Storytelling comes easiest to me when I combine words and pictures.
Comics and cartoons have the power to make everyday situations entertaining, the most outlandish situations relatable, and the most serious topics easier to digest (e.g., death in Daytripper, the Holocaust in Maus, the Big C in Cancer Vixen, the Iranian revolution in Persepolis).
As for why I pursued this, credit goes to:
- Randy Glasbergen, who responded to fanmail that I wrote at age ten in response to his book. Not only did he write me back, but he responded with thoughtful, personalized advice on how to make it in the industry
- Pol Medina, whose summer cartooning workshop with Tonton Young I attended. He gave me copy of Pugad Baboy IX inscribed with the message, “To Joanne — I hope to see your work in the papers alongside mine one day!”
Having your dreams taken seriously at a young age is a gift.
Speaking of advice for young artists, here’s a primer from Loldwell.com: