hand placement and after thumbnailing the entire book for roughly a year (which included many revisions small and large) I started on final art earlier this year. As I looked back on the pitches, I thought, “Wow! So much goes into just one page!” I’ve always wanted to make a graphic novel but I never realized the amount of work it takes to visually communicate a long form story. From panelling, character design and acting to story development, line work and shading (and color!) it exercisesevery creative muscle – and I love it more and more every day!

pg1final