Footprints and First Loves

Over the weekend, the kind folks at Bleeding Cool asked me to write something about Footprints. This is the piece I wrote, but you can read it over at Bleeding Cool as well along with the pages of Footprints: Bad Luck Charm.

We all remember our first true love. It’s the one that made your heart blossom. The one that cut deepest when it was betrayed. The one that still lingers somewhere inside of you, every single day, no matter how far you’ve come since the time you felt that first unmistakable flutter. You’ll love other things in your lifetime, of course you will, but the first will always be your first and nothing can change that.

When it comes to my career making comics, Footprints is my first true love. It certainly wasn’t the first comic I made, but it’s the first one that felt right, that felt special, and that I was truly proud of. It was a creator-owned mini-series by me and friend/co-creator/artist Jonathan Moore that we began working on in 2010 and released in 2011. It’s an amalgam of everything I love; a noir whodunit starring Bigfoot as a private eye trying to track down his brother’s killer with the help of his old pals Jersey Devil, Nessy, Choop, and Megalodon. It’s weird, it’s funny, it’s scary, and it’s us.

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Looking back on it, of course there are things about it I wish I could change. Dialogue that makes me cringe, storytelling decisions that aren’t the greatest. I’m sure Jonathan has similar feelings about the art. But that’s part of why it’s so special to me. Just like that awkward first kiss when you’re still trying to figure each other out. There’s a particular romance to that, and it’s a similar feeling working with a new collaborator for the first time. It takes a while to get on the same page and learn how the other likes to work, and in comics that’s usually happening for all the world to see in the comic itself. Imagine your first kiss getting broadcast on TV. Footprints was like that.

But more importantly, Footprints launched a great friendship with Jonathan. He’s one of the hardest working people I’ve ever known as well as one of the kindest; he’s got a lovely, beautiful family and I admire that. We’ve both been through some rough times in the years we’ve been friends, but no matter how terrible things have gotten, there’s never been a time where we thought we wouldn’t work together again. Even when we did pitches that didn’t go anywhere, argued over story, or went on to other gigs, it was never “well, that’s that,” it was “well, what’s next?”

And what’s next – what was always next – is more Footprints.

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I can’t say if that “first love” feeling that Footprints gives me is because of its characters and their world, or if it’s because it gave me a friendship that I treasure. I think it’s probably the mixture of both that leaves Footprints in the back of my mind no matter what else I’m working on. So when the cards finally aligned and we decided to get back to work on the series – in the form of a one-shot called Footprints: Bad Luck Charm – I was ecstatic.

Just by nature of our creative relationship, ideas started flowing for the future, and it’s the best feeling in the world. Not because I think Footprints will be a big sales success or something – though we certainly have ideas for tons more and would love to continue — but because I’m working with a friend on characters we created together that we love dearly, and we’re excited about it.

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So Footprints: Bad Luck Charm is on Kickstarter right now, with our campaign ending on June 1. And while I certainly hope people want to see more Footprints or are interested enough to check it out for the first time, I’m just hoping that we’ll get fully funded so I have the chance to tell new stories with such a wonderful and talented friend.

Thanks for reading.

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Filed under art, blog, comics, writing

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