Live/Work: Portland, Oregon as a Place for Comics Creation

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Huston, Shaun
Franz Steiner Verlag
Comic books; Work; Portland (Or.); Geography
article description
In my documentary film, Comic Book City, Portland, Oregon USA (2012), I construct a representation of the city as a place for comics creation based on interviews primarily with writers and artists, but also publishers, editors, and editorial staff, who have chosen to live and work in Portland. In this chapter, I highlight key aspects ofthis representation and elaborate on the broader contexts for understanding the significance of the city for people in this field. While comics creation and comics creators can be located in relation to broad categories such as the creative class (FLORIDA 2002) or "neo-bohemia" (LLOYD 2006), in both this chapter and in my documentary I emphasize the particularity of the relationships between people and place in Portland. Indeed, the city's attractiveness for comics writers and artists is indicative of the ways in which Portland is deployed both as an exemplar of development models derived from broader discourses on cities and creativity (see, for example, Florida 2005, Peck 2005), and as a cautionary case (Russell 2011, Silpayamanant 2012).