Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Video: Charles Schulz (1963)

When you draw a comic strip, if you're going to wait for inspiration, you'll never make it.

Here's 4 1/2 minutes of a 1963 documentary on Charles Schulz, with some good advice about getting ideas:

His advice — about becoming professional enough to sit down, and deliberately come up with ideas at will — is true.

When people who are not cartoonists find out that I am a cartoonist, they will often say how wonderful it must be to be creative all the time. Sometimes I nod and agree, but really, the truth is that it isn't wonderful.

It's a job.

It's a job I love, but it's real work.

To produce regular, consistent, commercial work requires discipline. Even if don't feel funny that day, or you don't feel "inspired," the work has to be done, you have to market it, you have to pursue the sale.


Sandra said...

I liked the comment Schulz made about enjoying drawing a good idea...Lynn Johnston said much the same thing to me once...that the best ideas were the most fun to draw.

Also, couldn't help but notice all the kids in the pre-seatbelt age, all squirming over the seats!
Thanks for posting.

Mike Lynch said...

Yes, that feeling of excitement, the rush to get it all down on paper -- now THAT'S a GREAT part of cartooning.

Thanks for your comment, Sandra.

josembielza said...

Amen to that, Mike. The rule was... 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration?

Brian Fies said...

That to me is pretty much the definition of professionalism (aside from the more practical definition of getting paid for it). Almost anyone can do good work when they feel energized and inspired. When you're sick and cranky and would rather be anywhere except the keyboard or drawing board, and still put out work that's as good as your best, I think that's being a pro.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing this, Mike. A wonderful view of the master at work.

Jeff P.

Matt Jones said...

Aww-great clip Mike. Wish the rest of the film was online. Are you familiar with the Roland Collection of art films?
Check out the clips on Ralph Steadman & comic artists.