False Start

Made for the Utot Komiks challenge, 16 pages
Updated physical editions will debut at TCAF 2024
Download a free/pwyw pdf at https://kylas.itch.io/false-start

False Start

Made for the Utot Komiks challenge
16 pages
Updated physical editions will debut at TCAF 2024

What Could Have Been

Made for the Utot Komiks challenge
Updated physical editions are available at in-person events, in my online shop, at MORI by Art+Flea in Honolulu, and at Silver Sprocket in San Francisco.

NIHAO

A comic about memory, microagressions, and anger
Updated physical editions are available at in-person events, MORI by Art+Flea in Honolulu, and Silver Sprocket in San Francisco.

Hourly Comic Day 2022

Selected comics from Hourly Comic Day 2022
Get it on Ko-fi (pay what you want)

Single Page Comics

Ocean in My Kitchen
Square (Lyrics from Mitski's "Square)

Chrysalis (excerpt)

Writer: Phillip Maira
Read the full comic in Crackle Vol. 3
Phillip's Twitter // Phillip's Website

Shop Catalog

Current and past products for sale at shop.aikosmith.com (currently on break) and in-person events
Stockists: Silver Sprocket, Other Realms, Bas Bookshop, Skull-Face Books & Vinyl, Fantom Comics

Interested in stocking my products? Let's chat! Email me at hello (@) aikosmith.com

What Could Have Been

Made for the Utot Komiks challenge
Updated physical editions are available in my online shop.

NIHAO

A comic about memory, microagressions, and anger

Hourly Comic Day 2022

Selected comics from Hourly Comic Day 2022
Get it on Ko-fi (pay what you want)

Single Page Comics

Ocean in My Kitchen
Square (Lyrics from Mitski's "Square)

Chrysalis (excerpt)

Writer: Phillip Maira
Read the full comic in Crackle Vol. 3
Phillip's Twitter // Phillip's Website

Language Experience

› Mandarin Chinese (Traditional) to English translation for independant comic artist JULAI (various comics)
Critical Language Scholarship - 2018 - Finalist/Recipient - Xi'an, China
› Knowledge of Traditional and Simplified Chinese

› Fulbright Research Award - 2020 - Semifinalist - Japan
› CET Academic Programs - 2018 - Osaka, Japan

Editorial and Journalism Experience

Big Hype Volume 2
Star Tales

› Society of Professional Journalists Intern (Editorial Intern) - 2020 - HAWAII Magazine - Honolulu, HI
› Editorial Intern - Character Media - 2019 - Gardena, CA
› Editor's Assistant - Scripps College Office of Marketing and Communication - 2017 - Claremont, CA

Select Lettering Experience

Gokurakugai by Yuto Sano - Shonen Jump/VIZ Media - Supernatural Action
Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Vol. 4+) by KOKONASU☆RUMBA - VIZ Media/VIZ Media - Comedy/Slice-of-Life
Komi Can't Communicate (Vol. 25+) by Tomohito Oda - Shonen Sunday/VIZ Media - Comedy/Romance/Slice-of-Life
Love's in Sight! by Uoyama - VIZ Media/VIZ Media - Comedy/Romance/Slice-of-Life
Dandadan (Ch. 62+) by Yukinobu Tatsu - Shonen Jump/Viz Media - Supernatural Action
Super Smartphone by Kentaro Hidano and Hiroki Tomisawa - Shonen Jump/Viz Media - Sci-fi/Mystery
RuriDragon (Ch. 3+) by Masaoki Shindo - Shonen Jump/Viz Media - Supernatural Slice-of-Life
Everything is Fine, by Mike Birchall - Webtoon Original - Horror
The Worst Ronin by Maggie Tokuda Hall and Faith Schaffer - Young Adult, Clarion Books/HarperCollins, 2024 - Fantasy
The Secret of the Ravens by Joanna Cacao - Middle Grade, Clarion Books/HarperCollins, 2023 - Fantasy

