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Mitch Andrew Clem
Born September 15, 1982 (1982-09-15) (age 27)
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Occupation Cartoonist

Mitch Andrew Clem (born September 15, 1982) is an American cartoonist best known for his web comics Nothing Nice To Say, San Antonio Rock City, and his current-running series, My Stupid Life. [1]

Contents

Biography

Early life

Clem was born in Minneapolis, on September 15, 1982. He moved around through various locations in Minnesota, including Coon Rapids, Brooklyn Park, Andover, Melrose, Duluth, and St. Cloud. He says that this is a result of his "rampant inability to sit still for more than six months at a time."[2]

Clem became interested in comic strips as a child, reading the newspaper strips. He cites Calvin and Hobbes and The Far Side as the most influential on him in those days. He also credits Looney Toons as being a childhood influence on his interest in cartooning.[2][3]

In the later part of elementary school, he began developing an interest in superhero comics Batman and the Flash. In high school, his interest in comic books grew to include what he calls "really weird indie books," The Tick, Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, Sandman, Milk & Cheese, and the crime works of Brian Michael Bendis. He had no interest in superheroes at that time, until he read Watchmen, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, and Daredevil: Guardian Devil.[2] He is now an avid fan of DC Comics characters, which he references frequently in his blog and in his autobiographical comic, My Stupid Life.

Present-Day

In the Summer of 2005, Clem moved from Minneapolis, MN to San Antonio, TX, where he currently resides with his fiancee Amanda. He works full time as a cartoonist and freelance illustrator.[3]

Career

Mitch Clem's career as a cartoonist and writer first took published form in the late 1990's with his zine, Summer's Over, of which he published ten issues. He put out his last issue in 2001, when he switched his focus from print to webcomics with the launch of Nothing Nice to Say. [3]

Webcomics

Nothing Nice to Say

On February 25, 2002, Clem first published the strip for which he is best known, Nothing Nice To Say, which follows Minneapolis punks Blake and his roommate Fletcher.[4]

The comic has survived many hiatuses (the lengthiest lasting from August 14, 2004, to January 31, 2005)[5] and much artistic evolution (probably the most drastic change being a switch from full-color to black and white comics, a decision Clem credits partially to discovering his being partially colorblind)[6], but it remains, to this day, one of the longest lasting comics on the internet. The strip is updated on an arbitrary basis.

Dark Horse Comics published an anthology of his Nothing Nice To Say "Volume 2" comic strip in October, 2008.

Barrett's Lament

While living in Minnesota, Clem started working on a superhero web comic called Barrett's Lament with his friend Matt Lind. The series ran between February and May 2004, lasting 19 issues before stopped, never completing the first story arc, "Lo, There Shall Come a Robot." Lind explained on the site that Mitch was no longer involved after having moved to Texas.[7]

The Coffee Achievers

While working on Nothing Nice, Clem also teamed up with fellow web comic artist Joe Dunn, of Joe Loves Crappy Movies. Together they worked on the short series The Coffee Achievers, which totaled nine chapters. Achievers ran from February 1, 2005 to February 10, 2006.[8]

Joe and Monkey

While he was on hiatus from Nothing Nice in 2005, Clem guest authored the web comic Joe and Monkey, created by Zach Miller for November 7, 2004.[9] He later guest authored the strip for the entire month of January, 2005, claiming that he lost a bet to Miller.[10]. His month on Joe and Monkey led directly into a return from his longest hiatus from Nothing Nice to Say to-date[11]. Clem would return to guest author Joe and Monkey two more times, once by himself[12] and once in collaboration with Penny Arcade writer Jerry Holkins[13].

San Antonio Rock City

Mitch and Victoria from San Antonio Rock City

On January 22, 2006, Clem launched his first autobiographical comic series San Antonio Rock City, which centered on him and his then-girlfriend Victoria after moving to San Antonio, TX from Minnesota. The strip generally followed a four-panel format arranged in a square with using the first for the title panel showing Clem and Victoria, parodying American Gothic. Occasionally, there are a few six-strip comics. San Antonio Rock City was his main focus for a while until he canceled it due to his split with his girlfriend Victoria. [14] The entire series will be collected in the upcoming book My Stupid Life, Vol. 1 from New Reliable Press.

Kittens!

Clem began a new strip called Kittens! The Comic on September 6, 2006. The strip has no dialogue and features a small kitten being curious and playful about the world around it.[15] Kittens ran every Wednesday for six weeks, when on October 19, 2006, Clem announced in his blog that Kittens was on a break for the week, would return the following week and that "surprises are in store for all."[16] To date, there have been no more issues.

My Stupid Life

On January 16, 2008 Clem began his newest series, My Stupid Life. As the name implies, the strip is autobiographical, in a style reminiscent of San Antonio Rock City. The comic also co-stars his fiancé, Amanda (Nation of Amanda). Amanda sometimes colors the strips in watercolors.

