It’s why I dropped out of a reasonable career as a journalist in Australia to move across the planet and attend cartoon school in Vermont.
But the first year at the Center for Cartoon Studies is fiction heavy.
You make a whole lot of mini-comics that stretch your imagination and kick a million creative bits of your brain into action in ways you’ve never thought of, but there are zero assignments that require you to write and draw a non-fiction comic of any description.
So I had to wait until the free-for-all colloquially called ‘mini-thesis’ in May to devote time to anything of the sort.
And what did I want to devote a month of my life to?
How about the ins and outs of the US presidential primaries?
Specifically those in New Hampshire?
Vote First Or Die: a short history of the New Hampshire Primary is my FIRST EVER long form non-fiction comic.
And it’s far from perfect:
- There are lines behind my lettering that it turns out I couldn’t erase after putting ink wash over the top.
- The words don’t flow as easily as I would have liked.
- The break out speech bubbles are sometimes jarring and distracting.
- The ending is a bit off and I reckon I should have included another three pages about the 1968 Democratic primaries.
BUT I only had so much time to research, write and draw this for class AND I only have so much time over the summer to revise.
I’ve made what I consider to be the most important superficial changes to Vote First or Die and added an extra two pages about the ’52 election.
So it’s time to let go of this project and move on.
I’d love to hear constructive thoughts on distilling complex political ideas, events, issues and legislation into an 18 page mini-comic!
Because you know what? I’m going to be making a lot more of these and I want them all to be better than the last.