Lettering Examples

Select Lettering Experience

Touch-up Artist and Letterer for Gokurakugai by Yuto Sano - Shonen Jump/VIZ Media - Supernatural Action
Touch-up Artist and Letterer for Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Vol. 4+) by KOKONASU☆RUMBA - VIZ Media/VIZ Media - Comedy/Slice-of-Life
Touch-up Artist and Letterer for Komi Can't Communicate (Vol. 25+) by Tomohito Oda - Shonen Sunday/VIZ Media - Comedy/Romance/Slice-of-Life
Touch-up Artist and Letterer for Love's in Sight! by Uoyama - VIZ Media/VIZ Media - Comedy/Romance/Slice-of-Life
Touch-up Artist and Letterer for Dandadan (Ch. 62+) by Yukinobu Tatsu - Shonen Jump/Viz Media - Supernatural Action
Touch-up Artist and Letterer for Super Smartphone by Kentaro Hidano and Hiroki Tomisawa - Shonen Jump/Viz Media - Sci-fi/Mystery
Touch-up Artist and Letterer for RuriDragon (Ch. 3+) by Masaoki Shindo - Shonen Jump/Viz Media - Supernatural Slice-of-Life
Lettering Assistant for Everything is Fine, by Mike Birchall - Webtoon Original - Horror
Letterer for The Worst Ronin by Maggie Tokuda Hall and Faith Schaffer - Young Adult, Clarion Books/HarperCollins, 2024 - Fantasy
Letterer for The Secret of the Ravens by Joanna Cacao - Middle Grade, Clarion Books/HarperCollins, 2023 - Fantasy
Creator (author, artist, letterer) of Foxlight - Middle Grade, Feiwel and Friends/Macmillan, 2024 - Fantasy
+ more

Language Experience

› Mandarin Chinese (Traditional) to English translation for independant comic artist JULAI (various comics)
› Critical Language Scholarship - 2018 - Finalist/Recipient - Xi'an, China
› Knowledge of Traditional and Simplified Chinese

› Fulbright Research Award - 2020 - Semifinalist - Japan
› CET Academic Programs - 2018 - Osaka, Japan

SUPER SMARTPHONE (weekly online simulpub)
by Kentaro Hidano and Hiroki Tomisawa

Touch-up Art and Lettering by Kyla Aiko
Translation by David Evelyn

Touch-up Art Highlights
› "Googugu" logo creation & replacement, Eye pattern recreation, Smartphone screen glare recreation, Hand-drawn SFX (in speech balloons), Handwritten journal entry, page layout
Programs: InDesign, Illustrator, Clip Studio Paint, Photoshop

THE SECRET OF THE RAVENS
by Joanna Cacao

Sample pages provided by the publisher. Higher quality preview images available upon publication.Programs: InDesign, Clip Studio Paint, Photoshop

EVERYTHING IS FINE
by Mike Birchall

Read Online HereProgram: Illustrator

LOUIS' QUANDARY
by JULAI

Lettering and Commissioned Mandarin Chinese to English Translation by Kyla AikoPrograms: InDesign, Procreate, Photoshop

NIHAO

THE ORGAN HARVESTER

Story, Art, & Letters by JULAIMandarin Chinese to English Commissioned Translation by Kyla Aiko

DESIGN

SUPER SMARTPHONE (weekly online simulpub)
by Kentaro Hidano and Hiroki Tomisawa

Touch-up Art and Lettering by Kyla Aiko, Translation by David Evelyn

For Super Smartphone, all text on screens is flattened into the provided art files, so part of my job is erasing the original Japanese text on the phone screens, retouching/replacing the screens with matching screentone, and laying out English text where the Japanese once was. Since this series releases simultaneously with the Japanese print edition on a weekly basis, all touch-up art and lettering is completed on an accelerated schedule.Touch-up Art Highlights
› "Googugu" logo creation & replacement, Eye pattern recreation, Smartphone screen moire recreation, Hand-drawn SFX (in speech balloons), Handwritten journal entry, page layout

1871 LA Chinatown Massacre Commemoration Event Design

Scripps College and Chinese American Museum of Los Angeles

Hourly Comic Day 2022

Selected comics from Hourly Comic Day 2022

Femme Divine Tarot

Branding for Femme Divine Tarot

Beyond the Horizon Literary Magazine

Logo Iterations for a middle school literary magazine

LOUIS' QUANDARY
Art and Story by JULAI

Lettering and Commissioned Mandarin Chinese to English Translation by Kyla Aiko

Critical Language Scholarship Alumni Society

Branding for CLSAS (Globe Icon is a CLSAS Asset)

