27 September 2016

kuš! fall season has started

The mushroom and berry picking season has begun! kuš! is very happy to announce it's ripe mini kuš! offerings for the fall. They will be released immediately and you can order them now!  

Excerpt from Daria Tessler's mini kuš!

Michael DeForge, Ville Kallio, Daria Tessler and Anna Sailamaa created very special stories to lighten up your fall or to make it even darker, you choose....

Each book has 28 pages, full color throughout, offset printed  in Latvia on high quality environmentally friendly Munken Pure paper, saddle stitch binding, pocket format (A6). Released on 28 September 2016.

Order the mini kuš! collection for $19 here or get each mini kuš! separately for $6 (worldwide shipping costs already included in the price!). In case you'd also like to get the following kuš! releases, subscribe here.


mini kuš! #43 'Meat Locker' by Michael DeForge

Short strips about gyms, trainers and meatheads.


mini kuš! #44 'P-FE/FRAF' by Ville Kallio

Automation did not free us from work, it merely allowed an ever expanding production of highly advanced weapons technologies and surveillance. The air saturated by nanomachines produces a distinct hum.


mini kuš! #45 'Music of Changes' by Daria Tessler

Genetically modified plants grow into randomized sculptures. Order and disorder, determinism and unpredictability, protestors and magic tricks all commingle at the John Cage art farm.

mini kuš! #46 'Everyone Is Hungry' by Anna Sailamaa

The slow moments before falling into sleep. The sound of sparrow’s wing feathers, a rumpled tablecloth and curtains moving with the wind. The night draws closer and gently darkens the sky.

Pick your favorite berries and mushrooms, place your order here, and soon you'll get the required vitamins for your brain to get through the fall! And watch out, very soon the kuš! book season continues with the š! anthology #26.

Komiksu Konkurss 2016

Izsludināts ikgadējais komiksu konkurss latviešu māksliniekiem! 

Ilustrācija: Līva Kandevica, komiksu konkursa 2015 laureāte

Komiksu žurnāls kuš! sadarbībā ar Beļģijas-Luksemburgas-Latvijas tirdzniecības kameru izsludina komiksu konkursu 2016, kurā piedalīties aicināti profesionāli autori, komiksu zīmēšanas amatieri, mākslas studenti un jauni talanti – visi, kuri ir vismaz 16 gadus veci un kurus interesē un aizrauj vizuālu stāstu stāstīšana. Konkursa finālistu apbalvošana un izstādes atklāšana notiks Beļģijas dienu Rīgā ietvaros.

Uzzini vairāk: http://komikss.lv/konkurss/

English summary: We've just announced the details for the annual Latvian comics competition. It's aim is to foster the Latvian comics scene. All Latvians and everyone permanently living in Latvia is invited to take part.

30 August 2016

Behind The Comics (22) - Aseyn

'Behind The Comics' continues, this time with Aseyn. He contributed 'Deep Shit Honey' to š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka' and here he tells a bit how he creates his comics.

Aseyn / // *1980, France. Aseyn is a cartoonist living in Paris since forever. He varies techniques according to the story he wants to tell, from the softest to the hardest. Aseyn has published several comic books since 2010 and is currently working on a long sci-fi saga. His favourite manga is a short story by Katsuhiro Otomo called "Speed."

Aseyn: I'm living in Paris and I work at home. I use computer or traditional techniques to draw my comics, it depends on what I want to say, but mainly it depends on what I want to see once the work is finished.

As I work every day for comics and illustration, mostly mainstream, when it comes to my own stuff, I consider different ways to tell a story, leaving aside the usual codes. I'm counting on the reader to fill in the blanks. It's not a lazy statement, I prefer to rely on the cleverness and feelings of people. Anyway, I keep the panels. When we see panels, we think "it's a graphic novel, there's a story". That's a clue.

In my work, I depict things that make me dream, fantasise, or just interest me to draw. But things that can speak to everyone who sees them, just by their nature. A palm tree, a cell phone, a girl walking. So why would I tell the story if you can do it yourself?

Technically I draw a lot of stuff, without thinking or any method. After I've done like 20 of drawings, I look at the whole thing, and I put together the pieces. As you can see in these images, it's not sexy, and most of the time, I erase things that I consider useless.

In the particular case of my story for Gaijin Mangaka: Environment is important ; not only what we can see but what we can hear. That's why I use lyrics, or quotes from songs or book that touch me. That's not original but as an illustrator I must rely on other people’s work and this work is often words that accompanies your illustration. And of course I prefer drawing text than writing it.

The song in the comics is 'I Follow Rivers' by Lykke Li. I do not particularly like this song. It just came from a misunderstanding I had. I remembered "deep shit honey" instead of "deep sea baby". As the songs are often found in love stories, in the beginning as well as in the end (and it's often the same song), I thought it could make a good short story, this story of misinterpreted lyrics. Here, we are at the end of a love story and of course the two characters are in a deep shit.

To see in how deep shit they really are, better read Aseyn's finished comics in š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka'.

