I think this is a fun question for any creator, because you put a lot of yourself into your work. I imagine most people feel at least some connection to every character they write, draw or play. And the same is true for me.
I feel some connection to all the characters I draw. The ones I created, even more-so. It can be hard to remember the ones I came up with, versus the ones Alex came up with or the ones we developed together. Not that it really matters all that much.
But I’ve always felt a special connection to our titular character, Black Snow. I’ve written in the past about how I feel he is an everyman, based largely on his underdog characteristics and his unprepared approach towards pretty much everything he does. He doesn’t have any special knowledge or privilege, he’s just a blue collar guy trying to better himself. And I can relate to that.
Part of me always thought I was destined for something great (fame and fortune, I guess), until I reached a certain point and realized I had no idea how to achieve it. And also like Black Snow, this inability has lead to some frustration in my life. I’ve been known to be a pretty negative guy with a gruff exterior. As much as a try to be personable and positive, it really isn’t my nature. I’m a grumpy cat.
But there are some pretty big differences. One of Black Snow’s defining qualities is his alcohol addiction. I’ve never had any problem with substance abuse. I think it helps make him an interesting, flawed character but it is not really something I’ve experienced. Also, he is a lot more hard than I am. As gruff as I can be, I’m really a big softy in comparison. I admit it. I wouldn’t picture Black Snow sitting around playing with his kids or taking guff from anyone. He’s got a lot more edge than I do. I can respond with a surly one liner like the anti hero, but overall I’m a pushover.
But there is a character I’m more like than Black Snow. It’s Filo! The cynical teddy bear is basically a surrogate for me, and often says the things I’m thinking. He’s not meant to be me exactly, but he is largely based on me.
I came up with the character around the time Alex let me know he was moving across the country. I didn’t know what that would mean for our comics and wanted to have one that was fully my own I could keep working on. I wanted it to be something personal, and I was inspired by the musical Avenue Q. It really struck a chord with me and made me want to tap into all those new experiences and disappointments I had felt as a young adult. And so Filo was created.
As it goes on he develops some traits that are distinct to him, and it is not my goal to make him my comic equivalent clone. But often he is essentially my mouthpiece and is used to share my opinions.
So there you go. I’m a curmudgeon like Filo who likes to complain a lot.