Category Archives: Anthologies

Call for Submissions from Queer, Male Artists

Project Title: Queer Bodies in Confidence

What Is this Project and Who Can Participate?  

This project is a comic anthology that is focused on body positivity for queer men. Using health literature and personal experiences, artists that identify within the LGBTQ community are asked to create a comic strip regarding how society and culture influences body image and the impacts this has on the mental and sexual health of queer men, including gay, bisexual, queer, trans, two-spirited, and other men who have sex with men.  It is our goal to capture as much diversity and as many stories as possible in the pages of this work.

Who We Are?

Our team consists of students from Dalhousie University and Queens University working within queer healthcare. The team consists of Phillip Joy, Matthew Lee, and Stephanie Gauvin.

wallman
All art by Sam Wallman ( @wallmansam )

Why Are We Doing This?

This project aims to:

  1. Start conversations about the cultural influences of body image for queer men
  2. Work towards improving the overall health and well-being of queen men
  3. Challenge stereotypes about the bodies of queer men
  4. Showcase the diversity within our communities

What Will Be Done with the Comic?

The comic will be published in print copy and may be posted online through our website and social media accounts. Printed copies will be sent to various LGBTQ health, resource, and community centres across Canada. The comic book may also be presented at academic conferences or within university classroom settings.

What’s in It for Me?

Your contribution will make a positive impact on the health of queer men across Canada. In addition, artists will be paid a standard one-time fee of $200/page. You will also receive a copy of the published book.

Funding

This project is funding by Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

How Do I Participate?

Submit an electric/digital portfolio that includes your contact information, website information, and a brief bio (max 250 words) that details on why you would be an excellent artist for this collaboration. Also include a short proposal (max 250 words or a few illustrations) that outlines your comic submission and details how it aligns with the overall project and its goals. This proposal may include concept artwork for the comic. Submission of a proposal does not guarantee inclusion in the anthology or payment. Selected artists will be contacted and asked to sign an artist contract detailing their rights and responsibilities. For those artists whose work is not selected, the rights to their proposal remain with them.

Please email your electric submission package as a single pdf to: queerbodiescomics@gmail.com

Deadlines:

Proposal Deadline: Sept 20, 2018

Please note that we will attempt to notify all artists within 3 weeks of the proposal deadline regarding their submission.

Storyboard Deadline: Dec 8, 2018

Final Comic Deadline: Jan 25, 2019

Comic Format Requirements

Comic Book Dimensions: 17.8 x 22.9 cm | 7″ x 9″ (It is critical for layouts and final product to format your comics to these dimensions.)

Colouring: Black and white is acceptable but coloured comics are preferred

Text Language: English text only

Comic Length: 4 pages maximum

PLEASE NOTE: It is up to the artist to complete and submit their comic with text on the date of above deadline to ensure publication within the anthology. Payments to the artists will only be made upon successful submission at the deadline.

What Should My Comic Be About?

Although there are many aspects to body image, we are focusing this work on two aspects that have been identified within health research to contribute to body dissatisfaction and health issues in queer men – weight and muscularity.

Your work should feature a story focused on how social and cultural influences in the queer community influences the body image of men and how body image may, in turn, affect their mental or sexual health.

The comic can be within any genre (realistic/fantasy/superhero/Manga).

The comic may contain your own real experiences with the topic or be drawn from the research. Below are some potential topics, identified from health research, your comic may address. You are not limited to these topics but should contact us if you have other topics to ensure it fits within the scope of the project.

What Are Some Possible Social/Cultural Issues to Address

  • Social media use, websites
  • Dating apps – Grindr, Trinder, Scruff
  • Pornography
  • Anxiety during sexual intimacy with partner(s)
  • How talking with a partner can help with body image concerns
  • HIV-related concerns about body image
  • Media – advertisements, TV, magazines
  • Fitness and beauty industries
  • Ideas surrounding masculinities
  • Intersections with ethnicities, race, aging
  • Heteronormativity and gender norms within Canadian society
  • Social stigma and marginalization

The research shows that all of the above issues can shape the health experiences of queer men. These issues may also contribute to the exclusion of bodies on basis of weight or ethnicity through the images and language used in them.

What Are Some of the Health Issues Related to Body Dissatisfaction?

Body dissatisfaction is “never benign” (Jankowski, 2015, p. 34).

  • depression
  • eating concerns, eating restraints, eating disorders, purging and binging of foods
  • body and muscle dysmorphia, steroid use
  • isolation, feelings of being inadequacy
  • avoiding social situations
  • issues with sexual intimacy
  • stress and tension
  • social exclusion
  • risks of STIs

What to Avoid in your Comic

Avoid stories that could potentially stereotype queer men.

Questions

Please check out our “Frequently Asked Questions” document [ https://tinyurl.com/y7c6n9j7 ] and if you have further questions, please contact us at queerbodiescomics@gmail.com

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Fluid Prejudice Re-inks Australian History

“The very ink with which all history is written is merely fluid prejudice.” – Mark Twain

Review by Sky Croeser

Unlike most histories from above or below, Fluid Prejudice stands out as one that doesn’t provide a coherent narrative. Instead, it’s a dream-like journey through Australian history, haunted by the violence of colonization. Single-image cartoons jostle with longer stories, and well-known figures sit side-by-side with personal stories. Some characters recur in different forms across stories, shifting from the foreground to the background. This jumble creates a more radical approach to history which leaves questions and contradictions unanswered, rather than offering the reader an easy vantage-point.

