Friday, December 31, 2010

Recap: Curls Studio's Year of 2010

Today is the last day of the year 2010. This past year has been the busiest year I've had in my life. A lot of things happened to me professionally and personally. All the activities we've done with Curls Studio are no exception, as we've kept pushing harder with our creations. We also had 13 tour stops this year, with a total of 18 days dedicated "behind the table." Below is our 2010 tour schedule with links to event recaps and/or photos to each event, so you can click to read all about the events.

2010 TOUR

MAY 2 • DC Comicon
MAY 23 • Handmade Mart
AUG 8 • Philadelphia Alternative Comic Con
AUG 28-29 • Baltimore Comic-Con
SEP 11-12 • Small Press Expo
OCT 2 • Crafty Bastards
OCT 3 • Capicons Comic Book & Pop Culture Con
OCT 8-10 • New York Comic Con
OCT 16-17 • Pittsburgh Indy Comics Expo
OCT 24 • DC Counter Culture Festival
NOV 17 • In Between The Panels: DC's Emergence on the Graphic Novel Scene
NOV 21 • Holiday Heist
DEC 19 • Rock-n-Shop

In addition to listing appearances, I'd thought it would also be nice to recap specific projects of 2010.

I kicked off January with Sketch Before Sleep, where I've been doing a digital sketch everyday with a tablet. I am happy that I will soon have 365 sketches and it is such a landmark look back on all those sketches. In February, I used social media more and ran the first Curls Twitter Contest. Much of March, April and May was spent working on my design career. In June, I was selected to attend the AIGA Leadership Retreat in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It was really exciting and exhausting to go from our AIGA DC AIGA 50 exhibit one evening then catch a flight the next morning to take part in a jam packed weekend full of meeting design professionals from across the country. July was probably the most relaxing month of the year... I still remember working, but we did enjoy ourselves by catching The Dead Weather at 9:30 Club. In August, we premiered the trade paperback Black Magic Tales, Volume 1: The Adventures of Roxy & Dean, World Famous Criminals at Baltimore Comic-Con. Our comic Black Magic Tales: Reunion was published in Washington DC's Comics Newspaper, Magic Bullet. September was a handful! We premiered our first Comic Anthology, Carnival, at SPX and I was interviewed for Washington City Paper. I was also nominated for a Lulu Award in the category of "Kim Yale Award for Most Talented Newcomer." Although I did not win, it was awesome to be recognized for my comics. October kept pounding the punches with a tour date almost every weekend! We went to DC, New York and Pittsburgh. At New York Comic Con, we were interviewed by Derek Gordon and also organized a panel called "The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators." It was fun to see James Franco and M. Night Shyamalan at NYCC. October also included a handful of freelance design and illustration projects including illustrations for National Geographic's Great Migrations. In November I was asked to take part in another panel, this one presented by the Women’s National Book Association. I also got to have fun as a guest blogger for Jimmy Palmiotti's Sexy Monday. As 2010 came to a halt, we took part in two holiday shows. December included a storyline in the Curls Webcomic with Curls receiving a Clive Owen and Keith Urban GPS for christmas. Washington City Paper also asked me to select my favorite Curls comics for the year.

I hope you enjoyed all the activities Curls Studio has done this year. I have received a handful of emails or DMs from people thanking me for my sketches everyday, which is very nice to receive. I hope 2011 is an even more accomplished year as I hope to continue progressing and creating.

Thank you to everyone who ever smiled at a Curls Webcomic, reposted any of our work online, told a friend about us, purchased any of our products, came by our table to say hi or supported us in other ways. We truly appreciate all of the recognition and enjoyment.

Curls Studio loves making people happy. Happy 2011 to everyone.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Curls for Comic Creator's Alliance 2011

In January, I'll be taking part in a fundraiser event called the Comic Creators Alliance: Fighting Together to End Human Trafficking. Last year 87 comic creators united to create one desktop wallpaper image featuring all their different characters, and together raised $10,000 for the purpose of fighting Human Trafficking! I've been asked to take part this year, so I'll be adding Curls to the wallpaper along side everyone else.

This year, instead of doing full body shots (last year's Curls contribution to CCA), we're going to be drawing busts "Brady Bunch" style. The wallpaper will feature all creator-owned female characters with the characters looking around at one of the other squares, or making a silly face. My contribution of Curls is above!

