On the heels of an earlier report, publisher Eric Stephenson confirmed to OPB FM that Image Comics will move its staff to Portland, Oregon. Early next year, Image will relocate its 20+ staff members from Berkeley, CA to Portland, OR.
“The Bay Area has changed over the last 12 years,” Stephenson explained. “A lot of people focus on the expense. It’s not just that. The culture has changed a lot. It’s become more of a corporate place.”
In Portland, Image has located a new space that is not only larger, but also cheaper than their current office space in Berkeley. The new Image Comics headquarters will set up shop in Montgomery Park in northwest Portland.
“Since we have so many creators here, we’re going to be able to talk to them face-to-face instead of over the phone or email or at conventions,” Stephenson continued. “We’re going to keep doing what we’ve been doing, but hopefully better, thanks to our proximity to creative people.” He guessed that about 24 Image creators live around Portland; Matt Fraction, Kelly Sue DeConnick and Greg Rucka are just a few who reside in the area and have a history with the publisher.
Charles Brownstein, the executive director of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, also weighed in on Image's move, saying, “Image moving to Portland solidifies its place as one of the three major hubs for comics in the United States, with the other two being Los Angeles and New York... And I think it makes Portland even more of a beacon for people that want to participate within the comic’s industry.”
Image will join fellow comics publishers Dark Horse Comics and Oni Press in Portland in 2017.