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This article was published 3/12/2018 (787 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Five Brandon-area illustrators have pooled their talents to give back to the city’s arts community.
The artists — Tim Brown, Merissa Mayhew, Grace Buitenhuis, Dakota Bicklmeier and Jeremy Carter — created a comic book, called Wintergreen, to raise money for art education.
They manned a booth Saturday at the Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba during the annual Gala of Gifts for an autograph session to sell the comics, which sold for $5 apiece.
"I like giving back to the community," said Brown, while he and the others autographed books as visitors paid their $5 and chatted with the artists.
"The community has given me a lot."
Not only does he love drawing, said Brown a visual artist who teaches adult classes at the gallery the project has been cathartic for him.
"My comic deals with the death of my mother, which happened this past January. Also, my first son was born in July," said Brown, so his is a story of both life and death.
"It was a great learning experience," said Buitenhuis, who hopes to attend art school in Toronto. "It was great to work with other people."
Being able to do something for a good cause also made the effort worthwhile, Buitenhuis said.
"It’s really awesome."
The gift of giving is the overall theme of the comic book, illustrated with full-colour drawings by the artists.
"I suggested to these five geniuses that they try something together," said Curt Shoultz, who approached
the group with the idea of creating a comic book. "I know that they are as talented as they are committed, so I figured that at least with these five if I suggest something and they say they’re going to do it, it gets done," he said, " and it got done beautifully."
An anonymous donor put up the money to cover the cost of the printing, said Shoultz, who teaches at Brandon University as well as art classes at the gallery.
"But they (the illustrators) volunteered everything else," he said, adding they spent countless hours illustrating the books over the past two months.
Shoultz said about 500 copies were printed and will be available at the art gallery for purchase. Electronic copies of the book are available at sellfy.com/curtshoultz.
Shoultz noted the illustrators will also be at Friendly Neighbourhood Comic Shop on Pacific Avenue next Saturday to sign books from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
"It’s amazing," gallery co-ordinator Kate Hill said.
The illustrators are all very accomplished and talented, Hill said, adding Shoultz is a huge asset to the gallery.
"It’s a very typical Curt Shoultz kind of thing," Hill said. "He is, if anything, our greatest ambassador and he loves this gallery and we’re very grateful for him."
The money raised through sales of the comic book will go toward educational programs at the gallery.
"For example, if we find a child that’s been recommended for a class but can’t afford it (the money will pay for) scholarships," Hill said.
If a kiln breaks, or new equipment is needed, the money is also there to help pay for that, she said.
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