Jour du Souvenir. Remembrance Day.

Un coquelicot pour le jour du Souvenir

La série de bandes dessinées « Histoires d’escaliers » a pour cadre la fin des années 1950, au Québec. Les personnages de cette série, Doudou, Danny et leurs amis, sont nés quelques années à peine après la fin de la Deuxième Guerre mondiale.  Leurs parents ont connu la guerre et les hommes de la famille ont presque tous été soldats. Le coquelicot a une signification spéciale pour eux et pour l’auteure de leurs histoires.

Remembrance Day, also called Poppy Day.

The comic book series “Stairway Stories” features children growing up in Montréal (Québec) in the late 1950s.  Doudou, Danny, and their friends were born a few years after the end of World War II. Their parents lived through the war years  and most of the men in their family were soldiers. The red poppy has a special meaning for them and for the author of the series.

Jour du Souvenir et coquelicot. BD par Danièle Archambault. Remembrance Day, also called Poppy Day. Cartoon by Danièle Archambault

Jour du Souvenir et coquelicot. BD par Danièle Archambault. Remembrance Day, also called Poppy Day. Cartoon by Danièle Archambault

Histoires d’escaliers-Stairway stories

Histoires d’escaliers : Mardi, le jour du repassage

Je me remets à ma série Histoires d’escaliers.  Préparation du quatrième album de la série. Des histoires basées sur les jours de la semaine. J’ai terminé lundi et je travaille sur l’histoire du mardi que j’ai commencée il y a trop longtemps. On y retrouve Doudou, son amie Marion (à droite) et son ennemie-amie Louise dans la cuisine de Doudou par un jour pluvieux d’automne. Mais elles ne seront pas seules très longtemps. Danny, bien sûr, viendra les rejoindre suivi de quelqu’un qui n’est généralement pas le bienvenu… Une histoire qui se déclinera en cinq pages ! Du nouveau pour moi d’écrire des histoires si longues…

Une des cases que je viens de finir d’encrer ou presque…

Stairway Stories: Tuesday, ironing.

Back to working on the Stairway Stories series! Making progress on the fourth book of the series. Stories based on the days of the week. I finished Monday and I’m now making progress on Tuesday’s story, a story that I started a long time ago. Doudou, her friend Marion (on the right) and, Louise, her enemy-friend, are all in Doudou’s kitchen on a rainy autumn’s day. Soon Danny will join them followed by somebody else, somebody that Doudou does not like very much. A story in five pages. This is something new for me…

I just finished inking this panel (almost done)…

Histoires d'escaliers. Le mardi est le jour du repassage.--Stairway Stories. Tuesday is ironing day.

Histoires d’escaliers. Le mardi est le jour du repassage.–Stairway Stories. Tuesday is ironing day.

Stairway Stories: Dandelions for Mother’s Day!

Stairway Stories: Doudou and Danny celebrate Mother’s Day.

In Québec, we adopted the american tradition of celebrating Mother’s Day on the second Sunday of May. This is also the case in Belgium and other countries. However, in France, although the event is also held during May, it’s celebrated on the last Sunday of the month.

It’s a tradition to offer flowers to mothers on that day, especially carnations.  If you want to know why, follow this link to wikipedia. However, these days, mothers can receive a variety of beautiful and exotic flowers.

When Doudou and Danny were growing up, in Montreal, in the late 1950’s, mothers  often received a big bouquet of lilacs. These flowers usually bloom in mid-May; they’re beautiful and their perfume is amazing.  However, Doudou and Danny live on a second floor and although one of their neighbors has a beautiful lilac tree, on Mother’s Day, you need to give her 0.50 cents to get a bouquet. This is way too expensive for Doudou and her friends! Luckily, the landlord, who lives downstairs from Doudou, has a garden full of wild flowers that she is happily letting the children pick for their mothers!

Stairway Stories: Mother's Day! Comics by Danièle Archambault

Stairway Stories: Mother’s Day! Comics by Danièle Archambault

City children, our wild flowers were mainly dandelions. And we loved them! These bright yellow flowers were the first sign of the approaching summer…

 

No candy for Saint-Patrick’s Day?

A Cartoon Page for Saint-Patrick’s Day

Candy is part of so many holidays! Then, why don’t we have that tradition of candy giving on Saint-Patrick’s Day? Doudou knows why and she thinks it’s sad. But something cheers her up every year… My paternal grand-mother was Irish and my mother always celebrated Saint-Patricks’s Day. A warm and nice gesture to acknowledge my father’s heritage.

No candy fro Saint-Patrick's. A cartoon from Stairway Stories.

No candy fro Saint-Patrick’s. A cartoon from Stairway Stories.

