Exhibitionists·Video

Meet the illustrator bringing Margaret Atwood's dystopian comic world to life

Discover how Vancouver-based comic book artist Johnnie Christmas rekindled his passion for comic arts and found a collaborator in the beloved author.

Johnnie Christmas rekindled his passion for comic arts and found a collaborator in the beloved author

Discover how Vancouver-based comic book artist Johnnie Christmas rekindled his passion for comic arts and found a collaborator in a famous author. 3:29

In Vancouver's Mount Pleasant neighbourhood, you'll find buildings housing the studios of some of Canada's most sought-after artists, including Johnnie Christmas (yes, that's his real name!). Christmas has been busy illustrating Margaret Atwood's first graphic novel Angel Catbird, the story of a scientist caught in a war between human-cat and human-rat hybrids. The first volume was released last fall and landed on the New York Times bestseller list for 10 weeks, with the second volume in the series due out on February 14 (Valentine's Day for all the cat lovers out there).

In this video, Christmas talks about his collaboration with Atwood — but also about how he came back to comic arts after tragedy struck his life and derailed his interest. He had crafted a five-year plan to transition back to comic arts and now, by working with Atwood, he can certainly cross "work with a Canadian literary legend" off his list. Christmas concludes that the road to any goal can be long, but "every day is an opportunity to move in the direction of your truest self."

Watch Exhibitionists Sundays at 4:30pm (5 NT) on CBC.

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