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Local creators worth checking out at this year’s Calgary Comic Expo

Enter the Artist Alley for some unique, Calgary-made art

Deadpool meets Totoro.

Courtesy Ian Navarro

Deadpool meets Totoro.

Beyond the celebrities and fandom at the Calgary Comic Expo is the essential Artist Alley, where you can catch up-and-coming artists, check out unique projects and maybe get a print or original drawing – some of these local pencillers and inkers might be tomorrow’s comic superstars.

Courtesy Dawn McTeigue

Dawn McTeigue

An ardent doodler as a child, McTeigue has been working her way into the comic industry for the past four years.

She’s drawn covers and interiors for Aspen, Valiant, Dark Horse, and an issue of DC’s Harley Quinn.

With a style inspired by famed Spider-Man artist J. Scott Campbell, McTeigue is currently focused on a comic series called DiVinica, which she co-created with her childhood friend. It’s based on Goddess legends from around the world.

They just wrapped up the first issue, focused on the Greek Goddess Aphrodite, and are now focused on a story around Nokomis, sometimes known as the Sky Mother in some First Nations history.

“Each one has so much character creation and outfit design – I’m having the time of my life,” she exclaimed.

McTeigue will have personal art book and a few copies of DiVinica at expo booth BMO V05-06.

Courtesy Danny Barnfield

Danny Barnfield

Barnfield is inviting Calgarians to join him on his journey navigating the trials of life.

He draws a web comic called Adulting. Cartoony, humorous and drawn from real life, Barnfield launched it this past September.

“It originally started as something fun to make my girlfriend laugh,” Barnfield admitted. “After a while, I posted them online, and my friends started following. Then their friends started following. It kind of escalated from there.”

He’s compiled his favourite strips into a comic book, which he’ll be selling at the Calgary Expo. Not bad for an artist who started with a Winnie The Pooh Trace-and-Draw as a kid.

Barnfield’s comic is online at Search him out at the Artist Alley at booth BF 4222

Courtesy Ian Navarro

Ian Navarro

Ian Navarro learned to draw as a child, sketching Ninja Turtles and ThunderCats in his notebook.

The details may have improved, but the passion hasn’t changed.

Navarro has drawn for a number of local projects, and done some standout work in Dynamite Comics Goblins.

His style is very much in the vein of artists like Jim Lee, famed for his run on the X-Men in the 90s.

“It was just really dynamic artwork – he put so much energy into his work,” Navarro said. “It helped it really pop.”

These days Navarro draws all digital, courtesy of his iPad pro. Expect to see prints of superheroes, anime – and a mash up different properties.

Navarro will be at booth BMO L05-06 in the Artist Alley.

Courtesy Cameron Cookshaw

Cameron Cookshaw

Self-publishing is never an easy venture, but artist Cameron Cookshaw is determined to make it work with his bold, Frank Frazetta inspired visuals in the Tacternicus Chronicles.

The comic book is a barbarian fantasy tale, similar to the Conan books Cookshaw would read as a kid. It follows three orphans of battle who are hired to steal a valuable artifact.

“With comics, the thing I really love is, it’s writing and art combined. I have a love for both,” said Cookshaw.

Cookshaw will have the first two issues of the Tacternicus Chronicles available at the Calgary Expo, along with some clothing designs from his Knowear line.

He’ll be at booth BF 4225 in the Artist Alley.

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