The official site for the 10 Years to Save the World comic art anthology project has just launched, as part of the Earth Day 2021 celebrations, featuring art by a great range of comic creators, including British artists Sayra Begum, Darren Cullen, Jack Teagle. Clarice Tudor and Zoom Rockman.
Employing the tagline “Ten years. Ten comic art creations. One world”, 10 Years to Save the World is a comic art anthology, a collection of ten comics, of various lengths and forms, to represent each of the ten years left to save the world and to enable us to tackle different issues and different climate actions created in response to the climate crisis.
The project is supported by the British Council, who also launch their microsite for the Time for Action programme today, as part of a number of creative commissions in response to climate change and COP26, and it’s hoped the creation of a digital comic anthology will demonstrate how the comics medium can help stimulate climate change action.
Ten internationally-recognised comic and graphic artists have been commissioned to create the comics – five from the Philippines and five from the UK, representing the diversity and quality of the medium. They include comics provocateur Darren Cullen, Instagram comics star Clarice Tudor, award-winning comics writer Budjette Tan, and Private Eye cartoonist Zoom Rockman.
The project, which received project advice from the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research at the University of Manchester, is being simultaneously launched in the Philippines and the UK as part of the build-up to COP26. It’s a partnership between The Lakes International Comic Art Festival, based in the UK (presented by Lakes Arts Festivals), and the Philippine International Comics Festival (presented by Komiket), based in the Philippines, and Creative Concern, a Manchester-based communications agency specialising in sustainability.
• Check out the Ten Years to Save the World web site here | Connect with the project on Twitter and Instagram #10YearsToSaveTheWorld #TheClimateConnection #COP26 | (COP26 and the British Council are also using the hashtag –#TogetherForOurPlanet)
Ten Years to Save the World is supported by the British Council
• The Lakes International Comic Art Festival – back 15th to 17th October 2021 – is online at: www.comicartfestival.com | Lakes International Comic Art Festival Podcast: www.comicartpodcast.uk | Twitter: @comicartfestpod| Facebook: @ComicArtPodcast | Instagram: @ComicArtPodcast
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10 Years to Save the World – Creators
A freelance cartoonist, and the creator of Kikomachine Komix, his long-running daily strip in the Philippine Daily Inquirer, and “News Hardcore!” a weekly webcomic for GMA News Online, Manuel Luis “Manix” Abrera graduated with a degree in Fine Arts from the University of the Philippines Diliman.
Manix considers himself an incessant child of the universe, always in pursuit of stories and mysteries which he immortalises through his art. He’s published two wordless graphic novels, 12 and 14, and is a three-time National Book Awardee.
Manix’s art and discipline is strongly influenced by his award-winning editorial cartoonist father, Jess Abrera, and his love and talent for storytelling from his mother, Prof. Bernadette Abrera, a historian and the current Dean of the UP College of Social Sciences and Philosophy.
Budjette Tan grew up in a haunted house and was told to go to sleep early because there were aswang flying outside their bedroom window.
It’s not surprising that these stories would later inspire him to write TRESE. He is also the writer and co-creator of the award-winning comic book The Dark Colony Book 1: Mikey Recio and the Secret of the Demon Dungeon.
He currently works in the LEGO Agency in Denmark as one of the creative leads for the toy company’s global communication campaigns.
Kajo Baldisimo is a fan and avid reader of Filipino komiks from the 1980s and 90s.
He is a storyboard artist by day and comic book creator by night working on TRESE and his self-published bi-weekly zine called WKWKMDNK. After living in Manila for forty years, he is now permanently residing in Davao City, south of the Philippines, where he, together with his wife and son, are beginning to establish an animal shelter.
Sayra Begum released her first graphic novel, Mongrel, in August 2020, published by Knockabout Comics, and supported by Arts Council England. A graduate of Falmouth University, completing her Masters in Illustration: Authorial Practice in 2016m,
Sayra is currently training with the institute to become a lecturer, studying for a PGCHE, whilst tutoring on the MA Illustration course, and is also working on her next graphic novel.
Begum’s style is influenced by Islamic miniatures and Surrealism, her primary tools are her mechanical pencils. Her acclaimed first graphic novel, Mongrel, tells the story of a British Muslim woman who grew up in-between two cultures. She challenges conventions and looks beneath the surface to celebrate differences and reveal the common humanity.
Darren Cullen is a satirical artist, illustrator and writer, born in Leeds to Irish parents and currently based in London.
Cullen initially thought he would go into advertising as a career, studying it at Leeds College of Art where he learned the language and techniques of the medium, but became steadily horrified at the ethical implications involved.
Claiming that “manipulating the desires and aspirations of the public, and especially children, using an arsenal of sophisticated and emotionally damaging psychological techniques is an appalling way to make a living and an even worse way to sustain an economy.”
Cullen abandoned advertising to study Fine Art at Glasgow School of Art, and now uses the language of advertising to make work about the empty promises of consumerism and the lies of military recruiters. Releasing his first comic, an anti-army recruitment booklet sarcastically called Join the Army, in 2013.
As well as Pocket Money Loans, Cullen also wrote a series of short films called Action Man: Battlefield Casualties to draw attention to the way the Ministry of Defence targets children as young as five with its official toy range, ‘HM Armed Forces’, which includes an RAF Drone Playset.
Cullen says he is, “especially interested in the point where the terrible requirements of our system collide with the innocence of childhood. Children’s play, like every other aspect of human life, has been colonised by capitalism, adapted as it is into a sort of childhood training camp for the hard-working consumers and soldiers of tomorrow.”
