Interview No. 139
Interview By: The-Great-One
Today's guest has been with us once before. He was here exactly one-hundred interviews before. When last we spoke we covered Pleasure Island and Angry Dog. Today we talk more about his roots in animation and the Manwhore series that has come to fruition. I am pleased to welcome back, Sexual-Lobster.
Q: It has been over five years since I interviewed you last. At the time of posting this interview it would have been exactly 100 interviews. I can safely say that when I interviewed you last I had just gotten into my own groove. Now I am firing on all cylinders. I would like to thank you for gracing me once again.
A: It's a pleasure to be here.
Q: When I started this I didn't really go through the journey an artist might take. Let's begin with yours. You have stated that once you were able to hold a crayon in your hand you began drawing. Do you know what age this might have been and what were your parents thoughts on this?
A: Directly after the phase that little people just want to put everything in their mouths. So probably 2 years old? I think they were proud and uncritical of my scrawlings. They probably still have them.
Q: When did you discover Dragonball Z and how much of an influence has Akira Toriyama had on your work?
A: When I was 16. At first I aped his style quite a lot, and it's obvious when you watch the first bunch of things I uploaded to Newgrounds. But over time, I think the thing about Dragonball Z that has had a lasting impact on me is the way the show is directed and the way action is paced. There's usually (but not always) just enough action to provide something for your eyes to look at. When I direct a scene I think about giving the audience enough fresh art and/or movement to keep them interested, but also ways and techniques to reuse animation and get the scene done in an achievable time frame. Dragonball Z provides good examples of how to tell a story on a budget, but it also fails quite often at pacing, so it provides plenty of examples of what not to do as well.
Q: At what school did you receive your Bachelor Degree in Animation from and what brought you to Griffith University?
A: The campus was the Queensland College of Art. It was the only university level course in the city at that time that had a 2D animation focus. I understand it has since become more about games and less about 2D animation, so I'm uncertain if I'd do it if I was considering a course now.
Q: You started drawing comics first, but then made the shift to animation. What made you decide to tackle animation? Do you have any advice for aspiring comic artists and artists who are interested in getting into animation?
A: I never thought it would be possible to make a cartoon by myself. But when I discovered Flash I realised I could, so I started doing it straight away. I discovered Flash pretty late because I'd been overseas on a working holiday for a few years and didn't have a computer, which is also why I was drawing a lot of comics. Animation has always been a preferable medium to me if you can manage it, so many more people are interested.
General advice...Start with small achievable projects. Draw lots, work on your anatomy. When people give you advice, think about where it's coming from and whether you need to follow it, because people love to make rules about what they do. The vast majority of rules are actually just guidelines. For more specific advice, I'd need to know more about the person.
Q: Who is Lord Zorgatron?
Q: When last we spoke we talked about your music video Dance of the Manwhore. Since then it has exploded into multiple sequels with Quest of the Manwhore, Milk of the Manwhore, Passion of the Manwhore, World's Greatest Manwhore, and World's Greatest Manwhore 2. How did all of this come to be?
A: Hmmmm I'm not sure how to answer that, it's so broad. Each project has it's own set of circumstances that causes it to be birthed. The most recent group of Fernando-centric projects is a series called Manwhore Industries, which was funded by a grant from Screen Australia and Google.
Q: One of my newly favorites by you has to be Harder, Tiffany, Harder!!. It was based on a comic jam. What comic jam was it and what made you want to bring it to animation?
A: This one I mean, just look at it. How could I not animate that? I thought it would be a really fun project and it was. Not sure how fun it is to watch though.
Q: The last time I interviewed you the one animation that messed with me the most was Pleasure Island. Interviewing you this second time I have come across Babies. You would collaborate with TheWeebl on this animation. I only have two questions. Who wrote the song? What the fuck is wrong with you people?
A: With each collaboration with Weebl he'd send audio and I was responsible for the visuals, with occasional input from him. So all writing by him. Those projects I did for him were great practice.
Q: The Four Horsemen is a brilliant idea for a possible series with a lot of scenarios that they could fit into. Could be a commentary on different things around the world. I remember reviewing it and stating that it would be cool to see these guys meet Raptor Jesus. Will there be a series with these guys in the future? Will they meet Raptor Jesus?
A: My friends and I wrote quite a bit of material for the Four Horsemen using our comic jam writing method, and I have since tried to refine it and turn into a series concept. But for some reason no potential sequel has really stirred me to make it on my own steam. I do have a finished script where Famine must care for his young son, who he didn't know existed. I have pitched The Four Horsemen as a show concept on two occasions, no luck yet. No they won't meet Raptor Jesus.
Q: What can you tell us about the Raw Latex series?
A: It's a story about a young man coming to age in a world where everyone wears Latex forehead strap-ons. It's written by Jon Bellovin and animated by me. There's two more episodes needed to finish the series. I need a rest before doing another one.
Q: What can we expect from Sexual-Lobster in the future?
A: I'm not sure. I don't really want to talk about the financial aspect of making my animations so suffice to say that like most people I am a slave to capital and the opportunities that will arise will determine what I am able to produce. I've gained a measure of freedom by crowd funding using patreon but it doesn't look to be sustainable long term, so we'll see!
In the past I have said that Sexual-Lobster has a twisted sense of humor and a strange sense of creativity and I still stand by that. He has shown no signs of stopping since I interviewed over five years ago. I for one can only hope that he continues his works more in the future. We have seen Manwhore Industries grown throughout the years. Who knows which character will grow more in the future.