Comics

Peter Bagge on Mad, Hate, Art School, Urban Legends, and His Feminist Semi-Fans

Vice interviews the legendary libertarian cartoonist.

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The great cartoonist Peter Bagge—a frequent contributor to Reason—has just been interviewed by Vice. Here's an excerpt:

Click the pic to read the strip!
Peter Bagge

Q: You never really learned how to draw, but your comics look great. Most people who try to make comics without learning to draw make garbage. How did you figure out the drawing style you have?

A: Well, I can draw people and things that look like what I'm drawing while looking at it/them. But that bores me, and I assume it would bore the viewer of the results as well. So I prefer to draw from my mind's eye, and I take my chances from there. I'm almost never happy with the results, though, so I have a hard time arguing with anyone who thinks my art looks awful.

Initially, I was trying to duplicate the way old cartoons look, specifically ones directed by Bob Clampett. Later on, I was also mimicking early comics drawn by Harvey Kurtzman, in his old Hey Look! one-pagers and such.

It's a very polarizing drawing style, though. Goodreads has all these rave reviews of Woman Rebel [Bagge's comic-book biography of Margaret Sanger] by all these woman's studies majors who love the content of the book but give it three or four instead of five stars, simply because they can't stand my art!

Read the rest here; check out Bagge's new series of strips for Vice here; and visit Bagge's Reason archive here. And keep an eye peeled for his next Reason comic—a four-page dispatch from Cuba.