This is it. This is the end. God bless the Capers, they've literally changed my life. That likely sounds ridiculous - but it's the honest-to-goodness truth.
When I was young, I was an avid artist, drew comics all the time, and loved to draw. But, when I moved out to go to college, I lost all my personal space and a tremendous amount of time, and ... lol, "lost my way," so to speak. I abandoned my passion.
I wanted to get back into it, for years, but ... I just couldn't do it. It wasn't till several years after graduation, and moving twice into two different towns looking for work, that I found the inspiration to sketch out some ridiculous little cartoons about a drunken bum and a smoking barber who sucked at cutting hair.
I got a laugh from a co-worker and a friend from high school from the little strip. And it was the inspiration to do more. I had a few more fun ideas that I sketched out and shared, but didn't know what to do with. But my zeal for drawing, and the emergence of something you might call a "routine" for drawing returned.
I began to try and make a regular statement with the Capers, and for more than five years now I've been publishing new pages every week! What a commitment, and what a long time! It was a chance to practice telling stories in an episodic format, to develop characters that did more than sit on a corner and gibber at each other about nothing, and artistically, it completely introduced me to digital artistry (mostly colouring, I still draw with a pencil, which I'm quite happy about.)
But I realized, drawing these little cartoons was far more therapeutic and mentally relieving than I ever would have imagined.
For a long while I was very aware that I was problematically sarcastic, both at home and at work. It was all for the sake of humour, but ... it was overwhelming. I began to loathe myself. I'd come home from work and lament about the outbursts I'd had at work, because I just was unable to control myself.
But through these years working on webcomics, I've literally shed so much of that element of my character, and for the best. I don't call people names, I can take direction much more happily and have no outbursts. I think it's all for the best. And looking back on it now, it's all because I found a medium that eased those frustrations, a coping mechanism.
I know it's nothing especially epiphanous to say that I was able to cope with disappointments, frustrations and other conflicts through doing art, but I never really considered what I was doing as "art." What WAS an epiphany for me, though, was to discover not so much that I'd been coping through art - because that wasn't at all what I'd set out to do - but rather, than I'd been so changed by the process.
I don't know when or why, but I looked at myself and realized that all those outbursts were gone. I was back to being friendly. I wasn't striving to find something problematic at all turns. And I wasn't even aware I'd been travelling this course.
The Capers have literally taken me to a better place, while ironically, the characters were characteristically static. A few years ago I had a dream to turn the Capers into a more episodic story, with the far-way ambition of having them go back in time and do things with dinosaurs (which ultimately began with On To Destiny which I would have begun writing in Summer 2015!)
From that point on, the characters were on a gradual journey to get to where this story arrived - - deserted in the Days of Dinosaurs, with no idea how to return home. And, this episode has been the most fun to work on - - drawing dinosaurs is the best!
This episode brings us to the end of where I always dreamed of taking these characters, and I think, too, it's also a fitting end to the strip. This Epilogue, while contrived, takes a tongue-in-cheek look at what some of these extraordinarily one-dimensional characters would do with the rest of their lives.
More specifically, this Epilogue tells us why they're leaving King St. There's a lot of world out there to see. A lot of joys to be gained, and ultimately, that's what these characters had to learn, be provoked to see, and to be motivated to find.
And this is why I'm leaving King St., too. It's time to enjoy some new and different things, while knowing this is has been a priceless time in my life.
So ... Thank You. To anyone who came all this way with these degenerates and me, I hope you enjoyed the journey.
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