Comments: 142 • Responses: 50  • Date: 

Raborn49 karma

Don't listen to this guy, Dan is not a "minor cartoonist", he's fucking awesome and deserves recognition. Screw you Dan, you're bigger than a minor cartoonist! shakes his fist

pathetic_meat_robot21 karma

Hey, Raborn.

C.. cake you very much. ;_;

Warlizard34 karma

I can't see why publishers wouldn't leap to publish child abuse and pedophilia.

Seriously man, WTF?

I mean, sure, freedom of expression and all, but Jesus Christ, WHY the hell would you draw that?

pathetic_meat_robot20 karma

Hey man, that's my other comic!

Sasakura8 karma


pathetic_meat_robot13 karma


TsunTaiga11 karma

I'm curious how your work can be considered "too risky" when Fifty Shades of Grey, a Twilight fanfic with explicit BDSM, was the bestselling book last year. Please elaborate!

pathetic_meat_robot28 karma

Probably too many blank pages and upside down words... and not enough vaginal fisting. I'll have to work on that.

TsunTaiga5 karma

If I had to pin it on anything, I'd say there's not a huge market for anime-style comics in the Americas. Even traditional comic books are a shrinking market.

pathetic_meat_robot4 karma

Yeah, that's true. And I'm well aware that the stuff I'm interested in doing doesn't have mass appeal. Why should a publisher waste their time on something like this when there may be another Scott Pilgrim out there? The publisher is making the right choice.

Nomtastic8 karma

Wow your work is fantastic! I'm currently working on my first comic book ever for school. What advice would you give to a youngin' like me? (From any aspect of drawing/writing/creating a comic book)

pathetic_meat_robot16 karma

Well, besides money stuff (which I know nothing about) all I can suggest is that you:

  • find your artistic heroes
  • maintain strong interests OUTSIDE art

Doing the first will keep you humble and hungry, as well as give you reference points by which to orient your own artistic leanings. Knowing about their struggles (both in art, and the interaction between their ordinary life and their art) may, on some days, be your only source of comfort along what may necessarily become a very long lonely road. That is, after you reach your peak technique (which is different for all of us) you have nowhere to go but deep inside and no one can help you but those who have seen that road to the end-- that usually means turning to dead artists and what they leave behind.

Doing the second will give you fuel for your artistic pursuits. Writing, comics, painting, etc. can (for some) have a habit of turning inwards and only talking about itself. Keep one foot in another world and that can become a great source of warmth and power. Read widely, do widely.

... .... Well, sorry for the long reply. Take it with a grain of salt since I'm only talking from my own experience. I have no ar-guments to back any of that up -- it's all anecdotal.

When it comes to technique -- don't neglect your studies. Do the usual grinding: Loomis, life drawing, etc. "Undestanding Comics" is a go-to book for most people. Also try James Wood's "How Fiction Works". Study and read novels, Literary criticism, etc. Don't worry too much about 'developing a style' until you have a broad and reliable range of techniques available to you. Style (the real core you can't abandon or change) usually happens without you noticing, anyway.

Good luck in the world of comics!

Nomtastic2 karma

Thank you for your advice! Although I am not planning on doing professional work, it's something that I enjoy for the sake of both a challenge to myself and just because I love to draw. Also, my high school graduation now depends on it haha.

I have already begun "Understanding Comics" and it is very helpful. I'm trying to learn as much as possible. Thank you again for your advice. :)

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

My pleasure!

Once again, best of luck!

mrkorb5 karma

Do your parents worry?

pathetic_meat_robot18 karma

Nope. They gave up hope long ago.

adamup273 karma

What could possible inspire you to find humor in such dark subject? I would like to add that while I myself cannot bear drawing comics like that, I have come up with a couple about maiming (involving preschoolers) and other dark subjects.

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

I guess I don't really think of them as 'dark' subjects. At least anymore. These days I just think of all these things as aspects of the human experience... or at at the very least, aspects of the human imagination... so I think we can laugh at those things exactly when we can laugh at ourselves.

The trick is to be able to laugh at ourselves without hating ourselves. That narrow line and delicate balancing act could be called 'dark humor'. But like I said, I think it's a misnomer.

