Svetlana Chmakova (Russian: Светлана Шмакова) (born October 7, 1979) is a Russian and Canadian comic artist. She is best known for Dramacon, an original English-language (OEL) manga spanning three volumes and published in North America by Tokyopop. Her other original work includes Nightschool and Awkward for Yen Press. She has been nominated for an Eisner Award twice. Previously, she created The Adventures of CG for CosmoGIRL! magazine and the webcomic Chasing Rainbows for Girlamatic. Though born in Russia, she immigrated to Canada, where she graduated from the Sheridan College Classical Animation program, in 2002. She then began to publish her manga on the Internet.
Body of work
Dramacon is Chmakova's first full-length comic, telling the story of Christie Leroux, an aspiring teenage comics writer, and her experiences at her first anime convention. She attends the convention with her artist boyfriend Derek Hollman, but soon finds herself attracted to a mysterious, sun-glassed cosplayer named Matt Green.
Other works by Chmakova include The Adventures of CG for CosmoGIRL! magazine and the Chasing Rainbows and Night Silver webcomics. Her art also appears in Mangaka America and Flight.
On February 24, 2007 at New York Comic Con, Yen Press announced that they would be publishing Nightschool, a new original manga by Chmakova.
At New York Comic Con on October 10, 2014, Yen Press announced that they would be publishing Awkward, a new original comic by Chmakova. Brave, a sequel to Awkward, was announced on April 25, 2016.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution described Dramacon as "surprisingly true-to-life (and occasionally harrowing) emotional drama and humor ... Creator Svetlana Chmakova doesn't skimp on character development or plot progression. Her art is top-notch as well, outstripping even many of her Japanese inspirations with clear storytelling and polished technique."
Dramacon was nominated for an Eisner Award in 2007.
Awkward was named as one of School Library Journal's Top 10 Graphic Novels of 2015. It was also named by YALSA on their list of the 2016 Great Graphic Novels for Teens. Amanda M. Vail of The Mary Sue said "it needs to be on the shelves of every school and public library."
Awkward won the 2nd Annual Dwayne McDuffie Award for Kids' Comics and was nominated for an Eisner Award.