27 8 / 2014
Seeing Aaron Diaz recently deal with criticism quite badly reminded me of the times in my life where I did the same thing…
Throughout my life, taking criticism really badly has always been a huge problem.
One of my earliest internet memories is from 1997, when someone on the Anime Fan Art Mailing List told me my art style was “hard to get used to” but “interesting”. It wasn’t even a mean-spirited comment… yet I totally went off on him.
When I think back on it, I’m kinda surprised that mailing list tolerated my presence since then.
Bryan O’Malley was also on that mailing list. I am name-dropping him because I am a name-dropper. But also he was pretty nice to me and I appreciate it.
As the years went by, my ways of dealing with criticism became kinda weird. Inasmuch that I would always be dismissive of it, if not outright hostile toward it, at FIRST, but afterward, as the months would go by, I would very gradually and begrudgingly follow that advice.
The most recent example would have to be when I was doing Chapter 12 of Girly. While I was doing it, I got no end of complaints about how sloppy my art style became. And my response was invariably to tell people to fuck off. I’d argue with my readers in my own forums and even post on 4chan on more than one occasion to tell people off.
Then I spent the next three years working pretty hard on cleaning up my linework.
And now the quality of my art on You Suck compared to Girly Chapter 12 should be pretty obvious. Of course, I still get the occasional comment that my work is sloppy, only this time when I tell these critics to fuck off, I feel completely justified.
I’m not sure what my point is… Aside from the fact that you shouldn’t feel apprehensive about criticizing your favorite cartoonists. Because even if we seem to be dicks about it at first, as long as we have some semblance of self-awareness, we’ll EVENTUALLY take your advice to heart.
And I’m hoping that will eventually be the case with Diaz.
I mean, it SEEMS like he’ll eventually figure stuff out.
He’s certainly not as horribly dense as Mike Terricano anyway