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Humor Comic Strips & Cartoons

For Better or For Worse

The Comic Art of Lynn Johnston

by (author) Lynn Johnston, Katherine Hadway & Amber Landgraff

Goose Lane Editions
Initial publish date
Jul 2015
Comic Strips & Cartoons, Marriage & Family
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Jul 2015
    List Price

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For thirty years, cartoonist Lynn Johnston made daily additions to what would become a monumental body of work: her newspaper comic strip, For Better or For Worse. Chronicling the daily lives of the middle-class suburbanite Patterson family — Elly and John and their children, Michael, Elizabeth, and April — Johnston's strip was ground-breaking in its adherence to narrative and emotional realism, and its refusal to engage in melodrama, superpowers, or anthropomorphic animals. As the syndicated strips appeared in daily newspapers throughout the 1980s, 1990s, and the first decade of the 2000s, these characters aged with their readers, and their trials and tribulations were the same as those of their readers: the daily struggles of work, family, school, and bureaucracy.

Wildly funny and formally innovative, For Better or For Worse: The Comic Art of Lynn Johnston was published to coincide with an international touring exhibition of Lynn Johnston's work, organized by the Art Gallery of Sudbury. The book features some of Johnston's most popular narratives, interspersed with an essay that chronicles the development of her drawing, her life, influences both personal and artistic, and the history of her wildly successful comic strip. This book also gathers together a generous selection of Lynn Johnston's daily comic strips and Sunday pages, spanning the lives of the Patterson family.

Whether readers are new to Johnston's work or old fans returning once again, they'll find this book to be a rich treasury of For Better or For Worse.

About the authors

Lynn Johnston est l'illustratrice et la créatrice de la bande dessinée For Better or For Worse (trad. Pour le meilleur et le pire), publiée par l'intermédiaire d'agences dans plus de 2000 journaux répartis dans 160 pays. Elle a étudie les arts au Vancouver College of Art et a débuté comme illustratrice de revues médicales à l'U. McMaster.

En 1979, Johnston a crée sa célèbre bande dessinée. Elle s'est inspirée de sa vie familiale quotidienne et de son vécu. Plus de 20 livres regroupent ses bandes dessinées, parmi lesquels David, We're Pregnant!, Do They Ever Grow Up?, Hi Mom! Hi Dad!, Happiness is a Warm Puddle et If This Is a Lecture, How Long Will it Be?

Elle est la première femme à gagner le US National Cartoonists Society Ruben Award, en 1985, quand elle est proclamée meilleure bédéiste de l'année. Johnston est nommée Membre de l'Ordre du Canada en 1992 et est la première bédéiste à introduire un personnage homosexuel dans une bande dessinée canadienne destinée au grand public (1993). Elle est mise en nomination pour le Prix Pulitzer en 1994.

Lynn Johnston's profile page

Katherine Hadway is the daughter of Lynn Johnston and works in her studio as her mother's executive assistant. She has a bachelor of science degree from the University of Western Ontario and a bachelor of fine arts degree from the Emily Carr University of Art and Design.

Katherine Hadway's profile page

Amber Landgraff is an artist/curator.

Amber Landgraff's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"This retrospective . . . digs deep into Johnston's archives and biography, in order to illustrate the stories behind the creation of the iconic family who aged in real time on our funny pages."

<i>Globe and Mail</i>

Other titles by Lynn Johnston

Other titles by Katherine Hadway

Other titles by Amber Landgraff