Stinky Cecil in Mudslide Mayhem is here!

Author Paige Braddock with her new book, Stinky Cecil in Mudslide Mayhem.
Author Paige Braddock with a copy of Stinky Cecil in Mudslide Mayhem.

It’s book release day for Cecil and his pond pals! Mudslide Mayhem is the third book in the Stinky Cecil series. Cecil and Jeremy make new friends, while Nesbit has his first experiences in the wild. Here’s a quick look:

It’s springtime at Cecil’s Pond and everything is coming alive: the flowers, grasses, insects, and butterflies. The marsh around the pond is all in bloom. Poor Nesbit (the chameleon) is overwhelmed by it all. He sees all the change as unsettling chaos!

Nesbit grew up in a pet store before moving to the pond. He has no idea what it’s like to live in the wild or where he fits in the chain of life. Cecil and his pond pals will have to help Nesbit along on his journey of self-discovery. Join Cecil and his friends as they celebrate all the diversity of life in the pond and the marsh that surrounds it. Sometimes, mayhem is good!

You can find Stinky Cecil in Mudslide Mayhem on Amazon and IndieBound. Happy comics!

A scene from Mudslide Mayhem of Nesbit and a ladybug.
Nesbit meeting his first ladybug.

Coming in February… Mudslide Mayhem!

SC_Mudslide_MECH.inddHey, Stinky Cecil fans! Book Three in the Stinky Cecil series, Mudslide Mayhem!, is on its way. The release date for the book is February 27 so mark your calendars! You can also pre-order it here.

Here’s a sneak-peek:

“It’s springtime at Cecil’s Pond and everything is coming alive: the flowers, grasses, insects, and butterflies. The marsh around the pond is all in bloom. Poor Nesbit (the chameleon) is overwhelmed by it all. He sees all the change as unsettling chaos!

Nesbit grew up in a pet store before moving to the pond. He has no idea what it’s like to live in the wild or where he fits in the chain of life. Cecil and his pond pals will have to help Nesbit along on his journey of self-discovery. Join Cecil and his friends as they celebrate all the diversity of life in the pond and the marsh that surrounds it. Sometimes, mayhem is good!”

I recently shared some of the newest installment of Cecil’s adventures with a group of aspiring cartoonists at my local library. It’s always fun to inspire kids with comics. Children have a surprisingly sophisticated sense of humor and it always cracks me up to hear them repeat jokes from the Stinky Cecil series.

Comics classSome early reviewers have offered good feedback for Book Four in the series. For example, Stinky Cecil expert, Phoenix, age 5, let me know in no uncertain terms that in the next book, Jeff should have a backhoe.

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Phoenix painting Jeff with a backhoe.

I have to agree with Phoenix that the story possibilities for the things Jeff could do with a radio-controlled backhoe are endless.

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I painted Jeff with a backhoe, too.

It’s rewarding to write a story for kids that’s fun and appealing, while at the same time teaching them a little bit about the science of the world around us. The residents of Cecil’s pond, despite their differences, come together for the common good of their shared ecosystem. In the end, they create an environment that works for everyone.

As we make our way through 2018, let’s remember how many creatures live downstream from us and how what we do in our daily lives affects the global ecosystem. My personal goals for 2018 are to be kind to others, to be kind to the environment… oh, and to draw lots more Stinky Cecil comics!

 

Stinky Cecil Book 3: In the Works!

I just finished penciling the third Stinky Cecil book titled, Mudslide Mayhem!

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The book will be out Spring 2018. I thought I’d share a few of the penciled panels along with a synopsis of the story. More updates to follow. Here’s to a fun adventure story starring a toad, an earthworm and a free-range hamster!


SC3-coverStinky Cecil in Mudslide Mayhem!

It’s springtime at Cecil’s Pond and everything is coming alive: the flowers, grasses, insects, and butterflies. The marsh around the pond is all in bloom. But wait, even after the spring rains subside, the water level in the pond keeps rising! Everyone must get to higher ground as they watch their homes sink beneath the surface. Even Jeff’s tree elevator is under water.

While Shelly, Nesbit and Sprout assist with the rescue operation, Cecil, Jeremy and Jeff set off to find the cause of the flooding. Will they be able to save the pond? Join Cecil and his pals for a muddy springtime adventure!

Cecil bk 3 sketch

And here is a photo from a recent book reading I did at the Elachee Science Center in Gainesville, Georgia. It was fun! Drop me a note if you’d like me to visit your school.

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Stinky Cecil is Going to Comic-Con!

Hey, Stinky Cecil and comics fans! Author Paige Braddock will be talking about Stinky Cecil and the gang at Comic-Con’s “Teaching STEM with Comics” panel. This special panel is open to Comic-Con attendees and the public. Just make sure to register.

