With Rip Haywire celebrating its sixth birthday this month, we bring you a guest post from creator Dan Thompson!
Like most cartoonists, I grew up drawing but hating to draw the hard stuff, like people, animals, nature "... things that looked real. I started professional cartooning working all across the board, in magazine cartoons, animation, character design and greeting cards. I seriously don't think I ever turned down work.
Today, I work on three comic strips with Universal Uclick and GoComics -- four if you count my reruns of Lost Sheep "... How did this happen?
Rip Haywire was the strip I always dreamed of doing. I thought it would be great to do a comic like the classic strips -- Terry and the Pirates, Captain Easy and Dick Tracy -- but with a twist "... adding humor. Two days after I sent Rip Haywire out in a submission packages to the syndicates, Ted Rall from United Media called me and offered me a contract. Easy peasy -- but trust me, that was the only easy part!
When Guy and Rodd retired from Brevity, I took over the art. Previously, I had helped Rodd change the panel art into comic strip form for the past few years. When Dick Rogers retired from the kids' puzzle KIDSPOT, I took that over, too! If anybody else retires, I might need to work nights and weekends!
I get inspired by comic strip reprint books. There is just something about looking back at the glory days of comic strips and having this desire to rip them off "... I mean "... to look at the quality work they created and get inspired to make a fortune like those old guys "... no, wait "... what was the question?
I got serious about comics when I discovered Calvin and Hobbes. (Yep, I found it first.) There were so many great comics during the ten-year span that C&H ran that it was impossible to not love comics. My favorites back then were Brian Basset's Adam and Jim Meddick's Robotman. Today, I enjoy so many comics, but Pooch Cafe, Off the Mark and Retail (which is not on GoComics, so just forget I mentioned it!) are comics that always make me laugh.