What is Human Trafficking? Human Trafficking is a sanitized term for slavery. There are over 27 million people enslaved in the world today, and most if it is young girls being sold into forced prostitution--both over seas and yes, in the United States. In the United States there are only 39 beds at facilities for victims in the entire nation--and at least 16,000 people being trafficked into the US from other countries each year! Not to count the domestic victims already living here.

The money that the CCA raised last year was split between two organizations, one global--Love 146, and a local shelter trying to get up and running--Gracehaven in Ohio. (Toledo, Ohio is one of the largest trafficking hubs in the U.S.) Both organizations were able to expand their particular fights against this heinous problem in 2010. Love 146 is setting up Task Forces around America, local groups of concerned citizens bringing the fight and awareness to their own corners of the nation. Internationally, Love 146 set up the Cambodia Border Officers Project . This is total prevention: officers patrol the border crossing, looking for possible victims and the kids they rescue will never know the horrors they might have. Gracehaven used our funds in the ongoing renovations that are necessary to bring the house up to code--plumbing and air conditioning were installed, along with two new bathrooms. They hope to be up and running soon but must first have six months of operating expenses in the bank. They are currently at one fifth of their goal--let's see what we can do to help them!

If you're a creator and would like to participate, the deadline for contributions is December 31st, 2010. Email to be added to the list. And the Donations Drive goes live January 11th on National Human Trafficking Awareness Day and will last for two weeks. See you then!

Washington City Paper: The Year 2010 in Cartoons

Mike Rhode posted his "Year in Cartoons" for Washington City Paper. He writes:

Other papers may pick what they think were the best cartoons of the year. Here at the City Paper, we're doing it differently. We've asked some local cartoonists to pick their favorite piece that they made over the past year and share it with us.

David Hagen, Steven Artley, Michael Cavna, Donna Lewis, Carolyn Belefski, Nick Galifianakis, Kevin 'Kal' Kallagher, Ann Telnaes, Molly Lawless, Matt Dembicki, Joe Sutliff, Richard Thompson and Matt Wuerker are all featured.

Read the full article here:

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Washington Post: Vote Best Comics of 2010

Hello True Believers of Curls Studio,

The Washington Post (Comic Riffs) is looking for nominations for their Riffy Awards.

Nominations will be accepted till 11:59 PM on Monday, December 27, 2010. You may send your nominations to Comic Riffs via e-mail (; via Twitter (; via Facebook (; or in the comments on the Post page.

For more info:

Please consider my webcomic Curls for Best Webcomic - and let The Washington Post know!

Thank you and enjoy this holiday season,

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Geek of Oz: 2010 - A Geek Odyssey

Ryan Huff from Sydney, Australia has interviewed Brian Michael Bendis, Deb Aoki, Victor Gischler, Irish Emmet, Carolyn Belefski, Jeff Parker, Christopher "Great" Scott, and Chris Samnee about the year 2010 and what we look forward to in 2011.

Read all the interviews here:

In addition to this interview, I want to point out that my answer for "What would you like to find in your Christmas stocking?" is a current storyline in my Curls Webcomic:

Holiday Greeting Card Illustration

A former co-worker of mine commissioned me to illustrate her family's 2010 Holiday Greeting Card. She provided me with photos of her two cats and one dog to work from.

Here is the process from original small sketch layout and more detailed sketch to inks to colors:

The client and her husband are really excited about the illustration and how their girls were portrayed, which makes me happy because I gave each animal a character and attitude as they have fun together sledding in the snow.

Available for Freelance Work
If you are a creative director, art director or designer interested in my illustration and/or design skills, please email me at

Monday, December 20, 2010

National Geographic: Great Migrations Illustrations

Recently I did freelance illustration and concept art for National Geographic and produced illustrations for their major television event Great Migrations and the show's CafePress merchandise store.

The two concepts they selected for final production are "Animal Prints" and "Turtle" and they are now available for purchase as Shirts, Ceramic Travel Mugs, Sigg Water Bottles, Messenger Bags, Mousepads, Gaiam Yoga Mats and more!

Above are some of the concept sketches I did that never made it to final, but I'm sharing with you because I'd like to invite you in on my process. I merged them all on a one-sheet for web viewing.

This project was very fun and freeing and I hope to do more work like this. Plus it feels good to know I did original illustrations for National Geographic.

Available for Freelance Work
If you are are creative director, art director or designer interested in my illustration and/or design skills, please email me at

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators

Last October, Astray Productions filmed our panel at New York Comic Con. We now present to you full footage and audio of the panel...

