Monday, December 31, 2012

Fine Arts Advanced Dimploma

I wanted to post a photo of my College Diploma to Linked In and in order to do that I had to have an image link so here it is if anyone else is interested in seeing it. I'm an edumacated artist. :)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012


There has been a lot of talk on the topic of Bronies lately, and it’s such an interesting topic people don’t seem to know how to react to it. I accept it with open arms mainly because to me it’s showing that the genders are slowly becoming more and more equal and neutral, and things should not be separated as strictly for men or strictly for women. If the writing and art is good why can’t guys think of “My Little Ponies” as an awesome TV show? It seems as though it is more socially accepted for women to like "manly" things, but the first reaction I hear when I mention this topic to people just hearing about this new “brony” phenomenon is, “Are they gay?” Perhaps some are, but even if they are or are not, who cares? They’re not hurting anyone with what they like, are they? Only if they throw a plush of Rainbow Dash at you, I suppose, but even then, they’re harmless. When I was young I used to watch a lot of “Ninja Turtles” and no one really stopped me. I think girls liked to watch it because, well, turtles are cute animals, they may be a bit slimy, but that personally has never stopped me from finding turtles fascinating as creatures. Also, the ninja thing has always made me happy. Not for the violence aspect but mainly for the self-defense part, which I believe every woman should know. I think boys enjoyed it because; well turtles are really cool creatures as stated above, they have shells which are pretty much like built in armor so they don’t easily get hurt. Plus, they’re ninjas who fight robots (in the cartoon version anyways, which I watched a lot as a kid) and what’s not to like there? It was just an over-all cool show…which, if Michael Bay has any say, will be ruined soon enough. Anyways, I used to hang out with some boys after school that my mom would babysit and I also had brothers that I frequently saw so it was inevitable that I came out the way I did I suppose, which is being a very confused girl who is a tomboy that has no problem with acting and dressing girly whenever she wants to. Now, the brony thing doesn’t shock me much like it seems to be doing to everyone else and I’ll tell you why. When I was watching Ninja Turtles with these boys after school, one of the boys who was younger normally watched them with me and we played with the toys and all of that jazz, but his mom one day bought a bunch of little ponies for me to play with. I think she always wanted a daughter and probably felt bad that the boys were “forcing” me to play all these “boyish” games. I loved “My Little Ponies” they were my “girly” toy. It definitely outshone Barbie, which (though she had more jobs then Ken) seemed like a stereotype of a girl that I was supposed to grow up to be but couldn’t bring myself to want to be. Well, that boy who was younger, quickly took possession over the ponies his mom bought, telling me they were his. His mom had intended them to be kept there for me to play with in case I didn’t feel like playing with "G.I. Joes" but he insisted they were his. At first I worried that he would grow up to be “girly” himself, but that was a reaction of being brought up where it’s ok to be a tomboy (as my mom stated she was one when she was little) but the boys in my family were strictly brought up to be men. This seemed to be very ignorant of me. I even thought as a young child that it was wrong to think that way. I let him play with the ponies, after all, why are certain animals mainly a “girly” or “boyish” thing? Horses have been ridden by men and women. Women stereotypically love horses as much as men love cars I suppose, but men have been known to love and ride horses just as much as women have been known to love and drive cars. Look at cowboys and jockeys, I know that “Brokeback Mountain” movie made Westerns now seem “gay” but there are a slew of very cool movies and books on cowboys that are incredibly “manly”. Why can’t people accept the fact that men can like “My Little Ponies” and be perfectly straight? There’s nothing wrong with him watching it and being gay, but I actually, personally know a few gay men who like the original series rather than the new one. One said, and I quote, “The drawing style is freaky and kind of even babyish.” So therefore he refused to watch it. It’s just a new style that I guess can be hard for some people to grasp. The writing is really rather wonderful though and I think the creator of the reboot, Lauren Faust, meant to make the show less boring as a lot of shows directed towards girls have been in the past and that’s why Networks very rarely go for a show meant to be for a female audience. Girls aren’t as into those kind of cartoons and with the ratings so low why bother spending a ton of money into something that won’t generate any money? The show is packed with such colour, and energy, and adventure and excitement, and even some character development so why wouldn’t people watch it? It has everything a show needs to survive. So what does all this have to do with my comic? Well lots, this show (like my comic) has strong, cool, but still flawed characters. Not only that but in a new plot-twist I have written that Tobey becomes a “Brorsey” (which is technically a “Brony” but I had to change the name of the show so that people knew what I was doing but it doesn’t disrupt this fictitious world I have created that’s not too unlike our own). Why can’t Tobey be a “Brony”? He’s has the right characteristics to be one. Someone comfortable enough with himself to like what he wants to and not care what others think of him, even if it does cause Tara to make fun of him. He can easily laugh at himself and shrug things off, which I think is a really strong trait to have that others may confuse for weakness. I love that men are breaking stereotypes just as much as women are, and are blurring the line between what the genders are supposed to be about. Why can’t “Bronies” be accepted with open arms into our society? I, for one, think this is a refreshing change for the better.
Tobey as a pony.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

