Justin Shady keeps on keepin’ on in California
We wrap our series with illustrators, artists, cartoonists and former Tastes Like Chicken staffers with Justin Shady. The ringleader of the now-defunct Milwaukee arts, culture and humor magazine, he now lives in Los Angeles, where he writes (for Variety, The Onion A.V. Club and Milwaukee publications like Milwaukee Magazine and CCN) and collaborates with all of his former TLC contributors on children’s books and graphic novels including The Roberts (with Erik Rose), I Beg Your Pardon (with Marla Campbell), Missing the Boat (with Dwellephant) and The Lava is a Floor (with Jeremy R. Scott).
Justin discusses how TLC came to be and the fate it eventually faced, how he fell into freelance writing after going to art school for photography, the perils of living a creative life and why he decided to leave Milwaukee for the West Coast. And Mark reveals that when he first met Justin, he thought some kid was trying to sell him a subscription for a magazine to put himself through college.
This episode — which is a must-listen, I think, for anyone who is considering freelancing, getting a job waiting tables to support freelancing, starting a magazine or going to art school— is a special coast-to-coast edition of Backstage. It’s actually a recorded Skype conversation. Please forgive the sound quality on Mark’s end by reminding yourself how wonderful technology really is!
And tune in next week for the kick-off of a new series on plays and players in Milwaukee and beyond.