Category Archives: Activism

Sneak Peek: Queer 101

So in order to prove that I’m actually doing my masters – I thought I’d show you a info comic that’s going at the start of the book. The idea of it is that it’s a super simple queer 101, it’s only a draft at this stage, and it’s pretty flawed still but here it is anyway:
Also! My friend works for Amnesty International – and they’re having a wicked fundraiser, if any Auckland artist folks want to be involved:

Amnesty International Fundraising Event:

We are organising a live street art day followed by an auction to celebrate our 50th Birthday.

We have titled the event “The Art of Freedom – taking it to the streets” and it stems from the idea that change starts from ordinary people speaking out from the streets in protest of human rights violations around the world. We are hoping to use the connection between Amnesty’s action against injustices and the questioning nature of street art to spread awareness of Amnesty International while celebrating our 50th year of defending human rights. We have also done a lot of campaigning on behalf of artists who have been unfairly punished for using their freedom of expression and would like the event to highlight the importance of this right in creating change for the better.

The event itself will be split into two days. The first will be live street art painting, were artists from Disruptiv and Cracked Ink will create works in St Kevin’s Arcade to raise awareness for Amnesty and generate interest for the exhibition. This will take place on Thursday June the 9th between 11am and 2pm. The second event is the exhibition that will include the works from the live painting as well as pieces from artists around New Zealand. Already we have several works that have been donated, including ones from ATom 1746, James R Ford and Seekayem. Oi You!, the national street art competition are on board, helping us with promotion and sending us prints to add to the collection.

If you would be willing to help by donating a piece, participating in the live painting or simply suggesting the idea to other artists who might be interested we would appreciate it greatly.

For more info email Rachel at:

events(DOT)intern (AT) amnesty (DOT) org (DOT) nz

So much awesomeness

So there’s a couple of really awesome things coming up!

First off! I’m speaking next Tuesday night at the Genderbridge meeting about trans webcomics. Basically I’m gonna be chatting to people about why webcomics are awesome, how I got started and what making comics means to me, and what other webcomics are out there for and by trans people. So, yeh, if you’re in Auckland come along! Deets are as above, or you can visit the facebook page.

Also, I wrote a comic for Funtime Comics’ Darkest Day Earthquake Relief Comic – and you can now buy it online off the website or click here for a list of other places to get it. All proceeds go to the NZ Red Cross, towards the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal.

And finally, DUD: Volume 2 is going to be launched in Dunedin at the start of May. More details to come soon! YAY!

Pink Shirt Day 2011

April 14th is Pink Shirt Day: an international campaign against bullying. I’ve talked about it on this blog before, but I thought I’d raise it again since it’s coming up soon. Also, I thought I’d draw a picture promoting it, because I will take any opportunity I can to draw wolverine.

Wolverine's colour is now officially pink.

Also, for people who are interested, New Zealand are doing a letter writing campaign, to let the government know we don’t think that the stats on queer youth bullying are ok, and we want to see something done about it.

UPDATE: I made another poster, thanks to Jason for the request!

Update: This one’s thanks to Louise!

Conference

A while ago I made a poster for the Pacific and Asia Regional Trans and Intersex hui as part of the Wellington Outgames Human Rights conference. I volunteered to help out a bit getting international participants to the conference – and it was soo awesome to meet all the faces I’d been emailing, and pestering for details. It was such an overwhelming, incredible experience to share stories and ideas with a room full of 90 or more gender diverse people and allies.

I really don’t think I can  describe the feeling. I spent most of the time pretending to find jobs, because I felt like if I stopped and thought about how many cool activists, who did incredibly important things, I’d probably start crying or something. And that would ruin my *manly* reputation.

No, but seriously, it was incredible.

For the three days after that there was the official human rights conference for the outgames – and I got to participate in some incredibly powerful workshops. It’s given me a lot to think about, in terms of my own privilege, and in terms of what sorts of things I could be involved in, and I feel empowered to put on my activist cape and walking alongside the incredible change-makers I met.

Plus! I got to see Joe too!! It was great. I think I would have spent the whole time freaking out if he wasn’t there to squeeze my hand every now and then, and to check in with him after each day. He’s cool. Really, really cool. I miss him. Saying goodbye again was a little heartbreaking.

