D6 Local Comics Creation

Archie Birch - ToonZA


This coming Saturday (3 December) District 6 Homecoming Centre in collaboration with AMAK (Azania Mania Art Kolektive) will be hosting a comic art workshop. All are invited to participate. If you are a comic artist, writer, or just slightly curios, join!  The workshop will be exploring the past and the potential for future narratives, with D6 as focal hub for creative inspiration. It's the latest AMAK creative project and it's called D6 ToonZa. In the words of the organisers, here's some more info:

Q: What's D6 ToonZa?

A: Targeting young people of all ages who can't stop drawing, D6 ToonZa is a graphic time maching colllaboration between the District 6 Museum and AMAK. We plan to conceptualise, make, launch, promote, and distribute a comic anthology set In A World Not Too Far From Now. . . a collection of stories exploring the epic multilayered sag of District Six And The Deep Memory of Place. 

Q: A world not too far from Now? Like when, then? 

A: It's a graphic time machine: forwards or backwards in time, into alternate realities or parallel lives, exploring alien worlds or alienation in this world, with only one proviso: that our stories connect somehow - either time-wise, place-wise or concept-wise -with District 6 and the deep Memory of place.

Q: The deep memory of place?

A: Imagine a scrawny urban milkwood tree that stood in a vacant lot for a century or more, from before you were born until an unknown future. Imagine you got access to that tree's stories, past and future, and told them. That's just an example. Places have memories - accessing them is the fun part. 

Q: And then what? 

A: This workshop will introduce and test-drive our 2017 D6 ToonZA Saturday Sessions concept - to recruit participants and raise funds for a year-long weekly comics workshop to be held at the Homecoming centre. 

Q: Who can attend? 

A: Like we said, it's for young people of all ages who can't stop drawing: designed for people who already draw or write their own comics - or want to. It's a full-on non-stop immersion into our new ToonZa comiclab process, with lots of drawing, learning, talking, presenting - all to be documented in an ongoing stop-motion YouTube animation. 

Q: Yeah, right, OK. But what's the point of it all? 

A: Our immediate aim is to co-learn comics skills the ToonZa way, to produce original work, have an exhibition and launch our new comic book at Open Book Comics Fest in September 2017 - and get the ToonZa Saturday sessions up and running. Long-term? A montly local comics magazine, of course! 

Q: Sounds awesome - How do I sign up? 

A: Just RSVP by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or go to the ToonZa Facebook page for more info. 

Last Updated on Saturday, 07 January 2017 08:56

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Salsa Invertebraxa

Salsa Invertebraxa by Mozchops, Centip & Queen Centipette

Concept Illustrator and artist, Mozchops has brought a phenomenal and beautiful world to life in his graphic novel, Salsa Invertebraxa. It's available in hardcover through Amazon and will also be serialised in six installments in Heavy Metal, specifically selected by Grant Morrison for its uniqueness. Set in the imaginary world of insects, Salsa Invertebraxa tells the tale of two friends that disturb the delicate balance of their world by harvesting the eggs of the so-called super predator insects. The novel is exquisitely rendered with a fine eye for realistic detail. Mozchops sparks the imagination with this highly original and visually innovative story. It can only be defined as an inspiration to the comic art world. With a certain degree of whimsy, veering from the fantastical to the dark, Mozchops transports the reader to a world highly alien, though known, and makes us wonder at the intimate existence of the minute. Exposing us to the possibility of the secret lives of insects. Taking him over 15 years to complete, Salsa Ivertebraxa consists of 200 delicately crafted digital paintings. 

 Salsa Invertebraxa by Mozchops - Ambush II

Salsa Invertebraxa by Mozchops - Ambush 

Salsa Invertebraxa by Mozchops - Flight

Last Updated on Tuesday, 29 November 2016 14:32

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Benjamin Marra's Underground aesthetic

Terror Assaulter O.M.W.O.T (One man War On Terror) by Benjamin Marra.


Benjamin Marra is known for his grunge, punk and above of underground comics stylistics. He has a passion for comics, asked if he'd like to do anything else otherwise artistically, he answered in one interview: "Not really, perhaps some big paintings" and that's about it. He's always drawn comics since a child and is still drawing comics as an adult. Predominantly self-taught, he brings his often off-kilter, sometimes offensive, but above all satirical vision to life through sequential art. For the most part, Benjamin Marra's stories are self-published and take the form of black & white comics printed mainly on low-grade paper to give it that underground zine feel. Consequently, he sells his comics for a relatively low price under his own imprint, labelled: Traditional Comics. He comfortably inhabits the alternative comics genre, and his style can only be described as raw, hard-hitting, quirky, gut-level aesthetic. As a American comics artist and illustrator, his stories for the most part around America, crime, drugs, football, race, religion and sex, the kind of stories that he likes to tell. When looking at his work, a realisation occurs that the author comes first and the reader second, and you either jump on board and enjoy the ride, or miss the boat and sit ashore. Here's a link to a Q&A between Benjamin Marra and Linework


Cave of the Tooth by Benjamin Marra

 Racer by Benjamin Marra 

Terror Assaulter by Benjamin Marra, published by Fantagraphics in 2015.

Last Updated on Friday, 11 November 2016 16:32

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Cape Town Comics Journalism

Afrique de Pappa by Hippolyte


The phenomenal independant comics artist and illustrator, Hippolyte, was on a comics journalism residency located in Cape Town in September this year. The residency was hosted in part by the Goethe Institute and French Institute of South Africa. The theme for the project was Migrations, since it carries a lot of relevance with the current refugee crisis of today. The final aim of the project to create a publication that will be available in South Africa, Germany and France. Hippolyte's sketches of the inhabitants of Cape Town is a must see. Check out his viewbook and get a different perspective on the Mother City:

Hippolyte's Cape Town Sketchbook

Last Updated on Monday, 07 November 2016 17:08

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Grant Morrison and Heavy Metal

Heavy Metal #280 cover and Beachhead written by Grant Morrisonn and illustrated by Benjamin Marra.


Grant Morrison has taken on a new job, that of Editor-in-Chief of that hallowed and infamous comics institution, Heavy Metal. As an alternative comics magazine, Heavy Metal could capitalise on the connection with mainstream comics through Morrison. Morrison's aim with Heavy Metal is to showcase variety and a wider range of voices, especially new and upcoming artists with a potentially different take on the sci-fi, fantasy, horror genre. According to Morrison, every page should offer something different, a different style, a different story, a different headspace and Heavy Metal as a comics anthology has the potential to do just that. In the modern age, the notion of the short story, especially as applied to comics has a greater potentialfor relevance again - in that time is short and people's attention spans even shorter these days. Consequently,  the short storyoffers a form of neatly encapsulated entertainment - in its set characters, its working setup and a resolution, all in the space of 6 to 17 pages. Heavy Metal offers its own aesthetic, as an anthology it's aesthetic is defined according to company owned characters as in mainstream comics, it has its own distinct feel, one steered by the editorial vision of Grant Morrison. To hear what Grant Morrison has to say about his new job - have a look at these two links: Morrison on Heavy Metal and Morrison talks about running Heavy Metal.

Last Updated on Sunday, 06 November 2016 19:48

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