Friday's Preview Pages

I don't have much of a column for you this week, because of a whole bunch of life stuff I won't bore you with.

What I DO have in lieu of a full column, though, is something I think you will enjoy a great deal.

The Cartooning Class alumni book goes to press in just a few days, and what I have for you today are some amazing sample pages from that book.

Here's the cover art --

It's actually a jam cover. Katrina did the stage and the girl in the front doing the introductions, and then the characters on the stage itself are each done by a different artist -- from left to right it's Brianna's, Aja's, Amanda's and finally Rachel's. This is preliminary -- Katrina might move around the characters on the stage a bit and it's still got to be colored, but you can get a sense of it. The theme, naturally, is "Getting the band back together." We persuaded CBR's own Brandon Hanvey to design a nice logo for us and we'll drop that in after the rest of it's done.

Here's a couple of pages of Brianna's story.

A traumatic critique:

Yeah, that's me, back when I was younger and thinner. When we were kicking around possible titles for this book, Katrina suggested "Revenge of the Graduates." I think she was only half-kidding.

And with her classmates:

What tickles me about this one is that I recognized her classmates from Cartooning just on the drawing, even though she never names them in the story. (From left to right it's Christopher, Nadine, Brianna herself, David, and Anya. Here's a photo of Nadine today; look and you'll see what I mean, Bri really nailed it.)

Speaking of David, here's David's first two pages. The premise of this story really cracks me up.

The rest of it's awesome too. I hope he does more of these.

Here's a couple of Amanda's.

You'd never know it to talk to her, she's very soft-spoken in real life, but Amanda has a really antic sense of humor, as you can see from the above.

This may be my favorite page of all of them I've seen so far. This is Katrina's, about her coming back to work in Cartooning as my aide. Just pencils, but you certainly can tell what it's like for her in class.

The student she's helping is Eileen, by the way, who was thrilled to have a cameo appearance. I have to add that Katrina has really come into her own this year; last year, she was just my helper monkey, but this year she is truly my aide, she does as much teaching as I do.

The book should be going to press in a week or ten days, and my hope is to have it available online for mail-order soon after that. We're looking at a 64-page book for about five dollars, with all proceeds to benefit the afterschool arts program. Everyone is donating their time and their work so ALL the money goes to support the program. It's a really good cause and I think you can see that these kids learned something. I'm so proud of all our contributors I could pop.

Seriously, this is shaping up to be a truly amazing book. So I don't really mind giving up my column space this week to let the kids shine.

See you next week.

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