Happy Birthday to Cartoonist, Comic Book Artist /Illustrator Roberta Gregory, Also today, May 7th.

Happy Birthday to Cartoonist, Comic Book Artist /Illustrator Roberta Gregory, Also today, May 7th. Considered one of the pioneers of women’s comics, Roberta Gregory was born in Los Angeles, California. She grew up reading (and drawing) comics because her father, Robert Gregory, was a very prolific writer and artist for various Disney titles, including Donald Duck.-wikipedia

from Roberta's website:

"When I got into college (CSU Long Beach) in 1971, the feminist movement was in full swing, and I experimented with many different styles in the college humor paper, Uncle Jam (Published by Phil Yeh) until I created the "Feminist Funnies" strip in 1974. This was the year I sold my first story to the underground comic book, Wimmen's Comix, Issue #4 (published by Last Gasp of San Francisco). I expanded the comic strip into a comic book of my own, Dynamite Damsels (cover detail in strip at top of page). I think this officially made me the first woman to solo publish a regulation-sized comic book, but I don't think I knew it at the time. I was much inspired by (and had a lot of help from) Joyce Farmer and Lyn Chevli, of the Nanny Goat Productions collective, which had been publishing feminist comic books since 1972. My stories appeared in a few issues of their irreverent title, Tits and Clits, and a few more times in Wimmen's Comix through the rest of the 1970s and early 1980s."

"I was happy to be living proof that feminists did have a sense of humor, but I was really just writing and drawing the sorts of stories that I would love to read, if someone else was doing them. Nobody else WAS, so it seemed to be up to me, to create this stuff so I would be able to read it. And that has pretty much been the story of my creative life! When Gay Comix appeared in 1980, my stories were in several of the issues throughout the 1980s. All these comic books have been long out of print, but I am planning on someday (soon, I hope!) reprinting these decades-old stories for the benefit of my readers, the newer ones and those who have fond memories of my older stories."

So, when I was working on "The Artist Within: Book 2", I had the chance to make a portrait of Cartoonist Joyce Farmer, and in speaking with her about all the details of the shoot, she asked if it would be okay if her friend Roberta Gregory (who it happened would be visiting from Seattle at the same time) could be in the shot, and also If it was cool, would it be okay if Cartoonist Mary Fleener who was going to drive up to visit, could be in the shot too? I was ecstatic, the chance to have these three Comic Book legends in one shot was more than I could have dreamt, although now looking back I would still love to visit each of them separately in their studios and make a portrait. Anyway, here is the shot we made, from left to right, Roberta Gregory, Joyce Farmer, and Mary Fleener, photographed in Joyce Farmer's Southern California studio.

You can see more of Roberta's work on her website here:

and you can see more of my artist portraits here: