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In 1941, Adrian Dingle created one of the first superheroines. Nelvana, Inuit goddess of the North has never been reprinted since. Read more

Toronto, Canada Comics
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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on November 1, 2013.

In 1941, Adrian Dingle created one of the first superheroines. Nelvana, Inuit goddess of the North has never been reprinted since.

Toronto, Canada Comics
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About this project

© NELVANA Limited.  Used with Permission.  All Rights Reserved.
© NELVANA Limited. Used with Permission. All Rights Reserved.

Stretch Goals:

$25,000 - Alex Perkins miniprint (8.25 x 5.5) for all funders who will be receiving a tangible item by mail.
$30,000 - Softcover book for all original art funders ($250/$500 funders).
$35,000 - Bookplate for all funders who will be receiving a hardcover/softcover book.
$40,000 - Exclusive miniposter by Nicholas Burns for all funders who will be receiving a tangible item by mail.
$45,000 - Nelvana bookmark set for all funders who will be receiving a tangible item by mail.
$50,000 - Every Kickstarter funder thanked in the Nelvana collected edition (hardcover and softcover)

Who is Nelvana?

Nelvana of the Northern Lights is Canada's first superheroine and one of the most popular creations of the Canadian Golden Age of comics. YES! Canada has a golden age of comics!

She was first published in December 1941 in Triumph-Adventure Comics, and ran as a feature for 31 issues, even having her own merchandise and graphic novel. She's one of the very first female superheroes ever created, predating Wonder Woman by several months.

Nelvana of the Northern Lights was created and developed by Adrian Dingle. The idea was conceived after hearing Inuit stories of a mysterious goddess-like figure relayed to him by his friend Franz Johnston (of the Group of Seven). Dingle decided to 'make her into a doll in a miniskirt' and thus Nelvana, defender of the Northern people and enemy to the Axis powers, was born.

After creating several comic book characters in the 1940s and becoming the art director of Bell Features, Canada's largest comic book publisher, Adrian Dingle went on to become an accomplished and recognized talent in Canadian fine-art. 

© NELVANA Limited.  Used with Permission.  All Rights Reserved.
© NELVANA Limited. Used with Permission. All Rights Reserved.
Adrian Dingle, creator of Nelvana
Adrian Dingle, creator of Nelvana

Wait, What's Canada's Golden Age?

In 1940, Canada implemented the War Exchange Conservation Act (WECA) which banned the import of luxury goods from the United States. Among these products were comic books.

The market now wide open, Canada began creating their own titles, which are now referred to as the 'Whites' for their lack of interior colour. While millions of copies were sold across dozens of titles from 1941 to 1946, when American comics returned to the newstands at the end of the war, the local industry couldn't compete with their high volume and low printing costs in colour. All comics produced during the WECA period are considered to be part of Canada's Golden Age. 

The page below is from a rare colour comic produced for Bell Feature's most popular storylines.

© NELVANA Limited.  Used with Permission.  All Rights Reserved.
© NELVANA Limited. Used with Permission. All Rights Reserved.

Who Are You?

I'm Hope Nicholson and my partner is Rachel Richey. We are long-time comic fans and academics currently based out of Toronto, Canada.

We are the holders of the exclusive rights to reprint Nelvana of the Northern Lights.

Both Rachel and I are passionate fans of the Canadian Golden Age of comics, and have been for years. We're thrilled that we finally have the opportunity to share this passion with you.

Rachel expresses this through her blog Comic Syrup, and I am a producer on the documentary Lost Heroes, about Canadian comic superheroes. 
We organize and host comic events in Toronto and are proud to support established and up-and-coming local talent.

This is us, spreading our passion at Toronto's Fan Expo convention in August 2013:

Why Reprint Now?

While producing Lost Heroes, I became in close contact with the copyright holders of Nelvana of the Northern Lights. After a year of chatting with them, I broached the idea of bringing Nelvana back to readers, and was honoured to be granted an exclusive reprint rights license for the stories. I'm thankful for the support of Corus Entertainment, Michael Hirsh, and the National Archives of Canada for making all this happen.

After years of communicating via e-mail, Rachel and I now live in the same city and have made strong connections with comic book artists, retailers, and fans. All of whom have shown enormous enthusiasm for this project and pledged their support. We're doing it now because finally, we feel confident that it CAN be done now.

