I’ve said before that Optimistically Cynical is meant to be a pretty personal comic, but I don’t want it to be a fully autobiographical piece. That could get old and boring quick because it is a fairly limiting idea. What I really want the focus of the comic to be, aside from my experiences and observations, is a lampoon of young adult culture in America.
And how can you do that without picking on hipsters?
This particular comic was directly inspired by one of Alex’s friends who I worked with for awhile, who has some of the most bizarre and varied interests of anyone I’ve ever met. It always made me laugh to hear the latest thing he was looking at. I’m not even sure if yak hair scarves (which I think he actually showed me) and steam powered bicycles are weird enough to actually capture his diverse tastes.
Oh, if you are wondering if he looks like Orson, the answer is no. That was my attempt at the epitome of modern day hipster-ness. Horn rim glasses, messy hair, large ornate mustache, and a tight T-shirt with a kitty on it. Oh, and he’s drinking a Pabst Blue Ribbon and typing on his faux Mac.
I’m pretty far removed from the hipster scene. I have some of the same traits, but in general I’m an outsider looking into the culture. Alex and his friends are much more an actual part of it. I’ve always found it all fascinating. The hipsters are an interesting group.
In many ways hipsters share a lot of the characterizations of most young adults in America, they just take a lot of these aspects to extreme levels. Which is why I think they make great representatives for my comic.
Filo and Kingston are meant to be part of that culture too. It was a key consideration when I was coming up with their character designs.
The thing that I find really interesting about hipster culture is that it is not really well defined or documented. The closest thing I’ve found to a mainstream representation of it is IFC’s hit comedy sketch show, Portlandia. If you haven’t seen it seek it out, because it is very funny. It is also sort of the vibe I’m going for.
So if you are a hipster, well, I hope I do you justice. If you aren’t, well, I hope you enjoy laughing at them.