Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Album Design for Nicole Belanus

I recently designed an album for musical artist Nicole Belanus called "The Grown Demos."

It was fun to design the sleeve packaging and CD -- plus Nicole is a great client to work with! Check out her tunes here. I like how she has tunes and I have toons. It's a great combo.

Let's Work Together
If you are interested in my illustration and/or design skills, please view my portfolio and reach out:

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Black Magic Tales published in Magic Bullet #15 and #16

Catching up on a bit of old news -- hopefully it may be actual news to someone reading this blog! Magic Bullet, a comics anthology newspaper based out of the Washington, DC area has published our Black Magic Tales stories. Magic Bullet #15 came out in the fall of 2017. Our story "Vacation" captures the adventures world famous criminals Roxy Monroe and Dean Casanova (and their cat, Black Magic).

The latest issue of Magic Bullet #16 premiered in February 2018. Our story "Award Season" was inspired by the #MeToo movement and Harvey Weinstein allegations. Both stories were written by Joe Carabeo and illustrated by Carolyn Belefski. Be on the lookout for your free copy! Common places to find this publication include comic book stores, tattoo parlors, record shops, and hip restaurants.

Did you know? Black Magic Tales has been published in every addition of Magic Bullet. The publication started with a print run of 500 in August of 2010. The print run for issue #16 was 4,000.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Recap: DC Web Fest Year 6

This past Friday I attended my first DC Web Fest and had a invigorating time. My day started out at the AT&T Forum for Technology, Entertainment, and Policy. Lunch was provided from Fresh Connections Catering and then I attended the podcasting panel before leading the "Writer's Write-In Script & Blog selection chat" with Lauren Brown (Fashion Grunge) and Barrett Smith (The Morning After Zine). At the panel I was surprised to meet Dan Silverman, the creator of PoPville, the blog I nominated in the awards category. The conversation was very insightful and relatable to how we began and where technology is leading us in the future.

I also had the opportunity to experience AR technology and game demos.

After the panel a bus was scheduled to take us to the The Australian Embassy. The bus was running late, so after twenty minutes to waiting outside, I mentioned that we should walk. Only one person took me up on that, a man named Scooter, who I have not seen in probably eight years -- back when I was a guest on his DC Geeks podcast. We ended up arriving when the bus arrived, so I'm glad we get to burn some calories and enjoy our time outside.

It was cool to attend the International Screening Block -- we saw fantastic short films from around the globe. Alice in Paris was the first we saw and it is a delightful series that reminded me of Amélie. We were also treated to delicious food.

The DC Web Fest continued on Saturday with more speakers and an awards ceremony.

Congratulations to Otessa for creating DC Web Fest -- thank you to the volunteers, sponsors, staff, attendees, and speakers.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

DC Web Fest is April 6-7, 2018

Excited to be a guest at DC Web Fest! This Friday from 4-5PM I will be moderating Writer's Write-In (forum 2) Script & Blog selection chat with Lauren Brown. The event will be hosted at AT&T Forum for Technology, Entertainment, and Policy (601 New Jersey Avenue, NW, Washington DC 20001)

DC Web Fest serves to entertain, educate and promote the innovative forms and diverse voices in the new media landscape. From web series to apps to games to VR, we celebrate new media in its ever changing form.

Be sure to catch the year 6 festival from April 6-7, 2018!

View the schedule here:

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Recap: Awesome Con 2018

Curls Studio celebrated our sixth appearance at Awesome Con this past weekend. For me the show was very enjoyable and it brought back feelings of the first Awesome Con. That was special because the show has grown so much and this one felt comfortable and less overwhelming than other years. I had fun seeing the guests, participating in a panel, and having more time at our table this year.

For those of you who don't know about Awesome Con, it's a three day extravaganza of all things awesome: fandom, sci-fi, comics, movies, cosplay, celebrities, voice actors... they have it all!

On Friday I was on the "The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators" panel with Thom Zahler and Chrissie Zullo. We gave great advice about the transformation of attending the show as a spectator and transforming into an exhibitor. Audio of the event will soon be up on the Carolyn and Joe Show podcast.

Joe continued to produce the "Awesome Con Short Film Fest" to a standing room only crowd on both Friday (Horror, Action, Sci-Fi) and Saturday (Comedy, Drama) afternoons.

On Friday I had the opportunity to meet WWE wrestlers The New Day and get their autographs. I was wearing their t-shirt, so it was exciting to represent the power of positivity!

I was hyped that the guys from the TV show Boy Meets World (Ben Savage, Rider Strong, Will Friedle) were going to be at Awesome Con the moment the show made the announcement! Boy Meets World and Freaks and Geeks are hands down my favorite TV shows of all-time. Apparently this was Ben Savage's first convention. It started with Will Friedle as a guest at last year's Awesome Con (I got the opportunity to moderate his panel with Grey DeLisle Griffin -- you can listen to the audio here). Will has done several conventions and then he started to get Rider interested in attending them as well. Now they brought in Ben!

Saturday was the Boy Meets World panel and I was lucky to have a moment to step away from the table and attend the panel -- to my surprise actor Danny McNulty who plays the bully Harley Keiner was in the audience! That was so cool that he came to the show. I got to tell him how much I love BMW and how he is a legendary like "A Christmas Story" bullies. After the show, I found him on social media and he is doing a lot of good working on anti-bulling efforts. Yet another message BMW continues to share years after and with the Girl Meets World series.