Where Is the Money Going?

Even though we don't have to create the work itself, there's still a lot of time, work and travel needed to put this collection together. We will need to travel to the National Archives of Canada in Ottawa and private collections throughout Ontario to capture scans from their collections, as the original art plates have long since been lost. We will need to buy and rent equipment and software in order to capture and restore the collection in high-definition, with minimal alteration to the original artwork. We then will need to produce and ship all of the books and incentive prizes to all of our funders.

© NELVANA Limited.  Used with Permission.  All Rights Reserved.
© NELVANA Limited. Used with Permission. All Rights Reserved.

What Happens if Nelvana is Over-funded?

Rachel and I intend to put most of our funds into printing more runs and selling directly to comic book stores so even more people can learn about Nelvana. We also will be participating in various conventions so you can meet us in person.

The support for this project will show there's a market for Canadian Golden Age comics, and there's more than a few other Canadian superheroes we'd love to bring to your attention once this is a success: Adrian Dingle's The Penguin; Jerry Lazare's Wing; Leo Bachle's Johnny Canuck... 

© NELVANA Limited.  Used with Permission.  All Rights Reserved.
© NELVANA Limited. Used with Permission. All Rights Reserved.

Who's Involved?

We will be putting the book together ourselves, but we so have some help from our friends. 

Eisner-award winning artist Ramón Pérez will be in charge of our book design and head up most of the aesthetic designs of the project

Forewords will be contributed by Michael Hirsh (Nelvana Animation Founder) and Dr. Benjamin Woo (Comic Historian).

Original art created exclusively for this campaign will be provided by the following talented local artists (in the cases where the original art has not yet been completed, horizontal examples of the artists style are presented instead)

Ramón Pérez (Tale of Sand, Wolverine and the X-Men)

 Francis Manapul (Witchblade, The Flash)

Jeff Lemire (Essex County, Sweet Tooth)

 Ray Fawkes (One Soul, Constantine)

 J. Bone (Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Super Friends)

 Adam Gorham (Teuton)

 Steve Manale (Superslackers)

 Jason Laudadio

Jay Stephens (Tutenstein, True Patriot)

 Marco Rudy (Swamp Thing, Marvel Knights: Spider-man)

 Kalman Andrasofszky (Captain Canuck, X-23)

 Michael Walsh (X-Files: Season 10, Zero)

Scott Hepburn (Orchid, Star Wars: Clone Wars)

Jordyn Bochon

Kate Leth

Katie Shanahan

JR Faulkner

Genevieve FT

Alex Perkins

Sanya Anwar

Gisèle Lagacé with colours by SHOURI

Nicholas Burns

Salgood Sam

---

 This project is our passion, and we can't wait to share Canada's greatest superheroine with you.

Risks and challenges

We don't currently know which issues are in the worst condition. Through exploring the collections in the National Archives and private collections, we'll get a better idea of how much work it will take to delicately and carefully capture the artwork in each issue (at least 300 separate pages in total).

Because of this, it's difficult to get an exact timeframe of when the book will be ready to print, though we are determined to have it in your hands in Spring 2014.

Canadian Golden Age comic books are some of the rarest in the market, it's estimated that less than 10 issues exist of each one. It's suspected that there are a few issues that simply no longer exist in any form (or are hiding in your grandparents attic!)

Luckily, through our connections with the collector community we know the locations of at least one copy, in some cases up to 3, of each needed book of the Nelvana storyline! Each of the collectors have committed to this project and are willing to have their issues used when necessary in order to get this content published again.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

  • Yes! Apologies for not including it, but rest assured, if you purchase an original piece of art (not print) or the hardcover, you will receive a digital copy of the book.

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  • Yes, some of the artists attached were only fully confirmed after we went live. Rest assured, if you see them in the description, they will be contributing a piece and you can select it as your incentive!

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  • Yes! You can add on anything you like, just add on the base price of the incentive, and send me a message so I can add a note to your file

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  • Yes we can but please contact us directly. This is a bit more difficult in the case of the limited edition hardcover, but we can work something out with you.

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  • Good question! As I receive the answers from the artists, I'll post them here. As the art is completed, you can see it in the Updates section at the top, though I do not guarantee that all of them will be finished in the month of October.

