Welcome to August! Here’s the Cartoonist Cooperative’s roundup of what’s new and exciting for comics.
Amanda J. Ellis’s Taylor’s Egg releases on August 4th on her Ko-fi!
co-live, co-laugh, co-love 4 diyhrt.cafe aka clx3 4 diyhrtcafe is a collectively published comic zine produced by a group of queer and trans artist across North America for digital distribution, with proceeds going to DIYHRT.cafe.
Sunmi’s Firebird is now available! Sunmi’s gorgeous two-color teen graphic novel debut examines the power of resilience and reinvention, following the lives of Caroline and Kim, two queer, Asian American teenagers growing up in the suburbs of the San Francisco Bay Area, as they forge an unexpected connection.
Tales of the Frog Knight is a low-fantasy medieval adventure series that follows the exploits of the Frog Knight, a diminutive, silent, and perpetually depressed champion of justice and honor. Crowdfunding here!
DEATH IN THE MOUTH: Original Horror from the Margins Volume 2 is an illustrated horror anthology showcasing BIPOC and other ethnically marginalized writers and artists from around the world. Crowdfunding here!
“Change” is the latest anthology from WIP Comics – an award-nominated group of comic creators based in London. The book features around 50 short stories from a diverse mix of new and established creators, resulting in over 170 pages of stunning original comics. Crowdfunding here!
New at the Co-op Journal: Comics’ Own Martyr: Héctor Oesterheld’s Life and Death
Written by CJ Standal
Vanished from the Face of the Earth
In 1977 Héctor Germán Oesterheld—Argentinian writer, famed creator of The Eternaut, and member of the Montoneros guerrilla group—disappeared.
His family never saw him again. His readers never enjoyed another fantastic adventure. His political work was left unfinished.
Actually, it would be more accurate to say Oesterheld was disappeared. An outspoken critic and soldier in the war against the military junta ruling Argentina at the time, he paid the price for his political views and actions: he was kidnapped in 1977 and last seen in 1978, believed to be executed in secret by the junta.
For most of Oesterheld’s entire life he had fought for his leftist political beliefs. He warmed up his voice by articulating his leftist ideals and his criticism of the anti-Perón government in his adventure and science fiction comics, but he eventually shouted full force, making comics about actual political figures like Che Guevara. This rise in his political activism paralleled his own radicalization, most notably seen in his role as a member of the Montoneros, a leftist guerrilla group that opposed the military junta in Argentina in the 1960s and 1970s. This role, along with his work in comics, led to his capture and execution, to the government silencing his voice permanently.
In The World Encyclopedia of Comics, comics historian Maurice Horn wrote that “the medium of comics has had its geniuses and its mountebanks, its noblemen and its toadies, occasionally its heroes. But very rarely has it had its martyrs, which makes Hector Oesterheld perhaps unique in the field.”
Oesterheld was a true revolutionary, a true martyr, something—as Horn noted—that makes him a unique figure in the history of the medium and the history of the world itself. Throughout the history of the medium, comics creators have occasionally used their stories for political purposes, but few creators have actually fought for their beliefs. Even fewer have died for them.
The junta was successful in preventing Oesterheld from further activism during his lifetime, true. But in making him a martyr, they ended up boosting his voice even more. They gave his message another life, making it something that would forever be documented in the history books of Argentina and comics. Even in death, Oesterheld couldn’t help being political.
- Babs New is hosting Figure Drawing Club Summer School, a series of virtual figure drawing sessions, throughout the summer.
- Oceanside Zine Fair is open for applications until August 18th. The event will be held from September 23rd–24th
- iCON 2023 is open for applications until August 5th. The event will be held on November 18th.
Featured Opportunity and Resource
To receive additional opportunities and resources every month, we invite you to become a member of the Co-op!
- Silver Sprocket is open for minicomic submissions until August 31st.
- Nate Piekos’s Blambot is a fantastic resource for free and affordable comic fonts and lessons in comic lettering.
Congrats to the finalists of The Dream Foundry 2023 Contest, Galtenoble and ReYtzin!