Saturday, September 17, 2016

Becoming an artist

I wanted to tell you about my worst gig as an illustrator. It's a true story for all you aspiring artists chasing the dream to draw for a living.

Years ago, when I was young, dumb and full of hope, my older brother who's a web-designer asked me to help him out with a webpage he was putting together for a client. I was desperately trying to get some work as a comic artist, but I would have drawn anything just to make a buck. Then my brother told me that the webpage he worked on was for a piercing studio.

I give you all a minute to process this.

As you probably guessed, they were doing intimate piercings and they wanted to put up drawings of the piercings instead of photos because... well... everyone who's ever had the pleasure of seeing an intimate piercing up close knows why. But 300 Swiss Francs for a couple of genitals? Sounds like a job for me! This was serious money for an artist who was drawing for 20$ a page at that time, but was actually living on social welfare, drawing like a mad man in his little studio/bedroom/living room/music room/broom closet shithole of an apartment. So there I was a couple of days later, drawing these super expressive pierced penises and vaginas (no boobies), being a professional artist, living the dream, baby! I thought "this is how Van Gogh must have felt. Real sacrifice to create ART!".

I was very proud when other piercing studios stole the drawings from the internet and used them on their sites. Research for reference photos was a bit traumatic though. I will never get those pictures out of my head until I do my last dying breath, but it was totally worth it - I'm drawing for DC now, working on characters like Batman and Deadshot and New Super-Man and if an idiot like me can do it, you can do it too!

So to all you art kids: If you ever feel like googling "genital piercings" (which I'd strongly advise against) and some really nicely drawn peckers and coochies pop up - that's probably me! I mean... my drawings. Yay! And if you ever feel like sending me links to those pictures with the question: "Did you draw this?" Please don't. Let it remain a mystery.

Anyway, I'm posting this embarrassing story for the struggling comic artists, actors, musicians, tap dancers, mathematicians, whatever you are out there who work in shitty jobs, dreaming of one day doing what they love professionally. Always remember: there are these damn geniuses who come right out of the gate blowing minds and being amazing, and then there's the rest of us who have to practice their craft for years and in the meantime draw dick pics and other weird shit and flip burgers and mop floors and drive cabs until they're finally good enough to do what they're supposed to do (and then they do it with all their heart because they never ever wanna go back to THAT place).

Keep it up! I mean... keep it going. Go for it. You know what I mean.

And if someone wants to share his worst job, feel free. Although I'm pretty sure I won the worst job competition.

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