    Steve Manale - acrylic gouache on a roughly 8.5 x 11 piece of 1.5 inch thick pine. Might go with a 5.5 x 9 inch piece (also 1.5 inches thick)

    Genevieve FT - 9 x 12

    Ray Fawkes - mixed media, 11 x 14

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  • Absolutely, we'll ship anywhere! And no additional shipping charges except for the hardcover which is an additional $15 outside of Canada.

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  • We are offering 4 variations.

    A single issue comic book - at the $10 level incentive. consider this a sample. It features the only colour comic, which is also printed in the actual books.
    The digital comic - at the $15 level incentive. It is also included in all high-level incentives as a bonus.
    The softcover - at the $30 level incentive. It is NOT a digest, and will measure at 6.5 x 10.
    The hardcover - at the $80 level incentive. Yes, it will be signed and numbered, and we are making a limited quantity of 100.

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  • Regional variations I assume. I'm from Winnipeg originally, and tend to use softer vowels. Either pronunciation is fine by us, so choose whichever is comfortable for you.

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  • Yes, they are. Numbers are determined by the order in which the funder pledged.

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $5 or more

    7 backers

    We'll tweet a personal thank you!
    Just send us your twitter handle.
    Because we really do appreciate your support.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    85 backers

    The only colour issue of Nelvana, reprinted for your reading pleasure as a comic book!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $15 or more

    71 backers

    A Digital Version of Nelvana! Ready to read on your Kindle, Kobo, or home computer.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $20 or more

    39 backers

    Calendar featuring 12 months of pin-ups of Canada's favourite superheroine as envisioned by members of our talented team. Digital PDF of the full Nelvana book included!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    16 backers

    Your selection of a Nelvana print by our roster of artists:
    Francis Manapul, Ramon Perez, Jeff Lemire, Ray Fawkes, J. Bone, Adam Gorham, Steve Manale, Jason Laudadio, Jay Stephens, Marco Rudy, Kalman Andrasofszky, Michael Walsh, Scott Hepburn, Alex Perkins, Kate Leth, and Jordyn Bochon

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $30 or more

    456 backers

    THE BOOK:
    One copy of the complete Nelvana collection!
    Approx. 175 pages, double-sided, gorgeous black and white art-work with minimal alteration from the original source. Includes the Nelvana colour issue.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $45 or more

    92 backers

    One hard-cover copy of the Nelvana book.
    This edition features a different cover than the signed & numbered limited edition hardcover available at the $80 level.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    80 backers

    READING PACKAGE:
    1 copy of the Nelvana Book, 1 digital copy of the Nelvana Book, and the Nelvana colour comic

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $60 or more

    56 backers

    By request!
    1 Nelvana book
    1 Calendar
    1 Print

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $75 or more

    24 backers

    By request! 1 Nelvana Hard-cover book 1 Calendar 1 Print

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $80 or more

    98 backers All gone!

    A hardcover edition of the Nelvana book. Limited quantities available.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $80 or more

    2 backers

    By Request:
    Retailer's Incentive: 5 Copies of the Nelvana Softcover Book

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    11 backers

    1 Softcover edition
    4 Prints
    1 Digital Edition

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $160 or more

    11 backers

    RETAILERS INCENTIVE:
    Buy 10 books at a 45% discount

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $240 or more

    6 backers

    Retailers Incentive: Hardcovers
    Receive 10 hardcovers at a substantially reduced funding level!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Adam Gorham exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Steve Manale exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by J. Bone exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Jay Stephens exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original artpiece by Jordyn Bochon, created exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Kate Leth exclusively for this campaign.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original artpiece created by Katie Shanahan exclusively for this campaign.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Genevieve FT created exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Sanya Anwar exclusively for this campaign.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $300 or more

    9 backers

    FULL PACKAGE:
    1 copy of each Nelvana print, 1 hard-copy of the book, 1 digital copy of the book, and 1 copy of the colour comic book addition.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece by Jeff Lemire, created exclusively for this campaign.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece by Francis Manapul, created exclusively for this campaign.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece by Ramón Pérez, created exclusively for this campaign.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Kalman Andrasofszky exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Michael Walsh exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Ray Fawkes exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    An original Nelvana artpiece created by Scott Hepburn exclusively for this campaign

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,000 or more

    1 backer All gone!

    One full page ad in the colour comic book, content must be approved by our editors first.

    Estimated delivery:

Funding period

- (30 days)