The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators
Date: Friday, October 8, 2010
Time: 11:15 am - 12:15 pm
Location: Room 1A21, Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York City

Creating your product is only half the work it takes to succeed in the comics industry. What about the other half that we don't see as clearly after the product is released to the world? This panel will explore what it is like to be on the other side of the table, as a creator. We will discuss what it takes to exhibit at conventions, promote yourself, and gain a loyal audience - from the POV of professionals already behind the table. Join creators Jimmy Palmiotti (Painkiller Jane, Jonah Hex, The Pro), Raina Telgemeier (Smile, The Baby-Sitters Club), Bryan J.L. Glass (The Mice Templar, Thor: First Thunder) Carla Speed McNeil (Finder) and Carolyn Belefski (Curls, The Legettes) in this conversation, moderated by Joe Carabeo.


NYCC Blog Recap:

Connect: Continue the conversation by joining "The Other Side of the Table" Facebook page

Below is part 1 of 7 and all the parts link to each other on YouTube. I hope you enjoy the panel!

Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:
Part 4:
Part 5:
Part 6:
Part 7:

Special thanks to Dave Sim, who provided us with a copy of Ultimate Cerebus Guide To Self-Publishing to give to one lucky audience member.

Thank You: Jimmy Palmiotti, Raina Telgemeier, Bryan, J.L. Glass, Carla Speed McNeil, Carolyn Belefski, Joe Carabeo, Brian Sarvis, Dave Sim, New York Comic Con, Kim Mueller, Larry Settembrini, Mark Fitch, Tatyana Schum, Radial Outdoor Media, Astray Productions, VCR

Monday, December 6, 2010

Last Show of 2010: Rock-n-Shop

Hunting for that perfect holiday gift? Looking to augment your hardcore collection with some essential records? Searching for the perfect T-shirt? Stop right there, my friend! Rock-n-Shop is where it's all at. This annual junk sale offers more than the standard fare... for one thing, it's not all junk...

Blast out of 2010 and join Curls Studio at our last show of the year!

We will be at Rock-n-Shop at 8PM on Sunday, December, 19th at the Black Cat with our very own black cat, Black Magic.

A Rock and Roll Garage Sale
FREE on the Mainstage
Sunday, December, 19th
Doors at 8:00PM

Black Cat
1811 14th Street, NW
(between N S St & N Swann St)
Washington, DC 20009

Exhibitors (as of December 6)
60 Bugs, Ana Haworth, Anhtu Lu, Fire Studio, Tigerflight, Wrong Tree Studio, Carlos Izurieta, Curls Studio, Charlene Lockwood, David Ballinger, David Conroy, Eileen Colton, Erin Boland, Erin McCarley, Gene Melkisethian, El Jefe Design, Dau Dau, Fisticuffs, Red Onion Records, Junk Science, Kenieffer Vargas, Kitten Rocks Well, Lara Watson, Les Talusan, Meaghan O’Malley, Pretty Little Fings, Gosh Darn Knit, Shawn Sprague, Som Records, Smash Records, Kathy Newton

Poster Credit
The rad 2010 Rock-n-Shop poster is six-color combination of silkscreen and woodcut by Anthony Dihle of Fire Studio.

December 15 - UPDATE: Above is a map Black Cat provided the vendors. Curls Studio will be located near the center of the bar at table number 8. Hope to see you this Sunday.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Recap and Film: In Between the Panels

On November 17, the Women’s National Book Association, DC Chapter sponsored "In Between the Panels: DC’s Emergence on the Graphic Novel Scene" – a discussion on the Washington, DC area graphic novel scene. The panel included Carolyn Belefski (myself), Molly Lawless, Matt Dembicki, and Mike Rhode.

Comicsgirl and DC Cultural Events Examiner are media that I know covered the event. In addition, Astray Productions graciously filmed the full panel and posted it on YouTube. Below is part 1 of 6 and all the parts link to each other on YouTube.

Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:
Part 4:
Part 5:
Part 6:

I had a great time discussing comics that evening and we had a crowd size better than most expected. The audience was able to purchase books after the panel and I got to meet a handful of new people after the event. "Black Magic Tales, Volume 1: The Adventures of Roxy and Dean, World Famous Criminals" was my the top seller at this event. One guy in particular came up to me, but I got pulled away into another conversation, so I missed out on talking to him... so if you are that guy, please email your question to me at I apologize for not being able to finish our conversation.

The event was wonderful because we got to educate the general public more about comics and what goes into creating them. I hope a lot of people walked away with a fuller view of comics as a storytelling medium.

