In this episode, I interview Sam Sawyer, creator of the animated series SALEM: The Secret Archive of Legends, Enchantments, and Monsters.
As a teenager in suburban Phoenix, aspiring artist Sam Sawyer couldn’t stop thinking about a story about a monster searching for an identity – an animated series that would feature a non-binary character as a hero.
Fast-forward a few years: now a successful comic artist and visual designer, Sam created the animated series “SALEM: The Secret Archive of Legends, Enchantments, and Monsters,” featuring the vocal talent of Rob Paulsen (“Animaniacs”), Laura Bailey (“Critical Role” and “Dragon Ball Z”) and Adam McArthur (“Star vs. the Forces of Evil”). It’s the story of a “cryptid” (creature) named Salem, raised by the Boogeyman, who learns that they are adopted. Without a gender and without a core identity, Salem embarks on a journey of discovery among the world of faeries, goblins, and other cryptids.
Rob Paulsen said of Sam “She did what all the folks at Comic-Con love about this whole experience. It’s not about anything but utter joy in expressing yourself, being creative and being accepted for who you are. I’m really proud of her.”
But Sawyer isn’t only determined to bring back the edgy animation of her youth; she’s also a veteran comic book artist, a published author, and designer of three Tarot decks. She appears at over 20 Comic-Con events per year and was an artistic collaborator on the new Lindsey Stirling music video, “The Upside.”
With her pink and purple “hombre” style haircut and bright personality, the queer-identified Sawyer knew she was an artist from a young age. Despite leaving home early, and even being homeless for a time, her determination and talent allowed her to find a space for her unique artistic vision and gave her the confidence to keep conquering new frontiers.
Laura Madalinski: Director/Co-Writer/Co-Executive Producer of 2 in the Bush: A Love Story
Laura spent her childhood in West Virginia where she was queer before she knew it had a name. She studied film and video at Columbia College Chicago before launching a career in post-production. After working in editorial boutiques for eight years she started her own company, Strange Charm. She got her start in independent film as an assistant editor on the award-winning documentary We Live In Public. She wrote her directorial debut, 2 in the Bush: A Love Story with her partner Kelly Haas.
To view the film, go to https://itunes.apple.com/us/movie/2-in-the-bush-a-love-story/id1486562578?ign-mpt=uo%3D4&mt=6
We sit down with singer-songwriter Julie Williams!
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