For vast stretches of my life, I have been self-publishing my own zines, comics and books. As my abilities improved and technology followed suit, my micro publishing endeavours became dependent on computers; from colouring and polishing to layout and design. My last zine series ended in 2011 and by that time, I had sucked the joy out of making words and pictures- it had become laborious.
From 2011-2013, I started and stopped on what was essentially the same concept: an epic autobio/fantasy. The problem was that each time I did a page, I was married to the idea that it had to be cleaned up on the computer and formatted perfectly. Also, the style I was adopting wasn’t original. I was trying to build a straight-ahead graphic novel and be something I was not.
So I let it all die. I relented and decided that maybe I was done with making books. I moved onto other things. I customized toys. I made posters and one-off ephemera. I did woodworking, making my own bows and arrows. And then, I revisited a world I had neglected for years: making videos.
As I developed my YouTube channel in early 2015, I quickly found an outlet and the joy I had once gotten from self-publishing was fulfilled by creating my own TV universe. Since both my time and finances were limited, I limited my productions to episodes that could be shot, edited and released all from my smartphone. The rigid parameters made me creative. I developed a real passion for low-fi, hand-made storytelling. If the ideas are good, one doesn’t need the bells and whistles.
Over the past few months, as my TV style has coalesced and begun to find its niche, I’ve found myself also looking back to my childhood roots where I wrote stories and drew them by hand. I’ve fallen in love with the world of Dada and the original punk zinesters and their raw style. As such, I think I’ve finally arrived at a style of art that suits me. I’ve found my niche.
So, beginning today, I present my “Gluttonous Geographic” Scrapbook, a way to tell my own life story in food in an abstract and fantastical way. It’s part scrapbook and part graphic novel, a Dadaist manga of my own design.