The trip started with several events at TCAF, The Toronto Comic Arts Festival. The library venue was busy with people and buzzing with energy!
As well as doing several signings at the Papercutz/NBM table we took part in two panels and held a workshop for kids. First up was Comics and Collaboration with Nate Powell, John Ira Jennings, Molly Ostertag, Fanny Britt and moderator Erica Friedman. This panel proved popular with standing room only and the audience were keen, asking lots of questions. Jamie Coville recorded the event for a podcast so interested parties may listen here: http://www.torontocomics.com/2017/05/25/tcaf-in-pictures-and-podcasts/
|John Jennings, Molly Ostertag, Fanny Britt and us!|
|Thanks Papercutz for a wonderful dinner in Toronto! Clockwise from top of |
table: Terry Nantier, Larry Hancock, Sandrine Revel, Sandra and John,
Sven Larsen, Catherine Marjoribanks, Marc Askwith, Anima and Rick Geary
I Killed Adolf Hitler), Sandrine Revel (Glenn Gould), Gabrielle Bell (Everything is Flammable) Neil Slorance (Dungeon Fun) and Dave McKean (Black Dog: The Dreams of Paul Nash). We also caught up with comic luminaries Heidi MacDonald, Calvin Reid and Tom Spurgeon and publishers Chris Pitzer (AdHouse Books) and Chris Staros (Top Shelf).
|Sandra with Sandrine Revel and Jason|
|John talking to Dave McKean|
|With Sven Larsen from Papercutz and Gabrielle Bell|
We even popped in for a visit to say hello to the great folk at The Beguiling comic store in Toronto where we were delighted to see our graphic novels on the shelf beside Tintin!
Thanks to Greg Bennett and Joel Pollack for having us at their store! We first got to know them when they were involved with running SPX, another great comic show we have been to many times. And thanks Eden Miller for blogging about our visit! http://www.comicsgirl.com/2017/05/18/metaphrogs-north-american-tour/
On we went to Boston, for a signing at The Million Year Picnic, another legendary comic shop, situated right beside Harvard Square. A big thank you to Tony, Mike and Craig for hosting our signing!
Another plane journey and we were arriving in New York City amidst a sudden and unexpected heat wave.
The next day and a short subway ride away from Manhattan, Word Bookstore Jersey City was hosting our event.
We delivered a short presentation and signed and sketched The Little Mermaid for eager young readers. Thanks to Aubrey Nolan, Parish, Hannah and Lydia and all the lovely staff at Word!
Just 24 hour later we were setting up for an event at the fantastic Bank Street Bookstore in Manhattan. Our presentation and signing took place directly after the store's regular puppet show, a performance, where free jazz meets dada and experimental improvised theatre for kids, created by store manager Andy Laties and Rebecca Migdal. Andy played the garden hose and several other surreal musical instruments. It was also great to have dinner with both Andy and Rebecca afterwards. It gave us all a chance to relax and exchange cultural ideas.
We even got a view of the statue of liberty through the fog and rain from the school library window!
By the next morning the rain had subsided, and we felt rather sad to be leaving NYC, we love the city so much! But we were heading for another exciting adventure, this time to Florida.
Gainesville was the antithesis of NYC (in a good way), and there we stayed in a converted shipping container near a swampy pond and showered outdoors under a palm tree. It was wonderful to see our hosts and cartoonist friends Tom Hart (author of Eisner-nominated Rosalie Lightning, pictured here under the umbrella) and Leela Corman (Unterzakhn) after nearly 14 years, and to meet their wonderful daughter Molly Rose. Tom even took us see alligators in a nearby park on our way to airport!
We delivered an illustrated talk at Millhopper Library for the students of SAW, Tom and Leela's Sequential Artists Workshop, a school of cartooning. We had a great time and it was fantastic to talk comics with comic students. Huge thanks to Tom and Leela!
|With Tom Hart and some of the students of SAW|
And then, 16 days on, it was finally time to come home, and we wished we could have stayed longer, but also felt ready for the next round of events in the UK (take a look at our website for updates). Most importantly we feel inspired and excited about creative work and the prospect of getting on with making our next graphic novel.
We documented the trip on instagram and all photos can be view here: https://www.instagram.com/Metaphrog_Graphic_Novels/