Upcoming

click the panels for more information

Isotope Award 2011

2011's Isotope Award for Excellence in Mini-Comics winner is Katie Longua! More details here.

Isotope Comics University

The Isotope proudly presents an on-going series of comic classes taught by Ed Luce, the award-winning creator of the fantastic Wuvable Oaf series. Our first round of classes are designed to help take your existing book to the next level, focusing on the ins-and-outs of guerrilla publishing and DIY printworking, practical conventioneering, inventive marketing/branding, effective merchandising, and so much more on a shoe-string budget.

New Semester Registration This April

.
.

Twitter Feed

James Sime's mobile feed.
click to follow him on twitter.

No public Twitter messages.

The Isotope Communique
Daily news and updates by Personality James Sime and the Isotope Staff
Celebrate Those You Love, San Francisco!

Is there another city so full of amazingly nice people doing so many wonderful things as San Francisco? Here at the Isotope we feel just so lucky to have all these around! And once a year we get to celebrate all those fabulous denizens, wild visionaries, indie businesses, and awesome characters that make this city so great in the SF Bay Guardian’s Best of the Bay reader’s poll.

Don’t be shy, San Francisco… it’s time to show some love to the people and places that make us all smile! Please do take a moment with me to honor those things that make SF such a fantastic place to live. There really are lots of wonderful eligible businesses and delightful staff members who make all our lives happier who will no doubt appreciate being showered with love and told how much it means to us to have them all around. Who wouldn’t want to see our friends at Image Comics and also WUVABLE OAF creator Ed Luce getting a Best of the Bay award this year?!

Celebrate the things you love, San Francisco. Vote here:
SF Bay Guardian’s Best of the Bay Reader’s Poll 2013

Here’s some people and places we think make San Francisco so very wonderful: (UPDATED: 9/20)

FOOD & DRINK
Best New Restaurant – Noir Lounge
Best Splurge Restaurant – Millennium
Best Late-Night Restaurant – Sauce
Best Romantic Restaurant – First Crush
Best Food/Drink Festival – Domingo de Piña @ Smuggler’s Cove
Best Food Cart – Sanguchón Peruvian Food Truck
Best Pizza – Patxi’s
Best Small Plates – Sauce
Best Burger and Fries – Jardiniere (shhh… it’s a secret!)
Best Barbecue – Brick Pig’s House
Best Indian Restaurant – Chutney
Best Thai Restaurant – Jitlada Thai
Best Breakfast – Lunchpad
Best Appetizers – Boiled Peanuts @ Boxing Room
Best Lunch – Catfish Po’ Boy @ Brenda’s French Soul Food
Best Dessert – PB&J @ Sauce
Best Food/Drinks Blog or Site – EaterSF
Best Cup of Coffee – Blue Bottle
Best Cup of Tea – Samovar Tea Lounge on Page
Best New Bar – Brass Tacks
Best Dive Bar – Hi Dive
Best Swanky Bar – Smuggler’s Cove
Best Wine Bar – Rosebowl Florist & Wine Bar
Best Brewery – Speakeasy
Best Creative Cocktails – Kirsten Baldock @ Isotope
Best Bloody Mary – Zeitgeist
Best Butcher Shop – Fatted Calf
Best Cheese Shop – Gourmet & More Store
Best Chocolatier – Christopher Elbow

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Best Movie Theater – Balboa Theatre
Best Rep Film House – Vortex Room
Best Performance Space – SF Jazz
Best Film or Arts Festival – Noir City
Best Museum – The Exploratorium
Best Art Gallery – Cartoon Art Museum
Best Artist or Collective – Ed Luce
Best Zine – Wuvable Oaf
Best Publishing House – Image Comics
Best Record Label – Prank Records
Best Band – Class Actress
Best Singer-Songwriter – Bob Mould
Best DJ – DJ Bearzbub
Best Overall Dance Party – Breakfast of Champions
Best Rock Club – Thee Parkside
Best Jukebox – Molotov’s
Best Gay Bar or Club – The Stud
Best Drag Show – It’s 5 O’Clock Somewhere: A Drag King Variety Show
Best Drag King or Queen – Art Kahn
Best Burlesque Act or Show – Pickles Kintaro & the Hubba Hubba Review
Best Open Mic Night – The Riptide
Best Literary Night – Writers With Drinks

SHOPPING
Best Overall Bookstore – Borderlands Books
Best Used Bookstore – Green Apple Books
Best Comic Book Store – Isotope
Best Magazine Selection – Kayo Books
Best Record Store – Grooves Inspiralled Vinyl
Best Men’s Clothing Store – Artful Gentleman
Best Local Designer – Phoenix Zoellick
Best Shoe Store – Gimme Shoes
Best Furniture Store – Inside Modern
Best Toy Store – Super7 Store
Best Bike Shop – Market Street Cycles
Best Skate Shop – Purple Skunk
Best Gift Shop – Paxton Gate
Best Quirky Specialty Store – Costumes on Haight
Best Flower Shop – Rosebowl Florist & Wine Bar
Best Place to Buy Lingerie – Dark Garden

