Dana Zemack Creates Comics for ‘Everything You Ever Felt’ [Back Pages]
Dana Zemack has been making art with stick figures for years and years now, taking the simplest of artistic styles and imbuing it with a real sense of charm and a quirky heart. An animator and cartoonist, Zemack has now taken to Kickstarter to fund a print collection of some of her work.
Called How I Feel Today: Comics For Everything You Ever Felt, the collection showcases her ability to pick a particular feeling and glide it across a page, sparking recognition and connection with each image. And, as if proof were needed of that connection, her Kickstarter has already sailed right on past the target of $4800 it was looking for. We spoke to Zemack about how she got into comics, and just why she wanted to make comics "for everything you ever felt."
ComicsAlliance: What’s is How I Feel Today about?
Dana Zemack: My comics are (and always have been, since age 12!) about the things I think and feel. But what I've learned in sharing my work online over the past several years is that it's not just me experiencing all that stuff --- as it turns out, we're all pretty similar (who knew?) The range of, "OMG this is so me today" responses I've gotten to my comics over the years has been both touching and extraordinarily powerful for me --- I gotta say, it's nice to know I'm not the only crazy one!
So the narrative of this comics anthology is pretty simple: It's about the things we feel on any given day. And it's funny! (Because it's true.)
CA: What was the genesis of the project?
DZ: I started making stick figure comics when I was 12 years old. I'd draw them in the notes that we'd pass around in the halls at school. Then, just like now, drawing comics was a way to hash through whatever I was experiencing at the time. Many years and many thousands of stick figures later, my comic's been through all kinds of things and also reached people all over the world. Those little stick figures have come a long way!
I thought of doing a comics anthology while I was going through all my work from the past few years, and realized that while each comic has its own little story, there's a much bigger story that lives in the way they all fit together.
CA: What do you feel connects the comics together?
DZ: More than anything, I think that people will see themselves in it. Sure, that means that we're each a little less unique than we often think we are, but it also means that we're much less alone. Feeling connected is important, and if my comics can make someone laugh and feel understood at the same time, then this is a story worth sharing.
CA: Why take the book to Kickstarter?
DZ: Kickstarter is about community, and I had a good feeling that the community around me and around my comics would embrace the project and help me get there. And making it a group effort was the way to go! The support and excitement has been truly wonderful so far.
CA: What stage are you at with the project? How much have you already completed?
DZ: Right now I'm in the midst of going through hundreds and hundreds of comics and illustrations to curate the collection that will be included in the anthology and develop the narrative of the book. My apartment is, quite literally, covered in paper.
CA: Now you've hit your goal, what’s your estimated delivery on the final collection?
DZ: I expect to ship out the printed books this November! Maybe even a little earlier.
How I Feel Today: Comics For Everything You Ever Felt has already met the $4800 target it was aiming for. You can find it running on Kickstarter until 24 May 2015.