Select Comics

Ocean in My Kitchen
Square (Lyrics from Mitski's "Square)

Color Design

The Out Side

Available wherever books are sold
ISBN-13: 9781524880125
ISBN-10: 1524880124
176 pages, paperback, 6″ x 9″

On Sale Now! Nominated for the 2024 Eisner for Best AnthologyBookshop.org || uk.bookshop.org

Books a Million || Wordery || Barnes and Noble || McNally Robinson || Amazon || Indigo || WalmartYou can also ask your local book/comic store to order The Out Side :)

Disclosure: I am an affiliate of Bookshop.org (US link only, not UK) where your purchases support local bookstores. I will earn a commission, at no cost to you, if you click through and make a purchase.

ALA Booklist (starred review)
“A gorgeous anthology with stories from 29 trans and nonbinary artists.” -Sarah Rice
YALSA's 2024 Great Graphic Novels for TeensAmerican Booksellers Association
"The Out Side is such a beautiful anthology that shares trans and nonbinary stories from all walks of life. All the authors approach their stories in very different ways; when it comes down to it, they all feel so interconnected and warm." -Olivia Hoover, Book Passage

Add The Out Side on Goodreads here

In this vibrant and affirming comics anthology, 29 trans & nonbinary comic artists share their personal journeys of self-discovery and acceptance.Featuring the work of Sage Coffey, Kyla Aiko, and Coco Ouwerkerk, The Out Side: Trans & Nonbinary Comics includes 29 creators' tales of self-love and affirmation and detailing their experiences with gender and identity. Originally published as a successful Kickstarter campaign, this expanded edition includes comics by Dana Simpson (bestselling author of Phoebe and Her Unicorn), Aidyn Huynh (Snailords), Wren Chavers, and more.Equal parts encouraging, comforting, and life-affirming, The Out Side is a love letter to the trans and nonbinary community, designed to inspire anyone who may be struggling with their own identity and to help educate those who seek greater understanding. As artist Julia Kaye writes in the book's introduction: "I’m so glad this book exists. It’s a loud proclamation of our existence in the face of a culture that has for too long ignored our experiences."

Contributors: Kaz Fantone, Coco Ouwerkerk, Julie Fiveash, Cyrus, Min Christensen, Ashi, DaToonie, Vixtopher, Wren Chavers, Matteo Montero-Murillo Mel Valentine Vargas, Kyla Aiko, Nasr Bin Safwan, Dana Simpson, Lae Louie Schäfer, Veronica Jane, Dashi, Aidyn Huynh, Al Acevedo, Wey Song, Sam, Liam Coballes, Lake Fama, Lucas James, Sage Coffey, Zhen, Maddie Tacobus, Jam Aden, Tara Madison Avery & Mike Sullivan, Julia KayeOrganizers: The Kao, Min Christensen, and David Daneman
Cover Inks and Design: The Kao
Cover Colors: Min Christensen

Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated

Available wherever books are sold
ISBN-13: 9781940878867
ISBN-10: 1940878861
136 pages, hardcover, approx. 10.3″ x 6.6″

On Sale Now!Massive Bookshop (indie bookshop that ships worldwide)

Barnes and Noble || Amazon || Indigo || McNally Robinson || WalmartYou can also ask your local book/comic store to order Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated :)

Add Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated on Goodreads here

For the first time in comics format, Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated will be a journey through Freddie’s life; from his childhood in Zanzibar, through his formative years in England, to becoming the rock star, known and loved by millions around the globe. The story is told in his own words, with each chapter giving a glimpse into the many facets of his life.Written by Tres Dean (All Time Low Presents: Young Renegades), the graphic novel will give true insight into the many experiences that helped shape the young Farrokh Bulsara and his compelling existence, both on and off stage—that was the life of Freddie Mercury, Lover of Life, Singer of Songs.

