#733 – who does she think she is

I think this is one of my finest pages. The layouts, the characterization, and to me some iconic imagery. I really attached myself to Jane at this point, in the way I attached myself to all the main cast.

On my trip to Denmark when I was drawing this, I was in the middle of a manic period. I was traveling alone and teaching at a school whose philosophy meant something to me. I was directly engaged with the students and faculty on a daily basis, in ways schools generally lack the resources to allow. The possibilities of art and life were opening up everywhere I looked. Denmark was cold and my life after-hours was pretty non-existent - I was in the studio alongside the students most nights, just like in my college days, plugging away at comics. The work itself sustained me.

After the class wrapped I went to France briefly to visit my aunt, and there the depressive crash happened. My personal life was a mirage. I was rightfully despised by all. Dying could never make up for my lack of worth - I needed to have never existed. I spent hours crying in despair, attempting to scan a single comic page on a broken laptop, while my aunt puzzled over my hysterical paranoia.

I came home from the trip knowing my friends, loved ones and acquaintances simply don't have time to hate me in such a coordinated way, that it's selfish to imagine they would. I knew I needed to let go of this fear even when there might be truth to it, that the worst case isn't even that bad, that there are more important things than being broadly visible and liked. With age I've seen how foolish a goal that would've been, anyway. Becoming less visible has not only been healthy - it's been inevitable - and there's joy in acceptance.

11 thoughts on “#733 – who does she think she is

  1. You are awesome and your comic is awesome.

  2. Your insights into your mental health are astounding. Thank you for sharing. Combined with the comfort of a familiar comic, It's giving me the courage to look inward myself.

  3. This commentary is so juicy, I absolutely love it. Thank you

  4. That sounds very familiar, Meredith. Thank you for sharing. I am still paranoiac, but getting past this despair too.

  5. Panel 4 Hanna would translate really well into a Funko Pop! doll.

    1. I was also going to say this. A very angry Funko Pop.

  6. At this point did you have and for Mar and Jane's romantic future, or did that develop later?

  7. The commentary about your friends not having the time to hate you in a coordinated fashion reminds me of the Phillip Lopate poem "We Who Are Your Closest Friends".

  8. After a second look, that roof seems very familiar in its rendition. I think we all have been there at least once. Warm still from the daylight sun, warmer than other materials at that point in the evening; a bitumeny smell that while not pleasant, it is not unpleasant either… it's just right for the scene. The wind is cool up there, and the sounds of the street are muffled, and the warm, porous, ever-so-slightly squishy texture of the roofing feels good on the plants of your feet.

  9. god jane's look here is everything i aspire to as a wlw

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