Thanks for the excellent question, though. Trying to answer it made things a little clearer in my own head.

Shadocchi3 karma

Have you tried pitching to a few independent publishers? Kind of interested in what kind of publishers turned you down.

pathetic_meat_robot3 karma

Plenty, large and small -- but as Taiga says above, there isn't much of market for this kind of thing. Especially since it's "OEL manga" which doesn't really sell.

medicalalphabetical3 karma


pathetic_meat_robot3 karma

Trying for it. That's what the Kickstarter is for. It's going okay.

medicalalphabetical1 karma


pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

Nah, no prob - I appreciate the suggestion. : ) Kudos to your friend!

mrkorb2 karma

You never draw anything explicitly pornographic. You often get suggestive, and sometimes even lewd (dat Mayaka waifu picture). Why not (besides canned in Banada)?

pathetic_meat_robot7 karma

Because canned in banada. Also, I think I like erotica more than porn... those lewd, embarrassed, lustful faces!

TheRoadNorth2 karma

I remember reading Nana when I was twelve!


im go read the rest of your stuff now i hope there's something happy

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

Ufufu~ : >

I apologize for nothing~! : >

But seriously, try the navigator if you're browsing. Cupcake or June in Summer might be good if you're looking for something lighter.

Thanks for reading (even if you were twelve, ha ha).

atrophine2 karma

Do you prefer working with lineart or blocking in shapes? SAI or PS?

pathetic_meat_robot7 karma


atrophine1 karma

Speaking of texture brushes, is there a layer mode in particular you use for them?

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

Screen, usually, since I go over with white. Sometime dodge.

FluffyHound2 karma

No question, just a thank you. In my early discover days of finding internet comics back in like 2005ish, You were on the top of the awesome list. Brought me a ton of laughs and lot of wasted (well spent) hours in school study halls reading your comics. Much appreciated Mr. Kim.

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

My pleasure. Thanks for reading!

minatsu2 karma

Hey Dan, love your work. If I recall correctly, you were a comp sci/math major in university? How did that side of you pan out? I'm asking as a fellow cs major with artistic interests.

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma


Yeah, I got a B.Math, CS. It was useful for getting a job as a game designer. The guys who majored in game design ended up as QA and/or integration guys. It worked out alright, though I really don't want to spend the rest of my life there.

Unless you're doing a small indie game, you'll be stuck chasing the Call of Duty audience or emulating the flavor of the month. Not the way I want to burn away my life.

minatsu1 karma

Did you start right away as a designer, or did you have to move up from a dev job?

And would you ever consider indie, or would you much rather just work on art now?

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

I started right away as a designer. It wasn't at an AAA studio, though -- we were doing (AAA knockoff) mobile games.

I may do an indie game... actually, really want to do one. I have a project in mind, but I'll have to get a few other things off my plate, first.

nine_gag2 karma

How much money do you make?

pathetic_meat_robot10 karma

From comics? Nothing. Actually, less than nothing -- I've kept the site ad free and for years and site hosting is about $500 a year. I haven't made or sold merchandise in about 8 years, either (except for a small run of poor-quality lulu books in the last year or so). I worked as a video game designer for about 4 years, though. That paid the bills.

Galenmereth1 karma

Do you still work as a game designer? Or are you planning on living off your comics now?

pathetic_meat_robot3 karma

Not sure. At a crossroads at the moment. I'll have to see how the KS goes and weigh my options afterwards. I don't relish the thought of doing Farmville or Call of Duty clones until the day I retire, though.

tittilating_tomatoes1 karma

Can you explain the ending of Nana's Everyday Life? I know there were a bunch of flowers, but I'm not sure if it means she accidentally killed a bunch of cats or what.

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

Well, 'explaining' might be a bit much -- but you can think of the flowers as some small recompensatory movement on the part of what was, until that point in the comic, a callous and indifferent universe. Nana said it was "okay like this". Maybe she was right.

You could also think of it as the point at which the comic admits it's just a comic and tries for a deus ex machina -- tries for the good end, but only manages something sideways and bittersweet.

Or you could think of it as flowers being thrown on the stage as the curtain falls.

