Why I Did Them…I Don’t Know

14 Jun

I’ve been cranking out dozens of one-panel comics recently in an attempt to revamp some potential clients into purchasing their very own Fakes comics for publication.  Can’t say it’s going too bad.  That being said, for some reason or another, some of the actual comics are BAD.

I don’t know why I’ll do it, but sometimes I’ll think of a comic that I think is “funny”, draw and color it, and then I look at it and think to myself, “What was I thinking??”

These comics quickly become the red-headed step-children of my work.  Usually I send them up to the attic without cookies or milk.  However, I decided I’d put a few of them on here instead.

So, here’s a few examples of comics I’ve quickly “scrapped” (in other words, don’t even submit).  I’ll explain why after each one.

This one with the candy house just didn’t make sense to me after I completed it.  My premise was that the witch lives in a house with nothing but candy (you know, from Hansel and Gretel) so that’s all she eats.  However, there’s never been an indication in any story tales that the witch eats candy.  Therefore, the comic lacked in humor.  A better twist on this would’ve been if the kids were diabetic and maybe take it in that direction.  At any rate – scrapped!

I decided not to submit this one because  – I swear – there’s a Farside comic JUST like it.  However, it’s frustrating because I don’t know for sure if there is or not!  I flipped through some of my Farside books, and I couldn’t find a comic like this.  But deep down, I felt it was too “Farside-ish”.  I hate it when I get an idea, and it seems very familiar like I’ve seen it done before – but don’t know for sure.  I’d never copy anyone’s work, and I have accidentally done strips before that were similar to something else.  Not a good feeling.  So this comic is (say it with me) – scrapped!

“Stepped on a crack and broke his back”.  Get it?  Ha!  Okay, this one is just too obvious.  I don’t like taking rhymes or words and using them into a familiar gag.  This type of humor has been done over-and-over, so I try to avoid it.  I don’t know why I did this one.  Some might think it’s “clever”, but I try to avoid clever and go for humor.  This is just one of those knee-slapper jokes that a five-year-old might find funny.  Scrapped!

Well, that will wrap up our first installment of “Why I Did Them…I Don’t Know”.  Stay tuned.  Unfortunately for you (the viewer), I’m sure there will be plenty more as these single-panel gags pour out of me.


12 Responses to “Why I Did Them…I Don’t Know”

  1. Bridget June 14, 2010 at 7:54 am #

    they’re still a bit funny to me. but glad you’re learning and growing in your passion for comics! keep up the good work!

  2. George June 14, 2010 at 10:59 am #

    All of these are very silly, Nate, but by my count, they’re still funny. There’s always a market for that kind of material. You can find a place for it.

    • Nate Fakes June 16, 2010 at 5:40 am #

      Thank, George! Yeah, I don’t know if there’s any arena for these or not. If discovered, they may move from the “junk drawer” to an outbox. We’ll see. In general though, I think they’re scrapped

  3. Brad June 14, 2010 at 11:34 am #

    I’ve had the same experience. Did a cartoon of a dog begging in an operating room and several years later, I ran across an almost identical cartoon in a Farside compilation.

    I’ve reached a point where I don’t read to many single panels any more. Like you, I want to be original and hate it when I realize I’ve seen an idea before.

    That said, I think you’re being way to critical. These are good.

    • Nate Fakes June 16, 2010 at 5:42 am #

      I wondered if I should stop reading one-panel gags as well. In one aspect of it, reading material that sells helps a person KNOW what sells, but I’m like you – I’m scared that subconsciously I might “steal” an idea or something. I want to stay totally original. (sigh) It’s a sticky wicket…

  4. Bo Lumpkin June 18, 2010 at 8:53 am #

    I’m 60 years old and read about 1000 pages per week. There are very few new ideas but there is nothing wrong with putting your own twist and personality into an old idea. At least that is my opinion.

    • Nate Fakes June 18, 2010 at 3:39 pm #

      That’s true as well. It’s hard to come up with something that hasn’t been done. And there is nothing wrong with a new twist on something. I just try to avoid something that’s TOO similar to something else.

  5. DadaHyena June 24, 2010 at 12:05 pm #

    Your restraint is admirable, considering how many cartoonists shamelessly rip off Gary Larson and The Far Side on a daily basis.

    That said, I still loved the Kong cartoon a lot!

    • Nate Fakes June 25, 2010 at 6:08 am #

      Yeah, I don’t know if it’s “ripping” off Larson or just striking similarities with a lot of cartooning. The Larson premise seems to work, so that’s why it’s done a lot. I just really aim for something off-key and original. Sometimes though, it’ll happen to the best of us where it’s a similar comic to something that’s been done – but it will have my own twist, so eh….

      Glad you enjoy Kong!

      • DadaHyena July 13, 2010 at 10:15 pm #

        Of course, Larson didn’t just pull that style out of thin air. His work owes a lot to Gahan Wilson and B. Kliban (the latter I think was pretty pissed over The Far Side).

        Still, there’s a difference between doing something “Larson-esque” and just shamelessly stealing his style (where to begin? Closer to Home, The Fifth Wave, The Argyle Sweater, Tundra…the list of knock-offs goes on and on…).

  6. Dennis July 8, 2010 at 6:14 pm #

    Great work. I lol when I read these (indication of a sick mind???)

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