I’m excited to announce my month-long stint at Rimbun Dahan Southeast Asian Arts Residency in late 2020! I’ll be their first resident comics creator (artist and writer), and I’ll mostly be working on my comics during that time – I’ll either be wrapping up my middle-grade graphic novel, or preparing for my Alexander the Great comic.
I would love for more Southeast Asian comics creators to apply to Rimbun Dahan, so this post is going to show you my application. Please feel free to use it as a template!
Please read Charis Loke’s guide on applying to Rimbun Dahan.
Charis’ guide covers all the information you need to apply for this residency. She’s an unusual interdisciplinary artist who works in the commercial arts, just like me. So I was able to use her guide as a starting point and adapt my application to my particular field.
(Thanks Charis, you’re a champ!)
What my post aims to do is show, specifically, what an application to Rimbun Dahan as a comics creator can look like.
Note that I am their first and only resident comics creator (at the time of writing) so I don’t think my application is the best or the only way to do it. But I hope it gives yall a good idea of how to tailor your comics accomplishments for this.
Some notes if you have any doubts:
– I don’t have an arts education (I am self-taught)
– I also make a webcomic and I listed that in my application
– I don’t have a gallery exhibition…yet
– if you think you have very little to show off, please apply anyway. Do not reject yourself. What matters is your passion and ambition.
I collated biodata, cv (resume) and residency statement into a single 4-paged PDF.
Here’s the structure I used:
ILLUSTRATION: SELECTED PUBLICATIONS AND CLIENTS
Voiceworks #115 Gothic (2019), Express Media, Australia, Cover Illustration
Rolled and Told #8 (2019), Lion Forge, USA, Illustrator
Voiceworks #111 Riff (2018), Express Media, Australia, “Truffle”, Interior Illustration
Neither Hair Nor There (2018), Petrie Press, Australia, Cover Illustration/Design
Dropmix (2018), Hasbro and Harmonix, USA, Illustrator
People of Colo(u)r Destroy Fantasy (2017), Destroy SF, USA, “The Things My Mother Left Me”, Editorial Illustration
Liquid City Anthology (2014), Vol 3, Image Comics, USA, Content Page Illustration
SELECTED COMICS AND GRAPHIC NOVELS
Seance Tea Party (2020), Random House Graphic, USA, Writer and Artist
The Maker’s Club Book 1: Game On! (2020), Difference Engine, Singapore, Writer and Colourist
Popeye’s 90th Anniversary Cartoon Club (2019), June 30th, King Features Syndicate, USA, Writer and Artist
The Carpet Merchant of Konstantiniyya Volumes I and II (2016 – 2018), originally self-published webcomic, print edition (2020) by Unbound UK, Writer and Artist
Adventure Time Comics (2018), Issue 20, BOOM! Studios, USA, “Downhill Derby”, Artist
The World in Deeper Inspection (2013-present), self-published webcomic, Writer and Artist
“A 250 paged graphic novel for children, to be published by Random House Graphic. A 5 x 8 inch book, with story and full-colour art. I’m both the author and illustrator. All art is made digitally on a laptop. The book has a deadline of March 2021, and is projected to be released in summer 2022.”
I wrote my comics portfolio separatedly from the application. It looks like this:
I listed 4 comics, including my project. It ended up being 8 pages long (mostly because of the comic pages I had to paste into the PDF).
Once you are ready, attach both the application and the portfolio into the SAME email to the Rimbun Dahan arts manager.
In the email itself, greet the manager and introduce yourself, and tell them you’re a comics creator/artist/writer and you’ve attached your application and portfolio.
The email title is “Application to Rimbun Dahan Residency Year XXXX as Graphic Novelist”
If you’re nervous, request that they confirm receipt of your email.
And that’s it.
Applications open sometime between August to October.
Once application closes, Rimbun Dahan doesn’t take very long to reply to you. I got my answer in early November. If you are accepted, they will arrange residency details then.
Make sure you understand your obligations as a resident artist. Please do not bail or ghost on your residency, either before or during. Plan ahead of time.
The residency is open to all Southeast Asian artists, not just ones in Malaysia.
That’s how I got my residency! I super hope this helps. If you ever apply to Rimbun Dahan, good luck! And please, let me know by sending an email or a DM on Twitter/FB. 😀
Reimena Yee is a graphic novelist, artist and flamingo enthusiast.
She writes and illustrates quite a few webcomics and graphic novels. When not making books, she lulls away her time with essays on craft, life and experiences in the publishing industry. Some of her thoughts of art and life are rather unstructured and will evolve over time as this blog matures, as they should be.
Currently committed to being Alexander the Great's death doula. Is a nerd for all things spooky and historical.
Melbourne / Kuala Lumpur