Paige Braddock is also the Creative Director at Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates and will be signing copies of Peanuts books at the BOOM! Studios booth.

Hope to see you at Comic-Con!

Mark your calendars for:

FullSizeRenderSaturday, July 23, 2016
Teaching STEM with Comics
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM PST
San Diego Central Library

“Comics have been shown to improve reader engagement while enhancing both comprehension and retention. And with the new emphasis on reading nonfiction, academic vocabulary, and reading in the subject areas, comics are more relevant than ever. Education experts and creators present the best in comics and graphic novels for teaching science, technology, engineering and math. Featuring Paige Braddock (Stinky Cecil, creative director, Schulz Studio), Jim McClain (Solution Squad), Betsy Gomez (CBLDF), Jen Aprahamian (CTO of VINA), Mairghread Scott (writer,Transformers: Till All Are One, Guardians of the Galaxy), Rebecca Thompson, Ph.D. (head of public outreach, American Physical Society), and moderator Tracy Edmunds, M.A.Ed. (Graphic Novels are Elementary!).”

Sunday, July 24, 2016
Peanuts Books Signing by Paige Braddock
12:00 PM – 12:50 PM PST
Boom! Studios Booth

Terrarium Terror is Out!

SC2_COVER_finalThe latest installment in the kids graphic novel series, Stinky Cecil, is here! Join the pond gang and fun new characters in the second hilarious adventure, Stinky Cecil in Terrarium Terror!  Meet Nesbit, Cecil’s scary friend, a philosophical garter snake and third-graders Amelia, Teddy and not-so-nice Edgar.

Cecil and his amphibian pals are taking a well-deserved break after saving their pond from freeway construction when a third-grade science class shows up for a field trip. The kids nab Cecil for their classroom terrarium!

At first Cecil is terrified, but he quickly gets used to being a class pet. That is, until Nesbit the chameleon shows up. Nesbit wants to be just like Cecil, so he matches his colors and follows him all around the terrarium. He’s driving Cecil crazy!

Meanwhile, Cecil’s pals back at the pond are planning a rescue mission using Jeff the hamster’s radio controlled helicopter. But what will they do about Nesbit? Find out!

Author Paige Braddock brought copies of Stinky Cecil in Terrarium Terror! to LumaCon. Stinky Cecil fans gave it two thumbs up.

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Making Stinky Cecil: The Comics Process

Everyone has different ways of making a comic book. But all of us follow the same general steps to bring a comic book page to life. There are four main steps: Pencils, Inks, Flat colors and Final colors. I thought it’d be fun to show one page from the second book in the Stinky Cecil series, Stinky Cecil in Terrarium Terror, as it goes through this transformation.

Step 1: Pencils
Like most cartoonists, I loosely pencil each page of the book. This the “story” phase of the book where I’m figuring out how much text and art will appear on each page. Every page needs to have the right balance of text and art so that you move the story forward at a good pace. The goal is to have each page be visually interesting on its own, but to fit well into the larger story. The penciling phase is probably the most important phase of all.
Pencils

Step 2: Inks
Inking is probably the most fun for me. This is the stage where I solidify the look of the characters and sharpen their facial expressions.
Inks

Step 3: Flat colors

I work with my friend Jose Flores on coloring. I send Jose the inked pages and he sends back flat colors. Basically this means that he assigns a color to each shape that I’ve inked. At this stage, the coloring isn’t final he’s just creating shapes to make the final color easier.
Flat colors

Step 4: Final colors

At this point I create the final look of the page in full color. I change the colors to match the rest of the book and I also add shadowing and texture. It’s really fun to see a finished page come to life.

Final colors

Happy comic book drawing and reading! 

Stinky Cecil is Coming to See You!

Hey, Snoopy, comic and graphic novel fans!

Author and cartoonist Paige Braddock, Creative Director at Schulz M. Creative Associates, is kicking off a reading tour for a new children’s graphic novel. Due out in February 2015 from Andrews McMeel Publishing, Stinky Cecil in Operation Pond Rescue is the hilarious tale of a group of amphibians (and one free-range hamster) who set out to save their tiny pond home from one very large steamroller.

Mark your calendars for the following Stinky Cecil tour dates:

ARC of Stinky Cecil in Operation Pond RescueJanuary 17, 2015: LumaCON 2015
Petaluma, California
Paige Braddock will speak on the “Artists’ Stories” panel at 10:30 am -11:30 am PST and after will sign copies of Stinky Cecil nearby.

January 31, 2015: Schulz Museum
Santa Rosa, California
Paige Braddock will read and sign copies of Stinky Cecil at 2 PM PST.

Stay tuned for more reading tour announcements on StinkyCecil.com, Facebook, and Twitter. We hope to see you there!