Artists: Kyla Aiko, Robin Richardson, Safiya Zerrougui, Tammy Wang, and Ames Liu
Writers: Tres Dean, Camilla Zhang
Letterer: Troy Peteri
Editor: Camilla Zhang
Book Designers: Tyler Boss and Jason Ullmeyer.
Cover Art: David Mack

The Out Side

Available wherever books are sold
ISBN-13: 9781524880125
ISBN-10: 1524880124
176 pages, paperback, 6″ x 9″

On Sale Now! Nominated for the 2024 Eisner for Best AnthologyBookshop.org || uk.bookshop.org

Books a Million || Wordery || Barnes and Noble || McNally Robinson || Amazon || Indigo || WalmartYou can also ask your local book/comic store to order The Out Side :)

Disclosure: I am an affiliate of Bookshop.org (US link only, not UK) where your purchases support local bookstores. I will earn a commission, at no cost to you, if you click through and make a purchase.

ALA Booklist (starred review)
“A gorgeous anthology with stories from 29 trans and nonbinary artists.” -Sarah Rice
YALSA's 2024 Great Graphic Novels for TeensAmerican Booksellers Association
"The Out Side is such a beautiful anthology that shares trans and nonbinary stories from all walks of life. All the authors approach their stories in very different ways; when it comes down to it, they all feel so interconnected and warm." -Olivia Hoover, Book Passage

Add The Out Side on Goodreads here

In this vibrant and affirming comics anthology, 29 trans & nonbinary comic artists share their personal journeys of self-discovery and acceptance.Featuring the work of Sage Coffey, Kyla Aiko, and Coco Ouwerkerk, The Out Side: Trans & Nonbinary Comics includes 29 creators' tales of self-love and affirmation and detailing their experiences with gender and identity. Originally published as a successful Kickstarter campaign, this expanded edition includes comics by Dana Simpson (bestselling author of Phoebe and Her Unicorn), Aidyn Huynh (Snailords), Wren Chavers, and more.Equal parts encouraging, comforting, and life-affirming, The Out Side is a love letter to the trans and nonbinary community, designed to inspire anyone who may be struggling with their own identity and to help educate those who seek greater understanding. As artist Julia Kaye writes in the book's introduction: "I’m so glad this book exists. It’s a loud proclamation of our existence in the face of a culture that has for too long ignored our experiences."

Contributors: Kaz Fantone, Coco Ouwerkerk, Julie Fiveash, Cyrus, Min Christensen, Ashi, DaToonie, Vixtopher, Wren Chavers, Matteo Montero-Murillo Mel Valentine Vargas, Kyla Aiko, Nasr Bin Safwan, Dana Simpson, Lae Louie Schäfer, Veronica Jane, Dashi, Aidyn Huynh, Al Acevedo, Wey Song, Sam, Liam Coballes, Lake Fama, Lucas James, Sage Coffey, Zhen, Maddie Tacobus, Jam Aden, Tara Madison Avery & Mike Sullivan, Julia KayeOrganizers: The Kao, Min Christensen, and David Daneman
Cover Inks and Design: The Kao
Cover Colors: Min Christensen

Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated

Available wherever books are sold
ISBN-13: 9781940878867
ISBN-10: 1940878861
136 pages, hardcover, approx. 10.3″ x 6.6″

On Sale Now!Massive Bookshop (indie bookshop that ships worldwide)

Barnes and Noble || Amazon || Indigo || McNally Robinson || WalmartYou can also ask your local book/comic store to order Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated :)

Add Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated on Goodreads here

For the first time in comics format, Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated will be a journey through Freddie’s life; from his childhood in Zanzibar, through his formative years in England, to becoming the rock star, known and loved by millions around the globe. The story is told in his own words, with each chapter giving a glimpse into the many facets of his life.Written by Tres Dean (All Time Low Presents: Young Renegades), the graphic novel will give true insight into the many experiences that helped shape the young Farrokh Bulsara and his compelling existence, both on and off stage—that was the life of Freddie Mercury, Lover of Life, Singer of Songs.

Artists: Kyla Aiko, Robin Richardson, Safiya Zerrougui, Tammy Wang, and Ames Liu
Writers: Tres Dean, Camilla Zhang
Letterer: Troy Peteri
Editor: Camilla Zhang
Book Designers: Tyler Boss and Jason Ullmeyer.
Cover Art: David Mack

FAQ

I am anti-NFT and anti-crypto. You may not use my art for AI, and do not contact me about making NFTs.