Monday, November 29, 2010

NYCC 2010 Interview from Derek Gordon

Check out this video from Derek Gordon's interview with Curls Studio at the 2010 New York Comic Con.

Interview with Curls Studio founders, writers, artists and publishers Carolyn Belefski and Joe Carabeo as they discuss they're unique titles and characters, inspirations, artistic philosophies and....wrestling promo???

Interview with Curls Studio at NY Comic Con - Oct. 2010 from A2Opinion on Vimeo.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Wrapping Up 2010 and Holiday Heist Map

Curls Studio has been having a busy 2010. This past Wednesday, "In Between the Panels: DC’s Emergence on the Graphic Novel Scene" was held at Busboy and Poets, sponsored by the Women’s National Book Association. The panel was filmed by Astray Productions and will be posted soon. In addition, we are also planning on posting film and audio from our panel "The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators" which took place earlier this year at New York Comic Con.

Check out this coverage from "In Between the Panels: DC’s Emergence on the Graphic Novel Scene" from Comicsgirl. I will also be posting a blog recap with a few photos when we get the film footage ready. Until then you can join us this Sunday for Holiday Heist!

We even have a handy vendor map for you. And if I can find it quickly in storage I just might be wearing a Santa hat, like Curls in this map. See you at Holiday Heist and if you have any suggestions or recommendations for 2011 tour stops, please let us know. Thanks.

Holiday Heist
Sunday, November 21, 2010 -- 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
The Soundry
316 Dominion Road
Vienna, VA 22180

Thursday, November 11, 2010


I was interviewed by Anthony Letizia of ALTERNA-TV.COM after Pittsburgh Indy Comics Expo 2010 about Webcomics, Webseries, TV and New Media.

Here is a sample:

Carolyn Belefski was an attendee at the PIX Indy Comics Expo and had a broad collection of her work on display, including traditional comic book-style creations as Black Magic Tales and The Legettes. A finalist for the Kim Yale Award for Most Talented Newcomer in the 2010 Lulu Awards, Belefski is also a webcomics practitioner, having taken the comic strip Curls, which she created for the Virginia Commonwealth University school newspaper, onto the Internet shortly after graduation. In many ways she exemplifies the independent spirit and opportunity that the melding of traditional comics and the new webcomic medium represents, and her insights correlate to the webseries just as much as webcomics.

“The Internet allows people to create their own opportunities,” she explains of her decision to utilize the web for her work. “It seems easier to build a fan base now than in the past, especially globally. With webcomics, anyone with access to an Internet connection can read your material. Before the Internet, you’d have to be a published author or artist, usually in the print medium. With the door open (and some motivation) you can publish yourself at a relatively low cost.”

The same can obviously be said of the television industry with its Hollywood insider mentality. The advent of the webseries, coupled with the dropping cost of the equipment needed to film, has opened doors for creative types interested in the television medium who had no previous chance of breaking into the business. The structural difference between television and the webseries, meanwhile—most webseries episodes are significantly shorter than what can be found on the networks—is partially due to the changing nature of the entertainment needs of a more web-savvy audience, just like webcomics.

“Webcomics provide people with quick entertainment and characters they can follow along with,” Belefski explained. “In this era of new media, audiences recognize and support stories that they are interested in. I also think we are living in a time of selective media. People have more choices and avenues to digest how they want their time to be spent on the Internet, therefore traditional media is being pushed aside in favor of fresh webcomics.”

Read the complete "Webcomic Insights for Webseries Practitioners" article here:

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Holiday Heist 2010

Curls Studio has been accepted to exhibit at Holiday Heist at The Soundry in Vienna, Virginia on Sunday, November 21. The event is sponsored by the DC Craft Mafia. The Soundry has been converted from a auto hobby shop into a coffee shop and art gallery. It serves as studio space for artists and musicians and is the perfect place for cozy holiday craft shopping.

This year's show features awesome handmade arts and crafts by 25 selected local crafters and Craft Mafia members. Please join us and find some great gifts to give this holiday season. Admission is free.

Holiday Heist
Sunday, November 21, 2010 -- 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
The Soundry
316 Dominion Road
Vienna, VA 22180

Monday, November 8, 2010

AIGA DC - When Lightning Strikes!

AIGA DC is asking people to submit 10 images of inspiration. I have decided to share my submission with you. I have a folder on my computer called "Imagery" and whenever I am having an uncooperative day, I take a moment to recharge by looking at these visuals that inspire me to create.

I am inspired by...

Goats in Trees.

Magic and Criss Angel who teaches me you can do anything you set your mind to.

