Dec 8, 2010

Anna Bas Backer of Chicks on Comics

Today, please meet visual artist Anna Bas Backer of group blog Chicks on Comics. Those of you who know their stuff might have seen her illustrations in the Exberliner magazine before. All others, especially those of you interested in South America, just follow the jump for work samples, link tips, and... the odd joke! :)

What's your name, how old are you, and what do you do for a living (or all day, for that matter)?

My name is Anna Bas Backer, I am 28 and a visual- and comic artist. When the art doesn't make ends meet I work as an editor, illustrator, exhibition builder, translator, I fold envelopes, bake cakes and pile chairs. I sell merchandise, bring you your mail, serve coffee and breakfast, write about gloriously cheap hotel bedrooms in Dutch and go 'walkies' with your dog.

How long have you been blogging? How did you get around to blogging?

I had the idea for the blog in 2008 together with Powerpaola, a Colombian comic artist. I had spent some time in Argentina and Colombia and came back impressed by some of their online comic projects. I knew I wanted to do something online as well, to work with a public. Also, Paola and me thought it was great how boys tend to group and make work together and decided to 'gang up' for ourselves.

What's your blog called and why?

The blog is called 'Chicks on Comics'. The name is inspired by the name of the band, 'Chicks on Speed'. The insinuation being that we are addicted to comics.

What are you blogging about? Why?

We blog about practically anything. Our posts function like an ongoing conversation, except that each post is a comic panel.

Who's your target audience?

Its open to anybody of course. Who we did intentionally mean to reach were girls, because we had ourselves felt a lack of role-models growing up. Along the way we learned that boys also enjoy female role models or women with a sense of humor for that matter.

Who designed your blog? How much was that? In case you designed your own layout: Where did you learn how to?

Paola and me kind of ping-ponged the separate tasks of building up the site. I did the portrait-icons of the authors. The title banner is newly designed by a different author every few months. The blog's design is one of the standard options offered by the blog provider.

Which software and which host do you use? Can you recommend them?

We use Blogspot and I have absolutely no clue if this is advantageous or disastrous. Every once in a while one of my more conspiracy-scared friends points out to me that Blogspot is part of Google, and that whatever misfortune may befall me is my own fault. Well, how do I know they aren't programmed robots?

What role play photos, MP3-files or video clips on your blog? If you use them, would you mind showing us one?

We want the blog to read like a comic, so the posts are exclusively drawings that are part the project. In the sidebar, however, by clicking on the author's picture you get linked to each of the author's personal blogs.

How many readers do you have? How many would you like to have? Does their number matter to you at all?
At this point 168 people openly admit to being followers. So it might be a couple more than that. It steadily grows. Most apparent for me are the many readers in South America. Internet's social relevance seems to have moved at a faster pace there. Also, it seems to me that they are less shy to share their comments and reactions online.

Can you learn how to blog? Do you need to know a lot about computers? Do you have any advice for beginners?

I think blogs are especially easy to use and allow for a lot of creativity. My advice would be to carry a wish and awareness to share online.

Have you made negative experiences with blogging, too? What kind?

Something is up with the colors. Sometimes colors appear strange. It's like they get simplified or something. I'm feeling a conspiracy coming on...

And have you ever made money through your blog? If yes, how so?


Do you use twitter, too? Why (not)? What pros and cons do you see when it comes to twitter?

Nope, not that nor Facebook neither. The con is that I couldn't be bothered. The pro is that everybody else uses them, including my boyfriend who subsequently keeps me perfectly connected by word of mouth.

Which other female bloggers can you recommend? Why?

I am a great fan of Gabriel Bell. She's articulate and a great draftsman. Her blog is, 'Lucky':

The Fartparty by Julia Wertz is awesome:

I like reading Dispatches from Tanganyika by my favorite author Poppy Z. Brite. She mostly rants on about her garden, life and cooking, but she does it well:

In the Argentine blog 'Historietas Reales' over 15 authors publish comics daily about their life and times, (in Spanish). About a handful of them are female and some of the boys are feminists... RIGHT?! :


  1. I admit I'm following too now!
    Thanks for introducing me to a more than fantastic blog, once again! I'm always glad to find a source of great comics, especially comics by women/girls.

  2. Glad to hear you liked the interview, E*phi! :)