The first panel of the conference Saturday was titled “Comics As Autobiography”
On Stage, L to R: Deborah Nelson, U of C English Department, Aline Komnisky-Crumb, Carol Tyler, Phoebe Gloeckner, and Justin Green.
This panel was quite inspiring. (As was my seat. In the photo above, the audience row in front of me is left to right: Chris Ware, R. Crumb, and Art Spiegelman. To my right was Alison Bechdel.)
I wasn’t certain if the webcast of panels would be archived for later viewing, so I was furiously capturing quotes around my sketch of this panel. Here’s what that mess ended up looking like:
When I got home, I transcribed what I caught, organized by speaker.
Justin Green, creator of Binky Brown Meets the Holy Virgin Mary, considered the first graphic memoir and perhaps the first Graphic Medicine text:
My friends went to Vietnam. I had survivor guilt. I had to wage my own war, so I looked within. I didn’t want to present myself as a hero but as a specimen.
In Rome, I saw an R.Crumb comic. It was a call to action.
On computers and comics: I was thinking, why would so many cartoonists get together? One reason would be a funeral…you can’t get (certain inks) anymore… the other reason would be a marriage. Computers give unlimited powers to your mind.
OCD is one of the few behavioral disorders that makes the world a better place… Wouldn’t you want your air traffic controller to have OCD? Your pharmacist?
Comics is a humbler cobbler’s type medium…. we are all master bullshitters… Do your last panel first. That’s a great way to start.
I started separating, seeing myself as a character, which helped me to have some empathy for myself.
Creation is a destructive process. You destroy yourself. Then you reassemble. It’s painful.
You’re not after facts, you’re after truth, about being alive.
I have my students copy the masters… I lead my students to the books. Then I say, go make comics. You know how. Just go do it.
There are masterpieces in any medium. Even blogs. It just matters that you do it.
Carol Tyler, painter and cartoonist, creator of The Job Thing, Late Bloomer, and You’ll Never Know.
As a painter, I just couldn’t say it all. So I made comics.
Sometimes you get pissed off & you just have to draw a comic.
(paraphrasing here – need to rewatch for proper quote) I’ve just been through one of the worst eight months of my life. My mother was sick and died. But every night I knew I could go back to my drawing table and find my solace. (She chokes up, as do I.)
A one-pager is a great thing to master. Like a haiku.
We need it all… drugs, therapy, and comics.
I’m most incfluenced by Don Rickles & Frieda Kahlo
Aline Kominsky-Crumb, creator of Need More Love and Dirty Laundry
I’m most inspired and irritated by those around me. So that’s what I draw.
I have no style. It’s awkward, horrible scratching.