Meeting Jeff Smith at my first SPX as a volunteer. At this moment, I knew I wanted to take my comics to a higher level.

Burlesque and The Pontani Sisters. Circus performers and sideshow entertainers.

This Fish.


Working hard.

Creating iconic characters and allowing people to have fun.

Taking over the world.

Saving the world and believing in love.

Now what are you inspired by? Let AIGA DC know by submitting your 10 images and coming to When Lightning Strikes! on November 15, 2010.

Help kick off DC Design Week by submitting images of whatever makes you tick, creatively. We're asking you to get your creative juices flowing and show the world what inspires you. It could be a butterfly, things shaped like hearts, the National Cathedral, a big jet airplane... it doesn't matter what, who, or why—we want to see it!

There will be a show-and-tell slideshow presented by noted creatives including Pat Taylor, Antonio Alcalá, Philippa Hughes, John Foster, Judy Kirpich, Ethel Kessler, Carolyn Sewell, Terry Wilson, Richard Brandenburg, and Sam Shelton as special guest MC.

Submission details:

• Submissions should be JPGs with a brief description (25 words or less)
• Send all entries and questions to
• Include in your email: your NAME and title of your submission
• Maximum one submission per person, 10 images per submission
• Submission should be no more than 10 megabytes
• Deadline for submissions is November 10th, 2010

This is not a competition. It's inspiration!

When Lightning Strikes!
Monday, November 15, 2010
6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
RFD – Regional Food and Drink
810 7th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001

This is a free event! Limited street parking may be available in the area. Metro access is via the green, yellow, and red lines at the Gallery Place-Chinatown station, just across 7th street (northern exit).

Special thanks to RFD (Regional Food and Drink) for generously providing the space for this event.

Guest Blogger for Jimmy Palmiotti's SEXY MONDAY

Today I did a take-over of Jimmy Palmiotti's SEXY MONDAY feature on his blog. For those of you who do not know, Jimmy has written the comic books Jonah Hex, The Pro and Power Girl... just to name a few. Every Monday he has been posting photos of sexy women in a feature called SEXY MONDAY.

Today was the day the ladies got to have some fun with SEXY MONDAY for the first time and I got to select some imagery for the gals. I hope you enjoy it. If I could add one more photo, it would be of Criss Angel, but I will save that for my next blog post.

Check out today's SEXY MONDAY:

Please comment on Jimmy's blog and let us know which photo is the sexiest. Thanks in advance.


thanks Carolyn...everyone, I think she did a great job... thats me and Carolyn [ above] from the NYCCC...check out her link and her work. A real special lady in so many ways...and so cool...we need more like her.


PS: NEXT WEEK...Sexy monday 50.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

NOV 17 Comics Panel at Busboys and Poets, 5th & K Streets

Hi everyone! I was asked to be on a panel and now I'm asking you to join me. Please pass this on on anyone you think would be interested. Did I mention - it's FREE to attend. ALL are invited to...

In Between the Panels: DC’s Emergence on the Graphic Novel Scene
Wednesday, November, 17, 2010, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Busboys and Poets, 5th & K Streets, Washington, DC
Cost: FREE and open to the public!

The Women’s National Book Association, DC Chapter will sponsor a panel discussion on the DC graphic novel scene. The panel for the event, to be held at Busboys & Poets in Mount Vernon, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., will include Carolyn Belefski, Molly Lawless, Matt Dembicki, and Mike Rhode. The event is free and open to the public.

Carolyn Belefski is the mastermind behind the web comic Curls. She is also one of the creators of several other comic books: Kid Roxy, Black Magic Tales, and The Legettes, and an indefatigable (nightly) poster to her blog, Sketch Before Sleep. Her work has appeared in USA WEEKEND Magazine, The Commonwealth Times, Virginia Living Magazine, Magic Bullet, CROQ Zine, and The Pulse on Ms. Belefski is a nominee for the Kim Yale Award for Most Talented Newcomer for 2010.

Matt Dembicki is a DC-based cartoonist whose work includes the award-winning nature parable Mr. Big, The Great White Shark Story, Xoc, and The Brewmaster’s Castle, about legendary DC brewer Christian Heurich. His latest anthology, Trickster: Native American Tales: A Graphic Collection, has received rave reviews from Booklist, Publishers Weekly and School Library Journal and has been nominated as one of the Young Adult Library Services Association’s 2011 Great Graphic Novels for Teens. In addition to his own work, Dembicki also hosts kids’ workshops in the DC area and beyond on making comic books.

