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12-19-2019 Girlfriend Blues

CREATIVE INSIGHTS:

Prior to starting this strip, I had drawn another comic strip years ago, using the same characters but about a different subject altogether.

I spent years as a dating coach for men, and continue to do so. As I helped more and more people, I began wanting to have a creative outlet to show some of the funnier sides of dating, from the perspective of how men AND women experience it.

I hadn’t drawn comics regularly in years, in part because drawing on paper takes a long time. Getting it to look right means drawing straight lines without your hand shaking, drawing in pencil first so you won’t mess up, then tracing over it in pen and STILL praying you don’t mess up. It can be very tedious, and can also start to hurt your hands after a while.

A couple years ago I learned about web comics, as well as various programs I could download to create digital comics. The big motivator for me was when I found out Apple’s iPad had an app you could download called “Procreate” that, combined with their newly released Apple Pen, made drawing things like straight lines, circles, and coloring a much faster process.

After looking at many YouTube videos to make sure I’d be able to do this the way I wanted to do it, I went on Craig’s list and bought an iPad/Apple Pen combo. This was the first comic I drew upon testing out the Procreate application. I liked how it came out, and decided, “Sure, let’s try and make a series out of this!”

– Harry Wilmington
Support on Patreon for just $1 a month – www.Patreon.com/DatingDisrupted

12-16-2019 Mission: Impossible

CREATIVE INSIGHTS:

I met this woman on an online dating app and took her out on a date. We had a great time, so a few days later I asked her for a second one.

I wanted to make it a surprise as to what we were doing and where we were going. I gave her the time of day I’d pick her up and told her what to wear. She asked me where I was taking her; I told her it was a surprise, but that she’d have a good time.

She went along with it, and on the day of I picked her up. While en route, I told her where we were going (downtown) and what we were doing (dancing). A huge sigh of relief came out of her, followed by an explanation: “Usually when I’m going on dates I tell one of my girl friends where I’m at, who I’m with, and what we’re doing. That way, if anything happens to me – no offense to you, of course – they know what I was doing.”

That’s when it hit me: as a man, I’ve literally NEVER HAD TO EVEN THINK ABOUT DOING THIS KIND OF THING.

Women have all kinds of experiences with men that threaten their safety, to the point that they have to take self-protection classes, carry all kinds of crazy items on them to help them get away should a man get too aggressive…. and even THEN, they’re still at risk of being yelled at, hit, or left stranded should she not give into whatever kinds of advances he wants during the evening.

Meanwhile, us men are wondering why a woman we just met may not want to go home with us right away, or get physical immediately. This comic is my attempt at humorously showing the kinds of prep women often go through just prior to going on a date with a new guy.
– Harry Wilmington
Support on Patreon for just $1 a month – www.Patreon.com/DatingDisrupted

12-06-2019 Mistaken Identity

CREATIVE INSIGHTS:

Yes, the woman’s name is really “Todd.” Believe it or not, this is actually based on a person I met in real life!

My Mom used to work at Big Brothers Big Sisters with a woman named Todd. Apparently, her dad really wanted a boy, and had already picked the name out. When the child came out a girl… well, her dad didn’t see any reason why he should change the name choice!

– Harry Wilmington
Support on Patreon for just $1 a month – www.Patreon.com/DatingDisrupted

12-05-2019 Premature Excitement

CREATIVE INSIGHTS:

I actually started drawings for many of these strips ten years ago!

I was working on a project that was going to have a comic strip element to it. As we were gearing up to launch it, I was told it would be a good idea to have at least 100 comics already drawn up, so that’s what I did.

For these particular comics, the main character – Phil – was going to be the guy that was always failing with women and constantly getting rejected. When the project went south due to various conflicts, I tucked all the comics away in a folder somewhere and just held onto them…

Fast-foward to this year: when I decided to put this comic strip online, the first thing I did was go through my old comics to see if any of them were still funny to me. Many of them still were, so many of the first few comic strips you’ll read are actually from this original set, only now much better looking and in color.

