So, here’s the formal announcement: Easel Ain’t Easy is going on hiatus. I can get awfully sentimental and wordy, so I’ll try my best to keep this brief, but I wanted to explain why I’m stepping back from this project that has become, in some ways, a very living extension of myself.
Well, the short answer is I need a break. Not a week-off-while-I-visit family break or a weekends-are-for-having-fun break, but just a flat out BREAK. When I started this comic 13 months ago I was working a full time job and, aside from writing my graphic novel, I didn’t have a regular creative outlet. This comic swept in and saved my creative life (to be melodramatic) by giving me a place to flex my drawing muscle, reflect on my day, develop good creative habits, and share my life with friends and family. Along the way it has opened other artistic doors for me, served as a kind of therapy, and laid the groundwork for some wonderful new friendships. I am so touched by those of you who have read from the beginning, or anywhere along the way. Your encouragement has kept me going!
This past summer I left my job and began work as a full-time illustrator, focusing the bulk of my energy on my graphic novel. I continued drawing Easel Ain’t Easy for many reasons, and I’m so glad that I did, and I suspect it won’t be that long before I return to it. But I’ve found that what was once an enjoyable and relaxing way to incorporate drawing into my daily life has recently felt more like a stress, on top of an already rigorous creative project. I had high hopes that I would also spend time this year developing my illustration portfolio and that has yet to happen. I thought, initially, that I could use Easel Ain’t Easy as a testing grounds for experimentation and innovation, but instead I feel I’ve fallen into a pattern, both in my art and storytelling. During this break I hope to really push myself in both of those areas. And here is the good news… I want to share that process with you!
I may not be posting (mostly) daily comics, but I intend to post new content each week, whether sketches, graphic short-stories, illustrations, doodles, or previews of my graphic novel. If you notice a week has gone by without something to show for it, wag a stick at me. My motivation for this hiatus is not laziness or frustration, it is the desire to break out of my creative rut. Quality over quantity, to be succinctly cliche. I truly appreciate your support and enthusiasm this far – a huge reason this has been fun for me is because of the wonderful way you readers interact with the comic. Thank you, so much. Like I said, Easel Ain’t Easy will be back, and hopefully better. In the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy the rest of the ride with me… who knows where it will take us!