Molly Lawless, a Boston native, moved to the DC area in 2005. She has self-published mini comics as well as a compilation, Infandum! Ad Infinitum. She is currently working on a full-length graphic novel for McFarland Publishing titled Hit by Pitch. She is an avid blogger and includes stories about her family in her daily posts.

Mike Rhode, panel moderator, is co-author of the comics research bibliography, editor of Exhibition and Media Reviews for the International Journal of Comic Art, and a contributing writer for Hogan’s Alley. In 2008, he was named Best (Comics) Art Blogger by the Washington City Paper for his Comics DC blog. Rhodes edited Harvey Pekar: Conversations, a book of interviews with the late underground comic book writer and author of American Splendor published by the University Press of Mississippi. He has written for the Comics Journal and was selected as an RFK Journalism Awards judge for the editorial cartoon division of Comics Journal in 2009 and 2010. Rhodes currently writes about comics for the City Paper.

This event is FREE and open to the public!

Recap: Wonder Woman Day 2010

Super Hero Weekend featuring Wonder Woman Day was held on October 23-24th, 2010 at Comic Fusion in Flemington, New Jersey. I donated a Wonder Woman sketch to their auction which benefited SAFE in Hunterdon, a non-profit agency serving victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. You can read about my art in this previous blog entry.

My art for Wonder Woman Day was selected to be used on volunteer and staff shirts at Comic Fusion.

Comic Fusion raised over $16,000 for the shelter!

Jill Pantozzi wrote about attending Wonder Woman Day in her blog, Has Boobs, Reads Comics, which includes photos.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Recap: DC Counter Culture Festival 2010

Last Sunday Curls Studio exhibited at the fifth annual DC Counter Culture Festival. This year RFD in Chinatown was a new venue to us. Previous incarnations of the Fest were at the now defunct Dr. Dremo's and The Soundry. I think DC Conspiracy wanted a venue that was metro accessible this year.

The Fest was a good time because we got to catch up with local creators while selling comics and eating cheese fries. There were also DJs, a sideshow performer (Mab, Just Mab) and a bellydancer (Eugenia).

I got to participate in my first Super Art Fight, which was super fun! You can watch the bout Joe filmed above of Jamie Noguchi vs myself. The match MC is Rosscott, who happens to also be the winner of my Curls Twitter Contest I ran last February. I met him for the first time last month at Crafty Bastards and he is very active in the DC area art scene and teaches at American University.

If you are interested in Super Art Fight, check out their FREE next show this Tuesday, November 2nd.

Thanks to everyone who came to DC Counter Culture Festival 2010. Thanks to DC Conspiracy for organizing this event.


You can see more photos of Curls Studio at DC Counter Culture Festival 2010 on our Facebook Fan Page. Click "like" to get our updates on Facebook. Thank you.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Carabeo Interview with Washington City Paper

Mike Rhode posted his interview (Meet a Local Comic Book Writer: A Chat with Joe Carabeo) last week for Washington City Paper. Here is a sample of the interview followed by a link to the full interview.

Washington City Paper: What type of comic work or cartooning do you do?

Joe Carabeo: At this point in my comic book career, I’m focusing mainly on writing and character creation for Curls Studio.

WCP: Who are your influences?

JC: If I can name a few writers that I have influenced me the most just as a writer, I would have to say Billy Wilder, Joss Whedon and Rod Serling.

Billy Wilder’s razor sharp dialogue, his use of environments, and the importance of objects to motivate and push the story is something to this day that I don’t see storytellers fully capitalize on, and it’s a device I try to fully utilize in all the tales that I spin. To me, there’s more to writing than just people talking and running. We have objects that we can touch, that make sounds, they can even tell time and reveal memories. The ideas are endless for their use in storytelling.

I grew up on an extreme healthy dose of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and The Twilight Zone. I feel that when it comes to creating a world and characters that you’d want to follow to the end of time, Joss Whedon has been my biggest influence. The TV work that he did almost became a lifestyle. I felt that the audience grew with his characters, as viewers invested time and the characters became introduced into their daily lives. The characters that he created became friends to the audience, and people to this day still want them around. His work resonated that strongly with its audience because of how rich they were, and that is something I have always thrived to achieve with whatever I create. Something that people really love.

