Wednesday, March 24, 2010


I went home to Minneapolis for a few days while hanging out in the Midwest. While visiting my alma mater MCAD I realized that the comic kids now are basically the same as when I went to school. I compiled a list of irritating and perpetually reoccurring things that these kids do.

Comic Art Student pet peeves:
1. “Drawing with charcoal all big doesn’t teach you a thing about comics” you can not like drawing all big and stuff- but large scale observation drawing teaches you about how things sit in space and how people and objects fit together. So bullshit it doesn’t teach you about comics. Stfu, draw more.

2. “Art history doesn’t teach you anything about comics.” Sorry kid, comic books are not an island. You’re part of the PARADE OF TIME. Stop being so fucking ignorant.

3. “It’s not wrong, it’s my STYLE”. Ok, dude. Your “style” is to have misshaped, unobserved anatomy and jacked ass story telling? Just because it’s the all hallowed “Art” doesn’t mean your ass can’t be judged. I’m not even important and I can judge the fuck out of you. Stfu, draw more.

4. “My teacher doesn’t teach me anything.” Too bad. Learn to ask better questions, or get other teachers. Learning how to make art is on you, not them.

5. Showing your portfolio at a party is like showing up naked on a first date. The people MIGHT like what they see but you are such a whore they don’t give a shit.

6. Putting down other artists, editors, or publishers is fucking rude. NO. Be Polite.

7. You are not your art. Grow some thick skin and deal with negative comments.

8. Child, wash yourself!

9. Neck beards (you know, when the cheeks are shaved and the neck is full on? Usually comes with a trench coat and possibly a katana?) are not only Virginity Shields but also Editor Repellent. Shave. It. Off. NOW.

10. I really don’t care how busy you are. You still have to have pages newer then six months in your portfolio for me to believe you are not lazy.

11. No one THINKS they have bad manners. But there are a shit ton of rude ass people out there: accept that you MIGHT be one of those socially awkward people- and as a comic book industry hopeful let’s just say it’s a lot more likely then the rest of the general population. Read a book on etiquette and apply some. Is it lame? Sure. But that’s better then alienating a room full of strangers that might have given you money later.

12. Being “indie” is not an excuse for bad art. Stfu, draw more.

13. Ugly drawing is not bad comics. Bad story telling is bad comics- so no attitude, Mr. FineArt-major-slumming-it-comics-class! you suck too.

14. Before walking out of your hotel to a convention- stop and look in the mirror. Ask the following questions:
A. Have forgotten to bathe or shave today?
B. Does my shirt have a cuss word on it?
C. Are my clothes stained? Even a little?
D. Is my shirt made of silk and sold at hot topic? Any little dragons or spidermans on it?
E. Am I wearing a kilt?
F. Am I wearing cat ears and not being ironic?
G. Do I have gut leakage? (is my belly waving hello from under my tshirt)
H. Can I see my underpants or tits?
I. Am wearing sweatpants?

Any “yes” means you should change. And don’t start with that “if they don’t like me for me” bullshit. You are not representing yourself through your dragon screen printed silk shirt. You are creeping people out. Go home and dress however goofy you want.


  1. HA! Great list.

    I really started laughing my ass off with number 11. Last year I actually read "How to Win Friends and Influence People" after being told I come off as stand-offish during get togethers.

  2. This also applies to fine arts students. Number 3 is my biggest pet-peeve. Even Picasso had a tremendous body of realistic shit before he drew all f@#$ed up.

  3. Love this! Number 4 is especially true, there's always something to learn from someone and if you can't figure out what it is, challenge yourself within your art and improve yourself.

    Also number 12. MCAD has a big problem with that one.

  4. This made me smile. :)

    #7 - I have seen both a photoj & journalism graphics student nearly cry at a pro critique. It's incredibly awkward.

    On the other hand, I don't care if dude won a Pulitzer, just because he really liked your shit doesn't mean you get to be an obnoxious bastard.

  5. Number 10 is the real change since you were least while they are still at MCAD, they are producing,after graduating that is another story.

    Number 6 and 11 are my biggest pet peeves for people in general, wait, was that rude?

  6. Thank you for posting this.
    Love #12. It should be a code to live by.

  7. This is awesome. And, it's applicable to any profession.

    I'd love it if you'd add a note that misusing the English language in speech or prose isn't avante garde. It's laziness.

  8. This is all so right and so true!

  9. lmao. Great post. Shaving my neck beard as we speak, will stfu and now go draw.

  10. This is brilliant. As a comic book editor and frequent reviewer of portfolios, I have seen every one of these faux pas multiple times. All of it contributes to the definition, or lack thereof, of professionalism.

  11. #14 - I thought we wanted them to bathe and shave?

  12. Sage words that can really be applied to anyone under 30 doing anything for any reason.

  13. XD This makes me so glad I didn't transfer to MCAD. I'm in Saint Cloud and I swear it sounds 10 times worse than in my school.

  14. It's amazing how people who break these rules even wonder why they can't break into comics.

  15. Would it be wrong of me to e-mail this link to everyone I have to deal with who pisses me off?

  16. Maybe you should follow your own advice about being rude, etc. Also, get over your pointless hair and personal grooming issues: it paints you in a poor light.

  17. I think Nikki hit a nerve, or someone's never been to a decent-size con.

    (Hit the nerve harder and again, just in case.)

  18. thanks guys!

    Jael Segura- don't get me wrong. i loved my experience at mcad, but i could have used a little of this advice when i was going to school. the kids there are very very very talented- but it sure isn't for everyone. im happy to hear you are having a good experience at St. Cloud.

    cypherindigo you're right. my bad.

  19. fantastic. #1 and #4 especially. Anytime you are engaged in an activity, a similar activity should always have benefits. Life drawing makes you a better comic artist. Writing essays makes you a better novelist. Riding a bike makes you a better runner. Being a carpenter makes you a better actor or Jesus.

    It ties into #4, because hells yes all you dirty unwashed students, you are in school TO LEARN, not to be taught. Critique is for your benefit. Analysis is for your benefit.

    Kick ass list.

  20. So true it is sad that you have to point it out