It’s a complicated story, really, and spans more than a decade. It all started when I met amu. She was this fantasic girl whose hands were built to create. Her art was amazing to me. She was studying fashion design at the time and her style back then was this precise merging of fashion sketches and an alalgalm of her influences at the time.
You could see Gorey, Burton and Addams filling their respective textures and detail inside a clothes designer’s linework. It was fantastic and entrancing, and I told her she should be doing comics. She brushed it aside, claiming that her style was too similar to that of her influences, and maintained a fear that people would criticize her for being a copycat. This was a really crap excuse, mind you, but it kept her from wanting to embrace the idea.
I began doing research on putting together a comic strip, positive that I could convince her should I present enough data to support what at this point had become my begging her to do one. In a stroke of random luck, I managed to find Curtis creator Ray Billingsley on AOL and he was polite enough to chat with a stranger about starting a comic strip. I regretfully cannot remember what he told me, but I do remember that the next day I managed to convince amu to start a comic strip with me.
Together we created a story, she drew up character designs and I scripted the first few strips. Right then, things already started to die. During the creation process we both somehow got distracted. The art was too time consuming to do for what would likely be little to no payoff. We were going to do this for fun, but it immediately became work.
I kept writing and developing the story in bits and pieces on my own, but it was a lost cause. We both moved on to different hobbies and interests and the spark faded to a single, microscopic ember. Anime, and all things Japanese swept our collective attention span and we embraced a swiftly evolving internet culture. A comic was the last thing on our mind. But was it really?
Stay tuned for Part II when I explain exactly how it is we got here today.