A Philosophy in Spite of Words: Philosophical musing infuses much of my extended writing, and truly I loved my German philosophers better when I thought they were saying more than they actually were (particularly Nietzsche). Regardless, I was able to forge a philosophical viewpoint that guided my first novel.
It may be difficult on first pass to see where my comics fit into this scheme, since they developed concurrently to both my philosophical and artistic interests. Yet I have come to see cross-current influences everywhere in my work; and where I exalt the nonverbal over the verbal with much verbosity in my novel writing, it is only to underscore the importance of paradox and irrationalism, which may be more readily identified in my comics.
My decades-long foray into the world of alternative comics was never as a lover of comics; and therein lay the problem. Even where the comics of others aspired to be intellectual or surreal, they failed in ways not dissimilar to my failures: The medium was incapable of carrying the message envisioned; or at least as far as linear storytelling goes. Artwise, the picture faired better since the inescapable conventionalities in storytelling can be set aside or ignored.
I choose humor as my primary vehicle, and gags rather than multi-page story arcs. However, alternative comics, where humor is sought, is usually not funny, or at least not as funny as cleverly written skits on Saturday Night Live in its heyday. Artists who create alternative comics with humor as a goal do not strike me as particularly gifted humorists, as their humor is largely antisocial and juvenile, and highly repetitive in these pursuits. This comes to the delight of its uncritical readers who, I now realize, were never my readers. I do not mean to beat up on these artists, only myself in not being able to read the room. Yes, there are Standards and Practices, with quill-tipped pens and all the rest, but Edward Gorey was never a favorite of alternative comic book buyers because they did not get him, which makes one realize that alternative, as a term, is not as alternative as one might wish to think.
Comic Archive: This comics portal contains three collections. The first two include my two longest running published comic strip series (and there are many comics here to read). A third collection provides examples of my best developed comic ideas. This last collection intends to put my varied (and inconsistent) output in best light.
Confused people say the darnest things: Profiles in Confusion celebrate differently-abled thinkers, and you either find these strips puzzling, or absurdly funny. There are very few agnostics when it comes to my work. These comics ran in a local college paper and replaced the blender kitty strip in all but name. They were faster to make, and in some cases the picture came before the caption, but not always.
(2005-2006) Archive 1, Archive 2, Archive 3, Archive 4, Archive 5
(2006-2007) Archive 6, Archive 7, Archive 8, Archive 9
(2007-2008) Archive 10, Archive 11, Archive 12, Archive 13, Archive 14
(2008-2009) Archive 15, Archive 16, Archive 17, Archive 18
(Miscellaneous) Archive 19, Archive 20, Archive 21, Archive 22, Archive 23
One man’s reinvention of the comic strip: Blenderkitty.com was named after my comic strip, which in turn was named after a friend’s cat. At the time of the website’s formation, I had reservations about the name, but I went with it since the comic strip had a modicum of traction in 2002. The strip ended and the name stuck.
Herein lies a generous selection of comic strips from 2000 to 2005. Blender Kitty, Candy Medicine Bear, and occasional interloper Wayne The Endangered River Otter dominant the early strips. The later strips were not rangebound by furry, quasi-domesticated mammals who smoke unfiltered cigarettes and express regrettable opinions.
I have recently added a sixth archive page which includes sixty-six strips forming my only serail tale featuring my namesake characters. I alternately refer to the story as Dust Bunny Motel or Paint-By-Murder.
Archive 1, Archive 2, Archive 3, Archive 4, Archive 5, Archive 6
A Sampling: These pages share works from my unpublished comics output prior to Blender Kitty, including the Epic Dermis series. As much of this material fades into memory, I am less able and willing to dwell on it. Similarly my interest in making comics goes back further than 1989, even into the 1960s, but my perservation of those decades was not so good. Still, a little bit of that too will be seen.
Excerpts from my Xeric Award-winning comic Epic Dermis n1 begin this selection of pages.
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