Writer Vanessa Shealy and Artist Leah Lovise

Leah Lovise and Vanessa Shealy grew up in Oklahoma City, OK. In the beginning we had an obligatory friendship (our mothers are best friends) but when we grew up we decided to join forces to make some art. In 2012 Leah approached Vanessa with an idea to create a television show for kids called Doo Dad’s Moon Pad. Through countless emails and phone calls, the project eventually evolved to a four part comic book called Couri Vine.

Our goal for COURI VINE is to create an action packed adventure story about a young person hiding from her disability, who discovers that her difference can become her superpower. We are personally inspired by this goal.  Vanessa is the mother of a child with autism, and Leah’s father was wheelchair bound due to muscular dystrophy.  These two heroes in our lives have confronted us with fears, challenges and endless admiration.  We hope this science fiction analogy will empower children and adults who live with difficulties of all kinds.


Leah Lovise is an illustrator, graphic designer, motion graphic artist, and animator. Her projects include animation for Warner Independent Pictures, post-production graphics for The History Channel, motion graphics for a variety of television and video productions. Leah is a contributing illustrator for the Austin Chronicle. She also works in UI/UX design for iOS and Android mobile Apps. Leah is passionate about developing visual ways of approaching solutions. She lives in Austin, Texas and can be found at


Vanessa Shealy is a writer and actor whose full length plays include Tea in the Afternoon, American Drum Circle, and One, Two, Whatever you do. Her short plays include A Captive Audience, Cataracts, Let Me Take Care of You and Naked. Her work has been published by Estrogenius Press, Indie Theatre now, and Playscripts. She has also won awards for television writing from the Nickelodeon Writing Program and Scriptapalooza. Vanessa is a lover of the solo show and live storytelling genres and frequently performs in or curates festivals. She lives in New York City and can be found at