I am constantly telling people that the Schulz Museum is unique in that people can meet cartoonists, especially every second Saturday, when you can hang out with our Cartoonist-in-Residence.
We recently had two wonderful visitors—Sean McHugh the creator of the comic stripBroomsticks and the children’s book by the same name, and graphic novelist and author of the Amulet book series, Kazu Kibuishi.
Sean was here as our September Cartoonist-in-Residence, and after helping him set up I left him at his table with four young people who attentively watched him draw.
Throughout the day he drew several caricatures of our guests, all the while describing how he concentrates on the shape of the head and on the eyes. “You’ve got to get the eyes right” he said. After his time at the Museum, Sean went with our Education Director, Jessica Ruskin, to the Fiesta de Independencia, which featured games and activities for the entire family at the Wells Fargo Center for the Arts. Sean and Jessica went to spend an hour teaching the youngsters to draw the Peanuts characters.
Sean’s flight to Santa Rosa was sponsored by the Ledger-Independent in Maysville, KY. We thank them for bringing this wonderful young man to the Museum. Our guests enjoyed him very much. One never knows what and who will inspire a young mind.
The week before Sean’s visit, we had a visiting cartoonist, graphic novelist Kazu Kibuishi, the editor of Flight, an anthology of stories and art from around the globe, and creator of the Amulet series. Kazu and his two associates, Jason Caffoe and Zane Yarbrough, spent several days in the area, visiting with the Creative Associates staff, and making a day trip to meet a friend at Pixar and visit the Walt Disney Family Museum in the Presidio of San Francisco.
Kazu spoke in the auditorium and then signed books for Museum visitors. Again, our guests had a unique opportunity to visit with this talented artist.
I had not seen or read any of the Amuletbooks, but in looking through the fourth book, I was pleased to see how engaging it was. In fact my curiosity kept me up way too late.
I initially picked up the book, as I often do, just to flip through and see what sort of wisdom might strike me, though I quickly found myself at the beginning, intrigued to see how the story would progress and how the characters would fit together. I was truly engaged by his story and writing. I am now going out to buy the first three books in the series for myself and my grandkids this Christmas. Kazu masterfully fits his hero’s journey into the graphic novel format. Much like Sparky mastered the constraints of the newspaper comic format, Kazu has found a way to strengthen his creative storytelling work within the limitation of a graphic novel format.
Kazu and his friends had a chance to test their ice skating skills at Snoopy’s Home Ice. Kazu is pictured above with Zane Yarbrough (in purple) and Nina Kester (in the hat), who is the Associate Producer of Social Media for Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates.