My short bio: It was the first week of the new year, and I had a pile of paperwork to sort through, a backlog of work to get done and more than a few bills to pay. I was asked to stop everything and urgently draw a cute greeting card for a friend (as a favour... of course) and before I knew it I had drawn an angry duckling saying QUACK F***ING QUACK. It made me laugh out loud and I shared it online.

it was making a few other people smile too (You probably met Grumpy Pig, Grumpy Sloth or Grumpy Bear here on Reddit), and so a promise was made. No matter what else life would bring in 2020, I would set aside enough time each day to draw and post a daily grumpy animal. Today is day 81.

I share the daily grumpy animal on instagram, twitter and try to keep them all indexed right here on reddit at the same time every day.

The first ever grumpy animals book is now available to pre-order from amazon and will be available in other physical formats closer to the release date. I also receive quite a lot of requests for the grumpy animals to be shipped out on various apparel and homeware over at grumpyanimals.com

 

My Proof: I'm beastflaps on twitter (also verified as Beastflaps on /r/funny and /r/comics) :)

Comments: 191 • Responses: 37  • Date: 

Cevin_cadaver164 karma

Is the book going to be a collection of the drawings you’ve done or will there be some additional story as well?

payitforwards134 karma

there will be an introductory text also, and perhaps some insights into how or why each grumpy animal came about ;)

Cevin_cadaver62 karma

Oh that’s cool something like “this is Steven the panda, he has to eat bamboo but it really upsets his irritable bowel.” I’ll keep an eye out for it’s release!

payitforwards110 karma

maybe more like "Steven the Panda is seen as a cute and cuddly softy, but Steven is still a f***ing bear. If Steven could speak he would probably let you know his dismay at being dismissed as a furry toy." :)

Cevin_cadaver27 karma

I like that. That seems like a much more legit concern Steven would have. Keep up the good work!

payitforwards30 karma

0xB0BAFE77-5 karma

I'm being 100% honest here (and I know honesty gets downvoted on Reddit with the quickness) but I really wouldn't bank on selling a lot of these.
They're...OK.
I went through about a dozen of them.
Unfortunately, I didn't chuckle at all. This just isn't my type of humor.
I'm worried you're going to sink a ton of time and money into this and it's not going to pay off.
I mean, I can't imagine a scenario where I'd buy this. Even for someone else.
Having that thought prompted me to write this response. Not to be mean, but to be fair.

I'm just trying to be real with you.
I don't wish bad on ya. I actually hope you have good luck and that I'm way off about this.

payitforwards76 karma

thanks for trying to help. I don't need to bank on anything. There's no risk here. The time I've put in has already rewarded me a thousand-fold in terms of my own discipline and getting back into a routine of being productive on a daily basis. And I don't need to sink any money into it. Thanks for looking out for me though. :) oh also, because it's available as pre-order, the book is actually already selling, so I know exactly the level of interest in the product. And I can tell you that you absolutely didn't need to worry.

MrAcurite85 karma

It seems like your initial motivation for doing this is partially the result of the whole "Artists' time is less valuable that everyone else's, and we can pay them in exposure or ask them for favors" thing.

Are there any steps that you would recommend for helping to combat these sorts of issues and mindsets in order to help younger or financially insecure artists?

payitforwards86 karma

I really can't see how society will move past it until both the artist and the customer both realise its value. It seems to be a vicious loop, where some customers will ask for free art because it's not a necessity, because it looks simple, and the artist will lower their asking price even to zero because they know nobody will pay for their work. What everybody needs to realise is that time is money, regardless of what was done with that time. Fixing a leaky pipe, programming a piece of software, making and serving a cup of coffee, drawing a cartoon. It all uses the same concept of time. A good piece of advice I saw was even if you are offering something for free or for a big discount to send them an invoice for the full amount but add the discount they receive. To make it CLEAR they fleeced you this time. Next time maybe they won't.

edit: no idea why anybody would downvote that question for you. It's an extremely valid point :)

NoMaturityLevel22 karma

Another missing link is the fact that if people want cartoons of rude animals then there is an actual demand for cartoons of rude animals. And the one who can provide said demand has a right to be compensated for it, not just the time and effort but the service too.

payitforwards14 karma

yes that's true. but if there's a demand for your art then you are more likely to get somewhere. having to convince the end user that they need your art on top of the battle to get the compensation for it seems like too much of an uphill struggle for me. I would shy away from generic art for that reason and find a niche with a known audience

Scodo71 karma

Could it be? It's like I'm seeing the next generation of single mother facebook posts being created before my very eyes.