22 August 2016

Behind The Comics (21) - Hetamoé

'Behind The Comics' continues, this time with Hetamoé. She contributed 'Trance Dream Techno' to š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka' and tells about her process of developing the story.

Hetamoé // *1984, Portugal. Hetamoé is a visual artist from Lisbon and a founding member of the zine label Clube do Inferno. She works in a variety of media and is currently pursuing a PhD in the field of painting. Thomas no Shinzō by Moto Hagio and Yotsuba&! by Kiyohiko Azuma are her top favorite mangas.

Hetamoé: I live and work in Lisbon, where I’m finishing a PhD in Painting. I have, for that reason, two separate work spaces: a desk at home, where I mostly write and draw on the computer with my graphics tablet (a Wacom Intuos Pro‎); and a small studio, where I paint and make everything that’s too messy for the house. Because I follow Parkinson’s Law − “work expands so as to fill the time and space available for its completion” −, I tend to be all over the place no matter what I’m doing. Often there are books, random drawings and stationary everywhere, which can be very annoying for those with whom I share space... I’m also overly sensitive to criticism while working on a piece, so I’ll shut myself at home or my studio and won’t come out until it’s complete! However, despite my best attempts at seclusion, I inevitably come across comments and advice from my loved ones that fill me with self-doubt and force me to rethink my practices. Though I’m reluctant to such destabilization, I know it helps me become a better artist, so in the future I’d like to control my insecurities and actually listen to more feedback at production stages. Below is a photo of my desk at home, where I made “Trance Dream Techno” for š! #25 ‘Gaijin Magaka’. I tidied it up a little so you won’t think too badly of me! 

11 August 2016

Behind The Comics (20) - Ben Marcus

Ben Marcus contributed the story 'Fool Of Memory' to š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka' and provides a little look behind his desk, telling about his process in this newest instalment of 'Behind The Comics'.

Ben Marcus // *1983, USA. Ben Marcus is an artist and illustrator living and working in Chicago. His favorite manga is Akira by Katsuhiro Otomo.

Ben Marcus: I live in Chicago. I have a studio in Garfield Park. I drive to it from my apartment in Pilsen when I'm not at my 'day job'. It's a nice little studio.

I'm still learning how to make comics. The comic I did for kuš! was my longest comic to date. 8 pages! I'm more of a weird narrative drawing person than a full on 'comic' person. But it's coming together, I was happy with what I made. Although it was really hard for me to do. This is my drafting table at the start of my process. Just flipping through sketch books, looking at drawings of Buddhas, trying to figure out the look of my characters. The proportions of the facial features is important to me and I draw and re-draw them. Too many times. I wanted my characters to have a contemplative complexity to them. A depth of consciousness that a sense of animation is born of.  I drew everything by hand and scanned it and added the half-tones in photoshop.

2 August 2016

Behind The Comics (19) - GG

In 'Behind The Comics' kuš! contributors give an insight into their work. After a longer break this blog feature finally returns! GG is telling about creating her story 'Lapse' for š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka'.

GG // *1981, Canada. GG grew up during the 1980s in a small Canadian prairie city. In this pre-Internet era, isolated geographically and culturally, drawing and making up stories was her means to connect to something more. Her favorite manga at the moment is Seiichi Hayashi's Red Colored Elegy.

Follow her also on twitter.com/ohgigue and blog.ohgigue.com and support her on Patreon, where you can get more insights behind her work!

GG: My work space is pretty minimal. I don’t really stick to one set up. Sometimes I’ll sit on the floor  to draw or sometimes I’ll work in bed or sometime I’ll stand or sometimes I’ll even sit in a chair at a desk like a regular person. But even though my set up is flexible and portable, I can only really work from home while alone. I find it extremely difficult to work in public places like cafés or new/unfamiliar places if I happen to be traveling.

Before I started focusing on making comics, I traveled a lot for a few years and that forced me to keep my physical possessions to a minimum and I just got used to living like that. It’s so much easier to keep my surroundings organized this way. This is especially good because my work process is a bit messy – not messy in the sense of paper laying around everywhere and paint splattered on the floor – but in the sense that a lot of it happens in a jumble of information stored in the weird space between my mind and my hard drives and I’m constantly adjusting my methods.  

26 July 2016

š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka' is out now

š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka' introduces you to the global movement of comics creators infused and enthused with different forms of manga and making their very own. As co-editor Berliac puts it: "We made a tight selection of some of the most representative independent cartoonists working outside of the manga closet (all top quality Nigiri, no cheap Maki here), Wasabi provided by Paul Gravett in the form of a foreword. Itadakimasu! いただきます"

Cover by Berliac

Contributors: Andrés Magán (Spain), Aseyn (France), Ben Marcus (USA), Berliac (Argentina), Daylen Seu (USA), Dilraj Mann (UK), GG (Canada), Gloria Rivera (USA), Hetamoé (Portugal), König Lü.Q. (Switzerland), Luis Yang (Spain), Mickey Zacchilli (USA), Nou (USA), Vincenzo Filosa (Italy), xuh (Poland). Coeditor: Berliac Introduction by: Paul Gravett (UK) 

Format: A6, 164 pages, full-color, perfect bound, printed in Latvia on high quality and environmentally friendly Munken paper. Released 26 July 2016.