TBT Books @ Wizard World

Those who know me know I'm a comic artist and those who know me fairly well know that I like going to conventions, those who know me REALLY well know that the first convention I ever attended was Paradise Comicon in 2007 (otherwise known as Wizard World Toronto now) and I was selling the first comic book I ever published called "Dork Girl" there. So now you know me REALLY well I suppose. Anyways, I thought it'd be fitting to go there and launch the publication of my first set of Tom Boy Tara Books...I know! It's about frickin' time! I've been doing it since 2008 and it's now 2012 but I've finally organized myself and put together a set of 4 books each 60 pages long, including 50 comics each and some extra art towards the back. It was fun, yet tiring to do, and I had no life for a while, as I have a day job that's full time so every weekend I had was spent planting myself in a seat and agonizingly putting together a manga-sized book with my comics using a template and fixing them up to make them print-worthy. Seeing as it's an Indy comic I thought it was fitting to use the site Ka-Blam and have an online store for them on Indy Planet to make the independent comic experience more complete. Finally! I'm going to a Comic BOOK Convention to show off my TBT merch AND I finally have books to show! I know, it's a webcomic first, but now that I have books, people at these conventions can actually see what I'm talking about when I try to tell them about my stuff. Oh GLORIOUS DAY! Finally! But wait...I have not yet received my copies of comics to sell, and the Comicon is only a week away...perhaps I'm getting ahead of myself here. Maybe I won't be able to show off my wonderful comics I've been toiling over for months and months only to prepare for this one 2-day show! If that is the case and I AM indeed bookless at the convention, I have a back-up plan. Everyone can still go to my webcomic as usual and if they want to they can purchase the comics on there as they are displayed in my Products section of my site, OR once I receive the comics I plan on putting them in random stores in the Toronto region (details on that to come) which I planned on doing if I had left-over books anyways. Hopefully I get the books on time, as I would love to have them for the con, but if not at least this way I won't be too bummed out. So far though the year of 2012 has been busy but extremely fun! Hope you all come out to see me at Wizard World!

What Is Tom Boy Tara About?

I get asked this question quite frequently and it’s extremely hard for me to explain. My fall-back answer is often, “It’s about a tomboy named Tara…go read it yourself and find out!” or even sometimes, “It’s about the perspective of a tomboy who is now grown up and still remains child-like” which may not be entirely true, it’s just a simple explanation to get people intrigued enough to go check it out. Upon much reflection after creating over 200 comics it is still very hard for me to explain my work. I just do it.

After a lot of thinking about it though I feel it’s possibly even my perception of how our society’s gender roles have become almost a grey area and it’s only the beginning of the confusion we are feeling about who we are as a whole. Even though, I know how to spell the word “tomboy” I split the word up in the title to not only be cute, but to make the word “boy” in tomboy stand out. This part should be obvious as to why and hopefully there be no need to explain myself there.

I’ve even had people approach me and ask why the comic is not just about Tara, meaning, Tobey is just as involved and there have been numerous comics only about Tobey and his problems as well. Agreed, the tomboy part of the title is merely a staple to show gender confusion and how it’s slowly being accepted. Tomboys are not fully accepted by society yet, as there are very few media outlets that glorify them. If anything, the tomboys are the side-kick characters, although more and more these day’s people are beginning to realize that girls are very powerful in mind, body and soul. The worst of it is, every day I see many sensitive men in our world and a lot of them so sensitive that they feel the need to hide their sensitivity because they’re afraid to look or act different than the way a stereotypical man is supposed to be, when in actuality (I feel anyways) those men who have the “balls” to be who they are and openly sensitive are the manliest men of all, and those who lie and cheat and run away from their problems to me aren’t men at all, but merely cowards.

In Western society at least there are still a lot of prejudice and hate, but I’ve noticed a lot more acceptance too of people who are trying to be who they are. I hold those people who are who they are with highest regard and respect. Sometimes being who you are isn’t always going to make you look perfect, you may even look down-right flawed, but you’re real, which in this society (full of make-overs and plastic surgery) is a rarity that needs to be treasured.

Though, it’s not a bad thing to be girly, I know the character Deena is definitely not idolized in a lot of ways, at least not in the beginning of the comic. The main trait of a stereotypical girl is her beauty and her caring-sensitivity, which I have highlighted with Deena’s character. To make her look flawed I gave her a naivety and in some situations an absolute ignorance. She is sweet and will give you chances though for a long time until you really make her mad, which is seldom. She will stand up for what she believes is right and has an almost innocence to her which sort of makes her look like a Saint next to Tara sometimes.

All girls just like all men, are unique in more ways than one, whether it’s in looks, personality, their goals in life, etc. We need to except and recognize that our differences make us amazing beings. Instead of shunning those who are different, we need to embrace it. Our society that seems to be reaching a state of evolution still is archaic in a sense, but it is getting there slowly. There will always be those who will never understand why we want to be who we are, but we need those challenging people in life unfortunately to realize how blessed we are to find another person who understands our individuality.