The panel was amazing -- all the guys are so charismatic and charming and funny. So many great BMW lessons and behind-the-scenes memories were shared during the audience Q&A. I loved being there with a huge audience full of BMW fans. Discussing topics that are still relevant today like Shawn and Angela's relationship, #MeToo movement, and more. The day was also actor William Daniels's 91st birthday and they talked about their respect for Mr. Feeny.

Sunday was Easter, so I went to mass in the morning while Joe covered the table responsibilities. We had a blast hanging out behind the table with our neighbor Jessica Howard, the creator of "Love Metal."

I met Paddington Bear! Also Phil LaMarr came to our table to chat and I told him all about the 100 Sad Fish I recently drew. So. Much. Awesome.

Mega thanks to the Awesome Con staff, volunteers, fellow exhibitors, guests, and attendees for an AWESOME event. I can't wait until next year and hope to be back -- mark your calendars for April 26-28, 2019.

As of right now, the next comic show will be a new one -- Fairfax Comic Con -- on August 25-26, 2018. There might be smaller appearances that could pop up, but I don't envision doing a big show before that. This will give us time to produce a new book. One of the benefits of going to shows is meeting people in-person. I value the interactions of chatting with people in real life, but it does take time to make comics and many creators struggle with the tour schedule and finding time to make new books. Not to mention sometimes the touring is our actual "vacation" time!

You can also catch me this Friday -- I'll be a guest at DC Web Fest. I won't have any comic displays, but I will hanging out if you want to say hi!

Monday, March 26, 2018

Awesome Con is March 30 - April 1, 2018

We hope you can join us this weekend for the sixth edition of Awesome Con on March 30 - April 1, 2018 at the DC Convention Center. Curls Studio will be located at table R17 in Artist Alley. View the map above where the pink pulse signal circles are so you'll know where to find us.

In addition to exhibiting, we have a few panels we'll be taking part in:

The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators
3/30/2018 / 3:30 PM - 4:15 PM / 202 B
Are you a creator considering exhibiting at Artist Alley or Small Press comic conventions? This panel will give you tips and suggestions on how to create your professional appearances from the POV of being behind the table. We will discuss the metamorphosis from attendee to exhibitor, effective table display design, how to talk and interact with people at your table, and how to generate sales with your table pitch. We will highlight the process of starting a comic book tour on a low budget and methods of attracting potential readers by promoting your appearances and will take questions and comments, as this will be a conversation on multiple subjects regarding how to build rewarding convention appearances from the ground up.
Panelists: Chrissie Zullo, Thom Zahler, Carolyn Belefski
Moderator: Joe Carabeo

Awesome Con Short Film Fest: Horror, Action, Sci-Fi
3/30/2018 / 5:00 PM - 6:30 PM / 101
Finish your day of insanity at Awesome Con by grabbing some popcorn, all your friends, and a seat, as Joe Carabeo (Director, Astray Productions, Project Resolution) and Otessa Marie Ghadar (Director, 2020 Production, DC Web Fest Founder) bring to Awesome Con for the second time, The Awesome Con Short Film Festival! Day 1 of the fest is Sci Fi, Action and Horror Edition! You won't wanna miss watching some selected works of, Kuni Ohi, Hunter Brumfield, Stuart Willis, Sonja O'Hara, Joe Carabeo, Brian Pennington and Karen Gill-Pennington and more! These films will send you to another planet, or give you nightmares. The filmmakers will also have a Q&A/Conversation after the screenings.

Awesome Con Short Film Fest: Comedy and Drama
3/310/2018 / 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM / 101
Take a break from the insanity of Awesome Con by grabbing some popcorn, all your friends, and a seat, as Joe Carabeo (Director, Astray Productions, Project Resolution) and Otessa Marie Ghadar (Director, 2020 Production, DC Web Fest Founder) bring to Awesome Con for the 2nd time, an Awesome Con Short Film Festival! Day 2 of the festival is the Comedy and Drama Edition! Enjoy selected short films from Amy Jo Johnson, Joe Carabeo, Jai Jamison, Joey Tran, Nick Leveski, Aaron Grant and Megan Holly! These films will ether make you cry, fall out of your seat laughing, or just feel all the feels. The filmmakers will also have a exclusive Q&A/ Conversation after the screenings. 

Thursday, March 22, 2018

PREVIEWS Women In Comics Month: Interview with Carolyn Belefski

In honor of Women in Comics this March, PREVIEWSworld interviewed me. Have a small taste of the interview below, then read the full article here:

PREVIEWSworld: Who is your current comics employer?

Carolyn Belefski: Curls Studio.

PREVIEWSworld: What is your primary job title? In a quick phrase or two, could you define your job’s key responsibility?

Carolyn Belefski: Creative Director, all-encompassing roles ranging from writer, artist, letterer, colorist, editorial, promotion, and more

PREVIEWSworld: Could you please explain how your work helps make comics a reality? (Connect the dots for us. Where are you in the flow of getting a book into reader's hands?)

Carolyn Belefski: Making a finished self-published product takes quite an amount of additional effort because once the book is completed your creative resources need to flip to the business side. I’m there from start to finish: from when the idea comes into my head as I’m brushing my teeth, to the creation of full art and story, then the production phase, and physically selling the books in-person to people. It’s literally a hand-to-hand interaction: from my hand to the customer. It’s great that the audience gets to meet actual creators when they attend comic conventions. Since 2013 I’ve been making signing appearances during Free Comic Book Day at local stores. I’ve also exhibited at zine fests, craft shows, and a used book store. I’ve sold comics in many locations during book-related events: church, bowling alley, outside tent in a snowstorm, city hall, universities, art galleries, restaurants, fire department…