My name is Tom, and I love comics. Always have, and probably always will. I grew up reading daily newspaper comic strips, watching Saturday morning cartoons, and checking out every silly humor book I could from the local library. I diligently read the “funnies” in the newspaper every night and relished those 15 minutes of reading the Sunday comics each week. My dad used to buy old Peanuts comic strip collections from the library discard bin and I would read them over and over again throughout my childhood.
As a child I dreamed of being a famous artist (or even a cartoonist!) and making my living “doing art stuff.” But there has always been one tiny detail holding me back:
I can’t draw.
Really. I’ve gone through stacks of “You Can Draw” art books, I’ve taken classes, I’ve watching videos and sketched all sorts of things over the years. I’ve never been able to draw well and I probably will never learn at this point.
But even as a four-year-old kid, I didn’t allow my lack of drawing skills hold me back from making art. I clearly remember as a kid cutting things out of my mother’s old Woman’s Day magazines and gluing them together into a an artistic collage. I’d make stories and cartoons and build little scenes with bits of magazine ads, newspaper photos and just a few marks of crayon to tie them all together.
Forty years later I’ve decided to try it again. All the graphics in Parkington Park come from copyright free publications printed before 1923. Most of the art used here was created using various 19th century woodcut or metal engraving techniques which give them that classic “old timey steampunky” look.