The Cel Shaded report, 6/30: Pen & Ink Works’ fresh page

June 30th, 2011

As an artist, perhaps one of the most exciting, scary times in the art creation process may be when you’re presented with a fresh page in your sketchbook that you can fill with whatever your creative little heart desires. It’s exciting because you have the power to create vast, infinite worlds — or perhaps an intimate, intensely personal piece — with just a few strokes of your pen, pencil or digital stylus. It’s scary because sometimes you’re never quite sure how the final product will turn out — masterpiece, wastebasket filler, or something in between.

I started thinking about the other day when I received an email from Brady Evans. If you’ve read this blog regularly, you’ve seen Brady. He’s the guy you saw helping out at MangaBento’s Manga Mayhem event last July.

And the one who had some of his art featured in MangaBento’s Kakimochi exhibit in February.

Not to mention the guy under attack at the MangaBento/Kawaii Kon table at the Honolulu Festival (new estimated release date for that post: sometime before Duke Nukem Forever comes out … wait, it’s already out? Dagnabbit.)

And, of course, we last saw him trading books with Jon Murakami at Kawaii Kon.

It was at the con, in fact, that Brady told me something that made my jaw drop. You’ll note that in many of the above pictures, I’ve noted his connection with MangaBento. Imagine my surprise when he said he had split with the group and was working on starting a new art group … and one formally affiliated with Kawaii Kon, at that. You could call it his “fresh page” moment.

Details were still sketchy (no pun intended) when he told me that on May 1, but since then the details have filled in quite nicely … to the point that his new group, Pen & Ink Works, is ready to have its coming-out party. And that party is hitching its wagon to one of the larger free-admission events on the art community calendar: ArtSpree 2011, the Contemporary Museum’s annual open house and family day on July 9.

Here’s what Brady me told me about Pen & Ink Works in his email:

We aim to promote the creative aspects of manga and anime as an art form as well as a method of expression for people of all ages and backgrounds. Following in the spirit of the dynamic and diverse nature of manga and anime membership is open to artists of all forms and styles; all that’s required is a passion for creation. I’m hoping to have the group focus on the educational aspects of manga/anime drawing as well as community outreach.  Many kids (including myself way back when) become interested in drawing by doodling their favorite cartoon characters.  We hope to nurture this creativity and provide an environment where people can feel comfortable to show and talk about their work as well as receive advice.

The group will host a manga printmaking station at ArtSpree, applying the artistic technique of monoprinting to the world of manga. If you don’t know what monoprinting is, you can look at a simple tutorial over at Moopy & Me, the Nest Studio blog … or if you can’t be bothered with clicking through links at the moment, suffice it to say that it’s delicately drawing on top of an ink-covered sheet, then pulling the sheet away to reveal an impression on a second sheet.

This event is going to be pretty big — any time you have two radio deejays, Hyper Squad & Jr Hype, Dancers Unlimited, Heartbeat, the Cherry Blossom Cabaret and poet Jocelyn Ng among the many acts sharing the stage, and a whole bunch of other art activity stations to boot, you can expect there will be a large crowd to match. To that end, I wouldn’t recommend parking at the Makiki museum itself, but rather taking advantage of the shuttles that will be running to and from the alma mater of the president, Michelle Wie and a certain Star-Advertiser anime and manga blogger, Punahou School. Again, the event is July 9, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; visit the Friends of The Contemporary Museum’s ArtSpree page to learn all about it. Or have an official brochure (warning: PDF file beyond that link).

After ArtSpree, Brady hopes to get some regular meetings up and running, probably starting in August. I actually have the venue they’re considering, but I’ll wait until details firm up on that before releasing that info. For now, though, keep watching the group’s website at its Facebook page.

HEXXP’s (slightly old, but still relevant) guest announcement

While we’re on the topic of artists, I have to admit that I’ve been sitting on this next item for several weeks, but I just haven’t been able to figure out how to smoothly integrate it into whatever else I’ve been talking about. The transition I used in the last sentence should give you an indication that I’ve finally found a way to do just that.

That’s because the newest guest announced recently by HEXXP, the Hawaii Entertainment Expo, is an artist himself: Phil Yeh, the “godfather of the American graphic novel,” creative mind behind the Cazco and Winged Tiger series and founder of Cartoonists Across America and the World, an organization that promotes reading, music and art through cartoons and humor. Mentioning Yeh in this post also means I get to dig through my backlog of as-yet-unpublished pictures from past events and finally publish a few of them — the cartoonist group was, after all, behind the mural-painting event at Kahala Mall back in March. So here’s a picture of Yeh and Jon Murakami signing their collaboration, The Winged Tiger and the Dragons of Hawaii.

Yeh joins J-rockers Takahashi O’hashi and ALSDEAD and voice actor Kyle Hebert as guests during the two-day convention, being held Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 at the Blaisdell Center. Visit for more information or to register.

One Response to “The Cel Shaded report, 6/30: Pen & Ink Works’ fresh page”

  1. Roy Chang:

    Great article on Brady. I just got an email from him about his events and I’m so glad he’s continuing the educational and guidance part of anime and manga for all aspiring artists. It’s good to have an outlet for artists to share and get feedback from others.

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