Pictured: Me, at my workspace
My name is Lars Martinson. I was born in Minnesota in 1977. I currently teach English in Kameoka Japan, while drawing comics in the evening.
I was first introduced to comic books in the sixth grade, and I’ve been drawing them ever since. My subject matter and style have changed a lot since then (I mean, one would hope, right?), but my devotion to the medium has remained constant.
I have visited more than fifteen countries as a tourist, and have lived in Thailand, Norway, and Japan. Overseas travel has proven to be a life-defining passion for me, and has afforded me the opportunity to meet a princess, see a five-legged cow, and eat raw octopus eggs.
My interest in travel and comics intersected during the course of my stay in Japan from 2003 to 2006. I was employed as an assistant English teacher through the JET Program, an exchange program sponsored by the Japanese government. The experience had a profound effect on me, one that I thought would serve as an interesting basis for a story.
With that in mind, I began work on a four-part graphic novel called Tonoharu at the beginning of my tenure on the JET Program. I continue to work on it today, and am now working on the third part.
In 2007 I was honored with a prestigious Xeric Grant for Comic Book Self-Publishers, to self-publish the first part of Tonoharu: Part One, which is now available for sale. See details about that here.
In April 2008 I returned to Japan to begin the study of East Asian Calligraphy under the auspices of a two-year research scholarship from the Japanese Government. The experience has been a revelation, and has greatly improved the quality of my comics.
In 2010 I released the second volume of Tonoharu.
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To view blog entries about my experiences in the JET Program, click here.
To learn more about my graphic novel Tonoharu, click here.
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