Get it:  Order it for $13.95 from our webshop or get a kuš! subscription and receive also the next kuš! titles. Worldwide shipping costs included in price!

Have a look inside:




To read the whole issue and discover the taste of west meeting east, order š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka' here.

5 July 2016

š! #25 coming out soon!

š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka' will be a very a special issue, Paul Gravett sums it up best in his introduction to this book:

"Something extraordinary is happening right now in the wider global manga movement outside Japan, a further sea-change in its irrepressible revolution and evolution, and this special issue of kuš! captures a vital snapshot of this through brand-new work by some key current innovators working outside Japan. From the ceaseless two-way ebb-and-flow of influences between manga and Western comics, Berliac and David Schilter have gathered an exciting crop of contemporary ‘gaijin mangaka’, so-called ‘foreign comics creators’, predominantly young writer-artists from Europe and North and South America."

š! #25 'Gaijin Mangaka', will be released 26 July 2016

Cover: Berliac (Argentina) Contributors: Andrés Magán (Spain), Aseyn (France), Ben Marcus (USA), Berliac (Argentina), Daylen Seu (USA), Dilraj Mann (UK), GG (Canada), Gloria Rivera (USA), Hetamoé (Portugal), König Lü.Q. (Switzerland), Luis Yang (Spain), Mickey Zacchilli (USA), Nou (USA), Vincenzo Filosa (Italy), xuh (Poland). Coeditor: Berliac With an introduction by: Paul Gravett (UK)

Format: A6, 164 pages, full-color, perfect bound, high quality and environmentally friendly Munken paper.

Get it:  Pre-order it for $13.95 from our webshop or get a kuš! subscription and receive also the next kuš! titles.

Preview Pages:

2 June 2016

Open Call for š! #27 'BFFs'

After over two years it's finally time for a new open call for the kuš! anthology. Don't miss it, friends!

Excerpt from Hironori Kikuchi's comic 'Friends'

Full details of participation:

- Theme: BFFs ("Best Friends Forever")
- Page count: 4-16 (preferably even numbers)
- Language: English
- Format: DIN A6, width 10.5cm × height 14.8cm
- Bleed: In case you want your comics to be full bleed make sure to add 3 mm cut off space all around the comics (in this case the width of each page should be 11.1 cm and the height 15.4 cm). Don't place texts and important details close to the page borders (Bleed explained in a graphic).
- Colors: Yes, CMYK, b/w works are also welcome
- Resolution: 300 dpi (1200 dpi for b/w works)
- File format: preferably tiff or pdf
- If we publish your comics, you'll get at least 5 free copies
- Submit only low resolution jpgs for our consideration (but big enough to read (approximately 900 pixels in width)! The big resolution files as described above we'll ask you to send later.)
- please include a short description of yourself and a link to your site/blog
- Deadline: 26 September 2016
- Send to komiksukonkurss@gmail.com

Additional notes: 

- After receiving your work we'll write you a confirmation e-mail within 7 days. If you don't hear from us, write us again, maybe your mail got lost.
- The decision what we'll publish will be made until 17 October. We'll mail you if you're in!
- We'd prefer if you don't publish the full comics on- or offline before we print it. 
- The theme is BFFs, not BFFS, however you may interpret it very widely, also stories about the worst friends are welcome.
- If you have any questions, just write us. Best if you write a comment below, as other people might have the same question.
- We are always looking forward to see new approaches in storytelling and art. Don't limit yourself!

Previous issues of š! you can find here: komikss.lv/books/s/. If you have never seen them, it might be helpful for you to take a glimpse at some excerpts or get a previous issue to get a better feel of it.

You can also follow us on twitter, facebook, tumblr and instagram.

8 May 2016

new and new old minis

We release a brand new mini kuš! by Laura Ķeniņš and second editions of the sold out minis by Jesse Jacobs, Lala Albert and Anna Vaivare.

Due to the high demand of the mini kuš! by Jesse Jacobs, Lala Albert and Anna Vaivare we decided to reprint them. So if you didn't get them the first time around, now is your chance to catch up! Instead of just reprinting old comics, we also release a special new mini kuš! by Laura Ķeniņš. Her comic 'Alien Beings' is about the 90s, divorce and aliens!

Specs: Each book has 28 pages, full color throughout, offset printed in Latvia on high quality environmentally friendly Munken Pure, saddle stitch binding, format DIN A6. Release: 12 May 2016.

Get them: Order them altogether for $19 here or get each mini kuš! separately for $6 (worldwide shipping costs already included in the price!). Our subscribers get the new mini by Laura Ķeniņš for free (it will be sent together with our next anthology š! #25)!


mini kuš! #42 'Alien Beings' by Laura Ķeniņš

Driving home, a young girl’s family encounters strange lights. After that night, everything begins to change at home.