5 comic book artists I would PAY to work on their OWN comics

Everyone has been fantasizing about what they would do if they won the Powerball, which was over a billion dollars until a handful of people won it last week. Of course, I would put money into perfecting my self-publishing machine, but I would also devote a good portion of it to invest in comic book artists who create comics I want to read, but that I probably won't get to read because artists either have day jobs, or wind up getting sidetracked into working on projects for other people.  Eff what you heard! The only thing missing from the black comix underground is money! And if I had the money, I'd put it where my mouth is. Here's five easy bets...
  1. Ashley (a) Woods.
    I have been a fan of Ashley's work for a long time. Ashley's mind is full of great ideas and she has something to say that no one else would necessarily say.  I am really happy to see her getting success in comics, climbing the ladder to a beautiful collaboration on Niobe: She Is Life, leading to a new project at Marvel. Still, if I had my way, I would love to see Ashley in a position to drive the ship. Even if she works with a writer, I'd LOVE to see her hiring a writer to help drive her vision on a self-published project.  Ashley has really matured as an artist, and I'd love to see that mastery driving a book she owns.
  2. Sophie Campbell.
    The breakthrough artist on titles like JEM, TMNT, and GLORY, Sophie Campbell is another creator flirting with the brink of stardom for over a decade, with writing that is every bit as sensitive and gripping as her art. I first discovered Sophie's work when she was still going by Ross Campbell, via the incredible zombie horror graphic novel The Abandoned. Campbell's mastery of comics storytelling and commitment to diversity is unbelievable. I have written tons about Campbell's work on incredible genre-challenging books Mountain Girl, Shadoweyes, and Wet Moon so click here if you ain't already know. If I could, I would happily set up a salary that insured that Campbell would always have time to work on these projects, and any others that caught her fancy.  Without meaning to, Campbell's tales of beautiful freaks, monsters, and weirdos have definitely moved the needle for me on LGBTQ rights.  But don't be scurred, she isn't trying to recruit you, she's just making dope comics.
  3. James Stanley
    I'm not surprised if you haven't heard of James "Beefy Kunoichi" Stanley, but I bet if someone was paying him to put out his constantly in-production comic Part Time Shuffle, it would be out there, quickly making an audience for itself.  If I fell into millions, I would gladly be that someone.  I discovered Stanley's work back in the MySpace era, and he has been messing my mind up teasing his book ever since. Anyone who follows dudes like LeSean Thomas or Jay Electronica knows better than to dismiss someone making a great product that is on the back burner. Stanley is that kind of dude. I would love to see him get a big break. Whenever he unleashes PTS on the world, I guarantee his character Aishah will win a Glyph for best new female character the first year out the gate. Just watch...
  4. Black Kirby
    There is a special, magical brand of excitement being created out there right now friends, and its name is Black Kirby, the two-dimensional amalgam of John Jennings and Stacey "Blackstar Shabach" Robinson. Jennings and Robinson are college professors who combine as Black Kirby to headline gallery shows combine black heroism, futurism, and intellectualism.  That alone would be worth bankrolling, but they are always flirting (separately and collectively) with indie publishing.  I would love to be a patron on some Medici shit. I haven't had nearly enough time to write about their efforts, but that's gonna change in 2016. Would be nice to be able to put major paper down on it, though.
  5. Jamar Nicholas
    I had to resist the urge to hate on Jamar's brilliant webcomic Detective Boogaloo: Hip Hop Cop from the first time I saw it.  It touched a nerve in me, because Detective Boogaloo was the kind of comic I wanted to make, but wasn't quite focused enough to create myself. I have tried repeatedly to get Jamar to let me print Boogaloo in the GM magazine without success, but if I had a few millions in hand, I would still fund a publishing venture to get Boogaloo in shops of all sorts around the world.
I could have made this a list of 500 artists, not just 5...
Alas, it's all just a dream at this point.  But my hope is to get back to publishing my anthology magazine sooner rather than later this year, and while I can't pay these people to create their indie projects on a big scale, I can at least support them on a small scale, and encourage others like you to do the same!
Samax Amen is a professional Content Developer, Illustrator and Cartoonist. Click here to hire him to breathe life into your concepts.
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