Drawn to Comics: In Praise of Patreon

Webcomics are usually thought of as a free medium. Fans get to enjoy them as long as they have access to the internet. It’s also a medium that doesn’t have a lot of the same gatekeeping that traditional printed comics have. Because of that, webcomics are more diverse, more groundbreaking and more radical. I love webcomics. I read around thirty of them on a regular basis and then catch up on some others every now and then. They’re the best and they have some of the most talented and creative comics makers in the world behind them.

The proliferation of webcomics recently has allowed for an explosion of terrific comics by and about women of color, queer people, trans people, people with disabilities and people who live at the intersections of those identities. And because, like I said, they’re free, people belonging to those groups who previously didn’t have a chance to see themselves in any media at all, are now able to see themselves represented for the first time. This leads to an excellent increase in positive representation, but also it leads to a problem on the creator side of things.

Art by Anna Bongiovanni.

Art by Anna Bongiovanni.

This spread of free webcomics has also lead to, unfortunately, that reading these comics for free is an inalienable right. Many writers and artists who belong to those marginalized identities find freedom in webcomics; often, they also often find themselves not being able to make money from all the hours and hours of difficult work they put in. That’s where Patreon comes in — one of my favorite things on the internet right now.

Patreon is sort of like a virtual tip jar, or a Kickstarter that keeps on going each month. Instead of paying five dollars for stickers, $15 for a digital version of a book or $25 for a physical copy, you pay a few dollars each month, and even usually get some bonus content. Patreon isn’t only for comics creators, but that’s what I use it for. I like to support the people who make comics that make my life better, and to let them know that I value their work.

Even if you don’t make a lot of money, you can still support your favorite creators. You can pay as little as $1 a month to help make your favorite comics happen and help show your favorite creators that you appreciate the hard work they do. We really need to put our money where our mouths are if we want to support comics by trans people, queer people, women, poc and people other marginalized identities.

Here are all the people who I support and links to their Patreon pages — if you support other people or have your own page, feel free to please put them in the comments!

Nia King is a writer, cartoonist and podcaster who’s making a really terrific podcast where she interviews QTPOC artists. I’ve previously reviewed her book of interviews from that podcast.

From Witchy by Ariel Ries.

From Witchy by Ariel Ries.

Ariel Ries is a writer and artist who makes the brilliant and beautiful magic Asian fantasy webcomic Witchy. I couldn’t recommend Ariel’s comic more, seriously, go check it out.

Blue Delliquanti makes the really terrific sci-fi webcomic O Human Star about some gay and trans robots (and humans).

Chelsey Furedi makes the absolutely adorable and super funny Greaseinspired 50’s queer high school comic Rock and Riot.

Anna Bongiovanni makes the amazing comic here at Autostraddle, Grease Bats, about two queer bffs and their new trans gal friend who’s naturally my favorite character.

From As the Crow Flies by Melanie Gillman

From As the Crow Flies by Melanie Gillman

Melanie Gillman is the absolutely amazing artist who works with colored pencils to make the stunning and terrific comic As the Crow Flies about a queer Black girl and the trans girl she befriends at a very white Christian girl’s camp.

Mildred Louis is one of my favorite artists, and makes the stupendous and absolutely beautiful webcomic Agents of the Realm, about a bunch of girls (most of whom are woc and queer) who become magical girls in college.

Kate Leth is one of my favorite people and comics creators. She writes great comics like Patsy Walker, AKA Hellcat and Vampirella and makes these really wonderful diary comics for her Patreon.

Cathy G. Johnson is a terrific writer and artist who I profiled and interviewed about her upcoming bookNo Dogs Allowed, about an awesome misfit middle school soccer team.

From Aatmaja Pandya's Travelogue

From Aatmaja Pandya’s Travelogue

Aatmaja Pandya makes my favorite calming webcomic, Travelogue, and also makes other comics. Her comics are like the most relaxing parts of beautiful fantasy rpgs.

