Five Feminist Cartoonists You Should Know About
I say ‘feminist’ up there, I’m not sure that’s how all these artists would define themselves, but if you are a feminist or even have an interest in gender I think you may find a lot to love in their work. To be honest I’m not even sure they’d all call themselves cartoonists either… You may well have heard of them before, but if not, you’re in for a treat.
1) Ellen Forney
I picked up I Love Led Zeppelin after Forney was mentioned in Trina Robbins’ fantastic book From Girls to Grrrlz. It would have been worth it just for the fantastic ‘how to’ series, which include: how to re-attach an amputated finger, how to dominate someone, how to talk to your kids about drugs. But there’s lots of good stuff here (especially if you like your stuff on the queer side) and I love Forney’s warm, clear lines.
2) Kate Beaton
Creator of the sublime Hark! A Vagrant. Lovely sketchy style and irreverent, affectionate, feminist comics about famous figures from literature and history including personal favourites Queen Elizabeth I and the Brontes.
3) Kate Leth
Works in a comic book shop, is awesome. Cartoonifies episodes from her life and renders them adorable. Bonus points for feminism, geekery, queer themes and excellent tattoos. The Ultimate Kate or Die book is available from Etsy.
4) Dame Darcy
Artist, doll-maker, banjo-player, part-time mermaid… Dame Darcy is morbid and fabulous just like her comic Meat Cake, which largely defies description. A bizarre and chaotic mix of Victoriana, fairytales, gothic and goth, Meat Cake has a cast of equally strange characters which include a smooth-talking wolf, a superbitch mermaid, and the tragic undead Strega Pez who can communicate only through messages delivered on Pez-like tablets from her slashed throat. Makes Gloom Cookie look like The Archers.
5) Sydney Padua
Sydney Padua is responsible for taking the already badass Ada Lovelace, putting her in breeches, giving her a raygun and setting her off on a series of steampunk adventures where she can use MATHS to fight crime, solve mysteries, battle vampire poets etc… There’s a book on the way it seems, but in the meantime you can buy 2D Goggles merch.