Koktail Kids: the backstory


The Koktail Kids are a set of characters that evolved out of Kite Dream, a graphic memoir that I am currently engaged in writing and drawing. Inspired by a set of cocktail accoutrements from the 1940's, I have been doodling Koktail Kids in the margins of address books and daily planners for decades. Kite Dream, a story about my life as an artist contained some sorrowful material; disease. death and loss. Koktail Kids became an alternate voice, lighter and playful through which I am able to describe the darker aspects of Kite Dream.

However, a few months into Kite Dream, the Koktail Kids began to rumble and protest, striking out on their own in projects that surprised me. A is for Albatross: An Alphabet of Murder and Mayhem with the Koktail Kids. is the first Koktail Kids project. The months of the year followed and they are running around now everywhere. Through and around all this the Koktail Kids are threading their own stories. They are irrepressible.  

An Alphabet of Murder and Mayhem created some characters; the gun toting lamister, the safe cracking yegg and my favourite, the Koktail Kid's version of the Ancient Mariner. In Kite Dream, the Koktail Kids represent me, my sister, her children and a small circle of friends and they do still but the Koktail Kids rampaging through my studio and beyond are rowdier, exuberant and uncontrollable.

I hope you enjoy the journey, because they sure will.


Riley & the Koktail Kids