Goodbye, Minions. Hello grumpy animals.

payitforwards26 karma

yes

dknisle129 karma

Can you do a grumpy raccoon? That’s my favorite animal

payitforwards42 karma

this may already be happening in the next week or so if you promise not to tell anyone

thatchickenwasgood23 karma

I really like your drawings but to me they don't look like grumpy animals. Sure they have "grumpy-ish" captions, but for the most part they look to be a range of worried, sad, and expressionless. I realize there's not a lot to work with, but have you considered making them look grumpier?

payitforwards22 karma

I get this a lot. but the grumpiness from my animals doesn't just come from the animal's facial expression. you have to read what the animal is telling you. In real life people can be grumpy without scowling. they will let you know they are grumpy by something they do or something they say. also a polar bear has no eyebrows and won't furrow its brow when its grumpy. also a lot of the phrases have double meanings, which won't work if the animal is scowling. so when the polar bear is saying he's keeping his distance because he will only hurt you. your first reaction should be aww sweet, but then you remember he's a polar bear and oh yikes. ok. let's keep away from that grumpy dude then. the thinking behind this comes from children's picture books, where the picture should always complement and not repeat what the text is telling you. so a picture of a little girl hiding under her blanket from the boogeyman under her bed wouldn't be captioned "She held the blanket up to her face in fear." but would instead say "She wondered if she should check under the bed before she slept."

sundubu718 karma

I love your grumpy animals! Would you consider drawing a grumpy shih tzu?

payitforwards18 karma

yes I would consider all manner of beasts

flashtwenty18 karma

Hello! Love your work! Especially the sheep and the fox. Do you ever have trouble finding inspiration? Also, sorry if I missed it, but any plans for a panda? Thank you!

payitforwards21 karma

Panda was day 20 and YES it's difficult to make a connection every day between an animal and a saying that hopefully isn't always what you'd quite expect that animal to say. I think staying away from stereotypes makes it funnier, but harder.

theawespaghetti10 karma

Why?!

payitforwards11 karma

I needed something to keep me disciplined to draw every day. The grumpy animal thing was painless enough to do that I never get bored and doesn't take a huge chunk out of each day. It also amused me, as well as others which kept the ball rolling :)

nyenbee8 karma

I've been following your grumpy animal posts. They are absolutely adorable. Good luck with the book!

Q: how has the outbreak of Covid-19 manifested itself in your grumpy animals drawings?

payitforwards25 karma

Thanks. I've kept that whole horrible subject away from my drawings. Grumpy Animals live in a fun world where everything is still normal.

wild_abandon8 karma

Except maybe the polar bear, who was ahead of their time.

payitforwards6 karma

this

NotChristina5 karma

I love your stuff! What do you use to make it? Software/hardware?

payitforwards6 karma

I use a wacom bamboo pen and tablet and adobe photoshop. I also enjoy the old graphite pencil and paper but mostly I'll draw straight into the machine

doubleflusher5 karma

Why do you call yourself beef flaps?

payitforwards8 karma

I don't

AgilityHobo4 karma

What are your go to strategies when dealing with artist's block? I'm at a point where I am also looking to be more disciplined with drawing, but I'm having a really hard time giving myself the push to start.

payitforwards3 karma

I can only tell you what I did, and that's to try and do a little bit every day. apparently 99% of inspiration is about turning up. or something. also draw something that entertains you. leave the boring stuff for another day. just do whatever you want to see on the page that day to satisfy you.

BloodBath_X4 karma

Hi I am one of your twitter follower. Start following you since day 1. I think the pig is the best so far and I am leeping an eye which animal can top it. Do you think you will consider dragon as one of the animal?

payitforwards7 karma

The pig is a lot of fun. I use the pig to try and mentally be in the grumpy animal shoes whenever I'm stuck. Mythical creatures may appear if I start running out of animals toward the end of the year, certainly :)

Norgeroff3 karma

What color is your toothbrush?

payitforwards7 karma

white, with green bristles

nuddley3 karma

Have you had to abandon any drawings because you couldn't make them grumpy?

payitforwards2 karma

not yet. If I ever get stuck I just put that animal to one side for another day. This happened with the seagull. I just didn’t know how best to get it to convey its abrupt nature. It just came naturally at the second attempt a couple weeks later and now it’s one of my favourites.

nuddley4 karma

I like your commitment, have you got a Wombat on your list? That will pretty much draw itself.

payitforwards3 karma

noted thank you for the great suggestion

Stole_The_Show2 karma

Hey there BeastFlaps, which is your favorite animal you've done and why?

payitforwards6 karma

you're asking me to choose a favourite child!! ha. I would have to say sloth or seagull. because of their attitude

mamamoo221 karma

Hi there, is there going to be a hardback book? Thanks

payitforwards2 karma

I am working on that, as well as a very surreal audiobook

IvanNewb1 karma

Saw this AMA in my feed and decided to check out the linked subreddit. Pretty cool stuff from the bit I saw!

