Cooltural Shift

by Laila Ekboir

I created these images for a zine I’m currently working on. A while back, I found myself musing about various trends that have gained traction in popular culture thanks to the movies. I started off thinking about pirates, how they used to be considered dirty, ugly, goofy even, but thanks to Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom they became exceedingly sexy. It seemed like a fun concept to explore so over time I’ve tried to come up with other examples.

These three spreads are what I’ve come up with so far. I dropped the pirates because it was hard to differentiate the ‘old’ pirates from the sexy ‘new’ pirates. Orlando Bloom may have been beautiful to look at, but his character was still dirty and swashbuckley.

I’m drawing these in my down-time for a one-page zine. I expect to publish it though Liquen, the illustration collective I’m a part of. We came into being in 2017 and our goal is to create a support network for ourselves in an industry that is often very lonely and demoralizing. We try to push each other to create more content and to find ways of sharing that content with the world (which can be quite scary on your own). Together we participate in local zine fairs, we post online, and in the future we hope to put together shows and workshops.

If it weren’t for Liquen, this idea would probably never have taken shape. At most, I would have made a few loose illustrations to show on Instagram. I can’t stress how important it has been for me to have a group of peers that I can turn to for advice, emotional support, and drive.

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