Artist Talk In Poughkeepsie Saturday October 9th!

On Saturday I will be giving an artist talk IN PERSON at the Boardman Library in Poughkeepsie, NY about telling life stories in comics!

My inner 10 year old is doing backflips because I used to stare at this picture and imagine the lives of my cartooning heroes Wendy and Richard Pini, creators and authors of the Elfquest series, and wonder from my California home, where the heck Poughkeepsie was, and how you even pronounced it, and if there was a way I could possibly run away to live with them, or magically jump into the picture. Now I live 20 miles south of them and although my life doesn’t have elves in it, I have in a sense magically entered that picture through drawing my life in comic form–but wait! I’m spoiling my talk!

Register here and come hear me talk all about that portal between life and drawing and writing and living. It will be masked, social distanced, but it will be personal! Come on over!

Saturday, October 9, 1:00pm

Summer Pierre Artist Talk

Poughkeepsie Public Library, 141 Boardman Road, Poughkeepsie, NY


A Couple of Art Monsters: Summer Pierre Talks to Lisa Brown

MUTHA Magazine asked me to interview the funny, SMART, and talented illustrator and author Lisa Brown.  


Lisa in her gorgeous studio – photo by Kristen Sard

I have admired Lisa’s work for years and so was excited at the prospect. We had such a good time talking to each other that we kept on gabbing for a full hour and a half!  I would still be high from this talk if it weren’t for the utter…MORTIFICATION that I experienced transcribing the interview. I had never done an interview before and was unprepared for THE SOUND OF MY TERRIBLE LAUGHTER (of which there was plenty) AND NERVOUS, SLOBBERY VOICE (a totally impartial observation). Luckily, Lisa shined through for us both and made it all worth it.

I think you can tell we had fun talking to each other. Go on over and read the interview!

My World


In the dustbin of “Least Important News Items” comes this latest bulletin: I just finished this drawing for my “about” image for my web site. I’ve always loved drawings like this that illustrators and cartoonists do of themselves to somehow capture their world.  This was fun to make because I liked thinking of all the influences and interests that my comic work is made from which includes art and writing, but also memories and basic life stuff. I actually have that rug with the turned up corners in my studio. Gus isn’t usually so happy reading comics under my feet, but he does love some Calvin and Hobbes (as do I). Gye Smiley comics in the lower right hand corner was the comic book series I made as a kid. The portrait on the left is my grandfather. I drink lots of water out of that water bottle. The drawing taped to the lamp on the right is a picture Gus drew of me.

(You get the idea.)

It feels like an accurate depiction of how I do my work–balancing the needs of my home life with everything else. None of it is very organized and yet it somehow amounts to something.

Now back to more important things…



Happy 60th Birthday Lynda Barry!

Happy 60th Lynda Barry!

“We know that athletes, musicians, and actors all have to practice, rehearse, repeat things until it gets in the body, the ‘muscle memory’ but for some reason writers and visual artists think they have to be inspired before they make something, not suspecting the physical act of writing or drawing is what brings that inspiration about. Worrying about its worth and value to others before it exists can keep us immobilized forever. Any story we write or picture we make cannot demonstrate its worth until we write or draw it. The answer cannot come to us any other way.”

-Happy 60th to the glorious Lynda Barry!

Heather McAdams show in Chicago

heather show 1Folks, if you are anywhere NEAR Chicago, get ye to the Sulzer Library IMMEDIATELY and go see the Heather McAdams show there–and tell me about it!  Better yet, go to the opening THIS THURSDAY and meet her lovely self and get the whole Heather McAdams experience in art, film, and person!  This is what Oscar Arriola the curator had to say about Heather and the show:

She’ll be presenting one of her patented film jamborees with her husband [the musician] Chris Ligon, this coming Thursday, July 9th. The reception is at 6pm and the films begin at 7pm. Her comics and other artwork are on display on both floors of the Sulzer Regional Library, 4455 N. Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL through the end of July, 2015. The event is free.

More info can be found here.

Seriously, please go and tell her hi from  me!

Make Way for the Cartoonists

May Way For The Cartoonists

Just in case, here’s the B. Kliban cartoon a little larger:

Oh my golly, MoCCA Fest was fun and exhausting.  There were so many people and so many things to see.  It was my first time tabling and I learned almost immediately that due to the sheer amount of stuff to look at, if some stranger stops and REALLY LOOKS at your work it is because they are either 1) randomly curious 2) somebody told them to.  By Sunday I was literally in front of the table yelling things to get people’s attention.  Sometimes it worked!  It helped that my table mates were my audience–I mainly did things to crack them up.  This was easy.  By Sunday we were all punchy as hell from sheer exhaustion.

Some of you stopped by and I *loved* meeting you!  THANK YOU for coming by!  DOUBLE thanks for buying my wares.  You helped me make my table fee back!

Mainly, the weekend just felt like a delicious cartoonist smorgasbord. I met amazing people, completely nerded out on cartoon and comics stuff (who else who reference a B. Kliban comic??), and felt overwhelmed with gratitude that I have at last (in this funny late stage) discovered my community.  I have always wanted to find you, comics people.  You are a funny, nerdy, lumpy group and it is an honor and a privilege to be among you!

Heather McAdams is Alive and Well

prop show766

Well gang, Heather Mcadams is alive and well and still making art in Chicago.  I already knew that, but I didn’t quite know WHAT she was doing and man alive she’s doing A LOT.

Two of you were kind to do more sleuthing on your own and found an e-mail address in an odd corner of the internet for Heather and sent it to me (thank you Robyn & Rebecca!).  I was nervous as heck to write her because it wasn’t like she was advertising her e-mail anywhere and I didn’t want to come off as a crazy stalker.  I hesitated for about a second and then thought the magic words *What*the*Hell* and e-mailed her.  My intention was to see if she was still making comics and if there was anyway I could HELP her get more visibility.  In these comics loving times, when her contemporaries are being celebrated for their groundbreaking work, it genuinely seems odd to me that her name is not thrown around more.

I am so happy to say she wrote me back and sent me some examples of her more current work–and gave me permission to show it off.   Continue reading

Where Art Thou Heather McAdams?

h mccadams 3 h mccadams 1 h mccadams  h mccadams 2 In search of autobiographical comics, I recently stumbled upon the work of Heather McAdams, a Chicago based cartoonist (filmmaker & artist as well) I adored in the late 90’s, but had forgotten about. Upon rediscovering her work, I immediately remembered what I loved–the folk art feel of her lines and the zany, sometimes dark humor.  So much of the autobiographical work I read (and make) these days takes itself SO SERIOUSLY, I forgot how there was a strain of autobiographical comics in the 80’s and 90’s that could be dark and yet have a delightful artistic wackiness.  Her drawing style makes me remember the thrift stores I went to as a kid, filled with country LPs and wood paneling on the walls.

Trying to find more of her work has been a bit of a sleuthing project, as she has no current internet presence at all, except for some breadcrumbs here and there from 2013 and back.  She used to make a country calendar every year and (I think) has gone on to make An Everything But Country Calendar–though where you would buy this, I haven’t a clue.  (Heather, if you are reading this–please set up a shop somewhere on line–I would buy your wares!)  I ordered her fantastic (out of print) book Cartoon Girl and have been learning a lot from it.  Why she is not more known or appreciated is beyond me.  I may have to go to Chicago and track her down.  I’ve been having fantasies of going out to breakfast or thrift store shopping with her so we can draw together.  You never know.  It could happen, right?