I made the mistake of asking people to post Art School Scum (still available for free!) around art colleges at a time that everyone was breaking up for Summer. In retrospect, it was a bit of a silly time to be offering up free content in exchange for a bit of cynical viral marketing…
But, thanks to living in New Cross and being so close to Goldsmiths, it is clear they have returned. The art students are back and now is the time to start printing out your favourite Art School Scum pages and posting them up as much as possible!
To kickstart the fun, here’s the Ontario College of Art & Design by Kayla, Toronto.
I’m told some security guards had to be avoided in the making of this midnight guerilla exhibit!
Download and read Art School Scum for free here!
So last week I offered Art School Scum for free in exchange for me deputising you all as part of the ventedspleen.com street team (ahem). My challenge being: print out your favourite pages and stick them inside/outside/near an art school of your choice.
Exciting mobile art exhibition or cynical viral marketing campaign? You decide. No… you’re wrong. It’s the former.
I asked you to email me with photos of the results and agreed to blog the best ones as they came in. My favourite will get an original illustration inked on a 6″ x 6″ piece of canvas.
This one made me smile:
“The Art School is Dead … Long live Art School Scum”
Psalter Lane Art School, Sheffield re-opens for one last exhibition.
‘Art School Scum R.I.P’ by Tom Humberstone
Preview – 20th June 2009
Runs – till it rains or gets taken down
Open to all
– Klive, Sheffield
Deadline for entires is the end of August. If I continue to get photos of this standard, I may well send out several illustrations.
Art School Scum was the first ‘proper’ comic I ever attempted. I’d flirted with comics before of course – drawing them now and again in my sketchbooks but it was an awkward flirtation. Our eyes never met and I’m pretty sure comics was seeing someone else at the time.
Strained metaphors aside, it wasn’t until I was studying animation at art college that I really gave comics a go.
I was feeling a little disillusioned and uninspired by the work of my peers, a little annoyed at various aspects of art college, and frustrated at the length of time it took to produce thirty seconds of animated footage. So one night, I just grabbed a piece of scrappy A4 paper and drew Art School Scum page 1. It was, I admit, a heavily Daniel Clowes/Robert Crumb inspired piece but it felt good to have drawn it. I photocopied it the next day and posted it around college anonymously.
I produced another page every couple of weeks and continued to plaster them around college. I started getting some nice feedback via an email address I set up to maintain a thin veneer of anonymity – firstname.lastname@example.org – and before long I collected the comics in a book that I published by stealing a photocopying card at college. They sold in the student union bar and a local comic shop.
I’m fairly proud of the work, but it’s hard to look back at it now. I was aesthetically all over the place, trying to find my voice, and appropraiting various comic book styles because I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with the medium. AND YET and yet – it gave me the confidence to keep on trying. The encouragement people gave me after reading the comic was fundamental to me feeling like I might be okay at this.
For some people Art School Scum remains their favourite work of mine.
It’s always sold well for me. Even now. Roughly six years on. I estimate I’ve probably sold about 800 copies of the book since I first produced it. But now that the fourth printing is sold out, I’m reluctant to get it printed up again.
However, I want it to be available for people who want to pick I up, so I’m offering up a high quality PDF which you can download and either read on your computer or print out at home (you could make your own book out of it). The resolution is high enough for you to print it at A5 or A4 – possibly even A3.
The PDF is free. However, if you happen to download the comic and enjoy it, I have one favour to ask of you:
If you go to art school, work at/near one, have friends who go to one, or just happen to walk past one… could you print out your favourite page of Art School Scum and stick it to a wall/noticeboard/tutor’s door/studio or in the student union bar…
There’s a little watermark on each page asking people to go to my site to read more, and I think this would be a nice way of introducing people to alternative comics if they haven’t discovered them yet.
Anyway, you’re certainly under no obligation to do this, but if you do – send me a photo of where you’ve put the poster up. I’ll blog some of the more inventive photos at some point (and the best photo shall receive one of my canvas sketches).
DOWNLOAD ART SCHOOL SCUM PDF (10MB – READING COPY)
DOWNLOAD ART SCHOOL SCUM PDF (60MB – PRINTING COPY)