Some of the comics in my next edition of Big Chooch are related to the Jersey Shore. I wanted to do something with the beach but not just the beach. Collectively, the comics remain a mix of diary comics from today and memoir comics from my and my family's past. So, just to start somewhere, I begin penciling pigeons and seagulls. Not everything looked like a pigeon or gull initially.
Pigeons and gulls are the two birds I encountered the most as an adolescent, but as I sketched I knew I needed a stand-alone story...a gag...something. The gull and pigeon has a loose connection to the many of the comics inside (city and beach), but I wanted a little more juice out of it.
For example, my first cover was a family member shooshing a butterfly and subsequent covers were fragments from comics inside those editions.
But I have no pigeon or seagull story for this comic...so I needed the cover to stand alone as its own one-panel comic.
I drew a gull and a pigeon facing one another and the gag began to come out of the act of drawing...drawing is thinking.
Side Note: the scan on the right is graphite pencil, not ink. But it is what pencil can look like scanned...a lot like ink.
As I drew, my gull looked pissy right from the beginning and the pigeon...indifferent. But that wasn't enough for a stand-alone, one-panel comic. What would a gull be pissy about?
Why is the gull pissy? Is the gull a gull...or is the gull a metaphor?
I remember being called a shoobie at the beach...and not knowing what it meant--a derisive sneery label for people who go to the beach for a vacation or brief visit. Ok, so the gull is a Jersey shore resident and the pigeon is city kid.
Still, it's not quite enough...it's barely a story...and certainly not a gag. So, I added some cigarette butts and ash around the pigeon--litter left behind.
How many vacationers leave trash on the beach in their awful, self-absorbed wake?