Now Or Never

Meet Autumn, a stereotype-smashing Muslim comic book artist

Autumn Crossman-Serb is a graphic novelist and illustrator from Winnipeg. She's Muslim and wears a hijab — and many of the characters she draws do, too.

Meet Autumn Crossman-Serb, a stereotype-smashing Muslim comic book artist

5 years ago
Duration 0:30
Autumn Crossman-Serb is a graphic novelist and illustrator from Winnipeg. She's Muslim and wears a hijab — and many of the characters she draws do too.

Autumn Crossman-Serb is a 26-year-old illustrator and graphic novelist in Winnipeg. She's also a young Muslim woman who wears a hijab — and has gained a following for her barrier-breaking art.

Crossman-Serb told Now or Never host Ify Chiwetelu that she makes it a priority to create work that features people of colour, but she was initially nervous what the response would be. The first time she released work featuring a hijab-wearing woman, she said that "it felt really good to finally have a story that felt more personal rather than, 'this white girl is going in to a fantasy world where there's other white people.'"

"The main reason anyone gets excited over my art — or someone else's art — is because you see yourself in something for the first time. And in that moment, it's kind of like 'oh, I do exist!'." 

With that sentiment in mind, we asked Crossman-Serb to share some of her top picks for diverse comic books created by women. 

Bride's Story takes place in Central Asia during the late 19th century. (Yen Press)

Bride Story by Kaoru Mori

"A historical romance manga about life in 19th century Central Asia, it's well researched and beautifully drawn with lots of details."

Autumn says that Kate Beaton is her 'ultimate Canadian art icon'. (Drawn & Quarterly)

Step Aside, Pops by Kate Beaton

"The ultimate Canadian art icon in my opinion, she's cool and smart and funny in the way Canadians are — dry and goofy."

Ms. Marvel is also known as Kamala Khan, a Muslim teenager with superpowers. (Marvel Comics)

Ms. Marvel written by G. Willow Wilson

"About Kamala Khan, a Muslim teenager who gets superpowers and decides to do something about it. Also full of fun and cute references to being Muslim that you don't see in a lot of other comics."

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