CITY LIVING
Best Street Fair – BYO Big Wheel
Best Hotel – SF Sleep
Best Tourist Attraction – Comic Rockstars Toilet Seat Museum
Best Tour – Alcatraz
Best Spot for Kids – Chabot Space and Science Center
Best Overall Blog – Squidlist
Best News Blog or Site – SFist
Best Style Blog or Site – CurbedSF
Best Nonprofit Organization – BayKids
Best TV Show – Check Please
Best Radio Station – SomaFM
Best Tattoo Parlor – Body Manipulations
Best Tattoo Artist – Tex
Best Local Animal Rescue – Rocketdog Rescue
Best Pet Groomer – All Creatures Healing Network
Best Alternative Healing – Jaden Rose Holistic Bodywork
Best Bicycle Repair – Matt Aimes @ Market Street Cycles
Best Salon – Hair of the Gods
Best Hairstylist – Donnelle @ Hair of the Gods
Best Massage – Justin Hall
Best Amateur Sports Team – Bay Area Derby Girls
Best Public Sports Facility – Circus Center San Francisco
Best Beach – Baker Beach
Best Public Park – Golden Gate Park
Best Park for Dogs – Lafayette Park
Best Skate Spot – Golden Gate Park on a Sunday
Best Surf Spot – Ocean Beach
Best place to Watch the Sunset – Golden Gate Bridge

Please do feel free to add your own wonderful suggestions in the comment section below, we always want to know about the amazing people and places that we might be missing out on! And don’t delay on getting those votes in, the poll ends September 25th.

SF Bay Guardian’s Best of the Bay Reader’s Poll 2013

The Future Will Be Aromatic

c/o Isotope bartender Kirsten Baldock for the EAST OF WEST party with Nick Dragotta this weekend.

Are you ready for the Post-Apocalypse Now? We are.

Jazzing with Jim Woodring & Bill Frisell

We here at the Isotope couldn’t be more excited about our new neighbors over at SFJAZZ, especially when they’re throwing events as exciting as this. Live jazz and live art… by Frisell and Woodring?! We wouldn’t miss this for the world!

Here’s more details from our friends at SFJAZZ:

Bill Frisell’s third night as Resident Artistic Director is a delightful live multi-media collaboration between Frisell’s Beautiful Dreamers trio and influential Seattle-based cartoonist and animator Jim Woodring. For this special performance, Woodring will create live digital illustrations, projected on the Miner Auditorium video screen, to accompany and inspire the music.

Preview this great Frisell-Woodring collaboration here

Jim Woodring is an acclaimed artist and animator, known best for his character FRANK, who has appeared in a number of graphic novels and in his previous multi-media collaboration with Frisell, 2006’s Probability Cloud. The Comics Journal named two of Woodring’s creations to their list of 100 Best Comics of the Century, and his previous work with Frisell resulted in a United States Artists Fellowship.

Behind guitarist Bill Frisell’s affable demeanor there’s a steely-willed artist whose creative ambitions span the continent. Since his early days on the Downtown Manhattan scene in the mid-1970s, when he became a key collaborator with John Zorn, Frisell has steadily expanded his sonic purview, staking a claim to an ever-greater range of media, material, and musical traditions.

Bill Frisell & Jim Woodring Live @ SFJAZZ
Saturday, 9/14/13.
2pm Family Matinee & 7:30pm Evening Show
SFJAZZ Center. 201 Franklin Street @ Fell
All ages. Cost: $5-10 (family matinee) $25-65 (7:30PM show)

More info here

What a great way to spend the weekend! I’ll definitely be in attendance at that Beautiful Dreamers evening show. Come join us, won’t you?

Inspirational Moments

Today is a day filled with inspirational moments.

Is there anything more fantastic than when, suddenly, everything falls perfectly and neatly into place like the universe had always planned it exactly that way and was just waiting for you to figure it out? This is one of those times. The artwork featured here by the amazing Steve Bryant (of ATHENA VOLTAIRE fame) perfectly captures that feeling right now. Flying high, for the future.

Today is a day to be inspired by beautiful humans who make beautiful things.

Post Apocalypse Now

Our favorite new series of 2013 is definitely the post-apocalyptic western EAST OF WEST and we couldn’t be more excited to get to celebrate the launch of the collection with the book’s amazing artist… Nick Dragotta!

Nick’s art has dazzled us for a few years now with mystic arts and high mutant weirdness on X-STATIX PRESENTS: DEAD GIRL (with Isotope favorite Peter Milligan), explored the uncomfortable underbelly of the Marvel Universe on VENGEANCE (with another IsoFave Joe Casey), dazzled our poor little minds on FF (with yet another favorite ’round these parts Jonathan Hickman), transported us back to yesteryear on CAPTAIN AMERICA: FOREVER ALLIES (with comics legend Roger Stern), and always always brings a smile to our faces with his awesome site HOWTOONS.

Come celebrate with us! Our beloved Kirsten Baldock is crafting up a palette-stunning cocktail list based on Nick’s work in honor of the evening. Mister Dragotta promises a sketchbook-filling Four Horsemen styled evening… and we’re hoping he’ll bring in some original art for us to buy as well!