Oh yeh, and I got to see roller derby too!! (as noted in the above comic) As part of the Outgames they had a special Trans Tasman match. The Wellington Richter City All Stars vs. The Sydney City Assassins. Holy.Crap.it.was.so.awesome. Wait for fan art. My world has been officially changed.

Wow. This has been a super long post.

Dude!

I’ve been lucky enough to have had some of my comics accepted into a new zine called DUDE! (Even being lucky enough to provide the cover image). The zine is all about providing a resource for negotiating trans male relationships.

In it I’ve got some comics (including the one below) about questions trans guys have been asked… that aren’t necessarily happy for us to answer…. and some alternatives to maybe use.

If you’re in Melbourne, Australia on the 18th of Feb you should totally check out the launch party: details :)

Trans Post Statement Project!

Joe and I have launched a community art project on Tumblr! The idea for this originally stemmed from Joe’s thesis and was just transmasculine in New Zealand based – but we decided to expand it out to have ANY one who has ANY statement on how they feel about their gender; transwomen, transmen, genderqueers, drag performers, cis, etc. etc.

We felt like while Joe has to limit his thesis (based on time constraints and word limits) we didn’t have to limit this particular project in the same way.

We’re basically keen to show off your stuff!  Postcards can be any size/shape/format -it’d be great if they had a visual element to it, but if you don’t wanna that’s cool too – it’s just any statement you wanna share that describes or relates to your gender/sex/identity/etc. It can be anything about being a gendered/non-gendered human in the world.

So, currently, there are no set limits for the submissions, (provided they are not sexist, racist, homophobic or transphobic) I think we’re just keen to see what art is produced.

One note tho, if you’re transmasculine/GQ and from NZ, could you leave us a little note so Joe knows if he can contact you about using the art in his thesis…

Again, the link: www.transpoststatement.tumblr.com

Trans Remembrance Day

Stickers

So last year Joe and I made up some stickers for Transgender day of Remembrance, on November 20. We are nerds so we had a maths theme about the whole thing, and wanted to have a message about breaking down the binary and encouraging tolerance celebration of diversity….

 

Dunedin Comic Collective

So a few years ago some mates and me set up a Comic Collective in Dunedin – ’cause we realised there were quite a few of us who drew comics or who liked reading ‘em. We used to get together and drink and draw, and we had dreams of creating our very own comic book.

Well years later, and after a few pit-stops it’s finally been created! Ladies, Gentleman and Everyone else:  I present to you DUD Vol. 1! It’s an anthology of local (Dunedin) and national (New Zealand) comic artists, including me! Plus it comes with a FREE cd of local bands too.

Basically it’s awesome and I feel really proud about seeing it published. So yeh, if you’re interested you should buy it.

So y’all should totally visit the Dunedin Comic Collective site and order one!

OUSA Self Harms

I live in a university town – in fact Dunedin’s uni is the oldest in New Zealand. So on the 5th of July (during the middle of school holidays) the executive decided to hold a referendum to see if students wanted to downsize their student association (OUSA) executive.

The argument goes is that the student association is big business – millions of dollars to manage – and with 17 people on the executive it’s too “dysfunctional”. So they want to cut it down.

Instead of offering students a choice of models of how a downsized exec might look they picked one model and asked students to vote on it. In this model the exec gets cut from 17 members down to 10. A more “manageable” number.

BUT.

In this model we lose the Women’s Rep, Pacific Island Rep, and Queer Rep, and the Maori Rep’s role changes significantly. In conclusion we lose representation for already vulnerable, disenfranchised groups.

Through a series of incredibly bias posters, and manipulation of student apathy, the referendum passed. Albeit by a mere 78 votes.

This would be somewhat ok if  OUSA really was merely a business. If it was only about managing assets, putting on shows and making money, money, money.

But, it’s not.

OUSA is responsible for representation, for student welfare, and for making political noise.  It’s the group of young leaders that we go to: it is our voice for systemic change within the university, within the city and to the big fella’s in the government; it provides us with advocacy and support spaces; it campaigns for our rights; it represents us in all our diversity.

And we’ve just lost the voice, representation and visibility for Women, Pacific Islanders and Queer people.

Super suck.