I’ve received a few inquiring emails lately about the doodles that I post here and I thought I’d respond with a post.
I started drawing fairly recently—in the last two years—and it happened when I discovered alt-comics. At first it was trying to capture Snoopy (though Schulz is a mainstream figure, he is a god in the alt-comics universe—think of post-punk power-pop being impossible without the Beatles). I found that I was pretty bad at doing that, but it gave me an excuse to give up doing copies.
I draw mainly because of the ritualistic nature of the process. I do it everyday for a half-hour or so, usually at the coffee shop, and I’m not sure why but it’s the most calming part of my day. I’ll begin with pencil, followed by inking with a sharpie. Occasionally, fine-tipped Micron pens are handy for detail. Sometimes, I’ll experiment with one of those marvelous Faber-Castell brush pens that you can pick up for two bucks at the art store (It’s a pen with, yes, an actual brush for a tip; you can vary the line thickness with it). But I still don’t quite have the hang of how to use it right.
My big pet peeve is: rulers. I never use ‘em because I like the wonkiness and imperfections of free-handed lines. I’m ridiculously low-tech and luddite about the computer bit too, and never manipulate the image after scanning. But I do reduce it significantly. (The originals are usually a full 8 ½ by 11 size.) Which tightens up the image and renders most of my mistakes and mess-ups invisible when I finally post it.