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Meandering Realms:         Unconventional Comics Anthology
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(the kitty in the logo)
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Filipa Estrela (any pronouns)


I am a 28 year old  queer cartoonist, crafter and youth educator. In all my work, I seek to create stories that draw inspiration from my mixed Cape-Verdean/Macanese/Portuguese heritage and blend the everyday with a dose of myth, magic and wonder. I work in a variety of mediums, from comics to needle felting, but the common thread between anything I make is that it is sourced from joy and whimsy. I love playing with color, fantasy, and anything that glitters.

College Education

M.F.A. in Cartooning - Center For Cartoon Studies, May 2021
B.F.A. in English with a Creative Writing Specialization - UMass Amherst, May 2015   
Continuing Education

Storytelling FLOW course - Sequential Artists Workshop, October 2018

Graphic Novel Workshop -  Center of Cartoon Studies, August 2018

Intro to Arts Management course  - UMass Amherst, September-December 2017

Special Skills and Trainings

Crafts skills: needle-felting, wet-felting, clothes sewing, embroidery, knitting, crochet, origami, mold-making, resin work, drawing, comics

Comics skills: digital lettering, inking, color flatting

Proficient in digital art programs: Clip Studio Paint, Adobe Photoshop/Indesign

Trained in informal education practices, e.g. free and loose part play theory, developmental stages of children and play, collaborative teaching

Trained in museum practices, e.g. exhibit development, program development, visitor experience


Fluency in English, Portuguese, French and Cape Verdean Creole

Comics Publications

Anthologies and Collaborations:
  • Meandering Realms: an anthology on Unconventional Materials Comics- editor and contributor (Upcoming 2022), Broad Concerns: Collaborative Comic (June 2020), Threads That Connect Us: AAPI Comics- editor and contributor (May 2020), Snapshot: Nostalgia Anthology- editor and contributor (Nov 2019), Monster Parade- editor and contributor (Oct 2019), Fantology:Origins- contributor (Oct 2019)

Self-Published Comics:
  • Tiny and Soft— comics thesis (May 2021), See-Through (July 2020), Grow (June 2020), Rioteens: The Official Magazine (May 2020), Catxiety (March 2020), You Are Cosmic (Jan 2020), How to Make a Shoople (Nov 2019), Sparrow & Crow (Nov 2019), Companion (Sept 2019), Anxiety (June 2019), Ghost Cat (Jan 2019), Catharsis (2018)

Other Published Comics:
  • 7Days Newspaper- Year of the Rat (Feb 2020)

Curated Art Fairs

Lowbrow Craft Fair - Northampton, MA, December 2018

Flywheel Comics and Zines Fest- Easthampton, MA, November 2018

Queer Makers Summer Solstice Market - Easthampton, MA, June 2018

Monthly Amherst Winters Farmers Market - Amherst, MA, December 2017- March 2018

Queer Makers Winter Solstice Market - Easthampton, MA, December 2017

SES Shopping Extravaganza - Sunderland, MA, November 2017

Art in the Parks - North Providence, RI, October 2017

Teaching Experience

Create Comics Workshop Co-Teacher - Online, July 2021
  • Ran week-long intro to comics workshop on  for the Center for Cartoon Studies for adults and teens on Zoom

Comics Workshop Assistant Teacher - Online, July, August 2020
  • Assisted in two week-long comics workshops for the Center for Cartoon Studies for adults
  • Workshops assisted: Create Comics and Playing with Comics
  • Gave a lecture on “Unconventional Materials Comics”, maintained class website, maintained zoom call

Zine Workshop Teacher - Online, July 2020
  • Ran 1 hour zine making workshop for elementary age students for a library community

Saturday Morning Cartooning Club Assistant Teacher - Center For Cartoon Studies WRJ,VT, Oct 2019- March 2020
  • Assisted and guided students ages 9+ during monthly cartooning club

Elementary Afterschool Lead - Amherst Montessori School Amherst,MA January 2018- August 2019
  • Ran afterschool program based on creative play and STEAM activities for students grades 1-5
  • Facilitated 3-week long LEGO summer camp program
  • Developed and ran 1-week long Comics Workshop winter camp program

Arts and Crafts Specialist - Camp Norwich, Huntington,MA, June-August 2017

  • Developed and ran arts and crafts programs for campers grades K-2, 3-6, and 7-9, programs ran throughout the camp’s 2 week sessions during which groups of 10-20 campers visited art cabin for 45 minute long time periods, program activities included painting, stamp carving, weaving crafts, nature art, wet felting and more
  • Trained camp counselors in running various arts and craft activities
  • Organized and managed arts and crafts cabin, ordered inventory following a budget, reset space between groups
  • Wrote and submitted lesson plans that met expectations of the Program Director

Americorps Museum Educator - Providence Children’s Museum, Providence, RI, Sept 2015- August 2016

  • Created 11 month STEAM-based lesson plan that strengthened social skills and encouraged free play. Activities included sewing 2D to 3D objects, practicing storytelling skills through comics and stop-motion animation, problem solving and engineering using various recycled, found, and natural materials
  • Facilitated an afterschool learning program at Boys and Girls Club Southside with a team of 3, we taught 2 groups of 18-20 children, ages 7-10, 4 times per week during the Fall-Spring months and 3 groups of 18-25 children, ages 6-11, 4 times per week during the Summer months
  • Planned, developed and facilitated 6 educational interactive programs for museum visitors ages 1- 11.
  • Created temporary museum displays including Rainy Play Day themed puppet case featuring the Betty Huestis Marionettes collection, a world globe with tiny knitted animals for New Year’s Ball drop and a series of 17 ramp “window” boxes featuring 50 needle felted mythical creatures in sceneries made out of recycled materials
  • Assisted in museum exhibits installations
  • Served as a playguide and birthday party host, facilitating play and learning opportunities for families visiting museum exhibits
  • Organized museum “Family Night” dinners for Americorps outreach families. Tasks included creating signage, managing inventory of supplies, designing decorations, developing a take-home activity booklet, informing and inviting families

Site Supervisor and Group Leader, School Age Child Care -- HRYMCA, Northampton, MA,  Sept 2016-June 2017

  • Oversaw and assisted 2 Group Leaders in charge of 10+ children each
  • Created and taught STEAM based curriculum activities
  • Called attendance roll, administered first aid, managed time-schedule, processed paperwork, organized cabinets
  • Corresponded between parents, school staff, and YMCA staff

Volunteer English Foreign Language Teacher -- Sal, Cape Verde, July-August 2013
  • Worked with 5 Cape Verdean nonprofits dedicated to keeping children off the streets sites: Ludoteca,Nos Kasa, Castelos do Sal, Africa 70 Community Center and the Jorge Barbosa Community Library
  • Created one 4-week and two 5- week beginner level lesson plan and appropriate materials
  • Taught 5 groups of 10-20+children, ages 5-12, and one group of 7-10 senior citizens


Nightmare before Christmas--  Main St Museum, December 2019
  • interpretive dance routine of “This is Halloween” as Jack Skellington

Rocky Horror Picture Show-- Main St Museum, October 2019
  • performed role of Brad during a live screening

CCS Community Talent Show, Main St Museum, September 2019
  • comedy live-drawing routine as a tutu-wearing Pikachu

All Copyrights Reserved to Filipa Estrela 2023