Metaphrog’s “Little Mermaid” racks up another award

The Little Mermaid by Metaphrog - Cover

Only a week after winning the Excelsior Award Junior for their fairy tale-inspired graphic novel The Little Mermaid, Metaphrog were surprised – and honoured to receive the SICBA Outstanding Achievement to Comics 2018 award at Glasgow Comic Con this weekend.

Metaphrog are Franco-Scottish duo Sandra Marrs and John Chalmers, also winners of The Sunday Herald Scottish Culture Awards 2016 Best Visual Artist. They have been creating comics and graphic novels since 1996. Their graphic novels have received international acclaim and multiple award nominations, including three for the Eisner Awards, the Oscars of comics. Louis – Night Salad was also Highly Commended for the Scottish Children’s Book Awards 2011.

John’s from Scotland and studied engineering and science, gaining three degrees, including a PhD in Electronic and Electrical Engineering in a branch of Opto-Electronics involving micro-machining. In 1994 he had just returned to Scotland from working in the Netherlands.

Sandra, from France, has a degree in Arts and Letters, and had just packed her bags and moved to Scotland in search of adventure. Their meeting was a catalyst and within a few months they created Metaphrog.

Their most recent works are adaptations of fairy tales The Red Shoes and Other Tales (released in 2015, reviewed on downthetubes here) and The Little Mermaid, released last year (and reviewed on downthetubes here). They’re currently working on a third volume to be published by NBM/Papercutz, with support from Creative Scotland.

The SICBA awards (Scottish Independent Comic Book Alliance) are celebrated each year as a part of the incredibly vibrant Glasgow Comic Con. In previous years this award has gone to Frank Quitely, Cam Kennedy and Alan Grant.

It’s wonderful to have our 23 years in comics recognised in this way,” say the team of their latest award, “and Sha Nazir’s speech announcing the award was very touching.”

“We’re also absolutely delighted that our graphic novel The Little Mermaid has won the Excelsior Award Junior 2018,” say the team.

Photo of Metaphrog, aka John Chalmers and Sandra Marrs, by Bob McDevitt

Photo of Metaphrog, aka John Chalmers and Sandra Marrs, by Bob McDevitt

The Excelsior Award Junior is chosen each year by young readers in schools around the UK from a shortlist of books which this year also include The Baker Street Peculiars by by Roger Langridge and Andy Hirsh and Mega Princess by Kelly Thompson and Brianne Drouhard, among others.

The Excelsior Award Junior is the only nationwide book award for graphic novels and manga – where kids aged 8-11 decide the winner by rating each book as they read it.

• There are more details of all Metaphrog’s work on their website

• There are more details of The Little Mermaid on the Papercutz website

Read Jeremy Briggs’ review of The Little Mermaid

Read Jeremy Briggs’ review of The Red Shoes and Other Tales

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The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.



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