 

International Women’s Day 2013

 End violence towards women!

The theme chosen by the United Nations for this year’s International Women”s Day is:

“A promise is a promise: Time for action to end violence against women”

The theme from Status of Women Canada is similar:

“Working Together: Engaging Men to End Violence against Women”

This years’s theme brought me back to my childhood and inspired me to write this one-page story. The characters from my comic book series Stairway Stories, Doudou, Danny, his cousin Michel, Marion, the best friend, and Louise, the friend-ennemy witness  a situation of domestic violence and intervene… Looking back, it seems to me that there was a lot of domestic violence around us when I was growing up. Not only from men towards women but from parents towards children, and children towards children. I remember a particular family, a friend from school who also lived in my neighborhood. This school friend, “Gaëtane” in my story, not only suffered violence at the hands of her parents, but  was also hit by her older brothers.  I was also puzzled and horrified to see how she herself acted towards her little sister. She could go, in a few short moments, from being  extraordinarily affectionate to terribly brutal. Violence towards women begins early..

No to violence towards women.

No to violence towards women.

Histoires d’escaliers. Stairway Stories

Histoires d’escaliers. Doudou et Louise.

Une nouvelle histoire qui commence dans ma série Histoires d’escaliers. J’essaie un nouveau style: Aquarelle et encre sépia. Je voudrais donner un aspect plus doux à mes illustrations. Je pourrais même adoucir un peu plus…

Quand à l’histoire… Pouvez-vous deviner ce que Louise et Doudou se racontent? Envoyez-moi vos idées!

Stairway Stories. Doudou et Louise.

A new story for my series Stairway Stories. I’m trying a new style. Watercolor and sepia ink. I would like to give a softer touch to the illustrations. It still needs work.

And for the story… Can you guess what Louise and Doudou are saying to each others? Send me your ideas!

Histoires d'escaliers. Stairway Stories. Doudou, Louise.

Histoires d’escaliers. Stairway Stories. Doudou, Louise.

 

Doudou, Danny and Valentine’s Day.

A trip for Valentine’s Day

Doudou and Danny are the main characters in my comic book series, Stairway Stories. They are six years-old and best friends. Danny just got a marvelous present from his father: a red tricycle. So, the two friends decide to use it to go on a trip. They want to go as far as possible. They want to go on the most wonderful trip in the world. And from what they understood, listening to the adults and the radio shows, watching some television, they know what that destination is, what trip they should go on. And there, they go…

This story is based on a childhood memory. I went on that marvelous trip with my little neighbor Alain, on the back of his tricycle. We got the idea after finding an old bouquet of flowers in our neighbor’s garbage. You can’t go on this trip without some flowers…

This morning, I was thinking of Valentine’s Day and that memory just came back to me.

A Honeymoon story for Valentine's Day. Stairway Stories by Danièle Archambault

A Honeymoon story for Valentine’s Day. Stairway Stories by Danièle Archambault

Stairway Stories” Time to shovel all that snow!

Stairway Stories. Time to shovel all that snow, Doudou!

Here’s the second page of this winter story from my second book: Stairway Stories. On the way to school. 

First, Doudou is insulted by Danny’s remark:

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Shoveling.

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Shoveling.

Then she gets to work:

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Doudou gets to work.

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Doudou gets to work.

 

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Doudou gets to work.

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Doudou gets to work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She’s proud of herself:

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Doudou is proud of herself.

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Doudou is proud of herself.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Doudou is REALLY proud of herself! And she discovered one of the great pleasures of shoveling snow when you live next to an annoying neighbor!

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Doudou is proud of herself.

Stairway Stories. Winter fun. Doudou is proud of herself.

 

 

 

 

Stairway Stories. So much snow!

Stairway Stories. A snowy surprise!

A huge snowstorm in Montreal on Thursday. More than 45 cm of snow (almost 18 inches)! Yesterday,I took a walk in Villeray, the neighborhood where Doudou and Danny, the characters from my comic series Stairway Stories, live. I took wonderful pictures of stairways and streets covered with fresh, white snow I was delighted to find a stairway still completely covered with snow.

It reminded me of one of the stories from my second book: Stairway Stories. On the Way to School. Doudou and Danny have to shovel their balconies and their stairways.

Here are the pictures I took today from this amazing stairway covered in snow and the first page of my comic book stories. I’ll post the second page tomorrow!

Snowstorm and stairways!

Snowstorm and stairways!

Snowstorm and stairways! A close-up!

Snowstorm and stairways! A close-up!

 

Surprise! It snowed! A page from the comic album Stairway Stories. On the Way to School.

Surprise! It snowed! A page from the comic album Stairway Stories. On the Way to School.