Oh sweet backflipping baby biscuits. Be gentle, you lovely, lovely Homestucks.
Advice to the mid-career cartoonist who has failed to build an audience
I’ve been publishing comics for coming on twenty years now. It’s hard to pinpoint a start-date, as like many cartoonists I’ve just been drawing my whole life, but sometime around ‘95 would be when I began putting out ‘zines…
Why is feminism important? Because for some men trying to imagine not having a penis is like trying to imagine not being alive anymore.
"Wait, how can there just be nothing there? That’s weird. I can’t handle it. Quick, let’s found an entire social/religious/political structure on bullshit that lets me never have to think about it again."
(I know a lot of you are tired of my Miss Officer and Mr. Truffles griping - please skip this post if you’re one of those people!)
An interesting tidbit about the kickstarter:
I noticed one of the stretch goals mentioned that Squishables had “agreed to make them a prototype” of a Mr. Truffles…
I’ve debated adding to this discussion because it’s pretty transparent who I am and I think there was enough - if not bad at least grumpy - blood and awkwardness that weekend but whatever. I shared a table at the Vancouver Comic Arts festival with MOaMT and they were really inconsiderate, if not full-on rude. You’ll notice on the website for the show that they aren’t listed. That’s because the space - a 1/4 table, 2 feet - was given to one of their contributors, Kaitlin Sullivan. I was the other 1/4, along with my friend Jeremy who had the other 1/2. As was fairly clear from how things transpired and because I heard them say it themselves, Kaitlin decided to turn her space into a Miss Officer table to promote the upcoming Kickstarter rather than use it for her indie comics. This meant bringing loads of merch and two additional people to man the table - primarily Erika Zofchak, the executive producer who was for all intents and purposes the one with the table, as Kaitlin was barely there comparatively. I will restate that this was only a 1/4 table’s worth of space for 3 people, and a smaller table they stuck behind us to make buttons and stuff on.
For the first day I got squished by all their stuff into what was really more like 1/6th rather than the 1/4th I was supposed to have. I didn’t mind too much because I’m pretty much a nobody and they were this thing that got huge on tumblr so whatever, but it made the first day at a convention I’ve done for 3 years and have always had a great time at a really negative, disheartening experience. I didn’t have any new product this year, I know that no one knows who I am, and I had traveled pretty light because I knew I’d only get 1/4 table worth of space, but I wasn’t prepared to be as marginalized as I ended up. I’d have felt worse if my other tablemate hadn’t been the guy I always do these things with, because at least sitting mostly on his side was more comfortable than it would have been with a stranger.
The second day when they came to set up they had started putting tshirts on my displays, and even though they attempted to squish back down to their day 1 footprint when I complained I’d had enough. I didn’t want a repeat of the non-presence I had on day 1, so I had the organizer come by and look. She confirmed their overreach, told them to fix it, and thankfully ended up just moving them to a vacated half table anyways and my sales and interraction with people increased like 900% now that people could see me. So it ended up okay.
I don’t begrudge them their desire for promotion, and they certainly seemed legitimately enthusiastic and nice to the people who recognized them, and the kid they brought to make buttons was a sweetheart, but Zof and Kaitlin just did not think or care at all about how bringing easily a full table’s worth of stuff to a 1/4 table would inconvenience anyone else. It was inconsiderate and made me feel insignificant and terrible
So, yeah. To hear rumours that they’re being a little shitty to one of their people (assumedly antithetical to their mandate of supporting indie talent) and that their planning has been somewhat sub-par are not particularly surprising to me, because I experienced both first hand.
Hey Vancouver, Canada! I’m going to be at VanCAF this weekend (May 24-25). I’ll have some copies of the Tomorrow Girl on hand, as well as some other goodies, so you should drop by. I’m also going to be on some cool panels:
IN THE BEGINNING: WORLD-BUILDING AND SETTING
Sunday, May 25th 12:00 PM - 12:45 PM
Featuring Aaron Diaz, Jeph Jacques, Sam Logan
"From the frost-tipped turrets of Castle Starlight to the gritty urban imps of Futropolis, comics are capable of taking you away from it all. But how do you build fantastical worlds that still feel real and inhabitable? Where’s the perfect balance in magical realism? And how many dragons is maybe too many dragons? Join world-building professionals as they discuss the tricks of their trade."
BROUGHT TO LIFE: CHARACTER DESIGN
Sunday, May 25th 3:00 PM - 3:45 PM
Featuring Aaron Diaz, Kadi Fedoruk, Tyson Hesse, Steve Rolston
"This panel, featuring talented and experienced character designers, will demonstrate some of the core concepts of designing a character—from a purely aesthetic viewpoint to the rich imaginings of character-driven details. Learn how to create characters of different body and facial builds while still retaining strong cartooning ideals."
It’s going to be a grand time, I hope to see you there!
I’m hosting the world building panel! Come see me try and ask these dudes questions!
The Champions of Caelondeooo
With Transistor being out I remembered that I had this sitting around unfinished, so I finished it. Sorta.
I made a new blog just for, y’know, general reblogs and likes and stuff. You know, all the things people actually use this dumb website for. It is pandabaron. You will most certainly see more activity over there, so feel free to follow it, perhaps instead of this one? presidentskeleton is just going to be for things I make myself.