On April 15, 2009, Clem announced on his blog that he would be releasing a new book, My Stupid Life: Volume One, through New Reliable Press in the Fall of 2009. The book would collect the current run of My Stupid Life, as well as the complete San Antonio Rock City series, Clem's first foray into autobiographical comics

In Print

Collections

Anthologies

Other Work

Clem regularly makes concert flyers and album covers for punk rock bands. He has also made album covers for the bands The Ergs!, Andrew WK, The Steinways, Shang-A-Lang, Bomb the Music Industry!, Something Fierce, and others. He also created the art for every record in Vinyl Collective's Under the Influence series, featuring Lemuria, Off With Their Heads, Drag the River, Fake Problems, These Arms Are Snakes, and more.

His artwork is commissioned regularly for Razorcake magazine and the Kansas City Pitch. He also authors Punk Matters, a monthly column about punk music in the San Antonio Current.

On June 25, 2007, Clem’s blog Rain of Bastards was selected by the editors of PC World magazine for their article "100 Blogs We Love," under the "Arts and Culture" section.[17]

References

  • Minnesota Public Radio (online), The world's first online punk cartoon, by Tim Post, Minnesota Public Radio, March 14, 2003
  • PC World Magazine (online) 100 Blogs We Love, By the Editors of PC World, Monday, June 25, 2007 1:00 AM PDT (retrieved 11/8/07 6:03 pdt)
  • Stumblebum Studios, Interview with Mitch Clem, by Dave Sherrill (retrieved 11-7-07)
  • Rock Star Journalist, Mitch Clem interview, September 18th, 2006
  • Muse magazine, An Interview with Mitch Clem, 06/10/2003
  • comixtalk.com, Mitch Clem Has A Lot To Say, by Al Schroeder, March 2006 Issue

Notes

  1. ^ Post, Tim (March 14, 2003). "The world's first online punk cartoon.". Minnesota Public Radio. http://news.minnesota.publicradio.org/features/2003/03/14_postt_punkcartoon. Retrieved 2007-10-31.  
  2. ^ a b c Clem, Mitch; Lind, Matt. ""About"". Barrett's Lament. http://www.barrettslament.com/about.php. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  3. ^ a b c Jones, William (2009-04-09). ""Corporate Rock and Comics Are For Suckers"". http://graphicnovelreporter.com/content/corporate-rock-and-comics-are-suckers-interview-mitch-clem-interview. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  4. ^ Clem, Mitch (2002-02-25). ""Evolution of a 90’s Punk"". Nothing Nice To Say. http://www.mitchclem.com/nothingnice/index.php?pageNum_Recordset2=0. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  5. ^ Clem, Mitch (2004-08-14). ""The End."". http://www.mitchclem.com/nothingnice/203/. Retrieved 2004-08-14.  
  6. ^ Clem, Mitch (2008-01-17). ""Mitch Clem Versus the Establishment"". http://rainofbastards.livejournal.com/172819.html. Retrieved 2008-01-17.  
  7. ^ Lind, Matt (2005-05-15). ""Blah!"". Barrett's Lament. http://www.barrettslament.com/index.php?id=24. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  8. ^ Clem, Mitch; Dunn, Joe (2006-02-10). "The Coffee Achievers". http://www.coffeeachievers.net/. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  9. ^ Clem, Mitch; Miller, Zach (2004-11-07). ""Guest Strip by Mitch Clem"". Joe and Monkey. http://www.joeandmonkey.com/index.php?comic=103. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  10. ^ Clem, Mitch; Miller, Zach (2005-01-03). ""A New Era Dawns"". Joe and Monkey. http://www.mitchclem.com/nothingnice/index.php?pageNum_Recordset2=203. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  11. ^ Clem, Mitch (2005-01-31). ""Back... AGAIN!"". Nothing Nice to Say. http://mitchclem.com/nothingnice/204/. Retrieved 2005-01-31.  
  12. ^ Clem, Mitch; Miller, Zach (2005-03-19). ""Guest Strip by Mitch Clem"". Joe and Monkey. http://www.joeandmonkey.com/index.php?comic=206. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  13. ^ Holkins, Jerry; Clem, Mitch; Miller, Zach (2005-07-06). ""Guest Strip by Jerry Holkins and Mitch Clem"". Joe and Monkey. http://www.joeandmonkey.com/index.php?comic=302. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  14. ^ Clem, Mitch (2006-01-22). ""Bartender"". San Antonio Rock City. http://www.mitchclem.com/rockcity/index.php?comic=1. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  15. ^ Clem, Mitch (2006-09-06). "Kittens! The Comic". http://www.mitchclem.com/kittens/archives/20060906.html. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  16. ^ Clem, Mitch (2006-10-19). "" Kittens is on a break"". What's so bad about being a punk rock faggot hippy, anyway?. http://rainofbastards.livejournal.com/126410.html. Retrieved 2006-11-30.  
  17. ^ ""100 Blogs We Love"". PC World. 2005-05-15. http://www.pcworld.com/article/id,133119/article.html. Retrieved 2007-07-08.  

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