Jessica's Page About Cartooning

I've been cartooning since I was a kid. Often my early works were based on short fictional stories I'd made up, or just drawings of potential characters. This one is a story about two girls who get lost taking a camping trip. Apparently I never finished the cartoon version, though I still have the manuscript of the original story somewhere.

And this one is a "newspaper style" set of strips I'd made up about one of my hobbies at the time--playing with my dolls! Notice how in the first strip they're small enough to fit in the sleeve of the sweatshirt? That's because that's at about "actual size", all the characters in these strips were based on actual "characters" developed around the actual dolls me and my sister had. The first strip features Tif-Tif (short for Tiffany) and Becca, who are best friends, who seem to like to get into mischief together and act like little kids, with all maturity and well behaved manners a two year old would have. The second strip features "the triplets"--I don't remember all of the triplets names but that's why they're all the same height, they're supposed to all be the same age, unlike Becca and Tif-Tif.

some cartoon characters based on myself & friends:

Over time the ideas matured a bit. In high school, I even did a cartoon retelling of Julias Ceasar in cartoon form for a book report! The characters were mostly traced or drawn from newspaper cahracters, depending on how close to the beginning of the story you're at (tracing turned out to be much too slow, so I started redrawing the characters freehand!). Brutus was represented by Dilbert, and Ceasar, of course, represented by the pointy haired boss. And Cassius looks a bit like Ted Forth, though not all the characters were necessarily were type-cast into being played by comic characters with similar personalities--some were simply chosen to look distinctively different than the other characters in that panel so that you could tell them apart even without the name inscriptions.

see a full page from this story (sorry I didn't scan the whole story!)

Other times I just like to draw sketches of inanimate objects and cartoon-ize them, and give them personality. In ninth-grade art class we had an assignment where we were supposed to give lifelike qualities to an inanimate object we drew, such a teapot. Needless to say, I was intruiged by the giving of lifelike characteristics in a cartoon way to objects you don't necessarily expect to see in that way, and I started drawing many other "characters" out of whatever happned to be around me. This sketch, for example, was of a stereo speaker and UW Huskies mug next to the headboard of my parents bed where I was drawing.

And then one of my friends from college started drawing comic strips of his day to day activities and posting them on his blog rather than the traditional text post. As much as I enjoyed reading them, receiving in the mail a photocopied version of the entire original booklet, and getting to see how they were all laid out on the page rather than cropped into only today's strip, that was even more amazing.

Sometimes I've gone through phases where I've tried to imitate that art, and tried to draw a strip of only a few panels reflecting my day. This panel happened to be from a Sunday. I went to a small little calvary chapel church in Livermore (can you tell that's why it has a dove on the front of the building?). It really is in a neighborhood with cute little white picket fences. I cleaned my sister's room (which really looks just like that). That's an electric keyboard on the window seat if you were curious. And I went to a class on Inductive Bible Study at church. Notice the attention to detail, like my hair is pulled up into two little buns and everybody is pointing at me to "volunteer me" to share my answers with the rest of the class.

And then sometimes I cartoon for other reasons. One day I drew the first most of a page of telling my testimony of how I came to know Jesus...mostly all I got to though was the BC part and not the really cool part of the changes that came about. Here's one little bit of it that could probably be a comic strip about the realities of college in its own right out of context. I love some of the little attention to detail things in the strip, like the rendition of the library at UCSD, complete with the arched entrance with glass sliding doors behind it and the spaceship floors above. The UCSD sweatshirt in the second panel really only sort of worked, kind of looks like a CSD sweatshirt, and what is CSD anyhow?

And sometimes I draw random things like illustrating in comic book form a retelling of a bible passage. What better way to remember a passage than to draw it. This particular strip is showing the first two panels from a retelling of story of Tamar and Judah. It probably could have used a couple more panels at the end, to retell the part where Judah accuses Tamar of being sleasy and she proves herself more righteous than he...but I guess I didn't get that far that day.

See the full page this panel is from.

Jessica's Website -> Art -> Cartooning

This page Copyright © 2008 by Jessica Winblad