Annie Mok Draws James Joyce
Photos by Maggie Eighteen.
Cover selected by American Illustration for the AI-AP Archive 2012.

I adapted James Joyce's story "Araby" from his collection Dubliners into a two-color comic for The Graphic Canon, Volume 3 (Seven Stories Press, editor: Russ Kick). I created a monochrome version of the story for this self-published comic book, rounded out with a short adaptation of an excerpt from A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.

The cover's central image depicts Joyce as a child in a Donald Duck-style sailor suit, staring at the 19th-century photographer. This image felt appropriate for these stories of frustrated pre-adolescence. A series of comic strips of stories from Joyce's life fill out the cover. The "Annie Mok Draws" section of the title appears on a packaged bar of lemon soap, an in-joke for Ulysses fans. I borrowed the format of the cover from the Penguin Graphic Classics series. The self-cover, and the use of every inch of space for content, comes from Sammy Harkham's Crickets.

"Printed on a Risograph and alternating between a purple and blue monochrome for each spread, with a super sweet pink and blue cover, this little comic book is a beaut." - Frank Santoro, The Comics Journal

Cover and "Araby": Ink on Bristol, pencil on paper and Dura-Lar, gouache on watercolor paper, and digital; 11x14".
"Portrait" excerpt: Pencil and marker on Dura-Lar, 11x14".