-- Well. There are lots of other ways to think and talk about this, but there's a few. Sorry if that all sounds super pretentious - that's just how I go about thinking about this stuff when I write it.

SwampJew1 karma

Ever consider doing a tag-team writer/artist collab?

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

Nope -- I'm not interested in team-ups at the moment. For me, comics are a solo mountain climb. Gotta do it on my own.

butterflymcdoom1 karma

For me, comics are a solo mountain climb. Gotta do it on my own.

For reasons too Gordian to get into here - I'm grateful for this comment. Thank you.

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

No, thank YOU. I've found that the only comfort on a solo climb is that soft, quasi-presence of other, distant, solo climbers. I think that's the best meaning of "alone together".

Thanks for throwing up your flare.

I.. I mean... internet fist bump?

Paladinoras1 karma

Nana's Everyday Life depressed the hell out of me for a bit.

Then again I'm kinda used to weird shit like that so...yeah. The plot seems somewhat familiar though, like an anime I've watched before.

genericname1231 karma

Seems like it's based partly on Elfen Lied

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

Yup, that's correct.

MandMcounter1 karma

Just wanted to say hello, good luck, and that the "girl and her doll" comic gave me a very thorough giggle. Many thanks.

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

Thanks for reading. : >

Nelav1 karma

Beautiful Artwork!

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma


Talking_To_Yourself1 karma

So what's a good IRC client? : (

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

You know I'm not going back in there.

Not_One_Of_Us1 karma

You cunt, get back in here.

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma


Galenmereth2 karma

Twitter is for whores. Are you a whore, Dan? Are you!?

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

Well, I am doing this AMA. : /

wombatsc21 karma


Also have you ever considered doing work with a writer? Specifically me? Can I write comics and make you draw them for me? I'll pay for the printing and pitch them to all my friends at Tokyopumps and Derkherse and Imagine. COME ON IT'S A SWEET DEAL. FUCKING ARTISTS. FORGET IT THEN! (Unless you're into it.)

Also, if you don't work with writers/collaborators, any particular reason? :D

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

I DON'T IGNORE ANYONE ON TWITTER ;_; At least I don't think I do... unless I'm missing all your tweets somehow...?

Anyway, nope, I don't work with writers -- I just want to do my own thing. I don't like being a hired gun... for me, art (even the cartoon butt part of it) is something like an unassisted mountain climb. I gotta do it myself (or as close as possible to 'myself') as I can, all the way, until I die.

ymtzrkv1 karma

I've been following your work for years, and while I have always loved your regular work on Tomoyo's42 and your other comedy strips, it's been very frustrating, since before NNN, your last finished work was Nana iirc, which was an awesome strip, and makes me want to read another complete long work from you.

What sets NNN apart from works like Penny Tribute, Kanami or Metal Fist, that made you actually finish it? Why did you drop those other works? Have you learned something from NNN that will be useful to work on Witches until the very end?

pathetic_meat_robot3 karma

NNN, like Paper Eleven, was the working out of some questions that had been bothering me for a long time - questions that kept intruding into other works and kept them from being finished.

After killing off comic after comic it became clear that I needed to deal with this stuff or I'd never be able to do anything else. So I quit my job (for about 9 months) and finished NNN. After (roughly) settling some issues (or at least sharpening them up enough so that they became engageable problems instead of boogey men) things have been a lot better. I've been plugging away at Cupcake which just plain fun to draw, and Witches -- although hard -- now seems worthwhile and doable after the very difficult journey that was NNN.

So... yeah. Dark Flame Master tl;dr: needed to fight some demons, sealed them in a book instead, now they are under my power.

ymtzrkv1 karma

Thanks for the answer! Yeah, it's been really good to see you so focused on Cupcake, also the art is just lovely.

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

She's just so much fun to draw. Those stripes and twintails~

Glad you're liking her, too. : >

TsunTaiga1 karma

Is it true what they say, that Canadian cigarettes are weak compared to American ones?

Also, what's your opinion on the death of the Canadian penny?

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

No idea, I don't smoke. As for the penny, if it makes economic sense, I'm for it. I'm not sentimental about the coin itself.

tanstaafl3211 karma

What happened to that VN you were making with the Blade Engine guys?