Emiliana Kampilan loves her family, loves her wife (T!), loves comics, hates fascists, loves her countrymen. She has authored Dead Balagtas Tomo1, edited the Ligaw Tingin lesbian anthology, and contributed short comics to various publications. She believes in comics as praxis, and is always interested in exploring paneling as a means for visualizing dialectical materialism.
Jerico Marte left the media and production scene in 2014 and took a chance on an art career. He entered the local comic scene in the Philippines in November 2014 with Tanod written by Gabriel Chee Kee, a fellow geek and member of a famous band in the country.
His artwork on Strange Natives: The Forgotten Memories of a Forgetful Old Woman, written by Paolo Herras, earned his first National Book Award nomination.
Jerico is fond of faeries, his favourite manga is Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, and his main influences are Hirohiko Araki, Gerry Alanguilan, Tony Diterlizzi, Arthur Rackham, Brian Froud, Brom, Alexander McQueen, John Galliano, Sergio Toppi, Jae Lee, Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Wes Anderson, among many others.
He is currently self-employed, lives a simple life on a farm with his parents, and has a love-hate relationship with the chickens.
Paolo Alessandro Herras is an independent filmmaker, advertising Creative Director and comic book author. His graphic novel, Strange Natives: The Forgotten Memories of a Forgetful Old Woman, illustrated by Jerico Marte, was nominated for the 2017 National Book Award, and he directed the film adaptation of his graphic novel Buhay Habangbuhay (“Life Afterlife”), for the 2016 CineFilipino Film Festival.
Paolo is the President and Co-Founder of KOMIKET, a non-profit organisation that aims to nurture the Filipino comics community, and the Festival Director of the Philippine International Comics Festival (PICOF) that aims to create global awareness and grow the readership for Filipino comics.
Kevin Eric Raymundo is an animation director and comic artist, who has worked on animated shows such as My Little Pony, Curious George, Tom & Jerry, Eliot Kid and George of the Jungle.
He is known for his hit webcomic, Tarantadong Kalbo (“Shamelessly-Foolish-Disrespectful Baldy”), which started as the daily life of a young couple, but became a biting mirror on stumbling government policies during the pandemic.
Through brightly coloured and well-controlled art, Raymundo‘s webcomics sharply showed the inequality of the rich and powerful, against the poor and working class, and the inconsistencies and lies that came with official statements, that were infuriating and comedic at the same time.
Zoom Rockman, who’s studying Graphic Design at Central Saint Martins, London, is a Political Cartoonist and Puppet Maker whose comic strip, “Skanky Pigeon”, first appeared in the Beano when he was 12 years old.
Age 16, he became the youngest cartoonist in Private Eye magazine history and has since become a regular contributor. He is also Editorial Cartoonist for The JC.
Described as “A rising star with edgy wit and genuine cultural awareness well beyond his years.” The Evening Standard named Zoom as one of the most influential Londoners under 25. His award-winning comic, The Zoom!, has attracted wide critical acclaim for its funny and irreverent critique of urban life and developed a cult following. London stockists now include Tate Modern and Somerset House.
Zoom’s art humours and heroes the everyday grime and energy of London and has become increasingly collectible. His first solo exhibition at The Hospital Club, Covent Garden was a sell-out event.
The Young Ambassador for the world’s biggest arts charity, The Big Draw, Zoom is passionate about promoting the importance of creativity in all school subjects and has been invited to speak about this at the House of Commons, advertising industry events and Art galleries across the UK. He’s also “Artist in Residence” at ‘Simpsons in The Strand’ Restaurant in London, and recently illustrated the Political Book of The Year 2020, ‘The Prime Ministers’ published by Hodder UK.
He is a member of ‘The Professional Cartoonists’ Association’ and ‘The British Cartoonist Association’ and a patron for The Lakes International Comic Arts Festival in Kendal.
Jack Teagle is an artist and illustrator from the South West of the UK. He has had his work published by Nobrow, Retrofit Comics, McSweeney’s. During his career, he’s built up little worlds, characters and narratives, and is inspired by popular culture, magic and folklore, to name a few things.
Clarice Tudor is a comic artist and cartoonist specialising in sad dogs and self-deprecating comedy. Her introspective comics go from wholesome to savage fast enough to give you whiplash.
Clarice’s quippy one-liners have amassed over 62,000 followers on Instagram. But it’s not just webcomics! Clarice also writes longer form graphic short stories such as Love at First Bite, a sweet tale of two queer vampires which was longlisted for the coveted Observer/Cape/Comica Graphic Short Story Prize.
After graduating from the University of Leeds, she turned her personal artistic practice into a thriving small business as well as working freelance! Clarice’s impressive list of clients includes The Guardian, Sanrio/Hello Kitty, It’s Nice That and Tumblr.
Clarice’s visual style relies heavily on cuteness and animals as a means of taking ugly feelings and making them more digestible. She thinks “anthropomorphism makes it far easier to look at ourselves honestly.” She states that her goal is similar to that of many cartoonists – to take a thought, concept, feeling or issue and break it down into an appealing, simple, easy-to-digest piece of art that inspires or soothes the soul. What sets Clarice apart is her youthful wit.
• Check out the Ten Years to Save the World web site here | Connect with the project on Twitter and Instagram #10YearsToSaveTheWorld #TheClimateConnection #COP26 | (COP26 and the British Council are also using the hashtag -#TogetherForOurPlanet)