Thursday, January 28, 2016

Carolyn Belefski - Nominee for Best of D.C.

I am nominated again for Washington City Paper's Best of D.C. Readers Poll in the category of "Best Visual Artist." Last year, as well as the year before, I got runner-up. Let's see if we can beat that. It only takes a couple seconds to vote. I'd appreciate if everyone took a moment to vote. Thank you!

The poll closes March 1 at 11:59PM EST

Carolyn Belefski has been nominated for Best Visual Artist
Carolyn Belefski is the writer and artist of the comic strip Curls at She is constantly improving her skills and touring the east coast appearing at comic conventions and art shows.

Monday, January 11, 2016

David Bowie and Instagram

The news of David Bowie's death hit everyone this morning and I felt like I needed to do a Curls tribute illustration to honor his life. In all actually, I don't know much about Bowie. Sure, I've heard "Under Pressure" (the song resurfaced for me when My Chemical Romance covered it) and "Heroes" and even sought out to reenact the tunnel scene from The Perks of Being a Wallflower in Fort Pitt, but I never really went out of my way to get into Bowie.

Having Instagram is allowing me to showcase one panel comics and supplemental material for Curls. I may get ideas that I don't want to interrupt the storyline for or simple one panel jokes or thoughts and Instagram is a good outlet for all those reasons. The other week, I posted my first "one panel Curls" and Free Comic Book Day reposted it on Facebook -- the reception was interesting -- reaching nearly 1,000 likes, several shares, and comments.

While illustrating this David Bowie art I listened to his last album, Blackstar, released this past Friday. I think it's awesome that he planned a final album to his fans and created art up until the very end. It makes me feel how sad I will be when one of my favorite musicians dies. I have respect for David Bowie as an artist. I only wish I'd got into Bowie earlier, but better now than never.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Recap: Curls Studio's Year of 2015

2015 has been an excellent year for Curls Studio creators Joe Carabeo and Carolyn Belefski, so we decided to celebrate with a year-in-review recap blog post!

One of the major events that happened to Carolyn this year is that she had the opportunity to draw cartoons for The White House. The White House Office of Digital Strategy approached Carolyn with the concept of creating health care comics for the Affordable Care Act. First Lady Michelle Obama posted one of the comics on her Instagram and Twitter accounts and it received over 16,000 likes on Instagram in less than a day. Carolyn’s #GetCovered comic series was covered by several news outlets including The Washington Post, CBR, The Blaze, The Patriot Post, ComicsDC, and more.

Carolyn also launched her first Kickstarter campaign and it was a success! We were able to publish a book of every Curls comic strip ever created. Thanks to our awesome backers for pledging to make this project come to life. If you missed out on the Kickstarter, you can still purchase the Curls book from the store at

RISE: Comics Against Bullying (Northwest Press) published a story Carolyn illustrated, written by Amber Love. "Left Behind" and is a bittersweet tale about what happened after a young woman had unclothed pictures of herself circulated through school. It’s about her mother, former friend, and dog trying to move on living life without her.

We made a total of 13 live event appearances this year. Early in the year we did a presentation to kids at Stone Branch School of Art. Then we exhibited at Smudge in Arlington, Virginia. We traveled to Pittsburgh for Indy Comic Expo and the New Jersey Meadowlands for East Coast Comicon. We also exhibited at Creator Con in Maryland. We celebrated Free Comic Book Day at our local store and hit up major conventions including Awesome Con in DC, Small Press Expo, Baltimore Comic-Con, and  New York Comic Con.

Because of media attention from The White House comics and my Curls Kickstarter campaign, several outlets wanted to do profiles on me. VCUarts Newsletter and Northern Virginia Magazine (Best of NOVA issue) both did print articles on the news and featured my artwork.

Carolyn was also a runner-up for the third year in a row for Best Visual Artist in Washington City Paper's 2015 Best of D.C. Reader Poll.