As the strip goes along, you’ll also notice that I didn’t feel like having to stick to the idea of Phil NEVER getting a date. For one, a lot of his experiences dating are based off of my own. In the beginning, I was horrible at dating, which is reflected in the strips where he gets rejected. However, over time I got better at it and wanted to be able to capture those experiences as well.

And two, I find there are just as many funny things about being successful in dating as there are in being bad at it.

Lastly, this strip introduces another female, “Jasmyn.” Many of the names used in the comic are either based on family members’ names or womens’ names that I’ve come across a lot in my life. I’ve met so many “Jasmine’s” over the years and felt it would be a good name to use, albeit with a different spelling.

Jasmyn is also the only character in the comic strip who is of mixed race. My niece, Peyton, is a mixed child, and I wanted her to be able to see herself represented in some way should she ever be allowed to read this strip – preferably when she’s older, lol

– Harry Wilmington
Support on Patreon for just $1 a month – www.Patreon.com/DatingDisrupted

12-04-2019 Compliments: Disrupted

CREATIVE INSIGHTS:

For men, it can feel like there’s a delicate balance between letting a woman know how beautiful he thinks she is, and making her feel like her looks are the ONLY thing she cares about.

For women, I imagine it’s also a hard thing to balance, but in a different way. On the one hand, they want to be respected for who they are as a person, and not just get complimented on their looks as if that’s all they bring to the table…

…and yet, at the same time, they’re the ones that constantly buy makeup, new outfits, work out, etc. to keep themselves looking good – partially for themselves, but also in order to attract someone enough to want to date them and keep them around.

It’s quite the conundrum, and one I wanted to illustrate in a funny way.

Note: the woman being complimented in the strip is named Mia. I had a close friend of mine in college with the same name, and it was the first one that popped in my head after drawing the character.

– Harry Wilmington
Support on Patreon for just $1 a month – www.Patreon.com/DatingDisrupted

12-03-2019 Elephant Memory

CREATIVE INSIGHTS:

Like I mentioned in yesterday’s comic, I wanted to show a diverse set of African-American characters in my comic strip. Here, we have another example of a character I haven’t really seen in comics too much – an albino woman named Sally. (The guy’s name is “Charlie,” named after the teddy bear I had as a kid. Plus, I had a cousin and a 2nd cousin named “Charles.”)

Note: for these various diversities, I don’t tend to really make mention of them in the comics. I like to think these characters already know each other (thus having gotten past the odd intro questions like “why are you so light??” or “why do you have a boy’s name when you’re a woman??) so they can be treated as normal – which they are.

Anyway… as for the subject matter, women’s memories tend to be much better than men’s, especially when it comes to any wrongdoing done on the man’s part.  Lord knows when I’m in relationships how often I’ve been reminded in future arguments about something I did months or years prior that I’ve already forgotten about!

– Harry Wilmington
Support on Patreon for just $1 a month – www.Patreon.com/DatingDisrupted

12-02-2019 Blind Date

CREATIVE INSIGHTS:

Get it?? It’s a “Blind Date” ’cause the woman is blind?? Ha!

But seriously… when creating this comic strip I wanted to have a display of a diverse group of women. All of the characters are African-American, but oftentimes we get pigeoned into certain stereotypes and features, and I wanted to expand that outlook. Thus, I thought it would be cool to have a blind woman be a regular part of the cast of characters!

The blind woman’s name is Alexis, which is also the name of one of my cousin’s. The guy with the curly hair is named Justin, which is my brother’s middle name. Yeaaaah… coming up with names for characters is hard, so it’s easy to pick names that are familiar so you won’t forget them. Hey, it worked for Matt Groening when he created “The Simpsons,” right??

– Harry Wilmington
Support on Patreon for just $1 a month – www.Patreon.com/DatingDisrupted