The 12th Annual Doug Wright Awards ceremony will be held at Toronto’s Marriott Bloor Yorkville Hotel this Saturday May 16, 2016 starting at 8:00 pm. This time around there are seven first-time nominees, many of which may not be as well-known to Saturday night’s crowd.
So in anticipation of the Big Night we decided to take a closer look at this year’s new-comers, in a series we’re calling “DWA First-timers”. Basically we emailed them some question designed to help you get to know them better, and this is what they had to say. Next up is Kat Verhoeven.
DWA First-timer: Kat Verhoeven
Who are you?
I’m Kat Verhoeven.
Where are you from? And where are you based?
From Kingston, Ontario, but I’ve been living in Toronto for the past ten years. I’ve also lived in Western Australia. Right now I move around a lot.
How long have you been making comics?
Sometime in Grade School all my friends were obsessed with Sailor Moon, and I used to do fan comics of our self-insert characters. I must have been 11, so as early as that.
What was your first comic?
My first real attempt at a comic was a 300-page epic I started when I was 13, written by a friend of mine, and abandoned after a couple years. My first creative difference! After that, I made my mini comic Dangerous Cooking in 2011, although I’d done a few shorts online and for school before that.
Who are your favourite Canadian cartoonists?
Kate Beaton, Lynn Johnston, Chester Brown. My friend Jason Bradshaw is a huge influence.
Is there anything that you think makes your work distinctly Canadian?
My settings are always Canadian, but as for any particular Canadian tone, I’m not sure. I don’t force an accent or Canadian mannerisms on characters, although I like to include the odd ‘eh’. My new release Before the Snows Come feels as Toronto as anything I’ve made, it’s a story told across street car tracks in anticipation of the cold winter.
When did you first hear of the Doug Wright Awards?
In 2011 when I started seriously looking at working in comics, and went to TCAF for the first time, volunteered, and attended the awards ceremony – I think Dustin Harbin talked that year. I remember leaving feeling very proud that we have such a strong comics community in Toronto. Spoiled, really.
Will you be at TCAF? If so, where can people find you?
I’ll be tabling at TCAF with Friendship Edition, at table 258 on the 2nd floor! we have a new anthology, and I have a new book of art comics that is VERY Canadian.
Finally, which title do you prefer “Nipper” or “Doug Wright’s Family”?
Nipper…it’s got more bite to it.
Kat Verhoeven is nominated for the 2016 Doug Wright Spotlight Award (a.k.a. “The Nipper”) for Towerkind (Conundrum Press). You can check out more of Kat’s work at www.verwho.com