Just look at our girl go! We couldn’t be more proud.
Stupid relevant analogy time:
Taking on any creative project, especially one with such an epic scope as Birth of Venus, I tend to feel a little like Mara here. Just look at this chick– She’s like an ant trying to haul off a dead animal carcass all by her lonesome. Sure she has some superpowers (untested superpowers, mind you!) but she is defying the odds stacked unfavorably against her, and it has NOTHING to do with her own self-preservation… unlike myself and said creative projects. Oh sure, us creative types all like to think that our story is going to be the one that makes a difference; the one that will go down in history books and might even CHANGE THE WORLD.
And to that I must simply ask, “Really?”
Don’t get me wrong. I’m just as guilty as anyone when it comes to this, for why else would we continue along our dogged paths of certain lack-of-grand-success? After all, there isn’t much money in this biz for all of us (or so I am told) and I don’t exactly see the TMZ vultures circling Adam Hughes or Frank Cho driving around a Lamborghini Liefeld-style, but the one thing we all have in common is our love for the craft and the notion that we are leaving our mark on this world. Agreed? I think this is a healthy enough attitude to have in order to push on through and, you know, find some happiness in what we’re doing. But if one is so deluded by the notion that some form of success or compensation is a CERTAINTY simply because their shit is better than everybody else’s and that their work matters more than the rest… then they’d best prepare for some disappointment. Healthy competition is always a good thing to spur one onward and upward, but to treat the entire run of your career like the heavens have parted only to shoot you to earth in a beam of light so you can showcase your particular brand of art just seems wrong to me. Even the most faithful of apostles ought to approach their mission with some humility, otherwise who will listen?
From my shoes, I witness more positivity from comic creators that simply enjoy one another’s camaraderie and treat conventions and appearances more like reunions with old pals rather than “part of the job”. I’m sure it’s a little of both, but would you rather engage a shiny, happy person like Doug TenNapel who is brimming with enthusiasm… or that one guy (you know the one) that holds their own work as too sacred for the likes of your feeble understanding and would rather not be wasting their time in your presence? Wouldn’t a stronger sense of COMMUNITY in the industry (us small indie guys and Big Two exclusive contractees alike) serve fans and creators more strongly than COMPETITION driving us all into our own separate corners?
I’m not saying that I’ve got this business all figured out and I’m barely what one would classify as a “professional”, but these are truths that I am either learning vicariously or experiencing in my own life. And what do you expect from the blog of a web-comicker anyway? If I’m going to rant on my tiny soapbox here about anything, it might as well be some sobering truth about where I’ve come from, what I’ve learned and what I’m trying to achieve with my artistic career. I’m just still foolishly optimistic enough to think that what you’re reading here might maybe, you know, change the world. Or something.