Superheroes Strip Artists & Talking Animals
by : Britt Aamodt
Superman soared out of a Depression-era America desperate not for just a hero but a superhero to prevail against the crushing realities of life. But as comic book readers escape into a rich world of words and pictures, it's easy to forget the slumped-over figure at the drawing board--the cartoonist, who may live in Metropolis for much of the day but still calls Minnesota home. In Superheroes, Strip Artists & Talking Animals, Britt Aamodt coaxes twenty-three contemporary artists from Minnesota's burgeoning cartoonist community to talk about one of America's most colorful, irreverent, misunderstood, and sometimes demonized art forms. The cartoonists' work spans comics, graphic novels, comic strips, editorial cartoons, minicomics, and webcomics. In their careers, these artists have conspired in the death of Superman, envisioned an interstellar space cop network, devoted an entire strip to a dead chicken, and created a Third World dictatorship that felt awfully familiar to contemporary American readers. Along the way, the cartoonists share their stories of breaking into comics and the realities of an industry that has hit pay dirt in Hollywood with comics-based movies but is witnessing the migration of strip artists from paper- to web-based publications. Follow them in this fully illustrated book as they draw their future, frame by frame. Britt Aamodt is an arts journalist specializing in pop culture, visual arts, and artists. She founded the radio theater troupe Deadbeats On the Air and has adapted graphic novels for radio.