TCAF_FP

Title: Fluid Prejudice
Creators: Sam Wallman, Aaron Manhattan, Safdar Ahmed, Katie Parrish, and others (50 contributors in total)
Editor: Sam Wallman
Published: Self-published in 2014
Page Count: 175 pages
Other Specs: Softcover, black and white interior with colour cover
Purchase: In the Ad Astra Comix online store

While it may be tempting for many white activists to dissociate themselves from Australian racism, the collection doesn’t allow the reader to imagine that they can be outside processes of colonization. In one comic, two environmentalists engaging in direct action query whether this is part of the continuing white colonization of the forest. In another, white Occupy protesters pause to consider the irony of following the chant “Always was, always will be, Aboriginal land” with “Whose streets? Our streets!”

memory-from-occupy
“Memory from Occupy”. Contribution by Sam Wallman.

Similarly, we never get to wholly lose identification with the middle-class Australians who are so often the target of activist derision. For example, a comic about the destruction of old growth forests is followed by another in which a man looks at a newly-opened suburb, daydreaming about a home there. While the image hints at typical narratives of suburbia as a site of ecological destruction and bland whiteness, there’s also an element of sympathetic identification.

fluid_prejudice_singlesAustralia’s history as a penal colony, too, is treated through a overlapping stories which never quite settle into a single perspective. Fluid Prejudice focuses on stories of escape, with convict William Buckley reappearing several times throughout the collection. Mary Bryant, a transported thief, escapes and is later pardoned. However, the optimism of these stories is balanced by the stark list of different convict occupations in 1847 Tasmania, and the subtle reminders that convicts also played a role in the violence of colonization.

Both cities and the landscape become haunted sites. The Tasmania tiger, hunted to extinction as a part of the effort to impose a European approach to agriculture, reappears throughout the book stalking the supposedly-tamed undergrowth. Within the city, state and social control is undermined by a lesbian beat, working-class resistance to restrictions on free speech, and an underground city of train station platforms and graveyards which remain below the streets. No place is more authentically a site of struggle than others.

Contribution by Karina Castan
Contribution by Karina Castan

Fluid Prejudice rejects the erasure of the violence Australia was built on, but it also highlights moments of solidarity and hope. One comic reminds us that the only known protest against Germany’s persecution of Jewish people following Kristallnacht came from the Australian Aborigines’ league in 1938. In another, people run over rooftops and onto the top of trams as part of attempts to escape police crackdowns on public speech. We’re reminded of a period when unions were more radical, and prepared to down tools to save public space and support other struggles.

As well as these more overtly political stories, many of the notes of optimism and humour in this collection touch on the politics of gender and sexuality: Percy Haynes is followed by a policeman and charged for wearing women’s clothes, only to have the magistrate decide that since women can wear pants, there’s no reason men can’t wear dresses if they choose. Zeki Müren, a Turkish singer, performed in drag in Sydney in 1974 to an enthusiastic crowd of homesick Turkish immigrants.

fluid_prejudice_lesbianbeatPart of the beauty of this collection is the inclusion of mundane scenes and lives that would not usually reach the history books. There are fragmentary scenes of an Aboriginal embassy, passengers on a tram, a trip to Healesville sanctuary, even a dumpster. We learn about Rosaleen Norten, the witch of King’s Cross, and then about cartoonist Ruby Knight’s mother. Arlene Textaqueen replaces the front cover of conservative newspaper The Australian with responses to the question, ‘Where are you really from?’

Through the combination of explicitly political and more personal stories, resistance is written through many different forms and spaces. This is a helpful alternative to the ‘one true way’ approach to activism, in which a single set of tactics and strategies is the only way to be radical enough (or, conversely, polite enough).

Fluid Prejudice, as we might expect from an alternative history, undermines the myths Australia is built on, from heroic stories of settlers eking out a living in the bush to the ongoing erasure of the violence against Aboriginal people and other marginalized groups. However, it also encourages more critical reflection on our positions as activists and the ways in which we do—or don’t—identify with others within Australian society.

An Interview with ONE TRIBE Anthology Editor James Waley

‘One Tribe Anthology’ editor James Waley sat down to answer some questions about the upcoming release.  We posted questions about the aesthetic, political and practical implications of the undertaking.  His thoughtful reply is below!

ONE TRIBE --- MARK A. NELSON - HARDCOVER - FINAL with logo, border & text #1


What is the One Tribe Anthology? What is the origin of the name, “One Tribe”, and how was that chosen to represent the work? 
The ONE TRIBE anthology is a non-profit book published by Jack Lake Productions in association with James Waley of Pique Productions as a fundraiser in support of the SHANNEN’S DREAM campaign which carries on the outstanding and courageous work done by the late Shannen Koostachin of Attawapiskat to improve the learning environment of First Nations schools in Canada.

Continue reading An Interview with ONE TRIBE Anthology Editor James Waley