Monday, March 26, 2012
Helping Richard Thompson
Today I begin a new adventure as the assistant to NCS Cartoonist of the Year, Richard Thompson. I will be helping out with art duties on his comic strip, Cul de Sac.
As some of you may know, in 2009 Richard announced he was diagnosed with Parkinson's.
Earlier this year, he took a hiatus from Cul de Sac to focus on treatment for his Parkinson's and he allowed some guest cartoonists to take over the strip while he was away.
During his hiatus, I got an e-mail from Richard asking if I'd like to help out on the strip.
I grew up wanting to draw a comic strip.
As a kid, I would read the comics in the newspaper every single day.
In elementary school, I drew Snoopy, Garfield, Popeye and other comic strip characters on classmates' folders for money.
That's how much I wanted to do it.
So of course, the opportunity to work on one of the best comic strips of all time was a no-brainer.
It's my childhood dream come true.
But it's more than that.
For me, first and foremost, it's about helping out a friend.
It's no secret that Parkinson's sucks.
If you know anyone who has it, you know how much more difficult it makes even the simplest of tasks.
Imagine trying to draw, ink or letter a comic strip that's printed about four inches wide in a newspaper.
And imagine doing that every day, week after week.
Those deadlines for a healthy person are hell, for someone dealing with something like Parkinson's, the deadlines are damn near impossible.
Lending Richard a hand, a drawing hand, is an honor.
Many people repeat this sentiment, Richard is one of the nicest, kindest people on the planet.
He really is. And I'm not just saying that because he's my boss.
Have no doubt, this change in Cul de Sac is a little blip to the dedicated CdS fan. Richard is manning the ship, writing every strip in the way only Richard can. I'm here to lend a hand with the art when and where he needs it.
Now if you will excuse me, Richard's coffee cup needs to be refilled and it's a 700 mile trip to get there.
Cul de Sac is back.
Link: Help fund the fight against Parkinson's disease by purchasing Chris Sparks' book, "Team Cul de Sac."