Curls Studio exhibited our Black Magic Tales comics at the cARToons exhibit at Politics and Prose in Washington, DC. Carolyn sold a Curls print from that art show to someone visiting from Beijing! Even with the Curls Kickstarter rewards -- Iceland, Canada, Australia, United Kingdom, Luxembourg... Curls has gone further than we've physically gone for sure!

Black Magic Tales was published in Magic Bullet, Washington, DC's comics anthology. Issues #10 and #11 were released this year.

During New York Comic Con, we recorded a Carolyn and Joe Show podcast from the Wyndham New Yorker hotel room we stayed at. We had an electrifying conversation about Nikola Tesla while staying in the actual room that Tesla lived in for ten years until his death in that very room!

Carolyn and Joe Show participated at the inaugural DC PodFest and did a live show with a special guest -- you may remember him from WrestleMania 30 -- Shocked Undertaker Guy, Ellis Mbeh!

On Halloween, Carolyn organized the third annual Cartoonists Draw Blood drive with Troy-Jeffrey Allen. Donors gave blood to the American Red Cross and then the Washington, DC chapter of National Cartoonists Society and other local cartoonists drew for the donors as a "thank you." The event was a success and we saved many lives. We already have a date confirmed for next year -- it's Saturday, October 29, 2016.

So much has happened this year and we've been busy. We hope to create more for you in 2016 and all the years to come!

Happy New Year from Curls Studio!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Brand Identity for Stable Hands

Before the year ends, I wanted to display a project I completed earlier this year – identity design for Stable Hands Pet Care and Services. This project included designing and arranging printing for business cards and letterhead, as well as their services chart.

Stable Hands provides mid-day dog walks, pet sitting, and overnight stay services. Lara is an expert on the farm and specializes in horses and horse show grooming (she even has a Bachelors of Animal Science to prove it).

The logo design incorporates hands in an uplift horseshoe for luck and protection with the profiles of a cat and dog inside. The colors are friendly, approachable, and professional.

Thank you Lara and David for the opportunity to work with you to create your brand and congratulations on becoming a new independent business. If you are looking for pet care in the Virginia Beach area, please consider

Available for Freelance Work
If you are interested in my illustration and/or design skills, please email Carolyn Belefski at View my portfolio:

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Black Magic Tales published in Magic Bullet #11

The latest issue of Washington, DC's Magic Bullet comics newspaper hit the streets earlier this year. Look for your free copy at many bookstores, restaurants, shops, and other establishments in and around the Washington, DC area.

In this issue, Joe Carabeo and I tell the tale of world famous criminals Roxy Monroe and Dean Casanova in "Black Magic Tales: Cashing Out." 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

RISE #2: Comics Against Bullying

Earlier this year Northwest Press published RISE: Comics Against Bullying anthology. Issue #2 included a story I illustrated, written by Elizabeth Amber Love. 

"Left Behind" and is a bittersweet tale about what happened after a young woman had unclothed pictures of herself circulated through school. It’s about her mother, former friend, and dog trying to move on living life without her. 

Proceeds from the book benefit organizations including GLAAD, Prism Comics, and Stand For The Silent. I hope you'll be able to pick the book up or find it at my table next year touring the comic conventions -- all the copies I have are already signed by Amber and I.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Carolyn and Joe Show - LIVE at DC PodFest 2015

This coming Saturday, November 7, 2015 from 10PM to 11PM you can join the live studio audience to experience a recording of the Carolyn and Joe Show taking place at the inaugural DC PodFest.

Ellis Mbeh "Shocked Undertaker Guy" will be joining us live as especial guest, so be there to catch a glimpse of his famous face. At WrestleMania 30 after Brock Lesnar defeated The Undertaker, his expressive face was plastered all over the WWE Network and spread all over the internet, living on in memes and beyond.

I'm interested in learning more about Ellis, as he is one of WWE's biggest fans, a powerlifter, a husband, and more. He seems to be an interesting person beyond having an ultimate WrestleMania moment!

The event is taking place at The Wonderbread Factory, 641 S Street, NW, Washington, DC. You can purchase tickets to the full weekend to have full access. Tickets to attend the Carolyn and Joe Show are $10 (plus $1.34 service fee):