New Comic Alert: Salt n Pepperby GoComics Team
Say hello to Salt n Pepper, which launches on GoComics this week! The panel-format cartoon mixes media to explore creator Ghazal Qadri’s everyday life, including from her days in the Kashmir region where she was born. A graduate of illustration at Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Qadri uses her playful talent to illustrate books, digital products, comics, and more to show the humor, joy, and spirit in everything from stubbing your toe (why is it always the tiniest that bears the brunt?) to the simple pleasure of lying down and observing the world. (And when reading, keep an eye out for Qadri’s likeness—she makes an appearance in every story.)
Tell us about Salt n Pepper.
It’s a metaphorical description of using a pencil, a sheet of paper, and a few jiffies to arrest an instant into eternity.
What’s the significance of the name, Salt n Pepper?
My stories are not always the happy-go-lucky kind. I always try to be positive and enjoy life. Some of my stories are dark. Some are light. It’s all real. Salt n Pepper is like my daily journal!
What drew you to creating comics?
I’ve always been brain-wired to share my stories through ’toons and comics.
What do you miss most about living in Kashmir, and how does that show up in your comics?
I miss the food, I miss my room. I miss the weather, the blue mountains, valleys, lakes, and streams. I miss not doing anything and taking sips of hot salt tea. I miss spending time with my family. The culture and the simple pleasures of being at home.
What feeling would you most like us to walk away with after reading your work?
Take in the sights and sounds that you couldn’t experience firsthand, and feel light and have fun. This happens with all of us.
In your biography, you say that you “belong to the cult of the artists that makes art out of their lived experiences.” Tell us more about that.
In a conflict area like ours, most of the artists make art out of their lived experiences—and as such, it is difficult to separate politics from art. In the context of Kashmir, it is crucial to see which art form is given encouragement and which one isn’t. Music, poetry, or illustrations/’toons have a way of getting under your skin and the state is aware of the impact these media have. The artists go forth with their resistance knowing the cost. In a militarized Kashmir—whose spiritual poetry and folk traditions have given way to political hip-hop—my love for visuals is way better than my words to present everyday life. Through my illustrations, I’m sure I can make a difference.
What comics do you read every day?
Be sure to follow Salt n Pepper on GoComics where it will be updated once a week.