Sit down with Manchester, UK-based writer and cartoonist Beck Kubrick as we discuss what the Lower Your Sights project means to her, her contribution to the anthology, and her thoughts on the unifying power of art.
Q: What does this project mean to you?
Beck: I’ve been lucky enough to never personally experience the horrors of war but it’s been
something that’s constantly been on the periphery of my life. I grew up in a military family and
war stories were swapped super causally- it wasn’t until many years later that I realized how
horrifying these stories were. The war in Iraq began months after I was born, my neighbors,
whom my comic is about, were holocaust survivors- the terrifying concept of war was a running
theme for the people around me. It wasn’t until I was around twelve and I started volunteering
with the elderly and I really heard their stories, as individuals and victims of various wars, that I
really started to begin to understand war as something other than a vague and amorphous
In school, when we learnt about wars; it felt very clinical; facts and figures and dates- it painted
victims’ experiences with broad brushstrokes and didn’t do justice to the incomprehensible
experiences of individuals, countries, entire generations and so many more. This project,
hopefully, means sharing some of these stories in more personable ways and providing
tangible help with the proceeds; being part of that is invaluable.
Q: What is your contribution to Lower Your Sights? (Short Story, Pinup, Etc.)
Beck: I have contributed a 4 page comic called ‘In Spite Of It’ about my elderly neighbours, who were holocaust survivors. They were effectively my surrogate grandparents and taught me so many vital lessons as a child. As with many inter-generational stories, I feel a little bit like I’m playing a game of telephone trying to remember the right details. Ultimately, the most important part of their story is untouched, amongst a world at war, in a literal camp, surrounded by people filled with hate; they fell in love.
Q: In addition to supplying food and essential supplies, Voices of Children also provides art therapy to help kids cope and overcome the stress, anxiety, and trauma of living in war conditions. Do you believe art has the power to heal?
Beck: I think art is intrinsic to human beings as a form of storytelling and expression in all forms, from literal cave paintings to mindless doodles. I think art, especially art from kids- unfiltered by expectations and rules is a really powerful and a really pure communication of what’s going on
in their heads. Art heals us in that everyone has a lifetime of experiences, traumatic or
otherwise, and art grants us the ability to communicate them in a way that doesn’t require
words or definitions- it can transcend these limitations. A lot of post-war art is abstract rather
than representative and I think this is because part of the healing art gives us the ability to
create a tangible expression outside of our own minds that may be, just like our thoughts,
messy or unclear- allowing pain and hurt to become separate from us.
About Beck Kubrick
Becca “Beck” Kubrick is a writer and cartoonist from the UK. They are into horror, teen
angst and overthinking. Their other works include Coby Alone (2021).
Beck’s work will be featured in the short story, In Spite of it, from our upcoming Ukrainian benefit anthology, Lower Your Sights. You can see more of Beck’s work here!
Mad Cave Studios and Voices Of Children are teaming up to publish Lower Your Sights, a graphic novel anthology, to raise awareness and proceeds for children impacted by war. Earnings from the book’s sales are going directly to the Voices of Children foundation.
Lower Your Sights is available for preorder (FOC on August 29th 2022), and officially in stores on September 14th, 2022. You can pre-order your very own copy of this benefit anthology here.