However, what is your stance on references in your grumpy animals work? I'm thinking especially of things which might have political or religous connotations, such as a Danish protest pig or American bald eagle.

Thanks for your time and hope you'll carry on! I'll be keeping a tab on your work for sure :)

payitforwards2 karma

I'm just going to keep them grumpy and not political

Madness11 karma

[deleted]

payitforwards3 karma

I would delete your comment because apparently forcing a question mark gets you banned here

JustinisaDick1 karma

Are you looking for models?

payitforwards3 karma

always. but my wife always gets in the way

JustinisaDick2 karma

I'm talking about my cat.

payitforwards2 karma

I know

Qzy1 karma

How is there not a guinea pig? :O

payitforwards1 karma

we should keep our eyes out for that one maybe!

flyingmail1 karma

Hi! How was the process in getting a book? Did you get a publisher or are you self publishing? Would love to learn! Thank you

payitforwards2 karma

I actually have an agent (from a previous project) but I wanted to get the ball rolling on this before I lost steam so I went the direct route through amazon's publishing programme. I may switch to a traditional publisher for the hardback or for other grumpy animal collections down the line but for now I'm happy with the package offered and the speed at which amazon can get this project out there

tonysnark811 karma

Are there any animals you've thought of that just won't work, for whatever reason?

payitforwards6 karma

I keep coming back and back to the hippo, but I don't know what she wants to say. :( not yet anyway. It will come to me. and she will be fabulous. oh my. something just clicked

FaustusC1 karma

Have you considered making even ruder animals?

payitforwards4 karma

maybe that's a project for 2021. Sexy animals. jk. But seriously, I've thought of making less rude animals, so that the families with young kids can enjoy them. Maybe that's the next step: Family Friendly Grumpy Animals

NoMaturityLevel4 karma

How do you feel about making them family friendly grumpy BABY animals???

payitforwards6 karma

that would be great. A lot of the grumpy animals actually get requested as baby onesies over at grumpyanimals.com but I leave the text out for those for obvious reasons. so yeah, baby grumpy animals would be great for the younger audience.

FaustusC-2 karma

Well, gross.

payitforwards2 karma

how so?

funacct130 karma

Your company’s name is 1 letter away from meaning “Masturbates really hard.” What are your thoughts?

payitforwards1 karma

I don’t know which company you mean. toughwanky?

Heisenburrito-1 karma

Can you do a bat that says “eat me!”?

payitforwards9 karma

no real world current events will be used in the making of grumpy animals. the artist is scared enough as it is.

99NamesOfHastur-3 karma

How are you only up to day 81? Today is the 88th day of the year. Where or when were you for that missing week?

payitforwards3 karma

It wasn’t a new year’s resolution. It was a decision I made after the first week of 2020 had happened. I also touched on this in the first sentence of my intro text above.

great_bowser-3 karma

Ok, no offence, but how the hell do you take such dumb and purposefully shitty drawings and get a book published with those? And who do you expect to buy such book anyway?

Also, don't you feel a bit like a fraud, when artists who put hours into learning their the craft struggle to get noticed at all?

I truly mean no offence, but to see someone get enough notoriety by drawing dumb doodles on reddit to do an AMA and promote merch fills me with weird feelings.

payitforwards18 karma

I'm assuming you're an artist who has put hours into learning the craft and are struggling to get noticed? As am I. I have worked as an illustrator and animator in TV production for 20 years. I started as a drawing scanner, manually scanning and cleaning up artists keyframes into a big old dusty machine. I worked my way up from there into inking and painting the drawings. I spent whole nights and weekends on crappy pay doing that so that the animation studio wouldn't miss the deadlines. Over the years I gained enough relevant experience to move into animation, then to storyboarding and writing until eventually I was production manager and episode director on whole 12 part series. So no. I don't feel like a fraud, for choosing a style I enjoy doing, and for making something fun in my evenings and for offering it as a collection for others to enjoy if they want it. :)

edit: ok you ninja edited it to explain you don't mean any offence. cool. none taken. dumb doodles is just sometimes what we want to make, and what some of us want to see. people probably laughed once at walt disney for wasting his time drawing a stupid mouse but that's just how it goes.

edit2: also when you call somebody's drawings shitty, adding 'no offence' doesn't really negate the fact that you tried to offend them.