The influence that Rod Serling and his Twilight Zone TV show had on me is pretty unbelievable. I could go on a massive long tangent on this subject, but simply, the Twilight Zone is in my blood — it was one of the first shows that I even remember watching. There is so much I’ve learned from it. It’s always been to me a show that truly had no rules and if it ever did, it creatively broke them. The show was the best commentary on life ever, and the fact that Serling was never afraid to have the stories and characters on the Twilight Zone go astray has always been influential to everything I create.

WCP: What work are you most proud of?

JC: In the comic world, I’m proud of the characters that I have created with Carolyn Belefski for Curls Studio. They are all definitely not what they seem and I think the readers will find that with the more they follow the comics’ journeys, and I’m really excited about that. I believe we’re really getting a hold on who these characters really are and I’m proud that we’re at that point.

Continue to read the full interview here:

Friday, October 22, 2010

Recap: Pittsburgh Indy Comics Expo 2010

Last weekend Curls Studio journeyed to Pittsburgh for the first-ever PIX: Pittsburgh Indy Comics Expo. Going into the show I had no expectations because I knew the show was brand new and it was to be held at the top floor of an unheated storage facility. I found out about the show because I was handed a flyer at SPX about exhibiting and the table costs were very reasonable. We decided to go to Pittsburgh to sell our wonderful comics and establish a broader audience up north.

Similar to our trip to New York Comic Con the weekend before, we left around 3 AM and drove straight to the event, which started at 10 AM. Since there was only one elevator, exhibitors were encouraged to arrive early for set-up. I was prepared for the cold, but the temperature seemed just fine for me so having the facility unheated was not a problem anytime during the weekend.

We did really well at PIX and met some great people. In addition, we met some really nice Pittsburgh artists. Sunday sales were very close to Saturday sales, which is amazing because usually Sundays are slower. In fact, I might have actually liked Sunday better than Saturday because I was more relaxed.

Another cool thing about PIX was the ability to access a power outlet... and around Joe that can be adventurous! He set up Christmas lights around the rim of our table. It was nice to be able to add some electricity to our display for the first time.

On Saturday night, PIX hosted an exhibitor party at Brillobox. I really enjoyed being able to attend this party. The food was amazing. THE BEST PIEROGIES EVER. Having this party is a wonderful addition to the event. Someone mentioned "SPX has the chocolate fountain and PIX has pierogies." I like going to cons for food!

Panels were organized at the last minute and I attend part of the Sunday panel. I do not think many people knew about the panels, so they ended up merging all the Sunday panels into one hour. In the future this is something that can be organized and I understand it is a whole new thing to put on PIX. I really enjoyed the panel and it was worth going to.

I can certainly see PIX growing and becoming a larger show in the future. The venue turned out to be very awesome and spacious. I think there even could be room for more tables around the rim. My only advice would be to promote the panels in advance and post them on the website, make a table map so people can locate the tables they are looking for, and provide name tags for the exhibitors because people might only know of a name and not how a person looks like.

At the end of the event, I heard a rumor of PIX being a one-day show next year. I do not mind the two-day show and I think I got more out of the Sunday show because I was able to walk around and talk to other creators plus attend the panel, so that was fun. I hope to be back at PIX next year, whether it is a one or two day show... I think I prefer two-day, but I'd like to exhibit at PIX again either way.

Pittsburgh was rad. Thanks to Bill Boichel for organizing this event.


You can see more photos of Curls Studio at PIX on our Facebook Fan Page. Click "like" to get our updates on Facebook. Thanks in advance for joining up!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Recap: New York Comic Con 2010

Even though New York Comic Con happened a week and a half ago, I am still in recovery from running around and also exhibiting at Pittsburgh Indy Comics Expo this past weekend. If I was to use one word to describe NYCC 2010 it would be: MASSIVE. This year's show felt much larger and the crowds were excited to discover new things and dress up. There were so many people in costumes! Overall, we had an amazing time. I would describe NYCC as Times Square for comics and pop culture in terms of sensory overload. I will break down this blog entry into each of the three days below.

Friday, October 8, 2010
We started our Friday by driving up around 3 AM. We were already running on very little sleep and the only thing to keep us going was the energy of the show. Joe drove and we also brought along Brian Sarvis for the trip. It was great to have Brian because it was his first time in New York and he assisted us each day of the convention. Once we got into the city, the first thing on our agenda was to park, get our materials into the convention, obtain badges and set-up the table in time for our panel, the first event in room 1A21. This required a lot of rushing around and getting things together very early in the morning and running on the convention high. While I was getting the table together, Joe and Brian were busy getting A/V ready for the panel.

