CBLDF Podcast Episode 28: Ronald Wimberly

podcast logo
In this episode, we speak with cartoonist/writer/editor/designer RONALD WIMBERLY about his career and current work, including the new magazine LAAB, his webcomic/essay LIGHTEN UP, and his upcoming book SUNSET PARK.

We discuss his inspirations, his thoughts on politics, art, and activism, and a dozen other fascinating tangents from one of the sharpest minds in comics.

TOPICS INCLUDE: Gekiga, Kreigstein, Zipatone, and BAD BRAINS.

The CBLDF Podcast is part of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s ongoing education program, made possible in part with a donation from The Gaiman Foundation, and member support.


Emory Douglass – “The Black Panther Party is often associated with armed resistance, but one of the most potent weapons in its outreach to African-Americans in cities across the country was its artwork. In posters, pamphlets and its popular newspaper, The Black Panther, the party’s imagery was guided by the vision of Emory Douglas, its minister of culture.”

Simplicissimus – “Combining brash and politically daring content, with a bright, immediate, and surprisingly modern graphic style, Simplicissimus published the work of writers such as Thomas Mann and Rainer Maria Rilke.”

Zipatone – Also known as screentone, it is a technique for applying textures and shades to drawings, used as an alternative to hatching. Zipatone is now an obsolete graphic design material that came on a thin plastic film with a slight adhesive over a backing sheet.

Dave Passalacqua – Wemberly’s professor at Pratt.

Bad Brains  – “Originally formed as a jazz fusion ensemble under the name Mind Power,[5] Bad Brains developed a very fast and intense punk rock sound which came to be labeled “hardcore”, and was often played faster and more emphatically than the music of many of their peers.”

Gekiga (劇画) – literally translates to “dramatic pictures” as opposed to manga which translates to “whimsical pictures.” Refers to comics with a more cinematic aesthetic. Examples of Gekiga: A Drifting Life by Yoshihiro Tatsumi, Cigarette Girl by Masahiko Matsumoto, and Kamui by Sanpei Shirato.

Bernard Krigstein –A classically trained painter who enjoyed a successful career in comics. Most notable comic work Master Race from EC Comics.

Russell Patterson – helped craft the American idea of the flapper with his art deco style illustrations.

Antonio Lopez – a fashion illustrator whose work appeared in most of the top fashion magazines.


Lighten Up


Read the full webcomic here

 Check out the original nib piece that inspired the

full-length book Black History in Its Own Words

black-history-in-its-own-words-angela davis

“The one where the brother goes to space”Read EC Comics Judgement Day here. Check out CBLDF’s Executive Director Charles Brownstein talk about Bill Gaines and the Comics Code involvement with Judgement Day here.

Here you can read about the upcoming movie adaptation of Ronald Wimberly’s Prince of Cats

Help support CBLDF’s important First Amendment work in 2018 by visiting the Rewards Zone, making a donation, or becoming a member of CBLDF!