King-Cat Love

Fri 10/2/2009

Back when I was a kid, I used to have the exact same reaction every time I saw a movie. Without fail, I would walk out of the theater and turn to my Mom, or Dad, or one of my sisters, and say, "That was the BEST MOVIE I have EVER seen!!!"

It was as though the act of watching a movie was SO enjoyable, SO pleasurable, that it overloaded my mind and wiped out any knowledge of other movies I had previously seen.

As an adult, this is exactly how I feel when I read an issue of King-Cat Comics and Stories by John Porcellino.

Every time a new issue arrives in the mail, I stop whatever it is I'm doing and sit down and read it straight through. And every time I turn the last page and look down at the back cover, I think, "Man... that was the best issue of King-Cat EVER!"

A few weeks ago, I received issue #70, which officially marks TWENTY YEARS of King-Cat. It is a remarkable achievement and I hope some of you will check it out. If you are into minicomics, King-Cat is as good as it gets. As I have mentioned before, I had a few false starts with King-Cat, but once it connected, it was straight to my heart, and I was hooked for life.

John is on tour right now, to celebrate 20 years of King-Cat, and his new book Map of My Heart. He was at SPX, which I missed, but luckily he was also the visiting artist this week up here at CCS.

If a visiting artist is staying at CCS for a few days, a faculty member will usually take the artist out to dinner. Last night this task fell upon me, for which I will be eternally grateful. John came over to my place and made some dinner while he and Max and I sat around for about four hours, talking about comics and life.

I know I'm always freaking out on here about my comics "heroes." I have been SO lucky, to be able to meet many of the artists which inspired me to become a comics artist. But John Porcellino is the cartoonist with which I feel the most kinship. I'll never be able to draw like Jeff Smith, I'll never be as smart as Scott McCloud, I'll never be as precise as Don Rosa. But I feel like John Porcellino is doing what I'm trying to do. He's just making his comics and struggling to get them out into the world, to share them with people. He self-publishes with pride, and will continue to do so, no matter what.

I've been printing Phase 7 #007 like crazy for the last week and I spent most of today addressing and stuffing envelopes (all subscribers should have their copies by the end of next week!) It just happened that John needed to go to the post office too, to mail off some copies of his new book, so we walked together - him with two small boxes, and me with three cloth bags filled with about 75 copies of Phase 7.

For me, that walk to the post office, with copy upon copy of my new comic, just waiting to be read by my closest friends and loved ones, is one of the most sacred moments I experience as a cartoonist. And walking it today with John Porcellino by my side, a guy who's been walking it for 13 years longer than I have, is something I will always remember.

2 comments on this entry

Two days ago I re-read A Perfect Example and fell in love with John Porcellino all over again. It's funny, It took me a year or so of seeing it in my local library to finally take it out and now I think it's one of the best books I've ever read. The honesty destroys me.

Now that I've started reading actual King-cat issues as they come out I feel so pumped to make comics after reading em'.

So good!

Oh, and congrats on the new Phaze 7, I shall have to acquire a copy in the near future.

He swapped me one of these for Eclectic #3. It was really cool to meet him. I especially love his comics of the Greek philosophers and Zen masters. I think that is my favorite thing that he does.

Andy Oct03

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