A Day In The Life Of A Cartoonist

HEY HEY HEY: Go check out my Patreon. Fancy Patrons got to see some of the work in progress on this very comic as I was making it.

I’ve been drawing this 18 panel behemoth for a week solid. I guess panel 19 should be, “Oh and I guess draw this one comic for 6 hours a day, 4 days straight or whatever I suppose.”

I’ve had this idea in the back of my mind for a while and really I’ve just been working up the nerve to START creating something this big. Recently I was approached by Autodesk, the makers of Sketchbook Pro and asked to partner with them to show off the new version of their drawing software. I figured this comic idea, which was completely out of my comfort zone, would be a great way to showcase using a new piece of software, that was also completely out of my comfort zone. I wanted it to look different from my normal stuff, so I thought it best to remove all of the tools and muscle memories that allow me to easily create my “normal stuff.” There was a learning curve, but I soon adapted to Sketchbook Pro’s interface and I was pretty impressed with some of the tools it offered that were catered specifically to drawing. I know that sounds like an odd compliment for a DRAWING application, but I’ve made over 1000 comics using a professional photo editing suite (Photoshop CS through CS6) that ALSO happens to allow drawing.

I’m working with Autodesk to produce a video about my experiences with Sketchbook Pro and the creating of this comic. It will hopefully be available for you to view early next year.

DID YOU GET YOUR HOGWARTS LETTER YET?! Check out these Harry Potter inspired owl post earrings and necklaces my wife made:

harry potter owl post letter necklace earrings etsy

This comic is also a further commentary on what it’s like to run a (very) small business. As I mentioned in the previous comic’s post, I had to stop everything for three weeks while I frantically built a new online store and merch fulfillment operation from scratch. There’s so much about the business of creating things and putting them on the Internet that has NOTHING AT ALL TO DO WITH CREATING THINGS or putting them on the Internet. When you are known for one specific type of output, it can seem like 75% of the work you do (the stuff that goes unseen) goes completely unappreciated. One of my goals for 2015 is to talk more about The Experiment and what the ACTUAL BUSINESS of making comics (or music or games or whatever) is like vs. what it may seem to be like to the casual observer. I hope to speak with other creators in similar situations and figure out a way to present our shared experiences to other potential makers, doers and Experimenters. It seems like we all just sort of flop around, making a thousand mistakes and figuring things out as we go. If there was a way I could help a fellow artist get their art out there AND make a living from it without making, let’s say, 500 of the 1000 most common mistakes, I think that’s a project worth pursuing. I’ll talk more about that project next year when I have a better idea of what shape it will take.

Scared Straight


HijiNKS ENSUE finally has a proper About/Characters page, and an Archive page that links to and explains the different types of comics I’ve made over the years. I’ve also updated the Support page.


My Patreon hit $750, so starting in April (the first month Patrons will be charged) HijiNKS ENSUE will have an official Monday/Wednesday/Friday update schedule and THEN it went past $1000 so every month I will do TWO HijiNKS Hangouts, where me and my awesome cartoonist/creator/maker/professional awesome person friends will hang out with you live via Google+, answer questions, tell stories, draw dicks, etc. It will be a lot like my ComfyCon Panel.

At $1500, you will be forcing me to do FOUR HE comics a week, and I am OK with that.

SEATTLE FANCY BASTARDS! Emerald City Comicon is in 2ish weeks! 

David and I will be at booth #1412 [MAP] right next to Cyanide & Happiness! I will have the leftover DDDT prints, other prints, books, shirts and sketches.

I’ll be doing TWO PANELS: 

“The Cyanide and Happiness Group Sketch Jam Panel” / Friday, March 28, 6:10pm, Hall B, (Rooms 608-609)
“The Experiment: Making a Living Doing What you Love” / Saturday, March 29, 6:00pm, ROOM 3AB.

More panel info HERE

HijiNKS ENSUE Woody After HoursAlso, make sure to follow the 6 comic guest arch Joel (“Comic Joel,” that is) will is doing over at Woody After Hours starting HERE.




COMMENTERS: Did you ever meet someone as a kid, or hear someone speak as a teen, or interact with a particular person in any way that made you say, “THAT. That is what I want to be.” Hearing Niel deGrasse Tyson talk on Cosmos (seriously, watch this show with your kids) about his encounter with Carl Sagan at 17, and how it shaped not only WHAT he wanted to become, but THE KIND OF PERSON he wanted to be really got me thinking about this.

With Fans Like These…

The Doctor Is In T-Shirt

“The Doctor Is In” shirt based off the “You’re The Last of The Time Lords, Charlie Brown” comic is here!

Sharksplode.com - Geeky Nerdy T-Shirts, Funny Tee Shirts

NEW HE PODCASTEpisode 83 “Ass Merkins”

UPDATE 4/28/11: Some of you are upset that I’ve taken this position. Let me assure you that I wasn’t trying to just jump on the “hate Scott Adams” bandwagon. I read what he wrote and I thought it was in REALLY poor taste. Sure it may have been out of context or intended for a certain audience, but unfortunately he posted it on the Internet for everyone to see. And regarding the whole “sock-puppet #1 Fan” thing, I don’t think he’s a horrible creep for doing that. Just a regular creep. The mentality of “time to go do my daily defending of myself on the Internet using a different identity” is just a lame, sad activity. I feel bad for him honestly. He might actually be a happier guy if he had a smaller niche audience. Then he really could just talk to one subset of people that understood his comments towards women weren’t as misogynist as they sounded. I certainly know what it is to say something outrageous for comedic effect, knowing good and well I don’t really feel that way. But if I got called out on something like that on such a grand scale I would apologize and move on. Just my thoughts on the matter. Maybe I came off as too harsh. Maybe I’m not familiar enough with the subject matter. I am willing to concede that. I have also toned down some of the language in the post below to be more in line with how I actually feel and less outrageous. I should also point out that all I really wanted to do was use the “posting about yourself on forums” aspect of the story to make a joke about Josh doing the same thing. That’s why over 2/3 of the comic deals with that aspect and not with Adams.



I guess Scott Adams is kind of like the Michael Richards of cartoonists. If he could have just kept his mouth shut, he would have faded into reasonably likable obscurity. Now we have the unfortunate burden of knowing that he’s a bit of a misogynist, and egomaniac.

These days I don’t find Dilbert inspiring, or entertaining. It’s about as base as comics get (hell, it was nearly impossible to try to mimic Adams’ completely rigid and emotionless drawing style for the comic above), which doesn’t suit my tastes. When I was an adolescent I did look up to Adams, though. He was spreading nerd culture to the masses just as I was learning to take apart computers, and he was able to leave his IT career and turn his hobby (passion?) into his job. Both admirable feats, in my mind.

I even had a newfound respect for him a few years ago when I learned about him permanently losing his voice, then retraining his brain to speak as if he was singing (he had to trick his brain or else it would not let him speak). I just thought that was a cool thing to do, and a nice little story about not giving up, etc, etc. Now I have a harder time respecting the guy. Seems like he’s a little full of himself and reacts poorly when cornered (though, I may have done the same in his place. Who knows?) The safest bet would have just been to apologize and move on.

COMMENTERS: Do you care if a cartoonist is makes seemingly misogynist comments? Would it stop you from reading his comic? Would it stop you from reading mine if I acted the same way? How about a sandwich? Have you eaten? You look thin. Let me make you a sandwich.

HEY! Check out this interview I did for Hollywood Jane.

ALSO HEY! Check out this interview my friend Tom Brislin did for The Functional Nerds Podcast. He does all the music for the HE Podcast and he’s one of my favorite people.