At 11:15 AM, our panel "The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators" started. Joe and Brian hooked up the camera to project into a large screen for the audience to see. We had a excellent crowd turnout for early Friday morning during professional hours (the convention opened to the public at 1:00 PM). I felt like our panel provided encouragement and amazing stories from the panelists: Jimmy Palmiotti (Painkiller Jane, Jonah Hex, The Pro), Raina Telgemeier (Smile, The Baby-Sitters Club), Bryan J.L. Glass (The Mice Templar, Thor: First Thunder) Carla Speed McNeil (Finder) and myself - Carolyn Belefski (Curls, The Legettes). Many of the audience members found the Curls Studio table later during the con to thank me, introduce themselves and say they enjoyed the panel. A couple people even showed me their portfolios. The panelists had a fun time as well and I'm glad we were able to have a panel and kick-off NYCC. Even though it was Friday morning, I'd rather have it be then than compete against M. Night Shyamalan! Everything really worked out well and we will be posting film and audio from the panel soon, so pay attention to this blog!

Join up at "The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators" Facebook page to continue the conversation:

Another really cool thing about the panel was the opportunity to give away a book donated by Dave Sim, "Ultimate Cerebus Guide to Self-Publishing." The book was signed by Dave Sim along with all of the panelists. It was very hard to give away the book because all of a sudden we were flagged for one minute left from a NYCC volunteer and then had to wrap everything up quickly. I wanted to make sure the book went to someone who asked a question, so we made that happen and I hope that one lucky audience member enjoys his book. I wanted to get a photo of him with the book, but things were coming to a close as we had to leave the room. Brian said he caught the winner on camera though, so that is good. Special thanks goes out to Dave Sim for the book. It really is an amazing guide, yet it is important to find out what works for you. I purchased a copy of the book for myself several months ago and treasure that book.

On Friday I was also visited by Nick DeStefano, who is in Carnival Anthology, and Stacy from Comic Fusion, who picked up my original art for Wonder Woman Day 2010. On Friday evening, Joe, Brian and I attended the Riese Web Series panel and got to see Allison Mack, who plays Chloe from Smallville. Joe and I recorded an episode of our podcast all about meeting her. It is already getting a lot of action today from Allison Mack fans on Twitter. You can take a listen here. We also attended the Spotlight on James Marsters event and he sang to the audience.

Saturday, October 9, 2010
The foot traffic on Saturday was out of this world. I stayed at the table most of the day, but left to attend the "Your Highness" panel which featured James Franco and Danny McBride. It was awesome to see James Franco because Freaks and Geeks is my favorite TV show and seeing him made me one step closer to the Apatow Circle. At the table, I met some really amazing people and a lot of people were excited to discover The Legettes. On Saturday night we hunted down authentic brick oven pizza and showed Brian Times Square and the theater district. Later we checked out the NYCC Indy After Party, hosted by Dave Ryan, which featured a performance by Gordon Gano & The Ryans (singer/songwriter of the Violent Femmes). We hung out with Andrew Pepoy, who I recently met at Baltimore a few months ago.

Sunday, October 10, 2010
Joe and I split table duties on Sunday as I saw M. Night Shyamalan and Joe saw Bruce Campbell. MTV hosted a discussion with M. Night about the 10th anniversary of his film, Unbreakable. They played the soundtrack before the discussion started, which provided and eerie tone to the theater. I enjoyed this program the most from NYCC because Night is so smart and I enjoyed when he left the stage and got close to the audience to showcase his storyboards on the large screens. I also won a signed Unbreakable movie poster... which is amazing. M. Night rules. Joe filmed the full Bruce Campbell event in seven parts, which you can enjoy on his Astray Productions YouTube account. Please post a comment if you like it. Sunday ended with a mad rush as everyone exited the Javits Center. We went to eat in Brooklyn with a friend and spotted the orange Conan blimp!

Thank you!
NYCC was such a blast. I enjoyed being able to attend the convention as a panelist, organizer, fan and creator. I am glad to have met a whole bunch of new faces this year. Our business cards were eaten by NYCC and our mailing list grew. Thanks to everyone who went to "The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators" panel and all those who stopped by the Curls Studio table. We really appreciate all the moments we got to spend with you.


You can see more photos of Curls Studio at NYCC 2010 on our Facebook Fan Page. Jimmy has super white teeth - glowing like Jon Bon Jovi. See for yourself.

June 7, 2011 - UPDATE: I figured it would be a good idea to provide links to our "The Other Side of the Table: Lessons from Creators" panel. You can find the recap, audio and video of the panel here: