ABBY DENSONWE'RE WORKING ON IT...作業中です..
Hi Abby, for the people who don’t know you, and don’t know about your body of work, please tell them about yourself ?
I’m a cartoonist from New York. I’ve been drawing comics since 1996, my art is inspired by manga and indie books like Love and Rockets, as well as the punk and zine culture. I studied illustration at Parsons School of Design and spent a Summer studying at Sophia University in Tokyo. My graphic novels are Tough Love and Dolltopia (which won an International Manga Award and a Moonbeam Children’s Book Award). I’ve also scripted various licensed comics including Powerpuff Girls, Simpsons Comics, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and Amazing Spider-Man Family. My favorite fine artist is Keith Haring. I worked as an assistant for Rodney Greenblat (artists for the game Parappa the Rapper) and since we love the same music and are musicians too we made a record together with our band called Let’s Audio that’s in a fun new wave style (it’s for sale on itunes). I’ve also played in various all-girl punk bands (usually playing bass guitar).
I love to travel and draw comics about food and travel too. My current project is a book about traveling in Japan, due out next Fall. I also have a dessert blog about New York area sweets called City Sweet Tooth.
I read your book Dolltopia and really enjoyed it, I really like the way it deals with issues and ideas that tweens and teens often have. Most of your comics leave me feeling that you want to empower your readers with the knowledge and feeling that they should try and have a life that is own their own terms. How important is it for you to make this statement ?
Thank you! I think it’s a really important statement. There are a lot of social pressures on everybody that keep them unhappy and unable to fulfil their true potential. The molds society creates are not for everybody, and I think it’s very important for people to have autonomy in their lives, and to be individuals. This message is especially important for teens.
Can you tell us about any current projects that you have on the go, and how they are going ?
I’m working on that travel book about Japan, it will be officially announced with more details next year, but I can tell you it’s a comic, and I’ve been drawing it every day the past few months. This will be my first full color book too!
Also, this month a cookbook is coming out that I drew some recipe comics for as well. It’s by the Robicellis who make the best cupcakes in NYC!
So Abby, you’re here for the Kaiga International Manga Festival that takes place on the 20th October, how are your preparations going for that ?
Pretty good, we shipped our books, and they got here fine (we’ve been traveling in Japan for a week, and just got to Tokyo now). I’m exhibiting with my husband - Matt Loux, and our friends Yuuko Koyama and Brian Stone. We’re looking forward to it!
I see that you’ve been into punk for a long time. We ask all of the artists we interview to tell us about the music they like to listen to when they working or just to recommend something to our readers and we drop in a youtube video under the interview, so do you listen to a lot of punk when illustrating, or do you listen to something else ? Let us know what you’d like us to post !
I listen mostly to old punk and new wave, and I really like listening to WFMU too (a free-form radio station that can be heard at wfmu.org ). Shows I like on WFMU include Cherry Blossom Clinic, Three Chord Monte, Evan Funk Davies, The Best Show on WFMU, and the Evan “Funk” Davies Show. Lots of great music, you can listen to the archives, and it’s free!
Here are a few fave songs from youtube:
The Bags - Babylonian Gorgon
I love this song. The music and lyrics are great! Alice Bag has a great memoir out now too. I got to meet her at a reading, and she is so nice! I gave her a copy of Dolltopia and she tweeted to me that she liked it a lot.
Hunx and His Punx - You Don’t Like Rock n’ Roll
This one is really campy and funny. Hunx and His Punx are probably my favorite newish / current band.
Thanks for your time Abby !
Thanks for the interview! ^_^