What programs do you use to letter?
It depends on the project, but for traditionally published comics/graphic novels I typically usually use Adobe InDesign to lay out text and Clip Studio Paint or Adobe Illustrator to draw speech balloons and sound effects.
Adobe software is the industry-standard in traditional book publishing.If you're looking for non-subscription model alternatives, Affinity Publisher is similar to Adobe InDesign and Affinity Designer is similar to Adobe Illustrator (and both go on sale frequently).

What digital brushes do you use?
In Procreate I usually use brushes from these packs.
Matt's Sketching Set
Trisketched Ink Brushes
I also usually use Procreate Pencil and Derwent (both are included with Procreate).In Clip Studio Paint, I usually use these brushes:
Content ID: 1850295 文字ペン (second pen) from 主線と文字ペン pack by 塩分ウホウホ
Content ID: 1730414 6pencil-soft by Rollermets

Resources (all links open in new tabs)

All About Literary Agents (comic creator specific)
Danielle Chuatico and JesnCin's "Comic Creator's Guide to Literary Agents" (downloadable pdf, pay what you want)
Wendy Xu's "Why You Should Get an Agent and How to Present Yourself to One: A Primer for Comic Artists"
Victoria Ying's "Finding an Agent as a Graphic Novelist"

How to Put Together a Graphic Novel Pitch
Go Komikimok!!'s "Comics Creator's Guide to Graphic Novel Pitch Packet" (Part 1)
Go Komikimok!!'s FAQ About Pitch Packets (Part 2)
Go Komikimok!!'s How to Submit Your Pitch to Publishers, Editors, and Agents (Part 3)
Ethan M. Aldridge's GN Pitch Packet Twitter Thread
Literary Agent Maria Vicente's "What to Include in a Graphic Novel Pitch Package"
Victoria Ying's "Scripting a Graphic Novel"
Victoria Ying's "What's in a Graphic Novel Proposal?"

Complete graphic novel pitch packets usually have these components (there's no standard order):
› Sample Cover Page
› About the Book (back cover copy, page count, b&w/color, genre, demographic, comp titles)
› About the Author (include relevant publishing credits)
› 5 to 20 Completed Sample Pages
› Sample Script
› Character Descriptions and Drawings
› Full Outline/Synopsis
› Extras (concept sketches, thumbnails)

Lettering Tips
Sara Linsley's Manga Lettering Wiki
Sara Linsley's Manga Lettering Scripts for Adobe InDesign
Nate Piekos's "Lettering Tips"
Nate Piekos's "Comic Book Grammar and Tradition"
Phil Christie's "The Basics of Manga Punctuation"
Phil Christie's "Manga Balloon Basics"

Kyla Aiko Profile Picture

Kyla Aiko is an Eisner-nominated cartoonist and editor who is always looking for good soup noodle recommendations (the spicier the better).She's currently working on Foxlight, her debut middle grade graphic novel about a lost fox spirit and the nonbinary noodle maker who helps him find his way home.

Contact

Kyla Aiko is represented by Jennifer Azantian. Please direct all literary work inquiries to her at Jen (@) AzantianLitAgency.comOther inquiries: hello (@) aikosmith.com

Upcoming Books

Foxlight - Feiwel & FriendsThe Out Side: Trans & Nonbinary Comics
Nominated for Best Anthology in the 2024 Eisner Awards
- Andrews McMeel, On Sale Now (Order Here)
Freddie Mercury: Shadows Illuminated - Z2 Comics,On Sale Now (Order Here)I also letter comics! Series I've worked on include Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Dandadan, Love's in Sight!, Gokurakugai, and Everything is Fine.

Shows

Upcoming
⊹⊹SPX Small Press Expo 2024
⊹⊹ › Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center
⊹⊹ › September 14 and 15, 2024
Past
⊹⊹TCAF Toronto Comic Arts Festival
⊹⊹Pride In Panels 2023
⊹⊹Small Press Expo 2023

Clients

Macmillan, VIZ Media, HarperCollins, Penguin Random House, Jaw Drop Games, Character Media, and more


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