"Wives" is a short story written by Darcie Little Badger. It was written for the Kickstarted project, Deer Woman, an anthology that brings together Indigenous women's stories, artwork, and forms of resistance.
I illustrated the 10-page, full-colour comic over a span of 4 weeks. Darcie's story focuses on the relationship between two Lipan Apache wives, a cis-woman, and a trans-woman, and how an average day may go for them. As illustrator, I wanted to capture the small and intimate moments between people. Not all their experiences can be positive, and this took shape through the arrows that accumulate on the two wives' bodies. At the end of the day, it's the small and intimate moments that bring them back together. They heal each other, eat dinner together, make jokes together, and help others together.
It was an honour to work on this project! You can see a snapshot of one of the pages on the left. Cora (left) and Gabrielle (right) high-five each other after a long, difficult day at work.
"Just Another Naming Ceremony"
"Just Another Naming Ceremony" is a short story written by Gwen Westerman. I illustrated and adapted the story into an 8-page full-colour comic for the anthology, Sovereign Traces, published by Michigan State University Press.
I experimented with style and form in this comic in order to convey the surreal narcissism and manipulation of the lead character in the story. One of my favourite parts about my work on this comic was integrating Dakota and Indigenous art by contemporary artists. The earrings in this snapshot, for example, are creations by Dyani White Hawk! You can see her work here: https://www.cetanska.com/ .
"Dedicated to Ati"
Comics are often a way to touch upon personal and intimate stories. I think one of the most powerful aspects of comics as a medium is that even these personal stories are ones that many people can relate to.
I talk openly about mental health and am an advocate for awareness and support for people struggling with mental illness. The comic on the left, titled "Dedicated to Ati" is for and about my aunt's struggle with depression. Both my aunt and I have talked openly about our depression and I wanted to make something for her and for others to show that we're not alone in these fights.
You can read the full comic here: Dedicated to Ati.