Larson also wrote an open letter in the “New Stuff” section of TheFarSide.com, revealing what his relationship with art looked like since his retirement in the mid-1990s and what had prompted him to bring the series back under a form or another. He noted that this section of the website is not a complete resurrection of The Far Side’s daily comics, but a place for him to explore, experiment and try new things as an artist.
“The day after I retired from syndication, it was good not to draw on a deadline,” writes Larson. “And after moving on to other interests, drawing just wasn’t on my to-do list. Things change. But a few years ago – and coming back to the subject in question – something happened in my life, and it started with a blocked pen…. Despite my retirement, I still had intermittent ties to comics, including my wife’s and my personal Christmas card. Once a year, I sat down to face Santa Claus, and each year it started with the same ritual: me cursing then cleaning my clogged pen. ”
He continued, “So a few years ago – finally fed up with my once-loyal but now reliable and treacherous pen – I decided to try a digital tablet. I didn’t know anything about these devices, but I was hoping it would get me through my annual test Christmas card. I had one, I turned it on, and lo and behold, something totally unexpected happened: in a few moments, I still had fun drawing. I was amazed by all the tools the thing offered, all the creative potential it contained. I didn’t know how far these things had gone. Perhaps aptly, the first thing I drew was a caveman. ”
Larson concluded his letter (which you can read in full here), that he is ready to begin this “New Stuff” section, by writing: “So here it is. I have my coffee, I have this cool gadget, and I don’t have deadlines. And – to borrow from Sherlock Holmes – the game is on. ”
The original version of The Far Side operated from 1980 to 1995, was not only a huge success in the world of newspaper tapes, but became a craft industry in itself, with t-shirts, coffee mugs, greeting cards, etc. Le New York Times previously, Larson’s comic had probably generated about $ 500 million in revenue at the time, an amount that would likely be higher if it were adjusted for inflation.
(Cover photo by Glen Martin / The Denver Post via Getty Images)
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