Isotope Presents: Nick Dragotta
EAST OF WEST Vol. 1 Launch Party
Saturday, September 21st 2013
8pm – Midnight

Are you ready for the Post-Apocalypse Now? We are!

Thinking About Yesterday & Tomorrow

Today is a day of happy reflection.

Few artists fill my world with inspiration more than Fabio Moon of DAYTRIPPER, CASANOVA and BPRD: VAMPIRE fame. This above scene is from a book that is very near and dear to our hearts here, Fabio’s and our very own Kirsten Baldock‘s graphic novel SMOKE & GUNS.

Today is a day to be inspired by beautiful humans who make beautiful things.

Dave Johnson Brings Drink & Draw to SF

Multiple award winning comic artist Dave Johnson is famous for his stunning covers on 100 BULLETS, THE PUNISHER, BATMAN, FURY MAX, DEADPOOL and hundreds more. He did full interiors on one of the best Superman stories ever SUPERMAN RED SON. He’s known his amazing animation projects including BATMAN BEYOND, LEGION OF SUPER HEROES, BEN10, FLATULENE, and even a heartbreakingly unproduced MICRONAUTS series. He hosted one of the Isotope’s craziest barcrawls ever, DAVE JOHNSON NEEDS PIRATES TIKI TOUR.

And he, along with fellow artist Dan Panosian, launched a SoCal tradition in 2005 that has spread through the country like wildfire and spawned two gorgeous hardcover collections (here and here)… THE DRINK AND DRAW SOCIAL CLUB.

And now San Francisco, it’s your turn to celebrate this fine tradition alongside the founding father and one of the industry’s best artists! The right Reverend Dave Johnson is calling out to all local artists to gather up your fistful of Rapidographs, Conté Crayons, General’s Charcoals and Prismacolors for an evening of good cheer, great tunes and amazing live art here at the Isotope. Featuring amazing Rev Dave inspired cocktails by Kirsten Baldock.

DAVE JOHNSON DRINK & DRAW SAN FRANCISCO
Saturday, August 10th, 8pm – Midnight
@ the Isotope

You drink and you shall draw!

Dash Shaw @ The Isotope

Let’s all celebrate the NEW SCHOOL, shall we? We’re hosting this event in conjunction with the professors and students of The California College of the Arts brand new MFA in Comics graduate program. And we’re also toasting Fantagraphics Books’ latest offering from the amazing Dash Shaw!

NEW SCHOOL explores adolescent angst, sibling rivalry, infatuation, alienation, and teenage disillusionment in Dash’s quirky bold line style with an explosion of color. This surreal, emotional coming of age opus revolves around two brothers and the setting of ClockWorld, a crazy new amusement park that recreates historical events like the Kennedy assassination in graphic detail. Weird, awesome stuff!

Before our party, don’t miss Dash doing the public speaking thing at CCA’s Comics In The City lecture series, and then come join us as the Isotope’s own Kirsten Baldock mixes up a Shaw-inspired cocktail list that is sure to dazzle! We’re looking forward to introducing you all to Dash, he’s a really fantastic guest who we love having in. Here’s a happiness-inducing write-up from last time he was here that will make you smile.

We’ll see you on the 26th, no number two pencil required!

Comics In The City

As you’ve probably heard, San Diego Comic Con in full swing this week, definitely biggest pop culture show in the country. And SCDD has swelled to massive proportions over the last few years (130,000 in attendance) and each year we hear more and more talk that Comic Con is all about movies and video games and tv shows… but not so much the comics anymore.

But lucky for we San Franciscans that comic love that seems to be dwindling in other places is *definitely* not missing here! In fact, our friends at the California College of the Arts have been infusing the city of San Francisco through July with amazing comic creators all month long for their awesome public lecture series – Comics In The City, hosted in conjunction with their MFA in Comics graduate program.

You all know how we love those smart and unique comic events, and we couldn’t be happier to see CCA doing something really special for comic lovers here in SF this month. And as you’d expect from the fine folks behind CCA’s Comics Department, this lecture series has been incredibly well received, with the month kicking off with Cathy Malkasian and James Robinson. And we still have two more to go!

Jason Shiga – Friday, July 19th
Dash Shaw – Friday, July 26th

What better way to celebrate the always vibrant San Francisco comics scene as well as honor this awesome new program and it’s students? Why… with an Isotope after-party of course!

Get out your #2 pencils to block out that date on your calendar, stay tuned for more details, and get ready for the return of one of the Isotope’s favorite comic creators!

Isotope + Music Video = Magical

Check out this magical music video from the central Connecticut based indy hip hop star ILLUS, featuring the Isotope and lots of beautiful SF locations.

Known for his uplifting, thought-provoking, “boom-bap HIPHOP for the people” and has been recording music and illustrating comics since 1991. We love his positive groove and DIY ethic. And is makes us happy knowing that can-do attitude has resulted in over 250,000 records sold with no label or traditional airplay. This song, “Magical,” is off his latest album FAMILY FIRST. Grab it on the iTunes store here.

Tuesday through Friday

11:00 am - 7:00 pm

Saturday through Sunday

11:00 am - 6:00 pm

Email Your Thoughts

Call Us 415.621.6543