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

Things fell apart -- it was my fault. The story was terrible and I committed to a timeline while I was still in school. That didn't work out.

Sasakura1 karma

Hai Dan. Is the KS for NNN going to be on better stock than the LuLu version?

Keep it HUGE.

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

Yes it will! I still need to get the proof copy, but I'll make sure it's something you'll actually be happy to have on your bookshelf.


mrkorb1 karma

Congratulations on your Kickstarter success. It's pretty astonishing to see it keep growing like that. Did you expect such a huge response to it in just the first day? Where do you think it might end? Are you prepared for how depressing the next 28 days will be when they fail to meet such a high watermark?

pathetic_meat_robot5 karma

I thought it would flop. I'm preparing my heart for the moment everyone revokes their pledge 5 minutes before the KS ends, busts down my door, then gather in a circle to point and laugh at me while stepping on my tablet and heart.

Galenmereth3 karma

So you haven't realized that the worst-case scenario is this: The Kickstarter is so successful you realize you're actually really talented, and you'll have thousands of fans cheering you on from then on out. And then comes the pressure. All according to keikaku.

pathetic_meat_robot3 karma

That sounds impossible and terrifying. ;_;

DrowningEmbers1 karma

OMG I remember these!

I don't have anything to ask right now...

umm do you like fighting games? if so which ones? Characters? Favourite print comics? Genre? Superhero/Cape-and-Cowl? Characters?
What do you think of ROber Kirkman?
What is your favourite movie? TV series? Cartoon?
What is your favourite childhood toy?

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

  • Fighting games: I like 'em, but I don't go out of my way to play them. I played SFA2 regularly as a kid, but nothing's captured my heart like that since.
  • Characters: I like Jean-Luc Picard as a character. Best captain.
  • Print comics: BLAME! By tsutomu nihei.
  • Genre: moe slice of life and GRIMDARK
  • Cape and cowl: Batman, but I'm a total casual when it comes to these sorts of comics.
  • Kirkman: I have no idea who that is.
  • Movie: Robocop
  • TV series, Cartoon, toys: too many to choose from. : (

DrowningEmbers2 karma

Robert Kirkman writes The Walking Dead

pathetic_meat_robot0 karma

Oh, sorry -- I don't really watch much television. I haven't owned a TV in about ten years, ha ha.

DrowningEmbers2 karma

I mean...he wrote the comics the show is based on o.o

pathetic_meat_robot0 karma

I haven't read the comic either... I'd never even heard about it until you mentioned it. : (

Metalballs1 karma

What inspired you to make the unexpresive facebirds?

pathetic_meat_robot3 karma

--   --
   |       KJXA KJXA KJXA

Metalballs1 karma

--   --
   |     !!!  

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

--   --
   |     <3 <3 <3

Metalballs2 karma

Related to that, have you considered making a bestiary or character compendium? I like your creatures and designs and I think knowing more about them would be great.

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

That's definitely something I've considered working into On the Subject of Witches. I'll almost certainly have it.

JairJy1 karma

When I was a kid, after I read Scott McCloud's "Reinventing Comics" I tried to find artist who where making interesting comics on the web and I found you.

Dan, I only want to tell you I love Nana's Everyday Life. It is one of the best webcomics I ever read, full of black humor and drama.

pathetic_meat_robot1 karma

Hey, Jair. Thanks for the kind words, man.

I'm happy to know Nana was received, in part, by conscientious readers like yourself.

naruko98-5 karma

It got rejected for being dull. It's a pitfall of being Canadian. Nana's was briefly funny for its HO HO IN-JOKES stuff. Go back to satirizing visual novels, even if JAST isn't putting it in your butt any more.

pathetic_meat_robot3 karma

It probably did!

Also, I didn't really play any of the VNs JAST sent me. I just looked at the box art. I don't even really like VNs in general, just some particular works: umineko eps 1-4, Kana Imouto (though that's only through nostalgia goggles), Planetarian for the same reason. I wouldn't go out of my way to play or parody any.

peterinjapan2 karma

The J-List Presents comics were awesome. We'd game for it if you are, Dan!

pathetic_meat_robot2 karma

Thanks, Peter. : >

It was fun, but I think I gotta move on.