ArmzRace is one of the many exhibitors at this year’s Zine Fest Houston. Below is an interview with Cej.
How long have you been making comics?
Unofficially, I’ve been creating comics off and on most of my life. Officially, ArmzRace began in 1998 when Mark! and I decided that we wanted to get serious about making comics. We realized that the only way to get anything done was to set some (realistic) goals and then make each other stick to them. Since then, we have prodded each other along, sharing critiques and information about new techniques, and hopefully we have become better as creators and produced some great comics. Over the years, other creators, like Hardtraveling Hero have joined in the ArmzRace merriment.
Why do you create comics? Why do you like comics?
I’ve been reading comics for as long as I can remember. They are a wonderful medium for expressing the whole range of human emotions and ideas. They are relatively low-cost to create, but they have tremendous scope, really only limited by the creator’s imagination. And while there are some “good practices,” there are no hard and fast rules on how they must be done. Sometimes I feel stymied because my artwork isn’t as good as I’d like it to be, but then I remember that there have been some great comics that only had stick people. That encourages me to keep creating.
What is something you’re looking forward to about the 2011 zine fest Houston?
Comic creation tends to be a fairly individual endeavor, so I’m hoping to meet other like-minded creators. It’s always great to see what other people are working on, because it helps inspire me in my own work. Public feedback is always good for personal development, but it means even more when it comes from people who have been in the trenches. Additionally, I’d love to meet other people who’d like to join the ArmzRace and create comics alongside me.
What will be on your table at this year’s zine fest?
ArmzRace will have about a half dozen mini-comics from Cej, Mark!, and the Hardtraveling Hero. They range from short fiction to autobiography to gag comics. I’m hoping to finish my fourth mini prior to the Fest (somehow May 21 snuck up on me!). It will be a book of political comics and commentary called Cannon Fodder.
Any parting thoughts?
I want to encourage people to come out to Zine Fest and support the arts scene in Houston. Likewise, I invite everyone to take a look at http://ArmzRace.com I enjoy getting people’s feedback, and I’d love to have other creative types join the Race!