Wendy Xu is the artist for another of my favorite webcomics, Mooncakes, which is written by Suzanne Walker. Mooncakes is about two Asian-American young adults, one a witch and one a non-binary werewolf. It’s great.

Mari Costa is the person behind not just one but two webcomics I love. She recently started the fun cat-starring fantasy quest comic Roji, and has been making Peritale, a fun, funny and cute fairy tale comic for a while now.

Victoria Grace Elliot is another creator who makes a webcomic about witches (surprise, surprise, I like a lot of webcomics about witches), the absolutely beautiful Balderdash!

E Jackson makes Pretty Heart Bouquet, a kind of new webcomic about a young trans girl who becomes a magical girl. It’s very very very cute.

The greatest trans girl comic of all time, from Trans Girl Next Door.

The greatest trans girl comic of all time, from Trans Girl Next Door.

Kylie Wu makes my all-time favorite webcomic about being trans, Trans Girl Next Door. She’s hilarious and sparkly and amazing. This one comic in particular is a little NSFW, but it’s, in my opinion, the pinnacle of trans comicdom.

Marguerite Bennett is my current favorite writer in all of comics. She writes terrific and brilliant characters (including trans women like Alysia Yeoh and Sera) in books like DC Comics Bombshells, Angela: Queen of Hel, InSEXts,  and Red Sonja.

Valerie Halla is not only the colorist for Octopus Pie, but she also makes the super beautiful and really queernormative webcomic Goodbye to Halos.

New Releases (May 4)

Beasts of Burden: What the Cat Dragged In

Legend of Wonder Woman #5

New Suicide Squad #20

Supergirl Cosmic Adventures in the 8th Grade TP

Rat Queens #16

The Wicked + The Divine #19

A-Force #5

Black Widow #3

Empress #2

Gwenpool #0

Howard the Duck #7

Scarlet Witch #6

Spider-Gwen #8

Star Wars: Poe Dameron #2

Bob’s Burgers #11

Giant Days #14

Space Battle Lunchtime #1

Steven Universe & The Crystal Gems #2

Vampirella #3

Welcome to Drawn to Comics! From diary comics to superheroes, from webcomics to graphic novels – this is where we’ll be taking a look at comics by, featuring and for queer ladies. So whether you love to look at detailed personal accounts of other people’s lives, explore new and creative worlds, or you just love to see hot ladies in spandex, we’ve got something for you.

If you have a comic that you’d like to see me review, you can email me at mey [at] autostraddle [dot] com.

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


Mey Rude is a fat, trans, Latina lesbian living in LA. She's a writer, journalist, and a trans consultant and sensitivity reader. You can follow her on twitter, or go to her website if you want to hire her.

Mey has written 572 articles for us.


  1. If anyone is feeling wealthy there is an 800pg hardcover Gotham Central omnibus out this week as well.

  2. I love Patreon and think its a really fantastic platform for artists&support a few folks on there. I like you analogy of the tip jar, very fitting.
    Thanks for sharing this.

  3. What a wonderful round-up! I support some of these cartoonists but there’s SO MANY MORE that I’d like to support in the future!

    And seriously, Patreon is SO IMPORTANT for cartoonists! Thank you for talking about it!

  4. I really really want to like Giant Days. It’s so funny and clever and cute and the art is vibrant and expressive, but each time I read an issue it leaves a bad taste in my mouth. This is due mostly to the series’s treatment of Daisy, the lone LGBT character. Ever since she was revealed to be attracted to girls, she has been used only as support for the other two girls. The series places a primacy on heterosexual relationships, as if they are inherently more important.

  5. Here are some of the folks I support:

    -Pam Wishbow and her amazing illustrations

    -Jen and her comic Thunderpaw

    Some of the folks I’m hoping to be able to support in the future:
    -WolfSkullJack and her awesome art

    -Austin and his comic NightPhysics

    -Christianne and Taneka and their comic Full Circle

    And here’s a link to mine! <3

  6. I love this! Part of my goals to support the revolution is to put my money more directly into supporting the work of Q/TPOC, and I love comics, so this list is perfect. Thanks Mey!

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