Hello! I’m Christine Mari and I am a 23 year old comic artist. I am half Japanese and I was born in Tokyo, Japan but grew up in the United States. I currently live in Los Angeles.
I draw autobiographical comics about a wide range of subjects, from my multiracial identity and my experiences living in Tokyo to my everyday struggles with anxiety and depression. I started posting my comics to Instagram in 2018 when I was in college and was really surprised and touched by all of the feedback and support I’ve received!
Recently, I self-published a 300-page compilation of my comics titled “Kokoro” through my first ever Kickstarter campaign.
Now? I’m just here, taking life one step at a time and seeing where this journey takes me. So far, it’s been quite the trip.
Can I repost your comic on my blog/website/Facebook/wherever?
As long as it’s not for commercial purposes, I am fine with people reposting one of my comics provided that they give me credit. Please don’t edit the comic (translations are okay). Thank you!
Can I use your work for educational purposes (academic project, presentation, thesis)?
If so, I am really flattered! In most cases I am okay with it but I appreciate having some background information first. Please contact me at email@example.com with details about your project and your intended purpose of using my work.
How do you make your comics?
Pen and paper — I’m super old school! I draw everything by hand first, then scan it and make my edits in Adobe Photoshop. My pens of choice are the Pitt Artist India ink pens by Faber Castell. For paper, I like the Moleskine Cahier journals, but I can and will draw on any available scrap of paper I get my hands on…
Can you draw something for me?
I occasionally take commissions. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss.
Do you sell prints?
I currently have a limited supply of prints for sale in my shop!
Can I get a tattoo of your art?
Absolutely! I would love to see it when it’s done, please feel free to send me a photo!
How do you deal with anxiety/depression?
I’ve always tried to be as honest and open as possible about my struggles with anxiety/depression online. If you find yourself struggling with a lot of the same issues and feelings, please know that you are not alone. My heart is with you. Recovery and healing is a long, difficult process, and I know just how hard it can be to be optimistic about life when you feel like you are undeserving or unworthy of happiness.
I am not ashamed to say that I have sought professional help for my depression. Here are some of the things that have personally helped me in my journey of growth and healing:
- Seeing a therapist
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, or CBT (you can read more about it here)
- Practicing mindfulness (read more about it here)
- Talking to close friends and family
- Drawing, obviously!
I understand that not everyone has access to the same resources as I am fortunate enough to have — it is unfortunate that a lot of mental health services, like therapy, are not universally accessible or affordable yet. I hope this changes in the future.
How do I get a social media following?
Let me be completely honest with you – I do not like social media, not one bit. A lot of people nowadays equate their success to the amount of followers they have on social media, and unfortunately this makes people believe that their talent can only be validated by however many likes or followers they receive. I used to beat myself up for losing followers or for not posting frequently enough until I realized how badly it was affecting my mental health (and my sanity). So if you want more followers just for the sake of having followers, this is my advice: don’t go down that road. You don’t need a huge following to prove that you are an awesome, talented person with an amazing gift!
The best advice I can give you regarding social media is to just be yourself. I know, I know that is such a cliché and you’re probably rolling your eyes right now, but I really mean it. Be genuine. Make things that you enjoy making, don’t create just because you think this is what other people want from you! I started drawing comics for myself and I only posted them online as an afterthought. Not everyone will like your work, but the people who do will appreciate you for being true to yourself.
How do I become a successful artist?
I’m still trying to figure out the answer to this question myself—let me get back to you!
How can I contact you?
If you want to ask me a question or just say hi, feel free to shoot me a message at email@example.com!