Vanessa Bettencourt is the artist, author and comic creator of the webcomic series Notfrombrazil. She is also the creator of Polly and the Black Ink graphic novels and the illustrator of Heir of Scars epic novel series.
Vanessa loves creating fantasy and new worlds full of epic quests, magical items, breathtaking spells and fantastical creatures, including most recently brave little insects marching towards a gigantic army of evil spiders.
She learned drawing and painting by attending Fine Arts and Live Drawing classes. Born in Lisbon, Portugal, Vanessa moved to the U.S where she now lives in Chicago by the lake with her husband Jacob Falling, author of the Heir of Scars series. and all their imaginary characters.
Together they are Violet West Entertainment which agglomerates all their creative projects.
Always drawn to books, stories and art, she started to write and draw very young, experimenting as much as possible with all sorts of art mediums and techniques to achieve new results and better ideas.
"I loved to draw with pencils. When I was a child the black and white illustrations from the Lord of the Rings inspired me for life."
Participating in contests and attending local shows helped her to develop a stronger connection with people, gather fans and knowledge in her search of what best defined her as a storyteller and an artist.
It was crucial as she was growing as an artist to share her process with her community, using her art to educate and appeal to people, regarding the importance of knowledge and imagination.
As a teacher since 2003, her contact with different ages and different minds helped her to become better with her goals and to be part of creative projects, designing stages and co-writing and illustrating shows and books for children.
"I want my imaginary worlds, creations and stories to become real and my characters to come to life so they can be part of other people's lives."
As a freelance artist Vanessa illustrated national and international covers and books for several publishers since 2006, independent authors and is now also working on her personal projects. (Portuguese cover for Graceling and Fire by Kristin Cashore)
As both independent authors, Vanessa and her husband are just now starting publishing their projects under the banner of their own publisher: Violet West Entertainment.
The following titles can already be acquired in Kindle or paperback formats. Although Vanessa has been illustrating fantasy for most part of her life she developed some comic book projects.
"It's funny that I decided to publish the most recent projects first and that they are graphic novels."
Polly and the Black Ink written and illustrated by Vanessa Bettencourt is her debut Graphic Novel. The first arch of the story will be completed with a total of five volumes.
Vanessa is the author and illustrator of the free webcomic Notfrombrazil.com. The web series began in 2012 as a long distant relationship creative way to communicate with her fiance. It's been online since 2016 now. A transatlantic comic adventure made closer with time. Now she draws about her daily struggles and adventures in full color and humor of her new life, with her better half, in a new country, writing and creating art.
"But my passion is fantasy and I continue to illustrate my husband's novels."
Heir of Scars I epic fantasy series by Jacob Falling (her husband's pseudonym) and illustrated by Vanessa Bettencourt.
In the summer of 2016, Vanessa taught a Workshop on "How to Draw a Comic Page," to children and their parents. A fun co-op activity with families at the Duncan Branch Library in Alexandria opened to all ages.
Vanessa has been participating in artist alleys with her husband and her art and their books since June 2016.
Events and publications:
September 2019 - Titans Island - Sally's Quest - Graphic novel release
June 1 2019 - Book Signing - Challengers Comic book Chicago
January 2019 - Polly&Paws 4 a Better World campaign (4 Seasons - stickers fundraising for the Lincoln Zoo)
2018- One year of Schoolism self-taught classes ( Andrew Hou, Bobby Chiu, Victoria Ying, Thomas Fluharty, Nathan Fowkes, Jason Seiler and watercolor )
December 11 2018 - Published Beyond the Cliff and Courage
July 15 2018 - Published Volume II NotfromBrazil
March 31 2018 - Awesome Con Artist Alley Washington DC
March 11 2018 - Beatley Library Alexandria - Book signing
December 4 2017 - Published Polly and the Black Ink volume 5
October 9 2017 - Del Ray Street Festival
September 23 2017 - Beatley Library Alexandria Fall Festival - Live Drawing
September 16 -17 2017 - Small Press Expo
September 9 2017 - Hooray for Books - Local Author Book Signing
June 2017 - Awesome Con Dc Artist Alley Washington DC
May 2017 - Hooray for Books - Workshop "How to draw a hero and a villain"
May 2017 - Hooray for Books - Local Author Book Signing
August 30 2017 - Published Polly and the Black Ink volume 1
August 28 2017 -Published Polly and the Black Ink volume 4
February 2017 - Katsucon Artist Alley Maryland
April 25, 2017 - Published Polly and the Black Ink volume 3
February 5 2017 - Published Polly and the Black Ink volume 2
September 10 2016- Published Polly and the Black Ink volume 1
July 2016 - Workshop "How to draw a comic strip" Duncan Branch Library in Alexandria
June 2016 - Awesome Con Artist Alley Washington DC
Past events in Portugal:
September 2015 Book Signing (as an illustrator) - Publisher Verbo - Author Vera de Vilhena
July 2014 Lisbon Book Fair (as an illustrator) - Publisher Verbo - Author Vera de Vilhena
December 2012 Festas de Almada - Musical - Stage designer
August 2012 -2013 - A turma - educational project and show for kids including children's book.
July 2009 -2011 Book Fair (as an illustrator) - Publisher Objectiva
Teacher - 2002 to 2014 - Escola Poeta Joaquim Serra, Escola Louro Artur
"My office is the world and my mind. The world provides me with inspiration, and my mind creates from the puzzles of notes and ideas born from ideas. It's a non-stopping process where nothing is discarded or abandoned for it might play a starting point sooner or later."
Contact me for an event at your location with Polly and the Black Ink a free drawing demonstration.