A wide shot of a ceramics studio, featuring students working with pottery wheels and other tools.

Alum to Release Debut Graphic Novel after Shipping Delay on Bankrupt Freighter

Emil Ferris (BFA 2008) was set to release her debut graphic novel My Favorite Thing is Monsters until her shipment was stranded on a cargo freighter owned by the bankrupt shipping company Hanjin. Ferris worked on My Favorite Thing is Monsters 16 hours a day for six years during which time she contracted West Nile virus and became paralyzed. Ferris told Entertainment Weekly, “All the way through, bad things happened to me in the process of making this book. And you know what? They always ended up being better for the book in the end. So I’m just trusting.” While paralyzed she came to SAIC to revitalize her art career. She explained to Entertainment Weekly, “I wheeled my wheelchair downtown [to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago] and I got a full scholarship. They really said, 'Let’s just do it.' So I got all this support from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago to start my life over again...” The cargo freighter holding her graphic novel, which was arrested by the Panamanian government, has been released and My Favorite Thing is Monsters is now for sale. The Chicago Tribune described the graphic novel as, "...frankly, a masterpiece by Emil Ferris" and that "Ferris has that gift, and learning that My Favorite Thing is Monsters is her 'first, but not last, graphic novel' seems almost too good to be true."  Read the full review of My Favorite Thing is Monsters on Chicago Tribune.